August 2014 - Queen of the First Grade Jungle

Math Work Stations Day 1

If you have read my blog more than a couple of times, you know I love Math Work Stations.  Well today, I put my money where my mouth is and DOVE into day one of work stations.

I have written two posts about Math Work Stations in the last few months....

Today will be a super quick post (did I mention I work up for the gym at 4:40) to show you what is going on in my room.

Here is my board this year:

I actually have 25 students this year so I have chosen to go with a couple of groups of 3.  If this doesn't work well I will reevaluate and might add two more stations.

Here are two of my cuties using my Zoo Number Sense Freebie.   I was SO impressed by their gumption.  They were writing number sentences with the numbers on the cards as sums.  Way to go girls!

This station is from my Ready or Not pack and was prefect to help me see some beginning of the year skills from some other kids. 

Here is another game that required my students to do 10 more, 10 less, 1 more, 1 less.  They knocked it out of the park....I'm thinking about running down the hall and kissing those 1st grade teachers!

For computers, I had these boys on an oldie but a goodie  Fruit Shoot!  Umm do all kids love seeing things blow up like mine do?

I also use these stations to learn about my kids as workers.  I was impressed by their ability to set up, work together, and play the games with each other.  For a first attempt...really I couldn't ask for more!
A lot of people ask what I am doing during this time???  Well right now I am running around like a chicken with its head cut off.  No really?  Usually I am conducting a small group. Today I gave my group some easy tasks and then monitored the room.  I will eventually get my kids to 100% independence.  BUT for now, I am realistic.  They still need me.  It's all about gradual release! So today I had my girls list ways to "make" 13, 14, and 15.  

PHEW!  Now this tired teacher is headed to bed!  Night y'all!

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Dinosaurs for girls and boys!

One of my oldest and dearest friends wrote a BOOK!  I can't even express how proud I am!

Today I went to the book signing for Little Miss "P," a book about dinosaurs with a different spin!

Anne Magill has two precious daughters, but one of them (Merritt) is obsessed with dinosaurs.  Her dream is to be a paleontologist when she grows up!  Anne Magill couldn't find books that would appeal to Merritt as a girl AND dino-lover, so she wrote one!!!

Here it is!

I just love this page!  Girls are so much more than frilly dresses and tiaras!

 I know my dinosaur books and I KNOW they have all kinds of vocabulary so I love that Anne Magill included a glossary!

Another fantastic thing about the book, another one of our high school friends illustrated the book!  I can't even express to y'all how happy this makes me! 

We already had a copy for home, but I just knew my kids at school would love the book too!

This book is just too sweet!  I can't wait to share it with my kids this week!  You can get your own copy here.  Make sure to use the code queenofjungle for 15% off! Have a wonderful week y'all!


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Superhero Classroom Door and a BIG freebie!

I don't do a classroom theme. I am too fickle for that kind of commitment.  BUT I do like having a Back to School Week theme.... hence my Superhero Students Packet.  Last year I dipped my toe into my theme, but this year I have dived in head first!

Check out my door I completed today!!! I just love it.

I got the idea here!  To make the door happen....

1. I covered my door in blue paper and added the border and letters.

2.  Next I googled "Kid superhero silhouettes"  and THIS is the image I used.

3.  I saved the image and inserted it into PowerPoint so that I could make it exactly the size I wanted.

4.  I projected the image onto my Smartboard and traced.

***After a few tries I realized that if I just unplugged my board from the wall I could trace on my Smartboard without activating the screen.  I am sure most of you would have thought of that, BUT it was a total ah hah moment for me!

Another aspect of the Superhero Back to School theme for me this year is my classroom binder!  I know many of you know about binder systems.  My students will take the binder back and forth from home every day.  I will have five sections: Our Classroom, Spelling, Homework, Math, and Reading.  I will get more into the details of the binder in a later post!

I also made these cute little notes to go home with my kids on the first day of school!  You can snag it (I made one for Kinder through fifth) and the binder cover in my google docs!

While you are there, you can check out my Back to School Unit!!!

Wish me luck I meet my sweet SUPERHEROES tomorrow!

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***Come check out my Treat Goodies****

In the age of texts, emails, and facebook, there is nothing more special that getting a card in the mail.  Earlier this summer my family was incredibly blessed to travel to Kentucky to help my grandparents celebrate their 80th birthdays.  My entire extended family was there to enjoy this milestone.  

We ate, we slip-n-slided, we sang, and we talked.  We talked a lot.  There are sixteen of us cousins so as you can imagine we have lots of wild stories to remind each other of that involved summers on the farm. 

