Is September over yet?

Myyyyyyyyy Goodness!  We feel like we haven't yet come up for air much since this school year started. We have just started our 4th week with kids, and MAN we are EX-HAU-STED!  For any of you that use Treasures, if you can remember what it was like at the beginning, that's what we're going through right now. Our schedules are so incredibly tight, that we are just trying to keep up. We do basically 2 hours of straight reading, and are still struggling to get into everything in. We just started our small groups this week, and it's intense! We have been doing Daily 5 for the last few years, so we are sort-of used to the centers and all, but this is at a whole new level. If you're interested on how we've meshed Treasures and Daily 5, stay tuned! We will be sharing some ideas and freebies shortly. And we do apologize for neglecting our blog, but at this time we are really spending every waking second on our classrooms. But don't leave us! We'll be back to our normal selves shortly, fingers crossed.

So, for today, we have several random freebies for ya that we've been wanting to share. A week or so ago we did a few activities about apples. We read stories, did apple-themed word work, studies the life cycle of an apple seed, and all sorts of fun stuff. We ended the week by tasting apples, and graphing our favorite kinds.

On top of learning our THREE new adoptions this year, we have been having a ball getting to know our Smart Boards. We are using them all day long, and aren't quite sure what we ever did without them. This year on our blog, we will be giving away lots of free smartboard lessons. For now, we are just using office clipart so that we can share them with you. Feel free to change to make cuter or to fit your needs.  This little gem we used as a fun way to get our kids used to the smart board, and to create our class graph. To use, all you do is copy an apple from the bottom, and drag it to the correct column on the graph. And don't forget to add your tallies. Grab this fun activity {here}. Just make sure you have the Notebook software that comes with your Smartboard.

After we created our class graphs, the kids made their own graphs. These can be found in our Apples, Apples Everywhere math and literacy unit at our TpT store.

We also came up with this great little apple craftivity. We looked on Pinterest but didn't find much, so this is what we created. We made mosaic apple letters, and each of our firsties made one for the letter of their name. They turned out just adorable!

If you'd like to make these (they could easily be made into pumpkins for October) you can find the letter patterns {here}.

Last year Abby from the Inspired Apple did this great little lesson on labeling, and we thought it was a great way to start out our writing workshop. This is definitely an area that are kids aren't very strong in, so many of the kids really benefiting from teaching this so explicitly. We started out by created an anchor chart for our writing center wall. We had kiddos come up to help up label all of the parts of the dog. 

We then wanted to make sure that each child got the chance to label their own, so we created this worksheet for the kids to complete.
We were able to label it with the kids on the smartboard. {Seriously, aren't these things the coolest things ever?!}

If you'd like the dog worksheet, you can find it {here}.

And last, as I've been spending several hours either on a Friday night, or during the weekend at school, I've found another great use for our smartboards. My own little munchkins think it's just like the movie theater!

Check back soon, and we promise to share some new literacy center ideas, as well as pictures of our classrooms. One step at a time, right? Have a great rest of the week! Off to enjoy some more premier week on tv! Night night.


  1. Thanks for sharing the notebook file! My kids are bringing apples today for graphing so it was perfect timing!
    Still Teaching After All These Years

  2. Thank you for the smart board file! I just got my smart board a couple weeks ago, and pretty much have no idea what I'm doing. I sooooo wish I had checked my google reader this morning, because I created the exact same graph on the fly and let's just say it was not nearly as cute as yours. Did you know that you can click on that arrow after you insert a graphic and then click Infinite Clone, then you can drag an apple to the graph as many times as you want without having to copy and paste. Did that make sense? Looking forward to more smart board files!!!

  3. Thanks for all the great freebies- love them! I've had my SMARTBoard for four years now- I don't know how I ever taught without it!! My district has offered SMARTBoard classes for graduate credit and that really helped me learn different tricks. I was going to tell you about the infinite cloner- but Kim beat me to it:-)

  4. Thank you SO much for sharing your SmartBoard lesson! I had it on my to do list for this weekend to make one of our apple day and then I saw that you had made one! What a blessing! I got a SmartBoard at the end of last year and feel the same way: I don't know what I did before it! It can do so many things and I feel like I'm always learning! I'll echo Kim too--the infinite cloner button is awesome! Just right click on the image and hit infinite cloner and it will duplicate any graphic or word that you choose!

    I'm new to the world of blogging and TPT, if you have the chance I'd love for you to hop on over to my blog. I have a cute Zero the Hero craftivity Freebie on there right now that you might be able to use!

    Thanks again!

    First Grade in Foxwell Forest