Sunday, November 18, 2012

Change of Grade Level

I was told on Friday what grade I'll be teaching next year and boy and I am terrified! I woke up last night in the middle of the night just thinking of how **hard** it's going to be and whether or not I'll be any good for the kids. 

I was also thinking of the teeny, tiny classrooms the grade level is in and the weirdness of them! I guess you've never heard classrooms called 'weird' before but they really are! One wall is on a diagonal in all the rooms, there is a little 1m x 1.5m little hallway type thing at the front of the room (what to put in that????). There is only one small bulletin board and NO wall space! 2 walls are glass sliding doors and windows from almost the roof to floor, one has the interactive whiteboard/1 small whiteboard/and the little hallway and the last side has one of those opening/closing concertina doors (that doesn't close all the way mind you so I'll be able to hear the noise of the class next door and vice versa). There is an office for the teacher - but that is a box that comes into the classroom space  and you guessed it, has glass windows from the top to halfway to the floor for the teacher to see out. We do have a kitchen to share between the two classes and a storage room! Yippee, I'm very excited about that! I haven't had one since my first year teaching. 

I know some of my Aussie friends are probably thinking it doesn't sound too bad. I remember some of the older classrooms I was in during my uni pracs and none of them had kitchens or storerooms. I guess because our school is new (only about 6 or so years old now) I've been a little spoiled! But the thought of setting up this weird shaped classroom is daunting! It's also much smaller than my demountable (portable) so I'm not sure if my things will even fit in when desks take up pretty much all the space!

Oh, by the way, I'm going to First! Term 1 of Grade 2 is always soooo very hard for me but continues to get better as the year progresses and as the kids mature a bit. The thought of those kids being a year younger is making me have palpitations! We have a step-up day in a few weeks (so the preps/kinders) will come up to their Grade 1 teacher. I guess I'll see what I'm in for then!

I'm on the lookout for Grade 1 blogs and great TpT products so I can start to get ready over our Summer holidays. Any suggestions (your own or ones you have used)? 

29 comments:

  1. I think you should look at Deanna Jump's materials...she has a blog and is on TPT. As well, look into Babbling Abby's blog and Michelle Oaks' blog. I don't teach first and I follow them because they are wonderful teachers who really understand what they are meant to get their little ones to know.

    Good luck!
    sherry-matheson.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks for the suggestions Sherry. I actually follow all of the blogs already, but I think I'll go back and look at them with a new set of eyes since I'll be teaching the little ones. Thanks!

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  2. I completely relate to your overwhelming feelings about moving to a new grade!! I taught 3rd grade for 6 years and was told I was moving to 1st! I had all of the same emotions as you describe here. Moving to such a younger grade scared me to death. More work to prep, less independence, teaching students to read and write...YIKES!!

    I wasn't sure if I could do it because I had NO experience with the little ones. This is now my 3rd year and as the years pass I feel more comfortable.

    I'll pass on something a fellow teacher said to me. "A GREAT teacher can teach ANY grade." This really helped me to move on and feel more confident in my ability. I can't wait to see what you begin posting.

    Check out my blog too!!

    Laurie
    www.firstgradelyonsden.blogspot.com

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    1. Change is hard isn't it?! My first year of teaching I taught 6th grade and then got moved to 2nd - I was less terrified of that move than I am about moving to 1st!! Thanks for the advice too - I might hang that quote in my office to get me through the stressful first few weeks!

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  3. First grade is FABULOUS!! There are a lot of great first grade blogs out there. You could check First Grade Faculty as many first grade blogs pop up with new posts.

    ღDeAnne
    First Grade and Fabulous

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    1. DeAnne, what a great idea! I already follow the Second Grade Squad so will definitely start followig First Grade Faculty! I'll have to go back and reread some of your posts as well with a fresh set of eyes!

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  4. Year 1!!! You'll love it, and be super at it as well. I had One's this year (for the first time in over 10 years) and they grow on you. Lucky you have found out already, we don't find out till the end of Week 9. Though, since we have been 'instructed' all year to teach the new curriculum we are nearly guaranteed (fingers crossed) to remain on the same year level for next year. Let me know if you need any help with C2C in Year 1...

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    1. We actully thought most of us will stay on the same year level as well due to the C2C but so many have changed! Out of 6 Grade 2 teachers, only 2 are remaining! All of year levels have been jumbled around - basically you only stayed if you'd been on the year level 1-2 years. Hopefully you don't get any big surprises Week 9 because that doesn't leave much time to pack and move rooms! I'll sure I'll take you up on the help too!

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  5. Judith, I don't find out until Monday of Week 10 - last week! I work in a very big P-12 college and so we have to wait until last minute to know where we are. I have a pretty good feeling I know what I'll be teaching next year but it's still tough not knowing! Kylie, you will ROCK first grade! Look at what you have done already, moving from 6th to 2nd?! You have nothing to worry about...although I also stress about space for displays, etc, in my classroom!

    Shanyn
    Coffee, Kids and Compulsive Lists

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    1. Week 10!? That's leaving it so late! I'm also in a P-12 College so I understand some of the delays that can be had. We'll so how I go, mostly I don't think I have the patience for their constant dependence on the teacher that I've seen over the years. Teaching procedures and routines (and how to tie shoe laces) will be my number one priority I think!

