Sunday, January 29, 2012

Happy 100th Day!

Our 100th Day of School was Friday!  Our day ended with a BANG... literally!  Each Kindergarten and First Grade class (that is 5 classes total) blew up 100 balloons and then laid them out in the hallway like this!

Yes... that is 500 balloons.  We then let our students come out and pop them all by sitting or stomping on them.  It sounded like fireworks going off!  They had SO much fun popping them.  If you click on the picture above you will see a minute long video of the organized chaos!

We also made 100 t-shirts to celebrate our 100th Day.  Each student brought in a white t-shirt and I traced a 100 on their shirt using a fabric marker.  The kids then colored in the 100 using fabric markers and used fabric paint to make 100 fingerprints (in 10 different colors).  They all turned out great and truly unique.  Here are a few pictures.

I made a sign for our door for the kiddos to walk through that morning.  I had to put it on the inside of our classroom since the door would have smashed it otherwise.  It reminded them all day they were 100 days smarter!

Our Kindergarten and First Grade Teams worked together to create 20 minute rotations and each classroom focused on a different activity.  We had 100 day sucker lick and exercises, 100 hungry ants activity, 100 day read aloud and writing, 100 day puzzles, 100 day old portraits, and rockin' the 100th day music fun!  I know that is six rotations.  Our sped teacher for K-1 decided to get in on the fun so she added an activity to our day.  The kids loved it, were moving and a grooving and learning in the process!  Here is a picture of our class wearing the crowns we made.  

Hope your 100th day was a blast!  

Gung Hay Fat Choy and a Freebie!

Last week we celebrated Chinese New Year.  Since it was the year of the dragon, we made "Dragon Lanterns" to hang in our classroom.  The kids colored a dragon pattern, glued it to red construction paper and then wrote their name in chinese... or at least tried. Here is a picture of my example that my daughter made it for me.  She is in 3rd grade.

I went to a website that allowed me to type in my students name and then it gave me their name written in chinese.  I saved the pictures to a file, printed and cut each one out to give to my students.  They LOVED seeing their names in chinese.  I had a couple different names in my classroom that could not be found, so I used their middle names instead.  They still loved them.  Here is a picture of my name in chinese and what the cards look like.

I also made some chinese fortune cookies for my students - NOT real ones, but ones made from cupcake liners.  I saw the idea on pinterest and thought they were cute.  Here are how mine turned out.

I made up my fortune strips to go inside them.  I made these REALLY late at night, so my creativity was not flowing very well.  I ended up doubling up on the sayings to make 22.  Here is a copy of the strips if you are interested.  Click on the image to download.

I also created a few graphic organizers and some writing paper to write facts about Chinese New Year.  Here is the freebie if you are interested.

We had a LOT of fun learning about Chinese New Year and what animal zodiac sign we are.  Hope you had as much fun!  Oh and I updated my post on the Snow Shovels and Scooping Up Nouns.  Scroll to the bottom and I have uploaded the patterns if you are interested.  Have a great Sunday!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Shoveling Snow and Scooping Up Nouns

I found the cutest shovel pattern and knew I had to use it for something.  We have been talking about nouns, adjectives and verbs... but decided to focus on nouns with this activity.  After talking about nouns and finding them in a shared reading I gave each of my students a pile of sticky notes and instructed them to look through a book that they were reading from their book box and search for nouns.  When they found one, they were to write it down on their sticky note.  They could find as many as they wanted but our magic number was ten.  They were very engaged during this process and amazingly all of them found 10 nouns or more.  I showed them my shovel and told them they were going to make a shovel (their color choice) and write all their nouns on it.  I checked each child's sticky notes before they could use a sharpie marker (they LOVED this) to write their nouns. Here is a picture of a couple of the shovels.

We used cotton balls in the corner for the snow.  We first used white crayon but ended up using cotton for an added touch! What I love about these shovels is you can see the differentiation as many of the nouns varied by the independent book they were reading.  I bet if you looked closely you could even guess the book or type of book they were reading.  

I would love to share the shovel pattern with you, but unfortunately it was just a few pieces of paper I found in one of my files I picked up somewhere from long ago.  My scanner is broken here at home, but I will try to scan it in at school if possible later this week if you are interested.  Here is how our wall turned out with all of our shovels. Our title is:  "We've got the SCOOP on Nouns!"  

Hope your day is a great one!

UPDATE:  Here are the scanned pages you can download.  I'm sorry about the quality.  I have no idea where I originally got these from so if anyone knows the origin or the creator... let me know! :)  Click on the images to download the patterns.

Hope you find some use for these! :)

Penguins and Dialogue

For the last two weeks we have been learning about penguins.  We have read tons of books and found lots of facts.  To end our unit we made our own penguins using our footprint traced onto black construction paper and adding wings, a white belly, orange beak and feet and used paper reinforcements for eyes.  They all turned out very cute and here are a few pictures of how they all had an original look to them.  


Even this one is so stinking cute!

So since one of our spelling/word wall words this week was said, we began looking at dialogue in the books we read, in our morning message and finally writing some of our own.  I gave each student a dialogue box and had them write what their penguin would say.  They made me smile!

I tried to get a close up of this one.  The penguin said, "I'm reading!"

It feels like Antarctica where I am.  Yesterday the windchill in the morning was 3.  However, it is supposed to warm up this weekend. (Above 30!) Have a great weekend!

I'm back... catch up time!

Hi everyone!  I have had a crazy start to the new year.  You don't even want to know why I haven't had internet access at home (unless you realize that 3 kids with 3 new ipods + wi-fi internet = huge $$$$$)!  I have heard stories before and thought that would never happen to me... I have to BITE my tongue.  Seriously, I did not know there was a limit on GB usage... and evidently it can happen fast.  Once it was explained to me, I deleted my device from those ipods and let's hope my next bill will be back to normal.  I will have to say my internet company had pity on me since instead of 3 0's, my bill is down to 2 0's but what a fiasco!  So... I'm back to blogging and thought I would catch up a bit.
My kiddos wrote their goals when we came back to school.  Yes... I'm that far behind.  Some of my first graders really put a LOT of thought into their goal. So our door reads "Ringing in the New Year!"  Here is a picture:

I have to share some of their fabulous goals so take a look at these up close!

Awww... that just melts my heart!

I know what song comes to mind when I read this one.... :)

What a great goal!

I guess I have some musically talented first graders!

I also wanted to share with you our homemade snowflakes.  We read the book Snowflake Bentley and then created our own snowflakes from paper.  To make them more sturdy we glued them to blue construction paper and then on the back the students were to write what would happen if they were snowflakes?  I saw a lot of creative writing.  Here are some pictures of how they turned out:

I LOVE this one!  How adorable!
I am glad to be back blogging.  I have a few more things to share but will create seperate posts for those.  Happy Saturday!

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