Monday, August 29, 2011

Week One DOWN. Shoo!

According to my calendar wall, tomorrow is the 10th day of school.  Already?!  What?! 

I know I’ll be singing a different tune in, say, February, but I feel like the year is already flying.  I’ve been over planned every day, and my new kiddos are wonderful, so I’m sure that helps :)

Of course, much of the past 10 days have been spent drilling routine. Then I  throw in a little procedure for good measure.  And then I drill some more. Despite the monotonous repetition, I really think it’s worth the investment.  I’m constantly reminding my firsties to train their minds to think like a first grader and their bodies to act like a first grader.  I’m glad most of them choose not to model themselves after Junie B. when thinking of the ideal first grader, though!

Our first day together, I introduced the three main rules of our classroom, adopted from a teaching partner of mine.  I painted these three simple phrases on long paper (from IKEA) and let the students work in groups to decorate them with markers and stickers.  A fun BBB (brain and body break), and a good way to facilitate new friendships. 


We also made Jitter Juice !(The same unit that includes Jitter Juice adapted for second grade can be found HERE)  It was twelve kinds of fun and I received a few sweet notes from parents telling me how much their children enjoyed it.  Always a good feeling for a teacher :) 



While it pleased the 6-year-old palette quite well, it didn’t look the prettiest!


Also, I had to use a pointer finger to stir it because, naturally, I left the wooden stirring stick at home!  Oops! 

We also bedazzled our poetry journals  with lots and lots of stickers.  The first grade mindset = the more stickers, the better! 



Our first addition was Jitter Juice!  We still can’t get it out of our heads!


Our major focus last week was launching the Daily 5/CAFÉ.  Which is a post for an entirely different day.  I’ve been taking lots of pictures, and plan to share about our launch soon.  In the meantime, I’m celebrating the fact that my kids read for 9 minutes and 52 seconds today, and admitting that I was totally embarrassed of my feet today during the I-PICK lesson since my tootsies have been all kinds of neglected since school started!  {FYI: The I-PICK lesson compares choosing a book to choosing appropriate shoes, and required me to change shoes in front of my students.}

The good news, fellow Treasurers, is that I feel that I’ve successfully incorporated Treasures into Daily 5/CAFÉ so far…and that Deanna’s Pete the Cat unit is an *excellent* addition to your first unit of study (short a/a/ family)!  We loooooooooved it!


I hope your first week of school goes/went well, too!

And, just remember…

Keep walking along, singing your song…because it’s all good :)


Littlest Learners said...

After some trial and error, I was able to successfully combine Treasures with the D5. I teach 3rd, but the format isn't all that different from 1st. I love seeing how you spice Treasures up! Hard to believe you've finished 10 days. We don't even start school for another 9. Glad it's going well.

❤Jodi from...
★★The Clutter-Free Classroom★★
Helping Teachers Get Organized

Conchy said...


It's so nice to hear all is going well!! I wish a was a kid in your class! I'd be having so much fun!!
What is Jitter Juice? Can you give some info on it? Sounds fun!!!


Debi said...

Yes, it is! We started Pete the Cat this week, they love the book and song. I am starting Daily 5 this year. We did Read to Self 3 times today, it was a harder day someone starts reading out loud or humming usually! We are in AZ and we have not been able to go outside during the day because of Extreme Heat Warnings! 112-114 until Wednesday! Ugh!!!! Love your blog, Debi

Grade ONEderful said...

I love how you let your kids "bedazzle" their poetry journals. I've pinned your great idea!!

Grade ONEderful

Miss J said...

Love everything you did the first week!! Your students are blessed to have you as their teacher!!

Miss J

Miss Griffin said...

We read for 7 minutes yesterday and I was so very excited! It was our 6th day of school/5th day of Daily 5. I'm doing the I PICK lesson today! Sounds like things are going great in your room! I hope it stays that way!



Patricia said...

Yay for one week down-you make everything fun for your firsties!So excited to use your Jitter Juice activities with my second graders!
Primary Practice

Mrs. Schroeder said...

So excited to hear about your Daily 5 kick off, Abby! I'm looking forward to trying it in my classroom this year for the first time! Love your blog :) Thanks for inspiring me!!

Anonymous said...

what about your other blog? I love babbling' abby.

Mrs. Lynes said...

I am implementing daily 5 and cafe this year! And after a few days I feel like I am finally getting the hang of it :) and I think I've figured out how to incorporate our basal as well! Is this your first year doing daily 5/cafe??

Miss Bowers said...

oh perfect! We do respectful, responsible and honest. We spend a lot of time talking about what each of these means and how we can show them in our classroom and other places throughout the school. I love the posters!! I think I will do that and then have each child sign them! :)

Thanks again for a fantabulous blog!

Annie said...

Do you know anyone that has cute social studies and science picture word cards for word walls? I know this has nothing to do with your post, but I have been searching everywhere!


Janis said...

Hi Abby! I just wanted to let you know that you're one of my Top 10 blogs!

Visit this page to grab your award!

Thank you for being an everyday inspiration! :)

Janis @ Caffeinated Conclusions

Paula said...

Can't wait to do this activity on first day with my kiddos!

laughinbrunette (Jennifer) said...

I added your blog to my Top Ten post here:
I think you are awesome!
First Grade Blue SKies

SAS said...

I love this journal idea. I'm gonna let my kiddos do that soon! I hope you'll be back soon with ideas. I gave you an award on my blog:
You can grab it here:
Kindergarten Korner

Amanda said...

You are one my favorite must-read blogs. I present you with a Top 10 award. Thank you for all the wonderful ideas and inspiratoin ~Amanda @ The Teaching Thief
My Top 10 Awards
Grab Your Button Here

Ginger Snaps said...

You are on my Top 10 Teaching Blogs list!

To view the post, go here:

Here is the link to grab your award:

Thanks for everything you share! I use so many of your ideas even though I teach third!


Mrs. Scoma said...

You are wonderful!!

I love your blog and just nominated you for one of my top ten. Get your award here:
See my post here:


Janae said...

I just have to say I LOVE your Fun with Firsties packet! Jitter Juice was by far, my most favorite activity ever! :)

Also, I changed my blog address, so if you could change it on your sidebar, I'd appreciate it. Thanks! :)

The Sharpened Pencil

Ms. Rachel said...

I love your blog! I am passing on the Versatile Blogger Award to you! Come and check it out!

Mrs. Lochridge said...

Hey Abby! Just wanted to thank you for a fun-filled back to school week! Your "Fun with Firsties" activities were engaging and exciting to teach. My students loved "Jitter Juice" and are still talking about it! What's funny is that there were at least 5 other classrooms at my school that made Jitter Juice. You have wonderful ideas and products. Thanks for offering them so others can touch the lives of their students. Your impact on children and their education is far-reaching! Check out my back to school post where I celebrate some of these activities.

First Grade Factory

MeiLing258 said...

Love your blog! I chose you as one of my Top 10! Go to my post to get your award!

Miss J said...

Hey Amy!!

I love how you introduced your rules!!

Definitely going to pin it :).

Miss J

Smiles, Crayons, and Endless Stories

Susanna Leonard Hill said...

Your class sound like tons of fun! What wonderful activities. Love the journals and jitter juice, and the way you introduce your rules!

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