Sunday, July 31, 2011


I saw a great memory activity by Ms. Bell over at A Place Called Kindergarten . I'm thinking that it will be a good center activity for the beginning of school, especially during the first couple of weeks when we're practicing center routines, routines, routines. Head on over to her blog to see how it works.

I'll also use play dough, attribute shapes, cubes, books, and other manipulatives in centers for the first few weeks, just until we've learned the center routines and behaviors. Once these are mastered and all students are assessed, then I can get into the nitty gritty of small group instruction and reading groups.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Open House

Dear Parents,

Open House will be here soon and you'll be able to see our room. There will be many forms to complete: transportation home, info card (to keep in our room), office info sheet, internet user/consent agreement, medical info card (for the nurse), and a couple of others. For my new students, I will have the legos out and the tables covered with paper for coloring pictures while you have a chance to complete the forms. We'll also touch on a few procedures that include you. Until then, below is a copy of the letter that will be in your Open House packet.

Open House Letter

Please email me with any questions you have.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Guess where I get to go today...

It's not school! It's a fab place and one where they have school items not for sale by Target, Walmart, or even the School Box! I'm going here...
I'm so excited!!! It's always a trip and I'm even taking my 3 children with me...I'll update the great finds that I get as soon as I get back!

I didn't spend too much today...woohoo! I was beside myself with anxiety because I had a difficult time deciding what to keep and what to put back. In the end, I made all the right decisions and can live without the items I didn't purchase.
There were two free items: the reusable bag and the teacher plan book. The All About Numbers chart was the big ticket item that I purchased, but it was 20% off as well as the blue and red caddy that I'll be using to keep my small group instructional items in. I HAD to get the dinosaur pointer (thinking about the boys) because I didn't have one:) The paw pencils with the paw erasers will be used as pointers during small group reading instruction. There are magnets, super kid stickers (for my sight word kings and queens), a white grid poster to record students' sight word progress (they color it based on the lists they master), slinky's (for blending instruction), an apple board eraser, and behavior incentives for super star students who stay on green for the entire week.

I also made sure to get 20 boxes of crayons and glue sticks to get my kiddos started off on the first day of school:) Nothing better than brand new crayons!!!

Whew! Okay, I believe I have completed my back to school shopping for my classroom!

Thursday, July 28, 2011


I'm already giving some thought to our homework. I usually prepare a monthly calendar based on skills we are learning. I also differentiate the calendars based on student need. I am looking to revamp it and am looking to GA's performance standards to do so. 
After meeting Tim Rasinski during our Teachers as Learners conference this summer, I've decided to include Fast Start for Early Readers. It includes repeated readings of poems and activities to go with it. He went through the program and it seems to be a great way to build fluency in young students. Here's what had to say:

In only ten minutes a night, you can enjoy the shared ritual of reading fun, age-appropriate poems with your child, followed by a brief skill-building activity. This simple, research-proven early intervention program builds reading proficiency, word recognition, and overall comprehension. The guide includes tips for parental involvement, reading logs, 30 Fast Start stickers, and more.
I would love to know if any other teachers use this and your thoughts!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Welcome Students!!!

Today is the day that my students will receive the letter I sent and our classroom supply list! I'll be able to meet them soon! As soon as I figure out how to post documents, I'll post it. Until then, I'll just paste it below:

Kindergarten Supply List 2011-2012
·       Sturdy bookbag that your child can open and close easily. It needs to be large and wide enough to hold a 2 inch notebook and library book. Please no rolling bookbags.
·       I have ordered a notebook for daily communication. It is $1.25.
·       24 or more plain #2 pencils (to go into a community set to be used by the class)
·       1 pack of cap erasers (to go into a community set to be used by the class)
·       1 bottle of white school glue
·       2-3 packs of 24 regular crayons (the 24 pack includes the color gray, pink, and white along with the basic 8 colors)
·       1 pair of 5” scissors
·       8 or more glue sticks
·       1 box of baby wipes
·       2 boxes of tissues
·       1 bottle of hand sanitizer OR hand soap
·       Headphones for classroom and Computer Lab use (You can supply your own or purchase from school. They are usually $5.50).

Wish List Items
·       Re-sealable baggies (sandwich/quart/gallon)
·       Markers
·       Wiggle eyes
·       Batteries (AA; AAA)
·       Clorox/Lysol Wipes
·       Large Glue sticks for hot glue gun
·       White Paper lunch sacks
·       Men’s small/medium white t-shirts (for use at Thanksgiving)
·       Individually wrapped candy for treats
·       Blue poster putty

P.S. Supplies can be brought to Open House, August 4th, 3-7p.m. 

Monday, July 25, 2011

Classroom Under Construction...

I'm working to get our room organized and ready for learning. Our school's theme is all about Super Learners. Instead of going for the traditional super hero theme, I opted to steer toward Super Why from PBS kids. The show takes children through early literacy skills that we'll focus on throughout the year.
A before picture of the mess. This was after I set up the tables, desks, rug, and other furniture. I took home a few shelves to paint and repair. I also went through centers and manipulatives to organize. I've been an extremely busy bee *wink*!

I'm so excited about our new chair organizers! I'm looking forward to meeting my new group!!!

This is where we will meet for small group instruction! I recently removed the large chairs and replaced them with our crate seats. I love these and think that my kids will too!!

Friday, July 22, 2011

I found these great stamps at a Target on my summer trip. They will be great for the students' center activities. I purchased several of them!