Monday, July 30, 2012

schedule picture cards {updated}

In case you missed it the first time around - or you want the updated version - there are 9 more pages {that's 18 extra labels} in the new packet!

A few questions I've received to answer your questions:

*Can you add color to the pictures that are blank?  I can't.  These graphics aren't my own, they're from Lettering Delights and I'm not authorized to edit them.  {ha...nor would I know how!}  In my classroom I've just printed them out & colored them in before laminating.  Word to the wise: do NOT use crayons as they will m-e-l-t in the laminating machine, ie. leak out of the lines.

*Can you add this, that and the other to the file?  Sure!  Let me know what's missing, give me a few days to update and I'll get it back to you.

*How do I add the time to the blank boxes?  A couple of options.  1 - open it in a word processing file that allows you to add a text box over top of the graphic.  Format the text box so the box itself {the line} doesn't show.  Print.  2 - use a photo layering program like picmonkey to add the text.  Upload it like a picture and use the text {P on the left menu} to add your times.  There are various fonts available to choose from!  3 - print your time in whatever font you want from Word, then glue it in the box before laminating.  As long as you cut it down, it shouldn't show at all.  4 - good old fashioned write it in.  ;)

*Are there any other uses?  Always.  :)  Make labels by printing 2 copies.  Hang one in your schedule and the other in the part of the room set aside for that activity.  {drama in Housekeeping, science at your Exploration table, calendar by...well, the calendar, etc}  I did that in my room & my kids were able to easily find the area they were looking for because everything was consistent!  Mix up your regular schedule.  Instead of keeping it hung at the front of the room all day, take each card down as you finish the activity.  Transitions will be easier & you'll get less "What time is _____?" throughout the day!

There you go!  If you download, please leave a comment & become a follower.  Why?  So I can track what you're interested in.  I want to tailor my stuff to what you actually want and receiving feedback helps me to do that.  Why follow?  Honestly, because it's nice & makes me know you're really out there.  :)

Thursday, July 26, 2012

30 before 30 {and after}

Today is my 30th birthday. And I have to admit that I've been looking forward to it about as much as Rachel & Joey.
But I took a step back to really look at my life and I have no choice but to humbly say that I have been so blessed. So instead of the traditional 30 before 30 list that would set me up to look at what could have been, here's 30 pretty amazing things I'm super pleased to say I can already cross off:

And since life doesn't end at 30 {it really isn't as old as it seemed!} here are my next 30 things to try:

Would you like to play along?  Share either version.  And I encourage you to print it out & hang it up somewhere as well.  Take a random Saturday to pick something new to work on.  It's so fun crossing things off the list!  :)
{Thanks to Miss Tiina for the cute heart stationery!}

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Because shouldn't teaching be fun?!

The funny thing about the social media world we're living in is that we can network WAY past our reach. In fact, it's how I reconnected with an old high school friend of mine. Get this...he's also in the virtual education scene. How random is that?! His name is Mark Luchauer and with a $600 grant from his school district, he left the classroom to create Have Fun Teaching.

Here's my mini-interview with him:
Grades you've taught in the past? 2nd, 3rd & 5th
Favorite grade? 2nd
Favorite thing to teach? science
Favorite creation on Have Fun Teaching? Water Cycle Song
Favorite after school snack? Cocoa Puffs
And in the name of glamour, your favorite thing to wear?? :) Baby blue t-shirt with a narwhal playing a keytar.
{lol...Mark is such a fun guy!!}
Even more important than Mark's amazing resources is his passion for education, the next generation and you...hard working teachers. I believe in his vision completely so I invited him to share about his newest CD & DVD set to teach perfect for kindergarten!!
Learning shapes is a fun and exciting time for kids! These Shape Songs and Shape Videos by Have Fun Teaching effectively teach the shapes using a complete audio, visual and kinesthetic experience with high energy, upbeat songs that teach Shape Names, Geometry Skills, Math Vocabulary and Shape Recognition.
The Shape Songs CD includes 12 Shape Songs that teach shapes such as Circle, Square, Triangle, Rectangle, Rhombus, Trapezoid, Parallelogram, Polygon, Pentagon, Hexagon, Octagon, and more! The Shape Songs DVD includes videos for each of the songs! Be sure to check out the Have Fun Teaching Shape Songs and Shape Videos!
There are so many freebies available at Have Fun Teaching: flash cards, phonics lessons, math activities...even SmartBoard files!  But {bonus} if you want to order CDs or DVDs you can use the code HAVEFUN10 to get 10% off this month! Who doesn't love a sale, right?!

