Wednesday, April 24, 2013

I'm moving to Kindergarten & Free Letter Cards!

Yep.  Kindergarten.  If you've been reading my blog, you know that I've taught a few years of first grade, am currently teaching second grade, and now I will be teaching Kindergarten next year.  That's what happens when you have a large group of students in one specific grade, and you are the last teacher hired at your school.  You move around.  But, don't get me wrong.  I am grateful to have a job. And I am excited to see what Kindergarten has in store for me!

Being the planner that I am, I have been Pinning and researching since the day I was officially asked told I was moving.  Actually, I knew it was coming, so I was preparing even before that.  I've found some great ideas already and I started a new board on Pinterest.  Check it out here if interested!

When I taught first grade at my last district, we started using a Phonemic Awareness book by Michael Heggerty named the "Yellow Book."  Last year, when I taught first grade in my current district, we purchased the "Yellow Book" to use the following year (this year), and then I later found out I was teaching second grade.  So, I didn't get to use it this year.  But we are now going to use the "Blue Book" for Kindergarten next year.  I really like it.  I'm especially looking forward to using it as it will be my first year in Kindergarten.

For part of the daily lessons, you need letter cards.  So I whipped some up last weekend, and thought I'd share!  Even if you don't use the Phonemic Awareness curriculum, there are so many things you can use the letter cards for.  Enjoy!  If you grab a copy, I'd love to hear what you'll use them for!

Uppercase Alphabet  - black with red vowels
Lowercase Alphabet - black with red vowels 
Lowercase Alphabet - blue with red vowels 
Uppercase Alphabet - all black
Uppercase Alphabet - black with red vowels
Lowercase Alphabet - all black
Lowercase Alphabet - black with red vowels
I plan on making more, so check back soon! I'm not completely satisfied with those lowercase a's!


Sunday, April 21, 2013

Animal Life Cycles

Over the last few weeks, we have been working on animal life cycles.  We learned about a butterfly's and frog's life cycle.  And we are now learning about a chicken's life cycle by hatching chicks!  I'm not really a pet person, nor do I like the thought of dealing with these little furry creatures breaking out from shells and having to take care of them.  BUT I know that it will be a great learning experience for my little second graders.

Here are some of the activities we did in our class for a frog's life cycle!

Sorry for the picture quality... I've been using my phone a lot.

Here's an activity I found on Pinterest for the butterfly's life cycle.

Finished product
Materials needed
I put the food on a plate on each student table for them to choose from when completing the activity
Brainpop Jr. also has some great quick videos on life cycles.


Monday, April 8, 2013

Best Party Punch Ever & "brownies"

First off, I saw this funny April Fool's joke on Pinterest and just HAD to try it with my kiddos last week.

Of course I forgot my brownie pan, but I made do with a paper plate and paper towels to cover it.  We have a snack time, so when we came back into our class for snack, I told my kids that I brought a snack for them... brownies!  They were excited, until I started passing them out.  I kept saying, "Mmm, brownies" and "See, these are brownies."  It took some of them a few minutes to get that they were brown e's and understand the joke.  It was cute.  I let them take the brown e's home to try out on a family member.

I also wanted to share a quick punch recipe.  I'm really not a punch drinker but I found this recipe on Pinterest and have LOVED it ever since.  The first time I made it, I didn't have some of the ingredients (like pineapple juice), so I substituted something here and there and like the way I make it.  I also halved the recipe because the original recipe makes two large pitchers/punch bowls and I usually don't need that much.  Check out the picture below for the recipe that I use.