Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Polar Bear Stations

At our Math Station, students used coins, chips, etc to measure their Polar Bear Paw.  This boy chose to line up the bear counters. He seems to have skipped right over the coins, I'm sure he went back and measured with those.

These stations are in my Polar Bear mini-unit (TPT only $3.50) but you could make them pretty easily! It may even snow tomorrow - glad I threw in the Polar Bear stuff this week. I'm liking the Polar Bear art project I got from Pinterest too!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Polar Bear - Read to Learn

After the thrill of the Penguin Unit (kids and I loved it) I decided to whip up some Polar Bear unit fun for the week - because every teacher wants to spend her Presidents' Day off making new learning materials right? Well, first activity was a big success. I made a little booklet for the kids to read. For about half the class the book is at their independent reading level. For others it is easy and still others have to work hard to get most of the words.  BUT the book was "to read to learn" vs. to learn to read. The students made the books (with teacher direction)

Kids cut out the front and back covers.

Sort the inside pages.

Then the BEST BEST BEST part - the kids read the books - together. I just love it when they read together.

 The students used the boxes on the back of the book to keep track of how many times they read the book.  They enjoy initialing each others' books. Afterwards we were able to have a nice discussion about all the polar bear information in the book. Yippee!
Polar Bear mini-unit
A Good Day!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Penguin Valentine Box and Precious Parent Gift

Our Party Parent went the extra-mile and pre-painted these cereal boxes. The Kindergarteners decorated them during their FUN party. Aren't they adorable (they left FULL of Valentines)?

We made these in one day. Painted them in the morning and the kids wrote on them in the afternoon.

You gotta love blogs and Pinterest. So many great ideas to use and adapt for your class.
Happy Valentine's Day!!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

100s Days 100 Fun

Each child had a heart with a photo. Their classmates added compliments during stations. They can't wait to take them home.

We have another week of 100 station fun planned.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Catching Snowflakes

I love how each picture is unique and fantastic in its own way! This project was quick and easy. I had them draw the head "circle" first. I asked them to draw it about a hand's width down from the top. I walked around and checked their circles.  I did have to turn a couple of pages or there would be no room for snow. We added the nose and I told them they would NOT outline the line under the nose. We drew the mouth top then bottom, the tongue and then the kids added teeth. Next we drew the scarf and sweater line by line. I gave them some ideas for the hair. They added their own sweater details. They each chose their own snowflake style too. They make me smile.

Monday, February 4, 2013

100th Day - Today!

So every year my classroom gets turned into a 100 Museum by the FDKers - but not this year:(  The 100th day is usually the end of the second week of February but this year it fell of the first Monday of February.  No time for the students to prepare the museum displays. We will still complete most of the activities over the next two weeks but how was I going to make the 100th Day fun and special without the anticipation of an audience for our work? Time to check the blogs and Pinterest.

I saw a fun display with a giant 100. The kids entered the classroom through the middle zero. My husband and I went to school ready to paint and cut just such a 100. It would be a snap, just get some big paper, blah, blah, blah. Well, our school doesn't have any 4 foot wide paper. The rolls of paper we do have are really thin. Even if we put two sheets together to make it wider the sign would surely rip the first time a kid went through. My husband made his usual suggestion of luan (he likes to go to Home Depot). This wood would work well (I just had to use wood would together) but where does one store such a thing when the 100th day is over? Then in a flash (a very short flash unfortunately) of genius, I remembered my classroom staple:  BLACK SHEETS.

I if don't have a few black sheets stashed in your classroom - get some. Need a backdrop for a performance - tack up a few black sheets (I even pleat mine as I staple).  Need to use the hall floor for party station - lay down some black sheets.  Need a groundhog burrow for reading with flashlights - toss a black sheet over a table.  Need to hide a pile of books, papers or projects - throw a black sheet over it. Last week I used magnet clips to hold a sheet to the chalk board for our impromptu puppet show.

Anyway,  I made a 100 for our doorway with a black sheet and 2 red hoops.  I did cut the sheet, but I have plenty. I made the rest of the signs with construction paper. Easy to remove and keep for next year!
We had fun crawling through the zero. Adults could slide through the side or lift the zero but I made a few passes through.
I found some fun counting videos (thank you Pinterest).

We went outside and stomped the numeral 100 in the snow.

I let the kids color 100 100s and tape them wherever they wanted in the classroom.  The rest room door was a favorite spot for some reason only a kindergartener understands.

The students completed a writing prompt "If I had 100 _____ I would . . ."  Some of the prompts said dog or dinosaur or something else kindergarten friendly/funny. (100 Day Unit - on sale today ). For some (amazingly wonderful) reason this activity was a highlight of the day.

Hope your 100th Day is fantastic!

Friday, February 1, 2013

Penguin Puppet Show

Rockhoppers put on a rockin' show for the Kindergarteners. Every "penguin" got a chance to perform. Some tobogganed, some danced, some even sang a little song.  All penguins loved getting into the act. Nothing like a paper bag puppet, a tipped table and applause for a perfect Friday afternoon. Last week we all made Emperor Penguins. Then we all wanted more than one kind of penguin puppet. So - our book buddies helped us make another puppet today. We each picked a favorite. The kids wanted all the details they knew - from pink feet to red eyes - on their penguins. This took some preparation and time (well spent). Next year I am going to buy black bags to make the puppet making a little simpler. Letting the penguins strut their stuff was a fantastic ending to a great unit of learning.  

Penguin Puppets
We Three King Penguins from Antarctica.