Sunday, March 23, 2014

Earth Day Resources

It is crazy to think that we are already almost at the end of March. Spring is officially here (although the weather still hasn’t figured that out yet) which also means Easter and Earth Day are coming up.

Last year I created this Earth Day pack and just recently updated it to include more activities. I wanted to share the updates with you in hopes that it may come in handy for your classroom Earth Day learning.
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My favorite part of this pack is the Earth Man Craft.
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This pack is once again structured like all of my other themed resource packs.  Some of the things included in this pack are listed and shown below.

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KWL, Anchor Charts, Circle Maps & Facts Pages for various Earth Day related topics including classroom chart parts
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Graphing Sheet along with class graphing chart parts
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Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle activity pages
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Cut and Paste Activity to decide what is good or bad for the Earth which also includes pieces to create a class chart to be used during whole group instruction
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Nonfiction Earth Day Reader
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Reduce, Reuse, Recycle Posters to display in the classroom
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Earth Day Vocabulary Cards
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If you previously bought this pack you can redownload it to get the updates. Celebrating Earth Day makes me happy because it helps to remind me that it is Spring, my second favorite time of year (next to fall).

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Spring Fever

Anyone else having some major Spring Fever? This soon-to-be-mama is getting the Spring Fever itch as well as the baby itch. Our little girl could make her appearance any day and all I can think about is making sure we are ready for her and hoping that the weather clears up so she doesn’t freeze when we bring her home.
To help get through the Spring Fever, I created this cute craft last year and used it to deck the halls with a cute bulletin board display. The kids just ate it up.
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If you are looking for something to help curb the spring fever in your classroom, you can check out this craft (which also includes a few activity pages) by clicking on any of the pictures in this post. Happy Spring friends :)

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Transitioning Using Content Vocabulary, Sight Words Etc. Bright Idea Hop

I am very excited to be participating in the Bright Idea’s Blog Hop.

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I love seeing posts that help bring me back to what blogging really is about, sharing great ideas. During the last hop I found a TON of amazing ideas from some amazing bloggers that I just had to store away for future reference. They were just that good. If you have been hopping along you should have come from Jessica’s blog, The Littlest Scholars.

Today I am going to share one of my most favorite ways to transition in the classroom. Not only does it cut down on the quadrillion questions from students about what they are to be doing, but it also is helping students develop a greater vocabulary or practice skills/ideas used in the classroom each day. They are learning while transitioning.


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In Kindergarten we have several sight words we have to learn each week. In order to transition, students are not to move or “make the transition” until they hear me say the “Word of the Day” which is most often one of our sight words. Our word of the day is displayed in the front of the classroom and we discuss what it is during carpet/calendar time in the morning.

Thank you to Kristen Smith for the help with the pictures :)

We talk about the sight word/word of the day and use it in sentences, spell it etc in order to understand everything there is to know about the word. Then when it is time to make any sort of transition in the classroom students do not make that transition until they hear me say the word of the day. Students learn to stay seated and listen to all directions by practicing this technique each day. It soon becomes routine and let me tell you, if you happen to forget to say the word of the day in a transition time the kids WILL let you know.

Sometimes I will mix things up and use a different words as our word of the day. During holidays I will oftentimes use fun words like turkey or stocking as our word of the day, always making sure we talk about the word during morning meeting. Other times I will use content vocabulary. For instance, when we are studying apples at the beginning of the year, I will use terms like apples and fall and we will then discuss how these terms are related to our study on apples.

There are so many possibilities with this idea. The main idea is to help make transitions more effective with an added bonus of practicing and reinforcing key vocabulary and sight words in the classroom.

Using this technique in the classroom helps keep me sane as a teacher. It has DRASTICALLY cut down on the amount of questions you get about what students should be doing once they go back to their seats after being on the carpet or after they get out their pencils etc.

You should be able to drastically cut down on this very scenario happening.
Students are listening to you and your directions the ENTIRE time and not focusing on doing what they are to do after you say the word of the day.


I hope some of you can find this helpful. I know it has been one of the best things I have implemented in my classroom.

Next up on the blog hop is Fern, from Fern Smith’s Classroom Ideas. Fern has a great post for
you all about professional teacher behavior! Just click on the button below to check it out!

Fern Smith's Classroom Ideas

Alternatively, you can search by topic using the link-up below and move along to any other blog on the blog hop!



Monday, February 10, 2014

President’s Day Resources

I have said it a couple times before, but man is this month FULL of things to be teaching our little ones. I know many have had ALOT of snow days which makes it even harder to get everything in that they need to.

Next week is President’s Day and I am sure many of you are working on teaching your little ones all about what President’s Day is. I felt it fitting to share some of my favorite President’s Day resources so you can have some ideas for this week.

First, I will direct you to my Pinterest board HERE. There are many different units/crafts etc ideas you can use. I will highlight a few of my favorites below. You can click on each of the pictures to take you directly to the pin URL.

Pretzel Log Cabin Craft - Log Cabin Crafts for Kids - Presidents' Day Kids' Crafts - Kaboose.com

This log cabin made out of pretzels would be such a neat project to accomplish when discussing Abraham Lincoln and the kids would have a blast with it (what kid doesn’t like making things using food). president's day cookies

How stinking adorable and easy are these cute little cookies from Party Pinching.

Presidents Day {Stewart Style...}

This application is such an awesome addition to your President’s Day activities. Stephanie’s activities are amazing. You will definitely want to check it out.

A Cupcake for the Teacher: President's Day Craftivities... Big Update!

I LOVE all of Teri’s crafts and this Lincoln is no different :)

And having kids compare themselves to a life-sized Lincoln is such a fun and interactive activity that will help students understand just how tall Lincoln was. (This one didn’t have a URL linked to it so it is unclickable.)

