Friday, October 7, 2011

Friday, Friday, Gotta Get Down on Friday...

Ok, I actually hate that song but it popped into my head when I started thinking about this post and wa-la! I have a title.

Friday is my favorite day of the week! Why? Well, there's the obvious - it's the end of the week, but I do my favorite activities on Friday. Read on to find out!

1. Friday Journals
During Writer's Workshop, my students write in their Friday Journals. We start by brainstorming what we learned during the week. The students then write a letter to their parents (or other family member) explaining what we did in class that week. The students practice writing letters and also recall what we learned.
The students then take them home over the weekend and I ask that the parents write a letter in response to their child. It's a great remedy for the question, "what did you learn in school today?" I also love seeing the interaction between the child and parent. Here are some photos:

At the beginning of the year, the students start off by writing 3 sentences and asking one question. By the end of the year, they are writing full pages, front and back! Go second graders! :)

The students paste a letter from me on the first page, which explains the project to parents and then gives them examples of what to write. Here's the template for free!

If the students bring their Friday Journal back on Monday with a parent response, they receive a sticker on the cover of their journal. By the end of the year, the cover looks really cool and the parents have a special keepsake.

2. Fun Friday
My students earn Fun Friday as a reward at the end of every week. We start the week with 20 minutes in our minute box. If the class makes good choices as a whole (walking quiet in the hall, etc), they earn minutes. If they are having trouble making good choices, they lose minutes. We usually end the week with about 25 minutes. If a student has finished all their work, they get to choose from a variety of educational activities.

This is the chart for the students to choose an activity. I'll add more activities as the year goes on.

My favorite part of this activity is watching the students interact cooperatively with each other. It definitely helps them open up more with each other.

3. Dress Down Day!
I find that I am a better, more relaxed teacher when I wear jeans and sneakers. Is that just me??

I joined the linky party over at Clutter-Free Classroom!


  1. I feel much better in my jeans and school shirt too! I wish I could dress down with the kids and save the dress up for parent meetings lol!

    Jennifer @ Herding Kats In Kindergarten

  2. I am totally with you on the dress down days for sure. Love the parent communication journal too, very cute idea.

  3. I agree about dress down, too. I would love to wear scrubs such as the doctor's offices do every day. It would make life so much easier and comfortable shoes would go with scrubs... :)


    Stapler’s Strategies for Sizzlin' Second Graders!

  4. My mom's class does Fun Fridays! It's such a nice time to catch up on things.

    I love your Friday journals, too! Thanks for sharing! :)

    Luckeyfrog's Lilypad

  5. We have Fun Fridays too and the kids love them! Plus, its a good incentive for my students to turn in homework on time, because if they had any late or missing assignments for the week they have "study hall" to complete what they are missing!

    Lessons with Laughter

  6. Hi Sara,
    I love your Friday Journal idea, and I would LOVE to use it next year. Could you tell me how I could get a copy? I tried downloading it, but "it" says I have to purchase Scib. I'm not tech savy, so I dont know what I am doing wrong???
    Thanks so much!

  7. Just saw this idea on PInterest- and I LOVE it! I am so excited to implement it in my classroom this fall. I used your letter and added a background and clipart. I would love to send you a copy if you are interested. :)
    emfranklin82 @ gmail dot com
    First with Franklin

  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

  9. Hi Sara, I love your Friday Journals and would love a copy of the letter but I dont have a scribd account. Can you email?

  10. That's such a great idea!!! I'll be starting something with my daughter like this! She's in second grade and this can be incorporated into Friday Family night somehow!
    Thanks! Newly following!

  11. has scribd changed the way it works? i can't download many things anymore, including your template above :(

  12. I can't wait to begin our Friday journals! Thanks so much for including the parent letter! That will be really helpful! :)

    Mrs. Beattie's Classroom

  13. Thanks for sharing. I'm implementing Friday Journal this 2nd semester.

  14. Love the Friday journals, I have done a version with 3rd graders. How early in the year do you start them with 2nd graders?


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