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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Too busy Playing

Sorry for not posting in so long.  I have changed jobs and have been very busy.  I am no longer in the Montessori classroom and I miss my independent, gifted students very much but am enjoying my new position  in a full day kindergarten classroom with 30 cuties.  The new curriculum for Kindergarten is completely play based and about exploration, self discovery.  It is taking time to adjust to this new way of faciliting learning but with this statement says it all
"Play is so important to optimal child development that it has been recognized by the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights as a right of every child."

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Dynamite Dinosaurs

Dinosaurs is such a popular theme with the students and the possiblities are endless.  Using themes in my classroom works great for me.  I have a labelled bin in my teacher cluttered filled basement with everything Dinosaur.  All items have been collected over years and work in each curriculum area. 

Sensorial Table with Moon Sand

Mr. Bone Head
 Measure how large the dinosaurs in feet. Great visual for them
Easy to put in your pocket and do during lineup.

The students are facinated about Dinosaurs and how they once roamed the land.  It is a great theme to integrate the food chain, climate change, adaptations, and other key topics. 

Monday, March 5, 2012

Crazy For Carle

Our Author of the Month is Eric Carle.  I love having fun themes that we can incorporate all curriculum areas.  His books are perfect for teaching the following ideas:

1. Grouchy LadyBug- Time, Feelings, Grouchy, Sharing, Size
2. The Very Hungry Caterpillar- Life Cycles, Food Groups, Counting, Days of the Week
3. Home for Hermit Crab- Ocean Life, Vertebrates/Invertebrates, Different Homes
4. The Very Busy Spider- Farm Life, Beggining/ Middle/ End, Mammals and Insects

Here are some examples of how I integrated his book into Language, Math and Art. 
What makes you grouchy?

Counting up the sum of all he ate.

Using Balloons to recreate the Hungry Caterpillar

Favourite Book Bar Graph

Monday, February 20, 2012

Winter Wonderland

In Canada you have to make the most of the winter months.  Below are some classroom ideas I would like to share...

Insta Snow makes for lots of fun.  Add some water to it and some polar animals. 

Snow painting.  I love filling up water bottles or recycled shampoo bottles with some water downed paint and let the kids go wild. 

Ice Gems- The students love stacking these, or hiding them around the play yard.   Fill a water balloon with water and food colouring and freeze.

I sent out a newsletter at the beginning of winter for parents to send in milk or juice cartons. We fill them with water and food colouring mixes, then open up when frozen solid.  We made an entire ice castle so far. 

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Kindergarten Helps me Lose Weight

10 Ways I  Lose Weight During the Day...

1. Carrying books, games, and toys back and forth from school each day. Estimated weight 5-15 lbs
2. 10 trips to the photocopier
3. Recess- not just for kids.  I tend to play with them- soccer is my favourite.
4. Dancing- man, kids can move
5. Being on my feet all day long running after little munchkins
6. Bending down 145 times a day to zip zipper, tie shoes, pick up toys, or check out their work.
7. Outdoor Supervison- walking and walking around the yard
8. Not having enough time to finish my lunch- or the coffee I have reheated 3 times.
9. Wearing a pedometer- the students love asking me how many steps I have taken.  They will encourage me to do 100 more in the next hour. 
10. I bring only healthy foods in my lunch to set an example.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

I love being resourceful...

Valentines can be crazy if you let it.  Every year I become a better teacher with new tools in my pocket. 

Some Ideas that help me...

1. Have each parent have their child sign each valentine with their name but it is not necessary to address the valentines to each students.    This is easier to distribute, everyone still receives a valentine from each student but it doesn't take two hours of sorting. 

2.  Have a sign up sheet for the party for snacks. This eliminates the chances of 10 students bringing 20 cupcakes and a total sugar overload.

3.  Look around your classroom for items you can use for Valentines art.   Below are some items that didn't cost me a thing to make and turned out great.

Water Colour Hearts:  you know those markers that aren't working that great anymore, why not dip them in water and draw on watercolour paper.  Give them a little more life.

