Tuesday, November 25, 2014

I'm so thankful for all my kiddos!

Good morning! I hope everyone has had a great week so far, whether you were off this week or still have to work another day.

My kiddos did a lot of fun crafts last week getting ready for Thanksgiving! We had so much fun!  We talked about all the things we are thankful for (I am thankful for my family, my job, and all my super smart kiddos in class...just to name a few) and then turned or discussion into our very first free write! We made foam turkeys  (from Michael's)...

We did a super fun directed art lesson. This lesson was SO time consuming. I budgeted for a half hour but it took us closer to 45 minutes. The kids loved it though, and I can use it as a measurable assessment for following directions and fine motor skills (double score!) which is always a plus.  Their turkeys came out super cute and I'm super excited for more lessons like this.

The last turkey activity we did was our tie-dye turkeys! The kids got a coffee filter and markers. They got to color their filter how ever they wanted. When they had it just prefect they brought it to me and I misted it with water to make the colors bleed together. After they dried the kids got their turkey body and glued it to the middle of their filter.

Some turkeys have a lot more color than others but I still think they came out beautifully! Don't you?
Well I hope you have a great rest of the week and I want you to know I'm thankful for each one of you and all that you do in the world!

Have a happy Thanksgiving and remember, every moment can be a learning moment.

Sincerely from TK,

Saturday, November 22, 2014

I'm on break! (Well...sort of.)

So I officially am on break! Yesterday I stayed EXTRA late to prep everything (and I do mean EVERYTHING)  for the next two weeks. I thought I got it all done, but alas...I did not. I am going to go back to school Monday and stay for a couple hours. I bought some new baskets and made some labels to organize my classroom and *drum roll* MY CLASSROOM LIBRARY!! 

So far my kiddos have been putting books back willy nilly, and often times they're not in the correct area or even on the correct shelf. That all stops! I bought a basket for each "theme" I'm doing and I will color code the books. Each book will receive a sticker that corresponds to the correct basket. I am so, so, SO excited!

I am also really excited to announce that I am having a sale on my TPT account! Everything in my store is 20% off for the next week! 

I have a HUGE gingerbread unit that I'm doing for the two weeks of December. I am also working on my units for January and February. So far I've got a bundle on arctic animals, the water cycle, and  the weather. They're no where near done but I'm already excited to get them out for people to use. I'm also looking for some guidance. I know my kinder team has put in a request for some specifics in a bundle I am making for them and my TK team has asked me to create our progress report forms, but if there is anyone out there who needs something or has a specific request, please feel free to let me know! 

Any who, our Thanksgiving themed crafts post will be up Monday and I'll be posting some of the Christmas/Gingerbread crafts we will be doing a little later as well. 

Thank you for stopping by and don't forget to stop by my {store} and take a look. 20% off sale for a very limited time!

I hope everyone has a good week next week, whether you work or not. 

Always remember, every moment can be a learning moment!

Sincerely from TK,

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Our fall crafts {better late than never!}

After many complications, a new hard drive, reinstalled windows 8 and $200 I HAVE MY COMPUTER BACK!! So, here is what I was planning on posting Monday night. 

We did some fun fall activities last week. We did some fall color thumb print trees that came out awesome! My kiddos are really still working on mixing up where their leave are, but a lot of them realized leaves FALL in fall and started putting some leaves on the "ground"! Super adorable!

 So these were a little difficult to get good pictures of. They are hanging from my ceiling, by ribbon, and the AC was on...so they were moving around a lot. I took about 50 shots of each of these...these were the best. Don't judge me!

We also did some fun watercolor resistant painting. The kids had no idea that crayon would keep the watercolors from painting through. It was a really fun lesson! Some of them really focused on coloring in their leaves all the way and others really focused on painting everything a deep green. They came out awesome and I am so proud or my kiddos for doing such a great job. Take a look at their watercolor painting!

This week we are working on Thanksgiving and turkeys! We did a scarecrow today (that I will have pictures of on Friday) and tomorrow we do foam turkeys! Thursday we are doing a directed art lesson to create a turkey from scraps of paper (this is going to be great, I am so excited!) and Friday we are making turkey hats! Cannot wait to show you these!

I hope you have had a great start of your week, and I thank you so much for being so patient with me and my sporadic posting. 

As always, happy learning! And remember, every moment can be a learning moment!

Sincerely from TK,

Monday, November 17, 2014

Computer problems

So just a quick update. My computer died last night and I'm in the process of getting a new hard drive.  I want to cry because as of right now I lost ALL my documents and coming projects. Anything posted is done through my phone. Hopefully everything will be back to normal soon. Thank you for being patient with me.

Sincerely from tk,

Sunday, November 16, 2014

The Turkeys are coming!

