Feb 15, 2015

Five for Funday~Valentine's and some Freebies!

Why is it the short weeks sometimes feel like the longest?  We only had school 4 days this past week, but boy was I wore out by Friday. Sooo, I am linking up totally late, with Kaceyat Doodle Bugs Teaching for her Five for Friday on Funday.

This week was a full one.  I will be the first to admit, I totally dropped the ball on incorporating fun art projects into Valentine’s Day this year.  With all of our weather delay’s lately I have been playing catch up on our core subjects and it just kind of snuck up on me.  I pretty much just ran out of time.  However, I think if you ask the kiddos they still had a great time this week.  Enough about thaton to our week!

We have finished up our “L blends” and have started full force into learning our “R blends”.  The kiddos just love making our anchor charts together and it helps to really build their phonics, phonemic awareness and vocabulary skills all while having fun. 

We also started working on nouns this week.   We talked all about what nouns were and brainstormed words for each different type. Then we watched a video.  I love incorporating music whenever possible, I think it really helps the students to retain the information better.  I went old school and we watched School House Rocks, “You know they’re Nouns”.

I loved the School House Rock Videos when I was a kid, yes I am old.  It was waaay back before Disney Channel and Nickelodeon, GASP!  The only cartoons were for four hours on Saturday mornings and they always showed the School House Rock videos in between the shows.  Well they have stood the test of time, because my kiddos love all their videos.

After the video I passed out post it notes and each student had to write a word and draw a picture for “a person”, “a place” and “a thing”.  Then we added them to our interactive anchor chart.     
It came out great and best of all the kiddos really “get it”!

In math this week we practiced our place value.  We have talked about it before and use it in our calendar time. But I still had a few kiddos who just weren’t quite comfortable with it.  

So I broke out the pool noodles.  I made these this summer after seeing a great post from Mr. Greg at The Kindergarten Smorgasbord.  If you want to see my  tutorial on making your own click here.  

Any who, we all sat in a circle and away we went.  We practiced building numbers from 1-100 using our noodles.  After I was sure they could handle it each student came up and made a number all on their own.  The best part was I could choose an easier number for those kiddos who were not as advanced and I could choose more difficult ones for those students who could handle it.  They loved it and by using this hands on technique I think they all really understand it now.  We will be using  them in an independent center during math stations a few more times to reinforce this concept.

We had some fun for science this week with a Candy Heart Experiment.  I saw this on Pinterest, click here for the original pin.  I will admit however, I was expecting more.  The kiddos thought it was fun, but I had higher expectations.  I usually try these things out at home first, but I was short on time and just took the supplies in and went with it.  

You need 4 cups, one each with water, salt water, vinegar and bleach and candy hearts.  Pretty simple.  I got large candy hearts thinking we would get a bigger reaction, but it didn’t turn out that way.  Maybe they were too big and it would have been better with the small ones.  I am going to test it out next time first.   I made up this observation sheet you can download for FREE here if you want to give it a try next year.  A big shout out to Creative Clips and Kimberly Geswein for the clipart and fonts.

The first thing we did was talk about what we thought would happen when we put the hearts into the cup.  We would record our prediction on our recording sheet then put them in and watchedwaiting for something to happennothing really happened immediately with any of the solutions. Unless you count a small amount of bubbles floating up when we put them into the vinegar and bleach. So I made the executive decision that we would make our final observations after PE.

When the kiddos came back then we had something to record.  In the water they had started to disintegrate and the water was colored. Same with the salt water, plus two of them were floating.  In the vinegar they were about the same, maybe slightly more vivid color in the cup. The kiddos thought the bleach was the best reaction.  One heart was totally gone and the other two were teeny tiny.  Overall it was a fun time!

We had a great Valentine Day Celebration this week.  Here are a few of my favorite Valentine Read-a-louds.

Thursday I had passed out bags and hearts and we decorated them to put all of our valentines in.  That is what you do when you are searching through your cupboards for something to use at the last minutelol.  I live 30 minutes from town and work another 15 minutes out in the country so running to the store for supplies was out of the question.  The bags were all unique and anytime they get to have free use of glue and markers is good to go!

For our party on Friday afternoon we had stations.  I find this is the best way to conduct a party, for me at least.  They have a great time and it usually stays fairly calm.  We had four stations that they rotated to.  The first was decorating cupcakes.  We had frosting, sprinkles and several different kinds of candy to top it off.  Then they got to eat their creation and wash it down with a juice pouch.

Our second station was making homemade valentine cards for our loved ones.  I put out different papers, scissors, markers, colored pencils and glue.  They had a ball and made some great creations.
Talk about easy prep.

Station number 3 was Pin It!  They love this type of activity and it really helps to build those fine motor skills.  This cute pattern is a great FREEBIE you can find here from  Sara Connell at FirstGrade Funtastic.

This group was the cutest.  They all got their patterns and made a little circle to work on them.  It made me smile!

Station number 4 was a Graphing activity.  I put together a little baggie of treats for each student.  They had to sort, count and graph their goodies on their recording sheet.  Once it was complete they could eat their goodies.  If you want a copy of this recording sheet FREEBIE click here.  Thanks to Creative Clips and Kimberly Geswein for the great clipart and fonts.

Be sure to check out DoodleBugs Teaching to see all the other great posts.   Hope you all enjoyed your Valentine’s Day and have a wonderful week ahead.  


  1. I love your place value pool noodles. Although I teach third grade, I can see this helping my strugglers and special students at the beginning of next year. Thanks for sharing=)

     TGIF-Third Grade Is Fun

    1. So glad you found something you can use with your kiddos. Thanks fro taking the time to comment.


  2. I love, love your blends charts! I also love the pool noodles! Do you keep them in the bin and have them out/available all the time after they are introduced? Or do you store them in a closet? I was just thinking about storage options - because I would love to have those! 4 day weeks can definitely feel long! I always feel more tired on those than the regular weeks! I think it is just feeling off schedule and the kids feel it too! Happy Monday, hope you have a great week!

    1. I am leaving the pool noodles out as one of our math centers now that I know the kiddos "get it". I have a set of cards with numbers in the box. They choose a number and then build it. They will take turns with their partner. Up until now they have been in the bin shown on top of one of my cupboards. I don't have a ton of storage so I end up putting lots of my bins on top of the few cupboards I do have. Thanks for your kind words. Enjoy the rest of your week!


  3. Love that interactive noun chart! I really like how everyone got involved in the making of it and think it's a great way for students to practice identifying nouns. Thanks for sharing what you did!

    Lattes and Lunchrooms