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Holidays

Classroom “Heart Attack” – Promoting Positivity and Kindness

Holidays
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A few years ago I started this whole “Heart Attack” on February 1. Each day up until Valentine’s Day I add a new heart to the white board sharing something that I loved about our class.  It’s a great way to show kids how to focus on the positive and promote kindness and compliments. 

Examples –

  • I love how you worked quietly during math rotations.
  • I love how you were so kind and friendly to the people working in the cafeteria.
  • I love how excited you were to start your research for your report.
  • I love how hard  you worked on your math test.
  • I love how you helped clean up our classroom and throw away the trash.
  • I love how we all worked together and got along while playing math games.
  • I love how you played nicely together during recess.

Special Twist Idea

You could even get students involved and put “heart attacks” on other classroom doors of classes in the same grade level. Students could also add their own hearts to the board of things they notice the class doing.

For More February Ideas

Click HERE for more February Classroom Ideas.

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December Classroom Ideas

Holidays

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The holidays are coming and today I’m excited to share some December classroom ideas with you!

December Book Suggestions:

Please note Amazon affiliate links are included in this post for your convenience.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Photo of 5 Fun Books for December

Here are five fun books that you can share with your class during the month of December.

December Classroom Idea – Candy Cane Science Experiment

Science experiments are always fun and this one includes candy canes! For this activity, students can make predictions about what they will think when you put a candy cane in hot water, cold water, and vinegar.  They love seeing the changes that occur! This can also be a great opportunity to write down predictions and observations during the experiment. To learn more about it, click HERE.

December Classroom Idea – Polar Express Day

Photo of train set-up for Polar Express Day - December Classroom Ideas

One of my favorite days at school is Polar Express Day! When I taught first grade we had a whole week dedicated to the story – The Polar Express.  We read the story, worked on comprehension questions, and writing prompts about the book.  Then, the special activity was our Polar Express Day.  Each student wore pajamas to school and got their Polar Express ticket! To read more about this special day, click HERE.

December Resource Suggestions:

Here are some of my favorite resources to use during the month of December.

Kindness Card FREEBIE

Photo of FREE Classroom Kindness Cards

The holiday season is a great opportunity to promote kindness in the classroom and community. These FREE Kindness Cards provide many opportunities for your students to spread some holiday cheer! Click HERE to grab these FREE Kindness Cards.

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November Classroom Ideas

Holidays
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Blog header for November Classroom Ideas - photo of Menu activity

Thanksgiving is coming and today I’m excited to share some November classroom ideas with you!

November Book Suggestions:

Photo of Thanksgiving books for November Classroom Ideas

Please note Amazon affiliate links are included in this post for your convenience.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Here are five fun books that you can share with your class during the month of November.

November Classroom Ideas – Menu Math:

Photo of Menu Math November Classroom Activity Idea

Thanksgiving can provide a fun opportunity for students to practice their math skills in a variety of ways! Students could share a family recipe with the class and focus on the measurement and fraction aspect. While sharing their family recipe, students could also work with money totaling up the cost of the ingredients.  Students could also work to plan their own Thanksgiving Meal. They would need to figure out the total number of guests, menu, etc – providing multiple opportunities for math practice!

November Classroom Ideas – Resource Suggestions:

Here are 2 of my favorite resources to use during the month of November.

  • November Morning Meeting Activity Slides – These fun fall/Thanksgiving themed Morning Meeting Activity Slides will keep your students busy the whole month of November. Click HERE to grab them for your class and save time in your Morning Meeting Prep.
  • Thanksgiving Word Problems – Story problems are a great way for students to practice a variety of math skills and build their problem solving abilities. These Thanksgiving themed word problems are great for independent practice, can be used as an Around the Room Activity, and more! Get these word problems HERE for your math students!

Thanksgiving Writing FREEBIE:

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November is a great time to practice gratitude! Grab these FREE Thankful Writing Prompts to share with your class. Click HERE to get your FREEBIE.

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October Classroom Ideas

Holidays
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Halloween is coming and today I’m excited to share some October classroom ideas with you!

October Book Suggestions:

Photo of 5 fun books for October Classroom Ideas

Please note Amazon affiliate links are included in this post for your convenience.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Here are five fun books that you can share with your class during the month of October.

October Classroom Idea – Create a Jack-o-Lantern:

Photo of FREE create a digital jack-o-lantern activity

Students can use shapes and/or pattern blocks to create their own jack-o-lantern. I also have this activity as a digital FREEBIE in my TPT store >>> HERE. Students can use the shapes in Google Slides™ to create their own jack-o-lantern.

October Resource Suggestions:

Here are 2 of my favorite resources to use during the month of October.

