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October Resources

It feels like we just started school, and already we're looking at October in the not-so-far distance. 


October Resources: Here are several resources, including a few freebies, to help your students learn with seasonal fun! (Fire Safety Week, autumn, football, and Halloween!)

October brings fall, Fire Safety Week, football, and, of course, Halloween!

Brain research tells us if the children can make a connection with their learning, then learning will happen. I find most children can easily make a connection with special days and sports, which makes them more enthusiastic about learning! In face, I'm banking on their enthusiasm, and have plenty of resources to celebrate learning and building skills, in a fun way!


Teachers can project these questions as the children arrive in the morning in order to get them thinking about the day. These also can be used for daily writing prompts.
 
October Resources: Here are several resources, including a few freebies, to help your students learn with seasonal fun! (Fire Safety Week, autumn, football, and Halloween!)

The above resource contains a free link to this Boom Learning Digital Resource: October General Knowledge Trivia Questions and Enrichment. These are great for your fast finishers and those who need a little something extra!
 
October Resources: Here are several resources, including a few freebies, to help your students learn with seasonal fun! (Fire Safety Week, autumn, football, and Halloween!)

Here's a little something to maintain positive communication with parents: October Parent Communication Brochure
 
October Resources: Here are several resources, including a few freebies, to help your students learn with seasonal fun! (Fire Safety Week, autumn, football, and Halloween!)
 
In an attempt to "fit in" more Science and Social Studies concepts, I've looked over my grade level College and Career Ready Science and Social Studies Standards, and found ways to squeeze these concepts into my day. Most of the work is done, all you have to do is print and go! I even have a S.T.E.M. activity with an October theme! Check out this resource here: Science and Social Studies Activities for October.
 
October Resources: Here are several resources, including a few freebies, to help your students learn with seasonal fun! (Fire Safety Week, autumn, football, and Halloween!)
  
Check out this freebie sample here: Bats Informational Mini-Book
 
October Resources: Here are several resources, including a few freebies, to help your students learn with seasonal fun! (Fire Safety Week, autumn, football, and Halloween!)

Here's a freebie to get the kiddos thinking about Fire Safety: Fire Safety What-If task cards.
 
 
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Fire-Safety-What-ifs-159688?utm_source=October%20Blog%20Post&utm_campaign=Fire%20What%20Ifs

It's fall in New England! There are so many beautiful changes here that make it one of my favorite seasons:  warm days, crisp nights, football, and the beautiful fall colors on the trees.  To make your life (and mine) easier, I've combined important concepts with fall ideas in these Fall No Prep Activities!
 
October Resources: Here are several resources, including a few freebies, to help your students learn with seasonal fun! (Fire Safety Week, autumn, football, and Halloween!)

One of the best parts about Fall in New England?  Football! I've got plenty of Football Resources! Just click the images for each link!
 
October Resources: Here are several resources, including a few freebies, to help your students learn with seasonal fun! (Fire Safety Week, autumn, football, and Halloween!)
 
Here's a freebie from the set above: 
 
October Resources: Here are several resources, including a few freebies, to help your students learn with seasonal fun! (Fire Safety Week, autumn, football, and Halloween!)


October Resources: Here are several resources, including a few freebies, to help your students learn with seasonal fun! (Fire Safety Week, autumn, football, and Halloween!)

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Adding-and-Subtracting-Tens-Football-Themed-BINGO-Game-301248?utm_source=october%20blog%20post&utm_campaign=touchdown%20math

October Resources: Here are several resources, including a few freebies, to help your students learn with seasonal fun! (Fire Safety Week, autumn, football, and Halloween!)

October Resources: Here are several resources, including a few freebies, to help your students learn with seasonal fun! (Fire Safety Week, autumn, football, and Halloween!)

Enjoy these October Resources!


October Resources: Here are several resources, including a few freebies, to help your students learn with seasonal fun! (Fire Safety Week, autumn, football, and Halloween!)



My Secret Ingredient to Open House Success

I've been through lots of Open Houses.  The purpose of the Open House is usually to let parents know what's going on in school. There are loads of blog posts about setting up your classroom, scavenger hunts, parent stations, brochures, and presentations.
 
