I just came across some cute Brown Bear activities that would've gone great with my lessons last week. Oh well, I'm sure we'll come across Brown Bear again sometime this year! Check out her blog Cole's Little Pups. Also, we had "Bb" week last week and had a lesson on blowing bubbles with bubble gum. My sweeties forgot to throw their bubble gum away before they got on the bus so "you know who" got in trouble, but it was ok. I loved seeing them try to blow bubbles. We made a graph with small faces, but I just saw Mrs. Lee's pictures and I just might have to go back and make these. I'll post pictures of my graph tomorrow. Have a great week.
I grabbed these 2 sorts from A Teeny Tiny Tearcher. I made a flipchart to do whole group before I send my kiddiesto their seats to try it on their own. I am not sure how to upload the flipcart, but just leave a comment if you'd like it emailed and I will try that. I am looking at Promethean Planet to open an account, but until then, I will be glad to just email the flipcharts. Happy Teaching!!
I have been working on sight words for my NEW "Word Wall" - yay. I took the idea from Kim Adsit's websiteand tweeked it to work for my classroom. She has a free download explaining to use several different color cardstock to print the words on so that you have different colored words under each letter. For example, when a student asks for a certain waord you can tell them to look at the "red" word under letter "a". I think this will be great for my kinders. I made my own sheets to print out using the words we introduce at our school. We really don't have a "program" that we have to use, but we have used Cindy Cupp in the past and these are the words that follow her "Hop-n-Pop" portion. I have these in word and would be glad to email them if anyone wants to change the words. I printed 2 sets so that I can use them in my "Working on Words" or "Working on Writing" stations. I am hoping tom implement Daily 5 this year but that is a whole new post :) Enjoy!
I love my flipchart calendar. I would love to add a "question of the day" or a "math talk" page to the flipchart so that we not only do our calendar and calendar binders but also review something different during our calendar time each week. The kids LOVE the calendar binders and really surprised me this year when we started them. I had tried calendar binders the year before and threw them out because they were SO time consuming at first. But this year, I created a flipchart with each page of the calendar binder in it and the kids were able to follow along EASILY. It was wonderful. The flipchart made all the difference in the world with my calendar binders. I used Jessica Meacham'scalendar pages and saved them as a word doc. Then I went back and copy and pasted each page into a flipchart. Some of the pages had to be adjusted once they were pasted into the flipchart but they all worked. I love her calendar pages but this year I am mixing hers and Kim Adsit's calendar pagestogether. (I tried linking you to Kim's TpT site but the website is acting crazy. Just click on her TpT link and look for her calendar book stuff.) Her stuff is great. I wouldn't mind posting my flipchart from last year to Promethean Planet for anyone who wants it. I am assuming since Jessica Meacham's pages are posted on her website she wouldn't mind me using them in a flipchart. I will find out for sure before I upload it if anyone shows an interest. I also hung my old calendar on my board beside my activboard along with the with the straws so my sweeties could do calendar whenever I had a sub or if I was ever having trouble with technology - imagine that - right? Our calendar helper for the week filled in the old calendar with date and "today, tommorow, and yesterday" cards while the activboard calendar was done together with different kids each day. I also had a basket of manipulatives, number cards, tens frames, and so on for time fillers or math talks. Calendar time can get too long if you try to do too much though. The binders kept the kids attention and also allowed for a lot of "math talk" amoong their peers as they helped the neighbors with the binders. I had my coins, days of the week, and months of the year hung on the wall right beside the old calendar as a simple math word wall for the kids. I wish I had pictures but it is really a very simple set up.
It's been a while. I'm new at this blogging stuff and I keep forgeting to take pictures but I am trying to remember to snap more. I love seeing pictures on blogs. So helpful!! Anyway, my kinders have been working hard for the last couple of weeks and time has just flown by. In trying to explain my tiltle - "lesson learned", I need to tell you that we have been trying to hatch chicken eggs for about 2 weeks now in my classroom and my kids are growing very fond of the egg in our room. Well, on Friday morning - yes we had school on Good Friday because of make-up snow days :(, my precious, lilttle, innocent students walked into homeroom and saw me placing some eggs into a pot which was right next to our incubator full of chicken eggs. They didn't say a lot, just asked a few questions about what I was doing. As they unpacked and got settled in, I explained that we were going to boil the eggs ("boil": a new vocabulary word for most my kid) and dye the eggs ("dye": another new vocabulary words for most my kids). Realizing that they did not know what "boil" or "dye" meant, I explained to them that we would first cook, or boil, the eggs and then we would dye, or color, the eggs. I also told them that we would crack the eggs open at the end of the day and eat the egg. Instead of a great roar of excitement (like I had anticipated), coming from the mouths of my 6 year olds - all I got was silence - literally. As I put the last egg into the now boiling water, one brave little boy raised his hands and said to me "But Mrs. Richards, why are we killing our chickens?" I then realized that they thought I was using our baby chicken eggs for Easter. The lesson learned - "Don't hatch eggs the same week as boiling eggs. I am positive that some of my kinders still think we cooked and ate some of our chicken eggs. Poor kids!! Here are a few things we did. We wrote about Peter Rabbit and what we would do if we were him - I think the idea came forom Mrs. Lee's bog. (Wonderful bog!!)
We also wrote about our "Blooming Friendships" in our classroom.(from anoter blog but a mixture of several). I think "Luv to Teach K" blog was where the writing idea came from.