These heart crayons were made using a heart ice cube tray, a microwave and all those little itty bitty pieces of crayons that no one every uses.

These heart soaps will be given to parents as their gift. I found this heart tin, melted some small soap scraps and added some soap colouring and scents I already had.  The students are thrilled on how they turned out.  

These Stained Glass Hearts look great on the window.  Cut up some tissue paper, cut out a heart from some computer paper and use some mac tac to seal and stick it all.   

I had some left over felt so this was our little sewing project.
Finally,  the "I Dig You"  valentines gifts.  Cheap to do: A shovel, some candies and the bag.  Total cost each $1.10

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

100 Day Party

This is a fun event for the students and myself.  We start on day one and add a one to our number chart and 1 straw in our "Ones" Cup,  everytime we group ten straws we talk about how ten cannot fit into the ones cup anymore and therefore had to make a "Tens".  We have counted and counted and finally we reached 100 days of school.  (and then a hundreds cup of course).  All day long we did everything 100.  Sang 100 bottles of juice on the wall at circle, did 100 jumping jacks at recess, took 100 sips of our water at lunch, and danced for 100 seconds.  Check out all the fun activities we enjoyed  ...

These were so cute!

Yummy! Each student put 100 snack items into a ziploc and on our 100th day we choose ten things from 10 bags and made our own trail mix.  

 Each student made a prediction about what life would be like in 100 years

Pop 100 Bubbles

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Playing with Words

Often during a rhyming lesson things get a little sticky when the students start playing with words.  I have had a group of children start a rhyme train;  one starts with hawk, the next child adds knock, the third one rock and of course just as the principal walks in the fourth one excitedly calls out "cock".  All the students stop and look at me and innocently ask me what cock is, as I have repeatedly told them its not a word unless you can use it in a sentence.  I quickly say its a male rooster and change the subject.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

All About Me...

I love science experiments, and learning new things.  Just last week one of my students asked me how long trees can live and how long does it take to get to outer space, and thanks to google I was able to answer him right away.  One of my favourite Science topics is learning about Health and Bodies. 

We always start our lesson about Health by having the students each take a sprinkle of glitter into their hands.  I ask them to then shake hands with another student and they can see the transfer of "germs" to the other.  I will ask one student to go wash their hands, and they then can witness the transfer to the tap of the sink and that its difficult to wash the "germs" all off without really washing their hands. 

During this unit we discuss our bodies, taking a look at our digestive system muscular, and skeletal.  The students are fascinated at what we can do.   Below is one of the projects done by the students. 

Monday, January 30, 2012

They never taught me this in school...

I can clearly remember my elementary days; the lessons about Dinosaurs, the dreadful integers, the grammar lessons, but one thing I cannot seem to recall is learning much about geography.  I have posted below some cool materials for the classroom all about Land and Water Forms. 

I introduce this lesson by having the students take some brown clay and make different island shapes on blue (water) paper.  We talk about islands we know about and search for them in the Atlas.  I then let them know there are other land forms and show them pictures and we discuss the forms they make. 

We then talk about water forms such as any lakes they are familiar with, what you can do at lakes and point some out on our provincial map.   I then introduce some other water forms and locate them on an Atlas. 

Saturday, January 28, 2012

I'm Obseussed!!

I've been having so much fun in the classroom lately I havent had much time to blog at all!  My apologies!!  But I'm going to make it up to all of you loyal blog followers by posting some great ideas for everything and anything Dr. Seuss. 

Each month in our class we focus on a different author.  Dr. Suess is not only great for beginner readers but the theme can be integrated into all different areas of the curriculum.  This past Friday we even had a party and invited parents to come and play with Oobleck, read stories, play games and see the showcase of the students work, ohhh... and of course enjoy some delicious snacks. 

Easy Cat in the Hat Snacks- icing, oreo, and red candies

Beyond Zebra inspiration for making a sentence using the after Z alphabet

Our Green Eggs
Fox in Socks Game

Thing One and Two

Learning about Adjectives with the book My Many Coloured Days
Barthelemew and Oobleck inspired- corn starch, water and food colouring

One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue fish with fish candies for graphing.