So I have a ton of pictures I want to upload to show you the lessons from last week, but sadly with the hectic-ness of this weekend (it's my anniversary and I had to leave work quickly to miss all the traffic) I FORGOT MY CAMERA AT WORK!!! (*sob*) So I'm going to tell you all about this coming week and I'll upload pictures tomorrow after school so you can see all the fun projects we worked on! 

So this week we have a ton of fun projects planned. On Monday we are coloring a scarecrow craft and cutting him out. He will be pinned together and put up on our theme board. Tuesday we will be working on our "What are we thankful for?" writing prompt. Wednesday (my favorite!) we will be doing TIE-DYE TURKEYS!!!!!!! I'm so excited! (Can you tell??) The kids get to color a coffee filter with marker and then we spray it with water and watch the colors blend together. Thursday we will color a big turkey cut out to mount our writing to it, and Friday we will be making Pilgrim and Indian hats and learning all about the first Thanksgiving. Unfortunately because of the new healthy snack act in California (I think I've mentioned it a couple of times) we wont be able to reenact the first Thanksgiving with actual food. Such a bummer! But we're still going to have fun. 

I also wanted to take a moment and let you, my dear readers, know that I have released my Gingerbread Man unit on TPT! It's 100 pages! A complete unit, with writing, math, letters and all sorts of fun activities, all for you to use during your winter months. I will be using it for the 2 weeks of December, but it can be used during many different times of the year. 

Now normally I have my products free for the first 24 hours, but because this product took me almost 2 full weeks of work I'm only allowing it to be free for the first 10 downloads. So swing on over and take a look, but be quick! It'll go quickly.

I hope you've had a great weekend, and, as always...always remember every moment can be a learning moment. 

Sincerely from TK,

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Veteran's Day

This is a personal post, and has 0% to do with my classroom, but I want to take a moment to talk about someone very important and very special to me. Today is a very special day for me and my family. I want to tell you a little bit about my grandfather. He was born in Poland in 1933and lived a happy life until WW2 and the Nazis invasion of Poland. His mother was a U.S. citizen so she was deported back to the states, leaving behind her young son and husband (both Polish citizens.) My grandfather lost his father on his 8th birthday. He was taken away to a work camp. My grandfather never saw him again. 

My grandfather survived Poland and WW2 hiding and running with his aunt who was only 3 years older than him. He had little, and asked for even less. He saw things that we only talk about in whispers, or that many people actually believe never happened. After the end of the war he came to the states at the age of 15. He worked hard to learn English and graduated high school at the age of 18. 

Shortly after he graduated he enlisted and served in the Korean War. He made it home and went on to get married and have three beautiful children (my father being the youngest.) He was a dedicated single father to his three children and worked hard to provide everything he could for his family. He is the best grandfather I could have ever asked for and it is so humbling to know him. 

This man, who has had a difficult life, endured so much more than the normal person, left his home and came to this country. Not only did he come to a new country, he learned the language, the culture and was so filled with pride to be American, shortly after he finished school he enlisted to protect his new country and their freedoms. He stood up and took his oath and fought for each and every person in this country; so they could have their lives, so they could have their liberty and freedoms. He has never asked for special treatment and when asked why...his simple response of "It was my duty and I was proud to do it." seems so matter of fact and beautiful in its simplicity, it just makes you want to cry. So on this day, Veteran's day, I am taking a moment to honor him. He was a soldier. He is a hero. He is MY hero and I am so proud to call this man my grandfather and my family. 

I salute you sir. Thank you for your service. Thank you for your dedication. Thank you for your pride in our country. Thank you for your sacrifices. Thank you for being such an amazing individual. I am honored to have you in my life, shaping and molding me into the young woman I am. 

I love you!

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Up and Coming! {Scheduling Sunday}

So, I'm doing something a little different with this blog post. Instead of telling you all about lessons I've already done, I'm going to tell you all about what I have planned up to Thanksgiving. For me, that is only two weeks of planning. I'm super excited!

Next week, our letter or the week is Ii. We will be starting simple readers!!! I'm so excited. We are going to be focusing on the sight word I and songs that go with it, along with crafts that really help them understand the /i/ sound. Our number is the number 7 so we will be working a lot with ten frames that show seven, tallies up to seven, and picture sets up to seven. I also have been teaching my kiddos about touch math to really get them ready for adding and subtracting next year.

Our theme of the week is fall. We will be doing a TON of fall activities. We're making fingerprint fall trees, fall leaf construction paper mosaics, AND fall colored leaf resistant painting. I'm super excited for the last craftivity! The kids are going to use their crayons to color in the fall leaves and then they're going to take some water colors and paint over it. My kiddos love to paint, so introducing them to watercolors is a very exciting!

