Beginning of the Year Business

Can you believe that summer is almost over? I'm kind of in denial. This summer went super fast. There are about 30 more things on my summer to-do list and that doesn't count any school prep. I would seriously love to rewind July minus the 115 degree heat.  
As we're starting up a new year, I've had lots of questions about my schedule, forms, etc.  I thought I'd share some things I use each year.
About 9 years ago I started using MOOSE Books.  A management organization book for my students. It prevented things from getting crumpled at the bottom of the book bag, prevented lost lunch money and kept things neat and communication between school and home so much easier.  Our principal loved the idea and wanted the whole school to use it.  Of course the cute theme binders weren't cool enough for our 5th and 6th grade students, so they changed the name on me! Now they are GO Books.  Simple, boring and grade neutral.  GO stands for Getting Organized and it must GO with them everywhere, so I guess it works. Anyway...I had to cutesy it up a bit with graphic and fonts, because that is way this teacher rolls.  So here is the cover and labels for each section if you are interested. I haven't put them together yet, but when I do I'll post a picture for you all.  Until then I'll try to explain as clearly as I can about each section.
These books are 1 1/2 inch Clearview Binders.  Here is a link to the pages needed to create your own.

I include an information sheet for the parents on how to use the Go Book. Sorry- I can't find it on my computer anywhere! But when I do I'll let you know.  I also include a GO Book Rules sheet (Someone else's genius idea) I can't remember where I got it. If it's your idea please email me.

Next is a pencil pouch marked, "Money".  Any money that comes to school, comes in this pocket. Next are three binder pocket dividers that hold the kids papers. Each one has it's own label. 

After this section I put a clear 3 hole sheet protector with the following label. The students put their monthly lunch menu inside.

The next section is the poetry section. 
My students weekly poems go here. They illustrate and place their poem in this section on Fridays. 

The final section is Parent/Teacher Communication. Here I put looseleaf for notes and our Star Chart (Behavior Chart) that tells what type of day their child had.

So that's the GO Book. If you like it, feel free to GO ahead and download until your little heart is content.  

Next I'm including a photo of my lesson plans. I just finished my new schedule for the year. My lesson plans are the easiest way to share what my day looks like.  

I'm also including a few forms I send home at the beginning of the year.  My sweet friend Cara at The First Grade Parade just gave you all a bunch of hers that are fabulous so I won't repeat with my version, but here are a few you might want.  

Okay...So for some reason. This party sign up doesn't upload correctly to google docs. Therefore, if you want this. Just email me. :) 
And lastly...Here are some class lists and checklists if you want them. I also have a different free set in color in my Teachers pay Teachers Store.


I also send home a letter at the beginning of the year to my students. A little getting to know me, info they'll need before school starts, etc. I ask the parents to write me a letter about their child so I can get to know them better. They bring it with them to Meet the Teacher, the night before school starts. The parents love writing them and I get info about their child I might not get from a form.  If you'd like to see a copy of what I send home, I'll be more than happy to send it your way. This post is getting super long! 

Hope you all enjoy the rest of your time off! 

P.S. The graphics and borders used in these documents are courtesy of:
DJ Inkers
Scrappin Doodles
Just So Scrappy 
ScrappinCop
Thistlegirl Designs
The Ettes
Fonts: Lettering Delights and DJ Inkers

I have commercial licenses or permission to share from all designers. Please do not redistribute or recreate these materials as your own.  
















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61 comments

  1. Love the post...lots of great ideas! Thanks for sharing!
    Just curious...what fonts do you use on your lesson plans?

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  2. absolutely a-dor-able!
    I love the G.O. book-I try to change for our school theme each year, but this is way better!
    Rachel

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  3. Love Love Love the ideas from others!! I was wondering how you phrase your letter to get your parents to write you back ....I LOVE that idea!!

    I also send a letter from me to my families --I love the idea of them writing a letter back! Thanks for sharing!!

    sarah
    shetrick@gmail.com
    www.mrshetrick.com

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  4. hmmm, what font is GO in? I want to make them match (I need 2nd grade on mine) =)

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  5. I would love the pages. Can you also email me the lesson plan template, it looks very user friendly!

    diaryofa1stgradeteacher.blogspot.com

    leahtaska@gmail.com

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  6. I would love to see a copy of the letter that you send. Thanks for all the wonderful ideas!
    klanspa@comcast.net

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  7. These are awesome ideas! I use something similar for my kids...I call them B.E.E. Binders and they have alot of the same things you use.

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  8. Mrs. Lamb- Go is in Wish I Were Taller from Kevin and Amanda Scrapbook fonts.

