Monday, November 26, 2012

Liebster Nomination!

I am so excited to be nominated for the Liebster award by Adrienne at A Day in the Life of a Kindergartener!  I was beginning to think that no one was reading my blog... It is good to know at least one person is :)

Here are 11 random things about me:

1. I am a twin!
2. I am 6 feet tall  (and taller than my hubs!!!!!!)
3. I LOVE decorating for the holidays!
4. I played basketball in high school.
5. I was stung by a jellyfish when I went snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef.
6. I was the Maid of Honor in two weddings and rapped both speeches.
7. I LOVE listening to music.
8. My husband has written me 5 songs.
9. I have been a homeowner for 1 1/2 years and have LOVED every second of it!
10. I lived in FL for one year!
11. I have been to over 15 countries.

Here are the 11 questions from Adrienne:
1. What state do you teach in?

I teach in Michigan.  I previously taught in Florida. 

2. How many years have you been teaching?

This is my 6th year teaching,  5th in kindergarten.  I taught first grade for one year in Florida.

3. Which holiday is your favorite? Why?

Christmas is my favorite holiday because of all of the traditions surrounding Christmas.  Putting up decorations, putting up the tree, Christmas parties, opening up one gift on Christmas Eve, etc.

4. Do you sing with your students? If so, what song is your favorite?

Oh gosh!  Yes, I sing with my students, I am not good, but I do sing.  We have poetry folders.  We do one poem a week. I try to pick poems that you can sing because students pick up quicker when singing songs.

5.  Coffee or tea?

Neither.  I do not like coffee or tea.  I do LOVE hot chocolate.

6. Chocolate or vanilla?

Depends.  I love chocolate ice cream, but I do love vanilla cake with chocolate frosting... I guess I would have to say BOTH!

7. What is your favorite book to read to your students?

I have so many favorites.  I think my most favorite is the first book that I read to my students during student teaching: Enemy Pie by Derek Munson.

8. Tell me about your favorite vacation.
My favorite vacation that I have been on is going to Australia.  My sister was studying abroad there and I went to visit her.  

9. What do you like to do in your free time?

I love to do crafts and make other things to share with teachers!

10. What is your favorite Apple product?

My favorite Apple product is the iPad.  I love using my iPad and I also love having students use the iPads in the classroom.

11. What is your favorite snack?

My favorite snack is a vanilla cupcake with chocolate frosting.

Here are the 11 questions I have for the blogs I've nominated:

1. What grade do you teach?
2. What is your favorite grade to teach?
3. What is your favorite thing about blogging?
4. If you could only eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be?
5. What is your favorite song?
6. What is your favorite subject to teach?
7. What is your favorite TV show?
8. Where is your favorite place to travel?
9. What website do you visit the most?
10. If you could have a gift card to anywhere, where would it be to?
11. What is your most favorite thing in the whole world?

Here are the blogs I've nominated:

1. A Neighborhood Kindergarten
2. Kelly and Kim's Kindergarten
3. Play to Learn in Kindergarten
4. Kick Starting Kindergarten

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Spin a Number FREEBIE

Working on one-to-one with your students and identifying numbers?  This would be a great math game to have your students play.  This FREEBIE is a game board with two spinners, both with numbers 1-8.  One spinner is just the numbers, the other has the numbers with dots too (just is case your little ones cannot identify numbers 1-8).  All you need is a pencil, paper clip and game pieces (teddy bears, counters, erasers, etc.).  If you would like a copy, click HERE!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Shape Graphing FREEBIE

My students have fallen in love with graphing!  As mathematicians, we have been walking around the school looking for each shape: square, rectangle, triangle, and circle.  I created some graphing sheets for students to use when they "clipboard cruise" to find shapes in the classroom, hallway, on recess and outside.  Click here if you would like to download a copy for FREE :)

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Math Journals

I absolutely love using math journals in kindergarten! I think it is such an essential skill for students to be able to record their thinking. I have the students do math journals as part of their rotations for math workshop. It is a great way to differentiate instruction. I can give each math group different math prompts that are at their level. Before doing journal prompts, there are a series of activities that I have students to complete so they have things to reference when they are working in their journals. Some things that I include are a 100s chart, numbers, ten frames, number words, tally marks, coins and their values, shapes, etc. I also include vocabulary. I just created a packet of math vocabulary that kindergartners need to understand. It is aligned with the Common Core Standards. The packet contains the words: sort, pattern, triangle, rectangle, square, circle, addition and subtraction. Each word has a graphic organizer with a definition, illustration, example and non-example. Check it out here!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Literacy/Math Centers FREEBIE

My students have been having great math dialogue involving graphing!  We just recently created a birthday graph of the birthdays in our class and we graph the weather daily.  I created "Letters Around the Room" graphs, as well as "Numbers Around the Room" graphs. I have students grab a clipboard and be "Clipboard Cruisers" around the room to graph the letters that they find.  Before the center is over, I have students talk about their graphs, what they notice about them, which letter/number has the most, which letter/number has the least.  Click here to go to my TpT store to download the graphs for FREE! 

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Common Core MATH

Is anyone else wondering how to help their little ones understand the 8 Math Practices that align with the Common Core Standards?  One way that I have found is to talk to students and refer to them as mathematicians!  We also talk about the things that mathematicians do:

  • Talk about math
  • Explain their thinking
  • Make predictions
  • Work together
  • Compare
  • Make mistakes
  • Record their ideas
  • Change their ideas
  • Check their work
  • Look for challenges

I have created and uploaded a document on Teachers Pay Teachers that address the things that mathematicians do.  If you would like to check it out, click here!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Reader's Workshop

It is our third week of school and Reader's Workshop has already started.  In the beginning of the year we talk about Readers Building Good Reading Habits.  Our first unit is about building reading identities and helps our kindergartners to understand that everyone is a reader.  I have them write/draw about their favorite place to read.  I hope you enjoy this FREEBIE!  Please post a comment if you download!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Beginning of the year pictures and end of the year pictures!

I have been wanting to make my way into the blogging world, and what better way to do it than a FREEBIE!  I made this so that students can draw a picture of themselves at the beginning of kindergarten and then at the end of kindergarten.  It is amazing to see the progress that they make over the course of a year.  I add this to students' kindergarten portfolios!  If you would like a copy click here for the beginning of the year document and here for the end of the year document!  ENJOY!

Kindergarten Common Core

Anyone wondering how they are going to integrate the new Common Core Standards, well look no further...   There is now a Kindergarten Common Core Workbook.  It has worksheets, activities and posters that align with the Common Core Standards.  It includes both Math and Language Arts.  This is an amazing resource for teachers, parents and administrators!