Friday, February 21, 2014

From The Lakes Of Minnesota, To The Hills Of Tennessee

We had such a good time celebrating memorial Day this year. I wanted the kiddos to really understand why we lived in such a great country and some of the symbols and people they should know.

We started off our week looking at a Smart Board presentation all about symbols of the United States. The first symbol we learned about was one we know very well since we say our Pledge of Allegiance every morning while our morning helper holds up the flag. The students were told the only supplies they could use were their fingers and glue to make the pieces of their flag. Tearing paper is a huge fine motor skill and helps develop the muscles necessary to hold writing utensils and write so we have been working on this skill a lot lately. We want those little fingers as strong as possible to make beautiful letters.

We learned that the Bald Eagle is the national bird of the U.S.A. They aren't really bald, but the white on their head makes it look like it is (the kiddos got a kick out of this. We used our fingers again to tear the paper for baldies head and we also worked on tracing our hands and cutting them out. Tracing will be a skill we continue to work on the next few weeks. 

One Important person we learned about was the first president of the United States names George Washington. We learned that he wore a wig and is on the quarter and the 1 dollar bill.

Abraham Lincoln was the 16th president and is on the penny and $5 dollar bill

For jobs this week we made a Unicorn U

 umbrella u's

 We added in the numbers 11-15 and used the numbers 1-15 to build a log cabin like Abraham Lincoln lived in when he was a boy. Next year we will be using popsicle sticks instead of cutting out the strips. This was one of those disastrous activities that are super cute and awesomely educational in theory, but completing them makes you want to run your nails down a chalkboard. The paper was to thin, the strips were to small and the numbers kept getting cut off, and we will never use paper again to complete this activity. I am sorry I put my babies through the horror of this activity and the flimsiest paper known tom man! 

And we continued working on beginning letter sounds. We have a super fun Smart Board activity that goes along with this and I am so proud of my friends for doing such an awesome job with this skill.

I can also proudly say we listened to Proud To Be An American by Lee greenwood a few times and may or may not have pantomimed the entire song and yes our children all think we are insane, but they love us and that is all that matters.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day!!!!!

Happy Valentine's Day!!!!!!

Since I am still a few weeks behind on my posts I am using nap time to blog instead of clean the pots and pans in the sink right now. I have been home with the girl these past 2 days because she is sick and I finally have a moment to catch up.

This week was more of a fun work week. My babies work so hard everyday that sometimes they just need a break to have some fun. Since we had already started working on our Valentine's Day Bear Boxes we didn't have to rush to get those done.

We made a little Valentine's Day gift for someone special by cutting long strips of paper into squares and filling our blank hearts in so they were nice and colorful.

 We created Be Mine Bee's

Water colored  coffee filters and framed them with hearts. We have been working on cutting out the middle of things and my friends are definitely masters of this skill now!

We did complete 2 activities that stretched our brain muscles a bit. We did a little chocolate kisses subtraction where each student was given 10 kisses then rolled a dice and took away or "ate" that many then ahd to fill in the subtraction equation with how many they had left.

 And we continued working on beginning letter sounds by coloring in the letter each picture began with.

We ended our week with a super duper fun Valentine's Day party complete with passing out Valentine's and cookie decorating.

I think everyone had a great time based on the sugar coma's at nap time.

I also want to share the cute Valentine's Day gift I sent home with the babies and if I remember later I will add the awesome heart crayon Mrs. Douglas gave out. I wish I had gotten a picture of the cute packaging she sent them in. I wanted to do something fun, but not edible and full of sugar and when I found This cute printable I was sold. I had originally wanted to do tiny play doh's, but couldn't find them anywhere and when I came across these tiny bubbles I was done.


Friday, February 7, 2014

My Baby Just Wrote Me A Letter

Sadly this is not a post about my love of Joe Cocker. This is just a little post about our week spent learning about the post office. 

We actually started off our week learning about a cute little guy called the groundhog. Fun fact! Did you know another name for the groundhog is a woodchuck. I love that I am still learning new thins everyday and if I am excited about learning I know my babies will also be excited. Groundhog's Day actually occurred on Sunday so I already knew what the outcome of Punxatawny Phil's day in the sun was, but I wanted to see what the babies thought had happened. We decided to graph our guess if he did or did not see his shadow, but we needed something to graph so we had everyone make their own Groundhog/Woodchuck out of hearts since Valentines Day was approaching. 

On Tuesday we read The jolly Postman and learned all about the different types of letters/mail. We learned all about addressing and writing letters and then we decided it would be even more fun to make mailboxes to hang up in our classroom for our friends to send us mail in to. After we designed and hung up our mailboxes each friend drew a name from a hat and they had to write a letter to the friend whose name they drew. We learned that when writing a letter you wrote To and that friends name and From and your name. Before we could deliver our letters everyone made a mail carrier hat and then they used the name they drew to match to the mailbox of that friend and deliver the letter they wrote.

I wanted to find some way to help my friends understand all of the different places we lived (planet, continent, country, state, city, school) and I found this cute activity on Pinterest. Sadly I could not locate a link, but I love how it turned out. We went through all of the different places we live and then each student cut out the colored circles and we went through 1 by one adding them to our rings. We started with the Earth because that is the planet we live on. Then we added North America because that is the continent we live on. In North America we live in the United States of America. In the United States not all of our class lives in Tennessee so we used the State that our school is in. In Tennessee our school is located in the city of Memphis. In Memphis we are located in our school. All of these are such difficult abstract concepts, but I feel like this was one of the easiest and best hands on way I have found to teach such little people this concept.

One activity we worked on all week was a little something fun since Valentine's Day was coming up the next week. We wanted to make sure everyone had something to take home all of their goodies in. One of my room moms came sent me a few links of cute ideas but This one was my favorite. I loved it because it allowed each student to be creative and it had an element of Earth Friendliness because we were reusing milk jugs.

For jobs this week we made a Penguin P and a piano p

We wrote the room using Post Office Words

We sorted, graphed, counted, and wrote the number of different coins.

My friends favorite thing this week was of course having mailboxes they could create things and stuff them into for their friends. We left our mailboxes up for a few weeks until they all started falling off of the wall and with everything else falling down everyday we decided to go ahead and send them home to be hung up.