The week after will, of course, be themed THANKSGIVING! We will be reading a ton of Thanksgiving books, one about the first Thanksgiving, one about the letters of Thanksgiving and one simply about turkeys. I have some fun turkey crafts planned. We will be making tie-dyed turkeys, heart turkeys, and reenacting our very own first Thanksgiving with Pilgrim and Native American hats! I am so excited I could just burst! I cannot wait to upload pictures of our learning for all of you to see! Keep your eyes peeled!

Always remember: every moment can be a learning moment!

Sincerely from TK,

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

"Gobble" up the learning centers!!

I have officially posted BOTH my turkey math center {0-20} and my turkey beginning phonics center {A-Z}. The phonics center is free for a limited time! (New products are free for the first 24 hours, then they must be purchased!)


Please swing by to take a look and as always, feedback is greatly appreciated!

Always remember: Every moment can be a learning moment!

Sincerely from TK,

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Ready for Thanksgiving!

I have a new product listed on my TPT store! It's Thanksgiving themed and free for a limited time only! Please pick up your copy and leave some feedback! Thank you much and I hope you enjoy it!

Check out my store to pick up your copy!

Always remember: every moment can be a learning moment!

Sincerely from TK,

Spiders and bats and ghosts! OH MY!

So, I don't know if you realized it or not, but it was Halloween yesterday! (I was very adamantly reminded by 17 bright scholars, so I thought I would share the message.) We had a blast with our pumpkin Olympics, but before I share any of that I want to rewind to the beginning of this week. I felt bad for not having introduced many informational texts. I know they have to have some exposure in kindergarten, but I had been dreading it since I unpacked my library back in September. This week I finally pulled out some of my science readers to read to the kids. These are scholastic leveled science readers and they kept the kids entertained while still teaching them all about their respective animals! 

With it being Halloween I planned on a bunch of different crafts for the kiddos. I figured bats, spiders and ghosts were pretty Halloween-y and, with my science readers I found a way to tie it in with an actual learning concept (double score!) Our song of the week is "Itsy Bitsy Spider" so I figured we'd do our spider craft first. I found some cheap black plates (Hello Halloween sale!) and decided on a craft. Armed with my trusty scissors, white yarn and my newly purchased black plates I got to work prepping and creating my example. 

The next day after we all sang Itsy Bitsy Spider I sat down on the rug with them and asked them, in a very serious voice, "Boys and girls...that poor spider has been crawling up the water spout all week, and he just keeps getting washed away. What can we do to help him?" Now I got many interesting answers, but one quiet little guy raised his hand and said "Ms. P...spiders live in webs. Maybe we could make him a web to live in." I could have cried because it was the most perfect answer. After we all praised him for such a thoughtful and awesome answer, we all got up and went to our desks. I passed out our plates, and the white yarn. I showed them my example and then I showed them how to lace the string through the cuts in the plates. The kiddos had a blast, and now our spider has a comfy dry place to live!

This week we were also working with our letter Gg so naturally...we made ghosts!! Another fine motor activity that the kiddos loved to do. I gave each of them a Styrofoam plate (this would work A LOT better with paper plates but I had Styrofoam on hand) and had them flip the plates upside down so the part you would eat off was face down and I put glue along the rim of the plate. Each kiddo got a square of white tissue paper that they had to rip into strips and then glue on the rim of the plate. I drew eyes, a mouth and the letter Gg on the front. Next year I will do this with paper plates and the students will draw/write everything on their own. Here is the finished product for this year:
The last craft we did was for our bat. I read our little science mini reader and we did our big can-have-are page as a class. Then we started out bat-lacing project. I prepped this project by cutting out a bat shape out of a manilla folder and tracing each bat individually before cutting them out. Then I hole punched each hole onto the bat. There may be easier ways to do this, but I couldn't think of any. (Please share if you have any ideas on how to speed up this process and not kill my arm/wrist with hole punching!) I cut orange yarn and laced it through the holes. 

I did not expect this craft to be so difficult for the kiddos but A LOT of them struggled with the up-down in-out of the lacing. As a perfectionist, I have had to learn to embrace and love the imperfections. They are adorable and my students are so proud of how they turned out. I can't NOT love them. Just to see their faces and how excited they are to show me makes me so in love with the product. 

We did do pumpkin Olympics on Friday. Each student got their own mini pumpkins, courtesy of one of my parents. We did a science experiment where we guessed, or predicted, whether our pumpkin would sink or float, and then we tossed (ok, placed gently) our pumpkins into a big tub full of water. The kids were SO surprised to see my big pumpkin floating right along side their little ones! I think every single one told their mom or dad about it when they were getting picked up. We also did Jack-o-lantern bean bag toss, decorated our pumpkins with stickers and markers, and did five frames with pumpkin seeds. 

Overall, a great week. I had a blast and I know my kiddos had a blast. I can't wait for weeks to come. That's all I have for now. I'm off to go finish some products for the classroom. 

Always remember: every moment can be a learning moment. 

Sincerely from TK,

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