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Other resources I like to use come from my updated George & Abe President’s Day Pack. This pack is structured like all my other themed units and also includes a bonus patriotic heart craft.

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Various Writing Prompts and Graphic Organizers for various President’s Day related ideas. Materials are also included in order to make class anchor charts and graphic organizers.

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Labeling activities for both Washington and Lincoln with a colored poster also included.

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Class graphing activity to see who the students’ favorite president is. This also comes with class chart parts.

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Venn Diagram and All About pages for Washington and Lincoln.

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And a classroom little reader all about President’s Day and Washington and Lincoln.

The pack also consists of directions and materials to make this Patriotic Heart craft (this craft takes some time and needs alot of attention to detail so make sure your students are able to follow directions well.)

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You can find the materials in this pack by clicking on any of the pictures above.

My last resources I want to share for President’s Day are some President’s Day books. I adore books and love using them during themed teaching times :)

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I hope you were able to find some ideas that you can use to help teach your student’s about President’s Day. Have a good week friends and stay warm wherever you may be reading from. :)

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Promoting Kindness at Valentine’s Day

During this week of love, I often find myself thinking about how my students have been acting. We are definitely getting stir crazy around here with all of the snow, which tends to bring out the not so pleasant in my little sweeties. I am sure many, if not all of you, can agree at one time or another. I heard that this Valentine’s Day, which falls on a Friday, is also a full moon. It never fails, the students seem to be rather off their game during full moons. So you pair it with Valentine’s Day and Friday and we all could be in for some “great” times this week.

When I was creating my craft for this Valentine’s Day I started thinking about what I wanted students to get out of it. Valentine’s Day is the holiday of love. We should always show love and kindness to one another, not just on Valentine’s Day, but what a great week/day to actually make it known in the classroom. This got my wheels turning and that is when my Valentine’s craft/idea was born.

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This pack can serve many purposes in the classroom. Not only is it a cute little Kangaroo craft, but you can also use it to help promote kindness in the classroom. Students can work to compile the craft and then throughout the week you can have them write random kindness notes to each other and fill their kangaroo pouches with notes. Then at the end of the week, during your Valentine’s parties you can have students read the notes from their classmates. 

In addition to having students write notes of kindness, you can hold discussions about being bucket fillers instead of bucket dippers. Create class anchor charts to show ways you can be both and stress the importance of being a bucket filler. Even if you have already done this during the year, it never hurts to go back and remake the charts. You may never know what your students will come up with now that they have been with their classmates and you as a teacher.

This is also a great time to have a class discussion about bullying. I know a lot of schools have an anti-bullying type of program in place and require teachers to hold weekly/monthly meetings in their classroom to discuss what bullying looks like and what you should do if you are faced with bullying.

You can find my Bucket Filler Pinterest board HERE. It doesn’t have much on it, but I plan to add to it as I find things. 

You can check out this little craft (which can be customized for a boy (bowtie) or girl (hair bow)) by clicking on any of the pictures below or by clicking HERE. It includes all the pieces to create the craft, directions for use in the classroom, a Valentine’s Word Search, and an Acts of Kindness brainstorm worksheet. If you use it, I would love to hear how you used it in your classroom.

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Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Dental Health Resources

February is a jam packed month. Groundhog’s Day, Dental Health Month, Valentine’s Day, and President’s Day and possible even something I am missing. All of this in the shortest month of the year. I am going to be sharing some of my favorite resources for Dental Health Month so that you can hopefully be prepared for this busy, short month.

This blog post from Susan, at Thank God It’s First Grade, from last year has to be one of my favorite new ideas for Dental Health Month. Her school had a program where students were able to dress up as teeth and then the presenter shows students the correct way to brush teeth, using the students as examples. I think it is brilliant and would love to have an area dentist come and do something similar for the whole school. I know I for sure will be reenacting it with my students.

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If you have a dramatic play center in your classroom, or even if you don’t, these cute ideas are something you can use to help teach your students about proper teeth cleaning behaviors.

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Use the bottoms of pop bottles and cover them in paint or something else you can use to cover it and then have students practice brushing the teeth.

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Having a model of teeth with “food particles” in between them and giving students dental floss is a great way to teach students to get down in between their teeth.

This adorable idea is a must do in the classroom. Take pictures of your students mouths and then have students guess who’s mouth/teeth belong to who. You would be amazed at how well students can do with this activity. Click on the picture to take you to Angie’s blog post explaining more about it.

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And Dental Health month cannot be complete without a craft and some learning materials.

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This cutie can be customized to look like a girl or a boy and is available in my Dental Health Unit which got a facelift for this new year. 

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This pack is over 70 pages of crafts and learning materials to help make your Dental Health unit more enjoyable. Materials include:

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A dental health reader and writing prompts

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How To Brush Your Teeth Writing, and Can, Have, Are and KWL activities. Class chart parts are also included to make class sized charts.

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Dental Health Related facts and dental health circle maps.

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Class graphs including chart parts for a class graph

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Healthy and Unhealthy teeth activities as well as Venn Diagrams

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Teeth Brushing Charts and Lost Tooth Certificates

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Chart Parts and Dental Health Vocabulary Cards

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Dental Health related posters and a Lost Tooth Chart to document the teeth lost in your classroom.

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Tooth Parts Chart as well as a craft for students to create their own Parts of a tooth which then can then label.

You cannot complete Dental Health month without some reading and these are some of my student’s favorite Dental Health books. You can check each of these books out by clicking on the pictures below.

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I love Pinterest and can’t wait to find some more dental health resources. If you want to keep up with the other resources I find, you can come over and follow my Dental Health Board by clicking HERE!!!