Sunday, September 15, 2013

Student Led Open House Idea for Any Grade!

Student Led Open House Scavenger Hunt

Hi Friends,

Open house is a great time to show off what your kiddos are learning in school.  To be completely honest, I don’t really like talking in front of large groups of adultsthat’s why I teach 4 and 5 year olds, hehe!  During Open House I try to do as little talking as possible.  I purposely set this night up so that my students do most of the talking.

Here’s what I do:
1.      Share announcements with parents. 
2.    Play a slideshow of a typical day in kindergarten.  (My kids love seeing themselves on the big screen!).  I use iMovie but you can also use iPhoto or smile box.  Smile box is great for beginners! 
3.    Do a classroom scavenger hunt. 

Scavenger Hunt Procedures:
1.      Make sure that all of the things you want to show off are easily accessible to your visitors.  Example:  posters, centers, charts, etc.  Label each item so they know that they’ve arrived at the correct location in the classroom.
2.    Create your scavenger hunt.  Click HERE for an example of my scavenger hunt.  You will have to re-create your own since you wont have the same posters, charts, activities, etc. as mine.  Click HERE for a template of my scavenger hunt.  Just add your own clip art, font, and directions. 

3.    Share with students that they are going to show off their classroom to their families.  They have to bring them to different places in the classroom and explain to them what they are learning in school.  Each time they bring their parents to a particular location and explain what they are learning, they get a stamp on their scavenger hunt worksheet.  PLEASE MODEL this procedure with your students so they know what to expect during open house.  They play a huge role in making this activity successful.  After completing the scavenger hunt, tell them that they will receive a prize from the treasure chest.  A simple prize from the treasure chest will ensure a great turn out during open house.  Ever since I started doing this activity, my Open House attendance has gone up.  I had more than ¾ of my class attend open house this year. 

Good luck and hope you have a great time with this open house idea!


Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Classroom Management: Classroom Library Organization

An area of my classroom that I really wanted to update this school year was my classroom library.  I put this off for a while because it seemed like such a huge task, but with the help of my wonderful husband, it only took us an afternoon.  I did some research to find the best way to tackle this job and I believe I’ve found the easiest way to organize any classroom library.  Trust me, if my kindergarteners can successfully borrow and return books, yours can too! 

Download my Library labels for FREE for a limited time only on my TPT store here.  My only request is that you rate my product. J  This is only FREE until Thursday, September 12, 2013 so tell all of your teacher friends ASAP!

**Updated:  Freebie now Closed**
Purchase this pack on TPT!

Place a number label (included in pack) on each Library Label and on each individual book like this: 

Labeling them this way makes it really easy for kids to borrow books and return them to its proper place. 

My Library Cards includes 144 labels by:  genre, months, series, author, holidays, and leveled readers A-Z.  Each library label is 3"x4".  It also includes number and letter labels that you can print on Avery 5160 (1" x 2 5/8") address labels to place on each individual book.  

How To Use

1.  Print Library Labels on white cardstock.

2.  Cut and laminate them for durability.

3.  Print out number labels on Avery Standard 5160 address labels (1” x 2 5/8”).  The amount of number labels you print depends on how many Library Labels you will use.  Each bin/container/shelf/cubby you use will have a different number.  I use shoebox sized plastic containers to hold my books. Each label has 2 numbers on it.  Cut each label in half.  Each sheet of labels should have 60 numbers.  
4.  Place a different number label on each Library Label/Container.  Each book that goes with a specific Library Label should have the same number.  For example if you placed a number 2 on the Ocean Library Label, then all of your Ocean books should have the number 2 label on the bottom corner of the book.  I secure each number label with clear tape for durability.  This will help your students return books to their proper place.  This works wonderfully in my kindergarten class!  

5.  If you would like me to add a label that isn’t included in this pack, email me: and I'd be happy to help you!  Just give me a few days to complete this task!  As I add more labels to this pack, you can re-download the file for the updated version on TPT.

Hope this makes your library a little cozier!

Until next time,

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

My First Week of School Lesson Plans

Hi Friends,

Just wanted to share with you my lesson plans for the first week of school.  My kiddos are starting to get used to my procedures and routines and are getting the hang of school life.  I don’t have to repeat myself as often as I did a few weeks ago, thank goodness!  Hopefully it will be smooth sailing from here, heheyeah right!

My first week of school was jam packed with the introduction of rules, routines, procedures, and beginning skills like cutting, pasting, drawing, etc. 

Get my lesson plan in PDF format HERE.

Also get my FREE Getting Ready to Cut Worksheets HERE.

Till Next Time,

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday