Monday, May 28, 2012

Happy Memorial Day

Now that I am back in the land of the living it is starting to sink in that I AM ON SUMMER BREAK :) Ahhhhhh such a great feeling!! I still have 2 more days to be at school this week, but I don't care, the kids are home until August!! Wednesday is one final dose of Common Core training before the summer, and tomorrow is our post planning day ( which is basically just make sure all your ducks are in a row and clean up your room day). I'll be spending most of it cleaning and organizing my room but NOT PACKING!! I was very excited (and relieved) to find out on Thursday that I will be returning to teach Kindergarten AND I'm in the same room. The month of May is a stressful one in the life of an annual contract teacher, and this year was especially hard with many of us returning, but many of us finding out that there "are no positions available". What a sad way to end the year :(

But on the bright side I am overjoyed not to be changing rooms. Last year I never got around to renting a storage unit so the contents of my classroom were spread across 3 garages and most of my dining room. No good. Much more to come on some of my new organizing and decorating ideas for my room...Pinterest is a beautiful thing :)

For now, I am linking up again with Classroom Freebies and sharing another ocean freebie. I hope this will be helpful for those of you still struggling through those last few days of school! I just cannot get enough of these cute ocean buddies from KPM Doodles!! (PS. Everything in my store is still 20% off today in celebration of Memorial day!!)

I Can Read in the Ocean

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Not so smooth start to summer

Hi friends!! I'm finally starting to feel alive again. I spent most of the last week in school fighting a cold and Friday I officially lost the fight. It's a miracle that I made it through the day. I've been completely out of it since then...what a way to start summer!!


I'm linking up with Kindergarten lifestyle and throwing a Memorial Day sale in my store today and tomorrow. Everything is 20% off :)

Have a great holiday weekend...we are having a tropical storm down here in Florida!!

Monday, May 21, 2012

LAST MONDAY OF THE YEAR ... (and a freebie)

Today was my last Monday of the year and tomorrow is our last full length day!! I will probably be at school well into next week packing up and doing post planning Common Core meetings but I don't care...summer is within my sights :)

I snagged this adorable little Kindergarten Memory Book from Jennifer Elliot this weekend.



In the midst of performance practices, field days, talent shows, and movie parties,(not to mention giant wolf spiders that have started invading our rooms) we started working on the memory books today and they are turning out SO CUTE! I was CRACKING UP at the drawings and sentences about their teacher. Most of my kids drew me in a purple dress (my favorite color is purple, yes but I think I have worn a dress to school MAYBE once this year...maybe). I got a lot of "My teacher is pretty" (Gold star for those kids) "My teacher is a princess" (Two gold stars haha), but my favorite by far was "She is our boss".

I can't wait to see the rest of the pages that we do tomorrow. Click here to find the book in Jennifer's store...it's on sale for a dollar!!

And while you are there don't forget to check out my Summer Skills Pack :)




FINALLY, since I didn't want to miss out on the Manic Monday fun, here's is one last ocean freebie :)

Ocean Word Search


Classroom freebies

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Summer Skills Practice

It was totally not my intention to create one of these packs, but I was going through report cards this weekend thinking about my littles who will be leaving me so soon and I started thinking that I wanted them to have something just to help them reinforce their skills over the summer so they are at least a little more fresh in their minds come August. So I started throwing together some pages and before I knew it I had this:



I'll be honest, I created this solely with my class in mind with the skills that I knew they most needed to practice so this product might not be for everyone, but I decided to post it in my store just in case it could be useful to others as well.

We are all about mini books in my room so I made each week into a book. I figured that might be easier for my parents than keeping track of a calendar or a bunch of papers.

This is the free preview that shows the entire contents of one book. There are 8 books in all:


Summer Pack Demo

The whole pack is on sale right now for only $3.00. You can click here to find it in my store

Saturday, May 19, 2012

"Dinosaurs, big as trees..."

5 school days left until summer and this teacher is SO ready. I have been neglecting my poor little blog this week, and I'm currently fighting a headache and avoiding report cards so this is going to be short and sweet. But I did want to share a few pictures from the end of our dinosaur unit.

