Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Gingerbread & Grinch Days

This is my favorite time of the school year! I love the month of December with all the joyful things about Christmas. Like most of you, I too have been very busy this month prepping everything that goes into our themes… Santa, reindeer, stockings, gingerbread men, the Grinch!
This week, my students have been working very hard learning about The Gingerbread Man and other various versions of the book. I’ll be back tomorrow with lots of Gingerbread stuff. In the meantime, grab the free gingerbread man sight words HERE.
Ginger SW Pic

Also, we are getting read to enjoy “Grinch Day.” I’ll be posting more about this soon. Meantime, pick up your free  editable invitation HERE.
Grinch Invitation PIC
Have a great day!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Supply Our Schools

A few weeks back you saw I wrote about receiving funds from the Coach foundation and talked about how you can register for such funding as well.  Here is another organization who helps fund teachers and students with supplies.  It’s been a wonderful experience for me to be so blessed with such donations! I hope you will be too.  Now go sign up!
supply our schools pic
Best of luck!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Thematic Books

Hi all!
Just recently, I added a new page… Books by Theme. If you’re looking for thematic books to read aloud to your students, check out this new page.
Books thematically listed
This page will be updated bi-monthly if you’re looking for upcoming themes to study. Feel free to copy the carousels or click to purchase through Happy looking and shopping.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Adopt A Classroom

In the last post, I wrote and placed pictures of FREE items I received from the Coach Foundation, a charitable arm of Coach stores. I found these FREE funds after registering my class at
adopt a classroom symbol
It’s as easy as pie! Just register, write about what you need and how donations would help your students succeed, and then patiently wait for your donor.
You can also send flyers and emails to friends, family, and businesses in your local area. For instance, I sent emails to local large businesses who donate time and money to our school district. In the picture below, there are ways you can post to Facebook, send emails, print flyers, and even add a link to your web page.
adopt a classroom fundraising tools
I copied the code and pasted a direct link on my class website for parents to donate to my account at adopt a classroom as well.
adopt a classroom donation widget
It’s been a great tool for me!
If you found this information helpful, please join up as a member of my blog! Your support would be greatly appreciated.
And, check out my Pinterest page too. You’re sure to like it.
Thanks again!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Technology for the Classroom

Today I have a great BIG thanks to shout out! I am so appreciative to the COACH Foundation. Just Friday I learned Coach donated $500 to my classroom for additional technology! Here are the items I was able to select:
RM Epad
This slate and stylus is amazing and was made with the classroom and students in mind! To see how it works click on the picture and watch the video!
Hot Dots
We’ve all heard of Hot Dots! A fun educational way to support student learning without using pencil and paper! Thanks to Coach Foundation, my students will be having fun learning the alphabet, phonics, numbers, counting, and shapes!
Thanks COACH Foundation for supporting kids with generous donations!
If you found this information interesting and would like to know how to receive generous funding too, please consider joining my blog as a member and following along on Pinterest!
I’ll be back with the answer to helpful funding THIS week!!! Be sure to check back.
to purchase, click below.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Kitchen Menus & Writing

My Kindergarteners love playing in the kitchen dramatic play center. And, although I believe it is appropriate for them to focus on playing together, sharing, and their language, it’s also important to make this station common core friendly.
It’s not often my students get to play in this station but when they do they are responsible for the following:
1.  Set the table for 2 (or 3, 4, 5, or 6 – depending upon the number we’re working on)
2.  Role play – Students choose what role they would like to play such as chef, dishwasher, customers, waiter/waitress, cashier, hostess.
3.  Share – Sharing is important so students know they need to take on a different role each time they are learning at this station.
4.  Organize – Students also know while they are playing and when they clean up where all the items are to be placed. I took pictures of the items in my play kitchen and then taped them to the areas where the items are to be placed.
5.  Menus – Last of all, students have menus to play with. You can download them today for FREE. The “customers” read the menu with the words printed on it. AND, the waiter/waitresses write on the menus with the missing beginning sounds or missing words. Just laminate and you’re ready to go!
Click on EACH picture below to get your FREE menus. 
kitchen menu
kitchen menu order pad 1
kitchen menu order pad 2
Hope you enjoy these menus and especially your students too!
I hope you are enjoying all of the FREE downloads I post. If so, please look in the sidebar and become a member of my blog and follow my Pinterest pages.
There’s lots more FREE items to come! Thank you!

Teaching Numbers 1 to 5

With the new Common Core Math Standards, our Kindergarten class is now focusing on numbers one to five the first trimester. Here are a few anchor charts we made each week we studied a new number. We color coded them so all the concepts on each one are the same color. The students love them!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Going Batty!

This week we are continuing to work on bats that we began last week. Here are a few free items you may wish to download. Just click on EACH picture.
bat circle map
1.  Vocabulary cards with pictures. I placed Velcro on the circle map above with the matching Velcro on the vocabulary word. Students can now use this as a portable word wall or to sort and discuss.
2. Bats Are Sleeping Song
3. This Old Bat Song
I’ll be posting more tomorrow!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Pumpkin Freebies

Grab theses freebies today by clicking on the pictures below.
Beginning Sounds & Sequence of Lifecycle
pumpkin lifecycle
Pumpkin Vocabulary
pumpkin vocab
Hope you find these helpful.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium

Have you heard of Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium, also known as SBAC?



