Sunday, August 19, 2012

First Week Survival

The first week of school is always a stress filled time of the school year! Our class took time to discuss classroom strategies together. Instead of calling them rules, we have changed it to calling them classroom strategies so that they lose their negative connotation. The students and I will work on our strategies each day. To begin with, students created a circle map of rules they think we should have in our class.

After the students were done with their individual circle maps, the students work with their groupmates to sort their rules into our strategies. The classroom strategies we have are: Help people in need, Think of people's feelings, Never be mean or hurtful, Do caring things, Think of how your actions affect others. This was a real challenge for some of the students. We then discussed their rule sort as a class and found ways to display our strategies with one another.

As I have said before, I have a fish theme in my classroom. On Wednesday, students began painting their salt dough fish. We will hang them from the ceiling all year long. The students had a wonderful, creative time making their fish beautiful!

Our classroom is working on their Daily 5 - Read to Self stamina. The first day we worked 3 minutes, then 5, and Friday we achieved 8.5 minutes! I am so proud of their hard work!!

I'm sure you have seen the Post-It Questions all over Pinterest! Well, my students answered the questions. I loved reading their answers about what I can do to make their school year successful and how our classroom can run smoothly.

Lastly, for Art this first week, students decorated their traced names. Before school started, I used bulletin board letters to trace each student's name on poster board. The two rules are: follow my penciled outline of the name and decorate the letters, leaving no white poster board showing through. I will laminate them, students will cut away the extra margins, and the names will decorate our classroom walls!


  1. Wow...have you been busy! I love all your creative ideas, especially the names and post it signs. I'm your newest follower.
    Third Grade All Stars

  2. Thank you so much for the inspiration. I've taught block scheduling for the past three years and now am going back to self contained and have a huge learning curve because of all the new curriculum. I really appreciate the great ideas and hope to use many of them. Thanks again!!!