Thursday, January 29, 2015

Parent-Teacher Conferences

I feel like I haven't blogged in AGES!  This has been one long week, and it isn't even over! As we all know, parent-teacher conference week is insane.  Over the past four days I have worked over forty hours.  I am a tad exhausted, to say the least.  Even though I feel like a zombie, I LOVE seeing the progress my kiddos have made. AND....I love when they see their own progress. Their little faces light right up.

I prepared for almost a week getting graphs completed, writing notes about my kiddos strengths, writing goals for each kid, and thinking through everything I was going to say.  This is keeping it simple for me, but according to my colleagues, this is anything but simple.  I had no idea that I was going over the top because I only have me to compare myself to.

I also love to send home a game that I've made at conferences because I know my kiddos will listen up as soon as I say that magic word. This time, I sent home a vocabulary game that I recently made. Check it out in my TPT store.  Our vocab this year, as I have mentioned in a previous post, is anything but simple.  Any extra practice my students get with these words is fabulous.
As much work as conferences are, I love getting to talk to all my students' parents and get more insight into each of my sweet students. I also love hearing all the things my kiddos go home and tell their parents about me. It is quite entertaining!

Before I get back to watching my guilty pleasures, I MUST tell you the funny of the week.  One of my students earned lunch from me for good behavior.  He came to school a few days later and put some change on my desk.  He told me that this was for the lunch I bought him.  I told him that wasn't necessary and that he earned it.  I gave it back to him and he gave it right back to me.  This went on for quite some time until I finally gave up.  It was only forty cents, but he was so proud giving it to me to pay for the hamburger. (I told his mom and I think she gave me to okay to keep it.) He is such a cutie!  I just love my little, firsties!

Have a fabulous Friday!  Don't be jealous, but I get to leave early tomorrow!  Can't wait for a good, LONG nap!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Missing Addends & Monsters Bingo

This past week we worked on missing addends.  Many of my kiddos really struggled with this concept, so I came up with a game to give us some extra practice.  I made a bingo game where my students start by solving for the missing addends.  While my kiddos were solving the equations, it gave me the time to help out and reteach my struggling learners.  I LOVE any chance I get to work one on one with my kiddos.  I know for all of us finding the time for this is slim, so any chance I get, I take it!

After my sweet kiddos finished solving the equations I passed out a pack of SMARTIES!  I learned my first year teaching that having loads of SMARTIES is essential.  When I give my first graders a pack of SMARTIES you would have thought I gave them all a million bucks.  This is usually the time when I hear, "Mrs. Westwood you are the best teacher EVER!"  It is too cute that a pack of SMARTIES and the chance to play a game gets this response.

As you can see from the picture, this is a concept we are still going to need to work on. :)

So after my kiddos have opened their SMARTIES, without eating ANY of them of course, we can PLAY!

One thing I love to do when we play a game like this is stick the bingo cards in sheet protectors. The students solve for the missing addends using a dry erase marker.  After each round, I have the kiddos erase their board, pass it to another student, and solve the new equations.  This way, we are getting that much needed practice.

Check out my Missing Addends & Monsters Bingo here:
http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Missing-Addends-Monsters-Bingo-1622472