After we returned home I was lucky to find and use Treat Greeting Cards to help commemorate this special event.  I picked one of my favorite pictures--- no one had their eyes closed-- and turn it into sweet card.  I thought that my grandparents would just LOVE knowing we were thinking of them when they checked the mail!

I am a snob about my cards y'all.   This card is high quality--- thick, sturdy, and such a nice texture! 

When I made the card online I was able to insert the text that I desired.  You can actually do the entire process online and mailed to the recipient of your choice,  but I had planned on using Princess Emmie's help!

She loved it! I wanted to make sure that Emmie knows you can send cards more than on just birthdays!

Emmie has got this modeling thing down!  She even turned around and posed en route to the mailbox without a request.  Selfishly I just couldn't imagine sending this card and not having something for us at our I was able to use the same site to also make this happen!  

Check out this precious mug!
If you know me than you know that coffee and my family are at the top of my list!  I just can't get through the day without either of them!

As we head back into the school year, I encourage you to use greeting cards and pictures to add a personal touch to your school and family projects!  I know that I have a Back-to-School picture project that is going to be happening VERY soon, but I can't spill the beans on that just yet!


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Two new products and MY NEW blog design!

Do you notice something AH-MAZING?!?!

I got a new blog design, and I am absolutely in love with it!

Parker is the best.  I think I was his first blog design (besides his wife's), and I can assure you that he is the absolute BEST to have beautifying your blog!  You can find Parker at PJ's Design Laboratory and tell him I sent you!  Just because I LOVE what Parker has done for me, I want to help his new fb page out a little.  Go "like" PJ Design Laboratory on FB come back here and comment and tell me what you think about my new design.  I will give two people any item (minus a bundle) that they would like from my store!

P.S.  Did you notice the Creative Clips Graphics???  Krista made those just for me, but you can find tons of adorable graphics in her store.  I might be a little obsessed with her clipart ;)

Yesterday morning I sat down to do my classroom jobs and a product was born.  haha. Seriously though, I stinkin' love these cards!

You can find these classroom jobs in my TPT store by clicking on the links.  I made the cards in a large version and small. I also included number circles in two different sizes to identify which student has each job.

Here is how I hung the job cards in my room.  They add just the right amount of color to this area of my room!

I also finished up some Back to School Centers that I think are just TOO cute!  I have had a couple of requests to separate the packet into an ELA section and a Math section.  I plan on doing that first thing after church tomorrow!

Monday is my first day back to work, but I have two full days of working in my room so I am a little but excited to be getting lots done!  Have a wonderful weekend!


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Final Blends and Digraphs Unit and THE SALE!

Hi y'all!  Did you have fun with the B2S Giveaway?!?!  I know I did!  I announced the winner of the Teacher's Kid basket on the rafflecopter!

In other news...did you hear about the....

And just in time for THE Sale, I finished my newest creation!  You can click on the link to check it out on TPT.  

I am SO excited because this unit has tons that I can use throughout the year in guided reading.  I will put up the posters this week and I will prepare the rest of the materials so they are ready to go depending on when I feel that my students are ready for them!

I backed my posters in black cardstock, but you should use whatever color works best in your room!  

Here is the link to my original beginning Blends and Digraphs Posters and Activities: 

**********************Resources that might help you survive the year*******************

Here are my best selling Busy Teacher Packets.  You can buy the bundled sets or get each month individually in my store!

 I also have this SUPER fun Back to School Unit that is all prepped and ready for my 2nd graders!

You can also use the Custom Categories on my TPT page to help you find exactly what you are looking for.
                                           I hope you have fun shopping--- I know I will!

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The GRAND Prize Basket!

Hey there teacher friends! We so hope that you are all enjoying the B2S Bash 2014 blog hop. We know how hard teachers work all year long, so we hope that some of these prizes will make your classroom life a little easier. We have one more HUGE Bash Basket that will go to one lucky winner. We are all kinda jealous of this one, and it really doesn't need a description or an introduction….




????? …..

The Ultimate Bash Basket: 

Are you kidding me?!? Now you see why we are completely jealous! We all know about the millions of different ways that you can use an iPad in the classroom…and $100 at TPT?!? What?!? 


Have y'all heard about the GoPro Camera?!? Holy amazing! The uses for this camera are endless, and it is made to endure a lot of rough housing. You know…surfing….swimming….skateboarding….24+ students! :) And the best part?!? As if it could get  any better…the videos download directly to your iPad. Just imagine the ways that you could use this in your classroom (and not have to worry about your students breaking it!) 

I know, I know! You are ready to enter to win, right?!? 

Here you go: 

And if you haven't started your Back to School Bash hop, you can begin right {HERE!} and enter for your chance to win 18 different prize baskets. It all ends TOMORROW…so hurry, hurry! 


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