  • October Morning Meeting Activity Slides – These fun fall/Halloween themed Morning Meeting Activity Slides will keep your students busy the whole month of October. Click HERE to grab them for your class and save time in your Morning Meeting Prep.
  • Halloween Word Problems – Story problems are a great way for students to practice a variety of math skills and build their problem solving abilities. These Halloween themed word problems are great for independent practice, can be used as an Around the Room Activity, and more! Get these word problems HERE for your math students!

October Writing FREEBIE:

Photo of FREE Writing prompts - Student writing example of a scary story

These Halloween-themed FREE Writing Prompts are perfect to use during the month of October! Click HERE to get your FREEBIE.

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April Classroom Ideas

Books, Holidays, Morning Meeting

Please note Amazon affiliate links are included in this post for your convenience.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Blog header photo for April Classroom Ideas. Photo of Easter eggs with math problems.

Today I’ll be rounding up a variety of teaching ideas that you can use during the month of April. I will share some fun themed books, activities, and a FREEBIE that you can use with your class.

April Book Suggestions:

Photo of 5 spring book covers

Here are five fun books that you can share with your class during the month of April.

April Classroom Idea – Math Easter Egg Hunt

Photo of math Easter Egg hunt

One of my favorite activities during April is to do a math Easter egg hunt! I buy a ton of Easter eggs and hide different math problems in them. You could differentiate this for any grade level – single-digit addition and subtraction, double-digit addition and subtraction, multiplication, division, etc. Then, I hide the eggs around the room.

I figure out how many eggs each student should find depending on the number that I have and the kids have to hunt for their math problems. I give them a recording sheet to record their work and responses and off they go! They love this activity and it can be a great way to prep for a test!

April Resource Suggestions:

Here are 3 of my favorite resources to use during the month of April.

  • April Morning Meeting Activity Slides – These fun spring themed Morning Meeting Activity Slides will keep your students busy the whole month of April. Click HERE to grab them for your class and save time in your Morning Meeting Prep.
  • Easter Word Problems – Story problems are a great way for students to practice a variety of math skills and build their problem solving abilities. These Easter themed word problems are great for independent practice, can be used as an Around the Room Activity, and more! Get these word problems HERE for your math students! (Digital and Print and Digital Bundle are also available in my store).
  • Earth Day Writing Prompts – The perfect set of writing prompts to celebrate Earth Day on April 22nd! Click HERE to check them out!

April FREEBIE:

Photo of FREE Grammar Worksheets

These spring-themed FREE Grammar Worksheets are perfect to use during the month of April! These printables are great for independent practice, review, test prep, or homework! Includes practice using capitals and end marks, working with singular and plural nouns, and changing verb tenses. Click HERE to get your FREEBIE.

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March Classroom Ideas

Holidays

Please note Amazon affiliate links are included in this post for your convenience.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Today I’ll be rounding up a variety of teaching ideas that you can use during the month of March. I will share some engaging books, activities, and a FREEBIE that you can use with your class.

March Book Suggestions:

Here are five fun books that you can share with your class during the month of March.

March Classroom Idea – Mischievous Leprechaun

Photo of mess left in classroom by "leprechaun"

On St. Patrick’s Day, the leprechauns visit our classroom and make quite the mess. They knock many things over and leave green leprechaun dust on the desks. The kids always think it is quite funny!

March Classroom Idea – Book Tournament

Photo of book tournament bracket

March is not only about St. Patrick’s Day. I also love celebrating March Madness with my class and even doing a little basketball transformation.

The book tournament is one of my favorite parts of this transformation. For the book tournament, we create brackets like the basketball team brackets. I created this poster board and then printed photos of the book that were competing. You could also print a blank Sweet 16 bracket online and either type or write the book titles in.

This tournament takes more than a day and students really get into it. I pick out 16 picture books that I have not read to my class yet and that are less common. I want to try to pick out books that my students are unfamiliar with. Each time, I read the two books that are competing against each other. The class does a silent vote and the winner moves on to the next round. They love seeing which book will win it all!

To see more about the basketball room transformation >>> CLICK HERE.

March Resource Suggestions:

Here are two of my favorite resources to use during the month of March.

  • St. Patrick’s Day Word Problems – Word problems are a great way for students to practice a variety of math skills and build their problem solving abilities. These St. Patrick’s Day themed word problems are great for independent practice, can be used as an Around the Room Activity, and more! Get these word problems HERE for your math students! (Digital and Print and Digital Bundle are also available in my store).
  • March Morning Meeting Activities – You’ll have ALL of your Morning Meeting Activities planned out for the month of March with these easy-to-use slides! These St. Patrick’s Day themed activities will keep your students engaged and having fun! Includes activities like Noggle, Word Creator, Story Starter, Quick Draw, and more! Grab them HERE.