Go support Mark & use up all that he's created. And if you're looking for something that you can't find...ask him! You might just see your idea on his blog next.  ;)

Monday, July 23, 2012

easier anchor charts.

So many of you are in love with anchor charts. I see them on your blogs and all OVER Pinterest. But you have not see them on my blog because they are so intimidating!! I am not an artist and my attempts at being one are often thwarted.  You think I'm kidding?  Even in Draw Something I heart my stick people:
For real life. But there are so many amazing anchor charts out there that I have anchor envy!! Look at these...
{First Grade Wow}
{A Cupcake for the Teacher}
{The Inspired Apple}
{The First Grade Parade}
Now, if you're in my art-challenged boat, here are a few tips I've learned to make it somewhat easier: 

{use a transparency}
If you can't free hand, don't waste your time trying. Use a photocopy or print an image from the internet on a transparency. Then blow it up {doc cam, old-school overhead, whatever you have} to trace with a pencil and THEN color it in.

{print, cut, laminate}
Who says anchor charts have to be hand drawn?? Find an image that works, cut it out, laminate it & tape it to the chart.  Then draw & write your student responses around it.  When you're done displaying the chart, take off the image & save it for next year!

{use cutesy easier}
I loved Cara Carroll's readers & writers posters.  {ok, I love her everything.  She is the queen of cute stuff!}  But when I saw that these didn't require drawing, I decided to make an attempt. Mine are slightly different but I was able to make them AND be happy with the end result! Instead of great artistic skills, use lots of colors, little squiggles & an eye-catching shape to draw your kids in instead.

{See?  Huxtable doesn't care that there aren't any graphics!}
{make a poster}
If it's a skill that you really want your kids to grasp or you need it to stay up for a long time, save yourself the wall space & just make a poster. It'll stay on the wall with less tape, you can use super fun fonts & it won't have any mistakes {for you perfectionists out there, not me of course!!} Bonus, then you can share it with all of us! ;)
{Zeeks's Zoo}
{back it on scrapbook paper}
Thanks to Erica's example, I will be backing EVERYTHING on scrapbook paper this year.  Instant cuteness!
{Erica Bohrer}
{glitter it up}
When all else fails, add some sparkle. They won't be able to see the flaws with bling in their eyes! ;)

Saturday, July 21, 2012

you know it's summer when...

I love this Linky Party idea from Jeannie at Kindergarten Lifestyle.  How do I know it's summer vacation?  Because I actually get to take one!!  :)
Here's a few pictures from our trip to St. Maarten {The Friendly Island} in the Caribbean!
{Our beautiful resort on Little Bay.}
{Gizmo welcomed us by helping with the luggage.}
{The view from our balcony.}
{I love local, handmade, hand painted items!!}
{Hubs & I getting ready to do a sunset cruise.}
{On the catamaran on the Mediterranean.  Amazing.}
{I found a real live hermit crab in his shell!  Don't worry...I put him back!}
{Me & hubsy}
{At Maho beach watching the planes come in...very close to the ground!!}
{Beautiful sunsets no matter where we were!}

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Project Runway is BACK!!

Yes, Little Miss Glamour loves Project Runway.  {surprise, surprise}  And it is back tonight!

For real this time.  Last season was sans Heidi, Tim, Michael Kors and Nina Garcia.  It was fun to see some of the old contestants back but it just wasn't the same.

