Wednesday, December 28, 2011

11 in 2011

11. Favorite Movie You Watched
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Pt. 2
Hubby and I always wait to see the HP movies until our anniversary (July 19th). Sadly, this year was the last time we would be able to do so. On our way home we discussed how weird it will be that our children won't have the anticipation of a new HP book or movie coming out each year. Instead, they'll have them all readily available. I wonder if there will be a series huge like this when Nolan is older!

10. Favorite TV Series
This is always a tough question for me! I can never choose just one, but I think for 2011, it would be The Vampire Diaries. At the end of every episode I'm literally left saying, "WHAT?!?!" I don't know how they have a surprise at the end of almost every episode, but they do! Plus, Stephan isn't all that bad to look at, right?

9. Favorite Restaurant
Also tough to choose just one! I think I'll have to go with a local restaurant though, North Shore Grill. I love their crabcakes and salmon!
8. Favorite New Thing You've Tried
 This might sound silly, but we finally began planning our dinner menu for the week. What a difference that has made in our nightly routines! It makes life sooo much easier! 
I got the idea from this pin:
Then I changed it up a bit, so our menu looks like this:

7. Favorite Gift You Received
It's not necessarily a gift, but my favorite item I received this year was the Christmas card from my Hubby. He usually doesn't write much in cards, but this one was super special because of the things he wrote in it about the journey we've been through this year. And, of course, I wrote hardly anything in his this year as I was holding Nolan and finishing the card 5 minutes before exchanging gifts! *sigh*

6. Favorite Thing You Pinned
I love and made my own versions of these two onesies for my little guy. Such cute ideas! All of my favorite pins are baby related, shocker!

5. Favorite Blog Post
Let's Go Fishin'!
Flower Parts
I'm Still Here!
These are a few of my favorite blog posts from this year because they show some of my favorite games/projects that we do throughout the year. Of course, I had to include the Pete the Cat activities we did at the beginning of the year. Pete is one of my newest favorites!!

4. Favorite Accomplishment
Nolan Lee Cooper 
Need I say more?

3. Favorite Picture
There is an absolutely gorgeous photo that the photographer at the hospital took of Nolan that I LOVE, but we haven't received the CD yet, so this one will do:
and...since my little man is a WEEK old today, I was being a mommarazzi and got this SUPER CUTE shot:

I'm no photographer, so I get SUPER DUPER excited when I actually get a good photo! Someday I'd like to take a photography class and learn how to use a fancy-schmancy camera instead of just point & shoot digitals.
2. Favorite Memory
The birth of Nolan Lee. December 21, 2011 @ 12:12 pm 
I'm not sure if anything will ever top that one!

1. Goal for 2012
Get as much sleep as possible. Sleeping when the baby sleeps is hard; I want to get things done around the house instead! It's hard to just let things be when you have slight OCD.
I think my real goals for the year are
      1. Lose the baby weight (obviously)
      2. Find the balance between being a new Momma and going back to work in a few weeks. That will be interesting/difficult.
     3. Be the best Momma, wife, teacher I can be and realize that my best is all I can do...don't stress about it! Prioritize and do the best I can with the time/resources I have. Family comes first, then school.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Top 3 Posts of 2011

Fern Smith is having a linky party, and you're all invited! All you have to do is list your top 3 most viewed posts from 2011.
Here are my stats:
#3 Schedule
#2 Smartboard Calendar
and my #1 most viewed post of 2011 was...
Dollar Tree Goodies!
A big thank you to all who visited my blog over the past few months! I hope you all found something you could use in your own classroom :o)

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Sight Word Roll & Graph

I guess this post is what will probably amount to my last post for the next 8 weeks or so since Thursday is my last day before I begin my maternity leave! Not that I've been that good about posting regularly this school year anyway; being pregnant zaps a lot of energy from you--especially the 3rd trimester. Baby Boy is scheduled to arrive December 21st, and I hardly think I'll have time or energy to be creating things for school much less posting them. So, this is my farewell for now (unless I come up with something else before Thursday!).

Anyway, here is a sight word roll & graph activity my kiddos will be working on during workshop this week along with the two previous units. Nothing fancy, but it does the trick! The words are from units 1-3 in Open Court for anyone else out there who uses that reading program. 
The large word cards are to insert into dice like these:

Please leave a comment if you use these!

Monday, December 5, 2011

It's Beginning to Look a lot like Christmas!

December is definitely one of my FAVORITE months of the year. I LOVE Christmas, and I love the cute crafts I get to do with my students for them to take home as gifts for their families at the end of the month. Here are the first two Christmas crafts we've completed...hand/footprint Rudolphs and hand/footprint angels. I love pretty much any craft made out of their handprints and footprints because they're so small and adorable, but I especially love these two crafts because you don't have to prep much ahead of time during a busy time of year! Plus, just look at them; they turn out so darn adorable every year! I love the quirkiness of each one; they're special for sure! Moms and Dads are sure to cherish these cutesy Christmas crafts.

First up: Rudolph
1. Kids trace their shoe on brown construction paper (1/2 sheet of 9*12)
2. Cut out
3. Kids trace their hand on tan construction paper (1/2 sheet of 9*12 folded card-style)
4. Cut out
5. Glue antlers to back of face
6. Add googley eyes
7. Add red nose
8. Glitter up that nose so it shines! :o)
9. I glue the finished project onto red & green paper (girls & boys respectively), so they look neat instead of covered in dried up glue splotches. Then I add their names at the top and sometimes the year too.

