Calendar Time!

What was one of the first things I asked about when I got hired to teach first grade? 

Calendar time. 

I Googled it. I watched some YouTube videos. 

I asked around. 

I think every teacher I asked advised me to use cups and straws to demonstrate place value.   Check.

Someone gave me a boxed calendar curriculum. I actually read the manual.

Anyway, I liked some elements. Some not so much. So this year I made some adjustments and this is what I have:

It's not pretty. I've seen some awesomely cute calendar set ups on a few blogs. But, I don't have space for all the labels and stuff. I have two fake accordian walls, a wall of cabinets, and the white board. The white board is prime real estate. But, it is functional. It works perfectly.

Calendar goes something like this:

Yesterday was day number 37. What number day of school is today?
That's right. I'll write it above our place value cups. What digit is in the tens place? The ones place?
Sweet! ...What on earth does the three above the tens place mean? Clearly, there are more than three straws!
Right! Three groups of ten. 
What does the 8 above the ones place mean?
Yes. 8. 
Lets count our straws....10, 20, 30, 31, 32, ...38.

Then I invite a student up to write 38 in expanded form. After some discussion the student writes 30+8=38 on the white board. 

So the number of the day is 38. Cliff, come write one less, one more. Claire, come write ten less, ten more. Rudy, you're in charge of tally marks. Denise, fill in the tens frames. Theo, write the number word. 

When the students are done we discuss their answers. We notice how one less, one more is really just counting on. We note that in the three numbers in ten less, number of the day, ten more only the tens place changes. 

What do we skip count tally marks by if the gate is closed? Right. 5. Let's count. 
Then I circle groups of five tallymarks as we skip count by fives. 

Next, I call on three students to come write the time to the hour. 

Time to the hour will change to time to the half hour as we progress.

Now we check out the coins I've sticky tacked to the board. These change daily. Today it was three nickels. I ask questions like:
What is the name of this coin?
What do you call the front of the coin?
What do you call the back of the coin?
How many cents is this coin worth?
What can I skip count these coins by?
And my favorite question: How can you tell the difference between a nickel and a quarter?
I like this question because the kiddos giggle when they answer me, "A nickel wears clothes and a quarter is naked!" You may have noticed on the heads of a nickel and quarter the presidents are facing the same way and they both have pony tails. Tricky, tricky. But, Washington doesn't appear to be wearing clothes, while we can clearly see Jefferson's collar.

Then we skip count the coins and a student comes up and writes the amount with the cent sign on the board. 

And then we play Start With/Get To.
Vanessa come draw two number cards out of this us your numbers...tell us your numbers...put the green clip on the first number and the red clip on the second number. 

Then we count on. This day we counted from 26 to 40. Then we trade out the clips and count backwards from 40 to 26. 

We've been using this pocket chart to practice skip couting. 

Lift up the pocket chart to find Our Lost Tooth chart. The kiddos love to write their intials on a tooth sticker and add it to the chart each time they loose a tooth!

How do you do it differently?

Apple Week! Using Schema to Make Connections

Ya'll! Septemember was busy, busy, busy. I can't believe it's officially fall and that October is already underway. Let's catch up :-) 

Two weeks ago we learned about activating our schema and how we can add new schema to our "file". It was September and we've all had apples we started there!

We added our schema to an apple anchor chart. Then, for the next two days we added new schema as we learned more about apples. 

I like to have my firsties write about everything, so we added some of our old and new apple schema to this little apple craftivity from Michelle Hudgeons.

We found time to diagram an apple in our math and science intereactive notebook. 

We also read Arnold's Apple Tree and made this oldy but goody. We used glue and glitter to add snow to the branches, pink and white tissue paper to make apple blossoms, and pinky fingers dipped in red and green ink pads to add apples to our trees. My fabulous partner thought of the ink pad idea and it was soooo much easier than using paint!

And I can't believe I didn't take any pictures but we did an apple tasting! Not just apples, but apple sauce, caramel apples, Apple Jacks cereal, and apple juice too. The clear victor - apple juice is definately the favorite in my class. I voted for Apple Jacks (that was before I began Whole 30). 

Last week we used our schema to make text-to-self connections. We read some Kevin Henkes books including Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse. We used Susie Q's All About Lilly freebie to make Lilly and I cut out purple and white purses so we could write our connection to the text in the purse. 

This week we will be making mental images as we read. It's bat week people! Sooo excited. I'll be back later this week with more on that. 

'til then...