Calendar Time in Primary is a Beach!

I always loved calendar time when I was in the classroom. In fact, it was the most enjoyable time of the day! If you don’t do Calendar Time in your classroom, you may be wondering what exactly it is. 

Calendar time is a time during the day to come together as a class by the calendar. It is a great way to start the day or transition from one activity to the other. It also helps students because it is part of the daily routine and they know what to expect. 

calendar time

Some of my favorite activities for Calendar Time include: 

  • Singing a song or two. This is such a fun way to let your students show their personality and have some fun. Add in dancing for extra physical activity! 
  • Listen to others. Sharing stories or other important information is a great time to practice our listening skills. 
  • Reviewing days and months. Use your calendar to review the days of the week and the current month. Repetition will have your students reciting it on their own in no time. 
  • Review math skills. Reviewing during Calendar Time feels more fun and less like work. Take this time to review some essential skills you have been working on. 
  • Talk about the weather to help students understand the daily weather and what it means. 
  • Read a story. Select a book that relates to what you are working on that week and read it during Calendar Time while students are gathered close and can easily see the pictures. 

If you are wanting to get it set up for your classroom, I have you covered! My Beachy Calendar Time Resource has everything you need! 

calendar time

This beach-themed decor bundle comes with matching decorations for your set up. It has six resources bundled in one using Hawaii photographs and watercolor clip art. How amazing does that sound?

calendar time

Included you’ll get welcome banners, tropical word wall decor, growth mindset posters, labels, table numbers, center posters, Hawaii photo alphabet lines, name tags, editable classroom jobs, number posters, Where Are We signs, How I Get Home sign, and your calendar set with watercolors and so much more! 

calendar time

Looking for tips for decorating your classroom? Check out my post here!


 

How To Have A Stellar First Day Of First Grade

The school year is wrapping up everywhere so it is time for teachers to start preparing for next year! If you are a first grade teacher, it is fun because school is still so exciting and new to the students. 

The great thing about that is that even though school is still relatively new to them, this isn’t their first experience with it. This means they have a little more confidence and independence than they did in kindergarten.  

Here are some tips for having an amazing first day of first grade: 

  1. Get to know each other! One of the biggest reasons for those first-day jitters is that students aren’t familiar with each other yet. Spend the first day playing some ice breaker games or crafts. You can pair students up for some activities so they can start developing friendships from the start. 
  2. Make sure to cover the rules. They may be familiar with a lot of them because they are likely similar to kindergarten rules, but summer break is a long time so it is always good to reiterate what is expected. Don’t forget to cover rules for the classroom, lunchroom, recess, and hallways. 
  3. Read books about the first day of school. Everyone loves a good book! Reading some about the first day of school is a fun way to illustrate how even though you may be nervous, it will all turn out okay. 
  4. Explain how your classroom schedule will go. Explaining to students what they can expect when they come into school is another great way to ease some of their nerves. Don’t forget to review going-home procedures so they are all prepared at the end of the day. 

After 20 years of teaching, I created an easy and detailed first day of first grade lesson plan! This includes a full day of detailed lesson plans with printables, links, editable plans, suggested plans, ideas, and activities! 

first day of first grade

Here is what’s included: 

  • 31 printables including detailed lesson plans, links, planning checklists, Welcome to First Grade welcome sheet, directions for the icebreaker name game, materials for First Day Jitters, name crafts, a photo poster, an All About Me Home Connection activity, name tags, and certificates!
  • An Editable PowerPoint to easily add students’ names to certificates, crafts and edit your own lesson plans
  • Classroom rules posters
  • Gingerbread Man hunt to find all the important locations at school!
  • Morning greeting and goodbye posters

first day of first grade

Everything you need for an amazingly fun first day of first grade!

Love these ideas but teaching kindergarten? Check out my post here.

first day of first grade

 

 

 


 

Kindergarten Morning Work Activities

Kindergarten is a very big deal for young students. For many, it is the first time they are away from home regularly. While it can be scary, there are ways we can help ease the stress of the unknown for them and show them how fun school can be! 