March FREEBIE:

Photo of FREE March writing prompts

These FREE March Writing Prompts are perfect to use in your classroom during the month of March! This FREEBIE includes 2 prompts. These engaging prompts are great to use as a writing warm-up, for homework, literacy stations, and more! Grab this FREEBIE >>> HERE.

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February Classroom Ideas

Holidays

Please note Amazon affiliate links are included in this post for your convenience.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Blog Header for February Classroom Ideas

Today I’ll be rounding up a variety of teaching ideas that you can use during the month of February. I will share some engaging books, activities, and a FREEBIE that you can use with your class.

February Book Suggestions:

Photos of February Classroom Books - photos of covers for Love Monster, Crankenstein Valentine, Valentine's Day Jitters, I Am Love, There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed a Rose

Here are five fun books that you can share with your class during the month of February.

For ideas for tying in reading and writing with these books, check out my Youtube video!

February Classroom Idea – Heart Attack:

Photo of hearts for heart attack - sharing things I love about my class.

A few years ago I started this whole “Heart Attack” on February 1. Each day up until Valentine’s Day I added a new heart onto the white board sharing something that I loved about our class! It’s a great way to show kids how to focus on the positive and promote kindness and compliments.

Valentine’s Day Party Ideas:

Minute to Win It Valentine’s Day Party is one of my favorite classroom parties ever! Click HERE to see my whole blog post all about it!

FREEBIE – February Morning Meeting Share Questions

If you use Morning Meeting or are looking for some fun share questions with a February theme, grab this FREEBIE. It includes 20 share questions focused on Valentine’s Day, President’s Day, and winter themed. Click HERE for your FREE set!

February Resource Suggestions:

Photo of February Classroom Ideas resources - pictures of word problems and Quick Draw activity

Here are two of my favorite resources to use during the month of February.

  • Valentine’s Day Word Problems – Word problems are a great way for students to practice a variety of math skills and build their problem solving abilities. These Valentine’s Day themed word problems are great for independent practice, can be used as an Around the Room Activity, and more! Get these word problems HERE for your math students! (Digital and Print and Digital Bundle are also available in my store).
  • February Morning Meeting Activities – You’ll have ALL of your Morning Meeting Activities planned out for the month of February with these easy-to-use slides! These Valentine’s Day themed activities will keep your students engaged and having fun! Includes activities like Noggle, Word Creator, Story Starter, Quick Draw, and more! Grab them HERE.

February Classroom Ideas FREEBIE:

These FREE Valentine’s Day Writing Prompts are perfect to use in your classroom during the month of February! This FREEBIE includes 4 different prompts total. These engaging prompts are great to use as a writing warm-up, for homework, literacy stations, and more! Grab this FREEBIE >>> HERE.

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Kindness Cards FREEBIE

Holidays

What are Kindness Cards?

The holiday season is quickly upon us! Years ago I used to do Elf on the Shelf in the classroom, but had been looking for a way to promote kindness during the holiday season! In comes…Kindness Cards!

Kindness Cards include writing letters to school staff, helping others, saying “Good Morning,” and more.  It’s a great way to promote being kind to others during the holiday season. The digital version even provides options that are great for distance learning or virtual learning.

How can you use them in the classroom?

I use these cards during the month of December in my classroom. Each day I post a new card on the board and we focus on that act of kindness for the day. For the digital version, I add a new “digital” card to our daily slides that we use.

Picture of printable Kindness Cards

Grab your FREE Kindness Cards

Example of Digital Kindness Cards

If you would like to grab your own set of printable FREE Kindness Cards >>> click HERE.

If you would like the digital version of the FREE Kindness Cards >>> click HERE.

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Polar Express Day

Holidays

Picture of train set-up for Polar Express party

One of my favorite days at school is Polar Express Day! When I taught first grade we had a whole week dedicated to the story the Polar Express.  We read the story, worked on comprehension questions, and writing prompts about the book.  Then, the special activity was our Polar Express Day.  Each student wore pajamas to school and got their Polar Express ticket!

Picture of Polar Express ticket and bell

After receiving their ticket, students went out into the hall to board the train.  You can see in the last photo how our hallway was set up like a train station. Our amazing school counselor dressed up as the conductor and punched everyone’s ticket as they boarded our classroom train.  Students also got a bell at the end of the day with the Believe tag on it.

Picture of food - candy canes, donuts, hot chocolate

Now it wouldn’t be Polar Express Day if we didn’t have treats! Students were able to enjoy hot chocolate with candy canes and donuts!  This might have been their favorite part of the whole day.

