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Elementary-Teacher-Resources: New Beginnings
December 26, 2010

New Beginnings

New Beginnings – Helping Kids

Right before our break my students sent off a check for $5.40 to “Feed America”.

It was for our November “Helping Kids” project.

My boys and girls earned $0.10 each time someone caught them being helpful and kind.

You wouldn't think that $5.40 would change the way a class worked - but it did!

Children like to be noticed for the good things they do, but they like helping others just as much.

This project has really brought my classroom together for a common goal.

If you are interested in starting a “Helping Kids” project in your classroom, feel free to sign up for free and join us in this fun, easy classroom building project.

It would be a great way to have a new beginning to your school year!

New Beginnings – Daily 5

Once we head back to school, it will be time to review the Daily 5.

I take the first week back to recreate our “I-Charts” with the kids. This time they will create them as a group. I hang these new charts up to help review our procedures.

I also take time to revisit what “Just Right” books are and restock their book bins.

Many of my students make a big jump in reading development in November and December; so January is the perfect time to practice what they should be picking for their book bins.

It’s also a great time to introduce any new centers to the class. The skills needed and taught during the second half of the year are much more intense and will need lots of independent practice.

New Beginnings – Writing

When we climb back into the routine, I will also take some time to clean out our writing folders, keep some samples and start fresh.

Most likely your students haven’t placed a pencil on paper for two weeks and will need a review.

I’m going to use the first week back to revisit some favorite books with great crafts to get them thinking like authors.

This is also the time of the year where we bump up our expectations.

We are going to eliminate some questions and phrases from our world…

“How long is my story supposed to be?”

“How many lines?”

“I can’t write!”


All of these things make me crazy – so we are going to practice how we write until the story makes sense. It needs a beginning, middle and end. It needs to be interesting to read. It needs a plan.

Once we practice all of these, things normally fall into place.

But... the biggest pet peeve I have during writing is “I’m done!”

During Writer’s Workshop you are never “done”. You can edit, rewrite, publish or start a new story.

The kids really think there is a magical place called “Done”, but there isn’t!

New Beginnings – Sale!

Every holiday break I seem to re-invent my classroom. I take this time off to ponder what has gone well, what has just tanked and what can be modified.

I know many teachers that take this time as a “New Beginning” for their class. A time to set new goals, refine tasks and really utilize their students’ growth to a new level.

To help with this rebirth – I’ve decided to offer a 40% discount code for the first 100 purchases made after this newsletter is sent out.

To receive the discount, go to my site and use the code 24181T1J at check out.

I hope that this helps you in your new beginnings!

Check out my podcasts on my podcast blog. They are fun and helpful!

I hope that you have enjoyed this newsletter. Please feel free to email it to friends and family who are teachers or homeschool moms!

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

See you next month!

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