Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Starting off a Happy New Year...

Happy New Year! There is SO much to look forward this year!
One thing for sure is our engagement! And how darn cute is the sign Ms. Thomas gave me for Christmas? LOVE it BIG!

Warning: this may be a long post- New Years, Saints Games, and GUIDED READING! What a combo. 

We rang in the New Year in NOLA… 

Our dinner at Muriel's in the Quarter, followed by watching the ball drop and fireworks in Jackson Square. 

The next day we headed to the Dome where I got to rock my sequin jersey. I'm happy just thinking about it ha. 

After the game I ran into Ms.Thomas! I definitely jumped into her arms. No seriously, my feet were off the ground. It's barely been two weeks and I was beyond happy to see her. We are dorks!

ANYWAYS… moving along to some "teachery" topics...
Since resolutions are the talk right now, I figured I would share how I organize my favorite time at school! READ TO SELF! It makes my heart smile when I see my littles sitting around the classroom, quietly engaged in a book! Cheers to that! Hopefully this will help give you some ideas on how to structure your own Read to Self time (This is one of the parts I choose to use from the Daily Five, so I know it will be different for everyone!)

I recently rearranged my classroom library. At the beginning of the year my library looked like this… arranged by genres. 

Well, my little ones this year are having a more difficult time choosing JUST RIGHT FIT books. Ugh. Pull my hair out! So I decided to elimnated the lecture I was giving over and over again about the importance of picking just right fit books and  chose to orgaize my library by Guided Reading Levels. 
Each book has a correlating sticker placed on the front, matching the label on the bin! This allows the students to easily put the book back into the correct spot! *Smiles* Also, located on the inside of the books is the AR Quiz number. 

Each morning my students are given time to Read to Self after their morning work is completed. They get their book bin and go to their spot in the classroom to quietly read!
The book bins were purchased from Really Good Stuff (I went with the neon colors cause that's my thing… what can I say?) I chose to put the students numbers on them, therefore they can be used again next year!

After my students feel ready to take a quiz on a book; they complete a book look. I keep these in an area for the students to easily assess! This saves me from handing them out each time!

When they have completed their book look my students will then go to the AR Quiz Line and place their number in the pocket chart.
The line starts off with ALL of the numbers in the pocket. Students find their number, place it in the chart, then return to their spot to continue to read. As I float around the room during our morning time, I call out the numbers in order for the child to bring me their book look. If I feel as though they are ready to take a quiz, then the student turns in their book look to a drop off box and goes to the computer. I have index cards with each child's username and password hanging on the computer!
Once they are done, if they scored a 100% then I will sign their incentive sheet! Last year I brought students subway who filled up theirs! I have smaller rewards in place for students who reach 10, 20, 30, and 40 as well! This REALLY keeps them motivated to read for comprehension!

Hope this was helpful for some of you. 
Hope you are enjoying the start to a new year! I wish you the best in 2012!
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  1. Love how you rocked your sequin jersey! So cute!
    Congrats on your engagement!
    Happy New Year!!

    ❤Mrs. McKown
    Little Literacy Learners

  2. A sequined jersey? How awesome is that!!!!


  3. I'm liking your system for taking quizzes. Mine definitely needs an update, thanks for the inspiration! : )


  4. Love your sequined jersey! So girly and cute!


  5. Love the jersey (I need a Packers one!) and your reading area. I need to make some changes to mine!

    Quench Your First

  6. Congrats! I love NOLA...we got married on Jackson Square! =)

  7. First of all, I *love* your jersey! I also really like the system you have for students to take quizzes. I often find my students just waiting around for each other.

    A Chocoholic Teacher

  8. Love this! I need a way to start organizing their test scores. Mine get a ticket and walk around the room with a Smarty Pants flag. I draw for books every other week. Do you mind sending the graph? I'm still learning how to create sheets.

  9. Thanks so much ladies!! The jersey is from Victoria's Secret! It was a MUST purchase!

  10. You, your jersey, and your classroom are just precious!

    Hop over sometime and read about our Penguin on the Shelf that will be visiting on Monday!

    Heather's Heart

  11. I love the way you organize your books and taking AR tests. I am nominating you for the Versatile Award. For more information about this hop over to Teach123-school.blogspot.com.


  12. Hey There,

    I was wondering where you got your pocket chart & the cards for your AR Quiz Line? I'm a first year teacher for third grade and that would REALLY be helpful! Let me know via email as soon as you can, thanks!


  13. Hi, thanks for sharing your great way to do Ar quizzes, I was wondering if you could email me the chart that you use? I don't have fancy graphic art like you. ;) Thanks!


  14. Hi there! Could you email me that reading response sheet? I teach first grade too and think this one will fit all my students' needs.

  15. This is my first year of teaching 1st grade and I love your system for AR quizzes! (My school does Scholastic Reading Counts but this would work just the same!) Would you mind sending me a copy of your worksheet you use? kelsowood@gmail.com It would be much appreciated and save me some time of needing to create me own :)
    LOVE your classroom!