Saturday, January 17, 2015

Snowmen!

We've been knee deep in all things winter the past few weeks in kindergarten! When we went back to school, the weather was miserably cold here, so the kids really got to feel what winter is. Even though snow is rare for us, we still love incorporating snow and snowmen in our winter learning!
We started by reading Snowmen at Night {always a favorite!}. Then, we made snowmen to the way we thought they would if they had spent the night having fun and wrote about what our snowmen would do.


We also talked about snowmen in general and what my kids thought about them then made these torn paper snowmen that I love! {You can see the original idea at The Elementary Art Room}


We also read Sneezy the Snowman and talked about things that are good for snowmen and things that aren't good for a snowman. We attached our writing to these snowmen that I *very* quickly threw together {they aren't great, but the kids loved them!}.



In math, we also used snowmen to help us learn about non-standard measurement and measurement vocabulary. We each compared ourselves to our class snowman to see if we were the same height, shorter, or taller. This really helped the kids with the vocabulary as so many of them started by wanting to say that they were "bigger."

 Then, we talked about how we can use items in our classroom to measure objects. We started by measuring an alphabet chart with cubes, then we painted snowmen and measured to see how many cubes long they were. I was amazed at how well my kids did with making sure the cubes were lined up with the top or bottom of the snowman since this was our first time working with measuring on our own.






 Another area we worked on in math was graphing. I really try to do one graph at least every 2 weeks. We graphed whether we liked winter or not and before we did our data sheets, I had the kids talk with their partner about the data on our graph. Then, I wrote some of what they notice. I've really worked hard this year to do this with every graph - instead of just asking questions like, "Which was the most/least, etc." I have the kids generate thoughts about the data. Then, we filled in our individual data sheets. I love the sheet that says "The data didn't get all the way to the top!"  {This is part of my winter pack}



And on a completely different note, like many other classes, we made our New Year's resolutions. One of my sweeties has a brother in 3rd grade and apparantly, they're working on multiplication because she and some of her friends decided to resolve to learn their times tables! I was rolling!


Next week, we're moving on to penguins and I'm so excited! The kids really start loving informational text with that unit! Have a great weekend friends!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

More Numbers!

Ever since I posted about my numbers pack that works on numbers 1-10 {see the post here}, I've gotten lots of emails and messages asking if a pack for numbers 11-20 was in the works. Well, it took for near ever, but I finally finished it and I can't wait to use it in my classroom this semester!
This pack has the exact activities the pack for 1-10 does {plus an extra activity}, so if you own the other pack, the transition to these activities should be easy! Here's a little run-down of what's included:

I love to have my kids represent numbers in a variety of ways and it's something we work on all year. To help with this, we'll use these sorting mats. For each number 11-20, a mat and 12 representation cards are included {you can use the ones that best suit your needs}. The cards include ten frames, tallies, base ten blocks. equations, money, etc.

Along with number representations, I also love doing sorts with my class. Again, it helps them visualize different ways to represent a number and any time I can get them sorting, it's a bonus! There are some times I will have the kids sort cards {there are 6 for each number} between different numbers, and at other times, I'll have them sort whether a card represents a certain number or not.


Along with the colored sorts, there are also some printables to help our kiddos with sorting.
My kids this year also love puzzles, so I created more puzzles in this pack. The ten frame puzzles will match the puzzles from the 1-10 pack if you have it. For the base ten blocks, 1-20 is included in this pack. I really want my kids to be able to quickly look at a ten frame or a group of base ten blocks and know what number they represent, so I hope these help!

 Another area I want my students to really excel in, is making combinations of numbers. Now, in kindergarten, we mainly focus on composing numbers 1-10, but I included these numbers bonds for 11-20 for my higher group and for older grades. I used sequins here {because that's what I had lying around!}, but you could use any seasonal manipulative with these. 
A new addition to this pack {that I hope to go back and add to the other pack} is this Spin and Color/Cover game. It's super easy and I hope it will be a fun way for the kids to practice their number representations in a different way. The kids can either color the number representation or cover it with a manipulative.

The last part of this pack includes a craftivity for each number 11-20, just like the pack for 1-10. For these crafts, I backed them on paper since it was difficult to get both numbers together. I have loved using these for the other numbers, and I can't wait to assess my kids on teen numbers with these cuties!



