Monday, October 17, 2016

Contraction Magic!

Happy Monday blog friends! This week we are learning all about contractions in room 4. I made our lesson come to life today by dressing up as a magician. The kids LOVED it! Isn't learning soooo much fun?? :)

I got the cape, wand, and mustaches at the Dollar Tree and the hat at Party City.
After discussing what contractions are watching a Flocabulary video and Brainpop, Jr video. We dived into the lesson. I had some special helpers come up and read two words to the class. They then dropped them into my magician hat, borrowed my magic wand, and let the magic happen!
My helper then went to the board and wrote what the contraction for the two words was and turned and told the class what they wrote. 

Then they got to try it out by making these Contraction Magic books. Their pencils became magic wands to help them with this little task! ;)

And we finished up with a little craftivity! Students were given two words and they put them (pasted) them in their hats, took the magic wand, and poof! We had a contraction just like that! 

These activities are in a new little pack of mine called Contraction Magic! If your interested you can click the pic below to find out all about this fun little pack.

Have a fun, magical week blog friends! :)

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

We love Flocabulary!! Plus a BIG GIVEAWAY!!

Happy fall break friends! I'm popping in today to share with you about a wonderful resource that I started using last winter called Flocabulary. My firsties love Flocabulary and I think you and your students would too!

What is Flocabulary?

  • Flocabulary is a web-based learning program for all grades and subjects that uses educational hip-hop music to engage students and increase achievement.
  • Teachers in more than 60,000 schools have used Flocabulary’s standards-based videos, instructional activities and formative assessments to develop core literacy skills and supplement instruction across the curriculum.
  • Flocabulary offers more than 750 instructional units to support instruction in math, science, social studies, ELA, vocabulary, current events and life skills, with new content every week.
  • Flocabulary offers a deep instructional sequence that teaches standards-aligned skills and content while helping students develop literacy skills across the academic curriculum. Flocabulary support teachers in all content areas and help teach and assess reading and writing skills through the recently-released instructional tools we offer like Read & Respond and Lyric Lab.
  • Engagement has long been the “bread and butter” of Flocabulary—their roots are in catchy and accurate educational hip-hop videos. Flocabulary’s videos create authentic engagement, their complementary instructional tools provide new opportunities for learning, and their rhyme writing tool and Lyric Lab empowers students to get the creative juices flowing with their own educational raps.

Flocabulary has added lots of new content recently. One of my most favorite new additions is the contractions video for grades K-3. Next week we will be learning all about contractions and I plan to use this video and the activities on the Flocabulary site that go with it to introduce our contractions unit.

In this video featuring a funny magician and an emcee who’s a grammar whiz, students learn to identify and form common contractions. The video explains how to form contractions with “not,” “will,” “am,” “are,” “is,” “have,” “has,” “had” and “would” by replacing letters with an apostrophe. Watch it now.

This video, as well as the others on the site has a printable activity perfect for an exit ticket, quick review and fill in the blanks activity that can be projected on your smartboard. There are also lyric notes and the new lyric lab where students can create their own rhyme about contractions.

I plan on making these Contraction Magic hats with my firsties next week after we watch the Flocabulary video. These will tie in perfectly with the theme! :) 
For more Contraction Magic fun check out my newest little unit in my tpt store.

Would you like to win a FREE one year subscription to Flocabulary??? I'm giving THREE lucky blog readers a ONE YEAR subscription to Flocabulary so you and your students can enjoy this amazing site as much as I do! And that's not all... everyone is a winner... just for entering you will be emailed a free 45 day trail membership. So even if you don't win, you can still get 45 days of FREE access. So what are you waiting for? Enter below! Contest ends on October 16th, so act fast!

Monday, September 26, 2016

Apple Week!

Last week we were all about apples and Johnny Appleseed in room 4. This is one of my absolute favorite units to do each year. 

