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“It’s fun first grade!”
12 Oct, 2013. 4 Comments. A Day In First Grade, First Grade, First Grade Math, First Grade Science, Kindergarten Math, Kindergarten Science, Science. Posted By: Kristen Smith

In my classroom, we have lovingly named Fridays, “Fun Friday.” On Fridays my students work super hard in the morning taking their assessments (spelling test, high frequency test, math test, and comprehension tests) and then in the afternoon we always have a science experiment, a classroom clean up, and “Fun Friday.” I got the idea from my friend Kristin over at “A Teeny Tiny Teacher” and my students would agree with hers that “Fun Friday” is the best thing ever. If you don’t know about her golden ticket system, you simply must go read about it. Go here to learn all about it! 

Well, the other day, one of my precious students went home and said to his mom, “Mom, it’s not JUST fun Friday, it’s fun every day! It’s FUN FIRST GRADE!” Oh how I could squeeze him for saying that. Talk about making a teacher’s heart happy.

Well this week was another fun filled week. We practiced even and odd numbers, we really worked our tails off learning r-blends, and went crazy for bats and science. (by now, I know that you’re not surprised. ) This week was probably our best week for really reaching “higher level thinking.” I love how the more students practice digging deep into their learning, the more natural it becomes for them to come up with really great questions and search out the answers.

In Math my students explored number lines with odd and even patterns. We used these handy dandy number lines that I threw together quickly last year. {excuse the not so perfect cutting… if I were to be honest, cutting is one of my least favorite things to do!}

 I paired my students up and gave them 20 chips and a number line. Then they had to work together to cover up all of the even numbers and then all of the odd numbers. 
After that, they worked together to find other patterns on the number line. My students counted by 5s, 10s and then they challenged each other with some number factory work. (In the number factory, one student tells the starting number and then says the pattern will be counting by ___s) 
So, they would say something like this, “start on 5 and count by 3s.” 
They loved this and it is such a great way to practice skip counting and number patterns and “counting on.” 
They were totally engaged the whole time and were so excited to do this “work.” 
We also dug deep into our r-blends. {br,dr,fr,cr,str,tr,gr}
We hung up our new phonics flags and practiced hunting for the new blends. 
Every day in class we go over our new and old blends. (we get up and chant them with hand motions) Then we hunt for our sounds using a few different worksheets. The picture shows us looking for “sh.” My students LOVE hunting for the new and old sounds and it definitely makes them stronger readers. It not only helps them quickly recognize the sounds but it also helps them with “chunking out” sounds in unknown words. 
They also love finding them in word searches! 
This week was also fire safety week! We had one of my student’s dads come in to talk to us all about fire safety. Boy did the kids LOVE it. 
 One of our teachers even got to put on his fire suit. (My students said this was their favorite part!) 
She was such a good sport! 
 Then we got to take pictures in the fire helmet. 
 Can you tell whose father it was? {SO SWEET!} 
The day after, we used my dear friend Heidi’s (My Not So Elementary Life) fire safety pack to write him thank you notes! They loved this! 
Last but not least, we are getting so good at making predictions with our science experiments. This was by far our favorite science experiment to date. (Mind you I have mostly boys in my class this year.) 
This week we completed our “mini explosion” science experiment. My students came up with some GREAT predictions and questions before and during the experiment. They worked on this for 30 minutes. {It is seriously a FAVORITE among first graders.}
I loved hearing things like, “I wonder what will happen if we all used our solution in the same spot. Let’s try it!” 
 They worked together so nicely. 
 After we cleaned up, my students debriefed and were in agreement that this was their favorite experiment. They said, “we learned that we could make a bigger explosion when we all worked together!” 
Nothing like a little science to encourage team work! :) 
If you would like this science experiment, along with others to help your students with making predictions, you can get it at my store! Just click on the button below to get taken to my science predictions pack. It is full of classroom friendly experiments and recording sheets! 

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4 Comments
  1. These look like such fun learning activities for your firsties!
    Is there a chance you have that number line available? I love how there are boxes above the numbers.
    Thanks, as always, for sharing your wonderful ideas.

  2. Love the faces of your kids during the science experiment – so cute! We had the local firefighters come to school this week. The principal got to dress up in their suit!

    Sara :)
    The Colorful Apple

  3. Sue -

    Wow, this looks like an amazing week of learning. Thanks for sharing. I love your number line idea.

    Sue
    The Very Busy Classroom

  4. I would LOVE a copy of the number line. I spend many evenings cutting out laminated items. I find it therapeutic! Thanks for sharing. I am off to TPT to check out your science and phonics units.
    Tommie Graham
    spotteddog@austin.rr.com

4 Comments

  • These look like such fun learning activities for your firsties!
    Is there a chance you have that number line available? I love how there are boxes above the numbers.
    Thanks, as always, for sharing your wonderful ideas.

  • Love the faces of your kids during the science experiment – so cute! We had the local firefighters come to school this week. The principal got to dress up in their suit!

    Sara :)
    The Colorful Apple

  • Sue -

    Wow, this looks like an amazing week of learning. Thanks for sharing. I love your number line idea.

    Sue
    The Very Busy Classroom

  • I would LOVE a copy of the number line. I spend many evenings cutting out laminated items. I find it therapeutic! Thanks for sharing. I am off to TPT to check out your science and phonics units.
    Tommie Graham
    spotteddog@austin.rr.com

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