Bored with morning calendar

Discussion in 'First Grade' started by Emma35, Aug 5, 2007.

  1. Emma35

    Emma35 Connoisseur

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    Aug 5, 2007

    I have never really liked doing the morning calendar. I am quite bored with it so I am sure the kids will be too! Does anyone have any great things they do with it that will help me liven it up.

    This is what I do:
    Date, day of the week
    place value with straws
    tally mark for each day
    money (penny for each day and trade when we get to the next coin)
    weather

    Please help!
     
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  3. summersun61

    summersun61 Comrade

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    Aug 5, 2007

    Do a daily pattern, estimation jar, hundreds chart (skip counting, add/subtract), daily poem from a Chicken Soup book. My calendar time is boring too. I will be adding the estimation practice and Chicken Soup reading this year.

    Any other ideas?
     
  4. Emma35

    Emma35 Connoisseur

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    We do the hundred chart but I do like the Chicken Soup book idea. Which book do you use?
     
  5. summersun61

    summersun61 Comrade

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    I haven't used the book before but I heard other people used the Chicken Soup with Rice book...?
     
  6. summersun61

    summersun61 Comrade

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    I just saw on Amazon.com they have the book in a Big Book! :)
     
  7. Emma35

    Emma35 Connoisseur

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    I'm going over to Amazon right now to check it out!
     
  8. Emma35

    Emma35 Connoisseur

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    Can't find it...can you post a link to it?
     
  9. summersun61

    summersun61 Comrade

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    Aug 5, 2007

  10. Emma35

    Emma35 Connoisseur

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    Thanks...I was able to do a google search for it. I wonder if Borders might have it...off I go again to check!
     
  11. Miss Kirby

    Miss Kirby Fanatic

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    You need to talk to Young Teacher because she is the calendar/morning meeting GENIUS! haha.
     
  12. 1stferg

    1stferg Comrade

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    Aug 6, 2007

    I make a weather chain through out the year. On a thermometer every 20 degrees is a different color. So what ever the temperature is we add that color link to our chain. Kids love watching it grow throughout the year. I live in a climate where the temps range from 90 to 10 below. If you live in an area with less of a range you could make your colors represent every 10 degrees instead of every 20.
     
  13. JenL

    JenL Comrade

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    i like the weather chain idea...my thermometer is already marked every ten degrees but i had never thought of the chain...great idea!
     
  14. JenL

    JenL Comrade

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    oh quick question...do you look up the weather or do you have a student go and take the temperature outside everyday?
     
  15. 1stferg

    1stferg Comrade

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    I look it up on weather.com. We use the temp right after recess.
     
  16. 1stferg

    1stferg Comrade

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    I have huge paper thermometer that came with our math series, everyday math. I put a strip of magnet tape down the center where the mercury would be and made a little red arrow with a magnet on the back. Kids can put the arrow where it would go on the thermometer and it sticks.
     
  17. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

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    Thank you Miss Kirby!:hugs: I appreciate that even though I tried things through trial & error. :blush: But if anyone has specific questions, I'll be willing to add my :2cents:

    Anyway I do:
    ~ number of days in school
    ~ weather/weather graphs
    ~patterns
    ~temperature (I use weatherchannel.com & a big window thermometer)
    ~daily deposit (counting coins)
    ~What Time Is It Mr. Fox activity w/ analog & digital time
    ~ Today, yesterday, tommorrow
    ~number sentences to make the date or # of days in school
    ~reading of the daily schedule
    ~calendar questions (I have a dr.'s appt. in two weeks...)
    ~Question of the Day- then...Graph Question of the Day
    ~ shared reading of poem of the week
    ~shared writing of morning message
    ~ Peace Circle

    I plan to add this year:
    ~ fractions of a pizza or fractions in a set
    ~ measurement activity of some kind

    My kids totally run the morning meeting...I just facilitate. And I don't do all the activities starting day one!! I add one activity at a time as the school year goes on. But I do shared reading & shared writing starting DAY ONE!!!:D
     
  18. Emma35

    Emma35 Connoisseur

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    Youngteacher what is Peace Circle?
     
