Sunday, December 6, 2015

Cookie Shop Dramatic Play in time for Christmas

I changed out their dramatic play center over the Thanksgiving break. It is now a Cookie Shop! How fun has this been!

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Drugs arrrrgh bad!

This last week was Red Ribbon Week, which is a national drug-free campaign. We always have a door decorating contest. My co-worker and I have doors very close together and decided to make our one huge project. (and that it was!) I love how this pirate ship turned out, but it was really a lot of work. BTW......we did win.

Monday, October 26, 2015

It's Here and It's PURPLE!!!

Guess what?! The Classroom Friendly pencil sharpener is now available in POPULAR PURPLE! Isn't it beautiful?

I'm sure you've remembered my ranting and raving about how wonderful these are! In fact I've blogged about them before. See HERE! I just wanted to show you the new awesome color they have just came out with!  

 This is my student teaching using this sharpener...........

Check them out! 

Thursday, October 8, 2015

October Bulletin Board

Our Kindergarten team takes turns decorating the bulletin board in our pod and guess whose turn it was for October? You guessed it! I should mention that in lieu of a Halloween parade and party at school, we have a HUGE fall festival family night a few days before Halloween.  Each grade level (or pod) is in charge of creating a theme and activities. Well, we did spiders last year and really enjoyed it, so spiders it is again! I wanted the bulletin board to have something about spiders on it, so I went back to an oldie, but a goodie. All kids LOVE to marble paint! We painted spider webs for the background and then I printed the cute spiders that I got FREE from my favorite clip artist on TPT, Educlips. (Get yours free HERE)  I added their cute little faces to personalize them and then printed some of our books that we've read this year. The kids really enjoyed seeing themselves as spiders!  Here's some pics of them painting and the finished board.

Friday, August 28, 2015

The Best Part of Me

So I saw a bulletin board on Pinterest of a teacher that used Wendy Ewald's book "The Best Part of Me" to create a collage of her students' body parts that they thought were their best parts. I decided to do it with my Kinders.  The students loved this and had some sweet and funny answers. I loved how they turned out!

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Classroom Reveal 2015-2016!

I've moved to a new classroom, so I thought a new color scheme was in order! Hope my Kinders like it- I Love it!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Centers in Action!

Yesterday I blogged about how I organize my materials for my centers. Today I will explain how my centers are actually ran. I changed how I run them just slightly from the previous year. I still continue to use a "Daily 5" structure, but it is now called "LEARN". This stands for Listen to Reading, Enjoy a Book, Attention to Writing, Read to Teacher/Someone, New Words.  I LOVE this and found it HERE. Reagan Tunstall is amazing, really! Anyway, I bought her center rotation system and tweaked it to fit my needs. I turned the powerpoint into a SMART board file, added my animal groups, links and timer.

Okay, let me sloooow down and start from the beginning...... I divide the students into 5 groups - Lions, Tigers, Giraffes, Elephants, and Monkeys. My lions are my highest students and so on. I form these groups based on many different things, but mostly by their skill performance and behavior.  They change periodically, as I see fit.  Here are my posters that I laminate and then write their names on with dry erase. I've also included an editable version if you prefer to type their names. (I used "African" font for the title- it's free and can be found HERE)
Click on Pic!

Now, as I briefly mentioned above, I use a Daily 5 structure during centers. We go through the whole introduction of centers, just like the Sisters. We use anchor charts and go over expectations EVERY day for at least the first month. I use these posters as my anchor charts. They are free and I print them as poster size, cut, glue, and laminate them.

Click on pic to get yours!

So, I have these 5 centers that we rotate to every 15 minutes for 5 rotations. Realistically, once you include a couple minutes for clean-up time, centers usually take around 90 minutes total. We can usually get 4 of the 5 rotations completed before lunch and then the last one after lunch. The students know where to go by viewing the board (they end up having it basically memorized).

This is what the main menu looks like.

When you click on the each sign it takes you to the page that shows who goes where and includes the timer to keep us on track. They look like this. 

And so on........

This works for me and my class. They can practice their reading skills by completing a task, but not being in the center too long and losing their engagement. I get to meet with every student, everyday. My groups are usually only around 5 in each, so I get to really zone in on how they're doing. The biggest difference between what I do and what the sisters do is that I assign them where to go. However, once in word work, for instance, there are choices- 8 choices usually. Every student is assigned a number.  Once they complete a tub, they will check off their student number by that tub on the chart. So, if I'm student #4 and it's Monday and I Stamped the Room with Tub 2, I'll marked off my 4 in the column next to the pumpkin stamping game. On Tuesday, I'll need to select a different tub. Last year I did not have any form of accountability to which tub they completed and in the BIG picture, it probably doesn't really matter because every tub is a necessary skill to practice. This simply helps those that want to do the same thing over and over without branching out to work on a different skill. 

The next day they will need to select a different tub in word work, and so forth. I may, on occasion, require students to all complete a specific tub by the end of the week.

I hope this makes sense to you all. I'll gladly answer any questions that you might have.