Sunday, July 31, 2011

Back to School Sale!!!

If you are like me, you have been filling your TpT wishlist this summer.  I know I will be taking advantage of the 10% discount TpT is offering from August 1 to August 6 (use code B1T1S).   I will also place my items on sale for an additional 20% off!  

Here are some of my Back to School items you may be interested in:

(These are aligned with Common Core Standards)

Literacy Stations


Friday, July 29, 2011

This and That...

I have already blogged about this adorable color book that I "discovered" while I was in New Orleans, but I created an emergent reader to go with it!  
Click on the image to grab this FREEBIE from my Google Docs.
For more on this book you can go here.

I have also been busy loading some more Back to School items on TpT!
As promised~
AND~Some familiar games.  You may know these formats if you have bought any of my CVC or Roll, Say, Keep games from last year.  I love that my kiddos only have to learn a few simple games, but by changing the materials, I can keep those games fresh for the whole year.  

As you know, when you are teaching small groups, you really don't have time to re-teach a game EVERY time you switch themes.   I want my kiddos to be independent.  By keeping the games familiar, I can keep them engaged in a meaningful way.

I am so excited!  I will be able to get back into my classroom next week.  I will be posting some of my classroom photos with resources.  

Ok... What do you think about a classroom video tour??  I'm not sure how brave I am, but I may attempt it next week.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Daily Math Journals FREEBIE

I started REALLY using math journals last year and LOVED it!  Math journals are a great way to reinforce and review math concepts in a creative way.  Once your students get used to the process, they can be done in just a few minutes.  I had this 15 minute slot of time each day ~ during this 15 minutes my students would color their behavior day, pack up their backpack, and complete their math journal ~ we were MOVIN'!!

Click on the image to grab it from my TpT store for FREE
This download includes the labels for your students' journals, instructions on how I used the journals, and 5 prompts to get you started.

I will be adding monthly thematic prompts in a few days... but here is a little taste!

I have added the complete set!
Click on the picture to find these.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Love this!

 How cute is this Dr. Seuss bracelet?
Stop by 4th Grade Frolics to find out how you can get your own!!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Common Core Standards

I know the Common Core Standards have some people nervous... I totally get that!
But wouldn't you just know it?  Deanna Jump has made it easier!

Click on the image to go to her store.

This product is MASSIVE!!!  LOVE IT!  I think this will help keep me focused and the language of these standards in my head (and in front of my eyes).

These can be beautifully displayed in my classroom and they are in kid friendly language!

 Thank you Mrs. J!

UPDATE: Common Core Assessment Packets

Year Long Planning and Math Stations

Today was one of those days where I had BIG PLANS... However, I was not as productive as I wanted to be.

I will be back with some of my beginning of the year plans, but I wanted to tell you about this!!!

Click on the image to go to Jackie's Blog
Mrs. Gray and I teach in the same district, but sadly, in different buildings.  As part of our Instructional Literacy Team, we mapped out our year in Reader's Workshop and Writer's Workshop.  If you are like me, I LIKE to know where I am going from time-to-time (unless I'm shopping... I can just wander then.)

Also, I just added this to my TpT Store!

Click on the image to go to my TpT store.

It is on sale for $3.  It includes 3 math work stations with DIFFERENTIATION...
Woo Hoo!

Back to School FREEBIE!

Hello friends!  I am working on putting together a glimpse of my first few weeks of school.  In the meantime, here is a little FREEBIE for you!

Click on the image to grab it from my TpT store~FREE
If you like this format, you can find more at my  TpT store.  You may want to follow my store so you will be notified (via email) of my new products.

It is BLAZIN' HOT here, so try to stay cool!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

It's a Small World

So while we were in New Orleans for my husband's award,
I met the SWEETEST lady.  Although her English was not very good, she told me the story of how she came to America.  It all started 29 years ago when she met a young Ensign in the Navy.  He was assigned to a duty station in Japan.   Because she came from a traditional Japanese family, her father did not approve of this American suitor and he left Japan with a broken heart AND without Takako.

