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Ready or Not, Here They Come!

No matter if it’s your first year teaching or your first time in first grade, the first day of school can be INTIMIDATING. In this post, I wanted to share with you some resources I use and my schedule for my first day of first grade! If you’re just joining me in this series, check out Part One and Part Two by clicking on the links! Continue reading

5 Ways to End the Year Peacefully

Between the end of year crafts, snacks, autographs, memory books, talent shows, assemblies, and everything else…this is the first time that I was not a frantic HOT MESS during the last week of school. I hope that you’re not a hot mess right now, either! I wanted to share with you some of the things we do in the last week of school that could help you end the year with fun but as much normalcy as possible! Continue reading

Introducing Attributes in Guided Math


We’re in the final countdown, folks. 39 instructional days until Summer Break and only 9 more instructional days until SPRING BREAK! It’s that time of year when first graders really start to take off!

Because we worked them so hard on double digit addition and subtraction these last few weeks, we were ready to take a break and move into a different type of thinking: geometry. In first grade, we are expected to be able to identify and describe shapes based on their attributes. What better way to introduce this than with some math disguised as some sneaky fun?!

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Double Digit Addition Strategies

This year, my school has decided to put a huge emphasis on what it means to have “number sense” in the primary grades. In order for this to happen, we had to put an emphasis on a few key questions:

  • What does it mean to be fluent?
  • How do we assess number sense?
  • What are the “wish list” strategies that we want kids to come in with at each grade level?

No, we don’t have the answers to all of these yet, but we do have a strong(er) grasp on what we DON’T want to do with our kids.

In first grade – we did NOT want to teach them algorithms that were only going to hinder their understanding as they progressed through the grades. So, as one of my teammates said, “We don’t stack, we go flat!”

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