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  9. LOVE the 'GO' book idea!! I have been looking for a good title for organization binders!...I really like the cover you created...I teach 2nd grade but is there anyway you could possibly send it to me?? let me know!
    Thank so much!! xoxo, sophie

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  10. So adorable! Thanks for sharing that... :)

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  11. I love the idea of having the parents write you a letter! I would love a copy of it, too! And I'm curious... do your kids not have recess?

    amyjones2144@yahoo.com

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  12. I love the idea of GO. It is very simple and to the point. I am also in second grade and wondered if you could make one for second grade. Thanks.
    chrisb@sd215.net

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  13. Thank you so much for posting your GO BOOK pages.
    I really want to start one this year with a take home folder...it will be my first:)
    I love your ideas for it.
    Also I have been hunting for the NAME of the font you have used throughout the pages..I really like it for how authentic it is to the way I teach printing. It seems very popular but I can't find it...could you e-mail me the name of it?
    bharmor@hotmail.com
    Thank-you so much.

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  14. I love your party list. I'm sending you an email right now. Thanks for sharing!!

    First Grade Escapades

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  15. This will be my first year teaching and this is a perfect idea! I was pondering how I could keep "in touch" with my parents and this fits perfectly! I was able to download all of the documents but the cover page. Would you be able to email it to me? I would truly appreciate it.
    Thank-you ;D

    Jodey
    JodeyCook@gmail.com

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  16. hmm GO books? I like it. I was going to use my last name "VOSS" and call them Voss Books.. Very Organized Students Succeed! But, GO book is not quite as vain! LOL
    Would it be possible to get that cover with "Kindergarten" on it? MY EMAIL IS AMBERVINCENT6810@COMCAST.NET

    I would also like the party sign up sheet!
    Thank you for making them freebies...

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  17. Love the GO BOOK! Awesome and Easy! :) Can you email me your lesson plan template? It looks amazing.

    FidishunNACS@gmail.com

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  18. I have seen a lot of these around but I really like the name "Go" book because it is so simple! Thanks for helping me get it "Go"ing!!

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  19. I LOVE your G.O. books.
    Where did you find/create your lesson plan template?
    I am a first year teacher in 2nd/3rd grade I would love to use this format to keep up with my day. THANKS

    wpbarrentine@gmail.com

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  20. Oh my goodness I LOVE LOVE your post!!! Such great ideas! If you're willing, I would love a copy of your lesson plan form (so user friendly) and your letter you send home to parents. I love that you have the parents write back to you! I've always had the kids write back to me and I'm loving this little twist. Thanks for sharing all of your amazing documents!!!

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  21. I love the cute borders! I went to those websites you mentioned, but didn't see any borders. Can you help me?? And love the GO book!

    whitneylkelly@gmail.com
    mattandwhitneykelly.blogspot.com

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  22. As others have mentioned, love the GO book idea! Thanks for sharing. I was curious as to the routine daily with these. Where do the kids store them? Do you check them each morning? etc, etc Thanks!

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  23. Thanks so much for sharing! I'm just starting out as a first grade teacher and love your GO book. I'm wondering if I may be able to get a copy of the letter you send home to parents as well. Thanks! maggie.young4@gmail.com

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  24. Could you send me a copy of the letter you send home to parents and the volunteer info sheets? Thank you thank you thank you!!! dbs0786@gmail.com

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  25. i would LOVE a copy of your cover page! i couldn't get it to download for some reason. thank you so much!! sooo cute!
    amanda.bryant@knoxschools.org

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  26. i would LOVE a copy of your cover sheet! it's soo cute! thanks! :)
    amanda.bryant@knoxschools.org

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  27. Could you please send me a copy of your volunteer sheet and your party sign-up sheet? Also, two questons: 1. Do you send a letter to your students, or just to the parents? 2. Do you give parents additional information at the beginning of the year or just the letter you send them?
    sweetpeasandbb@gmail.com

    Thanks!
    Briana

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  28. Can you please email me a copy of the daily behavior log for the clip system. My email is armano10@aol.com

    Thank You! Love your blog :)

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  29. Oops, I would also like the lesson plan template :)

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  30. Can I have a copy of your lesson plan template? afreshman26@yahoo.com! I LOVE YOUR BLOG!

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  31. Can you email me your lesson plan template? andrea.daigle2@gmail.com? Thanks!

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  32. Thank you so much for all of these documents! I plan on using several next year and really appreciate someone who is willing to share their great ideas!

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  33. I love your GO book! What a great way to organize so many important things all in one place! Do you buy all of the materials needed for the binder books, or do you have parents donate those items?

