Monday, December 30, 2013

Patterning With Beads and Straws

Before we left for the holidays, I let the kids make their own pattern necklaces. It was a great way to review AB, AAB, ABB, and ABC patterns using beads and cut colored straws.

I don't know why it took me so long to realize that dental floss is the perfect thing for stringing beads! It easily threads through the smallest holes, and it's strong enough to hold the weight!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Uh-oh! Spaghetti-os!

Are these adorable or what? The kids will have a blast making words out of these spaghetti fridge magnets. I'm going to look into buying some cheap little metal "bowls" at the dollar store for them to use as backing.
Found them here on Amazon.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Monday, December 23, 2013

Whoo-Hoo! It's Official!

After 35 years of teaching, I'll be retiring as of June, 2014!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Christmas Activity - Santa and "Santa Pie"

Take a cheap paper plate and cut into quarters. Color the natural curve that was the center of the plate, add cotton balls at the top, and along the bottom edge for the beard and hat topper. A pair of googly eyes and a small red pompom for the nose, and you have Santa!

When my students put their Santas on the table to dry, they placed them back into circles and called them Santa Pie, LOL!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Letters to Santa

Today we wrote our letters to Santa. I also gave them envelopes to "address". Then I instructed the students to take their letters home and give them to their parents because the letters need to be stamped and mailed. (My mother still has the letter I wrote in first grade!)

Monday, December 16, 2013

Free! 36 Hilarious Teacher Jokes

Click here to get a free PDF ebook of 36 Teacher Jokes. Just click the view to download your copy!

Friday, December 13, 2013

Alphabetical Memory Game

Here's a quick and easy memory game that reinforces alphabetical order. And all you need is 1 pack of alphabet cards you can get at any dollar store (be sure they have "blank" backs that don't give away what's on the other side. I've found some alphabet cards that have a picture on one side and the letter on the other, or upper case on one side, lower case on the other, etc.)

Short, sweet, and simple, first person turns over a card, looking for the letter A. When it's finally found, look for the letter B, and so forth until the cards have been placed in order. To make it more fun, if a child finds the next card in order, they get to keep the card and take a second turn. Person who finds the most cards wins!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Using Pinterest Pictures in the Classroom - Dice

* What is the first thing you notice about these dice?
* Why do you think they were made like this?
* Do you think each die looks the same? Or do you think they're all different? Why?
(Note how 3 is depicted on the first die on the left, and the last die on the right.)
* If you turned the dice upside down, what would happen to the dots?
* Do you like the way the dots are pictured on these dice? Why or why not?
* Compare these to a regular die. What do you notice is the biggest difference?
(Note that one side is totally blank on these dice, as compared to regular dice.)
* Taking in the fact that one side of these dice is completely blank, and all dice have 6 sides, what do you think would be the highest number of dots on one side? (They may say 5, then point out the die on the far right has 6 dots on a side.)
* Why would dice have a blank side?

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

My Math Stations for the Weeks of 12/2 and 12/9

Continuing with our Christmasy stations...

Station #1 - Calendar Math
The kids use Vis-a-Vis markers on laminated templates. They copy the numbers of the December calendar onto the templates. Easy to clean and wipe off when they're done.

Station #2 - Turkey in a Cup game
You can get the full details here.

Station #3 - Reindeer Dash
I got the idea from here. But rather than play it the way it was originally intended, I have the students roll the dice. In order to advance, they have to roll the Exact Next Number in the "chain". First to reach the sleigh wins!

Station #4 - Christmas Ten Frame Memory
You can get this freebie here.

Station #5 - Decorate the Tree
I made Christmas trees and laminated them onto mats, one for each student. Students roll a die. They cover the corresponding number with a marker (I use flat-bottom colored rocks.) First one to cover their tree wins!

You can click on the 8.5 x 11 pattern below, then save to print out your own!

Monday, December 2, 2013

My Language Arts Stations for the Weeks of 12/2 and 12/9

With three weeks left before the Christmas holidays, I went with Christmas-themed stations.

Station #1 - Guided Reading with me.

Station #2 - Split between Computers and Listening Center
These next two weeks the children will be playing with FunBrainJr .com. The story they'll be listening to is Bear Stays Up For Christmas. (Link here.)

Station #3 - Highlight-a-Letter
These next two weeks, we're highlighting G and H.

Station #4 - Santa's Rhyme Time
This freebie game can be found here. I adapted the game this way. Each student gets a mat. They also get a set of the rhyming cards. They place ALL of the cards upside-down in the middle of the table. They take turns drawing a card, sounding it out, and placing it on their mats. First person to fill up one column up and down wins. Or you can change it to where the winner has to fill up one row across. Or "blackout", with all blanks covered.

Station #5 - Holiday ABC Order
I got this freebie here. The students have to put the cards in ABC order.