Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Wonderful Weather

I'll start with the best news.  It's a SALE!  All items in my Teachers Pay Teachers store are 20% off 4/26-4/28.  I LOVE sales!!!  Check out all of the great products by clicking here!

I have to admit, I LOVE teaching weather.  The only problem is that I live in Arizona.  There aren't many clouds, and it's not very exciting to complete a weather journal on five days of sunshine.  Now, I know I should be thankful for the abundance of natural vitamin D, but it's already been over 90 for a few days now.  I'm not ready for 90 degrees.

When I taught 4th, we watched a super cool water cycle song on YouTube.  Well, it turns out that five and six years old LOVE it, too!  I think they really just like Uncle Dan hiding in the garbage can, but if they absorb one piece of information, it's worth the time spent.  Plus, it's my favorite educational song.

Anyway, I am VERY excited for this new unit.  It's a chance for my students to read and learn about weather that happens elsewhere.  We don't get much rain, and when it does rain, the kids think they are going to melt.  You may think I'm joking, but I am dead serious.

There are picture vocabulary cards for each type of weather, and a matching game.

There are circle maps for each type of weather, and a "What I Learned" activity.

The kids will make their own forecast and then follow up by recording the actual weather.
One of the activities I'm most excited to share is the "Dress Your Tater" activity.  The kids will dress their tater friends for various weather.

I made two options for the weather journal: one page and a booklet style with opinion writing and weather graphing.

The kids will think about how the weather affects their daily lives with the weather cause and effect.
My favorite weather activity is when the kids think about the food that would fall from the sky in the town of Chewandswallow (from the book Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs).

Freebie Fridays

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday
With that being said, the menu is the freebie.  Click here to download.

If you would like the entire unit, check it out in my Teachers Pay Teachers store.

Have a GREAT day!

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Continents, Maps, and Globes... Oh, My!

My weekends have been full of Common Core math training, and then Kindergarten readiness testing this past weekend.  We asked for parents to give us their e-mail addresses, and we are e-mailing them the "Getting Ready for Kindergarten" pack I made.  The parents were really excited to help their kiddos get ready for kindergarten.  I'm really excited to see the growth.  If you would like more info about that awesome pack, check out the post.

In my free time (lol), I have been working on a unit that introduces maps, globes, and the continents.  Arizona kindergarten standards for maps and globes include:

  • Recognize the differences between maps and globes.
  • Construct maps of a familiar place (e.g., classroom, bedroom, playground, neighborhood).
  • Identify land and water on maps, illustrations, images and globes.
  • Locate continents and oceans on a map or globe.
I designed my unit with these standards in mind.

There are anchor charts on all of the continents, oceans, and information on the difference between maps and globes.  My printer has been acting funny lately, so I just open my files and show them using my document camera (which is connected to my computer).  The kids really get to see what is on the page, I save ink, and I don't have to worry about trying to find the charts next year.  :)  It's a win-win-win.

I made three easy readers to go with the unit.
"Maps and Globes" talks about the difference between maps and globes.
"I Can Find the Continents" has the students locate and color the various continents and the ocean.
"I Can Find the Globe" has the students cut and paste little globes while practicing spatial relationships.

There are three main worksheets.
There is a worksheet (which has the same information as the "I Can Find the Continents" easy reader) that has the students locate and color the continents and ocean.
There are a few versions of the sheets where students make a map of a familiar place.
There are a few versions of the sheets where students describe locations based on other locations.  One version uses cardinal directions, and the other uses kinder friendly words such as "to the left of".

I made this craft with options.  I love options, and it drives me nuts when I find an activity I like, but it's not exactly what I want.  I have different verbiage for our Canadian friends (province instead of state), and I have several different versions of the "our city" including "our town", "our township", and others. 

 I am also all about throwing colored paper through the copier, so I made three different options.

One version has the printed circles with the clip art on them (the earth picture is the example).  The benefit would be there is no extra cutting required after the circle is cut.  Each state is represented with its own clip art state in either version with the clip art.  
The second version requires you to print the circle on colored paper, and then the clip art is on a separate sheet that can be printed on white paper.  This is the version that is shown in the picture above.
The third version has blank boxes for the kids to write and draw themselves.

So, in celebration of finishing this unit, I am giving the "I Can Be a Cartographer" page as a freebie. 
Click here to download.

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

If you are interested in purchasing this pack, please visit my Teachers Pay Teachers store 

Have a GREAT week!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Save the Earth!

Do you recycle at school?  In my classroom, the recycle bin is close to my desk, so I can make sure the correct items end up in the bin.  Even with my "Type A" recycler personality, the wrong things end up in the bin.  It drives me NUTS!!  Bandaids are not made of paper.  So, when I was designing my Earth Day unit, I made sure to make a trash or recycle sort with bandaids as one of the items.  :)

I am really excited to try out my new unit this year.
The unit includes:

  • Three easy readers 
    • "I Need to Take Care of the Earth" which covers the types of pollution
    • "The Earth Gives Us Natural Resources" which talks about natural resources (in kinder terms.... "wood comes from trees" and "fish live in the water"... that is how it is stated in our kinder standards) and what earth is made of
    • "How Can I Save Earth's Resources" which covers reducing, reusing, and recycling.  It has space for the kids to write in the book about how they can reduce, reuse, and recycle.
  • Circle maps on ways to keep the earth clean
  • Worksheet on the three types of pollution
  • Natural vs. Man Made
  • Recycle or Trash (with band aid as one of the items to sort <grin>)
  • Two craftivities

Your freebie today is the "Natural vs. Man Made" worksheet and a printable chart on how to save the earth.

