Friday, March 6, 2015

Five For Friday

This is what March 1st looked like in Southern Illinois! We had a SUPER FUN snow day!!! Check out our igloo!! But, I'm sooooo over the ice and snow!! Come on, Spring!!! It's supposed to be in the 50s tomorrow! Whooohooooo!!!!!
Gray and I both had Wacky Wednesday at our schools!!! I got to wear my "Oh, the Places You'll Go" shirt AND my Lorax Chuck Taylors!!! Dress up days are my FAVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 The kids and I so love doing all of my lift the flap centers!! This one is a subtraction one using eggs! They count the eggs on the outside and lift the flap to see how many eggs have broken on the inside. Then, they write the number sentence. So fun! You can find this center in my Super Silly Centers Pack!

 P.S.  Check out these perfectly cute eggs that my friend Erin from Erin's Ink made for me!!! You can grab them for FREEEEEEE here!!! She has some other super cute freebies to snag too!!!

 We got to try out our Super Silly Cat Pattern block Puzzle this week!! It comes in 3 different levels of difficulty and has 4 response sheet options! You can find it in my March Pattern Block Puzzle Pack!!!

And, check our classroom doors that my Kinder Partner and I decorated together!!!! See that little paper hanging at the top? We won "Best in Show" for our school! That equals a popcorn party and FREEE books!!!! Ha!!! So fun!!
Have a great weekend!!!!!

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Do You GoNoodle?? Freebies for You!!

Hey Guys!!! I have a question for you.....

My class can't get enough of GoNoodle!!! And, neither can I for sooooo many reasons!!

Are your kids getting squirmy??? Time for a BRAIN BREAK!!!

Have something you need to look for or set up for your students and it might take you like 2 minutes (which is an eternity for a 5-year-old) Show them one to keep them busy and active during that time!

Have a birthday in your class?? Show one to celebrate!!!

Use it as a reward, an incentive, to charge them up OR to calm them down! You can even use it for indoor recess!!!

Whatever you use it for, your kids are going to LOVE it and so are you!!!

If you haven't signed up yet, you have to RIGHT. NOW!!!! It's sooo easy! You can sign up for FREE here!

Here's how it works!!

You will have a "channels" page that looks like this to choose the kind of Brain Break you want to do.

Our favorite lately has been this song  from the KooKoo Kanga Roo Channel. check out the video below to see my kiddos dancing! :) Sooooo fun!

When you click on the channel that you want, all of the Brain breaks that you can choose from will come up! This is the YouTube Channel!!!  I LOVE this one because the first window is a place where you can add ANY video that you want from Youtube and it saves it for you!!! So, you NEVER have to search for it EVER again!!! 

Go to Youtube and search for Just Dance Kids videos and save them all!!! They are PERFECT!!!! Here's just an example of one!! We play this one every time we have a birthday in our class!!!

Another GENIUS thing that GoNoodle has thought of is Indoor Recess!!!!! They have put together GoNoodle mixes that last up to 15-18 minutes long!!! 18 minutes of uninterrupted brain breaks!!! Just play it and let them dance, exercise and yoga recess away!!! ;)

Another feature that GoNoodle has is their Champs!!! "What in the world are those things for????," You might ask. Well, it's actually pretty ingenious!!!

Just pick your favorite Champ and the kids will LOVE this little creature!!!! It will become kind of like your Class Mascot for the next couple of weeks!!!

Now, each time your class watches a brain break, your Champ earns a point! This makes for an EXCELLENT transition time!!! Because, my kids know that I will NOT close the video and show them how many points our champ has unless they are back at their seats sitting quietly!!!! (I told you! Ingenious!!!!)

Now, every time your Champ gets up to 10 points, it earns a level and it GROWS!!!!

This makes for GREAT learning!!! What is one of our Kindergarten Common Core Standards??? Ways to make 10!!!! After we see how many points our Champ has, we figure out how many more we need to get to TEN!!!

So, I made this little GoNoodle Ten Frame for the class!! I ModPodged the ten frame to a cookie sheet and then I put packing tape over the bottom portion of it so that it is like a "dry erase" board now :) Then, I just laminated the coins and used a little E6000 to attach big button magnets to the backs so that my kiddos could easily manipulate them! Here's how it turned out!!! (Gotta LOVE those little magnetic erasers from the Target Dollar Spot!!! :)

You can click on the little picture below to grab your very own FREE GoNoodle 10 frame and coins if you want!! :)

So, once your Champ finished his 4th and final level, then he is finished and you have to pick a new class Champ!