Then 28 years later, he was sent back to Japan as a Navy Captain and  he decided to find out what happened to her.  They were married 10 days ago.
 She is such a wonderful lady.  Then I asked her, what did she do in Japan.  Naturally... She was a kindergarten teacher!  It is a small world!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Did you hear?

My good friend is giving away some goodies!  Please stop by Nicole's blog to enter a chance to win your choice from my TpT store AND a gift card to TARGET!!!

Hop over to her blog to enter!  Woo Hoo!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Greetings from The Big Easy!

So... I am here in New Orleans with my family to honor my husband who is one of the 2010 Naval Officer of the Year recipients.  I am so proud of him!  I decided to leave my laptop at home, but then I saw THIS!
Pete the Cat!!!  So in I went!
More of James Dean's artwork!

Then around the next corner...

I love this book.  I went in to see George Rodrique's artwork!

So, I borrowed my husband's laptop for a quick blog fix!

Don't you love Blue Dog?

Monday, July 11, 2011

Math Work Stations Blog Party Chapter 8 Measurement

Seriously?... We are at the end of the book?  I am feeling a little sad.  This has been such a fun adventure to go through with you all.  We will have to plan something else soon!  Ok... here we go!

Here is an activity where the students will take real classroom objects to compare.  Their task is to find something that is longer, shorter, and the same sizes as their object (ie book, scissors...) and draw it.  There are 3 different sheets so this activity could be sustained over a 3-4 week period.
Click on the image to download
I thought about creating some vocabulary cards, but then I saw these... LOVE them!
These came from Jayne at Kindergarten Rhode.  Click on the image to go to her blog.
As you know, I love Kim Adsit's math products.  I bought this a while ago, but it still holds up to great teaching.  This product includes story problems and 10 measurement activities.  They are adorable!
Click on the image to go to Kim's store.
Here is a super cute time game that Rachelle from What the Teacher Wants posted back in March.  I love the simplicity of it.  My kiddos loved it too last year... wish I could find a picture of them playing it!
Click on the image to go to her blog!
I have also blogged in the past about length and weight.  You can grab some ideas and FREEBIES here:

Thank you Lory for hosting this week's Math Work Stations Blog Party!!!  Please stop by her blog to see her A~MAZ~ING post!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Teacher's Notebook

How would you like to earn a gift SHOPPING?
Click on this image to learn more about the reward program.
 I am kind-of excited because I just loaded some of my products on The Teacher's Notebook.  With each purchase, you earn points... Collect the points to get your gift card!  AWESOME!

I have my eye on Lakeshore!  Love that place!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Parent's Guide to Kindergarten Writing

I have been carrying around sheet of paper that helps explain kindergarten writing to parents.  I have FINALLY adapted it and plan on sharing it with my parents.

I would love your feedback!  Also... please let me know if you notice a typo!

Pillows for your classroom library

When I first started teaching I was flat broke!  Sound familiar?

But I wanted to have color coordinated pillows for my classroom library... So I made some!

These pillows are about 5 years old so they are a little frayed.  They are balancing on top of Theodora's cage.  She loves it~makes her feel like a cave dwelling guinea pig!

These are super simple and CHEAP! Here's how:
  1. I rounded up some pillow forms.  I had some that went with my old comforter set and a few bedroom pillows that had lost their um-pf!
  2. I bought some inexpensive bathroom towels at Wally World.
  3. Then I wrapped the towel around the pillow form and pin the sides. Since not all pillows are the exact same size, this makes your pattern and determines where you want to run your seam. 
  4. Then, with my handy-dandy Brother sewing machine, I run two seams (see the picture).
  5. Turn the towel inside out and you have a pocket to slide your pillow into. 

I love that they are durable and washable!  I take them home several times a year and toss the towel into the washing machine.  I have never had a problem with the l-word (rhymes with twice), but if I did, a trip to the washer would solve it.

My students drag these all over the classroom.  They are wonderful for buddy reading.  Two kiddos can sit on a standard sized pillow.  It keeps them close and comfy!

I am thinking I may want to remake some this summer.  I may splurge and pay more than the $1.97 each for the towels.  I may even add a color coordinated ribbon or something along those lines. 

