Monday, August 19, 2013

First Day of Fun!

Today was the first day with my new class of eager Kindergarten students.  It was a great day!  I have 17 kiddos in my classroom, but more registered today, so I will probably gain 1 or 2 new kids.  We had a busy first day!  It was hard to get the parents to say goodbye, and some cried (which brought tears to my eyes), but after the parents went on their way, we started a great day.  I always start the year off with a Chicka Chicka Boom Boom unit.  The kids love that book and I do too.  We started to illustrate the first page of our wordless story book. That is all I got too, lol.  After talking about the rules and procedures, we visited the cafeteria and Music class.  At that point our morning was done.  We spent the time before lunch passing out our crayon boxes and crayons.  Of course we had to have the talk about being the crayon boxes mommy or daddy and making sure it was quiet and well behaved.  We don't want to loose any of our baby crayons and we don't want them to get loud and crazy or they have to go to the crayon box calm down time out!  My favorite part is when the kids tell their crayons and crayon boxes to make smart choices.  They're so serious and only in Kindergarten will they take that seriously! Haha!  We made it through lunch and survived recess.  We had just enough time to grade our binders, receive our Welcome award, and then head to the bus ramp.  Where did the day go?!?!  It was a great day and the kids seem excited to be at school.  I think we are going to have a great year if it is anything like today!  I hope the rest of you are going to have a great year as well.

Here are a few pictures of the classroom at the end of the day.  I forgot to take them before school started.  I was very surprised at how nice the room looked after the first day.  Like one of my co-workers said, "We're still in the honeymoon phase... just wait!" Haha!  Even if it gets messy, that is ok because that is a part of Kindergarten!

Here is my view from the front door!  Can you tell I love pink!?!?
 View from the front door:
 Math work station board... I will be starting to introduce those next week.
 View of the back
 Color tree:
View from my desk 

This is how I collect the school supplies at Meet and Greet and on the first day of school.  I set out tubs on my back counter, label them with supplies from our list, and have the parents and kids sort them when they bring them to class.  It makes it so much easier to put away all of the supplies and saves me a ton of time.  I have them keep their binder, scissors, headphones, and pencil box at their desk so I can label them.  Everything else goes on the back counter.  I was actually very lucky this year with the amount of supplies that were brought to the classroom.  Woo-hoo!

Have a wonderful school year!  Good luck and Have fun!


Monday, April 22, 2013

Meet and Greet Ideas and Input Needed!

Only other teachers understand that it is April and we have already started thinking about next year!

I am so excited!  Next year our school has decided to do our Kindergarten Meet and Greet a different way.  We usually have meet and greet for all grades K-5 at the same time.  However, it can get crazy, especially when you have some parents who are bringing their child to school for the first time and have a million questions.  It is hard to give all 18 families your attention when the meet and greet is 2 hours long and you have people coming in and out at different times.

I spoke with our fabulous principal today and presented the idea of doing a special night just for Kindergarten families.  We would have everyone meet as a group in the cafeteria for 20-30 minutes and go over school-wide items.  We would talk about procedures, grade-level expectations (how it has changed drastically over the past few years), bus ramp, car pick-up, transportation changes, lunchroom items, etc.  Then we would have the parents come down to their child's Kg teacher's room for the last 20-30 minutes.  In the room we could tell the parents about ourselves, give them our classroom discipline plans and expectations, and help them with all of the paperwork they fill out at the beginning of the year.  Luckily, we worked out a few details and scheduled our first Kindergarten night for next school year!

That being said, I am full of questions.

Does anyone's school do Kindergarten meet and greet this way?

Do you allow the children to attend at night?

What do you call your Kindergarten night?  I want something cute to put on the fliers/letters to go home.

Any fun ideas to get the parents to come or other things to do at the meet and greet night?

 Please help provide some insight if you can!  I greatly appreciate any help or advice you can share.


Monday, April 1, 2013

TPT Advice Needed!!!!

