Monthly Archives: November 2011

The Gingerbread Man

Here are some links to the GBM of years past.  I’ve had some requests to see the letters so I thought that these links would help…



Day 1:

Day 2:

Day 3: (Brazil)

Day 4-7:

Day 8-9:

Some Polar Express Sites:



Hope this helps!

Kristen 🙂

P.S. I promise to be back soon with some new posts…I’ve got a busy one and a half weeks right now, and haven’t been taking many pictures–although I need to because it reminds me why I do my job!  Seeing the excitement I see through the lens of the children in my classroom when they are learning new things is the best!! 🙂

EDEL 545 Post

Hi Everyone!

As most of you know, I am taking grad classes towards earning my Master’s Degree.  As part of a module in my Technology & Computers in the Classroom class, we are learning about blogs and blogging and the idea of letting children publish their work to a wider audience on-line rather that just using a traditional method (paper and pencil).  One of our assignments is to respond to some questions (and add a few things to our blog).  So to my regular readers…keep reading if you’d like, but just so you know this isn’t one of my usual posts. 🙂


I think that writing has been forever changed through the introduction of technology.  Children have the opportunity to write for a much larger audience, receive more timely feedback, and interact with others from all over the world.  So many children today have grown up with access to many types of technology in their homes and at school.  It is what excites and drives them, so connecting their excitement with writing seems as though it could engage a student who might be reluctant to write in another way.

As Wollman-Bonilla shared in her case study of a six year old named Rosa, “Computers, it is argued, can provide young children with a context–“screenland”–that helps them learn how to discover and express meaning (Labbo, 1996).”

In this article by Gingell, he shares the triumphs of four boys in a primary school who traded traditional writing for “Tweeting” and overcame their judgements and feelings about writing.  Gingell also brings the issue of gender to light in this article, sharing that boys more often dislike writing than girls, but when given a different avenue with which to express themselves in writing can be just as creative as girls.

With the introduction of the internet technologies, there can be issues when asking students to publish their writing for such a large audience.  Making sure the students identities are confidential, ensuring students read only positive comments about their writing, and providing adequate access to computers are all issues that can arise when sending student’s work out into a larger arena.  Many of the benefits outweigh some of the issues of handled properly.  Letting students post and respond through a designated teacher e-mail not only lets the teacher have control of what is ultimately posted, but it also helps control the feedback that students receive to their posts.  As Kist & others share in their article about Web 2.0 in the classroom, parents in their classrooms have commented about the amount of time that their children will spend posting to the classroom blog and their attentiveness to doing so.

I can see many benefits to blogging by students and teachers.  I use this blog to share ideas with other teachers and to share pictures and a more detailed explanation of things we do in my classroom with parents of children I currently have in class.  I find that it is an interactive way to keep in touch and the kids just love seeing their work posted!  After looking over some of the classroom blogs shared in class, I was drawn in to reading Mrs. Yollis’s classroom blog.  I just love the idea of having student bloggers!  What a way to increase a students’ confidence in writing and providing feedback from many different people (including family members).  Children can also blog about their in class activities or keep journals on-line to track their growth.  Blogging by both teachers and students seems to be a high interest, low intimidation zone where both can enjoy sharing with other students, friends, family members, and teachers.


Thanks for reading!  Please leave your comments below!

Kristen 🙂

The Gingerbread Man

Hi Everyone!

We are getting ready to ramp up for gingerbread season! 🙂  I wanted to remind you that all of the gingerbread letters that you see used in my units are available for purchase.  I have two different sets of letters for sale this year because we’ve changed the unit a little bit.

The first set we used in 08-09 and 09-10 (these include more holiday references)

The second set we used in 10-11 and will use them again this year (these are less tied into holidays and more about folk and fairy tales).

There are buttons to purchase both on my Kristen’s Kindergarten Store blog (see the right hand side of the blog and scroll down until you find it).

Let me know if you have any questions about them!

Kristen 🙂

Pattern Block Shapes-repost

I’ve had many requests for these and I thought I would share them again….I’m also going to make a category for them “Pattern Block Sheets” so you can find them on the left side of my blog under “Categories”.  I’m also going to link to the original post in the event that you cannot get these to print–you should be able to click them once, then click on them again to print an 8 1/2 x 11 sized sheet.

Previous post:

For each seasonal “time” in our year, I have my kids complete a pattern to display.  These go along with the Pattern Block Graph I created (under the Math tab and in the PDF files).  I have an apple, pumpkin, (the turkey is in progress!) scarecrow (on the PDF page) ,a snowman, snowflake, heart, shamrock, and I hope to make an egg or bunny, and get the flower posted soon too!

Basically, what I do with these is this: When I had 1/2 day, the kids would glue the pattern block shapes on one day and complete the graph the second day.  Now with Full Day, I think we could get them totally done in about 1 hour–they take a lot longer than you think! 🙂  The kids complete the shape and then count and graph the number of each shape that they used.  Sometimes, I only put out a few shapes, and leave the kdis to problem solve (What can we do if we don’t have any trapezoids?), so that each graph will turn out a little differently! Each table might also get different shapes and some of my more advanced children will notice and go and borrow from another table! 🙂

I like these because even though it looks like a “crafty project”, I can justify my students matching shapes, problem solving, and graphing.

I use those vegetable party trays to put the shapes on the tables.  Each little section gets its own shape.  I keep pattern block shapes in the trays all year long.  I get the veggie trays at the Dollar Tree! 🙂  I purchased a class set and we use them all the time for sorting and for when we have special create a character (gingerbread man) felt store days—much more on that later! 🙂

I am posting them here and will convert them to PDF and have them there under the letter P.

Kristen 🙂


Here’s the link to the original post:

Kristen 🙂

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