One way to do this is to establish a classroom routine early on so they learn what to expect. Setting a daily schedule and routine can be a huge relief because they know exactly what happens and when.

 Morning work is a great way to ease students into the daily routine. As soon as students come in the door, have morning work on their desk ready to complete. They can work on their morning work independently while you work on other tasks. This is a great time to respond to parent emails, address student issues, and otherwise prepare for the day. 

kindergarten morning work

Here are some benefits of kindergarten morning work 

  1. It is great for review. While at the beginning of the year, kindergarten students won’t have much to review yet, as the year goes on, you can focus morning work on the crucial skills they need like sight words, letters, and numbers. Circling back time and time again will help increase retention of this vital knowledge. 
  2. It helps with classroom management. As mentioned above, having assignments ready to go when students come in for the day helps free up time for classroom management tasks. Having that time really does improve the flow of the day. 
  3. It teaches independence.  As we all know, students learn so much more in kindergarten than just letters, numbers, and reading. They learn social skills and independence too. Kindergarten students are very young so they have likely not had much experience with doing tasks independently at home yet. Morning work is a great way to teach this. 

Ready to try some morning work? Try my kindergarten morning work packets for August and September!

kindergarten morning work

This no prep morning work resource includes 40 printable pages of meaningful morning work for your kinders! Model it once and then they should be able to work independently each month. 

This packet covers handwriting, sight word practice, color recognition, number sense, tally marks, counting, number lines, and writing numbers. 

Looking for more tips for kindergarten, check on my tips for the first day of kindergarten here! 

Do you assign morning work? Let me know in the comments!

 

First Day Of Kindergarten Activities Your Students Will Love

It’s time to start thinking about the new school year! If you are a kindergarten teacher, it can be especially exciting because you are preparing for a year with brand new students who have never been to school before! 

first day of kindergarten

You are probably exhilarated, and your kids are excited too and maybe a little scared but that’s okay! You are more than prepared for a fun learning experience with lesson plans and activities that will keep your little ones busy every step of the day, right? 

If you aren’t quite prepared yet, that’s okay! I’m here to help. Being well prepared for the first day of kindergarten (there will likely be tears!), will save you so much time in the long run. Your transition times will be kept to a minimum and it will save your sanity! 

Here are some tips for having a stellar first day of kindergarten with your students: 

  1. Make it fun! As mentioned above, a lot of kindergarten students have never experienced school before so, understandably, they will probably be pretty nervous about this new experience. Once they start having fun in the classroom, they will realize how great learning can be! Playing some get-to-know-you games is a great first day of school activity. 
  2. Read some fun books. Find a great story to read together and do a simple craft to go along with the story. You can encourage your students to share what the story was about with their caregivers at home. 
  3. Discuss rules. This one isn’t as fun but it is necessary to make sure expectations are set from the very first day. Make sure to cover classroom rules, recess rules, and lunchroom rules so they know what to expect all day long. 
  4. Review going home procedures. This is a very important piece of information to cover. Going over what each student will do at the end of the day will alleviate some of the stress that usually comes along with that part of the first day. 

To help your first day go off without a hitch, I created my First Day Of School Kindergarten Activities Resource. It includes a full lesson plan! 

first day of kindergarten

Included you’ll get: 

  •  33 first day of school printables (includes detailed lesson plans, links, planning checklists, Welcome to Kindergarten coloring sheet, directions for a fun name game, name crafts, photo frames, A Kissing Hand Home Connection activity, name tags, certificates, and more!)
  • Editable PowerPoint to easily add students names to certificates, crafts and edit your lesson plans
  • Classroom rules posters
  • Gingerbread Man hunt to find all the important locations at school
  • How I Get Home hats

first day of kindergarten

Everything you need for a fun and successful first day! 

first day of kindergarten

What are your favorite activities for the first day of school? Let me know in the comments!

Want some more kindergarten teaching tips? Check out these kindergarten homework ideas!