read alouds

Inspired by Dr. Jean!

The K and 1 team at my school went to Perrysburg, Ohio today for staff development with Dr. Jean. Through all of the ups and downs of my first year of teaching this really helped me become motivated again and remember why I love teaching. With all of the things that Ohio is having teachers do and especially filling the plates of us brand new teachers it can be very overwhelming and hard to only think about the kids with all of the other millions of things that we have to do. For one day today... I got to JUST think about my kids and different ways I can engage and teach them! I am revamped and ready to go! I am so excited!

I am not going to share all because Dr. Jean has her own blog...and I believe she blogs daily! She also has her website with a ton of free resources!

Anyway... back to ideas! These are some of my favorite things that I wanted to share with you!

This is an adorable simple to make book. All you need is paper. Fold it, hole punch, choose anything like a stick, fork or twig. Then, put the rubber bands through the holes, over the object and Whala! A booklet! 

This was a mini paper bag. We folded down the edges to create this "nest." She gave an idea for earth day of course. She talked about how birds are natural recyclers... so with students you could talk about the different ways birds recycle in order to build their nest. She suggested going on a nature walk and gathering different items from outside. I would have the kids put it in this 'nest' and when we get back to the classroom have kids attach their things to the nest. Then we could put these in the hallway on a tree and use a cute recycling quote! :)
This is what she called a 'toolbox.' Use a brown paper bag. Punch two holds at the bottom. Place a pipe cleaner through the holes. Then make sure you fold the bag up on the side where the bottom can flip. Slide paper under the flip and use for whatever you want. I am going to use it tomorrow actually for an informational writing on triceratops. We have already researched and I think this will be a fun way to do an informational writing. Then I want them to draw a picture of one and stick it on the 'flap.' In the hall I am going to put, "Flip me down to see what I found." It will be cute since we researched so many different sources together!

I saved the best for last!
This is a BIG brown paper bag made into a writing portfolio/file folder or whatever you want it to be!
You can see that I stored all of our crafts/books inside of it! It is perfect! Look below for how to assemble this!

I want to use this next year as the kids writing portfolio where they can place one writing a week and at the end of the year they get to take it home. I will have the kids decorate the flap to make it their own! So perfect and kid friendly!
I hope you enjoyed this post! Check out Dr. Jean's blog and website! It is awesome!
See you on Friday! My post will be all about the dinosaurs!


  1. I love these ideas, and Dr. Jean!!! Thanks for sharing!


  2. I went to this same Dr. Jean conference in November and loved it! I agree, it is definitely encouraging and motivating! She didn't share the nest idea with our group, but I'm so glad you did - I want to try that asap with my kiddos!

    Love, Live, and Teach

  3. Dr. jean is wonderful! And you were just 12 minutes away from my building!
    How funny is that!
    Great post topics today.
    Thanks for sharing!