Friday, April 20, 2012

Motion Freebie!

My kinders love the Read It, Trace It, Put the sentence together activities.  We sometimes do them as morning work, but they are also a part of one of my work stations.  I made one for Motion- focusing on Push and Pull.  My plan for this is to collect them when we've done and few of them and then put them together to make a Push/Pull book.  It would have the sentences the kiddos did and then at the end I want to have them draw things they push and things they pull.  That's one of the things we're doing today as a wrap up of our mini-motion unit.  I'll post a couple of pictures of the final product, but here's the link to the Freebie sentences.  Enjoy!  And, if you like this one, please see my TpT site where I have many different themes.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Digital tools

As a Kindergarten team, we've talked a little about how to teach Common Core Standard W6- With guidance and support from adults, explore a variety of digital tools to produce and publish writing, including collaboration with peers.  We've struggled a bit with this because we don't go to the computer lab and, if we did, how effective would it be trying to teach 28 kinders at a time anything in the lab?  We talked about using buddy classrooms to work together to create something, but I don't have a buddy classroom this year.  So, I haven't been able to do a good job with teaching that standard. 
Yesterday I decided to try to use the ActivInspire program we have with our Smart Boards to write and illustrate our version of The Little Red Hen.  We wrote the story together and then I taught them how to draw the first page.  Then children took turns coming up and drawing different pieces of the story.  Here are some pictures that show them in action.

How are other kinder teachers teaching that particular standard?  I would love to hear some ideas!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012


Part of our science curriculum has us teaching about motion... specifically "push and pull" as it says in our standards.  As I am reading Deanna Jump's blog today she mentions teaching "big words" to kinders as part of a unit.  She mentions the vocabulary of insects specifically.  Someone was questioning her use of "big words".  I am a huge supporter of teaching the vocabulary of instruction and not "dumbing down" (for lack of a better term) words and vocabulary simply because I am teaching little ones.  So it made me feel good reading this because today we learned about "forces" and "inertia" and we used those words along with "push" and "pull".  We explored with cups, geometric shapes, ramps, cars and even my son's Beyblades (tops).  Here are some pictures of our explorations.  Not the best action pictures, but the kiddos are seeing if objects spin, slide or roll.  Great fun!

My Beanstalk

Okay, finally got a picture of my beanstalk.  I took my sequencing sentence strips and hot glued them to the beanstalk.  Then at one of my work stations, students can read the story from the beanstalk.  The beginning of the story is too tall to point to but they all know the story from memory by now.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Little Red Hen Word Problem Freebies!

Next week we are reading The Little Red Hen and different variations of it (including The Little Red Hen Makes a Pizza).  I thought I would share some word problems that I am going to use in my classroom.  One of them is a "The answer is... What is the problem?" Here's the link. Enjoy!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Sequencing Jack and the Beanstalk

I created a document that retells the story of Jack and the Beanstalk on strips that fit into a pocket chart.  This week my kinders sequenced it and retold the story at one of our stations.  This picture shows what it looked like in the pocket chart.  You can get it here for free. Jack and the Beanstalk Sequencing FREEBIE. Later in the week we made a beanstalk (it's huge) and stapled it to the wall.  Today I hot glued the sequencing pictures and cards to the beanstalk.  I'll try to get a picture up soon if it!  My kinders loved it!

What's the problem?

This week, I discovered something fabulous for math.  I got the idea from Deanna Jump's Spring Math Journals.  You give the kiddos the answer and they come up with the problem.  We didn't use one of hers (although they are fabulous and I highly recommend them). Here's the link to her product.

Instead we did one with our fairy tale this week, Jack and the Beanstalk.  I gave them the answer and I took their ideas of what the number sentence could be that would make the answer of 6 magic beans.  Then I choose one (8-2=6) and they talked with their "elbow partner" about what the word problem could be.  I took all their ideas and chose one and wrote it down.  They LOVED it and can't wait to try another one!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Jack and the Beanstalk Pop Up Books

After retelling the story of Jack and the Beanstalk for the second day, I decided to have the kiddos make our very first pop-up books.  Good thing we had a lot of time because it was very time consuming!  But the results are fabulous.  They wrote about the story and then made a giant and a beanstalk to "pop-up" on the page.  My students loved the results and they read them to each other as they finished.  Fun, fun, fun!  Now they want to make pop-up books whenever they have extra time.

New Look

Wow!  I am loving the new look of my blog!  See what I can find when I just have time to do it!  Now that it looks prettier, I better get some good stuff up here!  Today should be a busy day of fairy tales.  We're going to read another version of Jack and the Beanstalk and compare and contrast the two!  Should be lots of fun!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter!

A Happy Easter and Passover to everyone!  I am super excited to start my Fairy Tale Unit next week.  We're starting with Jack and the Beanstalk.  I will use some of my Read It, Trace It, Put the Sentence together sentences in my Writing Center.  I've made some measurement games and some counting on task boards for my math centers.  At my pocket chart center, I have sentence strip story sequence cards to retell the story.  I've got a plan for a BIG beanstalk in the classroom somewhere too!  Lots of fun!  Stop back by later in the week to see some pictures!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Jack and the Beanstalk Freebie

Monday we are starting my favorite unit of the year- fairy tales.  We're starting with Jack and the Beanstalk.  So, I thought I would share some word problems I wrote to go with the story. 
I don't know if I am doing this correctly or not, but here's a link to a freebie I posted on TpT.
Jack and the Beanstalk Word problem FREEBIE

There was an old lady who swallowed a chick...

Happy "Spring Holiday" everyone!  On Thursday, we read the book There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Chick.  We sequenced it on a big piece of chart paper.  Then I had the kiddos make a basket that had all the things in it that she swallowed.  I finally used my CriCut for my classroom- I cut baskets and bows to use as tracers for the kiddos.  They made eggs, jelly beans and a chick and put it all together!  After they finished, they wrote about the story.