You guys are so creative, so I would love to see what you come up with.  If you do make some, comment with a link to your blog (or email me photos).  I can then post them for you.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

And Another Thing! Giveaway

I have had the pleasure of looking through Maggie's wonderful Math Giveaway products!  I can just image how my students will love using these journal pages.  They are filled with great hands-on math explorations where students can let their creative side shine!

Please hop over to her blog to enter her fantastic GIVEAWAY!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Math Work Stations Blog Party Chapter 7 Geometry AGAIN!

As promised... Here are a few more of my reflections on Geometry.  

Debbie Diller suggests having your kiddos go on a Shape Hunt (p.165).  My students LOVE doing this with magazines.  I start them out hunting for various colors at the beginning of the year.  Once they understand the process, we can move onto shapes.  
click on the image to grab it from Google Docs

Another suggestion was to go on treasure hunt using positional words... LOVE this idea.  I created a little FREEBIE.  You can hide the "backpack" in your classroom.  Then place the clue cards around the room.  I have never tried this, but I imagine they will love this activity.

Click on the image to go to my TpT store for this FREEBIE!

News FLASH!!!!  The very SMART Virginia suggested the students could draw the route the students take to find the backpack!  BRILLIANT!!!!!

If you enjoyed this free download, you may want to "follow me" on TpT.  You will then be notified every time I post a new item.

Thank you Mrs. Patton for hosting this week's chapter!  You will want to go to her page to see her AMAZING post!  Isn't it great to have such smart blog friends?

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Back to School Work Stations and 15% off sale

Ok...  I have to admit that I feel a little like one of those diamond liquidators you hear on the radio, "Sale ends on the 4th of July!!!"  However, I did extend my sale until tomorrow.  There was a little glitch with TpT and I heard you were unable to put my Back-to-School activities in your TpT shopping cart.  I believe ALL of the issues have been resolved and we are now "Good to Go!"
Students can sort letters 8 different ways.  It includes a response sheet for each sort.

This board game includes over 120 addition and subtraction game cards.

Students can practice their place values (10-20)
Have a wonderful 4th of July!!!!

Math Work Stations Blog Party Chapter 7 Geometry

One of my students favorite morning work activities is to play with my pattern blocks.  Once we have gotten the first-of-the-year exploration out of the way, I ask them to make pictures out of their pattern blocks.

These are from Kelly's Kindergarten. Thanks Angela from Just Love Teaching for finding the source for me!
Click on the image to grab a copy of these patterns.
Angela also found some great patterns at PreKinders.  Angela is SoOoO smart!

In the past I have just printed out the shape puzzles to a full page.  This year I will try to kick it up a notch, by having the puzzle images smaller than the actual shapes.

I will also add a response page.  After the students have built their picture, they will sort and count the shapes.

Click on the image to grab a copy.
Because the shape puzzles are smaller than the actual shapes they will be using to build the pictures, the students will need to think a bit harder (versus just placing the matching shape on top of the source document).  Debbie Diller called this being able to visualize objects and their spatial relationships (sounds fancy).

I'll be back later this week with more on Geometry Math Stations!!!

Friday, July 1, 2011

The Book Whisperer-Chapter 2 Everybody is a Reader

I am sOoO enjoying this book.  I am hosting Chapter 2. 

As a kindergarten teacher, I tried to apply the ideas Ms. Miller suggests in the terms of an emergent reader classroom.  She describes how her class can be divided into three categories of readers: Developing Readers,  Dormant Readers, and Underground Readers.

Research suggests that developing readers actually spend 75% less time reading.  Miller suggests that students need guidance to help them find books that would be a good fit.  

How do I find good fit books for my kindergarten students?  
Click on the image to go to Wilbooks
 I love Wilbooks!  It is very difficult to find engaging books for my very emergent kiddos.  I have tried to order books through Scholastic that are leveled, but I find they are not leveled in a consistent way.  Wilbooks books (awkward sounding) match the leveling system that I have in my building.  So it is simple to set a bin of books out and know my kids will find something that interests them.  My students self-select these books several times a week.  They take them home to practice and trade them when they are ready for a new book.

How do you promote independent reading in your emergent reader classroom?

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