I am about to start my 2nd long term leave in 1st grade in a few weeks. When I did a leave in 5th grade they had a daily math challenge in which they glued into their notebook and solved and then went over at the end of the day. I was in B&N the other day and saw almost the same thing but for 1st grade. Would this be too difficult for them to follow? Glueing it, solving it, etc? It is simple addition, subtraction, problem solving skills.

I'm not so sure to do that in the beginning of the year. I guess I'd have to see it (or know more about it) to make a valid opinion. What would be the purpose of it?

I definatly would not start it right away. I think it gets their brains working and gets them to use higher order thinking/problem solving skills.

Part of our daily routine this year will be a Math and Calendar Journal. I'm just using the composition books you can get at Walmart for 50 cents. The first page will be our birthday graph. Next will be our Lost Tooth Graph (by month like the bday graph) and Lost Tooth Tally Chart. Third will be our "How many days have we been in school" chart, in which they write the number of days.... Then there will be a monthly calendar and weather graph page that also includes How many days are in this month (with boxes for the tens and the ones) and Who has a birthday this month? and Who lost a tooth this month. Following the monthly items will be daily math journal entries. I haven't decided if they will write them out or paste them in yet. We are going to put the first few pages (the yearly and August monthly) together as a class during the first week of school next week. I figure it will help to "train" the students in how to use them.

Lauren, We also had a daily math problem in 5th grade. These problems reviewed material already covered and also provided sample questions for the state testing we do here in MA. Children had to not only provide an answer but also explain how they got the answer. In my opinion all children should be working on their critical thinking skills. With that said, I did see the books at B & N but unfortunately nothing for 1st grade. I'd be curious as to what others think about the book. I'm planning on doing some kind of daily math problem this year in 1st grade and like the idea of putting the problems in a journal.

I would use a notebook for them to solve it in. Maybe you can project the problem on the overhead or write it on the board. I think doing the work is wonderful but i think that cutting and gluing is a waste of time.

They wouldnt be cutting, just glueing. They are already in premade strips that I will just cut for them.

I like all of those ideas! Will you have the students draw every calendar on their own? or give them a premade one?

1stgradeNana: I love what you are doing. Do you have the students make the graphs?? Can you go into more detail on how this is done? Thank you!

I appreciate the accolades, but they are totally unearned, lol. I "borrowed" most of my ideas from Jessica Meacham. She has an incredible (free) site at http://www.jmeacham.com/calendar/calendar.math.journals.htm. I used several of her ideas and just put them together the way I wanted them for my students. I just wish I had been creative enough to come up with all of the things she has!

Such great ideas! I've used math journals in second grade but it was basically some white paper cut in half and bound with the binding machine. I just used them at the beginning of math to preview the day's lesson. I let the kids use markers in them which was a HUGE motivator. They really liked them. I plan to use them again in first grade, but not right away.

We "almost" have our journals ready to go! I pre-cut the half-sheet pages that go on each page for some of our activities, and there are a number of them right at the beginning. I completed one as an example, and am modeling the way EACH and every step should be done, and the kiddos are actually glueing in the pages to their own journals. We have 2 half-sheets to go! I plan to start using them the first school day in September!

I have to agree with czacza... I find that most of the 1st grade teachers have everything cut and glued for their students. When I get them in 2nd grade, their fine motor skills are poor and often have to teach them to cut and glue properly!