Well, I definitely want to involve my class in the selection of our next champ, so last time I just picked a couple and we all raised our hands for a class vote....but, that wasn't good enough!! Ha!

So, I made these little survey sheets. Each sheet has 5 Champs on it. Now, I can give my class a sheet and we can survey the class and keep tallies to show our data. Then, we will graph our data to see who our winning champ is!

You can also click on the picture below to get your FREE survey sheets too! :)

Please let me know in the comments if these GoNoodle printables were helpful to you AND if you already GoNoodle or if you plan to start with your class on MONDAY!!! :)

Did I mention, it's all FREE?!?!?

Happy GoNoodling!!!!! xoxoxo

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

4 Valentines, and a Vision in a Rainstrom

So, you know when you have a vision?!?! You see something that inspires you and you have this idea...this picture in your brain and you go for it!!! But, you're never quite sure if your vision is going to work. Will it really turn out like that picture in your head??? Or...will it be a complete flop?! The term that comes to mind for those "tries"..."Nailed it!" Ha!!

Well, this time, it REALLY WAS a success!!!! This time, it really DID turn out like the picture in my head!!!

You guys, I am just OBSESSED with our new bulletin board!!!!!

So, it all started with this book. It is my absolute FAVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I've been reading it to my class since I found this little treasure at a Yard Sale 10 years ago!! Did you know the story was published under TWO different titles?? My copy is actually Four Valentines in a Rainstorm. I think most people know it as The Day it Rained Hearts...but, the stories are the same. Just an FYI :) Don't be confused!!
Anyway, this story is absolutely PRESH!! I just LOVE it!! But, I never really had a super excitingly cute activity to go along with it. At least, not as cute as I thought it should be.....
.....and then, the week before Valentine's  Day, I just happen to see this on Amazon!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Could it be ANY more perfect!!! So, I ordered it immediately, clicked two day shipping and crossed my fingers!

It came!!!!!!!!!! And, it was perfect!!!

I brought a couple of pairs of my boys' rain boots to school and called a "Girl MOM" to see if I could borrow some girly ones too :)

So, I got out the camera....oh, wait!!! I forgot the camera, as usual!!!!!!!!! And, used my phone to take pictures!!! Uggggggh!!! It was just a few days before Valentine's Day!!! No time for trying to remember a camera!!! So, I went for it!!

I pinned up a little white bulletin board paper back drop and we struck some rainy day poses!!!

Seriously, are you dying over how cute these are?!?!

Next, it was time for an art project!!! We made our little clouds....

Now, after 11 years of teaching Kindergarten and using cotton for a million different projects over the years, I have learned there is a trick to stretching out the cotton!

Poke your finger up through the middle until the "end" of the cotton pokes out. take that "end" piece and start unrolling it!!! Yes, it VERY easily unrolls once you have found the right place to start!!!! Now you have a loooong piece of cotton!!!  Here's a close up of one of my students doing it :)

Then, we put it all together!!! We had some extra clouds that we decided to hang around the hallway and OH. MY. GOODNESS!!!!! It could NOT have turned out ANY cuter!!!!!

 I mean, seriously!!! It doesn't get any cuter than this!! But, now I'm going to be on the look out for red and pink rain slickers, hats and boots!!!!!!!!! So, maybe next year, it will be even cuter than this!!

Monday, February 16, 2015

Book Study: Worksheets Don't Grow Dendrites, Starting February 28th

Get Ready to do some on-line professional learning with some of your favorite bloggers! After so many of my friends have gotten to visit the Ron Clark Academy, so many of us are so inspired to find ways to reach our learners in fun and exciting ways! I wasn't one of the lucky ones that got to visit...but, it's on my bucket list!!! Just hearing them talk about it is enough to inspire anyone!!!

Starting February 28th, we are going to be hosting a linky party each Tuesday and Saturday with chapters from this book: 
Linky parties will take place on these different blogs each time. Here is the order so you can plan accordingly :)
Kickin it in Kindergarten- Chapters 1 &2 (February 28th)
Mrs. Wills Kindergarten- Chapter 3 (March 7th)
Queen of the First Grade Jungle Chapter 4 (March 10th)
Fabulous in First  Chapter 5 (March 14th)
One Extra Degree Chapter 6 (March 17th)
Mrs. Jump’s Class Chapter 7 (March 28th)
The First Grade Parade  Chapter 8 (March 31st)
In April, you will be visiting these girls for the remainder of the study:
Mrs. Ehle’s Kindergarten Chapter 9 &10 (April 4th)
What The Teacher Wants Chapter 11 (April 7th)
First Grader At Last Chapter 12 (April 11th)
Erica’s Ed Ventures  Chapter 13 (April 14th)
KinderGals Chapter 14 &15 (April 18th)
A Rocky Top Teacher Chapter 16 (April 21st)
Mrs. Wills Kindergarten Chapter 17 (April 25th)
Little Warriors Chapter 18 (April 28th)
Kickin’ it in Kindergarten Chapter 19&20 (May 2nd)

You can join in for whatever part you like! If you are not a blogger, that is OK! We will want you to join in on the fun. You can participate in the conversation in the comments. We want this to be a positive collaboration between teachers! The whole point is to encourage each other with inspiring ideas while still using research based best practice.