  19. JenL

    JenL Comrade

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    youngteacher....what do you do for the shared writing of the morning message?
    i write a letter to the class each morning that we read together and pick apart to find different language type things but i would be interested in writing the letter together.
    fill me in:)
     
  20. Pattie

    Pattie Companion

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    I also felt that calendar time got to be too boring for me. It is repetitive and kids got restless. I thought, if I am bored, they must be too, so I changed it to Writing a morning message, reading a big book, poem (shared reading) and some community sharing, but very short. While this was going on the star of the week changes all the calendar items and I might ask 1 question in the math area. Then we actually went to desks to do ADD math and then silent read when done. So I felt I did not lose any math teaching, the calendar was not simply ignored, but we stopped doing the "yesterday is Tueday, today is Wednesday, etc, what's the weather bear say? etc. I just felt they got it and I move on. So this year I'll do the same for about 8 weeks, then I'll minimize calendar. My kids did well on calendar and place value questions on the test so I know if you do get sick of it and quit, but revisit the skills involved, they won't be shortchanged.
     
  21. read-read-read

    read-read-read New Member

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    Aug 7, 2007

    morning calendar

    So that your morning calendar doesn't become routine, you may want to look into the Responsive Classroom (starting your day with a greeting, an activity, sharing, and morning message). This combined with Every Day Counts keeps it different, educational and meaningful.
     
  22. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

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    Sorry for replying to this thread sooo late.:(

    But anyway, Peace Circle is a time when the whole class gets together in a circle and we discuss character education things and conflict resolution! It is an important part of our morning because it not only gives the kids time to ask their peers for advice on how to deal with problems, but they get to share about something that might be bothering them (home, school issues). So we start off our peace circle by saying our creed:
    "I am a peace builder!
    I pledge to praise people,
    to give up put downs,
    to seek wise people,
    to notice hurts I have caused
    and to right wrongs!
    I pledge to build peace in my home,
    school and community!"
    Then, we start. So basically I choose 2-3 kids a day that might want to share something. And what's even better, I allow the kids to actually tell a classmate about something that may have hurt their feelings or bothered them. So a child might look at Jimmy and say, "I don't like the way you make fun of me when I get a math problem wrong." And I taught the kids to look right back at that person & acknowledge their hurt & to "right the wrong". So that child might say, "Kim, I heard you say that you don't like when I make fun of you during math class. I apologize & I won't do it again". Or, whatever the case. After the kids share what's on their minds or try to resolve their conflicts, we all say, "Throw it in the circle!" and the kids "throw" their issues in the circle & learn to move on.
    After that I might read a book from our character education series & discuss things like cooperation, honesty etc.
    Then we always end with an appreciation for ourselves:
    "I am so smart!
    I am a good friend!
    I lOVE myself!" (they hug themselves)

    I know this is long but peace circle usually goes for about 10 minutes. I hope this explains it and I didn't leave anything out.:)
     
  23. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

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    I started off my year doing morning message & slowly stopped doing it because I didn't like way it was well...getting boring!:blush: So I vowed to upgrade it a bit and I am doing a morning message as shared writing in a way that the kids tell me what to write, instead of the teacher writing something that the kids have no involvement in. I thought about this a long time & I decided that the morning message would mean more to the class if the class has a hand in writing it. Also, my school is all about "Balanced Literacy" and so many teachers complain that there isn't enough time to include all the components of a balanced literacy classroom, so I thought that this would be a great way to kill two birds with one stone! I researched this and found the WONDERFUL book about doing morning message as shared reading. It's called Getting The Most out of Morning Message. Here's the link:
    http://www.amazon.com/Getting-Morni...2306307?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1186543662&sr=8-1
    I love this book and I got so many good ideas! So a morning message may look like this:
    "Today is Thursday. We have Art today. Jessica thinks that the seeds will begin to germinate today! Michael says, "I know all of my multiplication facts!" We will continue learning about how to make inferences while we read." (Just an example).
    But that is how I do my morning message. Not like a letter to the kids. You can still discuss punctuation, quotations, long vowels, capitalization etc. with doing the message together & maybe having the kids do an independent activity in a center with the message. Also, keep in mind that shared writing is different than interactive writing in that in shared writing, the teacher is the scribe, and the kids dictate what to write. In interactive writing, the teacher and the students share the pen. So they have a hand in what the message says & how it is written. Whew! I hope this is not too much.:)
    But I also do shared reading in the mornings as well. And I do interactive writing in the afternoons as like a "wrap-up" activity of our day. Any other questions, just ask.:up:
     
  24. Emma35

    Emma35 Connoisseur

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    Youngteacher thank for explaining it. I think I'll try the peace circle. Did you think that up on your own?
     
