Monthly Archives: December 2013

New Literacy and Math Activities

Here are some new Literacy and Math Activities I introduced last week:


I used jumbo popsicle sticks and wrote our sight words on them.ย  I then colored one end of the stick red or blue. IMG_1370

I used clothespins and labeled each one with a letter in the words.ย  I also color coded them with red and blue. IMG_1371


The children pull a stick and make the word using the clothespins.ย  The colors on the clothespins are supposed to match the color on the popsicle sticks. ๐Ÿ™‚ย  There is one clothespin for each letter–the children can make all the words without using clothespins from other words.ย  IMG_1373

Gingerbread Man dice toss is available in my Gingerbread Man Math and Literacy pack.IMG_1429

We are also working on measurement so we measured these gingerbread men with candy “rulers”.ย  This activity is also in the same pack. IMG_1430

The kids were thrilled when I added 3 different versions of The Gingerbread Man to our iPods!ย  We are listening to The Gingerbread Boy, Baby, and Pirates. ๐Ÿ™‚IMG_1375

This activity is see it, build it, write it.ย  The children pick a word card from the bucket, “see it”, make the words with the magnetic letters, and then write it in their own handwriting.ย  I will soon be changing out the handwriting part for letter stamps. ๐Ÿ™‚IMG_1377Kristen ๐Ÿ™‚

Chinese New Year

We also learned about Chinese New Year from The Gingerbread Man.

We created lanterns to hang from our ceiling.ย  We will leave these up until the actual Chinese New Year in 2014. ๐Ÿ™‚



St. Nick

St. Nick paid us a visit last week!ย  We created some shoes and left them in the hallway overnight to see if he would visit us and he did!



IMG_1388The kids were so excited when they got to school after our 2 hour delay! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Kristen ๐Ÿ™‚


The next custom/celebration we learned about while chasing the Gingerbread Man was Hanukkah:

IMG_1381 Here is the letter and materials we received (a menorah, candles, gelt–gold coins, and dreidels).

IMG_1383The kids LOVED, LOVED, LOVED playing the drediel game!!ย  We played two afternoons in a row!ย  We used unifix cubes as playing pieces and then after we were all done, everyone got a chocolate gold coin.


The second place the gingerbread man went was Alaska.ย  We learned all about the bears that live there and how different life is in that part of the United States.

First though, we had some unfinished business from the day before!ย  We had to bite into a gingerbread cookie and graph the part we bit first.


Then we learned about Alaska.ย  We read this book first. IMG_1379

Then we made a list of things we learned about each type of bear. IMG_1380Kristen ๐Ÿ™‚

The Gingerbread Man is back!

We have been having so much fun chasing the gingerbread man around the world.ย  First stop, Wisconsin!

This is what we found when we came in from recess:


The Gingerbread Man had taken our box of cookies.ย  We were going to take one bite out of our cookie and graph the results, but now we couldn’t do that!

The GBM left us cranberries to string for the birds and cranberry juice to taste. IMG_1365

Here they are stringing the cranberries.IMG_1366

And here is our graph. IMG_1368

You can get all the ideas and the paper materials needed to make this happen in your classroom here.

Kristen ๐Ÿ™‚

Gingerbread Man Map and Dollar Spot finds

Here is the map that I use to help my kids track the GBM’s travels around the world.


I got this map at Kohl’s last year and its made by Discovery Kids.ย  They are around $20 or so. They come with these awesome velcro labels that you can use to label the continents, oceans, countries, and even states/cities.ย  There are also animals included so you can show your students what animals live where. IMG_1352

Here are some of the velcro labels.ย  I sorted the places out from the animals to make it a little quicker to find what I need. IMG_1353When I was looking through the Dollar Spot at Target this past weekend, I found these 10 packs of foam gingerbread man and instantly thought of a math activity we could do with them to get them all decorated up. (I’ll share my idea later).ย  I picked up 4 packs of the GBM and 4 packs of the Pom-poms to decorate them with (along with some other goodies I already have).

Today is your last chance to shop the Tpt Cyber Monday and Tuesday sale! Don’t forget to use the code “CYBER” to get the discount!


Kristen ๐Ÿ™‚


Each vacation we have from school, a few of my school friends and I trek to our closest IKEA and buy lots of things we don’t really need.ย  Here’s what I got from our Thanksgiving trip.


I got this adorable cart I’ve had my eye on for 2 years now!ย  I got rid of the previous shelf that was here, got rid of lots of stuff and consolidated it down to this. ๐Ÿ™‚ย  My friend who went along suggested that I could use this card to help pass out materials to the kids more quickly.ย  I love that idea…just load up the materials on the cart and roll them to the kids or pick up materials from them.ย  I pushed it around my room and felt a little like a stewardess. ๐Ÿ™‚ย  IMG_1348

Here’s a look at what’s sitting on the top shelf.ย  These are the things I use on a regular basis.ย  The tall pink thing you see is my dollar store collapsible trash can.ย  I put things in it when I’m demo-ing how to do something. IMG_1349

The second shelf holds all my demo materials, pattern blocks, cubes, tiles, cards for our agenda, etc. IMG_1350This is another cart I got that I shared about a few weeks ago.ย  I went back to IKEA and got two more of these.ย  I’m using it to store the masters for my Math and Literacy Work Stations.ย  That way if I run out, I can quickly find the replacements. This is the same cart that I use for my small group materials.

Don’t forget that today is the first day of the Tpt Cyber Monday and Tuesday sale.

sale_300_300Use the code “CYBER” to get the discount. ๐Ÿ™‚

Kristen ๐Ÿ™‚

November/December Problem Solving Pack

Don’t forget that tomorrow is the beginning of the Cyber Monday and Tuesday sale on Tpt!


I created a new Math Problem Solving Pack for November (better late than never??) and December:

Screen Shot 2013-11-30 at 9.05.18 PM

The children count the turkeys or gingerbread man and write a number to show how many. Screen Shot 2013-11-30 at 9.06.29 PM

The children cut out the 5 turkeys at the bottom and glue them in two places to show their understanding of the math sentence at the top of the page. Screen Shot 2013-11-30 at 9.05.31 PM

The children color the squares in a variety of combinations (3-10) to make the total number.ย  They then write the math sentence on the lines. Screen Shot 2013-11-30 at 9.06.00 PM

Here, the children count the turkeys or gingerbread men and write the number.

Screen Shot 2013-11-30 at 9.06.15 PM

This is a simpler version of creating combinations–this time the children do not need to write the math sentence.ย  I will have my students complete this page before completing the page above. Screen Shot 2013-11-30 at 9.05.47 PM

The children practice writing the numbers from 1-10, 11-20, and 1-20.

Screen Shot 2013-11-30 at 9.06.43 PM

The children use the included gingerbread ruler (they cut it off the bottom of the page) and use it to measure the pictures at the top of the page.ย  The lines are included to show two examples so the children know where to begin measuring. Screen Shot 2013-11-30 at 9.07.08 PM

The children circle the group that has more or less. Screen Shot 2013-11-30 at 9.07.25 PM

Here, the children use words to describe the shapes. Screen Shot 2013-11-30 at 9.07.37 PM

After describing the shapes, these pages help the children to tell how these shapes are alike and different. Screen Shot 2013-11-30 at 9.07.49 PM

You can click on any of the pictures to get your own November/December Problem Solving Pack–it’s on sale Monday and Tuesday only for 28% off!

Kristen ๐Ÿ™‚

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