Sunday, October 23, 2011

Catching up!

Oh my WORD!  Where has the time gone?!?  This school year is going by fast (well, that's not such a bad thing is it? Ha!).  Sorry for being such a slacker in the blogging world but I have been super tired lately.  Not sure if it's the weather - it's been really cold and rainy here this past week - but today is a sunny (still cold) day and I have a bit of energy in me (not sure how long this is going to last!).

Here's a bit of what we have been doing in my classroom these past few weeks.  We celebrated Thanksgiving and made this cute paper plate turkey.



This paper plate witch below is such a cute craft that we make every year.  This idea originated from my good friend and former teaching partner, Ms. Alves (who is just so creative!).  The kids painted the plate green in the morning, then in the afternoon they cut out her hat (which was already traced for them using white pencil crayon), cut out her eyes, painted red lips and curled her hair by wrapping the brown construction paper strip around their pencil.  Soooo cute!


This past week we read Going to the Park With Grandpa which is part of our Scholastic Literacy Place language curriculum.  The book focused on seasons so I decided to do an activity where students had to sort the cards according to season.

Click on the picture to download this activity for free.



Remember this...............??????
I made a crayon bulletin board outside my classroom for the beginning of school.  Felt like ages ago!

You can read about that post here.  I had a LOT of requests asking how I made the crayons.  All you need are empty 500ml water bottles (one per crayon) and the crayon template (click on picture to download).



Print out the template onto coloured construction paper.  You will need an additional 5x5 square piece of coloured construction paper per bottle to make the tips of the crayons - just roll them around to make a triangle shape and glue gun them to the bottle.  Then hot glue the crayon stencil (which is the download above).  To make the black oval names, simply create a black oval using the shapes button on Word and fill it in using black.  Then add a text box inside and type the child's name.  *Be sure to make the text colour white so it appears on black.*  That's it!  Pretty easy, huh? 
This is a short week for me - tomorrow is a PA Day (yah!) which gives me the opportunity to finally tidy up and organize a few things in my class that I have been meaning to get to for a while now!  I'll be back this week with updated class photos and an inside scoop on my Literacy Centres...which are going great!

Enjoy the rest of the weekend!

OH!!!!  I almost forgot........I need your help!  I am heading down to Buffalo, NY in the next few weeks.  I have read many posts about the dollar section at Target and Dollar Tree (which I always go to when I am in the USA).  Can anyone recommend any other hot spots to hit for teaching supplies when I'm down there?  Any and all help appreciated!  Thanks!




Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Syllable Fun!

I LOVE playing literacy games with my students...so this week we focused on learning all about syllables.  It went really well with the letter we are learning to print, "D", since we talked about how syllables and drum beats are similar.

I had each student stand up one at a time and together as a class we practiced clapping that student's name using our syllables.  All day long, I asked students to do different things such as: "If your name has 2 syllables, go wash your hands for snack" or "If your name has 3 syllables, it's time to get ready to go home".  They had a blast!

I am going to be putting out my Syllable Clapping game next week at my Word Work centre (which is housed in a bucket on my Literacy Shelf).  The students have to each wear a pair of "clapping gloves" (gardening gloves), choose a card and clap how many syllables that word has.  The answers are on the back - I like to write the number of syllables and the word as well.

You can click on the picture below if you would like the Syllable Clapping game.


Here is another fun thing I like to do every Fun Friday - well, that really means every Friday!  I just call it Fun Friday because we get to go a lot of other fun things we don't do during the week...such as...Child of the Day.  We learn all about one student (I choose a random name from the popsicle stick names I have in a small container) and 3 students ask him/her questions.  (I do a little talk about the difference between questions and comments otherwise everyone seems to want to say a comment!)  We record the answers on chart paper - and later the Child of the Day gets to take it home with them.  The best part of it is this pocket chart activity we do first as a whole group.  See the section that says "Clap it!  How many syllables?"  - we always practice our syllables!



Happy teaching!

Saturday, October 08, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!




Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Here in Canada it's Thanksgiving weekend.  It couldn't have come at a better time!
We had such a busy week...our apple unit wrapped up and we celebrated by visiting an apple orchard and picked apples (there really is nothing better than eating a fresh apple right from the tree! Yum!)

We did such *cute* activities this week - but...I guess rushing off for the weekend I left my camera at school!  Shucks!  Sorry everyone - pictures will be posted Tuesday when I am back at work.

In the mean time...

Our Literacy Centres are well underway and the kids are getting so good at them!  In case you missed it, I had a post several months back with my centre signs.  You can see that post here.

Here are just a few of my centres in action.  I change them every two weeks so the kids stay interested.  I'll update more in the upcoming weeks (as I said, busy week!)

The students had to stick the correct amount of apples on each tree.

Matching uppercase to lowercase letters on our Imagination Board - a *fantastic* product from Lakeshore!

Felt board fun!  Creating silly and scary jack-o-lanterns.  Another hit with the kiddies!


This is my Word Work Centre for the next 2 weeks - it houses a sound matching activity (another great Lakeshore product)

Here is our turkey craft - sorry, finished product picture will be updated next week! :)



Enjoy the weekend!  Gobble gobble!