  25. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

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    No, actually I got the name of it from a classmate of mine. And I just made it my own. I think each group of students are different so I decided that my kids needed more conflict resolution stuff along w/character ed. stuff so I do both. The creed I actually got from a teacher website that I can't remember right now but I liked it and it sounded like something that my kids needed to remind themselves. :love: But the "throw it in the circle" idea I made up on my own just to teach kids how to acknowledge their problem, find a way to deal with it and/or make it right, then throw it away (move on). I think that is so important. (not to hold grudges etc.)
     
  26. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

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    Oh, and the whole settling conflict routines etc. are my ideas. Good luck with trying this!! I'm sure it will work wonders for behavior problems and/or self-esteem issues in your class.
     
  27. JenL

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    thanks youngteacher for your great explanation and book suggestion!
    are you going to start the year this year with the shared writing of the morning letter?
     
  28. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

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    No, actually I'll probably start off writing it myself just to get the kids used to the routine of reading the morning message. And then gradually get them used to how a morning message should be written and then I will introduce it as shared writing. So I'll probably start the actual shared writing of the morning message around the third week of school. But I will do many shared writing activities throughout the year, not just as morning message like a shared writing of the first day of school, about a read aloud, on a science lesson etc. That's the great thing about this book. It gives you suggestions on many ways to implement shared writing!!!:)
     
  29. firstgradeteach

    firstgradeteach Comrade

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    I have been having the same problem! I am still in the middle of making changes. One thing that I added that is working well is using a deductive riddle of the day. The students love figuring out the clues! I think it is through Creative Thinking. I also started having selected students during m orning work fill in the pattern, weather graph date etc. Then during the meeting the whole class checks their work. I'm not sure if I like this or not... but it makes a quick meeting and to the point! I also bought the write on graphs. There is a different grpah every week and the students like looking at a different kind of graph and question every week that they answer instead of the same old weather graph every day. I hope this helps! It is still a never ending quest for me!!!!!
     
  30. terptoteacher

    terptoteacher Connoisseur

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    Along with every thing else, I....

    I count the days with smiley face stickers where I write the number. The kids post it as we say "smiling our way to the very last day'

    We sing the days of the week song. Or other songs.

    We do math collection boxes from EM where the kids have to show me different ways to show a specified number. ex. tally marks, the word, the number, pictures, number sentences...etc.

    On our morning message, I have the kids come up to the board to circle high freq words, letters of the day, rhyming words--whatever we're studying.

    I go around the group and if they have any "head line news" to share, they can. It's meant to be a quick blurb of something interesting so that they aren't rushing up to me in the morning to tell me about a loose tooth or a new puppy....

    I teach them sign language or visual phonics.
     
  31. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

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    Have you ever thought of doing a "Graph Question of the Day"?? It's a way to have the kids read as soon as they come into the door and at the same time learn about graphs/math concepts all in one. And its a good discussion topic for calendar math time. (Ex. how many people chose X? or why did you choose that way?)
     
  32. firstgradeteach

    firstgradeteach Comrade

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    That is a good idea! I already have a question of the day they read and place their name under yes, or no. Answering a graph of the day would be a nice change. I already have their magnets made, so just adding different headings should be easy! Thank you for the suggestion!!!
     
  33. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

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    I just bought this pocket chart to do my questions of the day:
    http://www.eaieducation.com/530561.html
    It's not cheap but I like how I can change the question every day and they can just put their names/pics in the column they choose. I just want them to be reading and thinking as soon as they walk in the door. I'm kinda excited about this!
    This website has some great questions & print outs!
    http://www.jmeacham.com/graph.of.the.week.htm
     
  34. firstgradeteach

    firstgradeteach Comrade

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    Sep 26, 2007

    Youngteacher226, You are the best thing since sliced bread! :-D

    You remind me of myself... lol... my colleagues call me a teaching dork.

