One Hundred Days of School and Still Counting

Feb. 4, 2013 ~ The first 100 days of school flew by and were properly celebrated by first-graders at Sunnyside Elementary School on Jan. 30.

"The 100th day is a celebration of first-grade learning, teamwork, problem solving, and being 100 days smarter!" said first-grade teacher Kem Selman.

Everything the first-graders did that day focused on the number 100.

  • Some students and teachers dressed as if they were 100 years old.
  • They read and answered questions about "100th Day Worries," a book by Margery Cuyler.
  • Everyone created a 100th day book to remind them of everything they've learned so far this year.
  • Colorful cereal necklaces were strung and admired.

"I want the students to be excited about the number 100," Selman said. "I plan activities that will reinforce the idea that 100 is 10 sets of 10.

"As we write the book of 100 things, students begin to see how much 100 is, yet broken into parts it's not as hard as it first appeared."

The same theory applies to the activity where first-graders write 100 words they know. At first it may seem daunting, but Selman tackles it one part at a time: a list of 10 things that are small, another list of 10 things that are round, and so forth.

"They are amazed at themselves and proud to be able to do that," she said.

This year 100 took on a new look when first-grade teachers Lisa Hamilton and Michelle Lauby decided to dress like centenarians, and they encouraged their students to do the same. The other students wore their special class T-shirts to get in the spirit.

"I've been teaching for almost 15 years and we have been celebrating the 100th day since I began teaching," Hamilton said.

First-grade old lady Some first-graders donned shawls and glasses, and had baby powder sprinkled in their hair to give them a more mature look. One of the four activity stations involved stringing 100 colored cereal loops on yarn to make a necklace.
Counting while exercising Lisa Hamilton’s first-grade classroom served as an exercise area on the 100th day of school. Students could choose to hop on one foot, take 100 steps around the room, or toss a ball to a friend while counting to 100.
Brainstorming answers A touch of gray hair (made possible with baby powder) was a common sight in the first-grade classrooms. These students helped brainstorm 10 words for each of 10 topics to go in a book.
Students doing number search Lindsay Krueger’s project for students included searching for specific numbers (1 to 100) in a game. Students rotated between the four first-grade classrooms for about 90 minutes and then returned to their own classroom more activities with their teacher.
Bouncing a ball 100 times

Bouncing a ball 100 times is serious business, especially when your classmates are doing jumping jacks, taking 100 steps around the room or doing exercises as they count to 100. The exercise activity gave students a short break from the quiet projects going on in other first-grade rooms.

Photos by Marlene Colgan
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