Saturday, December 8, 2012

Dear Santa....

I saw this adorable mailbox at Big Lots and just had to share it with you. I thought I'd use it for some letter writing to Santa. I checked out TPT for some Santa letter writing units. There were quite a bit. Anybody have a favorite?

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Monday Made It Tuesday

It's Tuesday but I wanted to link up to Monday Made It and share my pocket chart holders.
Mini pocket chart holders
 I already posted about them here. Head on over to 4th Grade Frolics to see all the other crafty, creative projects other teachers have made or link up your own Monday Made It.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Halloween Picture Book Linky Party

Next week is October and I can bust out the Halloween books! First Grade Found Me is having a Halloween Picture Book linky party. I have lots of Halloween books so I tried to narrow it down to my top five! I always start with the following 3 books. They are great introductions to pumpkin activities, talking about pumpkin pie, and carving a jack-o-lantern.
Big Pumpkin is another version of The Enormous Turnip. Lots of different Halloween characters all take their turn at trying to pull up the Big Pumpkin. Drat...hmmmphh..Love the repetition. It's  a great lesson on teamwork. It's also a great story to act out. And there's pumpkin pie. mmmm...
A cute story of a snitched pumpkin. An old man and an old woman go searching for their pumpkin. The old man wants pumpkin pie. mmmm.....
Now that we've read about pumpkins and pumpkin pie, it's time to read about the life cyle of a pumpkin. I love this book because it is so simple and has great pictures. After we read this story, we do a quick little science experiment.
Will our pumpkin sink or float when we drop it into a tub of water? The kids love this.
 Then we carve it open, stick our hands inside the pumpkin and say "ewwww!" Everybody gets some seeds to take home and save for spring planting.

 Then we paint some paper plates orange, sequence the life cycle of a pumpkin and we are now ready to retell to our parents.
I love Diane de Groat's holiday books. I have them all, featuring the character Gilbert. I used to love to read this before we had our Halloween parade. It would set the mood. But now no more parades. But I still like reading it. And the kids love shouting "trick or treat, smell my feet" !
This last book is great to read the day after Halloween. Who can't relate to eating candy until you're sick? A little lesson on sharing and self-control. (But all that candy is soooo tempting!)

What are your favorite Halloween picture books? Link up at First Grade Found Me and see what others are sharing.

Sunday, September 23, 2012


Wow, hard to believe 6 weeks have already gone by.  A new grade level and a new LA program and I am drowning....glub, glub, glub. I miss kindergarten... I still haven't unpacked all the materials that come with Treasures, our new program... all we do is assess... no fun allowed and I think the Fun Police will be coming around soon. JK. They won't be necessary since there isn't any time for fun.
OK, kidding again. Sort of. We did make this cute project that I saw on A Teeny Tiny Teacher's blog that came from Hadar. (Click on the link and it will take you to her TPT store.) I needed something quick for Back To School Night and I thought this would be perfect so the parents could see some basic fine motor and writing skills.
No matter how much you model, there's always one that doesn't quite get it. Oh well...

 I wanted to show you the mini pocket chart stands my dad made for me. 
I saw these at First Grade Fabulosity. Why didn't I think of this? I say that because I asked my dad to make this chart stand for my puppet theater. 
Why didn't I think of going mini for all those mini charts I bought from Target?! Well, that's what Pinterest is for, I guess.  By the way, I scored on that puppet theater. I think it was regularly $28 and I got it for $5 at Lakeshore. Love that store, especially when they have great sales. I also live near their outlet store, even better.

One more thing before I sign off. It's fall, which means apple time. My friend Karen at Through The Looking Glass has a cute little apple bitty book freebie at her site. Hop on over and check out it out.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Monday Made It

Today was my first day back at school. I think there should be a law against school starting in August. It's still SUMMER....and very hot. Today was an inservice day, tomorrow the kids will be there.

So here's my Monday Made It. I had big plans to do lots of crafting for my class this summer, but it didn't work out. But I can still work on my projects (in my spare time) and post them. Anyway, here's what I made for the new year:

An apron. It's very similar to the one I made last summer but this one is bigger. It has 3 pockets, not sure if you can see them. I love to wear aprons, they are so handy. I can put my markers, small post-its, treats,  things I've confiscated from the kids, you name it. Sometimes the pockets get over loaded! With the left over fabric from the aprons, I made the mug bucket that I shared last week. I still have lots of fabric left over. More mug buckets and aprons, I guess.

