Category Archives: Lesson Plans

Lesson Plans

I’ve decided to try and do my lesson plans on my computer rather than by writing them out by hand each time.  I can type much faster than I can write.  I usually do not make my plans this detailed, but I’m helping my student teacher out. 🙂

Each lesson is 2 pages long. 🙂  It’s the front and back to each day.


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We use Journeys for our reading curriculum and we have a pacing guide for both our Literacy and Math, so that is what you see if you see “Unit ___”.


Magical Monday 5

MagicalMondayBanner copy

So remember last week when I said I was working on a new lesson plan book for myself?  I sat down last week to make the tabbed dividers for my new binder and here’s how I made them:


First I used my label punch (I sell Stampin’ Up! products and this is a retired punch–but I can probably get you one if you’d like it!) I punched out 5 colors, two tabs in each color (red, orange, yellow, green, and blue) because we are in school for 10 months.  I printed a label on my DYMO LetraTag with clear label tape for each month. photo

These are the papers I used.  They are retired Stampin’ Up papers, but are some of my favorites because of the colors, so I decided to dip into my hoard of them and use them. 🙂


Then I used adhesive and stuck the tabs onto the papers at different intervals so they were spaced out and not overlapping with the month before or the month after. Then, I laminated them in my PurpleCows laminator.  The size of the papers was 8 x 9.  I couldn’t get an entire 8 1/2 x 11 sized paper plus the tab through the laminator, so I cut them down a bit to fit. 🙂  photo

Here they are all laminated!  I used 5 mil laminating film, so they are thick and won’t come apart easily when I flip from month to month.  I left about a 1/2 inch of laminating film on the back end of the dividers so that I could punch the holes in them.

I did decide to go with a 3 ring binder instead of binding it myself because after looking at last year’s lesson plans, there are so many documents I have to insert through the year, that I need it to be flexible! 🙂  I got a binder that’s 1 1/2 inches thick, so I won’t have the page turning problems like I did in the 1 inch binder. 🙂

Kristen 🙂

Wishful Wednesday 3

Wishful Wednesday Banner

I saw this idea on Pinterest and I am wishing for one…I’ll get it done, just as soon as I finish my to-do list for the summer (wishing that was done too!).

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Once I get this made (going to decorate it with some new washi tape I just got), I’ll either put it on my desk or I will keep it on my small group table to keep everything right where I need it.  I need to find the right combination of drawers that will work best for me! 🙂  I also have to tell myself that I don’t need to load this organizer up with all sorts of things–just keep it simple with office supplies!

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I’m also wishing for a new lesson plan book.  I’m trying to create my own (here’s the font cover I’ve created, minus the gray border), but I’m having trouble wrapping my head around the lesson plan layout that will happen inside.

Here’s what I used last year:

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I like it…just want something else. 🙂  (And I need to change a few things).

I did find this one from Ladybug Teacher files that I like.

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I like how the day of the week is designated already and how all her plans fit on one page (mine is a front to back setup).  It seems so smart to go ahead and list the permanent things in the schedule to the side because they won’t change. 🙂

I’m going to bind it with my Bind-It-All Machine when I finally figure it all out! 🙂 I’ll also laminate the front and back cover with my thick laminating pouches so that it will last all year. 🙂

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Kristen 🙂

Lesson plan week long grid

I created a week long lesson plan grid after some requests were made for it. 🙂  Here is a picture of it:

You can purchase it for $2.00 on my Teachers Pay Teachers site.  It is 11 x 17 sized, so it is larger than my other lesson plan sheets. 🙂  The days of the week have been pre-printed and there are 7 boxes for easy planning. 🙂

Kristen 🙂


Lesson Plan format available

Hi All!

I had LOADS of e-mails wanting to know if you could purchase my lesson plan template I shared a few posts ago.  I decided to create one that was generic, but still very similar to the one I will use and put it up for sale on my Teachers Pay Teachers Site.  You can go there by clicking the green button on the left. 🙂

I am willing to customize it for you for an additional $1.00, so if you would like that instead of the one I uploaded, please let me know that BEFORE you purchase it on TpT.  I will create it on my computer for you, save it as a PDF and then e-mail you a PayPal invoice rather than you purchasing on TpT. 🙂  After I receive your payment, I will e-mail the document directly to you (within 24 hours).


Kristen 🙂

Lesson Plans

I’ve decided to try a new layout this next school year for my lesson plans.  I’m not entirely sure I like it and may go back to the old way, but I thought I would share it in the event that some of you might like to use it!

I wanted something with bigger boxes (you can search my blog through the Categories tag to find the old one), but I don’t know if I like the idea of having one sheet of paper back to back for each individual day.  I was using a week at a glance type of layout before.  I plan on reworking the old lesson plan sheet and comparing the two.

Here you go…(e-mail me at if you can’t download it and I’ll e-mail it to you!)


Let me know if you like it or not!

Kristen 🙂

Lesson Plan Book

I’ve updated my Lesson Plan Grid for this year:


It prints out on two pages, one for my morning and one for the afternoon portion of the day.

