Saturday, April 27, 2013

Geometry, Fractions, and Books...Oh My!

We have been very busy in first grade.  I have a love/hate relationship with Spring,  I love the nice weather and being able to play outside with my girls.  (See below)  I HATE how antsy the students get this time of year.  They want nothing more than to be outside playing.  I try to take my lessons outdoors as much as possible this time of year. 

(As you can see, my oldest is a little sassy when she isn't in the mood for her picture to be taken!)
In school, the students have been busy learning about 3-Dimensional Shapes and let me tell you, Julie Gesin was a life saver, and she doesn't even know it.  She has this amazing packet on TPT.  Every single activity we did from her packet my students LOVED.  They were engaged and excited throughout the whole unit and ROCKED their end of unit test.  Not one of my kids scored below a 90%.  Amazing, right?!?!?!  So are you wondering what this wonderful, marvelous packet is???
Common Core Geometry: Fun With Shapes!
(Sorry, I can't figure out how to make that picture bigger)
It is Fun with Shapes and it is in her TPT store for $8.25.  Well worth the money!
While you are at it, check out her blog!
Julie...if you see this THANK YOU!
We are moving onto fractions next week and my girls have been healthy and life has slowed down a bit for me, so I decided I would create my own fraction mini unit.  I am really excited about using something I have created with my kids again.  It has been a while since I have had the time to sit down and work on stuff for school. 
Check it out at my TPT store!
Moving onto Reading...
This first one isn't necessarily a book that I love, but it is one my students fight over daily.  We had a book fair last week and I grabbed this book initially for my daughter, she loves looking at pictures of real animals.  I left it on my desk by accident and the next morning when the kids came in they were BEGGING me to read this.  It is now a book where there is a sign up for so the kids know who gets it when they are done... Are you ready for it...

I will admit, I read a few pages out loud to the class.  It is very informative but humorous at the same time.  Click on the picture to be taken to the book on Amazon.
Blackout by John Rocco is another great book.  I love when I get to use this in my class.  This year was extra fun because we had a day where shortly after school started we lost power.  The electric company kept telling us it would be back on shortly.  Well, it eventually came on 30 minutes before school was let out.  It ended up being a really fun day and the kids STILL talk about it. 
The day after our blackout we read this book and then the kids wrote about our blackout.  The illustrations in this book are phenomenal as well! 
My two little munchkins are BEGGING me to watch The Lorax with them!  Hope you all have a fantastic weekend!


Thursday, April 4, 2013

Take Me Out to the Ballgame....

While I am not a huge baseball fan (as in, I don't yell at the tv like I do during football season), I thought it would be fun to do some baseball themed stuff in honor of opening day.  I also wanted to ease back into school after Spring Break as we still aren't having the best spring weather and the kids are getting antsy.
Players in Pigtails is an adorable book about the women's baseball league.  It even talks about the Rockford Peaches, which my students thought was awesome since we are about 20 miles from Rockford. 

Testing the Ice is another great book to read about baseball.  It is about how Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier in baseball and how his kids viewed him as a hero for many different reasons.  The kids really enjoyed this book.  They also did a great job of making connections to Martin Luther King Jr. and some of the other Black History things we learned about in February.
Casey at the Bat A Ballad of the Republic Sung in the Year 1888 probably would have been a better choice for older grades.  It was WAY over the first graders heads.  There was a lot of vocabulary in the book that was foreign to them.  While I tried to explain what some of the words meant, it was probably a bit too much!
They enjoyed this youtube version so much more!  It is much more first grade friendly that the book.
I had my kids play Popcorn Word Baseball.  I found it on teacherspayteachers a while back and kind of forgot about it.  I stumbled upon it in my files and the kids LOVED it!
Popcorn Baseball Game Bundle 

It was a great way to get them up and moving around the classroom.  It costs three dollars, but it is three dollars well spent.  I think we are going to continue our baseball adventures next week as well.