You can grab all these activities by clicking the picture below:
http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Nifty-Numbers-11-20-1633911

If you'd like to get it bundled with my other number packs, you can click this picture:

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Nifty-Numbers-The-Bundle-1638613

Happy Number Teaching!!

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Resolutions :)

Happy New Year!! I pray you all had a wonderful holiday season and enjoyed spending time with your families - I know I have!
I kind of missed blogging all about our fun during December, and I thought about going back and sharing some pictures, but for now, I think this little blog is going to get a fresh start. To kick that off, I thought I would link up with Erica over at Erica's Ed-Ventures and share my goals for 2015.
http://ericabohrer.blogspot.com/2015/01/new-years-resolutions-linky.html

There are so many professional goals I have for myself that I want to accomplish over the next few years. This year, however, I really want to present. My friend Deeanna and I presented at the state math conference this year and it was a blast! I would love to do a lot more of it!
Although I've been saying it for years, I really want to start work on my masters in hopes of reaching a long term goal of teaching at the university level one day.
Overall, 2014 was a blessing for me financially. I'm continually blessed and amazed that I'm able to make extra money doing what I love on TpT. Because of the blessing, I was able to save quite a bit this year and open a Roth IRA {I feel so grown up typing that!}. This year, my goal is to open a similar account that will be a college fund for my daughter.
I also want to keep up with tax things in a more organized way, so that it's not so much work at tax time!
This is a big one for me. When I graduated college, I was very heavy. I worked extremely hard to lose weight and get healthy. After a few of life's curve balls and setbacks {and having a baby}, I've slowly let that weight creep back on and I've not made the healthiest choices for myself. I really want to start slowly {so that I don't fall back into bad habits} and work on eating better and being more active. I want my daughter to see me as an example of the right things to do...not eating junk! In addition, I want to take my health more serious and get regular check-ups at the doctor and dentist {that sounds so dorky!}.
My biggest personal goal is to read through the Bible this year. I feel like I am so rushed and so pulled and I truly do not spend enough time in the Word. I'm super excited about using the She Reads Truth App to help me do this!
I also want to get back to blogging regularly. I truly miss it and I want to figure out a balance so that I can at least blog once a week!

There you have it...hopefully I can report back later this year and tell you all these goals are still being thought of and worked on! I'd love to hear some of your new goals for the new year and if you're a blogger, be sure to go link up with Erica!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Christmas Conversations

Y'all!! What is about December that makes everything take double the time?? I have been dying to blog about all we've done this month, but in the midst of Polar Express week, it just hasn't happened. When I saw Abby's link up, I decided it was the perfect quick and easy opportunity to get a little blogging in and have a little Christmas fun! Here's my Christmas Conversation...
Want to read more {or make your own conversation}?? Head over to The Inspired Apple to see the link up!
http://theinspiredapple.blogspot.com/2014/12/a-christmas-conversation-linky-party.html

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Christmas Centers

Happy December everyone! If you're anything like me, you're wondering how December got here so quickly and you're a *little* bit stressed when you think about how to fit everything you want to do in at school and at home! I'm really trying hard this year though not to let it bother me if everything doesn't happen, and really enjoy this special season with my own child and my kids at school.
This past week, we had gingerbread week and the kids had a blast {I plan to blog about it, but you can click here to see what we did last year}! They also loved all the new Christmas centers we started during literacy workshops. During workshops, not all my kids always visit the same tub/activity. Because different children need work on different skills, I try to create lots of activities that all focus on different phonics skills so that everyone has something specific to their need. Here's what different partner groups are working on:

Matching uppercase letters to lowercase letters and recoding the matches:
Clipping letters for ending sounds {and getting fine motor practice in!}:
Spelling sight words:
A lot of my kids are working on reading cvc words:
{I've tried to start making a lot of puzzle activities this year in which I make random cuts, so that each puzzle is self correcting to give my kids extra support this year}

Determining the middle sound in words:

Matching pictures to their beginning letter:
Matching rhyming pictures:
These centers along with others are in my Christmas packs {click the images below to find out more}:
http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Everything-ELA-December-1587481

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/A-Sleigh-Full-of-Centers-Christmas-Math-and-Language-Arts-Activities-411967

I'm off to work on the next pack in my Nifty Numbers series...I can't wait to finish and show you!