Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Let's Do This

Two days in with my new kiddos and I am having an INCREDIBLE time!  I miss my former students tremendously, but my new group is a total HOOT.  I think it also helps that I am starting this year with 27 students, as compared to last year's 34.
We may have only completed 2 days of first grade, but we are working hard!  I am so proud of their eagerness to learn and their insightful comments.  Today, we worked on the importance of using kind words.  We read Chrysanthemum and completed a great craftivity.  While reading Chrysanthemum we discussed and modeled what negative comments can do to our hearts.  This activity was inspired by the amazing Cara Carroll.  Before we started the story, we created a heart to show how beautiful Chrysanthemum's heart was.  Then, each time we read something negative said to Chrysanthemum, we crumbled up the heart.  We then tried smoothing the heart back out as nice comments were made, but in the end her heart did not look the same.  My students and I even made a pack to not use harsh words because we would never want to hurt anyone's heart (we signed the agreement with bandaids).

After the heart activity we learned white board expectations through name pracitce.  Each student wrote their name and indicated the number of letters in their name.  This was my clue for the number of petals they needed for their name flower.

Each student created their own flower to display the beauty of their name.  I can't wait to show you our name garden!

One thing I learned, during my first year teaching first grade, is that choice time in a necessity in the afternoon.  The new firsties are exhausted and just need time to let their brains chill.  Today, during choice, one of my kids painted a very clear picture of his learning needs...

would you say TAG?  This same student proceeded to use unifix cubes to build tops that he could spin around.  I know who will need enrichment this year!

I would love to hear how your first few days are going!


  1. This was great! Great visual to see how hearts get broken. This would be good for counselors or ministers,too.

    1. Thank you! I totally agree. I feel like this lesson could be used on so many levels.