Remember to tune in tonight if you're a fellow fashionista.  9/8c on Lifetime!
Woot woot!!!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Rainbow of Friends {outline}

In one of my very first posts I shared my Rainbow of Friends activity that I like to use at the beginning of the year.
The title came from the book Rainbow of Friends by P.K. Hallinan but you can use any book about a child's individuality and uniqueness.  The point is just to get them seeing their similarities and begin making friends with their new classmates.

I've had so many emails and requests to share the outline but I can't because it's a printable from Mailbox magazine.  However, you continue to ask for it, so I did the only thing I can...I made a new one.  As long as you're a follower, you can have it!  :)
We keep our rainbow hanging up ALL year to remind us that we're a family at once & always.  Who else is hoping summer will stick around but is still already getting excited for the first day of school?!

Friday, July 06, 2012

good classroom finds & {six} winners!

Today, I am a happy lady.  :)  I got to see my new classroom, had lunch with my fave & her boys and took a trip to the Container Store.  {I can hear the angels sing when I walk in...ahhh!!!}  I love that place.

I went in to get this {for our trip}
But ended up with...this.  :)
{sticky ties for 56 cents! how perfect for the kindergarten ball!}

{acrylic box for makeup brushes.  with coffee beans in the base, it'll be a great start to my early mornings!}

{organizers.  on sale.  for.....organizing.....something}  ;)

{apple bucket!!  seriously no idea what's going inside of it.  but this gem is going on my desk!}

I didn't end up with any of these yet but how great are Lego shaped boxes?!  They have enormous ones that I'd love for storing my Lego pieces but $40 per box is a little much right now.  Maybe someone will get me one for my birthday?!  {hint not intended.  yeah right, it totally is.}

And now, what you've all been waiting for...the winners of my Sight Wordgories literacy game!  Thanks to all participants and an extra special "Welcome!!" to all of my new followers.  I try to be really good to my readers because I appreciate each one of you.  There are lots of freebies even if you didn't win today.  Or click the pic to get the game at my TPT store for only $2.

Since I reached another 100 mark, I've added 5 more winners.  So here are the lucky 6 ladies!!
{Thanks to Miss Tiina for the cute notebook paper background!}
I'm back to packing!  See you in a week with a trip update!  xxoo

Thursday, July 05, 2012

crate seats.

I've been on a DIY kick!  I guess that's what can happen when you're on summer vacation but actually stay in town.  :)

I love the thought of using crate seats at my guided reading table because a) more storage and b) no slouching and laying on the table!!  I'm not exactly sure what I'm going to store in them, but I'll deal with that when the time comes.  Once I start moving everything into my new room I have no doubt I'll need to find a place for something.

I love the box seats Erica has at her table {from Big Lots} but she said they haven't actually held up all that well so I figured it was worth the extra effort to make my own.  Miss Krantz has a great tutorial that I used.  And if I can do can you.

I looked ev-er-y-where to find these stinkin crates.  Where did I eventually find them?  Target.  Of course!  I bought 6.
I got this plywood at Lowe's.  They'll cut the wood for you so I took my measurements in to get the pieces.  MISTAKE.  Take a crate with you to be sure they fit.  I had to borrow the hand saw from our neighbors to take an edge off of all of them.  I would also recommend slightly thicker board as I'm afraid if anyone bounces or sits hard, these might crack.
I got this roll of foam at Hobby Lobby.  The tutorial suggests using 2 pieces of foam but it was thick enough with one that I had some left over when I was done.  Let me tell you in advance...this was more expensive than I planned, about 30 bucks.
After following the steps, I got 6 of these!  I'm not quite sure if polka dots will be my theme or if I'll just keep sticking with bright colors but either way they're super cute.  {3 green & 3 orange.}  Gender neutral and happy, right?  ;)
I'm choosing the winner {winners?!} for my literacy game giveaway tomorrow {Friday} at 10pm Eastern time.
{click the game to comment on the correct post}
Leave a comment saying you follow my blog to enter.  Post about it on YOUR blog for a 2nd entry.  We're close to the 600 followers mark, which means 5 additional winners!  Tell your friends...the more entries, the more winners there will be!  :)
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