My latest "Pinter-ations!"

Monday, March 31, 2014

Rockin' Out with Jack Hartmann and Up and Away with Balloons!

Not because I had to come back from Spring Break today necessarily, but we had some exciting things happen in our classroom today!! Of course, learning everyday is exciting; but it is not everyday that Jack Hartmann comes to your school to sing and dance with you!  Our kids (K-2) had such a great time singing and dancing with him. 

Getting ready to sing the Hip Hop Tooty Ta Song! You MUST do this dance with your class. We always do this dance with some soul and funk in it! They LOVE it! Click here to watch it!

Even some of our teachers got into it!!! 

Look who I see! Leigh, The Applicious Teacher, got called up on stage to do the Chicken Count! How fun! 

He really puts on a great show and our kids were up and dancing. He was even nice enough to take some pictures with us! 

Please visit Jack on his website or youtube channel and see all the great songs he has for kids! I really love his math and movement songs. I did see that he has one for science! Super exited to get that one!

Today was also a gorgeous Florida day! Of course it was because we are back from Spring Break (last week when I was on break it was cold and rainy!) and a great day to start my creative writing project for:

I took a writing workshop with Melissa Forney once and one thing (of the many wonderful things she shared with us about writing!) that I really came away with from her and writing with young students is that they need to draw on their experiences. Sometimes we ask kids to write about somethings and they simply can't because they've never done that before! How can you write about a trip to the beach if you've never been there?? Good point, right? So, in her workshop she discussed making a shared experience with young writers to help them in their writing process. So, I came up with this project that I shared with you in a previous post! 

I took some Mylar balloons from the Dollar Tree (the regular rubbery ones don't work as well and don't last is the best way I can describe it) and I tied a small note to the ribbon. If you downloaded the note, please re-download as the balloons I used before were huge and the ones I used this time around were smaller. Use what works for you. Click on the picture to grab it! 

Now, LOOK at all these excited faces after I told them what we were going to do. They each got to hold part of their string as we walked out into the courtyard. They were the cutest "Balloon Gang" ever! Their faces just say it all! Love them! 

I spaced them out in the courtyard and had them huddle around their balloon. They said a little wish for their balloon and on the count of three we LET.THEM.GO!

Going! Going! Going!!!

So, now we wait and see if someone finds them. One year, another teacher did get a response from an airport 30 minutes from where we live. It was found on the tarmac. Pretty cool that it traveled that far. It was totally cool. Now we will be working on the creative part. We've shared an experience and hopefully now, we can write all about it! 

Where did our balloon go?

Who found it?

What did they do with our balloon?

I cannot wait to see their thought processes! We will be writing our final drawings on balloon papers. I really do not have a tracer but you get the idea! I will attach a string to the bottom and have them floating in our room to display them! 

I'll keep you posted throughout the week! 

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Dirt is Good for The Soul!!

Yes, it's true! Come find out why! I'm posting over at the Primary Chalkboard today! Stop by and see me!! 

Click on our banner to take you there! Get your plant soul on today!!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

It's Spring!!

I am on Spring Break and loving it! I love not waking up to an alarm clock (cat and kid alarm clocks don't count-- those I cannot control!) I go back on Monday and was thinking about... Spring in my classroom and some simple ideas 

Bulletin Board Ideas: 

This was my board and hallway last year...

I really didn't change it much except I haven't done the animal research projects yet. Pretty simple-- some flowers and trufula trees! 

Look at these other boards I found! I tried to give credit where credit is due! If I am in error, please let me know!

Love the colours and the artwork filled board! So happy!
Photo by Brittney

 The tree and butterflies just reminds me of Spring!
Photo by Jenni Scheid

Could not pass this one up with the bunny bottoms! LOL!
Photo by Jessica Cate

 Again, loved the flowers and watering can!
Photo by Lucy Pryor Brady

I really like the 3D effect with the balloons!!
Photo by Melissa West

Spring is also great for sooooo many science experiments! Weather, insects, temperature, plants, life cycles! The list goes on and on! My class is currently observing ladybugs. I ordered them

I felt like a kid at Christmas-- I was so excited! I've had them about a week now and they are starting to change into pupas!

The kids will love seeing this! Another life cycle I like to do in Spring is raising Monarch butterflies and all you need is this:

It's a milkweed plant. You can buy them at Lowes or Homedepot. Some local plant nurseries carry them. I look like a madwoman at my local nursery hunting for eggs. They are so small!! 

They look like little spots on the underside of the leaves! 

Some pictures of babies! Sometimes, you can tell if there are caterpillers on the plans because you will see holes in the leaves. 

A caterpillar!

I just choose to do these because they are much prettier to see than the ones from insectlore-- in my opinion. Now, I do realize that sometimes, depending on where you live you do no always have the opportunity to raise these because of the weather. If you do, though, you will not be disappointed! 
I usually keep my plant (you will go through several! depending on how many caterpillars you have) on a plate with a tomato stand with tulle wrapped around it. 

Why, you ask? Well, I did use the butterfly habitats that you can buy commercially but I had a hard time watering them and putting a new plant in. This way, I can move the plants when I need to. The only downside is that it can be messy; but the kids can see the caterpillars so much better.

I invite you to join my Spring in First Grade Pinterest Board for some more ideas and links to videos I've pinned! You can do that here

We also worked on some Spring poetry. I found this cute poem on Teachers Pay Teachers from Dilly Dabbles:

Click on the poem to download it from their store for free! 

We read the the poem and talked about each sentence line by line and how each represented the signs of Spring. Then I re-wrote the poem on sentence strips and scrambled the sentences. The kids had to put the poem back together and re-write it then draw a picture of what they thought the poem should look like. Easy and full of meaning! Sorry that I didn't take pics-- I forgot my phone that day! Here is a copy of the writing paper I used, though! Click on the paper to grab it for free! 

When we return, I will start another writing project with my kids. We will be reading Jaime Curtis' book: 

We will be letting some balloons go with a note attached:

This is an editable Power Point File. You will need the KG Font, Love Ya Like a Sister Solid  to make the text match. You can also just choose to print and handwrite the blank portions as well-- just be sure to delete the "insert text boxes" before you do! It's such a fun writing project. The kids write about where they think the balloon goes, who finds it, and what they do with the balloon. The possibilities are endless! I will post some pictures when we return! 

It's a Spring Cleaning Sale that I am participating in! It's your chance to stock up on some items for Spring or clean-out some of those wish-lists. Also, a chance for you to leave feedback on items you've already purchased to get some items for FREE or at reduced prices! 

My entire store will be 20% off! Click on the sale button above to take you to my store!

And look who else is on sale!

Have other Spring ideas? I'd love to hear them! Always looking for new ideas to incorporate into my classroom! Have a great rest of the week!