    Thanks so much for the awesome resource!!!! I ordered the pocket chart, it will make my life a whole lot easier! The other website is also amazing. The creators spent a lot of time preparing all of the information!

    Thanks again for all of your help!
     
  35. teach24iam

    teach24iam Comrade

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    Sep 26, 2007

    A few things I used to do, maybe not everyday, but on Mondays would pose a "question of the week" to the children, and post their responses on a Bulletin board. For example: why is the sky blue....and post their responses...Or my favorite....etc...etc..the parents LOVED reading their responses. during morning circle we also did our sight words, or played some kind of review game from something the day before..I also tried to get the kids to remember what they did the day before...Speaking of memory..another thing I used to do, was ask the children a question...what did you have for dinner...what did you do last night..then ask the other students what each had..it was a fun way to check their comprehension and listening skills..it really worked well.
     
  36. cait21

    cait21 Rookie

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    Sep 26, 2007

    Great ideas everyone... I'm glad I'm not the only one who bot bored with Morning Meeting!

    *Just a thought = I added a "Daily Reporter" and "Meteorologist" for the day. I got a cute microphone, and they sit in special seats.. and they basically run morning meeting for the day. It's fun for the kids, rather than having me blabbin'! haha
    Also, as the kids begin to develop their writing a bit more, I will start doing a "daily report," which is one sentence the reporter might tell us about his/her day. Then I will have 2 editors to fix the sentences.

    Thanks!
     
  37. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

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    I am a teaching dork!!!:lol::toofunny:I sit up late at night on the weekends and just google EVERYTHING that has to do with teaching. I am a literacy nut...so I'm always trying to find ways to incorporate literacy in everything we do. Just during this summer alone I have spent at least a couple hundred bucks on teacher resource books and things for my classroom! I can sit on A to Z until the sun comes up just soaking up every bit of information.
    You got the pocket chart at a good time, it just went on sale. :up:

    Good luck with doing this! Me and you can be "dork sisters" and bounce ideas off each other, stay up late, plan for work, read resource after resource and eliminate our social lives.:lol:
     
  38. bonneb

    bonneb Fanatic

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    Sep 26, 2007

    Lots of great ideas and THANK YOU for having the guts to bring up the "b" word!! Calendar time just stinks! I have not enjoyed it for several years, in fact, it is a big hassle and starts our day off wrong. I am going to use some of these ideas.

    One thing we do that I feel good about is singing at the morning meeting/calendar time. I learned a great John Farrell song this summer - "One by One." It is all about counting our blessings. I think you could use the chorus in public schools also. It is a beautiful song and it calms everyone down. There are other songs that we use also. I vowed to bring music into the classroom on a daily basis this year, and so far, so good. This group is insane about music.
     
  39. Miss Kirby

    Miss Kirby Fanatic

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    Sep 26, 2007

    Our morning meeting time includes so much, the actual calendar portiion takes like five minutes. We do...
    Greeting
    Sharing (Bee of the week shares, but I really want to have students share verbally, I just don't know how I'd fit it in)
    Calendar (days of the week/months of the year songs, add the calendar date, yesterday, today, tomorrow, add a place value straw, counting by ones and tens, writing the date, extending a pattern)
    Letter Chant (letter/keyword/sound, and sign language)
    Shared Reading (song or poem on chart paper)
    Shared Writing (morning message)
     
  40. Miss Kirby

    Miss Kirby Fanatic

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    Sep 26, 2007

    OH I also started this week, reading this book, Cookies: Bite Size Life Lessons. Each day we'll read a page and discuss how we show each thing in our own lives at home or at school. We've done cooperation and patience so far.
     
  41. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

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    Sep 26, 2007

    Miss Kirby, I'm so glad you changed up your calendar time a bit! I remember we were part of a thread on this topic before. ;)
    How is shared reading and shared writing going every morning?
     

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