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  6. Replies
    1. Definitely not as scary as going down to kinder! I couldn't do it!

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  7. How exciting!! I'm a graduate on contract so I have no idea when I'll find out what I'll be doing next year! I'm teaching prep at the moment and was really scared to be teaching such young kiddies but now I can't imagine teaching any other grade. I'm sure you'll grow to love the grade 1's =)

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    1. I hope you find out something soon Casey, being on contract is always nerve-racking this time of year! I'm off to check out your blog, I might get some idea of where the kids will be when they enter grade 1.

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  8. You will love it Kylie! The thing about going down a grade is that you know where you want to get them to by the end of the year for the Grade 2 teachers next year, so think about as laying foundations. Your room sounds like one of the old pre-school rooms? Believe me the grade 1's are much more capable now that the Prep year is in....when they only had part time pre-school it was like teaching Prep in Year 1- crazy! You are going to do a great job! I am still job hunting so have no idea what I am doing next year! Ces't le vie
    Tania
    Mrs Poultney's Ponderings

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    1. I really hope you find something soon Tania, the not knowing is the worst. You're right about know where I'll want them to be by the end of the year which is great. Glass half full right!?

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  9. Hi Kylie!
    You are going to love it! I went from second to fourth and then to Kindergarten where I have been for the past three years...I know you will love it. The room and space sound pretty neat, too!
    Another great blog is The First Grade Parade by Cara Carroll. She used to teach first before going to Kindergarten this year. She has some great ideas on her blog and TPT store.
    Congratulations on the change!
    Robyn

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    1. I LOVE Cara Carroll, I would be the happiest mum in the world if my son had her as his teacher! I think I'll stock up on her things - thanks for the recommendation!

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  10. You'll be fine Kylie! I loved teaching Grade 1! They are soooo cute and just as independent as they need to be! It was a really rewarding couple of years for me when I taught Grade 1. I love it when they get to the stage in the year where their reading really kicks ahead and they just fly!

    Good luck getting your head around everything from now until the end of the year!

    Alison
    Teaching Maths with Meaning

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    1. Following on from your comment about reading, they've already had a year of prep so at least for most kids I won't be starting at the very beginning. hmmm, maybe the little kiddies won't be so scary after all! Thanks!

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  11. Grade 1 is my favourite! I had been on Year 1 for 5 years before I went back to Kinder.
    Year 1 is the year that you will see the most progress, it is so rewarding.
    There are lots of great blogs out there but one of my favourites is Cara Carroll's, The First Grade Parade.
    Good luck, but I don't think you'll be needing it. I'm sure this time next year you will be telling us how you love Year 1.
    Rhonda
    Classroom Fun

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  12. After a year of following you, and reading your creative ideas, I know you will do well. First grade is challenging, but I just LOVE watching my first graders grow in all ways throughout the year. Please check out my pinterest board where I have pinned many wonderful ideas supplied by generous teacher like you.
    Julie Abdo Bales

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  13. Oh, Kylie! I suggest you read Daily 5 if you haven't and slowly, but surely teach the children your expectations based on Daily 5. It has worked wonders for me this year in second, and having taught first two years makes me think it would be marvelous! You're in my prayers!

    ♥ Melly♥

    Stapler’s Strategies for Sizzlin' Second Graders!

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  14. Well, Kylie, just remember, they're just 6 and 7 year-olds. And if you're as good a teacher as you appear to be from your blog, you could teacher these kiddos successfully in a cardboard box.
    Embrace the change and head over to Tunstall's Teaching Tidbits. She's an excellent first grade teacher with a giant sense of humor.
    Cathy

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  15. Kylie! Congratulations! Firsties are the best!! They learn more in that single year than any other year!! You are welsome to check out my blog, firstgradewow.blogspot.com. I have neen teaching for 30 years, but still loooove it! All my units are free to download! Let me know if there is anything in particular that you need!! Enjoy!!
    HUGS!
    Nancy
    firstgradewow.blogspot.com

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  16. You'll be fine. I'm loving being in Grade 1 after 7 years of 4 year olds. They are just so enthusiastic and wanting to do things. I'm sure if you ask, you'll find lots of people who'll give you help if you need it. Re the classroom; any chance of photos so I can see what you mean? I put paper over my windows to increase the display area and it works well. Just peel it off at the end of the year, add new the following year.

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  17. I know that feeling! Excited but still nervous- that was me last year!

    That room sounds kind of like mine last year! It was almost triangular-shaped, with one long wall that could be pulled back to open up to the class next door. I had shelves or cabinets all along the long wall, and a chalkboard and SmartBoard on one of the others, and then windows. Noooot much usable wall space, but I made it work and I'm sure you will, too! :)

    Jenny
    Luckeyfrog's Lilypad

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  18. well...good luck to your challenge in life. Be positive i know you can do it. Love your work and things will go easily with you. God speed.
    hervey bay real estate

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  19. After following your blog and loving everything you post I know you'll do well. I'm looking for a Qld Year 6 teacher with a really good blog, any ideas?

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