I hope everyone had a fabulous Monday.  Our grade level got to participate in our first day of lesson study.  It is a great experience.  This is the fourth time we have done a lesson study and I feel that we have learned a lot.  It is a wonderful way to share ideas, plan together, and discuss student strengths and weaknesses.  Tomorrow one of our teachers will get to teach the lesson we wrote today.  I know it will be an awesome day and I am looking forward to it.  I already had my turn teaching a lesson for everyone, so I get to just relax and enjoy observing.

Now, the real reason I am writing this post is for help!  I need help/advice from all my blog friends.  I recently started a TPT store, and by recently I mean tonight!  Haha!  I have made so many different resources throughout my teaching career.  One of my colleagues suggested that I should start uploading some of my creations.  I figured, why not?!?!  I uploaded 4 files tonight.  I have many more in the works, but wanted so advice from everyone.  If you have a TPT store, what do you do to get your product noticed?  Any helpful hints or ideas would be appreciated!  I'm new in this area!

Also, if you guys would please help me by pinning some of my products, or download the free product and leave me feedback, I would greatly appreciate it.  Feel free to follow my store as well.

Keep the advice and hints coming!  I look forward to hearing what my experienced blog friends have to say!

Have a great week!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

March recap and door decor!

I know Easter is quickly approaching.  Our Spring Break was last week and we only get 4 days with the kids to do Easter activities.  I hate that it is such a short amount of time this year, but I really enjoyed the break!  The first two weeks of March our school celebrated literacy with Dr.Seuss.  We had a door decorating contest, family literacy night, and dress-up days.  It was a ton of fun.  I wanted to share some of the awesome doors that our Kindergarten hallway created!

I worked with the teacher across the hall.  We love decorating our doors and the wall between our classrooms.  In the past we have made an Indian village, a Gingerbread house, Chick Chicka Boom Boom trees, a huge Magic Tree House display, and other seasonal or literary themes.  We ave an awesome idea planned for the beginning of next school year.  We wanted to bring my favorite book to life by creating a huge Yertle the Turtle display! The kids made Yertle's and turtles and labeled everything Yertle ruled.  
Here it is:

 The turtle stack was 3-D and Yertle was falling off the stack!

 Here are the doors covered with everything Yertle ruled (birds, bees, cat, trees, air, house, blueberry bush, donkey, cow, butterflies mud puddle)!

It was a lot of fun and looked great.  The kids loved helping to create the wall.  Here are a few of the other Kindergarten doors!   

Hop on Pop.  The kids faces are on the little characters and the bubbles have rhyming words in them.

Here is the Lorax- The kids made a little Lorax and wrote they speak for the trees on the sign.

There's a Wocket in my Pocket

 If I Ran the Zoo-


Daisy Head Maizy

It's good to be back!

 I have missed the blogging world.  My life has been a whirlwind the past 9 months, but it is finally settling down and getting back to normal.  Quick recap- last time I blogged we had found out we were pregnant with a sweet little boy.  At one of our ultrasounds they were concerned with his development, so we started seeing a high risk doctor.  I went to the doctor almost every week until October.  In October they had to do an emergency c-section, not because anything was wrong with Grayson, but because there were complications with me.  The whole time we were worried for our little man, we never imagined there would be anything wrong with me.  I ended up having a brain hemorrhage (how often does that happen from pregnancy?!?!) and was in the hospital for a week.  Long story short my sweet little guy was a perfect healthy baby and I am recovering just fine and praying that never happens again!  So, I had to take off work from October through February.  It was a long time away from my kiddos, but I had an amazing time bonding at home with my sweet boy and getting much needed rest.  

Here is my sweet little Grayson when he was 1 day old.  He is my little miracle.  

Here is my little guy now at 5 months old.

It feels good to be in a normal routine and back at school!  I can't wait to start posting about what we are doing in the classroom.  It has been a difficult transition back.  It is like the beginning of the year again, but worse because the kids have some bad habits that are hard to break.  But they are sweet children and are trying hard to learn.  I hope the last 2 months of school will be full of fun and learning!