“The Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (Smarter Balanced) is a state-led consortium working to develop next-generation assessments that accurately measure student progress toward college- and career-readiness. Smarter Balanced is one of two multistate consortia awarded funding from the U.S. Department of Education in 2010 to develop an assessment system aligned to the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) by the 2014-15 school year.” (SBAC)

“Smarter Balanced member states educate more than 19 million of the nation’s public K to 12 students. These states share a commitment to developing a next-generation assessment system aligned to the Common Core State Standards that provide educators with meaningful feedback and actionable data.” (SBAC)
These states include Alabama, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
And although Kindergarten and first grades will not be taking these tests, we should be preparing our students ahead of time using these new formats that will be implemented in all other formal assessment grades.
Our district has done just that in the area of language arts writing!
Teachers from every grade level collaborated on this project. First, we were educated all about SBAC. Next, we developed the same formats for every grade level as SBAC for our trimester benchmark assessments. Then, we followed our adopted curriculum, back mapped the school year, scoured over the common core standards, and finally came up with new trimester benchmark assessments, rubrics, and revising / editing checklists for grades K through eighth.
These new benchmarks cover the three writing genres: informative / explanatory, narrative, and opinion. Adopted materials used were science texts for informative / explanatory writing, language arts for narrative writing, and social studies texts for opinion pieces.
k science  treasures te
It has been extremely time consuming and will continue to be as we are still trying to perfect our art. However, it will surely be worthy of the efforts as our students will be better prepared for the 2014-15 school year.
Below, you will be able to download an editable version of a revising / editing picture checklist for Kindergarten in 2 writing genres:  informative and narrative. I plan to edit the “topic” pictures each time we write upon a new topic. In addition, since conventions will change over the school year, it will be easy to change this picture each trimester too.
To receive your 2 free downloadable AND editable documents, please click on EACH picture below! These are separate documents.
Informative Writing Document:
informative checklist
Narrative Writing Document:
narrative checklist
I hope you find these helpful! AND, they are editable so you can change them the way you like.
If you found this post and printable resource helpful, please leave a comment! AND, to receive more FREE items about SBAC, please join up as a member. THANKS!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Happy Birthday Johnny Appleseed!

Are you celebrating Johnny Appleseed’s birthday tomorrow with your students? Click HERE or on the picture below to receive your free Johnny Appleseed song.

johnny appleseed song

After teaching students to sing this song, I glue it to the back of a craftivity. When the craft item is sent home, students have a song they can proudly sing to their parents.

Hope your students enjoy singing this song as much as mine do!


If you enjoy this song, please leave a comment or send an email. Thanks!!!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Behavior Management Tips

Beginning the school year can be difficult trying to get students to conform to any teacher’s classroom expectations. Each year teachers, administrators, resource educators, volunteers and parents complement my students on their exemplary behavior.

Below are just a few of the strategies I use. Check back for more as the year goes on!


class competition

This strategy is very simple to use. During whole group direct instruction, when the students follow directions, sit correctly, raise quiet hands, and participate in our discussion they receive points for each time they do these things.

The first month of school there is a daily reward. Once students understand, this becomes a weekly reward. Rewards are such items as: additional recess, extra computer time, another dramatic play station rotation, books on DVD (Scholastic), special seating, etc.

I take the time to brainstorm ideas each year with my students to be sure to reward them with items they want (within reason of course).


group competition

In addition to the above strategy, this is quite simple to use as well. During independent station learning, students once again receive points for each time they follow directions, work cooperatively, share, complete their independent station work, and work as a kid of character (Character Counts).

Students also lose points for not following the above information. Therefore, they are in competition against each group but also learn to be a kid of character in their own small groups.

The first month of school students in the winning group receives a prize daily. After getting into the routine, this reward becomes a weekly reward. Prizes are usually donated or purchased. Click the picture below to purchase various toy assortments on page 10.

prize assortment

You can purchase these inexpensively at The Kinder Cupboard on page 10.


behavior management chart

I’m sure you have seen the above behavior chart floating around on Pinterest. Every one I have seen is very cute and with great intentions. However, as a Kinder teacher, 7 items to recall is a bit much. Research has proven many times over that ADULTS can only recall 3 to 7 items at any time. So, how do we expect our Kinders to remember 7 stages of behavior?

I subscribe to the picture below. Super easy for Kinders to look at because it is a picture. In addition, the background corresponds to their behavior (green=happy face, yellow=slow down and think about your behavior sad face, and red=problem behavior crying face)

individual behavior

Most days, I never move a name from the green great day face! Also, to help make this easy to manage, I write the girl’s names in red on the clothespin and the boy’s names in blue. Additionally, I place the boys on the left and the girls on the right, both in alphabetical order. It’s makes it easy for me to move AND once we get past Christmas, students can easily find their own names if they do need to move their clothespin.

Students who do not move their name from the green happy face get a happy face stamp on the back of their hand at the end of the day. They get excited to show their parents what kind of day they had AND it’s a great way for me to communicate student behavior with the parents each day! To purchase various happy face self stampers click the link here or click the picture below. Find on page 10 of the link.

happy face stamp


star student certificate    168056_STAR_STUDENT_PPSTK

Everyday I hand out 1 star student certificate for the student who I believe was the best behaved and / or performed their best on their work. Also, I give lots of stickers! If you’d like to purchase these, click the pictures above or here. Find on page 11 of this link.

Hope you found this post helpful!


I would love to know how you manage your students behavior! Please leave a comment or send me an email at:

Sunday, September 9, 2012



blog hop must have monday

What items do you absolutely LOVE having in your classroom? Here are some of mine.


I love them all!



Did I say coca-cola? So refreshing & definitely addicting! AND ONLY $1.00 at McDonalds!!!



If you don’t have these, go get them now!

favorite heidisongs


What primary teacher doesn’t own these?



These are my favorites…



I love using these acrylic picture frames! I use them for all sorts of things like framing exemplary student work, work samples, directions, etc.

picture frames


Be sure to hop on over to Blog Hoppin' to link up with us and share your must haves! Just click the Blog Hopper button below…


I would love to know your must haves… Please leave a comment or send me an email!