Sunday, July 31, 2011

Gummy Bears

Gummy Bears!
I just had to repost this from Dr. Jean and Friends!  It's an interactive song that is sung to the tune of Five Little Ducks.  The song is on her CD Is Everybody Happy?

I love the suggestion that you can make it seasonal.  I'm thinking 5 LITTLE ROBOTS or 5 LITTLE ALLIGATORS...

I'm going to have some fun di-cutting shapes.  I'll post pictures when I've made some!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Totally Transitions Tips

I've been spending a lot of time lately updating my website to document my journey into Kindergarten, but the start of school is just on the horizon and I'm starting to feel less than prepared.  My main worry?
I know how important routines, schedules, and transitions are for Kindergarteners, so I've scoured books and the internet for transitions that I LOVE!

Top 5 Transitions Tips
Drumroll, Please

Transitions Tip #1
Music Playlists and Sound Bites

Simply 2nd Resources uses pre-made playlists for beginning the day, transitions, calming, and ending the day.  Check it out!

Primary Connections uses music sound bites like "Aye Aye Captain" from Spongebob Squarepants to signal it's time to clean up. 

First Class With Mrs. Mac uses sound bites of theme songs from popular movies or television shows like Jeopardy or Mission Impossible.

Curls and a Smile plays a song that give the kids time to clean up AND DANCE (if they finish cleaning up quick enough).

Mrs. Bee's KinderGarden  uses a song to gather everyone to the carpet, and if everyone is in their spot by the time the music ends, they get a "gumball" on the incentive chart! (I LOVE IT!!)

Gracehopper Learning loves Dr. Jean CD's.  (As a newbie to Kindergarten I must admit that I don't have any.  So, this is something for me to check out!)

Monday, July 25, 2011


Well, I'm finally at a stopping point for my website.  I've been gathering and organizing lots of information about great teaching and posting it to my website.  Next, I'll be posting more personalized information and pictures from my class IN ACTION!  
That will be lots of fun!

I'd love to hear what you think!

I'll be posting more soon about my Back to School plans, Classroom Organization, and First Day ideas!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Awesome Blogs

I have a confession to make:  I've become addicted to blogs.  I tell myself that I can stop any time that I want, but I don't want!!  Here are just a couple that I've come across that are A-MA-ZING!


Dr. Jean & Friends

Amazing ideas, songs, cheers, management and fun!!

Yes!  Dr. Jean!

Clutter-Free Classroom

Great organization and management tips, plus themes and lessons!

Little Priorities

Lots of great ideas for management, lessons, organization!  Gotta love organization!!

Check out these great blogs!!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Letters In My Name Lapbook

I recently discovered lapbooks, and I am hooked!

 I saw a tri-fold section on a lapbook on Beach Monkeys blog that had her son matching the letters in his name.  I decided to take that section and make a little twist on it.   I like the idea of James matching the letters in his name, but I knew that sometimes the fonts of certain letters throw him off.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Magnetic fish game

I made this cute magnetic fishing game for my boys.

I got the idea from this blog:

I didn't make them counting fish, but if I make some more I think I will.

They were really fun to make!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Counting Cars Book


I wanted to try my hand at making a little counting book for James. 

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Paint Sample Cards

I've seen a lot of uses for paint sample cards out there, and I don't want to forget them.  So, I'm posting some of them here and on a page in my website.  If you know or think of more, let me know!  Also, please ask the manager for the discarded sample.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Flannel Story Board

A neighbor moved out and put a lot of unwanted items on the curb, among them was a cork board, absolutely clean and usable in every way!  So, I picked it up and covered it with black flannel to use as a story board this coming year.  The little flannel characters I picked up at a garage sale, and the green flannel grass was bought this weekend at JoAnn's for 50% off.

cork board, scissors, black flannel, stapler

cover, trim, staple


Don't Blame the Lettuce

I always have a picture of a head of lettuce up in my classroom as a reminder to not blame the lettuce.  This sounds funny, but I read a passage in a book called, Peace is Every Step, that really made me think about my perceptions.

Blaming Never Helps- "When you plant lettuce, if it does not grow well, you don't blame the lettuce.  You look for reasons it is not doing well.  It may need fertilizer, or more water, or less sun.  You never blame the lettuce.  Yet if we have problems with our friends or our family, we blame the other person.  But if we know how to take care of them, they will grow well, like lettuce."

Crate Seats

Finally, I've made the crate seats!  I looked at a lot of different posts and websites about how to make crate seats.  I saw some that had the plywood on the inside lip of the crate with a chair cushion tied on the crate, and others had a lot of cushioning inside with the fabric stapled to the wood.  I thought the chair cushion was a great idea, that way you could wash the cushions or replace them easily.  BUT I couldn't find cushions at a reasonable price, and making them was beginning to look as expensive, plus very time consuming.

I decided that was important to me was cleanliness, multipurpose surface, and ease of construction.  I wanted the surface to be either removable or washable, so I went with a heavy weight vinyl tablecloth fabric so that I can disinfect it easily.  I wanted the cushion to be soft enough to sit on, but firm enough to use as a writing surface/table if needed.  Finally, I wanted the construction to be as easy and inexpensive as possible.

Pringles Speaker

I love love love using old things in new ways, and this is a really fun deal from Pringles.  Basically if you save your receipts from buying 4 cans of Pringles and mail them in, Pringles will send you a speaker.  You can plug it into your computer, Ipod, or MP3 player.  Here is a link to a YouTube video on a guy opening and reviewing the speaker.  We don't eat too many Pringles, but I think I'm going to go get some.  I'll let you know what I think when the speaker comes in.

Pattern Tube

I was at a Science training yesterday and an idea was presented creating a small folded envelope in which to slide paper patterns in and out.  I thought that it would be nice to reuse paper towel rolls for the same purpose!  I didn't have any empty paper towels tubes (and I'm not sure how my husband would handle me unraveling all the paper towels for the tube), so I made a short one out of a toilet paper tube.  Now, I'm a knitter, so I have tons of scraps of yarn.  I took a length of black yarn and tied colors on to create a pattern.  To complete the activity with the children, slip the length of yarn in the tube and slowly pull the yarn out to reveal the Mystery Pattern!  Children could use this at a station by recreating the pattern with cubes or coloring.  I thought it might also be fun to print out letters of sight words, laminate and hole punch, then tie them onto the yarn and pull to figure out the sight word, letter by letter!  


So here they are, mailboxes from Capri Sun juice boxes!  There are a few bubbles and bumps from the packing tape underneath, but I think it came out pretty good.  The decorations and letters are wall art stickers that I bought at Dollar Tree.
Here are more specific directions:

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