Friday, 29 March 2013

Spring Cleaning Sale

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Spring has sprung!  Finally!!!!  It is finally starting to feel like spring.  The days are getting longer, it's starting to feel warmer and the snow - it's nearly gone!  To celebrate, I am having a sale in my TPT store this Saturday, March 30th and Sunday, March 31st.  Everything in my store will be 20% off!  Click the image below to go directly to my store.

Thanks to Krista Wallden from the Creative Chalkboard for creating the cute graphics above.  Check out her blog to see who else is having a sale.

Now that Spring is here I'll have to start the Spring cleaning in my house...that won't be as fun as the shopping!

Happy Weekend and Happy Shopping!

Friday, 22 March 2013

Palm Sunday, Easter and a Freebie

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This weekend is Palm Sunday.  We read the most touching book about this special day called The Donkey That No One Could Ride by Anthony DeStefano.  This book was a lovely gift from my lunch supervisor.
  It is about a donkey who is born weak and frail who discovers that he is destined to do great things despite his physical limitations.  He is chosen by Jesus to carry him into Jerusalem.  Through Jesus, he is given strength to make the journey and is proud that he has been chosen for this special role.  This book reminds us that our faith gives us strength even in the most difficult times, and to always believe that God is with us through our lives.
"My help is enough;
It's all that you need.
It's all you require in life to succeed.
The weaker you are,
The more strength I give.
I'll be there to help you
As long as you live.
I know you feel tired and frightened and broken,
But do you believe
These words that I've spoken?
Do you believe-I ask you again.
Do you have faith
I can heal you, my friend?"

We made our own palms by attaching green strips of construction paper to manilla tag in a 'V' formation.
"Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!"

Our volunteer in Kindergarten, Ms. Josie, made these wooly lambs with paper plates and about 1000 cotton balls with all the Senior Kindergarten students. 

Our prayer for new life:
Thank you for the new life around us and especially for giving us JESUS.  
The decorative design on the cross is made with a marble.  We placed the brown construction paper cross in a plastic bin.  We added a marble that was covered in paint and rolled the marble around to create the decorative paint effect.  This was done with 3 different colors.  

We are super 'egg'cited for our egg hunt and are all ready with our baskets!  These baskets are eco-friendly and were made with empty 2L pop bottles.  The bottles were cut so as to just leave the bottom of the bottle.  An extra strip of plastic was cut to form the handle, and stapled in place.  We used equal parts glue/water to stick various colors of tissue paper onto the basket.  It looks so pretty when the light shines on it!  We added podge for a glossy finish!  I originally got this idea when I did Co-operative Education in a grade 2 class when I was still in high school!  

Here is our Easter card.  This idea is from my teaching partner, Alessia Albanese.
"This little chick is hatching to say
Happy Easter to you today."

I wanted to leave you with a little Easter FREEBIE, so here are some Easter stamping pages.  Your students can stamp to make words or to make and complete sentences, allowing you to differentiate instruction based on the needs of your students.  It does not contain any religious reference so it is appropriate for Catholic or Public Schools.  I hope some of you will be able to use it this week!  Click the picture below to get your free copy.


Wednesday, 20 March 2013

3-D Shapes

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My goodness, I haven't blogged in a little while!  It was our March (Spring) break and I was just loving spending time at home with my kiddos, but now it's back to work!  We are currently working on 3-D shapes.  While my students were introduced to these shapes that 'pop' out in Junior Kindergarten (Pre-K), I find that they need more experiences with the vocabulary associated with 3-D shapes.  They can remember the descriptions of certain shapes (student talk:  "that looks like a ball!"), but have some difficulty remembering their names.  Here is my Math Wall.  It has a definition explaining what 3-D shapes are, as well as posters depicting each shape.  I have 2 kinds of posters.  One type of poster has a visual picture of the various 3-D shapes, but since the paper is flat, it doesn't do justice to what the shape actually looks like.  So, I also have examples of real world objects that look like each 3-D shape that I like to put in plastic baggies and attach to the Math Wall.  For example, I will put an actual toilet paper roll on the cylinder page, dice on the cube page, etc. (these posters are not pictured because I have to re-laminate the pages since they peeled after laminating! Eeek!  I hate it when that happens!)  These posters are from my Math Posters set. 

Here are our math activities for the week.

We worked on identifying the various 3-D shapes (sorry I didn't get a photo of this activity).

We sorted real world objects by the 3-D shape that they resembled. Then we filled out our recording sheet.

We build tall towers, that could stand and those that would not stand.  Here we talked about flat sides and counted how many flat sides each three dimensional shape had.
This tower stands.

This tower does not stand.

We built a small ramp and made predictions as to whether the shape would roll, slide or do both.  We pushed the solid shapes down the ramp, then discussed and recorded our findings.

Happy Teaching!

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Child of the Day

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I wanted to tell you about an affirmation program we do which honors the uniqueness of each child while engaging the students in various aspects of language development - it's called Child of the Day.  We do it every Friday and the kids just LOVE it!  I have to remind them to be patient, and that they will all eventually get a turn to be the Child of the Day because they all want a chance!  I originally got this idea from a now Grade one teacher at our school, Mrs. Commisso, who used to do this activity when she taught Kindies at her previous school board, and have shared it with my Kindergarten division.  It has been modified over the years, but the idea - we are all unique and special, is the same.  I have been doing Child of the Day since I started in Kindergarten and would like to share it with you!

Child of the Day encompasses these parts:

1.  Name Work
All students begin by standing.  Each letter of the Child of the Day’s name is cut up and turned over (blank side showing) on a pocket chart.  Turn one letter over at a time.  If the children standing have that letter in their name, they remain standing, if not, they sit down.  Once sitting they cannot stand again.  Uncover one letter at a time until the last child remains standing (The Child of the Day!). 

On the pocket chart The Child of the Day then has to:
Make it- put their name in order
Say it-tell the class their name
Count it- count how many letters and tell the class
Clap it- clap how many syllables
Cheer it- ask the class for the letters in his/her name
“Give me a G” – Class responds “G!” (repeat for all letters of his/her name).  At the end the Child of the Day says “What does that spell?” and the class responds with his/her name.

The Child of the Day gets a special badge to wear and keep.  The badge is shown below.  A  piece of horizontal chart paper is folded inside the black construction paper cover.

2.   Asking and responding to questions
The class asks the Child of the Day questions to get to know him/her.  The Child of the Day answers in complete sentences.  Write his/her responses on chart paper (each in a different color).

3.   Writing Sentences
Each student in the class chooses one sentence to write about the Child of the Day in their own booklet.  They also draw a corresponding picture.  I use a simple scrapbook cut in half for the student workbooks.  I draw lines on each page.  You could also easily use a simple work book that already has the lines on the page.

At the end of the year each child in the class has a memory book with one special fact about all of their classmates.  I like to glue the Child of the Day’s cut up name to the front of the chart paper cover and send it home with the child to share with his/her family.

I have uploaded this activity to TPT if you would like to try it out with your class.  Click the picture below to take you to the download.  You will find all these instructions in the download, as well as students badges, title page cover, word work cards (say it, clap it, etc.) and more.  

I love to hear from you.  If you download, please leave a comment!