Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Guess who's posting!

Oh my, it has been too long since I last posted! I made it one of my goals to try and post AT LEAST once a month. Is this pitiful that this post shows the only pictures I have taken since my last one?! I've been good about taking pics of my kids during our most memorable days: First day of K, Decorating our Gingerbread Man cookies, With their favorite book, Checking out their first library book, and our 100th day!
Here's a FEW pics of what we have been up to this January!
 I introduced this fun number game (from Growing Kinders!) to my students in a small group and challenged them when they finished: "Show me the number 2, as many ways as you can." So you see the kids using tally marks, numerals, dots, ten frames, drawings, and number words. (We worked on that A TON at the beginning of the year!) 

A fun idea I got from Tara at Little Minds at Work. Working on spelling sight words with magnetic letter tiles. These words were in their leveled readers, which we highlights in their paper versions to take home and keep.Ya'll- if you have not checked out her blog post on guided reading in kindergarten, you MUST!!!! It's full of genius ideas!

Anyone notice my beautiful new kidney bean table??? Thanks to donorschoose, I finally have one and got rid of the old, ginormous rectangular one. YAY! I love my small group area now!
I even got some adorable new baskets from the Dollar Tree and labeled each group to keep our leveled readers, games, etc. in. This helps keep me organized and transition from group to group easily! (I meet with every child, every day, for 15 minutes).
I got this ADORABLE retelling chart idea from Simple Second Grade.

Last week, we practiced retelling using key details with the following winter books:
(click on each picture to go to the link)

If you haven't read Diamond in the Snow, you need to find it. My mom bought it for me a long time ago, but if you click on the photo below, it will take you to the author's website. It's such cute story, and my littles totally giggled at parts and we connected it to our ice experiment when we learned all about matter the week before!
We also read a book called "Snow" from the Journey's series, but I didn't have any luck finding a picture on google.

On that Friday, I assessed my student's in a few ways. I had them practice retelling me a story we read all week (orally) and I took notes on who struggled with the skill on a checklist/grid I made with all my student's names.

Then I gave them each this quick little assessment to complete in small groups. My kids couldn't read all it, so I made sure I would read one part at a time to them. Then I'd have them place it where they thought it would go before the glued it. In kindergarten, this skill is with prompting and support- so I made note of any student who needed more help/corrections. I made sure to have them glue it on the right spot. My low babies struggled with this, so I asked them to orally tell me "Who were the characters?" (and as they named them, I would give them the piece that said that character's name.) I did the same with setting and major events. This seemed to help them be more successful! 

So I'm proud to say that WITH PROMPTING AND SUPPORT- all my babies mastered the skill of retelling! =) 

Now lets get onto some math fun. We had a blast celebrating the 100th day of school! My kids thought it was SO COOL to trade in our 10 towers of 10 for a block of 100! They literally went "OOoo! WOW!"
Hip! Hip! Hooray it's our 100th day! My kids loved trading our ten towers of 10 for a block of 100!

I used the AMAZING 100th day freebie from Cara at First Grade Parade for our 100th day centers! 

The kids loved them!

Here are just a few pics of my kids in action!
Matching Hershey Kisses (with #s 1-100 on a dot sticker on the bottom) to the 100s chart!

The coolest structure that was built! They had difficulty using all 100 marshmallows in 20 minutes or less. So I think next year I may have them work in a larger group as a team!

I provided them with 100 mini-solo cups- but the kids only got this far with them before they would crumble to the ground! It's okay though! They loved it so much they asked if they could keep them for indoor recess time! Why not?! =)

This one had me cracking up! Right as I went to take a picture of their structure, all the cups fell and her face was priceless. I had to giggle and that's when the hands came out on her hips and she grinned! Love it!
The cups were definitely the class favorite! I think I may have a group of engineers in the works!

Speaking of which! This week in science, we are exploring all the ways objects move. (straight/zigzag, up/down, back/forth, round and round, side to side, fast/slow)  It was surprisingly difficult to find some activities I could with objects around the classroom. But I found some great ideas at Little Miss Hypothesis! My favorite was the "Objects can move" predictable chart! I just noticed that she even has a whole packet on TPT... so I think I will have to purchase that next year!
But as I was researching ideas on how to work on this concept in the classroom, I remember watching Peewee's Big Adventure and being glued to the TV when his breakfast "Rube Goldberg" machine would start! Oh how my curiosity would soar! So I thought, why not show something similiar to my kids to get them excited? Well I stumbled across this amazing commercial on youtube and my kids were OBSESSED. I'm telling you- we watched it like 3 times and talked about all the different ways the objects moved. They were so excited. I told them that engineers (like my dad!) build and invent machines. Then I asked them... after watching this "Who want's be an engineer?!" And I tell you- EVERY. SINGLE. HAND. WAS UP!!!! I need to get me these "Goldieblox" for my classroom AND my nieces! (I bet my dad's already on it though! He tried to get me to be an engineer, but my heart just wasn't in it.)

So during indoor recess, we got out he blocks and those kids WENT TO TOWN! It was so exciting to see them psyched up about something we were learning! I love it!

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