September 2013 - Miss Kindergarten

Build a Jack-o-lantern {classroom management idea}

I absolutely love thinking of ways to manage my students behaviors in the classroom. And I also love a good theme, so when they come together it makes me extra happy ;) Here's a fun little classroom management idea you can use during the fall months.

The idea was born when I found these super cute felt pieces at Michaels for 33 cents a piece! I picked up a black, orange, and lime green!

I made some pumpkin templates on paper first, cut them out and laid them over the felt pieces. Then I cut the felt, which was a little difficult to do! I freehanded the eyes, noes and mouth pieces. I decided not to cut brown, but you could make the stem brown if you wanted to. Also, one orange piece was enough for 2 pumpkins, just so you know ;)

I adhered two magnet strips onto the back of the pumpkins so I could stick them up on the whiteboard. I just had to be verrrry careful moving them around because the felt wanted to peel off of the magnet if I pulled too hard!

I stuck the little jack-o-lantern face pieces in my pumpkin pail that I picked up at Target. I would recommend one pail per table group so that you don't have to spend a lot of time picking through the pieces to build each jack-o-lantern.

When you see a table group that is following directions quickly, working hard, being respectful to each other, etc...choose one person at the table to pick a piece out of the pumpkin pail and add it to their pumpkin.

The cool thing about felt is that it sticks to itself!! 

The first table to build their whole jack-o-lantern can earn a reward :)

This would also be a fun incentive to do as a whole class!

If you're interested in the pumpkin templates, you can download them{here}.

Do you have any fun classroom management ideas to share? Link up to your blog post below!


Fall Fun!

Earlier this week I added a few more Print and Go Printables to my Fall pack! I realized when I put them together that I didn't add ANY scarecrows or Thanksgiving themed pages. What was I thinking?! So now it has 10 new pages :)

You can find all these printables and more in my Fall pack on TpT!

I also wanted to share with you a little update that I made to my Fall Word Cards. My sweet teammate {hi!} had a brilliant idea of adding high frequency words to the fall word cards so that our kids could practice building sentences! So I added a sheet of sight words into my pack that you can print out and laminate and use in a center.

I hope you all a fabulous first week of fall :)

#ABCsofTeaching {instagram party!}

When my bestie Michelle made me get an instagram, I obliged but really didn't use it. Then she started TeacherTalkTuesday and I was completly hooked! How fun it was to follow other teachers and get an instant snapshot into their classrooms! So when my friend Jessica asked me about doing a monthly instagram party, who was I to say no!? Now we are challenging you to the #ABCsofteaching!

If you don't already have an instagram account, consider joining! I bet you will love it!
Then follow the hashtags for each day of October and link on up! We put it in ABC order because we're OCD we thought it would help us all keep track better!

hosted by:

{click on our profile pictures to follow us on instagram!}

How Does It Work: 
Starting October 1st, all you have to do is add #ABCsofteaching and the hashtag of the day to your photo description and it's a done deal! 
How Do I See Others in the Challenge:
If you want to see what everyone else is posting for the day just click on the hashtag of the day or search it on instagram. If you'd like to stalk what everyone has been posting for the month just click on the #ABCsofteaching hashtag or search #ABCsofteaching on instagram.
I Missed a Day or Two: 
This photo challenge is all about getting to know each other and having fun while doing it. You can join all 26 days or pick and choose. Don't feel like you aren't allowed to join if you missed a few days! Catching this in the middle of the month??? JOIN NOW :) Don't wait. 

Argh Spider! {a mini unit}

One of my favorite stories to read in October is Aaaaarrgghh Spider! by Lydia Monks. It is such a cute story and my students really get a kick out of it!
If you haven't read this story yet, it's about a spider that decides he wants to be a pet spider. He shows a family all the things that make him a great pet, but all they see is a scary spider! And coming from somebody who truly dislikes spiders, I think it is a really cute story! Ha!

After I read this story to my class, we make a class graph and analyze whether we think spiders do or don't make good pets!
Then we use this graphic organizer to recall what the pet spider does in the story. Since this is for our pre-write we just write one or two words in each bubble instead of a whole sentence. For example we might write "feed itself" or "dance".

After that, we use what we brainstormed to complete our opinion writing prompt: "A spider makes a _____ pet because..."
The students write whether they think a spider would make a good or bad pet and then write why.
Of course we have to make a cute spider craft to go with our writing ;)

While I was browsing instagram over the weekend, my friend Marsha posted some adorable spider buttons that she found at Jo-Ann Crafts and Fabrics! I obviously had to go out and buy them!

Accompanied with the pumpkin ice cube tray and foam dice I found at the Dollar Tree, they made for the perfect math center!

To play, have your students roll the die and place that many spiders in the "ten frame". Then using a different color, figure out how many more spiders are needed to make a ten.

You can download this mini-unit in my TpT store for free!

I'm linking up with Ashley at The Teacher's Treasure Chest!

Clink on the links below to see more Fall Book Activities!


Halloween & October Games and Centers

I love Halloween! It is absolutely my most favorite holiday ever! My kiddos last year really enjoyed these centers! I've added 4 centers to my unit to incorporate more skills so if you already own these centers, you can go back and download the updates for free!

