Monday, April 29, 2013

Plants & Seeds

Today we were scientists!! We reviewed what scientists do (you know, besides make "potions") and how to make a hypothesis. I know, big word!! But that obviously makes it super cool :)

We looked at different kinds of seeds and compared them. Today I had lima beans, green beans, and peas. I let a bunch of lima beans soak in a cup of water for a few hours before the lesson, so we pulled it apart to see the inside of a seed and the teeny tiny plant inside. I love this lesson because the kids are so engaged and excited. Woot! Love spring science!!!!!

Our supplies...easy peasy :)

Each kiddo got seeds, which they drew (like scientists!) in their little seed books.  Everyone made a guess about how long the seeds would take to sprout. We put the seeds in bags and hung them in the window to watch them grow!

This is my Staple Master, in charge of stapling the books while I was working with groups to get our seeds in the bags. Best job ever. Seriously. They go crazy for it!!

They worked hard on their books!! We'll be keeping them to keep track of our plants and their growth! Once we see them sprout, we'll transplant them to peat pots to take home to plant. "Will we really get green beans?!?!" Like I said, spring science is the best!

Can't wait for #teachertalktuesday tomorrow! See you all there!!


I am so excited for #teachertalktuesday!!   What the Teacher Wants and Apples and ABCs came up with this super idea for teachers to post a fun picture of something they are doing in their classroom.  Every Tuesday.  I know, exciting!!!  I can't wait! 

I have my own Instagram account, but A Sunny Day in First Grade now has an account too!  Woohoo!!  I don't have many pics up just yet, but I promise there will be more! :) 

You can find me @asunnydayinfirstgrade

You can join in on the fun too!  Just post a picture on Tuesday with the hashtag #teachertalktuesday.  It's going to be fun!!
post signature

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Quiet Critters!!

Our kiddos sometimes get a little carried away with all the excitement we have in store for them throughout the day.  And that means our rooms can get a little noisy!!  I found this Quiet Critter idea at The Lemonade Stand Teachers and I just HAD to try it.  I made these cute little guys.

I gave each one a cute little name: Wonderful Wazzy, Fabuous Fiona, Magnificent Marvin.  You get the idea. I may have spent more time thinking of funky names than actually making these cute little critters!

There were a huge hit with my kids the second I introduced them.  Obviously I put on a huge production...I wanted them to know how important these little critters are!  I told them that these guys would be living on my desk, but like to come out and visit with friends.  The only thing is that they can only survive when the person they're with is nice and quiet.  Otherwise, they get super scared and have to go back home.  And we don't want to scare them right????!!!!  Kids in whisper shouts: NOOOOOO!  So cute!

I hand our little critters out just about every day.  The second I pick them up off my desk, everyone gets super quiet and focuses on their work, while secretly peeking at me out of the corner of their eye to see who will get the quiet critters this time!  They're like little magic charms!!!  I have 8 of them, so I hand them out to a few kids at a time.  To make it more special, when they are working quietly, I let whoever has the quiet critter pass it on to someone else who is working quietly.  That way everyone gets a chance (if they're working quietly of course :)!) The kids do a great job in making sure that they pass it to someone who hasn't had one yet.  Finding another quiet student to take care of you critter is a very important job.

At snack time, or when we are working in groups or partners, my kids always make sure to return their quiet critters safely to their home on my desk so they don't get scared.  They carry them like little babies in their hands, some rocking them, and place them ever so gently back home.  I wish you could see them do it.  It's seriously the cutest thing ever!

I'm telling you, these quiet critters are the best thing ever!  What do you use for behavior management in your classroom?

Happy Saturday Everyone!!  Hope you all did something fun!

Friday, April 26, 2013

Five For Friday & a Giveaway!

It's time to link with with Doodle Bugs for Five for Friday!  I hope you all had a super week!  As I mentioned last Friday, this was my spring break!  Here's a look at my week!

1.  Earth Day!  I love Earth Day.  It happened to fall over break this year, so I couldn't celebrate with my kids on the actual day.  Sad.  But we did lots of Earthy things last week though!!  Here are a few earthy things I did this week!
My baby veggies (and flowers!)