We hope you will join! Here is a YouTube video where you can hear a little more about what the book is about.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Love is in the *iPad* Air Giveaway!

Hey Teacher Friends!!!!
Valentine's Day is just around the corner!!! And to show our LOVE and appreciation for YOU, we are giving away an iPad Air to one SUPER Lucky teacher!!!

Entering this Giveaway is SUPER easy!!! Just click on the rafflecopter below for your chances to win this AMAZING prize!!!!!!!!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

But, THAT'S. NOT. ALL......

Each one of my Blog Buddies that is participating in this giveaway is also giving away another techy prize to show our love for you!!!

Here's a little prize (actually TWO of them) that I put together for you!!!! I'm giving away a $25 iTunes Gift Card, PLUS my FAVORITE Learn to Read App. Called Rhyme to Read!!! You can read more about that app HERE in a previous post.

To enter to win those two awesome prizes, just enter this Rafflecopter!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Now, don't forget to check out ALL of the other AWESOME technology prizes that my friends are giving away!!!!! Hop on over to their posts too and enter to win all kinds of prizes!!!!

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Shadow Detectives and A Sale!!!

 Need a quickly prepped, super FUN, hands on and meaningful activity for Monday??  This is a lesson that your students will LOVE and one that they will never forget!! That's the BEST kind of learning!!!

Ok, so first thing you're going to need is a few flashlights!!! I have one in my classroom and raided the custodian's storage room to find three more!!!!!!!!! :)

Now your students need to cut out their little detective hats and groundhog puppets to prepare for the experiment!! You can also give them a "shadow detective" badge to wear. I made those after we did the activity....I thought it needed a big more cuteness :)

Now it's time to ask the essential question!!! What kind of day do you think you need for Groundhog to see his shadow??? Have the kids make their predictions!

Once they have recorded what they think, turn all the lights OFF!! Block any light coming through windows or doors and turn off your projector and computer!! :)

Let the kids take their groundhogs around the dark room to see if they can find a shadow for him.  Give them some "exploring" time. Then, call them back to their spots to regroup and discuss their findings. (you can turn the lights on for this :) 
The students determine that you can not find a shadow for him in the dark. Have them record their answers.

Now, turn the lights back off. This time the students take their groundhogs and flashlights around the room. Can you find a shadow for groundhog now that you have flashlights?? YES!!!!!!!!!!

Encourage further exploration. What happens when you move the flashlight away from groundhog?? What happens when you move the light closer to him??

Have another student be a "cloud" that is drifting along. Have the cloud move between the light and the groundhog. What happens??

OH MY GOODNESS!!!!!!!! I cannot even tell you how much fun my kids had with this activity!!!! I think part of the fun was that THE LIGHTS WERE OFF AT SCHOOL!!!!! Ha! :) But, they were also so AMAZED at all the different things that the light did to the shadow. You can make a shadow grow???????? Shut the front door!!!!! Just amazing!!!! :) 

Here are some of the response sheets that my kiddos did. I love reading all of their different discoveries!!!!

1. "When you put in a cloud, it blocks the light."

2. "When the sun comes out, it makes a shadow."

3.  "If it (the light) moves back, it (the shadow) will get bigger."

4.  "Light makes a shadow."

After we completed our experiment we read a really FUN book called Bear's Shadow. It explains even further what happens to a shadow as the sun moves across the sky and the day goes on. It also talks about what happens when the light source is blocked.

One of my kinders took this pic of me introducing the book!!! Ha!!

You will also definitely want to check out this awesomely perfect interactive online activity from BBC!!!!!!! It is also another PERFECT follow-up activity to help students further understand lights and shadows and how they're made!!!!

 Check out Shadow Detectives by clicking on the picture below!!!!

The best part can get this pack and EVERYTHING else in my store at a bargain price until Monday!!!!

I (along with many of my girls at Blog Hoppin') are having a SALE this weekend!!!!

Click on the image below to visit my TPT store!!