Author Archives: LauraB1958

Thanksgiving Freebie!

Need some quick and easy literacy activities for centers or seatwork?

Grab my FREE Sample from my Turkey Time Literacy and Writing Activities for 1st or 2nd.  It’s no prep – just print and go!

Click here or on the cover below to download.

FREE Turkey Time Cover

These printables are included in the above freebie:


Turkey Time Free pages

Happy Thanksgiving!

Laura signature

Constitution Day: Five Ideas including a Freebie!

Federal law mandates that all schools receiving federal funding, pre-K through college, hold an educational program on the U.S. Constitution on September 17th, also know as, Constitution Day.    Helping first graders understand the importance of the Constitution in a meaningful way can be a challenge.

Here are some ideas to help your plan for Constitution Day:

1.  Read aloud and discuss the book We the Kids by David Catrow.  We the Kids cover

This picture book provides a fun and easy introduction to the Preamble of the Constitution!


2.  Participate in Annual Constitution Day Poster Contest Constitution Day Poster Contest

Have your students design a poster to show how they have benefitted from the freedoms provided by the U.S. Constitution.  This Constitution Day Poster contest is sponsored by for students in grades K-12, including homeschoolers!  Follow this link or click on the image for details and an entry form.  You’ll find more information on the Constitution on this website too!

3.  Watch and discuss Schoolhouse Rock “We the People Video”

First graders enjoy watching this classic song and cartoon video of the preamble of the Constitution!  The video is just 2:45 minutes long, but I found that my first graders enjoyed repeated viewings. Click here to go to the video webpage on YouTube.

4.  Wear Red, White, and Blue on September 17 – FREE Printable

A simple way to celebrate this day in first grade is to wear red, white, and blue.  Here is the coloring sheet that I sent home the day the day before Constitution Day to remind them of what to wear.  Click here or on the image below for your FREE PDF copy:

Click for PDF

Click for PDF

5. Constitution Day PowerPoint Lesson

Want something “no prep” and ready-to-use?  Check out my best-selling Constitution Day PowerPoint lesson!  It includes a 24-slide PowerPoint lesson that explains the U.S. Constitution and its history in first grade language. At the end of the PowerPoint, there is a link to view the Schoolhouse Rock “We the People” video on the WatchKnowLearn website.  The lesson includes a lesson plan, as well as the wear red, white, and blue coloring sheet above and a follow-up worksheet.
Constitution Day Cover
Constitution Day PPT





Hope these ideas help make your job a little easier as you prep for Constitution Day!

Laura signature

First Grade, First Day . . . and First Post!

Today is the first day of first grade at Maple Elementary in Chardon, Ohio.

All day long, “First Grade, First Day” will be rolling around in my head.   This was the first poem placed in my students’ poetry notebooks.  I used it as the basis for a reading lesson on the first day of school.   We would chorally read it aloud together, read it with a partner, use it to identify rhyming words and practice making words with the -ay word family.  Then I’d send home a copy of the poem for my first graders to read with their parents.

Kids would love reading this poem later in the school year and remember the first day of school.  Repeated readings would help build fluency.

Here is a free copy of the poem for you to use with your students.  Click on the image below to get a PDF file:  First Grade First Day Poem

I offer two complete reading lessons connected to Common Core State Standards using the First Grade, First Day poem.   Click on an image below to check out these products in my Teachers Pay Teachers store.

First Grade First Grade Notebook Cover First Grade First Day PPT Cover

Laura signature