I've also created a non-Halloween unit since lots of my Facebook fans shared that they can't celebrate Halloween in their class! The skills are EXACTLY the same in both packs, but just doesn't include ghosts, witches, or monsters!

Here's what's included!
Pumpkin Patch Letter Match
This is a really fun small group game. Students spin the spinner and call out the letter they landed on, then they cover the letter on their board if they have it. 

Emergent Reader
My kiddos LOVE to read these little predictable texts. They get so excited to be able to read books! They are interactive too which makes me that much more engaging! They are practicing reading their sight words and color words.

Candy Corn Match
Practicing matching letters to each beginning sound.

Bobbing for Sight Word Apples
We "bob" for apples by choosing a card from the bowl and writing the sight word on the recording sheet. 

Stirring up Syllables 
{this activity is called Squirrely Syllables in October Games and Centers}
Practicing identifying words by 1, 2, and 3 syllables. They use little bingo daubers to stamp the correct number next to each picture.

Spooky Spin & Cover
{this activity is called Spider Spin & Cover in October Games and Centers}
Spin the spinner then cover the correct beginning sound.

Candy Count
Students roll the candy die and count how many pieces they rolled. Then they trace {or write} the correct number.

 Monster Measurement
{this activity is called Measurement Mania in October Games and Centers}
We are practicing non-standard measurement using monsters!

Ghost with the Most
{this activity is called The Great Pumpkin Race in October Games and Centers}
A fun two-player game to practice identifying more or less.

Gone Batty
A fun two-player game to practice addition to 10.

Sticky Ten Frames
The students pick a ten frame card and figure out how many more are needed to make a ten.

Potion Commotion
A fun two-player game to practice adding numbers to 12.

I found all the little felt bags and themed erasers in the Target Dollar spot and at the Dollar Tree. I *may* need an intervention...

You can find my Halloween Themed Games and Centers or October Games and Centers in my TpT store! They're on sale this weekend!



The First Week of School and Classroom Pictures

We did it! I survived the first week of school! I am so lucky to be working with the best partner teacher on the planet :) And we absolutely have the best class in the whole entire world! Here's a peek at our room and some first week of school fun!
We are so lucky to have such a nice sized room!

Here is one of our bulletin boards. We used "beachy" scrapbook paper and attached paper clips along the top so we can easily slide work in and out. I'm also thoroughly obsessed with the chevron/polka dot double layered border! All of my borders are from MPM School Supplies!

Our calendar wall:

This year we are going to count the days in school using base ten blocks. When I saw this idea on Pinterest all I could think was GENIUS!!!! I mean really, this makes so much more sense than counting with straws, and it ties directly to how we teach making 10's in math! I just threw some blocks in the pocket chart so you can see what I mean ;)

 Here's our word wall. We add words as we teach them!
 Another look at my class jobs!

We set up a supply station for the first day of school. This really helped organize the supplies that were donated to our classroom. It was so easy to put them away in the supply closet at the end of the day!
The super adorable labels are from Laura Martin's TpT store. Next year, I'm just going to pin the labels directly onto the bag...they weren't sturdy enough taped on like that!

And I made these sweet treats for my teammates to celebrate our first day!
We met our adorable class on Tuesday; they were so eager and ready to learn! I just love it!

We took our first day pictures with the cute little "K" {huge thanks to Michelle from Apples and ABCs for this adorable idea and tutorial!! As you can see, I pretty much copied her exactly ;)}

Then we read Miss Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten and then brainstormed some ideas on how we get ready for kindergarten! We completed this readers response and drew pictures to match.

  This will be the first page of our memory book!
We also worked together in groups to illustrate our classroom rules and they turned out SO cute but I 
forgot to snap a picture!
We read Brown Bear Brown Bear and made these super cute puppets. {Thanks Mrs. Ricca!} We practiced identifying colors and following step-by-step directions. We even sang some color songs! My class did such a fabulous job! 
We busted out some common core and used our puppets to retell the story to a partner. It was absolutely adorable!
During our math block we made our September calendars.

We used "4 corners, 8 corners" to make our apples {you can find more easy crafts here!} and practiced tracing numbers.
We also met some new friends!
  {clip art from Love Two Teach
borders from Teaching in a Small Town}
My class absolutely loved these! We learned each poem and talked about the characteristic of each shape. We even learned that Sandy Square has a booooyfriend ;)
{Download the shape poems here and ignore the fact that I clearly need more ink ;) I copied 2 to a page so that they printed out smaller than a regular sheet of paper.}
We also played this super fun shape game!
After we met our new friends and talked all about the shapes, we sat in a big circle {applying what we learned about circles!}. Then I walked around with a bunch of shapes in a bag and had each student pull out one shape. They told their neighbor what shape they pulled out {to practice identifying and to help their neighbor if they weren't sure} and then we played the Shape Game!
After everyone had a chance to stand up, we switched our shapes and played again. It was a lot of fun :)
This was definitely a long, but very fun-filled first week of school!