The next thing I want to show you is some things my dad made for me. I bought the dough stampers from Lakeshore but I did not want to spend the money on the stands to hold them. I showed my dad a picture and he made them for me:

They came out great. I'm going to have to do a future post on things my dad has made for my classroom. He's also a great helper, stapling, cutting, gluing, whatever I need help with. So, come link up over at 4th Grade Frolics or just check out what other bloggers have to share. I'm off to get ready for tomorrow.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Who Doesn't Love Brown Bear Brown Bear?

It's a favorite in my classroom.  I've already had several copies fall apart because my students couldn't get enough of it. Luckily, I found multiple copies in a storage room and since they were just sitting there gathering dust, I decided they should come to my room and get some lovin'.

Another favorite of mine is the game I Have...Who Has? I have lots of versions of this game, some that I've bought from teacher stores and many that I've downloaded from blogger land. It's such a fun game and my kiddos love it once they get the hang of it.

So I just HAVE to share with you the I Have...Who Has? Brown Bear edition that my very good friend , fellow K teacher and blogger, Karen Kory, created.

How cute is this??? I know you'll just have to have it and guess what?? It's a FREEBIE!!! So hop on over to her blog Through The Looking Glass to grab your copy and show her some bloggy love!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Made It Monday

Here's my entry for Made It Monday. A very small one, I know but useful. You know all those teacher mugs we get every year?

Well, I made this to go inside the mug so that I could use it for something else besides drinking coffee.

Yeah, I know, it looks like an apron but it's not. They're little pockets that can hold markers and pens and pencils. And yes, you could just put the markers and pens and pencils in the mug without it but this looks so much cuter. And I like to sew. And I have lots and lots of fabric because I bought way too much.

If you've made something you'd like to share, head on over to 4th Grade Frolics and link up.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Vegas Blogger Get Together

These were the signs pointing the way to the Vegas bloggers and stalkers get together at the ITeachK conference on Tuesday, July 10! My pictures did not come out that great, sorry. I was so excited to meet everyone and either forgot to shoot the pictures or moved while shooting and ended up with lots of blurry photos.

Here's a couple of shots of everyone mingling together:

All the blogger celebrities were there, it was so exciting. I gushed all over them. 

After we briefly chatted, it was time for the raffle. Lots and lots of wonderful prizes!!! I actually won two prizes, a $10 gift certificate for TPT, oh yay, and a book on CVC words from Heidi Butkus, yay again. I love her DVDs. 

I had a great time. Thanks so much to Rachelle from What The Teacher Wants who organized it and to all  

Monday, July 9, 2012

Slow down summer, you're moving too fast!

This year I have 10 weeks of summer vacation. 5 weeks down and 5 weeks to go! Ever notice how 5 weeks during the school year draaaaaag but 5 weeks during the summer just fly by? What's up with that?? Anyway,  I've been enjoying my summer except for one thing that has put a HUGE damper on it. I got moved to 1st grade. Boohoohoo. I am soooo upset about this. I love K and am sooo not thrilled with the move. I know it's not the end of the world but I DON'T WANT TO TEACH 1ST!

I do follow many, many, 1st grade blogs and so I have been spending time looking at all the great ideas, especially for Common Core. Last year, we began CCS with Kindergarten and this year 1st grade will begin. Oh joy, I get to start all over!

 But for now I am in Vegas, Baby!! But not at the ITeachK conference because I don't teach K anymore. (boohoo) But I am excited about the blogger meet up. Can't wait to meet everyone!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Open House

It's been a month since we planted our lima beans. We didn't have very much success. Usually 2 or 3 plants don't grow but this time about half of our beans did not sprout. The students were so disappointed. I told them we'd plant again and they could take them home that same day.
These were the few that sprouted although one of them seems to have given up.