Next up: Angels
1. Teacher traces socked feet of students on construction paper (9*12, this year I used pink for girls and blue for boys, but usually I do them all 1 color). **You need the definition of their toes for the bottom of the angel robe!**
2. Kids cut out
3. Glue tan circle on heels
4. Add googley eyes, pink yarn smile, and nose to face
5. Kids trace hands on white paper (1/2 sheet of 9*12 folded card-style)
6. Cut out
7. Glue
8. Cut yarn for each child to match length & color the best you can. Use tacky glue to adhere.
9. Tape halo to back of head
10. Spray completed angel with spray glitter to add a little extra magic! :o)
11. Add name & year to bottom of robe

I hope you enjoy these cuter than cute Christmas crafts as much as I do. Leave a message if you try them out! Or, better yet, leave a link to photos of your students' creations!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Better Late than Never...

Unfortunately, I was unable to post my patterns for the rip & tear turkeys. For some reason, my scanner has decided it doesn't want to work properly. Sigh. Here are the rest of our turkey photos anyway.

Here are our potato turkeys. I just love these; they always turn out so cute! This year I didn't take on this project with my class of 23, but I did this craft with a small group of students for our monthly celebration. They turned out great!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Rip & Tear Turkeys!

This is one of my favorite crafts we do throughout the year. These turkeys just turn out so darn cute! I also really like this project because it incorporates some much needed fine-motor work. The kids love ripping the paper and choosing the wiggly eyes. Here are a few of the turkeys that were completed today; I will probably post more as they finish them throughout the week. I also plan to try and post the pattern for all the pieces for anyone who wants to try it out with their class.

A Thanksgiving Surprise Pt. 2

As promised, here are some photos of my students' critical thinking work based on A Thanksgiving Surprise. Some kids are better critical thinkers than others, but all-in-all it was a good writing piece for November!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A Thanksgiving Surprise

My kinders LOVE the book A Thanksgiving Surprise by Peggy Archer! They think it's just hilarious the ways the turkey tries to hide from the pilgrim brothers. We also read Run Turkey, Run! by Diane Mayr which is equally as funny. 
Here's a critical thinking freebie we completed today based on A Thanksgiving Surprise. Unfortunately, I forgot to take pictures of their work, but I'll try to upload some later this week. Leave me a comment if you download and use it! I'd love to see what ideas your kids have!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

5 Little Pumpkins

Well, it's only a week overdue, but here is one of the fun Halloween activities we did Monday; the idea came from various other blogs. The kids had learned 5 Little Pumpkins in music, so they were super excited to do this project. It was great practice for ordinal numbers, and they turned out pretty cute!


We started by clipping the grass and gluing it on. Then we added the fence, drew and cut out the pumpkins, and glued them on. Next we added the ordinal numbers, and last they had to decide where the talking bubbles belonged. Some of the kids chose to add clouds and bats to their pictures too.

Gobble Gobble Giveaway

A whole bunch of WONDERFUL blogs (some of my favs) are hosting a HUGE Thanksgiving themed giveaway! Head on over to Kreative in Kinder to check out the rules and enter to win by midnight tonight! Good luck (but I hope I win!!).

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Schedule/Plan Book

Well, now that things have settled down a bit from the first month of school, my schedule is a bit more final (although, are they ever REALLY?). I always find it interesting to look at how other kindergarten teachers structure their days, so maybe some of you readers out there will enjoy checking out mine! This is the first year that I've had a consistent specials time--one of the luxuries of being in a small building this year! I'm really loving having such a consistent daily routine! It's also the first year I've been able to schedule math in for 30 minutes 4/5 days a week. Horrible, I know, but that's just the way my schedules had worked (not worked) out in the past. I worry about the math program that we'll probably adopt for next year and how I will fit that in. Apparently you need at least 45-60 minutes per day! Yikes! I guess I'm doing 45 minutes now if you combine my calendar time and math time, but it seems a little stressful when we're already supposed to have a 90 minute ELA block for Open Court (which I only have 60 minutes slotted because otherwise, I couldn't fit in math!). When will we fit in science and social studies?? I guess that's a worry for next year though.

Anyway, here's my schedule/plan book:

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

I'm still here!

Wow! It's been forever and a day since I last posted. My camera is finally fixed and returned, so here is what we were up to for the month of September...

Pete the Cat has been a HUGE hit in our room! We just can't get enough! Be on the lookout for the Pete the Cat: I Love my White Shoes book/CD in the October Seesaw Scholastic (only $7!!); many of my students have ordered one for themselves! Love it!!

We reviewed shapes with this Pete activity inspired by Kindergarten Crayons. They turned out absolutely adorable!
Pete the Cat is Rocking his Shapes!

We made these Petes and graphed the different color shoes. We did the cut and sort sentence and filled in the color of our own school shoes. The graph and sentence are from Deanna Jump's Pete unit, but Pete was my own creation.

Lots and lots of graphing!!

And we reviewed shapes the first week!

These shape monster glyphs from Mrs. Maya's Kinders turned out great! Especially for our first project of the year.