Let me know if you find it useful! 😉

Kristen 🙂

Jack and the Beanstalk

Last week (yes, I’m a little behind) we read Jack and the Beanstalk, which ties in nicely to my seeds and planting theme.  We began by reading Jack and the Beanstalk (the version by Little Golden Books).  When we finished reading the story, we noticed that there was a large note hanging on our Morning Message paper:


The Giant had left us a message and some of his footprints:


The directions in his note were to find things that were the same length, longer than, and smaller than his footprints:




Tuesday, I gave the children plates of beans (the same ones from the previous week that they had already sorted).  This time, I asked them to come to a consensus at their table about which 5 beans that their table would plant and care for.  That was interesting!!  We planted them in clear plastic gloves so that the children could watch them grow and change over time:




I asked the children to make sure that they all planted at least one lima bean and then asked them to consider these questions as they chose their beans. 


Here they are hanging in the window. 


I introduced the word hypothesis today and the children though about what kinds of beanstalks that their various beans would grow. Some one asked if there was a way to see inside the beans. 


Wednesday, I asked the children if they could figure out a way that we could see inside the beans.  They concluded that they knew that seeds opened once they had been planted so one of the things that was used to plant them must be the thing we would need.  We made a list of things (sun, water, soil, love, air) and checked each one of the things off on our list.  We decided that we had planted seeds in soil on Monday, so that was taken care of.  We held our beans up to our hearts and talked to them (love) and although that did not work, it was awfully cute to watch!  We also tried holding the beans up in the air and nothing happened.  Finally, we decided that our experiment to see inside the beans would involve sun and water.  Our hypothesis was that one of these ways was sure to make the beans open so that we could see inside them!


We also decided to use our greenhouse rather than take the beans outside.  Some of the children were worried that squirrels and other animals might take the beans and we would not see what happened to them. 


In the greenhouse.


Soaking in water.

We determined when we would check on them and also wanted to write something down to show what we were doing:



Thursday, we noticed that the beans that were soaking in the water had expanded and cracked open, so we used magnifying glasses to check them out (I was at Science Academy, so there are no photos for this!! Sorry!)


The children then got to plant beans of their own to take home and observe.


Because we had quite a few steps involved in planting these beans, we made a list of “Lab Notes” so that the children could refer back to them if they forgot what to do next:


That was our week last week…now on to this week!

Kristen 🙂


We are reading a big book this week titled “Seeds”.


Because there are a few students who will be leaving early this week to head out on Spring Break, we did not do a Predictable Chart, however we did do several neat Inquiry Based things in Science.  I like to begin almost all my themes/units with a KWL/OWL chart to asses where my children are at and what they are interested in.  We completed the “K” portion of this chart first, then after Observing the seeds (see below) we completed the “O” portion and the “W” (wonder) section.  I like to change the “W” from “What we WANT to Learn” to “What we WONDER” because it gets the children asking questions of the “I Wonder…” variety, something that is holding them back from exploring the world!  At this young age, they know what they want to learn about somethings, but they have no basis to draw from for many Science concepts (some do!!).  Asking “I Wonder…” questions sets the ground work for them to wonder, so ALL of my KWL charts are either KOWL or OWL charts. 





This is the “Wonder” section continued…


I gave each table of children a random container of seeds that I had leftover from previous vegetable plantings:

Here is the result:





Today, Tuesday, we planted all kinds of vegetables in Containers.  My kids took such an interest in the Seeds book that I went and got many of the seeds mentioned in the story.















The next few months (until the end of May) will be spent on growing things/plants/bugs/insects/Monarchs/Jack and the Beanstalk/and anything else that fits in to one of these categories! 🙂


Kristen 🙂

What a week…and it’s only Wednesday

Have you ever had one of those crazy weeks where the gods seem to be working against you?  Yeah–that’s been my week so far and it’s only WEDNESDAY!!!

My poor assistant Pam is out with strep–GET WELL SOON PAM!! and has been out all week so far.  You don’t realize how much you depend upon them until they’re not there! 😦  Actually, we’ve been managing just fine–the kids and I, we’ve done everything I had planned and even more, so I guess it’s not all that bad! 🙂

I’ve been trying to take some pictures for you this week-but as luck would have it, my batteries are dead and can I find my charger–NO!

It’s only the 3rd day this week and we’ve already had two meeting afterschool at my building and then one I volunteered for (to look over this year’s Golden Apple entries for our district).  So that means for the rest of the month, I have 1/2 hour left that I am required to attend in meetings and we’re only on the 4th day of the month!

I am however on top of report cards–only 4 left to do and I still have a whole week and a half left!  This time I’m going to do student led conferences–anyone else done these?  I hear they’re great and I want to give them a try–any suggestions?  I’m going to have a “tour guide” sheet for each student to help them show their families around the classroom and explain what we do in a day, and then I will be there to help and answer any questions.  I thought this would be much more powerful for the students and their parents.

Is anyone else attending NSTA in New Orleans this year?  I will be there and I see some great Inquiry sessions I can’t wait to attend! 🙂

Got to go now…thanks for letting me vent a little!  It’s 8pm and I can get a decent amount of lesson planning done before bed–or maybe just a bath! 🙂

Kristen 🙂

P.S. I’ll try to post tomorrow about our Big Book this week and what we’ve been up to since Monday!

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