We learned about Johnny Appleseed and made these cutie Johnny Appleseed crafts.

Students each brought in 2-3 apples and we used them for our apple investigations. We had so much fun measuring, weighing, and tasting our apples for the investigations.

We read a bunch of books about apples and completed a little KWL chart.
We also learned the life cycle of an apple and the parts of an apple. We made this little labeling craftivity to show off what we learned. One sweetie was munching on a apple today and pointed out the parts on their real apple. Melt my heart!

We did a taste test and the yellow apple was the favorite this year!

On Friday we ended our apple week by making some applesauce in the Crockpot. It was sooo good! Not to mention my room smelled heavenly all day! After lunch when my kids came back to the classroom they could really start smelling it, and were so excited they were saying I think it's ready for us to eat now. :) 

We also made an apple inspired snazzy trees! This is super simple... it's a sugar cookie with frosting and M&M's and a graham cracker for the trunk.

Well friends that was our apple week! Can't wait to do it all over again next year! :)

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Classroom Reveal 2016-2017

Hey, hey! I'm popping in today for a classroom reveal post. This year I decided to take my jungle themed classroom to a new direction. When I seen the new Woodland Friends line from Creative Teaching Press, I just knew that had to my new theme! Everything from this line is so cute, and it just makes my heart smile looking at those cute little woodland friends. Since I was changing my theme, I decided it would be a great time to paint my room. I love the new color, and it matches everything perfectly!

Up first on the tour, is my classroom library! I love how this little area turned out! I hang reading focus posters for the week on the bulletin board and use the large pencil pocket chart for our Guiding Readers reading activities. The computers are used for Accelerated Reader. Students can read a book and then hop on a computer to take a test. 
Library Book Bins are from Target Dollar Spot
Fox Rug is from Wal-Mart
Stools are from IKEA
Library Book Bin labels are from Missing Tooth Grins
Woodland Friends Border is from Creative Teaching Press
Reading Strategy Posters from Wild about Firsties

Next up, is my math focus wall. This is wear you will find all things math.... standards, calendar, days of school, clock, shapes, and more!
Woodland Friends Autumn Leaves Border from Creative Teaching Press
Strategies for Math Poster is from Really Good Stuff
Days in School is from Wild about Firsties
Go Math Focus Posters
Apple Felt Calendar from Target Dollar Spot
Pacon Fadeless Paper
Mini Shape Posters are from Cara Carroll
Bean Bags from Old Time Pottery

Next up, is my rug and Smartboard area. This is where a lot of teaching takes place. We love sitting on the rug! I'm trying hard to take good care of it and make it last as many years as possible... so I have a no shoes on the rug policy! :)
Rug from Lakeshore Learning

I love my little writing area! I store the writing papers in the large library pockets below the bulletin board. Students can choose what they want to write and then grab the corresponding paper. I love those library pockets so much!! They hold regular sized paper perfectly! Next door to the board is an area to display work and my Bubble Gum Words display.
Mammut Table is from IKEA
Mammut Stools are from IKEA (my mom made the cute little cushions.. I love them!)
Woodland Friends Extra Large Library Pockets from Creative Teaching Press
Woodland Friends Magnetic Decor Strips from Creative Teaching Press (I used this to jazz up my magnetic white board chart stand) 
Woodland Friends Toadstools Border from Creative Teaching Press
Writing Station Cards from Deedee Wills
Woodland Friends Peek-Overs Bulletin Board from Creative Teaching Press

I group my students in groups of four. Each group is a different color and I have color coordinated them. I have found that it makes things so much easier to color coordinate my groups! And I like the colors! :) The cubbies against the wall are where the students put their backpacks, coats, and lunch boxes. The extra spaces are I use to store teacher books and materials. I collect Kohl's Cares books and stuffed animals and you can find some of my collection hanging out on top.
Chair Pockets are from Seat Sack
Book Shelves are from Wal-Mart
Plastic Paper Bins from Target Dollar Spot
Caddies from Oriental Trading
Burlap Alphabet from Wild About Firsties

small group area

clip chart by me! :)

My students learn "Bubble Gum Words" (the Fry words) and earn bubble gum along the way! Each list is color coordinated, and as students master a sheet they earn a piece of bubble gum and then move on to the next sheet. Each student has a gum ball machine and as they master a sheet they color in a gum ball.