Sunflowers...I reused a milk carton! :)

I got a new water bottle!  I love glass water bottles :)
I'm reducing waste!
Even Moo loves it!!

Take care of the earth!  Recycle!

2.  My birthday is in May.  That means registering my car and getting it inspected.  Two of the most annoying things ever.  Usually I wait until the last weekend in May to make an appointment for an inspection.  And by then, everyone is booked.  So I'm left calling around to try to find someone who has an open time.  Or I just wait until June.  Oops.  This year I decided to just get it done early!  I got my car inspected, registered, and renewed my license!  Are you impressed?  :)  Well, thanks!  I'm happy it's done, but needless to say it's been an expensive vacation!!

3.  Last weekend, my dad and step-mom had a little dinner get together.  There are lots of us and we don't all see each other very often.  Whenever get get together, I'm always in charge of dessert - my favorite part of every meal! :)  You will soon find out about my obsession love for making cookies, cupcakes, muffins, anything sweet :) 

Here's the yummy cupcakes I made for them!
 A few close ups :)

Who wants a cupcake now?

4.  My boyfriend and I signed up to do a Color Run next month.  I'm not really a runner, but this one looked like so much fun!  So I've been running to get ready for it.  Here's the thing, I hate running outside.  I don't know why!  Put me on a treadmill to run and I'm good to go!  But outside, no.  Don't make me do it!  This from a girl who loves exercising and would give anything to be outside all day, every day.  I know, it's strange!  I can do it, I just hate every second of it.  Except the end, when I hit stop on Map My Run.  

Anyone have any motivation for me?  

I pass this sign on my keeps me going! :)

5.  I finished up my Frog Life Cycle Unit this week!  Here's a peek at what it looks like!  You can also see it here!!  I'm so excited to use it with my kids next week!! I just need to find some tadpoles for our classroom!!

The first three of you to leave a comment and your email below will get it free!!!!

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!!!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

A Little Spring, Freebies & Permission to Pin!

As you may have been able to tell from my previous posts, I. LOVE. SPRING.  Every bit of it.  From the snow melting to everything turning green again to the warm weather to the sun to the rain to the chirpy little birds to life cycles and plants at school and my favorite, most wonderful thing of all, the flowers!  I wait impatiently longingly each year for the flowers to bloom.  When we looked at our home last year, there was this tree, this amazing tree, blooming and beautiful in the front yard.  Now, as you can imagine, for someone who loves flowers, and anything pink, this tree was the most amazing thing ever and probably the reason I wanted this house (just kidding :) but really it was beautiful!).  Well, by the time we closed on the house, my amazing tree had leaves and no flowers.  I know, sad right?  So, I have been waiting and waiting and waiting and waiting and waiting for it to finally bloom again.  And guess what!  It finally has!!!!!!!!  So I'm sharing it with you because it's the most wonderful tree you will ever see.  Are you ready?

I know, I know, I can only imagine how awed you must be :)

But anywayyy, enough about the tree!  Since I love life cycles and plants and spring so much, I have made a few freebies for you! 

The first is a sequencing writing about How to Plant a Seed.
The second is spring writing paper and a poem.  You can get it free at my TpT store!

If you download them, leave me some feedback and let me know what you think!

As for Pintrest, I am linking up with Laura Candler over at Corkboard Connections to give you all permission to pin any pictures from my blog!  I am all about sharing ideas, so pin away!! You can even pin my amazing tree if you feel you must, tehehe :)

 What is your favorite part about the spring?

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Chicks, Chicks, & More Chicks!!

My favorite time of the year is when I start teaching life cycles!  We do so much and the kids LOVE it!  This week we started our chicken eggs [*happy squeal!*]!  We have done this the four years I've been in first grade and the girls at work have done it longer.  Last year we ordered new incubators because only one of our babies hatched the year before.  The new incubators rocked!!!  We hatched eight baby chicks!

Precious, right? :)

And since my boyfriend and I finally had a house, we should keep some........riiiight? :)  Those four in the picture are the ones we kept.  My kiddos voted on names: Snuggle Bunny (Snugz for short), Kermit, Peep, and Daisy.  I'll admit, not all these names stuck lol.  

Anyway, here's some more pics of them!  This is them about a week old.

