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.  

Feb 8, 2015

Slim Down Saturday!

I am linking up for my weekly accountability post with Gina from Teaching With a Touch of Pixie Dust.

Here are my stats for the week.

It has been a tough week for me.  I know the above results speak otherwise.  I am thrilled to have lost another 2 lbs this week.  Finally I feel like I am back on track with my my weight loss.  But. It. Was. Hard. This. Week. 
My college son came home Monday for just one night, since he had an appointment with the orthodontist.  So he wanted to eat at his favorite restaurant.  It is a local Mexican place in our town.  I was sooo good all day knowing I would be going out that evening.  I already had it planned in my mind I would order the grilled chicken salad, no cheese and no dressing.  I would just put some fresh salsa on top.  However, I didn’t figure on how hard it would be to resist those chips they bring before the dinner.  Not to mention that it would take longer than usual to get our dinner, I guess since we had a group of 12. Well I only ate ½ my salad, probably in part because I think I ate my weight in chips while we were waiting.  Oh My! Well, live and learn.  Maybe it was a good thing to have a little cheat.  I guess my body said, “Oh, I guess we are not starving”.
The rest of the week I was really proud of myself for staying on track with my food. I will say it is getting easier.  This may sound odd, but the healthy food is actually tasting even better, if that is possible.

My exercise, however, is another story.  Once again I had an epic fail in this department.  I did not walk, I did not join a class, nada, nothing.  By Wednesday, I was not feeling too well and it has only gotten worse.  I keep telling myself it is just a bad allergy episode.  However, that little voice in the back of my head is getting louder with “It is a cold”.  I don’t want to believe it.  But I look awful, feel awful and just the mere thought of any exercise puts me into a cold sweat.
So my goals for this coming week are the same as the last.  Exercise 3-4 days of the week and join 1-2 classes for support.

Finally, here is my inspirational quote for the week

I thought this was perfect for this past week and going forward!

How was your week?  Be sure to head back to Gina’s and see how everyone else did this week.  Decide to be the best you can be this week friends!   

Feb 4, 2015

Wordless Wednesday

I am linking up with MissDeCarbo for her Wordless Wednesday

I know I am kind of breaking the rules.  This is technically more than one picture.  But since it is one collage I thought I could sneak it inlol

This week we our close read is the non-fiction book Penguins.  We talk about vocabulary, two essential questions and finding evidence in our text to support our answers. If you teach Kindergarten and would like to give this one a try it is a free resource from Tara West over at Little Minds at Work and you can get it here.  Do you do close reading in your class?  If so what do you like or dislike about it?

Thanks for stopping by and be sure to check out the linky to see all the other Wordless Wednesday  pics.  Enjoy the rest of your week friends!

Feb 1, 2015

February Currently

Happy Sunday!  Today I am joining one of my favorite linky’s, Farley’s Currently for February.  

Are you thinking what I am thinkingFebruary already?  I think the older I get the fast time goes. Yes it is time to admit that I AM getting older, not that I have to like it, but it is a fact.

Listeninghubby is watching Race Hub on DVR from Friday.  With a house full of boys there is almost always some kind of sporting event on the TV.

LovingThe start of race season.  Although this year, we didn’t really take much of a break.  We usually end our season the end of October and don’t start until late February. However, this year we joined a new winter series and have been racing twice a month since late December at a new track. 

We will start traveling soon with the new season, and even though it is exhausting it is also lots of fun! I know most people are likeracing? boring.  You’re just watching cars go around in a circle.  But anyone who has been involved in the sport knows it is so much more than that.  It is father/son bonding out in the garage getting ready for the race.  It is hanging out all weekend at the track with friends, who have become your race family.  Cheering each other on and the thrill of winning, well it just never gets old.  It is quality time with my boys that I would never give up. Despite the fact that it can be nerve wracking at times.

ThinkingNo. More. Fog.  Like at all please!  This year has been like no other for fog in our area.  We have had more 2 or 3 hour delays and canceled buses this year than in all the last 5 years combined.  It just throws all my lesson plans out the window.  You lose instruction time and worse yet, with canceled buses I only end up having half my class.  The worst part, these aren’t like snow days where you make them up later.  It still counts as a school day. Ok I will stop complaining now.

Wantingwho doesn’t want an extra day between Saturday and Sunday??  I know I sure do.  Saturday I am trying to recoup from the week and get some chores done around the house, then Sunday it’s working in my room or from my couch and squeezing in some family time too.  Not to mention if is a race weekend I REALLY need an extra day.

NeedingOk so this is totally selfish.  In all honesty there is really NOTHING that I NEED.  But, I really, really, really want a Vitamix.  Like really.  I actually have been wanting one for a while, but I just can’t seem to justify the expense.  Since the first of the year I have stuck to my commitment of getting back to eating healthy and having a Vitamix would make it even easier.  I would so love to enjoy my “green” protein shakes without bits of spinach that didn’t get blended up well. I am thinking I am going to bite the bullet and get it.  Hey, if I get it Target I can save another 5% with my red card rightdone.

Pagent TitleQueen of the Jungle.  This has multiple meanings.  No I am not WILD, far from it.  But my room is a jungle theme and everyone on campus refers to it as the Jungle room, and my principal always says you are the Queen of your room and make the rules.  I will also admit, sometimes it feels like it is a jungle with all those little bodies moving around the room.  I also feel like it is often a jungle in my home.  All boys, who often don’t clean up after themselves.  I know I am partly to blame, since it is easier to just do it myself than to nag. Not to mention the noise.  I DO NOT have those quiet, calm kind of boys.  Mine are loud, in your face, wrestling in the middle of my family room kind.  But I love them to pieces.

Be sure to head back and check out Farely’s linky and see what everyone else is “currently” up to. I love to read your comments and thoughts.  Have a blessed week my friends!