Thursday, September 27, 2012

A Balloon Party!

What a FUN way to celebrate!  My kiddos earned all their compliments and were able to put all the pieces on Mr. Potato Head so we had our first compliment party.  The kids came up with ideas for a celebration and for the first time in eleven years of teaching, someone suggested a balloon party!  What a FAB idea, all I had to do was sit on my couch last night to blow up the balloons (my husband pitched in as well so it was done in about 10 minutes) and deliver them today.  The kids were over the moon excited!  Seriously, their eyes lit up and their smiles beamed so bright I was sure they were would all just burst at the seams!  We waited until recess time and then spent 15 minutes indoors playing with our balloons before going outside to the playground.   Of course, my teacher brain found a way to make it an educational opportunity as well:)  After 5 minutes of balloon play time, we took the time to sort the balloons by color and then by size (because thanks to my husband some were small and some were big).  We also had to count out loud as each student tried to hit their balloon 10 times without letting it touch the ground.  We took a few minutes to discuss balloon safety and surprisingly NONE of them popped!  Each student got to take their balloon home with them and they were all so excited to about carrying them home.  The magic of balloons...absolutely amazing!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Did someone say FREE???

Hello Friends!

Wow, this is the longest time I have gone without blogging since beginning my blog in July!  Of course, you all know started! Which means I barely have time to write lesson plans much less write for my blog. The good news is that I think things are finally starting to smooth out and my new goal is to write at least 3 posts a week. So much has happened since that first day of school two weeks ago!  I am still completely shocked at how incredibly hard kindergarten teachers work, not to say EVERY teacher doesn't work incredibly hard, but our wee little kinders seriously demand attention every single second of the day.  So from the time I wake up to begin taking care of my own little monkey's to the time I get them to sleep around 7:30 or 8pm each night, my attention is required of at least one little person every minute of those 13-14 hours. It is physically and mentally exhausting.  Now after saying all that, I have something to add that will probably confirm the suspicion you may have that I am nuts for taking on this challenge but here it is....I LOVE IT!  Seriously, I am having so much fun in Kindergarten!

Just to add to my excitement over teaching such a fun grade level I have stumbled upon something else that makes me want to dance a little jig.  If you are a parent or teacher of a preschooler or early elementary kiddo and haven't discovered then let me tell you are truly missing out.  I fell in love with this amazing online educational resource this summer when I used it with my son Jackson.  Now I love it even more.  You know why?  Because it is FREE for all public elementary schools.  Yes FREE!  I actually logged in under my son's account this past Friday and projected it on the smart board to play a game called The Great Ticket Hunt in which the students each got to take a turn touching one of the letters to see if there were any hidden tickets behind it. Once a letter was touched the students were shown how to form the letter and a picture clue was given with each letter to help students attach a sound to each letter.  The kids LOVED it and each student couldn't WAIT to have a turn picking a letter. When the hidden tickets were discovered the class just went wild!

So my mission this weekend was to find out how much a classroom membership would cost.  I am only paying $7.95 a month for Jackson's membership but anticipated a significantly higher cost for a class membership.  So you can imagine how excited I was to discover it is FREE for all public schools.  The best part?  You can add each of your students to your class homepage so they can each play whichever lessons you pick for them in class during centers or at home!  For each completed activity tickets are earned.  The tickets can be used to purchase a slew of virtual goodies such as toys, costumes, clothes for each student's avatar, pets, etc.  The site is wonderful and is already aligned to common core.  I DO NOT work for, I am not getting any kind of anything for this post.  I am simply an excited teacher anxious to make sure you are all aware of such a fabulous resource offered to us all for free! If you haven't signed up for a class membership already, what are you waiting for?  I promise you and your students will LOVE it...especially if you have an interactive white board:)