We also had Open House last week. I usually love Open House, but this year there was so much to do, testing, staff development and trainings, I kept it pretty simple. It was a combination of of two themes, spring and the farm.
We did some writing about the farm. We made a circle map about animals that live on a farm and what they do. I forgot to take a picture of the inside.
Saw this all over Pinterest. Went great with our plant unit.

Did some addition facts.
We watched the video The Very Hungry Caterpillar and illustrated the life cycle of a butterfly using a bean and pasta.
We  read The Grouchy Ladybug and made a book re-tell and a clock to go with it.
We also made the graduate portraits but I didn't take pictures of them. They came out really cute.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Little Gardeners

It's planting time again. This is one of MY favorite activities - planting lima beans. I always plant a bean too, but last year nothing sprouted. We planted the beans yesterday and when they got to school this morning, they were expecting to see some sprouts. Nope, they're not magic beans, sorry.
After we finished planting, we wrote in our plant journals.
Open House is in four weeks, I'm hoping everyone's plant sprouts and there are no casualties. Seems like someone always drops their cup or breaks the stem.

Our next activity will be our vegetable tasting party. We'll be graphing our favorite veggies.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Let's Get Together

 Today's the day! Do you live in S.Cal? In the Orange County area? Come join us at Cheesecake Factory at 1:00 pm at the Irvine Spectrum. And don't forget your camera.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

February Activities

There's always so much going on in February!!! I love seeing all the activities everyone is doing with their students. There never seems to be enough time to get everything done! But here's what we've been doing so far this month.

We started off with Groundhog Day. We graphed whether our Pomona Phil would see his shadow. Then we made these headbands with our predictions. The headbands came from Mailbox Magazine.
Then we took Pomona Phil outdoors to see if our predictions were correct.
And yep, he saw his shadow! Six more weeks of winter for us! The kids got the biggest kick out Phil seeing his shadow and then realizing they could see their own shadows as well.

Next up, the 100th day of school. I wanted to make a t-shirt that I found on someone's blog. It looked like the easiest thing in the world. But it wasn't, at least not for me. It turned out to be a hot mess!!! Ruined a very good cheap t-shirt.
We made crowns
counted out 100 fruit loops to make necklaces
counted by 10's to sequence school busses on their way to school
We also made a hundred link paper chain, and brought in 100th day collections. I would have liked for them to make their 100 year old portraits but NO TIME!!!

Valentine's Day was simple. We graphed the colors of the Sweetheart candies. I used the graphing pages from Teacher bits & bobs blog.

After this, we passed out our valentines and finished up with cupcakes that a parent sent in. Those 2 activities took up pretty much the whole morning.

And that's been our month so far. Still working on president activities but end of trimester testing is taking up much of our time. This year is flying!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

A New Year and an Award

Happy New Year everyone. It's been awhile since I've been here. I find out I've been awarded the Versatile Blogger Award by three wonderful bloggers. Thank you so much.

So here are the rules for accepting this award:
1. You must thank the bloggers who gave you the award.
2. Share 7 thing about yourself.
3. Find 15 bloggers who are new to you and nominate them for the award.

So here goes, thank you to Alex at The Teacher Diaries, Laura Starnes at Kinder Kraziness, and Tanya Solano at Ms. Solano's Kindergarten. Please go on over to their blogs and check them out.

Seven things about me, hmmm....
1. I've been teaching kindergarten for 12 years. It's a grade I said I never wanted to teach. Then I got moved to a new school and kindergarten. I LOVED it and don't want to teach anything else. (and I don't have to deal with standardized testing)
2. I am addicted to Starbucks' peppermint mochas and did you know that they really serve them all year long and not just at Christmas? Well they do, so I drink them all year long. Except for summer, when I switch over to the blended ice kind.
3. I love to craft but don't have as much time to spend on it as I would like. School gets in the way.
4. I love watching The Big Bang Theory. Sheldon makes me laugh but I would hate to have him as a friend.
5. Brownie and ice cream is my all time favorite dessert. Yum, I feel like have some right now.
6. Vegas is my favorite getaway place. I love that ITeachK is held there during the summer.
7. I always have to read the book after I see the movie at the theater.

15 blogs....well, here's the thing: All the blogs that I was going to give the award to have already received it, some a few times over, OR, they have not been active for several months. So I'm going to cheat a little on this rule. But I'll keep looking.