100th Day Celebrations

The 100th Day of school can be a fun way to celebrate with our little learners.  But it’s also a great opportunity to continue challenging our first graders along with the fun.  Sometimes, the 100th day celebrations in first grade look a lot like the celebrations in kindergarten…and that means our firsties are doing more review than learning…and as fun as 100 days is, we just don’t have time to waste on review.  Let’s talk about ways to make the 100th day count in first grade too!

The 100 Year Old Culture

I love taking time to add a little history and culture into our 100th day.  Our firsties came dressed up as 100 year olds. {aren’t they adorable???}

This year, for whatever reason, I only had 5 kiddos dress up.  They were all embarrassed about it when we talked about it yesterday and last week…guess I have a group of shy firsties this year!  But the 5 that did dress up were uh.dorable.  The neon orange sneakers with the suit is just hilarious, isn’t it??

And one of my little old ladies brought her little brother’s golf club and turned it upside down for a cane.  So creative!!

Here’s my “senior selfie” I took this year.

And my team from last year…same “OLD” ladies minus one that was missing and one of our ladies that moved to kinder this year!

So since we were dressed for it, we set the stage for 100 days by looking at the Then & Now slideshow included in my 100’s Day packet.  We looked at pictures of airplanes, cars, sports, phones, schools, families and first graders from 100 years ago.

My kids were OBSESSED with the fact that nobody smiled for pictures 100 years ago. Maybe they weren’t happy because they didn’t have computers! Maybe they didn’t like smiling! Maybe they didn’t like wearing weird clothes! They were seriously cracking me up!  We also sorted pictures into “Then” and “Now” categories using an interactive slide from my 100s day packet.

We also helped set the “culture” stage with a few routine change ups…
*Instead of listening to piano music during work times, we listen to music from the 1920’s (ya know, music that 100 year old people would’ve listened to in first grade!)
*Instead of my usual classroom management attention getter of “First Graders” “Yes, Ma’am,” today we did, “Hey, Old People!” “Hey, Grandma!”
*And instead of using their first names, we called each other Mr. and Miss with their last names…I mean, it’s rude to call 100 year old people by their first name, right??

It’s the little things that make my day and theirs a little brighter! 🙂

100th Day Trail Mix Challenge

In the past, we have done 10 of each of the 10 snacks to make 100 snacks of trail mix.  But after many years of our kinder and first teams teaching CGI…and with the “beefier” standards of Common Core, my firsties come in being able to count very well and can easily count by 10’s to 100.  Each week in counting collections, all but 2 of my kids are counting to 100 and beyond.  And many are counting collections well over 250.  So, counting to 100? Easy peasy lemon squeezy. 🙂 And when I told them today we would be getting 10 of each of the 10 snacks… almost half of them immediately announced that it would make 100 snacks altogether.  Yeah…that kind of fluent thinking just didn’t happen 9 years ago when I started teaching.

So, I just had to make this a little more challenging this year.   This year, at their first station, they only got 3 snacks.  Then, after 100 seconds (duh…of course), they moved to their next station, but added 10 more.  The stations were set up around the room with the labels from my 100’s Day Packet like so…

After each 100 second rotation, we recorded the number of snacks we had…and it’s a much higher level thinking skill to count by 10’s from a non-decade number, so it really got them thinking.  Plus, it tied in perfectly with our goal of helping kids see patterns in numbers during our CGI math time this week.

I didn’t get a picture of the notation I wrote as we kept track of our snacks, but it looked something like this for those math nerds, like me, that want to know!
3 + 10 = 13
13 + 10 = 23
23 + 10 = 33
33 + 10 = 43
43 + 10 = 53
53 + 10 = 63
63 + 10 = 73
73 + 10 = 83
83 + 10 = 93

At this point, we left our snack bags at our desk and came back to the carpet.  I asked them to solve…
93 + 10 = [  ]

…when we realized this would be 103 and that would be too many snacks, we solved this equation for box…
93 + [  ] = 100

I was really proud of my great math thinkers. “It’s 7 because 3 + 7 = 10.”  and “I know it has to be seven because we already put in 9 groups of ten and then you just take the 3 from the beginning and it takes 7 more to make the 10th group of 10.”  Oh, how big my math heart swelled to hear my firsties talk like this about our numbers.  They really have learned lots in 100 days!

…just think of all of the math I’ve been missing out on during the 100th day when we just simply count our snacks by 10’s.  This was a winner!

100th Day Balloon Release

Another new thing we added this year, was a balloon release.  This is a definite must-do every year now!  Thanks to our amazing interns for blowing up a balloon for each of our 125 firsties and tying them to each of their chairs!

They used sharpies to write 1 thing they’ve learned in the last 100 days (“In 100 days, I learned…”)  And then they got super sad to learn that we would be releasing them at the end of the day.  So, I told them that they would be traveling in the sky until they eventually fall to a secret person somewhere out in the great unknown (*wink*).  And that got them SUPER pumped.  So much so that they were really concerned about how their secret person would know where the balloon came from.  So almost all of them added their name and our school in hopes their secret friend would track them down. 🙂

At the end of the day, all of first grade went outside to release.  It was a 5 minute ordeal–TOPS–but so perfect and beautiful!  I loved the reflective nature of this activity too!  And we couldn’t have chosen a more beautiful 100th day!

Check out these activities and more in my 100’s Day Packet!

How do you beef up your 100th Day activities in first grade?

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