Sunday, October 30, 2011

Word Family Printable

Hello! I am always looking for fun and new ideas for teaching word families. I saw this idea awhile ago...I am not sure exactly where I found it (sorry!), but it was a word family book, with houses for each word family. It also had lines under the house for the children to write sentences. I think it was originally on a first grade blog. I adapted it a little for my kindergarten class. This week we will be working on the "-at" family, so I put a cat on the roof of the house as a visual for them. They will fill in "at" on the blank line (in the roof) and then fill in each row of the house with words like fat, cat, hat, sat, etc. I eliminated the lines for sentences at this point; I may add them later in the year. You can find the template here.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Do you eat Lays potato chips??

Ha! Thought that title might get your attention...if you're like me and just have time to grab a quick yogurt for lunch, potato chips sound pretty good right now!!  Anyway...here's the reason for the title...a few years ago, my boys started eating the Lays potato chips in the blue can...the ones similar to Pringles, but a little bit cheaper! So, being a teacher, I knew I could find a use for those cool plastic containers. I saved a few of them and use them to store learning games like this:
And this...

Here are the details...I have a couple of "Zap" games ( or Bang, Buzz, etc.) The children choose a card from the can. (This one has sight words.) If they can read the word, they get to keep it. If not, it goes back in the can. The "Zap" card means they have to put all of their cards back into the can. The cute bear that says "Free" is just a freebie...so everyone has the chance to keep a card, even those who may struggle with the sight words. = )
I have a beginning sounds "Zap" game, too. The children have to name the letter the picture starts with.
This game is for matching upper and lowercase letters. Each game board has different upper case letters on it. The children (2 players) take turns choosing a lowercase letter from the can. If they have the matching upper case on their board, they keep it; if not, it goes back into the can.
I made these game boards a  l o n g  time ago on my original turquoise iMac...before OS X for Mac! I know I am dating myself here....but I have always loved using clip art to make stuff...back then I think it was called Appleworks!! Yikes! We've progressed a lot since those days!! Anyway...I don't have the originals for these anymore, but they are still in pretty good shape. I typed up the directions and taped them around the can using packing tape and they've held up great, too.  The cans are the perfect size for children to get their hands in and out without any problems.  The next time you grocery shop, you may need to get some Lays in the blue can (and this is not a paid advertisement for them)!! Thanks for checking in and have a good day!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Calendar Routine


The first time each child is the calendar helper/line leader, we look at his/her name, name the letters, and add the name to the word wall. This year I have 17 students; so it took us 17 days to complete the names on the word wall. On the second rotation through, each child cheers his/her name. The next time through, the child does the name cheer and we clap the syllables. We do that for a few rotations, comparing "claps" before adding last names to the name cheer and clapping all of the syllables in both first and last names. We do all of this before the helper even starts giving us the information (day, month, etc etc) for the day. I think it's a fun self-esteem builder, plus the children are learning about letters and sounds as well. Thanks for checking in and have a great day!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Literacy center

(I love the cute look of Kim Adsit and Megan's blog...thought I'd give it a try!!)

Pinterest Inspiration

Hello!It has been another busy week, but I feel like my class has come a long way in just 24 days of school. We have parent teacher conferences in about 10 days; that's earlier than usual for us. After reading several other blogs, I noticed other schools are doing them around this time of year, too. Usually we have our fall conference in November, closer to Thanksgiving. My kids were DIBELed this week and I will be completing our first unit test in reading next week, so I have good information to share with parents. I have a couple of ideas to share with you...I saw these number poems on Pinterest....linked to this post by Debbie Diller. I printed each of the poems and posted them above my math focus wall.

   
I printed the numbers at 200% so they would be big!

These poems are catchy and easy for the children to memorize. I hear them chanting them throughout the day!!

I also saw this idea and thought it would make a good center activity for the children to practice abc order with lowercase letters.
Here is the original idea...
Here is my version
They love to use the bingo markers!! Thanks for looking and have a great day!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Fall Leaves

Hello! We are fortunate to live in an area of the United States where we can enjoy four distinct seasons (except I can't say that I really enjoy winter!). My class went on a fall walk to observe leaves this week and we saw this beauty!
We have a beautiful campus. We have another tree outside of our window that we can use to observe seasonal changes as well. The children collected leaves on our walk and we completed leaf rubbings when we returned to the classroom. We did this as a cooperative group projects; each table glued their leaves (vein side up) on to a large piece of paper. I taped another large piece of white paper or top of that, and then they colored...it's hard to get them to color gently...but they were happy with the results! (This is an idea I found on Pinterest last week. It worked really well to glue the leaves down first.)

There have been a lot of great science ideas shared this week on several blogs. I thought I'd share some photos of our BUG BOX. This is in my science area, for the children to use during free time. They can explore bugs using the items in the box.

There are several books about insects in the box, a magnifying jar, some stuffed bugs, and this activity, originally found here: The children match the word and the bug (from Dollar Tree) to the correct picture. I included a tweezers for picking up the bugs, for those children who may not like to touch them!
Since I LOVE to sew, I made a bug vest for the children to wear while they are exploring...I only have one vest, but so far it has never been an issue...it also promotes sharing and taking turns. : )

There is also a jar with pictures of bugs the children can graph. I  plan on adding some cute sorting activities I found, but have not had time to put together yet. This poster is from Scholastic. The children have to identify the largest bug, smallest bug, one with the most legs, etc.  Thanks for checking in and have a great day!