Monday, July 9, 2012

Folders, Folders, Folders!

 Hi all ~
    First of all, thanks to everyone who stopped by and for all of your sweet comments. And, a BIG THANK YOU to Mrs. D from The Silver Lining for all of her help and the shout out.  I'm slowly, but surely, trying to get the hang of this blogging thing!

    Now, on to folders. I don't know about you, but I spend my summer impatiently anticipating the Back to School sales. This year, our kids start back on August 6th, so I was in an even bigger rush to start getting ready for the new year.  Well, friends, the sales started today!! :)  My first order of business?  Folders!

   I start the year with the standard homework folder, center folder, and a fluency folder. I thought I'd share them with you. :)

   Fluency Folder:
      In an effort to increase fluency amongst my 1st graders, I started sending home weekly Fluency Folders. At my school, we use the Read Naturally program. So, on Monday, each child reads a leveled passage to me and earns a "cold score". They are supposed to practice at least twice a night as part of their homework, and then they re-read the same passage to me on Friday, earning a "hot score".  Parents sign off during the week, and you would be amazed at their progress!

I use the recording sheet to keep track of their progress and just continue to staple new ones on top to keep record all year!  I also have a data sheet I use with CAFE to monitor comprehension, accuracy, fluency, and vocabulary.  I will be MORE THAN HAPPY to share those with you if someone can please tell me how to add a document (PDF or Word) on here :)

    Center Folders:
    I originally got this idea from  Ms. M's blog @ . Instead of hole punching the other side, I used already hole punched folders from Wal-Mart, and super cute duck tape and voila...double folders!
The first section is for Guided Math, finished & unfinished work, and the second half for Guided Reading. I'm so excited to use these this year !!

   Lastly, Homework Folders:
For years, I searched for the best way to do homework folders.  This is what I have used for the last few years, and it works perfectly for me.  I invest in the poly folders so they last all year.
On the inside, I put a pencil holder for all transportation notes, money (if it's not there, I don't know to look for it!), and sight word rings I make each student.
Yeah, it's sideways AND upside down...definitely don't have the hang of this. Sorry!!

Anyway, the next part is the notes pages. I put about 15-20 pieces of notebook paper to use for parent communication only. The little sticker asks parents not to remove the paper, and for it not be used for homework. This has really helped me keep up with correspondence throughout the year.

Sideways again...Arghh!!

Lastly, there are 2 sheet protectors for a) monthly calendar b)behavior calendar c) sight word list and d) the student's reading log.

I send home homework on Monday, and check on Fridays. This system has worked flawlessly so far, so I thought I'd share.

Thanks again for all of your support. Oh, and if anyone can tell me how to load documents, I'll do that for the Fluency Folder and CAFE sheets ASAP.  I'll also accept any suggestions on loading pictures correctly ..haha.. THANKS!

Have fun with all the school supply sales !! :)



  1. I like your fluency folder idea. May have to try that. Love how you made your own double folders! :)

  2. The fluency folder is a wonderful idea. I would love to do that as a center every week or in small reading groups. Thanks for sharing your ideas! :)
    Learning Is Something to Treasure

  3. I love all the folder ideas. I usually make my take-home folders so they all look the same, and so I can give them out the day the parents come to drop off supplies. I start stalking the sales this time of year. I'm planning on making calendar notebooks that also fit in a folder. I think I have to take some of your ideas! :) I really like having notebook paper in the folder for notes back and forth. Thanks for sharing!

    ★ First-Graders from Outer Space ★

  4. I have a question - do the pencil holders fit well in that kind of folder as opposed to a 3-ring binder? I LOVE this idea but wasn't sure how it would hold up.

  5. Yes, they fit perfectly, and hold up, too! I use them over and over again. Some have been in folders for 3 school years. At the end of the year, I just take them out, clean them up, and re-use. I just tell the kids (and parents) that the holders are not for a bunch of supplies because it would make it too bulky. Glad you like them, and thanks for stopping by ! :)

  6. Hey Kelly!! Thanks so much for checking us out over at Simply SWEET TEAching. I love your blog! You sound like a very practical gal and one that can stretch a dollar on some DIY projects like us! haha. I LOVE that you're a Southern girl too!! Yay :) You're doing pretty well to have only started in June. I'm impressed. Oh, and I would love it if you would share the fluency folder sheets you have in your Fluency folder. I'm trying to start that this year (fingers crossed). Do you have a Teachers Pay Teachers store opened up yet? If not, definitely do so. You can share it on there and just mark it FREE if its just a few pages or you can add a google document that would allow anyone to download it for free too. If you can't figure it out and don't mind sharing our email is Keep in touch...we'd love to do a giveaway with you in the future, especially since you're 1st grade too! :)

  7. Hi Kelly,

    I love your fluency folder idea. Thank you for sharing. Would you be willing to email me a copy of "My Fluency Folder page." My email is v*pfef*fer@hot* (just take out the astericks). Thank you!

  8. A couple questions about the fluency folders:
    1- what is the rest of the class doing when you are testing every child every Monday and Friday? I love the idea, but am afraid I wouldn't have enough time! I hardly have time to test them on their sight words and do progress monitoring (for our reading assessment program).

    2-Where do you get the reading passage? Is it from your reading program?

    3-Also, what about the kids that can't read? My school is low SES and so we still have a handful of first graders that can't read most of the year.

    Just a few thoughts I had. I really like the idea though because I want to fit fluency in, but haven't figured out how yet. (It's only my second year of teaching).



  9. I love it! May I have a copy as well? Thank you for sharing!!!


  10. I love your fluency folder. May I have a copy emailed to me? Thank you, Shannon

  11. Do you still have your fluency passages. I am really interested in them, they look great!



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