Friday, October 28, 2011

 Teaching Doubles

Last year was my first year teaching first grade and I had very little success in getting my kids to learn their math facts. I changed up what I was doing and it doesn't seem to be working. Since I got a 2 week Fall Break this year (which I have LOVED!), I have spent a lot of time searching blogs.

After looking around I came up with a couple of things that I think will really help the kids and as a bonus I think they will really like it too!

I saw a couple of versions of a Doubles Song that I liked. I changed a few of the words because I wanted it to flow a little smoother.  Plus the one I saw stopped at 8 + 8, I went to 10 + 10.  Here it is:

I'm thinking about having the kids make posters to go with the song.
I also found the little chant 1 + 1 = 2 eyes, 2 + 2 = 4 tires on a car, etc... I made a classroom poster and then a cut and paste activity for the kids. I would post it on this blog, but I don't know how to do it, maybe I can get someone to teach me. I feel so far behind the times!
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Thursday, October 20, 2011

 Fall Break

This year our school district changed our calender to a continious learning calendar. It's not quite year around, but I think I am really going to like it. We started school on August 1 and then we have 2 weeks for fall break, 3 weeks for winter break and 2 weeks for spring break.

So far the only problem I have seen at least for me is getting used to where I am at in the year. I'm having to remind myself that we are farther along in the year than we were at this point last year so if I have students who are struggling, I need to get with it to get them some extra help.

I had surgery on Monday, but I am feeling good enough to sit at the computer. I have been getting lots of ideas from all of the wonderful blogs.

At our school there are only 2 first grade teachers and sad to say, we don't plan together. We are very opposite in our teaching styles. I miss having someone to plan with and get ideas from. When I used to teach kindergarten, I used all of my own themes and then used to basals for the skills taught. I am having trouble doing that in first grade because all of our first grade benchmark tests come directly from the Treasures basal so it's hard to get away from the basal to teach apples in September and make sure I am hitting asll of the skill that they need for the benchmark. I have been trying to make the best of theings by coming up with fun and interesting social studies and science projects to go with the stories in the basal.  The kids have enjoyed the things I have come up with, but I would still rather be able to teach fire saftey, apples, pumpkins, etc...  I spend so much time on the things I am doingfor the kids right now, without a teaching partner I just can't see venturing out that far away from the basal. Any suggestions?
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Saturday, October 8, 2011

I just found the world of teachers blogs about a month ago. Wow! I didn't realize what I had been missing. Since then I have missed a LOT of sleep reading all of the fantastic ideas. I decided to join the band wagon.

Our school uses  Treasures for reading. We just finished reading "A Prarie Dog Home". Friday afternoon is usually when I give the kids some free time. I decided to try something a little different. While they were in PE, I turned the classroom into a prarie dog village. I wish I had pictures, but I was so busy watching them I forgot to take pictures. My kids sit at desks and then I have 4 tables for centers. I used the desks and chairs to create the tunnels and then the tables were the rooms of the burrows. They had the best time. a couple of my boys were out of the burrow acting like eagles ot snakes waiting to eat the prairie dog. When one of the "dogs" would see them they would let out a warning chirp and they would all start chirping. I think this is a memory the kids will have with them for a long time. Hopefully next time I will do better and get some pictures.
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