Monday, April 29, 2013

Mother's Day Freebies

I seriously need to get some sleep...after I watch Nurse Jackie (on the DVR)! But, first I wanted to pop in to share some Mother's Day freebies. I am a mom, and had no clue Mother's Day is next week. Where is the time going? If you are a mom, you know the best gifts are the ones your children make (a colored picture, a painted flower pot, a paper flower and/or the classic handprint poems). And, you also know that anything your children make is perfect (even a scribble from a toddler). I included two freebies that are simple, yet meaningful. 

Click on the picture above to get the classic handprint poem and an acrostic "Mommy" poem for your students to complete.
 No matter, how many of these handprint poems/pictures my own kids make, I just cherish them!!! 

 It's a simple freebie, but it's one that moms love. Here's the poem I received last year from one of my children:
What are you doing to celebrate Mother's Day in your class?

Check out the Manic Monday Linky hosted by Charity Preston here. You'll find all sorts of freebie goodies!!! 
Classroom Freebies Manic Monday
Graphics (in Freebie) are by :

Fonts are by the wonderful Jen Jones at Hello Literacy
and Jessica Stanford 

Monday, April 22, 2013

Spelling Test Freebie

Happy Monday! I am stopping by quickly to post a spelling test freebie.  I was recreating my current spelling test paper, and I just found out about the Manic Monday Freebie Linky. So, I thought I'd link up. You can get the spelling test here. Just click on the image, and print it. It's that simple! In my school, and first grade classroom, we have been using Words Their Way for a few years, and this type of test paper works well with it. I think it could be used with whatever spelling program you use. 
Graphics are by the wonderful Jen Jones at Hello Literacy.

Check out the Manic Monday Linky hosted by Charity Preston here. You'll find all sorts of freebie goodies!!! 
Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Earth Day Freebie

Tomorrow is Earth Day...boy, that sure snuck up on me! Since my first graders are in the middle of our poetry unit, we've been writing acrostic, list and shape poems about the earth. I've included a freebie here:

The cute bubble font is from Graphics from Jessica Stanford and the font on the top is from hello fonts by Jen Jones. The border is from i neeta good clip (Anita Goodwin) .

Each year, toward the end of the year (like, right about now), my students make t-shirts. They then wear them for Field Day, our field trip or any other special days (or, just for fun). In the past, we've made tie-dye shirts. Last year, however, we did something different. And, they turned out amazing. This year, we are also going to decorate pillowcases. Pillowcases??? Yes, my son did this when he was in first grade, and they are adorable! He still uses it, and he's almost done with 2nd grade!!! 

I'll be posting my t-shirt ideas and detailed step-by-step "how-to" directions in the near future (for both tie-dyes AND the shirts we made last year) Both are easy! The pillowcase idea is also coming soon. If you do want your kiddos to make an end-of-year shirt and/or pillowcase, request those items NOW.  
Request these items:
-plain, white, 100% cotton t-shirts that have been prewashed without softener (that is only for the tie-dyes). Plain, white 50/50 
t-shirts will work for my new idea. 
-plain, white cotton pillowcase (usually comes in packs of 2, found them at K-Mart, kids can also send in $ and you can buy them).

What cute end of the year shirts/projects do you make with your class?

Saturday, April 13, 2013

It's Poetry Time...With a Freebie!

Although my students have been exposed to poetry throughout the year, this is the time we become poetry experts. April is National Poetry Month, so there is no better time to start a unit on reading and writing poetry. I've been teaching a poetry unit for quite a few years, and each year I add to it/refine it. Below, I listed some of my favorite poetry books that I use.
I received this book years ago, and it's written by Regie Routman (one of my favorite authors of educational books). She wrote a few, for various grade levels, but this one is specifically for first grade. It offers mini-lesson ideas, great information about teaching students to write poetry, and she even includes samples of student-written poems. This is a must-have for your professional collection.

 This is a book that is filled with only shape poems. It serves as a great resource when teaching students about reading/writing shape poems.

This is such a fun book to read! Kids have to rely heavily on meaning and visual cues to be able to get the humor in this wacky book of poems. When speaking "Runny Babbit" talk, the beginning sounds of words are mixed up with others. It's a riot to read and have students figure out the words. 

What are your favorite poetry books?

I added a poetry freebie here:  

I recently posted a huge poetry resource pack for teaching poetry in grades 1-3. It's packed with all kinds of goodies (poetry response sheets, a poetry notebook for students to follow along when you teach your mini-lessons on writing poetry, etc.), and it's aligned to the Common Core Standards. Although the freebie posted above is not included in the packet, it's similar to the other activities/sheets in the packet. Check it out in my TPT store.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Farley's April Currently, a Freebie and Laugh

Wow! I can't believe it's April already! In Central PA we are still donning our winter apparel, but hopefully warmer weather will be here by the end of the week.  I am fortunate to have the day off, but my summer break doesn't start until June 18th!!! I am on-time for the April Currently, and I added a writing freebie below. I don't know if you've seen the awkward family photos email that circulated a few years back(I'm sure you did). If you're like me, and you find that kind of stuff amusing, scroll below to see an awkward Easter morning photo of my boys-it's hilarious. 

Click this link to be a part of Farley's Currently for April:

I still can't believe I ran into my friend this morning! She lives in NC, and we haven't seen each other for about 5 years. We were hired together, we talked and we just hit it off. Well, our lives took separate turns, and we fell out of touch. When I saw her, I looked at her face and knew it was her. I kind of "whisper-talked" her name just in case it wasn't her, but it was. So, we reconnected and she's even thinking of moving back here to teach. 

Logan's Run (Autism Awareness) is this weekend. Our school's amazing autism support teacher organized a team to run. I happen to be one of the brave souls who signed up. I don't even run!!! I like to spin and do other things, but not run. This is one of those things to cross off my bucket list, so I'm doing it. Maybe I'll get out there tonight to practice.

Here is the freebie I promised. Just click on the image below. These are not fancy, but they have worked wonders in my first grade class. During our Daily 5 time, the students can use these when they go to the writing station. They just pick one up, take their notebook and go. I made my first one back in January, and when a student first used it, I was like, "Wow! These really work!". They've been using them ever since. After each round of Daily 5, we gather for a quick check-in. Anyone who has written can  share their work with the class. Nine times out of ten, their topic was taken from one of these menus. Quick, easy and, most of all, effective...that's my style!!!

And, last but not least, here is the awesome Easter picture of my 3 boys. At least the older two were actually getting along AND looking at the camera. My youngest, Nicholas, was just all-out grumpy. He even chucked his Peter Rabbit on the ground a few times. I was thinking, "Good times ahead since church won't be starting for 45 more minutes....". 

Thanks for reading!