Sunday, February 24, 2013

100th Day of School

Hi Everyone,

This week, my students and I reached a momentous milestone - we celebrated our 100th day of school! It was a fun-filled day of various activities that my students really enjoyed. To quote, I remember one of my kiddos saying, "This is the best day of school ever!" to another classmate - adorable. As delightful and merry as it was to celebrate, the day week did not go without its kinks.

For starters, the night before was a long night spent prepping, definitely something I should have done over the weekend instead of trying to do it during the week. A special thanks to College for promoting my procrastination, the terribly useless life skill that I have undoubtedly mastered. The second component of the day that I completely underestimated or overlooked, not sure which yet, was managing all the activities I had planned. During my reflection at the end of the school day, I realized this was an area that I continue to struggle with even after 100 days of teaching. I'm still waiting for it to all come together, and although my patience has endured thus far, it is starting to wear thin (as much as I hate to admit it).

If our 100th day of school was the highlight of the week, the day before our 100th day of school was the lowdark of the week. I had my last formal observation with my principal on Thursday and after my kids had given me so much hope the week before with their behavior, they naturally went bonkers during the observation. My principal left the middle of my guided reading lesson to tend to a handful of students that were completely off-task during centers. Le sigh. I'm not looking forward to what he has to say when we meet for our debrief, but at the end of the day I really tried to look at whatever positive snippets I could take away from the debacle to better my teaching.

Lastly, there has been so much drama going on with one of the kinder classes at my school. As I wrote about a couple weeks ago, my master teacher, Mrs. M, retired and another floating teacher in the district was slated to take her place. Unfortunately, and my condolences really do go out to this poor lady, her husband passed away shortly after Mrs. M retired and she resigned. The classroom has had a substitute teacher since and rumors began to run amok. Well I got an email earlier in the week saying how another kindergarten teacher, Mrs. B, from a different school in the district would be joining our staff and taking over Mrs. M's class. The really bizarre thing about it all was that Mrs. B already had her kinder class at the other school. I still can't quite wrap my head around why an established teacher would just up and leave her classroom in the middle of the year to transfer to a completely different school and pick up the pieces there. Without adding my own speculations to the rumor mill, I will just say that so is the politics and bureaucracy of the public education system. I feel really bad for both kinder classes. Stability is so important for kindergarteners especially and it seems like these two classes have been stripped of that.

This week's post feels like bit of a downer, but these were the thoughts weighing heavily on my mind during today's blogging session so let's just roll with it. Now as the diplomatic side of me would have it, it's time to end my blog on a good note to complete what I like to call the 'Tactwich'. Whenever I deliver news, or in this case write, about anything that's a bit of a downer I always try to open and close with a sanguine note and slip the less positive stuff in between. I've created it in picture form below to illustrate my mad Paint skills - that's right be jealous, haha.

The Tactwich and the Tactwich with extra meat.
100th Day Activities:

My kids love Angry Birds and I found this fun 100's chart coloring activity here that is great for number recognition. I tweaked it a little bit by adding the blue so that students would have experience with all of the numbers instead of just some.

To review shapes and incorporate some graphing students completed this activity during another center rotation.

For patterns, students made their 100th day of school sentence strips hats. First they had to skip count by 10's and put the buses in order then they got to color the buses using a pattern of their choice. I was happy to see some students moving away from simple ABAB patterns and using more complicated patterns like ABBABB and ABCABC.

For something more tactile, students made their 100's necklace out of Fruit Loops and yarn. Make sure to tape one end of the yarn so that it is easier to thread the Fruit Loops. I took a bunch of labels from my local Sprouts grocery store and had students use them as markers for every 10 that they counted. Another activity to promote skip counting in addition to one-to-one correspondence.

Students made 100th day of school glasses and got to choose a crazy straw to hold them up a la masquerade ball style.

During their literacy centers, students got to create a portrait of themselves on their 100th day of school and then what they thought they would look like in 100 years. It was easy to insert our sight word from last week, 'here' and they turned out so great! Here are some of my favorites.

"Ms. Lee, I want to be Abraham Lincoln in 100 years." YES!

Last but not least, I assigned a 100th day of school take-home project. Parents were asked to work with their children and help them collect 100 things and make a poster with them. One area where I have room to grow as a new teacher is my fostering of a stronger school-to-home connection. Being mindful of that, I thought this project was one way to do it. I was SO impressed with some of the creative projects we got. With the amount of activities I had planned for the day we unfortunately ran out of time, but I can't wait for my kiddos to present their posters on Monday. Cereal seemed to be the most popular choice while other objects included beans, clay, q-tips, stickers, and my favorite one of all, finger paint prints! Check out some of the projects below.

An homage to Up. So awesome!

As always, thank you so much for reading and Happy 100th Day of School from Room 13! :)


  1. Little Abe Lincoln is my favorite!!! And I love how all the girls are gonna have a grey bun on top of their heads! SOOOOOO CUTE!!!

    How is literacy week going??

    1. The highlight of the week was when we teamed up with an upper grade and had buddy readers. My kiddos were paired with third graders and it was the cutest thing ever! Everyone had so much fun! :) I want to hear all about your literacy week!