My Secret Ingredient for a Successful Open House: There are plenty of great Open House ideas out there, but this one will have everyone feeling great!
 
I do all those things, leave plenty of things for parents to take with them and get to know my classroom and my procedures.
 
But I do something else that seems to be an added extra that makes a difference: 

I play happy music!


You know, that kind of music that just makes people feel good. 

I got this idea years ago when I went to an all day conference, and was walking into my "mid afternoon" seminar with dread: it's a tough time of day, and I was feeling like I'd prefer to take a nap.

When I walked into the room, the presenter was playing "happy music". I don't remember the specific song, but I remember it made me feel like moving.

I immediately felt a smile on my face, and I looked around the room and everyone else was smiling and moving to the music. 

Research tells us music can affect our feelings. 
So I play "happy music" to help people feel good about my classroom.


THIS POST has a freebie list of song ideas to download!

It works!

What music makes you feel happy?


My Secret Ingredient for a Successful Open House: There are plenty of great Open House ideas out there, but this one will have everyone feeling great!

Ten Freebies for Back to School!

Yes, you read that right, that's a full ten back to school freebies!
Ten Freebies for Back to School - These include parent communication, brain breaks, Science, Social Studies, literacy, math and team building.freebies for second grade.  

These are  some of the things that always help me through those first busy of weeks of school! 
 
Ten Freebies for Back to School - These include parent communication, brain breaks, Science, Social Studies, literacy, and math freebies for second grade.

Here's a freebie to help organize your literacy centers, including what the children do when they're not with you!

 
Ten Freebies for Back to School - These include parent communication, brain breaks, Science, Social Studies, literacy, and math freebies for second grade.
 
We all know those children who struggle to learn sight words. This Research Based Freebie will help!

 
Ten Freebies for Back to School - These include parent communication, brain breaks, Science, Social Studies, literacy, and math freebies for second grade.

 
Here's a great way to keep communication open with parents, and give them some information that will help their children be successful!


Ten Freebies for Back to School - These include parent communication, brain breaks, Science, Social Studies, literacy, and math freebies for second grade.

This system has helped many children master their basic math facts. This freebie is the first of 8 research based, brain friendly levels toward math fact fluency.

 
Ten Freebies for Back to School - These include parent communication, brain breaks, Science, Social Studies, literacy, and math freebies for second grade.

Have your students mastered addition and subtraction facts? Move them on to multiplication and division! As with the addition and subtraction facts above, these are research based and brain friendly. This freebie is the first of 8 levels toward multiplication and division fact fluency!
 
 
Ten Freebies for Back to School - These include parent communication, brain breaks, Science, Social Studies, literacy, and math freebies for second grade.

This freebie is a great way to start the year in Science and Social Studies.
 
 
Ten Freebies for Back to School - These include parent communication, brain breaks, Science, Social Studies, literacy, and math freebies for second grade.
 
 
Looking for some fun ways to get the children comfortable with each other and learn to work together? These Team Building Games are very popular!

 
Ten Freebies for Back to School - These include parent communication, brain breaks, Science, Social Studies, literacy, and math freebies for second grade.
 
I use these tools as a "school office" with my students. These hands-on tools help children become independent learners!
 

 
Ten Freebies for Back to School - These include parent communication, brain breaks, Science, Social Studies, literacy, and math freebies for second grade.

 
Here's a fun way to get the kiddos thinking about their learning and how they can take charge of their learning.

 
Ten Freebies for Back to School - These include parent communication, brain breaks, Science, Social Studies, literacy, and math freebies for second grade.
This one will help the kiddos get all those summertime wiggles out!

If you find these freebies useful, I'd love if you left some feedback!

I hope these freebies make your teaching life a bit easier!

Ten Freebies for Back to School - These include parent communication, brain breaks, Science, Social Studies, literacy, and math freebies for second grade.


 

 





My First Day of School Promise

Every year, I sit down with my brand new class and have a little chat about why we come to school. My second graders figure it out right away: we come to school to learn.

