Monday, September 30, 2013

The Best Way To Store Center Pieces and a Happy Birthday Freebie

I have struggled for years to figure out the best way to store center pieces.  I thought ziplock bags were the best out there until I discovered.....wait for it..... binder pencil cases!!  I am serious they are awesome and I will never use anything else!  I looked like a crazy stalker when all the back to school products came out.  The best ones are the ones with the clear plastic front so you can use double-sided tape to adhere the label card to the front.  I think I have about a million hundred in the back of my car! The best thing about them is they store away nicely and they don't break.  I got very tired of trying to put the "zipper" back on the ziplock bag.  I bought all of mine at Dollarama and Walmart for $1.00 each - money well spent:)

Today was my first classroom birthday and I realized that I hadn't shared what I did for kiddos this year.  I love that I make all the bags during the summer when I am not crazy busy!

I bought Scentos bubbles (they smell yummy!), ring pops, large birthday stickers, and rubber birthday wristbands.  I bought the bags at the Bulk Barn.

All packaged up and ready to go!

And as promised - a freebie!  If you would like a copy of the topper I used on the top of the bag just click on the picture below.
Happy Monday my friends:)


Sunday, September 29, 2013

Mrs. Wishy Washy and Scaredy Squirrel

I have a split 1/2 class this year so no matter how you cut it - it's double the work.  I teach in a small school so I usually have kids loop with me the next year.  For this reason I need to be very disciplined and not have the two grades do many of the same activities.  I love having my literacy centers correspond to children's literature so I have been working like crazy to get my latest two literacy units finished and posted.  The first unit I posted last weekend was my ever favourite "Mrs. Wishy Washy."  My grade ones are going to love this unit!  I will be back with pictures in the next few weeks but here's a peek at the unit.
 I love this activity!  Students will sequence the story and glue them on to the paper strip.  After colouring Mrs. Wishy Washy you cut to slits in her skirt where the strip is fed through.  By gluing the paper strip again at the back the page can't fall out!

I posted the second unit tonight.  This one is for my grade twos and good ol' Scaredy Squirrel was the inspiration for this one.  I will be using "Scaredy Squirrel Makes a Friend" and "Scaredy Squirrel at Night" as the mentor texts for this unit.  This unit covers a ton of essential literacy skills!

For the final activity the students will write their own version of a Scaredy Squirrel story.  They are going to love that!  This unit is on sale until Tuesday evening so you can save a little bit if you buy it now:)

I will be back tomorrow to share some pictures of getting ready for October.

I hope you have a great Monday!

Friday, September 27, 2013

Five For Friday

It's Friday, Friday, Gotta Get Down On Friday!   Oh my word I didn't think I was going to make it!  I am beyond exhausted and my to-do list just seems to keep growing!  Anywhoooo I am so excited to be joining up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for my first "Five for Friday"!!

This week has been all about number words and Pete the Cat.  Like kids everywhere my class loves Pete!  
 We worked on reading and writing number words to twenty, and representing numbers using tens frames and tallies.  It always amazes me at how engaged the kids are when they love the theme!

I always have my kids do the center activity with their math buddy and once I've checked it they complete the corresponding accountability sheet in their weekly math booklet.

Thank you to The Bubbly Blonde for this a-dor-a-ble apple craft!  It was perfect for celebrating Johnny Appleseed's birthday.

We were loving getting our craft on this week!  This craftivity came from the Glyph Girls.  I absolutely love everything they make!

Daily 5:   Need I say more?  I am so proud of my kiddos!  We are up to 20 minutes during read to self and 12 minutes during read to someone.  I just beam with pride when I look around and see them so absorbed in books - it makes my heart smile:)

This one has absolutely nothing to do with school but I just couldn't resist sharing this adorable photo of our little baby girl Lilly!

And there you have it my friends!

I hope you are enjoying your Friday night!

Bye for now,

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Classroom Door Decor

I love having a nicely decorated classroom door.  Don't we all?  We spend all summer trying to think of something cute and inviting.  But let's be honest once the year progresses it gets knocked down the priority ladder.  So in August I decided that I would plan my classroom doors for the whole year.  That way I could keep the cute factor but reduce the thinking required:)  Tell me you don't relate?  My door is ugly not the most attractive colour so I started by covering it with white shelf liner.  This brightened it up but you could see the seams so I used turquoise duck tape to cover the seams and give the door a bit of colour.  Then I added the welcome banner, the sign, and a monkey circle (I made a boy and a girl version) with each child's name inside.  I think it turned out really cute and the kids love it:)  Here's a picture.

What I really love it that the kids can take their circle home at the end of every month when the new ones go up:)  I am getting October's door ready to go so I will post pictures of it next week once it is up.  In this pack I have included two different options of graphics for each month, a themed sign, and a monthly banner.  Here's a picture of the preview:

It is a PowerPoint unit so you can print out how ever many you need and you can easily add your students' names to the circle using your favourite font or alphabet.  If you are interested in this pack you can get it here:

And just in case you're wondering the two signs hanging beside my door are freebies at my TpT store if you are interested.  On the left side of the picture is my "How I Will Stop Bullying" anchor chart and to the right is my "Where Are You" sign. 

Happy hump day!


Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Johnny Appleseed Main Idea and Details FREEBIE

We are all about Johnny Appleseed this week!  I saw a terrific anchor chart over at The Inspired Apple and I wanted to turn it into a cute hall display.  I started by reading the book "Johnny Appleseed" by Steven Kellogg.

This is a terrific story and the illustrations are fantastic!  After I read the story we discussed what the main idea in the story was and then we brainstormed some of the details that we learned about him. Once we were done I had them complete this cute little activity - they turned out really cute and we got lots of compliments once they were hung up in the hall!

If you'd like a copy just click the picture:)

I hope you're having a great week!

Happy Teaching!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Something Smells Yummy!

Really?  Hard to believe that something that starts out looking like this could smell soooo good!  To celebrate the arrival of fall I decided to gift each of my kiddos with a container of pumpkin spice play-doh and let me tell you it smells yummy in my house right now!  I decided to go with the "cook" version of play-doh and it was super simple and quick.  From start to finish - less than a half hour:)

5 1/2 cups flour 
2 cups salt
8 tsp cream of tartar
1 tin of pumpkin spice
3/4 cup oil
4 cups of water

You simply add all the ingredients to the pot, stir on medium until all the lumps are out and then knead on a flour covered counter.

You have to add quite a bit of flour when you are kneading it but it is beautiful to work with - not really sticky.  I have 20 kids so each child got exactly 1/2 cup (Yes, I measured!).  Instead of using ziplock bags like I have in the past I bought actual containers and I figure I will reuse them each year.  In the long run I think it is more economical and the play-doh will last longer.  

I can't wait to give it to my students tomorrow - they will just love it!

I hope you had a good Monday!

Bye for now,