Monday, August 27, 2012

Back to School...a glimpse at week #1!

Hey friends! Sorry I've been MIA. I feel like I am forever apologizing for slacking in the blog department, it's just been insane lately. I just returned yesterday from Georgia, where I judged the Miss Atlanta pageant.! I wish much success to the new winner and know that she will represent ATL so well at the Miss Georgia pageant! Anyways, in the midst of all that....we've been in full throttle with back to school. Students listened to this story...I just love it!
We went on a hunt to try to find the Gingerbread Man...
Clues were everywhere...
Some clues even led us upstairs. We meet all of our school's faculty and staff!
The last clue led us back to our room for a surprise...coloring sheets and a gingerbread cookie!
We did other activities, too. Like cutting, character analysis, and sequencing! We learned a lot our first week in school!
Students even listened to a variety of Gingerbread Man books and learned how to make comparisons. Here is the venn diagram we did as a whole.
Lastly, we wrapped up everything by making a Gingerbread glyph! These turned out oh so cute and my kinders had a blast putting them together. 
Don't forget...all of these activities and more can be found in my Gingerbread Man Back to School Pack.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Open House 2012

Hey ya'll. Lawdy mercy...I am beyond exhausted! Seems like (every year) I forget just how difficult it is to get back on a routine, wake up early, and teach all the new rules, etc. to my kinders. Anyone with me? We had Open House last Sunday and have been going strong ever since. Looks like I'm in for a great year with such sweet students and wonderful families. I am blessed, indeed. I wanted to share my Open House stations I put together. I did a spin off of what KinderGals had posted last year and was thrilled with the way it turned out. I greeted parents at the door and had families visit 5 stations. This allowed me a chance to walk around, answer questions, and introduce myself. Here is what I did:
Station 1 - Sign in, take business card, information, etc.
Station 2 - Pick up your first homework page! (All About Me book...can be found in my Classroom Book Set Volume 1 packet). Students were allowed to add their name with letter stickers. 
Station 3 - Donations! Due to being a Title 1 school, I am not allowed to send out a "supply list." Parents can send in items if they wish but I am not required to have them provide anything for their student. Therefore, I display items I use often and encourage them to take a photo with their cell phone. This allows them to see the exact brand, size, etc. of the items I use. It works well! 
 Station 4 - Scavenger Hunt....this is courtesy of my dear friend, Katie. Check it out {here}
 Station 5 - Treats for everyone! Parents were presented with apples and students grabbed a playdough!
You can find the freebie printables for these items below:
Apple {here}
Playdough {here}

Interested in grabbing the station signs for your OWN Open House? Click the image below.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Back to School SALE!

Click the image to go directly to my store!

Hey friends! It's that time - Back to School Sale on TpT! Whoo most favorite time of the year. Get ready to stock up and purchase all of your favorite products at discounted prices. AND, don't forget to enter BTS12 for an additional 10% off at checkout. Wow, that's great savings! All of the authors at Blog Hoppin' and several of my friends are participating, you can see them {here}. A special thanks to Amy Lemons for making this great sign for us. Happy Shopping!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Comfort and a freebie!

Hey ya'll! I know everyone is gearing up for back to school. I am in full swing and a complete ball of nerves. Why do I get this way every year? ha You figure after a few years under my belt and five "1st days," I'd be good at it by now. But - nope! Still get nervous! eek Anyways, I posted this photo a while back that I pinned on pinterest. Remember?
I just love the idea of emphasizing the importance between school and home and allowing your students to bring in a framed photo. Can you imagine how proud they'll be and what comfort it will bring? Nonetheless, I've had some emails about it wondering how to ask parents, etc. SO - I put together a letter for you. I plan on sending this out a week or two into the school year. That way, students will be settled and I will of have ample time to clear space for all the sweet frames. Yay! Grab your parent note below and let me know how it turns out! 
What brings YOU comfort during "back to school craziness"?

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

September Homework Pack

I just love blogging and all the wonderful connections I've made while doing it. This is such a great way to network and make new friends. One of the sweetest friends I've made is...Katie! You may know her from Little Warriors aka the most adorable blog EVER! She is seriously so darling and I am thrilled to have teamed up with her to launch a series of monthly homework packs. 

Do you have parents asking you what they can work on at home? Not sure what to have your kinders do? Well, we've got your answer! This is the first homework pack in a series of monthly packs to reinforce your students' skills throughout the year. This packet starts in September and is a great "kick off" once students are settled into a routine. 
This packet includes:
~Weekly homework calendars (5 weeks included, with 3 different weekly calendar options) that lay out which activities should be completed each night
~A monthly project
~Response sheets for your student to complete and submit with each activity

Filled with 51 pages and created by 2 Kindergarten teachers with different curriculums, this can be yours for $8.00! Hop on over to Katie's store and grab your copy today. Happy shopping!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Ahoy Mateys!

I don't know about ya'll...but I absolutely LOVE getting to peek inside classrooms. Seriously...I'm all the time googling classroom themes and checking out layouts, bulletin boards, and different set ups. So many ideas and such wonderful inspiration. With that said - meet Cassie...wife, mother of 2, and new 2nd grade teacher. 
Cassie and I taught kindergarten together at my last school and she recently was moved to 2nd grade. She decided to go with Collins' Crew and all things pirates and has been gracious enough to let me share some classroom pics. 

What are your thoughts? I love the focus wall and how everything matches and ties in. So clean, neat, and creative. Hopefully this has provided a little inspiration for you! Thanks, Cassie, for letting me share. Happy Sunday, ya'll!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Think Jungle....lime green overload! most of you know, I got a wild hair to paint my classroom this summer. Um...what was I thinking?! It was this horrible yellow color that I referred to as "dullow!" ha So I did my research - bright colors, calming, energy, etc. and went with a lime green color. All about the explorers and safari theme. Think jungle. Anyways...wanted to give ya'll a sneak peek. I'm not quite done...and I've changed things alot since the last photos I've shared. Seriously - I may have rearranged my room and swapped my bulletin boards out like 5 times. I.have.problems.

Do you ever get ideas in your head and then when you go to put it on paper, it doesn't come out right? Well, that's me...with my classroom. I've had all these ideas swirling around...but nothing is coming out like I want it to. ha I think I'm just putting TOO much thought into it. Maybe I'll even repaint next year...tone it down a little? Oh's almost done and that's what is important. Take a look....  
I went with kraft paper and double borders on all of my boards (for a uniformed look). I drew out the explorer and added greenery to the top. Inspiration: Clutter Free Classroom

So...that's all for now! Whatcha think? Stay tuned for inspiration. I'll be posting pics from some friends' classrooms and hopefully a little blog post about "community bins!" Happy Saturday!