March 15, 2018

Math Fact Fluency: Addition within 10

Learning fact fluency by the end of first grade is an important math skill to prepare first graders for second grade. Basic math facts are as important as learning high frequency words by heart. Students need to see a fact and know it... quickly. 

My class was struggling with fluency this year so I decided to make a no-prep homework packet to send home each week for some extra practice. I give a 5-page packet each week and attach a sheet of flashcards on colored card stock.

I also included some fun and easily differentiated activities I do during guided math. Enjoy!

Fact Fluency Homework: 

Facts 1-10
Flash Cards
Addition & Subtraction page (facts 1-10)
Addition page (facts 1-9)
Subtraction page (facts 1-10)
Fact Family page (facts 1-10)
Timed Addition and Subtraction page (1-10)

Hands-On Addition Fact Fluency Practice for the Classroom

I made these activities to be used over and over again in my class. I have different dice for the games that help me easily differentiate for my students. 

 Roll & Add: Students roll dice to practice addition. These ten frame dice I used help me differentiate because there are 4 different levels of dice (numbers 1-5, 5-10, 10-15, and 15-20). Students are aware of which color dice they are to use. 

Roll & Count: For this activity, I use these double dice. Students use any strategy to add. Again, you can use higher number dice. 


February 26, 2018

Using Qball in my First Grade Classroom: A Throwable, Wireless Microphone

I love integrating technology and movement into my classroom as much as possible. Having a room of 20-something 6-year-olds has taught me that I must find creative ways to integrate both on a daily basis, however, these products must be durable (I have enough cracked iPads to prove this)! 

When I saw Qball online, I knew it would be perfect for my classroom. After having my Qball for about a week now, here are a few things I learned. This is an unbiased, unsponsored post! 

I LOVE using Qball in morning meeting. It's a perfect way to highlight an individual speaker. It encourages my quieter students to share their thoughts. I take attendance each day asking how my students feel as they begin the day. It's a great way for students to share their concerns and excitements about the day. I'm able to gauge the general vibe of my classroom this way. 

I love using the Qball during whole-group lessons! Students share answers and discuss various topics using this microphone. They are so much more engaged once I take the Qball out because they all want a chance to use it. Answers are amplified throughout the room to ensure each person can hear the speaker. This is especially useful because I have flexible seating. 

* Qball makes every seat a front row seat
* It's super engaging
* It makes quiet voices louder
* It encourages movement 
* Super durable microphone 
* You can hook the microphone to your shirt and use it while teaching. 

* Students have tendency to put their mouths directly on the microphone part. Germ City!
* It's expensive ($179)

I did only found 1 coupon code. Thought I'd share:
Free Shipping - SHRKTNK

January 2, 2018

The Lazy Teacher's Penne Vodka Sauce

Teaching is tough. Some days you need a stiff drink, others you need yourself some comfort food. This recipe is my go-to easy dinner when I need the sweet comforts of vodka and carbohydrates. Enjoy!

  • 2 tablespoons butter 
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 
  • 3/4 cup Vodka
  • 28oz can tomato sauce 
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped 
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese, grated

1. Heat butter and oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and cook until translucent.

2. Pour in vodka and cook for a few minutes (until the alcohol cooks off).

3. Add in tomato sauce and red pepper flakes. Season with salt and pepper and saute for a few minutes.

4. Reduce heat and stir in heavy cream. Add cheese and serve over cooked pasta.

December 27, 2017

New Year's Resolution: A Beautifully Organized Classroom!

1. This  Storage Mobile Craft Cart with Dividers

Organize homework, folders, guided reading books, etc. The options are endless! 

2. This White Craft Table

The perfect table for your writing area or a word work station! Students have everything they need at their fingertips. Try putting supplies in clear bins!

3. Galvanized Bins for Leveled Books

Level your classroom library and keep your classroom looking fantastic!

4.  This AMAZING Rolling File Cart

I call this cart my "assessment cart". I keep student's file folders in the bottom, assessments that need to be graded on the top drawer and assessments that need to be files in the middle drawer. It's perfect because I can roll it around my room and use it anywhere.

5. These Over the Door Storage Organizers

Get additional storage in your classroom closet, doors, or cabinets with these fabric storage compartments! 

5. This 10-Slot White Dry Erase Marker and Eraser Holder

Never search for a dry erase marker or eraser again with this versatile rack! It even comes in 3 colors!

6. This Kate Spade Wall Calendar Decal (Clear)


 7. This Wall-Mounted Binder Rack

I had such issues storing my students' writing portfolios because the binders would always slide and fall. I got 4 of these and not each student has their own slot! Perfect to use year after year!

8. This Wall Hanging Storage Bag Organizer 

9. This 3-Drawer (Not Only for Make-Up) Organizer

I love using make-up organizers around the room for my supplies. I label them, plus they are clear so students are able to see which materials are available. 

10. This Echo-Friendly Staple-less Stapler 

11. This Magnetic Modular Storage Starter Kit

Use this to build a tranquil modular garden and add additional storage in your classroom! 

12. This Bamboo Charging Station for your tablets, iPods, and more! 

* This post include affiliate links that help me bring you more content like this. By using my link, there is no additional charge to you!

October 8, 2017

Using my Echo Dot to Improve Math Fluency in my First Grade Classroom

I got an Echo Dot recently and was so impressed at how easy it was to use I decided to get one for my classroom. I decided to make activities that allow students to set individual goals for themselves and also check their work. Here is how it works...

1) Students set a goal for how many facts they can solve. 
2) Students set a time limit.
3) Students follow the instructions on the paper and say "Alexa, set the timer for..."
4) Students begin to solve the addition/subtraction problems.
5) When the timer goes off students check their work by following the Alexa prompt, "Alexa, what is 2 + 2?
6) Students correct wrong answers and write down how many they got correct. 


September 24, 2017

CAFE: EDITABLE Rules for Daily 5

Daily 5 Rules

Establishing clear rules that everyone agrees on is an important part of implementing the Daily 5 in any classroom. This products allows you to make rules with the students and display them in a cute way. It's also nice and small so it saves precious wall space. 

Type student responses in and make the frame together. Place in a 4x6 frame.

September 18, 2017

9 of the Best Things Teachers Need to Buy on Amazon Right Now (Under $30)

Teaching is tough so treat yourself, girl (or boy)!  

1. This concrete desktop planter for your desk at work.
Turn your desk into an oasis with this modern piece. Plus, succulents need very little water so maybe this plant will actually stay alive!

Summer vacation is only 10 not-so-short months away. Start your planning and saving with this decorative piggie bank!

3. These rose gold pens
For the rose gold fanatic in us all.

For those days when you put your hand in something sticky... and you're pretty certain it wasn't glue. 

Every teacher deserves come papering. 

Your school lunch may not be appetizing, but your thumb drive sure will! 

7. This charcoal-colored laptop sleeve.
You and your laptop will travel in style with is 13-inch felt laptop sleeve. 

8. This motivating pencil or make-up bag.
Think of your sweet pooch every time you grab a knick knack from this canvas bag,

9. This white marble rubber-coated MacBook cover.
Your laptop will have a new look with a rubber finish with this durable laptop skin. 

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