On Monday we finished up dinosaurs with some fun stations. My sand FINALLY dried so I was able to bury the pasta pieces and have the kids "dig them up". This was so funny to watch. Some of them were so meticulous about it...brushing off every last grain of sand before placing their "bone" in the right place on their sorting mat. They had to find enough of each bone in the sand before they could build their dino. I used jumbo shells for the skull, rotini for the spine, linguini for the ribs and mini pene to make the arms and legs. Apparently I didn't get a shot of the finished "T-Rex" but they turned out pretty cute.



They also got to make fossils using Play-doh and these great dinosaur skeletons I snagged from Amazon.




I forgot to snap a picture of the dinosaur directed drawing that they did at a third station but they turned out SO cool! I just found these on Making Learning Fun and I am going to print and laminate a bunch of them to use for next year!

I meant to share this earlier...my kids absolutely could not get enough of this song!! They were singing it to themselves during centers. (We did have to have a little talk about how the singer was not actually saying the "a" word...even I went scrambling for the mouse the first time I heard it haha)



OK that's all I have for now...like I said, short and sweet. I suppose I should get back to my report cards now.

Here I go...



I'm going...






....oh look, Piterest.....

:)

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Gearing up for oceans

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday


Oh goodness is it going to be a busy 2 weeks. We are finishing up dinosaurs on Monday and then "diving" into oceans until the end of the year. Plus starting practices for our end of the year performance, CUM folders, finishing assessments, water field day and trying to wrangle 18 summer-crazy 5 and 6 year olds for 10 more days.

I am very excited to get into our ocean unit. Somehow I never made it to oceans last year. Tonight I am going to share some ocean morning work sheets. I shared a farm version of these a few weeks ago. These make great skill reviews in the morning. I usually put a reading one on one side and a math one on the other side. I hope you find them useful :)

Morning Work Oceans

Giveaway winners :)

First of all Happy Mother's Day to all you moms out there :) I hope you are having a lovely day!

Here are the 2 winners from my giveaway...

Jen over at Jen's Kinder Kids


And Kate Luxon

Congratulations ladies...I'm headed over to email you and ask what you want me to send you :)

Friday, May 11, 2012

Crazy for dinosaurs!

One day I will blog throughout the week and share little snippets and ideas instead of giant photo filled posts...but today is not that day :) What a fun week we have had with our dinosaur unit! Here's some of the fun stuff we did...

We learned all about Triceratops and then wrote facts about him. I love how this guy is shaded just like my picture that I used for our circle map.


Stegosaurus patterning...for all my love of the new Common Core math standards, I REFUSE to leave patterning behind :) This cute idea came from Anna over at Kindergarten Khronicles



More making 10 activities.


This project was inspired by this post over at Mrs. Plant's Press. I forgot to snap a picture of the finished product but they turned out so cute and ended up being a great little math activity. It's hard to see from the picture but the kiddos started with 10 red dots and wrote the number sentence for yellow and red dots.Then they flipped one over at a time and wrote each consecutive number sentence on each plate until they had filled all 11 combinations. Then they wrote 10 on the stegosaurus's belly :) I found a class set of these ten frames and two sided counters in the copy room giveaway pile at school last week SCORE!


Another idea from Kindergarten Khronicles. We learned all about how dinosaurs come from eggs and made these cute little guys and wrote about the three stages of life from egg to little dinosaur to big dinosaur.


Some of our math centers (somehow I never got any pics of our literacy centers).




I had planned to bury pasta in sand today and let the kids dig it up and make a dinosaur skeleton but the sand was still wet and needed to be aired out (I bought playground sand in a bag from Walmart and they store it OUT in the RAIN! How does that make sense??) So we will technically be finishing up our dinosaur unit on Monday with that activity and this great idea I found over at Mrs. Lee's Kindergarten :)




OK if you have stayed with me this far....I have 2 more things...