    Also, I would LOVE to see/use your lesson plan template. I LOVE the way it is laid out!

    Thanks for sharing such awesome resources :)

    kuku4jc@hotmail.com

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  34. Found this link off of pinterest. Love the GO BOOK idea! Would love to use your template, but can not open file. Would you mind emailing it to me at brittney.guard@yahoo.com Thank you!

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  35. Can you please send me a copy of your party sign-up sheet? Thank you...lmattle@nortonschools.org

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  36. I love this!! I would love a copy of the information sheet for parents on how to use the G.O. Book, if it is avaliable yet. Please email it if you can. rcretsing2@norman.k12.ok.us

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  37. Hi! Would LOVE if you could make a version of the cover page for "Kindergarten" instead of First Grade. I'd really like to get started on these for next year, and I need to make 30!! Thanks so much!!
    cmbowles16@yahoo.com

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  38. Love the G.O. Folder, I have used (S.T.A.R ~ Students Taking Academic Responsibility) and B.O.N.E (Being Organized & Neat Everyday) but that has been hard for my Kinder students to understand. This is very straight forward. I would love a copy of the volunteer and party sign ups. We are digging deep into RTI but I am having a hard time keeping track of all the information on students, any ideas?
    Thanks
    Mary
    mkroll@ascisd.net

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  39. I am really loving your site. I am trying to decide if I want to start your G.O. binder idea. The binders are so expensive. Do you get them somewhere cheap? Also, I would love to get your lesson plan template (unless it is somewhere on your site that I have missed). s.pontius@hotmail.com Thanks again

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  40. I would love to get your lesson plan template!
    rschandl@umail.iu.edu

    Rachel

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  41. That is an awesome lesson plan template. I looked on TPT and it doesn't look like you have it on there. Is there anyway you would email me the template? Thank you ap much. Adieadkins@gmail.com

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  42. i'd love a copy of this as well, unable to find on download on this site. thx ms.deborah.skinner@gmail.com

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  43. Are you sharing your lesson plan template? If so, I'd love it!

    Thanks!

    Linda

    lbutkus@sd161.org

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  44. Can i please get the party volunteer form? allisonj83@yahoo.com

    Thank you so much

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  45. Somehow, I missed the opportunity for you to send me your lesson plan template at the beginning of the school year. I have one, but yours is so much better. Thank you so much for sharing. bcbarnes@harding.edu

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  46. Would you so kindly send me your lesson plan template? It is FABULOUS! Siemfamily4@hotmail.com

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  47. I love your lesson plan template, could you please send me your lesson plan template? Also will I need to download fonts to support the template? Great site!
    mcshane.tina@cathednet.wa.edu.au

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  48. Can I get a copy of your lesson plan template? Thanks! It's great! blairm@greenek12.org

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  49. Can I please have a copy of your lesson plan template? It's great! blairm@greenek12.org

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  50. Can I please have a copy of your lesson plan template?
    mmessmer@gjcs.k12.in.us

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  51. Can I please have a copy of your lesson plan template? Thanks!
    mcreynolds.sarah@gmail.com

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  52. Hi! I've been searching and searching for a good lesson plan template and I stumbled across yours. Do you think you could send me a copy if you didn't mind? I would love to have it!! Thanks!
    sarahn.arnold@gmail.com

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  53. Hello could you please send me the lesson plan template. Thank you! :) corina.rendon@gmail.com

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  54. I've been trying to find a lesson plan template that works for me. I ran across your blog and found your lesson plan template. I LOVE it! I tried looking for it on your TPT store, but it wasn't there. Is there any way you could email it to me? Thank you!
    markie.beckham@gmail.com

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  55. I love your party sign ups sheet and volunteer sheet. Would you mind emailing them to me?
    Thank you!!!
    Nichole
    finnnb@outlook.com

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  56. Would you mind sharing your party sign ups and volunteer sheet with me? I love them!!

    Thanks!

    finnnb@outlook.com

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  57. Your lesson plans are awesome? Where could I find a copy of this? Thanks!
    shannonvega@maderausd.org

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  58. I would love a copy of the party sign up and volunteer sheet. Thank you for your good ideas! michelle_moncibaiz@yahoo.com

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  59. I LOVE your lesson plan template! Do you have that available for purchase? Thanks! cindyhersman@gmail.com.

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  60. I love your lesson plan template. Is there any way you can e-mail it to me or is it downloadable?
    my e-mail is scarey@marcellusschools.org
    Thank you
    Sandy Carey

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  61. I too, LOVE your lesson plan template. Are you willing to share? My email is cbjorklund@cashmere.wednet.edu Thank you so much! -carley

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