I have been greatly inspired to create my own blog after gaining so many wonderful ideas from other blog masters. I am a newlywed since July 2010, a mom to an adorable 5 year old super mixed breed dog, and I am a teacher in my 2nd year in second grade.
However I taught first grade for four years before I was "promoted". I loved first grade and will never disagree that it is the most challenging grade, but Second grade is amazing! The students are able to do so much more independently and LOVE to read since it's not a struggle for them anymore.
I have been doing a class mascot since my first year and it is beyond a doubt my favorite thing, year after year. My upcoming students, whose neighbors or family members had me, come in asking me about Roo. It's adorable! Over the years I've received 3 "new" Roos because my original one was kinda sad looking.
I start every year explaining why I picked Roo and why he is important to me. Why I picked Roo: As a child I liked Kangaroos because they began with the letter K, like in my name! He is important to me because he was mine when I was a child. We still use the "old" Roo in class during sharing time, but one of the new Roos is the one that goes home every weekend. He is joined in the bag with a notebook. The notebook had directions that state what to do and to be careful with him. Then there are blank notebook pages inside sheet protectors. They student write about their weekend with Roo and can take pictures to add to the notebook or draw pictures if they don't have a camera. They can also ask to take him on vacations with them. (Sidenote: Last year, after Back to School night, I had 3 parents give me their vacation dates so they would definitely get Roo.) Roo has been to Disney every year twice, Baltimore, Hershey, NYC, California, and Phillies Spring Training.
The coolest part is that I save all the notebooks and put them out in my non-fiction section for the new students to read. Let me tell you how popular those are! I haven't been teaching that long yet, but my first years class is now in 6th grade (I had them when I taught first) so it's sweet when they come back to look at their Roo Book.