Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Back to School Bash: Week 3

Hey friends!! I'm back again for week 3 of the Back to School Bash linky party! This week we are talking about the first week of school! Being that my first day was last week, I'm SO excited to share with you some new activities that I tried this year that were a HUGE hit! 

As I reflected on last year's beginning of the year activities, I decided that this year, I really wanted to focus on teamwork and working together. On the first day, I gave my students a puzzle. There were four different puzzles and four different groups. They had to work together to complete as much of the puzzle as they could. They had to discuss a strategy as to how they wanted to work on the puzzle and they had to agree on it. 

 I was incredibly happy to hear such wonderful strategies being discussed at each group. I could hear some groups strategizing to pick out certain color pieces and then designating their team members to work on that color, other groups decided to separate the border pieces from the inside pieces, a different group designated one person to put together the bigger pieces that they put together and try to connect them. I was so excited to hear such wonderful teamwork from my new group of kiddos. We were definitely on the right path. After the puzzles were finished, I had each group share what their strategy was. I plan on re-doing this activity but giving each group a different puzzle to see if they use the same strategy or a different strategy. 

Another first week activity that I did that also worked on teamwork was an idea that I found from Tammy over at Housing in a Forest. I gave each of my groups aluminum foil, pipe cleaners and yarn. The only directions I gave them was that they were to work together in a group to come up with something creative. Once again, I was blown away at some of the projects that my students made. I absolutely LOVED hearing their conversation and how well they were working together. 
Here are some pictures of the fun we had! 

Here are some of the completed projects:
This group made a robot. 
This group made a flower garden. Inside the foil, they put green colored pipe cleaners to represent the grass. While they were presenting, they "watered" the garden with blue cut up pipe cleaners. It was super creative!  
This group made a rocket with a little alien on top! I thought this was so COOL! 
This group made a volcano!
Well, there you have it! As you can see, my first week was all about teamwork and building a classroom community. I'm so glad to have done those activities! Our classroom is already starting to feel like a family! 

I'd love to hear about some of your first week activities! Be sure to join us and link up and enter the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win a $50.00 TpT Gift Certificate!!!

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Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Back to School Bash: Week 2

Hey friends! I'm back for Week 2 of the Back to School Bash linky party that I'm co-hosting with some wonderful new friends! Be sure to scroll down to the bottom to enter the Rafflecopter for a chance to win some FABULOUS prizes!

This week, we are discussing Meet the Teacher Ideas. Last year was my first year having to prepare for meet the teacher because the year before was my first year teaching and I started in November. Our school's meet the teacher is just an hour and is held the day before the first day of school. Our open house is usually about a month later and that's the biggie at our school. 

During meet the teacher, parents and students are constantly coming and going. We don't necessarily have a set schedule. I like to greet all of the parents and students at the door and I have a little table set up with some cookies and a few important first day documents. I like to talk to the parents and find out how their child is going home, if they are buying lunch or bringing lunch, etc. I also have on my table my classroom supply list and some cute business cards that have my name, e-mail address, the school's phone number, and our classroom website on it. I've found that providing my parents with my business cards has really helped open a line of constant communication. 

The hour that we have for meet and greet sure does fly by! What are some of your meet the teacher ideas?!

We'd love for you to link up and share your ideas on how you set up your classroom and organization! 

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