This was their first time outside.

 And when we finally moved them out to their coop.

 Okay, can you tell I am totally obsessed love these little guys?!

Well, it turns out that three of the four were.......ROOSTERS.  What are the chances?  They would have crowing competitions every morning, every afternoon, AND every night.  Unfortunately we had to give them away to a farm [*sad face*].  I cried.  Over chickens.  I know, I'm crazy.

That left us with us just one chicken.  She couldn't be happy alone, could she?  Soooo we got more chicks :)  These ones were promised to be hens.  The first two girls were a little older so that we could have her out with our lonely chicken.  

They stick together like glue.  They remind me of little doves!

These ones were younger.  And super duper cute!

As it turns out, one of these little "girls" was actually not a little girl after all.  But one rooster isn't so bad, so for now we are keeping "her." :)  

So anyway, now that I have written way, way more than I intended, here's the main point of this post:  WE ARE HATCHING THEIR EGGS!!!  One of the other girls at work also has chickens, so we are hatching 9 of her eggs and 9 of ours.  I am so, so, so, so excited for these guys  (or hopefully girls!) to hatch!!  I'm super excited to see what they will look like!
We started the eggs yesterday, so in 21 days we will have new babies!  I know, I know, you are probably just as excited as I am!!  But we have to be patient!!!!! ;) 

Happy Tuesday Friends!

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Springy Adjectives!

We all know that April showers bring May flowers!  Here's a fun little craft I did with my kiddos last week.  It was a hit!!!! We started by reviewing what adjectives are and why they are so important to use in writing.  Then we made a list of all the springy adjectives we could think of - it was a longggg list! :)

The kids then had a blast digging through and destroying our scrapbook paper choosing a bright, colorful paper to use! They added their adjectives to raindrops and began their writing.  

Look at all these awesome adjectives!

This one was one of my favs! 
"Spring gives us flowers.  They make my eyes itchy but they are pretty.  I love flowers!"

 "Spring, spring.  I love spring.  I like spring because I love waking up with birds chirping.  I like to go outside in my raincoat and rain boots and jump in wet, rainy puddles."

"I like spring because it is fun.  It is rainy.  It is joyful because of the flowers."

Listen to all these fantastic adjectives!!  So proud! :)

 "It was a peaceful day.  A beautiful butterfly flew by the colorful flowers of goldWarm, sunny, colorful days make me want to go outside and play with the friends.  Oh, I love the spring!"

I put our beautiful, rainy umbrella projects in the hall.  They make the hall so bright and colorful and fun!  

They really do make an eye-popping display! 

You can get the pretty patterns and paper at my TpT shop!  It also includes an adjective thinking map and a making words activity.
Hope you love it!!!

My First Currently!

I guess it's a week of firsts!  Last night was my first Five for Friday. Today's my first Currently!! I'm excited to be linking up with Farley. If you haven't checked out her blog, go take a look!!

Enjoy the weekend!!!!

Friday, April 19, 2013

Five For Friday!

I've been reading Five For Fridays and decided to join in on the fun! Here we go! :)

1. We've been working on adjectives for the last few weeks. Since the weather has FINALLY been springy and warm, so we made colorful umbrellas with raindrops! After all, April showers bring May flowers :) Each raindrop has a springy adjective!! My kiddos used their raindrops to write a fun, spring story.

2. We celebrated a year of home ownership this week! Can't believe how fast the time flew by!! I spotted our turkeys in the backyard earlier this week too!  Last summer they'd come everyday (with their babies!) and have a buffet on our blueberry bushes!  I'm happy they're back! 

If you look closely, you can see them on the log :)

3. My kiddos each chose a NH animal to research. We did book reports at school. At home, they each made a can decorated into their animal. I absolutely love this project!!! They always come out great! We do this as a whole first grade, and our animal cans go on display in the lobby at school for the month of May!

4. I ordered myself a new lunchbox, school bag, and gym bag.  They came yesterday!  LOVE THEM! :)

5. Report cards were sent home this week annnnnnnd it's April Vacation!!!!!!!!! I'm looking forward to having the week to relax and enjoy the beautiful weather! :)  Who else has break this week?

Have a super fun weekend!!!