Center station where all of the station tubs and Kindles are stored. Next door is the listening station. Students sit in the scoop rockers when they are at the listening station. At the bottom of the shelf in the tubs I store the listening station books & CD's in a ziplock bag. I put corresponding recording sheets inside the ziplock bag with the book. It's hard to see, but near the door is my birthday display.
Listening Station from Lakeshore Learning
Scoop Rockers from Wal-Mart
Woodland Friends Pup Tents Cut-Outs from Creative Teaching Press
Woodland Friends Student Incentive Charts from Creative Teaching Press

Several years ago, I started doing a student of the week. This student is featured in the hallway with a an all about me poster and they are the line leader and special helper for the whole week. We also do other things throughout the week to make him/her feel extra special. This summer when I decided to change my theme I racked my brain trying to think of what to call it. And one day it hit me...Camper of the Week! :) Me a couple of my teacher friends worked on this one day this summer and I'm in love with how it turned out. I hang the poster on the door of the camper. The picture was taken before a hitch was added. So just imagine it with a hitch! ;)
Welcome Felt Banner from Target Dollar Spot
Woodland Friends Toadstools Cut-Outs from Creative Teaching Press
Woodland Friends Jumbo 10" Cut-Outs from Creative Teaching Press
Chevron Uppercase 2" Letters (on sign) from Creative Teaching Press

Well sweet friends, I hope you have enjoyed the tour of my little classroom! I sure do love my little home away from home! :)

Have a great rest of the week! 

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Oriental Trading and Classroom Wish Lists

Hi there! I wanted to pop in today to share with you some goodies that I'm currently loving/using from one of my favorite companies, Oriental Trading. Did you know they now have a wish list feature that is perfect to share with parents??

In my classroom I use classroom money called "Cricket Tickets" to reward positive choices, good behavior, and hard work. Students can in turn cash those tickets in on Friday to buy various things. One thing they can cash in for is goodies from the treasure box! I recently got this treasure box from Oriental Trading and my kids are going nuts over the goodies that it is filled with.
Another thing that students can purchase with their tickets is candy from the candy box. Oriental Trading is a great place to get all things candy. They have a huge variety to choose from and at great prices!

Next up, are these super cute little camping/forest themed treat boxes I found from Oriental Trading. Since I changed my theme this year I thought these would be perfect to put their Birthday goodies in. I fill them with candy, a pencil, and a bookmark and cootie catcher from Creative Teaching Press. 

Oriental Trading also has a great selection of Teacher resources. I found these amazing dry erase 120 boards. On one side the numbers are listed and on the other side it is empty. Perfect for students to use to write their numbers to 120, yet not having to use paper! It's a win, win! :)

Give students a transparent counter and these are an excellent resource to use when adding/subtracting 1 and 10.

Oriental Trading now has a new wish list feature!! Go to their website and create an account. Then begin browsing around the site and add all of the incredible items that you love or would like to use in your classroom to your wish list. Share the link to your wish list with parents your weekly newsletter. This allows parents who want to help out with classroom supplies, but aren't sure what you could use. 

Here are a few of the items on my long wish list...
These Color Your Own Bags are perfect for holiday parties! Students can decorate/color these and then fill them full with all of their goodies and treats.

I also love these All About Me Posters for my Camper of the Week (student of the week).

You can check out my wish list HERE and see all the other great items that I have my eye on for my classroom.

So what are you waiting for?? Head over to Oriental Trading and start making out your wish list and share them with parents! :)