1. Don't forget to enter my giveaway (click here for the post). It ends tomorrow night at Midnight!!

and 2. Here is one last dinosaur freebie. I used this during my formal evaluation this week and it went GREAT. This was the first time I actually had the kiddos fill in their own double bubble and I was so impressed with their thinking :)

Dinosaur Double Bubble

Have a great weekend and Happy Mother's Day to all you mommies :)

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Teacher appreciation giveaway

Happy Teacher Appreciation week everyone. I hope you are all feeling loved and appreciated :) My kiddos have been so sweet this week bringing me goodies in the mornings. Their handwritten cards this morning were absolutely adorable. One of my boys actually wrote me a card WHILE he was sitting in time out ha!

I have lots of fun dinosaur stuff to share with you but it will have to wait until my camera and computer to decide to start speaking to each other again (I would really hate technology if I didn't love it so much!!). In the meantime, I had wanted to do a giveaway when I reached 50 followers but I had a big spike this week while I wasn't looking so now it will be a 60 follower/tail end of teacher appreciation week giveaway :)


This will be really simple. Just follow my blog and my TPT store. Leave a separate comment for each one, and I will pick 2 winners to receive one item of their choice from my store. Make sure you leave your email address in your comment :) Giveaway ends Saturday at midnight

Monday, May 7, 2012

Manic Monday and a sale!

Happy Monday blogging world. I don't know about you but we only have 14 days of school after today!! Woohooo! This girl is SO ready for summer!

I am linking up again with Classroom Freebies. I'm starting to love this weekly tradition :) This week I am sharing a quick math book that I whipped up last night as a quick sub activity for a few teammates who needed some emergency activities. It is dino themed because we are living, breathing and eating dinosaurs right now. Our kiddos are really very comfortable with their ten frames and teen numbers these days but a little extra practice never hurt anyone especially heading into summer :)

I See 20 Dinosaurs

Also, don't forget about the fabulous Teacher Appreciation sale going on over at TPT. The discount code is TAD12 and I am offering an extra 20% off in my store.

Everything is on sale including my brand new Ocean Math Unit




And my ocean themed interactive books. My kids LOVE these!



Don't forget to leave me some love if you download my freebie and have a great day everyone :)

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Teacher appreciation



Click here to go to my store! Happy shopping and happy teacher appreciation week !!!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Focus walls

I've been wanting to share these pictures of my focus walls for a while. In my room I have this great big wall (which was already painted blue when I moved in..score). This wall has always been my main calendar area but last spring my teaching partner and I were inspired by a faculty meeting on focus walls and we decided to make one of our own...Kindergarten style :) It started last year with the spring wall, and throughout the year this year I changed it around to match the season. My kids LOVE THIS. Their favorite thing to do during free time or if they finish early is to grab a pointer and go back and forth on the wall. They spout off sight words, sing the songs, and chant the combinations for the different numbers. The other day I actually heard them quizzing each other "Close your eyes and tell me what 2 numbers I have to make 14" HA! It also adds a great visual to the room :)

Here's some pics I have snapped over the course of the year. There is usually a calendar, a song or poem for the month, and months of the year and days of the week to go through calendar time (this time has had to be VERY short this year due to scheduling issues)...

The first one I did this year was my fall wall. The kids were SO SAD when I took the scarecrow down! The pumpkins in the pumpkin patch had all the different representations of #'s 1-5, the scarecrow had sentence strips with simple sentences like "I see a brown hat" "I see a yellow shirt", and sight words on the corn (almost cut off in the right side of the picture). Nothing on the leaves of the tree but I have plans for that next year ;)


The only reason I didn't have mutiny on my hands when I took down the scarecrow is because I put up this snowman :) I snapped the picture before the color word buttons went up. The penguins all had numbers on their ice burgs and the snowflakes around the snowman had the sight words.


The spring wall might be my favorite...it's just so colorful and fun :) The butterflies have color words on the bodies that match their wings, the giant flower (ala "The Tiny Seed") has combinations to make teen numbers, and the rest of the flowers have my calendar and sight words on them. (The songs and months had not made it up when this pic was snapped)




I usually try to have the kids "help" construct them each time we put a new one up. They tell me where to put the ten frames or dot cards. I try not to think about the day that I am in a different room and won't have this awesome space to play with, but for now my kids are absolutely loving our focus walls.