Picture of Polar Express Movie

We watched the movie throughout the day while sitting on our train pictured below.  I had seen this amazing train idea on Pinterest and just had to create it for the classroom! We covered the table in red butcher paper and created the front of the train with cardboard, butcher paper, and duct tape.

Tables set up like Polar Express train

Since our whole grade level participated in Polar Express Day we also decorated the hall to look like a train station. We used black painters tape for the track (while this looked cute – it is a pain to clean up after) and created railroad signs to put up throughout the hallway.

Hallway set up like train station

So as I mentioned it is one of my favorite days – I always love a good theme and room transformation!

 

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100th Day Birthday Party

Holidays
100th Day Birthday Party Blog Header

The 100th Day of School is a big deal especially in kindergarten and first grade. Last year when I was starting to plan out our celebration for it in first grade I wanted to do something a little different. I know many times teachers have students dress up like they are 100 years old so I thought – why not throw a birthday party for turning 100 years old! It was a hit! See all of the fun we had below…

Birthday Invite

Birthday party invite for the 100th Day of School

About a week before the 100th day of school, I let students and parents know that students could dress up for the day like they were 100 years old. Then, the day before (Day 99 to be exact) at the end of the day I shared the above birthday party invitation with my kiddos. This way they knew something was coming, but still didn’t know exactly what it meant. This was a great way to build hype and excitement!

Decorations

Happy 100th Birthday sign with streamers in doorway.
Birthday tablecloths and decorations in classroom.

Most of the decorations that I got for our birthday party were from the Dollar Tree. I got balloon tablecloths and fun party centerpieces. We also made some “Happy Birthday” banners and hung up the door sign with streamers. We also made some balloons to hang around the room too! For some fun party decor – check out my Amazon Storefront – HERE.

Photo Booth

Picture of 100th day photo booth with props

I like to have a photo opportunity with most room transformations and I definitely wanted to take pictures of the kiddos all dressed up like they were 100 years old. I wish I could post some of those pictures, but due to privacy I can’t. But, I can tell you that the kids looked super cute! They were dressed up with suspenders, bow ties, wigs, canes, etc. They went all out, which made the day super fun. I wore an “old lady” jogging suit and tried to put baby powder in my hair (but that didn’t work so well). For the photo booth, I put up birthday wrapping paper that I got from Target and then used birthday photo booth props from Amazon. You can find the photo props and more decor on my Amazon Store front…HERE.

Special Treat

Picture of 100th birthday cake

What would a birthday party be without some birthday cake! I ordered this cake from our local grocery store and the kids loved it!

100th Day Stations

For about an hour-ish or more, students were rotating through 100th day stations with their group.

Station #1 – Pattern Blocks – Students were given 100 pattern blocks and they were able to build any kind of creation with them.

Pattern block creations

Station #2 – Write 100 Words – Students were given a paper with lines numbered from 1 to 100. Their job was to go around the room and try to write down 100 different words.

Station #3 – Unifix Cubes – Students were given 100 unifix cubes and could build any type of tower or creation that they wanted.

Station #4 – 100 Lollipop Licks – Students were each given a Tootsie Roll Pop and had to see how many licks it took them to get to the center. I got this cute recording sheet on TPT from Buckmastery – HERE.

100 Lollipop Licks activity

Station 5 – Cup Challenge – Groups were given 100 Dixie cups and had to build the tallest tower that they could.

Special Snack

100th day of school trail mix snack

Another activity that students worked on during the day was creating their special 100th day snack. For this snack, you need 10 different items. Then, each child will get 10 of each of the 10 items and their trail mix will have 100 items in this. This year I used Cheez-Its, Kix Cereal, Cheerios, Pretzels, Raisins, Marshmallows, Goldfish, Gummy Bears, Chocolate Chips, and M&Ms. This activity is always a class favorite!

Math Birthday Party

Place value birthday cake

During this time of year we had been learning all about place value, so Amy Lemon’s Place Value Party fit in perfectly. Students made a cake using place value with a 2-digit number and played Pin the Nose on the Clown with place value type questions. You can find these activities… HERE.

Pin the nose on the clown

100th Day Scavenger Hunt

100th Day Scavenger Hunt

For our special scavenger hunt, students need special glasses to help them see. I make these 100 glasses using the school die cut machine and craft sticks and then students get to decorate them. They can see through the two zeroes and use it to help them with our scavenger hunt. For the scavenger hunt I hide 100 numbers around the room. This year I used stars and numbered them from 1-100. I color coordinated even and odd numbers. Students then use their special glasses to help them find all of the numbers. Then we put them in the correct order in a pocket chart.

For some more ideas for the 100th Day of School – check out my blog post from a few years ago >>> HERE. If you are interested in seeing what items I recommend from Amazon for this transformation >>> click HERE.

100th Day Birthday Party Long Pin