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Click here to download.

By the way, I only need 9 more people to follow my store on Teachers Pay Teachers, and the 100 follower freebie will be posted!  Hooray!!

Also, 'tis the season for testing incoming kinders.  Don't forget about my "Getting Ready for Kindergarten" pack.  It can be e-mailed to parents, so there's no need to print, copy, or waste any of your precious time.  Woohoo!  It has activities on letter recognition, number recognition, shape recognition, first sound fluency.  They use simple materials so parents will be likely to print and use them.  Also, there are clickable links to sites and videos that will help the kids with the skills that are necessary for kindergarten.  My entire team reviewed and made suggestions for this packet, so there's a lot of experience packed into one file.    

I hope you have an AMAZING week!  :)

Friday, April 12, 2013

Nose Pickers, Coughs, and Germs... Oh, My!

How many times a day do you look out at your students and see someone with only a knuckle visible under his/her nose?  Ahh.... the life of a teacher.  I feel like a broken record telling kids to grab a kleenex and sanitize their hands.

As I was looking through the health standards for my district, I saw several standards regarding hygiene and personal care.  I searched and searched for something that covered the standards I needed covered, but I had no luck.  So, I decided to make a unit that addressed germs and illnesses.

I am really happy with the activities I made and the links I found.  I think it will really keep the kinders' attention, and make learning about germs fun.  And for those of you that have to teach about germs, I think it's a great return on your $2 investment (which is always nice).

There are three different flow maps.  
One with picture boxes, one with picture/text boxes, and one with just text boxes.

There is an easy reader where students need to write about the steps to washing their hands, how to avoid getting sick, and the proper way to not "share germs".

There is a large read aloud book or anchor charts for the unit with some awesome clip art.

And this is the page that covers my district's requirement to talk about communicable diseases and their symptoms.

You can find the unit in my Teachers Pay Teachers store and in my Teachers Notebook store.

In celebration of this new unit, I am giving you the flow map with picture boxes.  I hope you find it useful.  :)

Click here for your freebie.

Freebie Fridays

Have a fantastic weekend!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

My Funny Kinders

One thing that I just LOVE about teaching kindergarten are the random comments from the kids.  They seriously crack me up!

Here are a few from this week:

Student 1: "My lip hurts right here."
Me: "Oh, I'm sorry. It looks like you have a little cut. It just needs some time to heal."
Student 2: "Do her lips hurt? Does she need chopstick?"

So, we've been learning about nutrition in health/science. Today, I started teaching how to identify 1/2, 1/3, and 1/6 in math. I said, "Which cookie would you want?" One of my students raised his hand, and said, "I want the 1/6 because the 1/2 is WAY too much sugar."

"We had caterpillars at our preschool. We had to watch for them to hatch out of their raccoons."

I try to post my favorite quotes on my facebook page, so make sure to follow me. :)

I'm linking up with A Turn to Learn, so hop over there to get some more funnies.

What Did They Say!?

Thank you, Mrs. Leeby, for the suggestion.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Super Kids Eat Super Foods!

In my class, we've been studying nutrition.  Now, I'm not always the best role model for healthy eating.  I am currently eating a piece of apple pie for breakfast.  Does that count as my fruit serving?  I am completely honest with my students, and I tell them it's ok to eat pie every once in a while.  I call junk food "Every Once in a While Food".

I've been working hard on a nutrition/exercise/healthy living unit that includes all of the standards my district requires.  There are a few standards that are really unique, such as talking how the media influences health decisions.  In my new unit, there are 12 activities, 2 easy readers, and a craftivity.    I talk about healthy eating, eating a variety of foods, trying new foods, exercise, media influences and more.

In honor of my new unit, here is a freebie to help teach the new "My Plate" nutrition guidelines.  Click here or on the picture to download your freebie.
Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Also, I only need 14 more followers of my Teachers Pay Teachers store in order to post my 100 follower giveaway.  Oh, and it is COOL!

Have a GREAT week!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Hooray for Daily Deals!

I jumped in feet first again, and one of my products is a Daily Deal on Teachers Notebook.  My 30 non-fiction easy readers are 40% off, which means you can save $4!  I know I love to save money, so now is the time to move them from your wishlist to your cart.  :)  Plus, all of the products in my Teachers Notebook store are 20% off.

Click on the pictures or click here to go to the listing.  

I hope you are having an amazing and relaxing weekend!  :)

Monday, April 1, 2013

Show Chaperones Some Love

I do not like field trips.  I'm just going to come out and say it, because they make me nervous.  I don't like riding on a bus, and I don't like being in charge of 24 kinders when we are off school property.  Last year when I taught fourth grade, we went to the Grand Canyon.  I had a group of boys that I thought would get too close to the edge.  I almost thought about buying those little monkey backpacks so I could keep them on a leash because I was so nervous about them falling.  We all made it back, so I was elated.

Anyway, I could not go on field trips with parent chaperones.  We are going on our annual field trip in two weeks, so it got me thinking about field trips.  I made a handy, dandy field trip packet that includes permission slips, yes/no notes to the chaperones, response activity for the kiddos, checklists, chaperone thank you notes, and more!  Take a look at the pack here.

I decided that I am going to show our chaperones some love by attaching some of the cute notes from my pack to a little goodie.

This is only one of the five options.  Hooray!!  Here is the link to download your freebie.
Classroom Freebies Manic Monday                        Freebielicious
Don't forget about some of my other products.  Check out my Teachers Pay Teachers store and my Teacher's Notebook store for more products.