Friday, September 13

What We've Been Up To...

I am so excited to be posting! Feel like it's been forEV.

But I suppose 8 days ago isn't all that bad...considering it's the season of Back to School Teacher Tired for me.

A sore back and swirling brain at 4 am and Doodle Bugs got me motivated to post!  Head on over and link up with her 5 for Friday linky so we can see what you've been up to! I hope to blog stalk this weekend and catch up on what y'all have been doing. :)

Today was Day 9 of school in my neck of the woods and here's a little bit of what we've been up to...

1. We teach Everyday Math in our district and we had the tally practice lesson...I'm not always in love with the way EM introduces something new and doesn't provide much practice...more of a drip...ya gotta trust the spiral, right?

Depending on what's been introduced, I might just spend extra time practicing the skill...and since making tally marks paves the way to counting with nickels and pennies, I love giving them more practice opportunities.

So...we used this page from my Football Frenzy Freebie...

Click {HERE} to get to it...and if you like it, make sure you check out Primary Chalkboard next week for an Apple-tastic Freebie from me and other fun Applicious Posts from my Chalkies.

2. We're also laying the groundwork for Reading Workshop...have made some charts for building Stamina and How Readers Warm well as reminded them about word-solving strategies...
The Reading Strategies are a freebie and you can get to them on this post right {HERE}.

We're at 6 solid, focussed mn of Private Reading...hoping to get to 9 next week! I've been enjoying conferring while they read! We won't be starting Strategy or Guided Reading Groups for another week or two...for now the focus is on individual conferring and it's been so fun!

3. Here's a close up of the How Readers Warm Up chart...which I am tying into my concept of being a STAR Reader (which you can learn more about {HERE}...essentially, it's a pack with the underlying premise of building readers who Study Think Ask Respond...hence the STAR)...

4. After we made that chart I majorly modeled (and wish I video-taped) my thought processes as I warmed up to read this aMAAAAzingly adorable book by Eve Bunting...

Do you KNOW this book???

Well, my class didn't and that made it PERFECT for modeling how we warm up to was such a great lesson I plan to write up a more formal plan for it and YES, I will post it for a FREEBIE...please give me a week or so and then hound me if I haven't posted about it yet.

And...if you teach kindergarten in my school or district...Imma bout to get territorial here (which is actually quite unlike me...sorry in advance!!! Maybe sending you a bag of Pumpkin Spice Latte M&Ms will make up for it???) any rate...if you do teach k in my school/district, please, pretty please don't read this book to your's a first grade "Required Read."

I **might** still be a bit heartbroken over the fact that Charlotte's Web USED to be a first grade requirement and now we have to avoid it because it's now a second grade "Required Read."

K...territorial rant o-vuh!

5. Lastly...I wanna give a plug to my amaaaazing Chalkies over at our collaborative blog, Primary Chalkboard...

Today's post has loads of freebies for you...

IT'S A LINKY!!! Go link up your best freebie, folks! And...snag up some seriously awesome stuff!

By the way...if you scroll through past Chalkboard posts, there's an AWESOME freebie in nearly EVERY post...I promise you won't be disappointed if you hunker down with coffee or wine and sift through the blog.

These ladies are FULL of talent!


Hope you have a fabulous weekend! And...don't forget to link up to Doodle Bugs!


  1. I love that anchor chart and stamina chart! Looking forward to your "formal plan" because sounds like it was a great lesson!
    Happy Friday!
    Aylin :)
    Learning to the Core

  2. I had no idea about the collab blog- on my way. . . with beer in hand! :)
    Learning With Mrs. Leeby

    1. Yay!!!! Hope you loved the posts...more importantly, the beer! :) Hiiiiii, Irene!!!!

  3. 8 days of no posts and day 9 of teaching first grade? I'd say you are well ahead of the game, Lisa Mattes! :)

  4. It looks like your year is off to an amazing start! I love all of your reading charts and can't wait to see all of your apple adventures!


  5. Sounds like a great start to the school year. We used to use Everyday Math in my district and I felt the same way as you. The spiral makes it hard to get the kids to mastery. We now use Math in Focus instead.

    Too bad you can't read Charlotte's Web. I love that book!

    Compassionate Teacher

  6. Found your post on FIve for Friday. Following! Smiles, Jayne
    Smart Kids
    ABCs of Reading

  7. We just introduced tally marks so this is perfect! Our boys will go nuts. Love it girl!

    Also love slowing down their reading and getting them set first. Thanks for sharing your brain :)

    ~Christy & Tammy
    Fluttering Through First Grade

  8. So...I have probably purchased most of your store and am a HUGE fan. Anyway.... I have been blogging a bit and trying out my own take at a few items. I uploaded my first today (FREEBIE!!) and it connects to the new Lucy Calkins writing unit for first grade that I saw you reading in a post last weekend! Check it out if you want!

    Abbey bannon


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