Five for Friday... On Sunday :)

I hope everyone is enjoying this great weekend!!  The weather is beautiful up north where we are. The Hubs, little lady, and I headed to cape cod for the weekend!  Which was AMAZING except for not having wi-fi!  Hence I wrote this blog on my phone and will link up and post once we return on Sunday!  

In any event read on to see what was happening in 1B this week!!

1.  Elbow partners

I have always used the turn and talk strategy in my teaching, but I don't think I ever did a great job and teaching exactly what I was expecting while kids were turning and talking. We spent most of our focus lesson time learning how to work with our elbow partners. I assigned everyone an elbow partner ( the person who sits next to them on the carpet. I then talk about lean and tell which I tell kids is for questions with short answers such as how old are you? Or what is your favorite color?  Then I taught kids how to turn and talk which means kids need to turn their bodies to face each other to facilitate conversation. This is for longer talking times such as why is this your favorite book or what can we do to make my story better. I used this chart from this KIm Adsit unit to help us practice. 

After two days of practice, I review with students important parts of a book ( title page, cover, back cover) and the author and illustrators jobs. We continued to practice lean and tell and turn and talk as we were reviewing these concepts about print!  This is the poster I made again from this Kim Adsit pack!

2. Writer's Workshop

So I mentioned last week that my district has decided to use the revised Lucy Calkins writing program this year. And while I am really liking the lessons and the work my kids are doing, it is A LOT of work!!  All new charts, mentor texts, lesson plans, etc!!  In the hopes of making even one teacher's life a little easier, I have made a FREEBIE for you all. It connects to the first chart that Lucy creates during lessons 1-3. I made a whole class chart which is hanging in the room. 

And I have this FREEBIE to share with you!  Here's a preview pic!  If you download it PRETTY PLEASE rate me and give FEEDBACK!  

Revising has been tough for my kiddos. Many of them think their stories are all done with nothing to add. However, though my writing conferences, I am beginning to convince some of my hesitant revisers to take a second look and add more to their writing!

3.  Tally Marks

Every year is a little different when teacher ( but you know that).  A lesson that took 3 days last year may only take 1 this year or the opposite could be true. That's how tally marks were this year!  Many kids knew about them and those that didn't, got it FAST!  I only had 2 kids have trouble and they understood the concept, they just made 5 tallies and 1 across (6) each time. I work with them one-on-one and it seemed to have worked!!
We made this chart together during the whole class lesson.  

I used this FREEBIE (not mine, but a goodie) to have this kids practice. It was clear and sat of all fun for the kids. ( who doesn't love a monster game??!!??). It was a great assessment tool for me too!  

4.  Core values- R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Our school has 5 core values we hope kids follow. My team created some fun beginning of the year lessons that help kids explore these core values. This week we talked about respect. We read Respect by Lucia Raymond.  This book gives clear examples of what respect looks like and sounds like. As a class we made a ( not pretty) chart of what respect sounds like. 

I am SO Embarrassed that this chart looks this bad. I almost want to make it again before we complete the looks like column on Monday!!  
After completing the chart, each child chose one respect statement or "sparkle statement" to write on a shooting star and decorate for our doors. Here's what some looked like...

I'm looking forward to seeing more of what respect sounds like in our classroom this year!

5.  Compliment Jar

Every year I use one incentive program or other. I tried bees in a hive last year. Where kids earned bees for good behavior, but the kids didn't but into it. Then I tried a bingo incentive but the results were mixed. This year I found this craft from on of my favorite sellers, cupcake for the teacher. This star jar is located on my white board and will be filled with star before we know it!  

In the hopes of parent support and encouragement I also had each kiddo make their own star jar to explain to someone at home what we are doing. Here's what one looks like!  

Have a great week friends!  I hope to be back soon with some fun fall crafts the little last and I are making, we have just been so busy lately!!  I will def be back with another 5 for Friday next week. And hopefully it will actually be done on Friday;). 

A Teacher Mom ;)


  1. Thanks for the Writer's Workshop freebie! I am new to my school and I have the new revised books and the other teachers have the old ones!

    Kimberly Ann
    Live, Laugh, I love Kindergarten

  2. We got our star jar home on Friday, and it's up next to my student's deck. Great idea!