Here is our Easter egg hunt and a picture of my kids dying eggs. Over 1/2 my class had never dyed eggs before. It was nice spending Good Friday with my kids. We really enjoyed our day.
A teacher at my school did both f these activities and I thought they were so cute. I loved the elephants with Letter E words on the trunks. I was hoping to think of all 5 vowels with animals but haven't figured it out yet :). The windsock used patterned streamers and designed with the same pattern strips.
We worked on maps and globes last week. We read several versions of Little Red Riding Hood and mapped out her walk to her grandma's house from each story. We did several othere things with these books, but I forgot to take pictures :( . did get a snapshot of our writings though. We wrote about our grandma or "someone special" that we like to go visit and made a Little Red to hold the story. I kinda made up the pattern but TLC does have a cuter one.
I got this idea from Mrs. Lee's blog. The kids used q-tips and painted a certain number of teeth in each mouth. The kids really liked this. This will be a very simple activity to work into any theme. Next week I hope to put it in the independent math station. They should be able to do this without too much mess.
My oldest daughter, Maddie, is turning 16 years old tomorrow. Sad but exciting - no more running all over Dalton with 15 kids in the car, no more shuttles to sporting events, dances, parties, church, trips to the store for "a snack she really needs tomorrow morning", ...... Like I said, sad but exciting!!! Happy Birthday Maddie!!
We are doing an experiment about brushing our teeth from a unit I bought from First Grade Parade. The kids love this science experiment. They are observing 2 different eggs in coke and tea. I am going to do a writing activity on Friday - hopefully :)!! I will post pictures.
We were working on Days of the Week last week. I read Cookie's Week and we wrote about our favorite part. After discussing the mess that Cookie made, we thought about what kind of mess the Cat in the Hat would make at our school if he came for a visit one week. All my kids drew pictures for each day so they would have a "plan" because I knew this writing could take a while. The next day, they pulled out their "plan" and began writing their own book. They were so funny with the things the Cat would mess up. Boy, they thought the Cat in the Hat would be WILD! One of my sweet little boys did write that on Friday, Cat would clean up all his mess. :) One group chose only 1 day and they made their own book as a group, and the others are still working. They are really enjoying this activity. I will post some of the finished books soon.
Well, I thought I'd actually share something that is my own idea - I think. (It's hard to think for myself when everybody has so many neat things out there.) Anyway - I was at the Dollar Tree and found these ice "cubes". They are plastic cubes that are full of water. I thought I could make different dice for my students to use. The regular,wooden dice are just so dang loud when they land on the tables from about 4 feet up.:) These should be a little quieter, as long as they don't burst. (The foam ones might not be that expensive, but these are yours to customize.) I plan on using a marker to add either numbers, sight words, or letters. Hope your not shopping in Dalton cause I bought them all :)
I have a few things that have helped me with my Literacy Centers this year. I have these book boxes (ice cube trays from Wal-mart). The boxes house their little readers, a pencil pouch that holds their individual sight word cards, and a diary they use for independent writing. The sight words are just sight words ran front to back (sight words on front and a student assigned # on the back). The kids love playing sight word games with a partner and the # on the back helps the cards get returned to the cprrect pouch if it ever gets lost. They are laminated and given out as each student passes an assement. I hope to re-use these cards next year (which is why I laminated them). So far, the cards have helped up well.
I have also used a seperate set of shelves that holds their work from centers. I was noticing that several students were not getting finished with their response sheets, art or even their "write the room" activity while doing centers. They would have to take home incomplete work or we would have to find a place for them to put their unfinished art until they could get back to it. Then, if they took home the unfinished sheet, they would have to start over when they came back to that center another day. Now, if they have work that did not get finished in centers, they find their name on the side and leave it there until they go back to that center later in the week. They have to wait until they go back to that particular center, or they can finish it at other times of the day if they get a chance. This has helped me not stress over finding stuff that they can complete in a 15 minute time frame. They can take their time and fill in the entire sheet. They like not having to rush too.
Last, but not least, I have been trying to sort my center activities. I was originally trying to keep things together by themes, but there were so many activities that could be used in several themes and when I finally came across the theme box and found an activity, I would think about all the other weeks I could have really used this particular game or activity. Now, I have started filing 1 paper copy of the activity (whether it is a picture of the activity, a worksheet, or a copy of the game box's lid) into a hanging file labeled "ABC Center", or "Writing Center" and so on... This has been great. I keep all my games on a shelf and if I come across the copy of the game's box lid in one of the particular file folders, I know the game is on the shelf and not filed in some box with a theme.
We've been busy all week learning about the symbols of America. It's been neat seeing how the kids are beginning to understand and actually appreciate things about America. They sound so sweet and sincere when they try to put it into their own words. The unit is from Mrs. Jump's Class and we have loved it. Here is 1 picture doing the measuring with the Satue of Liberty's foot. I have some with our drawings and our data. I will post them tomorrow.
I made 2 separate printables with a St. Patrick's Day theme in mind. One for begining sounds and the other for vowel sounds. These are to be used with the large letter stamps. I saw this on Mrs. Lee's Kinderarten blog. This is obviously my first attempt to upload using Google docs. and I am still trying to figure it out. Hope it works!! :)
I thought I'd share these from Christmas and maybe you could adapt them for Valentine's Day or Easter. I actually did some like these last year for our Easter baskets with bunny handprints and they turned out very cute.