I just bought some new books that I want to use during the first two weeks of school. The thing is, I already have so many books and activity ideas, it's too much! I'm doing my best to choose one for each topic I want them to think about. I'm planning on spending my morning meeting and reading workshop time for the first week and the second week reading stories, having discussions, and doing activities related to community building. I think it's so important. First week Monday - Wemberly Worried - creating class rules Tuesday - I Like Myself - similarities and differences, self portraits Wednesday - Chrysanthemum - accepting others and ourselves, name activities Thursday - The Crayon Box That Talked - working together, creating a class project (crayon box or a quilt) Friday - The Way I Feel - emotions and handling them, Peace Island Second Week Monday - How the Butterbees Came to Be - character traits, introduce Caught Being Good program Tuesday - The Little Engine that Could - believe in yourself Wednesday - It's Okay to be Different - It's okay to ______ class book if time! Thursday - May I Please Have a Cookie? - manners - I have a minibook to make if we have time Friday - I have a bunch other books, I can't decide what to use, but I did just purchase How Dinosaurs Eat Their Food at Kohls, and that would fit in with manners, and how we act in the cafeteria! I also have a book I just bought, Cookies: Bite Sized Life Lessons, I think it's called, that I may read the next Monday during morning meeting, and each day following during morning meeting we'll have a discussion on one page in the book (fair, respect, generosity, etc). That will carry on for a couple weeks. I guess then on the third and fourth weeks, we will do a unit on nursery rhymes. During this time I'm sure I will be doing a lot of testing too to get their reading levels. Then the fifth week, we can start getting into reader's workshop, how to choose books, expectations, minilessons, etc. Sorry this is so long. I guess my question is, do you think I'm spending too much time on this? How much time do you spend on community building and character ed in your classroom before you jump into the curriculum?