My First Day of School Promise: Ever since I can remember, I've made this promise to my students on the first day of school. It's a win-win!

That's when I make my yearly promise. 

I'm very dramatic when I make the promise. I include dramatic pauses, and I make the same gestures whenever I say it. 

I move my right hand outward as I say the first part, then I move my left hand outward as I say the second part. It goes like this:
My First Day of School Promise: Ever since I can remember, I've made this promise to my students on the first day of school. It's a win-win!

These phrases are used all year long, and I repeat the gestures each time. After a while, I don't even have to say the words, I just do the gestures, and the kiddos realize they need to put the effort into their learning.

Of course, I make a point to keep that promise!

My First Day of School Promise: Ever since I can remember, I've made this promise to my students on the first day of school. It's a win-win!



Science and Engineering Practices

After spending time studying the Next Generation Science Standards, I wanted to share the Science and Engineering Practices.
 
Science and Engineering Practices: These are part of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). This post explains what they are and how we can interpret them in relation to STEM.
 
After several years with Common Core, I'm sure you'll remember the Standards of Mathematics Practices. If you recall, these practices apply to all grade levels, and all math learning. 

The Science and Engineering Practices are straight from the Next Generation Science Standards. The whole appendix dedicated to these practices can be found HERE. As with the math practices, these Science and Engineering Practices apply to all grade levels. Here they are:
Science and Engineering Practices from the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).

HERE's a nice article I found that discusses each of these practices from the science and engineering point of view, for the different levels from Kindergarten to Grade Twelve. 

As I discussed these practices with my STEM Innovation Network, we came to the same conclusion: 

These aren't just Science and Engineering Skills, they are LIFE Skills!


These are the skills we should be teaching our students.

Even if it's not on the test!

These practices can be embedded in many activities across the curriculum, can't they? 

As a second grade teacher, our priorities are building the foundation: teaching the important skills of reading, writing and math. (As they say: K-2 Learn to Read, Grades 3 and up, Read to Learn!)

Science and Engineering aren't a priority in the classroom yet, but it's a strong area of interest for the kids! These practices are something we should be sharing regularly when we can fit them into our day.

How do you embed these Science and Engineering Practices into your school day?  

Science and Engineering Practices: These are part of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). This post explains what they are and how we can interpret them in relation to STEM.

Your Fantastic Elastic Brain!

This is an awesome read for the first day of school!

 
Your Fantastic Elastic Brain! This is a great book for starting the school yea! Plus, there's a freebie to accompany the book and get to know your students at the start of the school year!

Your Fantastic Elastic Brain by JoAnn Deak, Ph.D is appropriate for kids K-3.


If you've ever read my blog before, you'll know that I am absolutely fascinated by the brain and how it works. This book explains how the brain works in kid-friendly language! 

It tells the specific parts of the brain and the specific jobs they have, and how each brain is different, which makes us all uniquely different. 

I particularly love the part that discusses things that kids have learned, such as playing soccer, that were hard at first, but with practice, got easier! They might have even made mistakes, but the mistakes helped them learn!

If that's all it were about, this book could be used any time of year. The reason this makes a great beginning of the year book is because it tells the reader they can stretch their own brain! 

Who wouldn't want to stretch their brain? 

Isn't that our job as teachers? To stretch their brains?
(I refuse to believe that our job is to have the kiddos score well on tests!)

I feel it's our job as teachers to teach the children to be better learners,  and to stretch their brains as much as they can!  

That leads me to this freebie, based on this awesome book.
Your Fantastic Elastic Brain! This is a great book for starting the school yea! Plus, there's a freebie to accompany the book and get to know your students at the start of the school year!

It has some activities to let the children tell what's already in their brain, a chance to challenge their brains a bit more, and a few coloring pages to give them a chance to think about their brains! See the image or see HERE for the link to the freebie! Enjoy! I Can Stretch My Brain!

Your Fantastic Elastic Brain! This is a great book for starting the school yea! Plus, there's a freebie to accompany the book and get to know your students at the start of the school year!
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