Creating a Classroom Community

Setting up a classroom community is one of the SINGLE MOST important things you can do to ensure a smooth classroom year.

I spend the first 4-6 weeks getting those rules and procedures in place (before we get into the real meat of Kindergarten!), so that the rest of the year will be smooth sailing!

We love using simple getting to know you activities to make each of the children feel welcome and for them to have an easy way to share a little bit about themselves.

In addition, we have a special “Take a Break” space where students can go if they need to calm down, take a break, or reflect on a situation.  You can read more about what I do to set these up here and get these ideas going in your own classroom!

 

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PAEMST Award

Sorry to be gone so much lately! :)  I’ve had big things going on that I wasn’t able to post publicly, but now that the trip is over and done with, I can talk it up!🙂

Last month, I found out I was chosen to represent Indiana as the 2014 Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science award recipient. I was selected as a K-6 Science awardee.  I got to travel to DC to meet up with the 200+ other awardees!

Here are a few pictures from my adventures:

I LOVED being able to meet teachers from all across the country and the rest of the Indiana “delegation”.  We got to tour the White House and we were each presented with a citation from the President. :)  Its been keeping my BUSY planning for my family to come with me, and 4 days of sub plans!

Amazing Alphabet Ideas

One of the skills we practice constantly in Kindergarten is the recognition of letters.  During the beginning of the year, we practice naming and identifying letters and move towards putting a sound with each letter.  We eventually end up using those letters to make words and sentences.

When I introduce alphabet activities to my students, I try to make them as fun and as engaging as possible.  I also try to build in as many learning styles as I can so that my students will have a way to remember the letters in a way that makes the most sense to them.

Here are a few ways that I introduce letters to my students at the beginning of the year or anytime I see that a student needs to review the letters.

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You can read more about these ideas here.🙂

I’ll be back soon to tell you why I’ve been so absent from blogging soon.🙂

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Classroom Library Makeover

My classroom library was looking a little boring these days.  It didn’t quite fit in with the rest of my classroom, so with a little help from Oriental Trading Company, I fixed it up!  IMG_9430

Read more here about how I quickly got it looking new again and for some tips to make your classroom library cozy too!

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Tpt Giftcard winner

Lori Raines you are the lucky winner!! E-mail me at fuzzlady77@hotmail.com to claim your $10 Tpt gift card!

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Tpt Back to School Sale & A Giveaway

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I’m throwing a SALE!! August 1st and 2nd, my entire Tpt Store is on-sale.  Stock up on all your back to school needs now while they are on sale!! Don’t forget to use the code “BESTYEAR” to get 28% off your purchases!

 

I also have a $10 Tpt Gift Card to giveaway to ONE lucky winner.  Click here to enter!!

 

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Science Aprons

If you’ve been reading my blog for anytime at all, you know how much I like {ok–LOVE} science!! I was thrilled to be able to create some cute aprons for my students to wear when we “do” science experiments! They were super easy and quick to make and each one of my students will get to wear one each time we are investigating.

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Check them out here and be sure to check out the book, “What is a Scientist?” to use to introduce science to your students!

 

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Super Fun in a Super Science Test Tube!

There’s a TON of science and sensory learning packed into these terrific tubes! Using a few simple materials, you can create your own super fun in a tube! Check out these simple and exciting science and sensory learning tubes I created!

Source: Super Fun in a Super Science Test Tube!

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Chick Cam 2016

We were so lucky to be able to hatch chicken eggs again this year!  In all, we hatched 8 eggs out of 17, so not a bad hatch rate.🙂

Each year, its so hard for each of my students to watch a chick hatch in real time, so for the past two years, I’ve put my iPad stand on top of the incubator and prayed that the wifi signal held and that the iPad didn’t fall off, but not this year!

This year, we had the new and improved Chick Cam 2016!! My HUE Document camera!!

It saved the day and made it SUPER easy for ALL of us to be able to see our chicks hatching on the BIG screen, in REAL time, no wifi connection needed and no iPad perched perilously on my incubator!

This set up was SO much better!! Did you enjoy the serenade of “Call Me Maybe” in the background by my sweet kiddos?🙂

I just put my HUE Document Camera on top of the incubator, plugged it into my laptop, fired up the HUE Intuition Software (that comes with the Document Camera) and we were in business!

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I loved that each time a chick hatched, I could reposition the HUE Document Camera right over the hatching egg, so we could see everything that was happening in real time!

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Once everyone had hatched, we moved Chick Cam over to the warming box where we watched them be cute and run around! Each one of my kiddos wanted to see what the chicks were doing, every minute of the day, so having the HUE Document Camera set up helped us ALL see what they were doing.  We quickly noticed that the quieter we were, the quieter they were, so it helped us regulate our voices as well!

Did you check out my guest appearance on the HUE blog?  Click here to check it out and get some great ideas from other teachers how to use the HUE Document Camera in your classroom!

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A fun & easy Father’s Day Project using Neon Kwik Stix

Are you looking for a fun and easy Father’s Day project that won’t break the bank?  Check out what my son and I were able to create in about 20 minutes!

We have a tradition in our house that started 11 years ago for my husband’s 2nd Father’s Day.  Each year my son makes him art on canvas, personalized just for him.  He’s painted DAD in so many different ways, that we wanted to do something a little different this year.🙂

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We created this one of a kind subway art in just minutes using the NEON Kwik Stix (with a few Metalix Kwik Stix colors thrown in too)!  I’ve told you how much I LOVE the Kwik Stix since I received them at the French Lick Blogger Retreat in March–and I’m still LOVING them!!

All you need to complete this simple project is:

-a blank canvas (we used white, but I bet black would work too!)

-6 pack of NEON Kwik Stix

-6 pack of Metalix Kwik Stix

-pencil

Begin by writing out your words (LIGHTLY!!) with a pencil on your canvas.  I had my son think up words to describe his daddy (Daddy-isms he called them!!) and I transferred as many as I could fit on to the canvas for him.

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Then I set my son to work tracing over my letters.  The Kwik Stix went on smoothly and we loved the texture they left on the canvas!  My son traced over each work twice because he really wanted the words to stand out.

I’ll admit, at first I was a little bothered by my pencil line showing through his tracing–my OCD!, but the more we both looked at it, the more we liked the pencil lines showing through!❤

I just love how it turned out and we are ready to go for Father’s Day!

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We did use a few colors from the Kwik Stix Metalix 6 pack as well, my son liked the sparkle they added to the neon pack and he wanted to try to make every word a different color.🙂

The edges on the Kwik Stix made it SO easy for my son to trace the letters and get the color right where he wanted it to be.

Right now The Pencil Grip Inc. is offering a discount on their Kwik Stix and their fabulous Pencil Grips!! You can get 15% off your entire purchase, just use the coupon code YOUWIN15 at checkout!!

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Now it’s your chance to win some Kwik Stix!  Enter this giveaway for your chance to win one 6 pack of NEON Kwik Stix and on 6 pack of PRIMARY Kwik Stik!!

Good Luck!

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