Saturday, October 29, 2011

Help My School, Pretty Pretty Please

This has been a crazy school year and I apologize for not posting yet this year.  We just had Pumpkin Day and I will do a post after I get some pictures of what we did.

Our school is competing for a technology grant and we could use your help.
We would love your support!  There are two ways you can help:
If you have issues registering, try entering your phone number with no dashes.

#1 Vote online: Go to our nomination page : and cast your vote!

#2 Text to vote*
To vote for Alum Creek text: Clorox 5052 to: 44144
Clorox is giving schools a chance to win school grants. Vote for your favorite entries between 10/24 and 12/9 at!

Friday, July 22, 2011

And So It Begins

My room has been 'cleaned' and floors have been waxed.  
So now it is time to begin the set up.

Here is what my room looks like now from the doorway.

It is a hot mess and I've decided to move some furniture around so I am in a type of limbo of how it is going to look.   

The biggest change is my reading table and moving it by the door.
Good thing- see all of the room, great board behind for posters...
Bad thing- it will easily be a dumping ground for papers, books...

The Math Pit

I LOVE my math pit.  
I put my calendar down there and it is where I do my whole group lessons for math.  
I also put all the math games there too.
I can't wait to decorate it.

As of right now I have all of my big pieces of furniture set (not tables- they are my pile holders now).
I did clean out my desk.  Since I moved it, I am losing some storage space, so I really really need to get organized. 
Next week, I would like to get the math pit started, my desk area arranged and more laminating done.
I am also getting excited to start hanging my owl stuff, but I need to do the basics started first. 

Monday, June 27, 2011


Next year we are gong to have a 'hoot' of a time in the yellow hallway.
I decided to do a theme this year and I went with owls.
I've been searching like a crazy person for all the cute owl things that would complete my vision.
Here is a picture of my first investment into this theme.

I've also ordered note pads (Having a Hoot of a Time with Ms. Budgell), pencils, and owl note paper.
I've also found paper bag owl puppets for our first craft.
I am going to keep digging and 'whoooo' knows what I will find.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

New Class Pet

I am in a really excited about getting another class pet.
I love my turtleTucker, but I want a furry pet too.
When Petland came to visit us at Camp Skeeter, they told us of a teacher grant they offer.
That was all I needed and now I want another pet.
So I am down to a bunny or a guinea pig.

Which would you pick?

Monday, June 6, 2011

So Long Camp Skeeter

It is time to put my Camp Skeeter t-shirt away,

finish grade cards, say 'good bye' to the kids, finish packing up my room
say 'hello' to summer!

There is always something special about the night before the last day of school. 

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Camping is Hard Work!

I just took a two hour nap.  Four days of camping will take it our of you!
We have been sooooo (isn't that such a first grade thing to do) busy.
We've had parent counselors who've taught us to zumba and make bird feeders.
We've had a police officers talk to us about summer safety and a man from Petland came and shared animals with us.

We've also had parents provide us snacks.
Staff members have been coming in as Mystery Readers. 

Well, I should go and grade papers and do my grade cards. 
Just too much to do at the end of the year.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Hi-Ho, Hi-Ho, It's Off to Camp we go!

After spending way too much time at school this weekend, I think I am ready for CAMP SKEETER!

This is what the kids are going to see, when they first come in.
The kids are going to flip.  It looks so different.
SHHH!  I took a lot down to "prep for Skeeter"  SHHH!

 Here is a view from the back of the room.

Tent Area

Paper Plate Ducks

Turtles made with bowls

Camp Fire

Mail and Agenda Area

Now I am going to enjoy the rest of the weekend!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Camp Skeeter

In first grade, we end the last week of school with Camp Skeeter.
We decorate our room and we do all kinds of camp activities.
I always go a little overboard!
Here is a picture of day one of decorating.

Since this picture was taken, we've added frogs, ducks and turtles.
I must say, these are the cutest crafts ever.  I can't wait to share! 
When the kids had extra time, they added animals and plants that we would see at a campground in Ohio.
I will be going in this weekend to put the finishing touches (tent and campfire) around the room.
I will be sure to take loads of pictures.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


We finished our Pirate Unit with a treasure hunt. 
Thanks to Party City, we had real exciting loot! 
I wish I could show you the faces of the kids as they opened this awesome treasure box!
Our bulletin board turned out so cute. 
 I 'll take a picture when I get to school. 
 I must share!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Poetry Party

 We spent the month working with poems. 
We went around the school building giving Poetry Breaks to classes. 
We read familiar poems from our poetry folder.  We had quite a collection to choose from.

We also spent a couple of weeks composing our own poems. 
We talked about all the differences in poems: some rhyme, some don't, some are long, some have a beat...
Every day for two weeks we read poems written by first graders followed by about 15 minutes of writing. 
The poems this year were interesting, but fun.  I'll have to take pictures of some them to share.
To end our unit, we had parents come to a Poetry Party, where the kids read their poems into a microphone!
Three classes joined forces and it was loads of fun!
Here is our background.

We had quite a turn out. 
 We put out a ton of chairs, but we still had lots standing in the back.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Reduce, REUSE, Recycle

In honor of Earth Day, I have to share my new favorite item.
It is the . . .

KFC side order container!

For lunch, I've used it for salad dressing and cheese cubes.

For school, I've used it for keeping glue, paint, push pins and paperclips.

It has an amazing seal and it is just the right size. 

Monday, April 4, 2011

Chicka Chicka Blends

We have been reading the top 100 recommended books for kids.  Chicka Chicka Boom Boom was on the list and I wasn't sure what I wanted to do with it, since most kids have read it over and over.  I came across incorporating blends while flipping through the teaching blogs.  I liked the idea and went with it.
This was a  great practice and review for blends.


Thursday, March 31, 2011

Signs of Spring

Eventhough it snowed yesterday, it is still spring. 
So, we have been focusing on spring words and signs of spring.  Every year I have the first graders make these robins.  I love activities that use their hands or handprints. 

I found this poem and we had a great time hanging our robins up to decorate.

                          Here is to hoping the sun shines soon!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Math Assessments

I have been grading lots of assessments that we completed right before break.  As I was finishing my unit 7 EDM grades, I was really loving my assessment feedback sheet.  It is quick and gives the parents the information they need easily.  I give the parents the following three papers stapled together: the unit assessment, self assessment sheet and the teacher assessment sheet.  It is interesting to see if their understanding corresponds with the child's self assessment.  It can make for a great discussion.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Spring Break or Spring Cleaning

I went to my classroom today to do some spring cleaning.  It was overwhelming and I was out in an hour.  How is it possible to have so much to do?  I guess I will try it again in a day or two.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

The Napping House

Sequencing Activity-  We practiced sequencing this week with the Napping House.  We did this activity in three sittings.  First we read the book and we pulled names for groups.  Small groups drew out the pictures and painted them.  Later we traced, cut and wrote characters names on sentence strips.  We reread the story and glued the character in the order they appeared in the story.  Lastly, the next day we reviewed the steps and did an interactive writing with sequencing words.  What fun!

Going to give this a try!

I have been inspired and amazed at all the creativity put into blogs.  I am going to take a chance and give this a shot.  I have no idea what I am doing, but I am excited to try and to learn something new.  I am going to start by downloading a picture.  Wish me luck!