April 28, 2012

Math Material Organization

Here are some more pictures of my Math materials area.

These are the shelves my husband built. I have 5-6 baskets of the most frequently used manipulatives since I have 5 tables the children sit at. This makes it very easy to pass out materials and I don't have to get them ready ahead of time. The empty shelf holds the baskets of pattern blocks that we were using when I took these pictures. After trying many ways of organizing the items, I have found that this works best for me. I do have a few other materials put away that we don't use as frequently such as Base 10 blocks.
We start using math materials the very first day of school and go over the rules and procedures for getting them out, using them and putting them away. The children are very good at taking care of the materials. They love using them and this set-up has helped me avoid many headaches concerning the mess that materials can make.

April 26, 2012

Wizard of Oz Unit

This afternoon I finished a packet of Activities and Worksheets to go with The Wizard of Oz. I plan to do a Wizard of Oz unit the last week of school. I have seen many great ideas on other blogs such as having a "yellow brick road" in the classroom and making a rainbow cake on the last day.
I found this adorable set of clipart from Jessica Weible on Etsy.com. I put 2 of the images here to show how cute they are. In my papers I used all the characters, a picture of the Emerald City, yellow brick road and red ruby slippers.

I posted my pack of Activities and worksheets on Teachers Pay Teachers. You can see it in my store: 
SDH Creations. It is called "Wizard of Oz Activities & Worksheets". SDH Creations TpT store

April 25, 2012

Math Organization

Today I am home sick with strep throat. I thought I would show how I organize my Math games. I loooove teaching Math. (First Grade Math anyway). Here is a picture of the top of the wonderful math shelves that my husband made for me a couple of years ago. It is 8 feet long!
Anyway, I have been trying to adapt the Daily 5 reading to math. So, above the shelves is a display listing 5 areas of math activities. Under those are the names of some of our activities for each section. On the top shelf I have 5 file crates. They are the skinny ones you can find when all the school supplies come to the stores in the summer. The areas we use are: Partner Games, Working with Numbers, Fluency, Math Writing and Math by Myself.
In the crates I keep the activities and games for each section that the children choose from. I don't put a game or activity in the crate until the children have learned how to play it and we have practiced it a couple of times.
I will post a picture of the math materials another day.

April 23, 2012

Ladybug Excitement!

Today my kids got to experience ladybugs up close. I had them in containers on their desks when they came back from Music. They were thrilled! Kids always love animals.
After they looked at them (and let them crawl on their arms), they worked in groups. They have worked in groups of 2-4 before, but today I gave them each a specific job. The reader read a ladybug book to the group. The "cutter" cut out the labels for the ladybug lifecycle. The "gluer" glued the labels down as the group decided how to design their poster and the "writer" wrote the important information on the poster. Here are some pictures I took as they worked.

Apparently I didn't take a picture of the final posters so I will add that later. The children then created a Ladybug chart "Ladybugs are...do...have".
Last, the children wrote at least 5 sentences about what they learned about ladybugs today.

April 22, 2012


Today is Sunday. I ordered ladybugs to have in class and they arrived in the mail yesterday- 300 of them! I looked on Amazon to order them since that is where I ordered the Ladybug set last year that also came with a container for them. For only $2.99 I could order 300 ladybugs. I thought that sounded good, so that's what I did. We have 5 acres of wooded land so I was thinking I could let them go here once we are done at school.
The package said that if you don't plan to let them out right away to put them in the refrigerator. I did that overnight and today I got out 10 small plastic Glad containers to put them in along with some leaves and grass from the yard.
Oh boy! About halfway through, they perked up. They had been very calm coming out of the refrigerator. I had about 5 containers closed and then I had ladybugs climbing on the counter, on my hands and a few even flew off. I think I finally caught them all. I did end up going ahead and letting many of them go in the yard. 300 ladybugs is a lot!
Anyway, yesterday I typed up a book for my class to use this week. We have been studying nonfiction text features so I included a Table of Contents, page numbers, bold words, diagram, labels and a Glossary. I also made 2 student worksheets and cards to make class/group charts. I posted this on Teachers Pay Teachers in case anyone else finds it useful.
Ladybug Book and Activities. I'll post pictures of the activities we do this week.