Monday, September 1, 2014

First Week Fun!

Wow! What a great first week back to school! This week was a great start back to what is to come this school year. I was so proud of how all my students got right back into the groove of things.

In New England we had a pretty cool summer this summer, except on the first week of school. This week we finally hit 90 degrees and boy was it hot! The kids did great and did not seem to mind the warmer weather. This year we are all starting to see the leaves beginning to change. We won’t complain about warm days because we only have 3 months of this weather.  

During our first week of school we practiced our routines, procedures, and really focused on what 3rd grade will look like this school year. I did not “loop” per say, however I did move up with the grade. Last year I taught 2nd and this year I am in 3rd. It has been great having students already know each other and myself. They are settling right in.

I was searching over the summer some rules that were simple and to a minimum. Together as a class we made a t- chart comparing the teacher’s job and the student’s job in the classroom. From there we created our rules. I found a great source on TPT that had an acronym for the rules. I said they were easy to “LEARN” and we went from there.
        L- Listen and follow directions carefully
        E- Enter and Exit the room prepared
        A- Always do your best
        R- Respect others and yourself
        N- No Excuses!

I have 2 keywords I want to focus on this year in 3rd grade. Those 2 words are RESPECT and RESPONSIBILITY. These rules I believe cover both of those key words and will be our theme for the year.
One way I will be focusing on RESPONSIBILITY this year is by having the students turn in their work into the “Reflection Bins” that was posted on a previous blog. This week we practiced using the bins and the students took to them quickly. They enjoy underlining there name. I believe the students will better understand each basket throughout the year.

I will also be giving the students an opportunity to earn a homework pass. Each night 3rd grades in my district are asked to read for 20 minutes nightly. They will keep a log and will turn it in daily. They will also be asked to have 30 minutes (10 minutes per grade level not including reading) of math, science, or social studies nightly. They will turn this in as well. If the entire class turns in their homework they will earn a letter in the word HOMEWORK. Once the word is completely spelled out each student will receive a homework pass that is good for one assignment. They must staple the pass to the assignment they are turning in.

To encourage my students to show respect for themselves and others I will have them fill a jar with marbles. The dollar tree does sale 50 marbles for $1.00. Trust me I looked everywhere and that is the only place I seemed to find them.  They will earn a marble to place in the jar and once the jar is filled to a line we will earn free choice on Go Noodle. If you have not discovered Go Noodle log into the website and look around. It is a great tool. We explored the site in my classroom on Friday and I look forward to using them as brain breaks, in morning meetings, and as a reward.

We had so many fun activities this week and I will be posting lots of pictures and links in the coming week. Thanks for taking time to read my blog and have a great beginning of the school year. 

Miss Stetson


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