First Grade Read Aloud Timeline–UPDATE

I am SUPER excited about how the Read Aloud Timeline has taken off with this class!  I have written about how I’ve brought many “big kid” things with me to first grade, and how my firstie friends have taken them and run!  So as I was putting yet another timeline image on our wall, I realized it was way past time for an update.

I believe that when I first wrote about our 1st grade version of the timeline we had finished around 9 or 10 books.  As of late last week, we filled up the whole wall!  We have (at least as of today–and the number changes very quickly around Rm. 202) 20 books completed!

CAM01884This chunk has been completed just since January:

CAM01885I know you can’t tell the titles because the writing is too small in the picture, but we’ve become big fans of both Baby Mouse and the Lunch Lady, as well as enjoying amazing “big kid” titles like The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate and The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo.  Oh, and then there are the 5 Mercy Watson books we’ve roared through in the last month or so, too!  Yep, obviously we’ve come to trust Kate DiCamillo as an author and are now sure that we can read ANYTHING by her and it will be great. 🙂

Because we are such speedy readers in Rm. 202, sometimes we end up with class books and wall pictures that are not yet put together or hung in the right place.  This is just such the case right now: the last two Mercy books are waiting to be laminated and bound.

CAM01886Well, since this is the case, and I’ve got a couple of days til they’ll be ready to hang anyway, I’m asking for your help in solving a little bit of a problem.  And yes, I stress the little part of that problem–it’s really just a decision we have to make.

The trouble is that we’ve filled up the whole wall (and actually all of the space on the 3 walls I have the timeline attached to!), but since the year is not yet over, we’re not finished creating timeline images that need a home.  So we have a couple of options and need some help deciding what to do with our next images.

One option we have is to go down the wall (or sliver of wall) next to the closet, like this:

CAM01887Now, this is a totally viable option, giving us plenty of room to finish out the year filling up that vertical space.  You know what bothers me, though?  The pictures don’t line up with the ones on the wall, and as long as they continue to be horizontal (which the next two are), there is that big piece that isn’t attached to the wall.  Somehow I’m sure someone’s arm will run into it accidentally (or dare I say it, on purpose!) and crinkle it or pull it off the wall.  But–it would totally give us the space we need.

The second option (at least that we can see) is to turn the corner and keep the timeline going along the wall by that bulletin board, like this:

CAM01890Look at all that wall space!  But….it’s practically the ONLY wall in the room that can’t be seen unless you’re standing right there in that very spot by the sink.  And that only happens if you’re washing your hands or getting something from the art center (and you know what’s funny?  See how I didn’t hang self portraits in that spot?  It’s because no one would be able to see them!).  So, again–lots of space, but a downfall.

I know, I know….this is really a small deal in the scheme of the world and not really a big problem (#firstworldproblems for sure!).  But, to a teacher who both appreciates the aesthetic of things and who wants to create the best environment for the learners I spend my days with, it’s teeny things like this that I agonize over.  Silly, I know, but hey–it’s me. 🙂

So will you help me?  In the end it would probably be just as effective to flip a coin or just vote with my class, but I thought I’d ask other (perhaps like-minded) professionals who could help me make the decision based on how they’d solve the same dilemma in their own spaces.  Please?  Pretty please?  🙂  Thanks in advance!


Hey, friends!  We need your help!

Remember when I posted the other day about Stray Rescue and we’re working with them for our service-learning project?  Well the project is just about to be in full-swing.  Why not yet?  Because like I said, we need your help!

We have decided to make and then sell dog toys and treats, because when Connie came from Stray Rescue, she mentioned several times that the thing they need the most is MONEY!  We threw around several ideas about how to help, and decided to merge our overall class craftiness with their need for money and are going to sell our handiwork to our Robinson friends.  So we’ll need your help with that (once Sale Day comes up on April 28), but right now we need your help to gather the materials we’ll need to make our toys.

So…if you know me, or a friend in our class, and have any of these items laying around your house and are willing to let us use them, please get to us ASAP.  We’re going to start creating on Tuesday or Wednesday–hey, I know it’s late notice, so if you can’t work that fast I get it, but we just decided the other day that this was our plan.  Ok, moving on…

Here’s what we need:

For toys–

  • tennis balls
  • rope
  • old jeans
  • fleece blankets (or other fleece material that you don’t mind us cutting up)
  • empty water bottles (16 oz. or so)–no need for lids
  • old socks (adult sizes would work best)

For treats–

  • flour
  • dry milk
  • peanut butter
  • honey
  • oatmeal
  • cookie cutters (dogs, paws, bones, etc)

We’re getting excited about all of this creativity that is about to spring forth in our room, and even more excited about how that will benefit our canine and human friends alike when we can give Stray Rescue our donation!  There are over 400 kiddos in our school, and there is a large population of dog owners (we collected data to find out how many there really were!), so we’ll need to make lots of toys.  The more you can donate the better!

If you can help and you are a parent or friend of a kiddo in our class, just send your goodies in with them to school.  If you are a friend of mine, feel free to contact me and I will figure out a way to get them from you! Add a comment on here or send me an email, Facebook message or Twitter DM.  THANKS IN ADVANCE FOR YOUR HELP!