Engaging First Graders in Social Studies

I'm so excited to be sharing engaging social studies ideas with first grade teachers in my county tomorrow

Click the pictures below to download two of the activities I'll be sharing! I'll post details and slides soon.....eyes closing as I type! 

and the links....

Happy, happy Wednesday!

Back To School Bowling

Today was my first official day of work for this school year. Our admin sent a very serious email telling us to be at school at 7:30. I was, of course, running about 3 minutes late so I was a little nervous! We arrived to bags with a pair of socks and a shirt that said, "This is how we roll." I should mention the shirt also had a bowling pen. Next thing you know, we were loading buses and heading to the bowling alley! 
While everyone was not exactly thrilled at first (only because they had so much to do,) that didn't last long! We met a neighboring school and had a blast! We had a yummy breakfast. We bowled and laughed and goofed off and took ridiculous pictures and didn't talk about school and, well you get the idea. Our already awesome team rekindled our love all over again. 

Our admin always plans something a little wacky-obstacle course, scavenger hunt, etc-but this was not just wacky, it was perfect. In fact, it was a perfect 10, a STRIKE if you will!

What a fantastic way to kickoff 2015-16! 

What We're Reading Sunday!

Thank you for reading our (almost) weekly post-What We're Reading Sunday. 

T is reading a little something each day and just finished reading two gift books. These books are special because we received them in the mail a couple of weeks from my Aunt Abbie all the way from Texas. (We looked at that on the map, too!) Here I was thinking we had every brother book, but I was wrong! The books were such a nice surprise and T was thrilled to see Elephant and Piggie, too! He read both to M and almost finished them before M starting gnawing on the corners. :) 
I'm reading another professional read as part of a book study with some fab teachers from my school. 
Principles to Actions by NTCM authors describes and explains the eight essential teaching practices  needed for a high quality math education.  I would not call it a page turner, but it is an easy read. I'm learning and feeling validated and planning future questioning strategies in my head! Is it a must read? I'd say yes if you are not familiar with Common Core math standards and I say no if you are. In fact, I think maybe you should just spend time with your standards.

What are YOU reading?

ROCK Your First Year Teaching Linky!

I am thrilled to be partnering with Teaching with Curls and Crayons (fellow peachy pal) to host a linky all about supporting new teachers! We are presenting New Teacher Institute for our County and want to provide an amazing resource for these soon to be amazing educators! 

Thinking about my first year of teaching really took me back in time. I was teaching kindergarten in Mobile at a wonderful school. I was learning right along with my kids! I loved it! I kept a journal for part of my first year (it was hit or miss friends-the first year is all about survival!) That's where I came up with some of my advice!
There are a few I've learned along the way (that last one) but I think they are all pretty important.
1. No matter what the parent said, how badly the lesson bombed, how crooked your skirt was all day long--you must laugh it off. #truth
2. Plan with your team. Listen, take notes, make it your own--but plan with your team.
3. Share your own ideas! Don't be afraid to put yourself out there! Someone will appreciate it!
1. This is a biggy new teacher friends. You are new. Take it all in for a bit. Let the environment, your team, the setting and feel of the school wash over you. Not that you would or anything, but don't try to own the place on the first day. Seriously...not a good idea.
2. Don't be an island! A new school, new team, new job--AH! It is intimidating! Put yourself out there though! Introduce yourself to staff. Chat with the media specialist. Stop someone in the hallway and ask them a question. "Hey, I'm new here..." A friendship could be in the making!
I'm actually still a work in progress on this one! Give yourself a break. Data due? Back to back conferences? Have no idea what anyone is talking about during a staff meeting? Thinking about the 10,000 things you need to do between work and home? Give yourself a break. It is so easy to be really hard on ourselves. Stop and recharge. It will be ok! Walk away and breathe! Grab a Coke and smile. I even wrote it on my calendar this year in a fancy font, Give me a break Lyssa, give me a break.

I hope you will join our linky and share your great advice! If not, please leave your wisdom in a comment below! Let's introduce our new teachers to the blogger community with a bang! 

Thank you! Happy Summer!


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