Kissing Hand Math Centers

This first week went by so fast!! I forget how much I am moving around the room and managing the classroom! We got the chance to play some Kissing Hand Math games this first week of school.

Here are a couple of students rolling the die and finding a numeral to cover
that matches the dots. I believe I got this from Mailbox.

Another Mailbox game where each student spins the raccoon. Each child keeps track of
how the raccoon lands: heads or tails.

This is a game I created in which the students put the raccoons in numerical
order. Then they add cubes to match the numeral. I have included this game in my Start School- Using Brain Based Research packet.

This is another game I created using raccoons, numerals, and hearts. It can be found

Here is a closer view of the worksheet.

Have you seen this 99 page Kissing Hand packet on TPT? Click on it to visit Kinderbabies to get it! It's FREE! It has some great stuff in it.

I also finally updated a cat craftivity onto google docs. Remember this picture from the summer? Well click on it to get to the freebie to make it!

I am hoping this second week will continue to run smoothly! I will be away for part of it, and I have not done that this early in the year! I will get to visit my family and hopefully have lunch with my nephew on one of his first days in kindergarten!



What's On My Shopping List?

I am looking forward to trying out some new games and activities. I plan to do some shopping at Teachers Pay Teachers! There is a sale going on today and tomorrow. Be sure to use the code BTS12 to save even more! I am always looking for ways to use manipulatives in different ways. Here are some items that I think will be fun in kindergarten.

1. Snap cubes alphabet (There are also pre-primer and primer sight words for snap cubes!!) I am so excited about these snap cubes because we have so many of these in my classroom. This will be one of our first activities at literacy centers. I will also use the sight words one later on in the year.

2. Fun in the Kitchen I am super excited about using the fun literacy and math games at my kitchen center.

3. School Time Rap I am trying to incorporate more song books into one of my listening centers. This will be one of our first songs.

4. Label it Nursery Rhymes  First Grade Blue Skies has created a variety of Label Its. They are a fun addition to a writing center.

5. Alphabet Vacation I will be making more things from my newest unit soon . My class and I will be taking an alphabet vacation after learning about all the letters during the first 5 weeks of school.

Here is a list of Activities and Common Core Standards that I included in this packet.

1. Alphabet Vacation- RL.K.10, RI.K.10, RF.K.1, RF.K.1d, W.K.8, SL.K.1, SL.K.1a, SL.K.1b, SL.K.6
2. Alphabet Passport- RL.K.10, RI.K.10, RF.K.1d, RF.K.4
3. A is For...- W.K.2, L.K.1a, L.K.2c, L.K.2d, RF.K.4
4. Alphabet Vacation Classbook- W.K.3, L.K.1a, L.K.2c, L.K.2d
5. Postcard- W.K.3
6. Beginning Sounds Quiz-Quiz-Trade- RF.K.2, RF.K.2d, RF.K.3, RF.K.3a
7. What Else Starts Like...- L.K.5a, L.K.1a, L.K.2c, L.K.2d
8. Vacation List Craftivity- W.K.1, L.K.1a, L.K.2c, L.K.d
9. Five Little Letters- RI.K.10, RF.K.3c, RF.K.4
10. Chicka Boom Name Chart- RL.K.10, RF.K.1, RF.K.1d, L.K.2, RF.K.3c, RF.K.4
11. Syllable Sort- RF.K.2b
12. Capture the ABCs- L.K.1a, L.K.2c, L.K.2d
13. Counting Quiz-Quiz-Trade- K.CC.1, K.CC.3, K.CC.4, K.CC.5, K.CC.6
14. Sunglasses Graph- K.CC.1, K.CC.3, K.CC.4, K.CC.5, K.CC.6, K.MD.3
15. Beach or Pool Graph- K.CC.1, K.CC.3, K.CC.4, K.CC.5, K.CC.6, K.MD.3
16. Plane or Boat Graph- K.CC.1, K.CC.3, K.CC.4, K.CC.5, K.CC.6, K.MD.3
17. Show Me Five & Show Me Ten- K.CC.1, K.CC.2, K.CC.3, K.CC.4, K.CC.5, K.CC.6, K.OA.1, K.OA.2, K.OA.3, K.OA.5, RF.K.3
18. Sort the Coconuts- K.MD.3, K.CC.1, K.CC.3, K.CC.4, K.CC.5, K.CC.6
19. Ten Little Coconuts- K.CC.1, K.CC.3, K.CC.4, RF.K.3c, RF.K.4
20. Chicka Boom Tree Snack- W.K.3

Now, it isn't quite Monday, but I wanted to go ahead and post my Monday Made Its... I think this will be the last one for me to link up to. Tomorrow will be my first day with my new kindergartners! I am excited for a fun filled year. I will take a picture of each student with this particular frame. Here's one of our little dogs with it...

I also made special treats for my kinderkids on their first day of school- kissing hand cookies. Here they are before going into the oven. It is a tradition of mine and many other teachers to make these to go along with The Kissing Hand book.

If you are going back to school, I hope it will be a great first week! If you are on summer break, enjoy your rest! If you are already back in school, may your little ones be getting into the routines!


First Week Back!

First week back to work and I forget how tiresome it can be to be on my feet all day! I had fun putting my classroom back together, especially with all the stuff I have had found over the summer. Here is the view from when one walks straight in the door. On the right side are the children's cubbies and also where I store some chapter books (Junie B., Cam Jansen, A to Z Mysteries, Mystery Tree House, etc.). The colorful bins and the 16 buckets on the cart are math bins with manipulatives and games.

This is the view from the door looking at the main area of the room. The screen is pulled down for Kindergarten Information Night. I want to rearrange the area to better allow me to use the overhead projector/Elmo on a daily basis. Last year, we had to rotate the cart. This year I get to keep it in my room!!

Here is a close up of one of the tables for Kindergarten Information Night. I have a name tag holder, folder of information, and a gingerbread man homework at each place. At our school, we tag our kindergarteners for the first weeks of school. This helps us make sure we get our children home the correct way. The items in the folder are packed full of information and forms for my families. Some samples can be found in my START SCHOOL USING BRAIN-BASED RESEARCH packet on TPT. The first homework we send home for kindergarten is a gingerbread man for students to decorate and share during the second week of school.

 Here is left side of my classroom. The little table with two chairs is one of the listening centers using a CD player. After that is the abc center and further down is the computer area (not shown in this picture).

This is at the front of the room by the computer center. I posted up a letter to my new kindergarten class from last year's class. I used the beginning of the year self portraits to put around the letter, as well as a end of the year class picture.

 This is a picture of the back of the room by the cubbies on the right. This side of the cart has 4 buckets of literacy games and 12 leveled buckets for independent reading.

Here is a close up view of the back white board. I found lots of freebies for this! I moved my word wall from the front board to this back board. Click on the titles below to visit the sites to get the freebies!
1. How We Go Home Chart
2. CAFE signs
3. 1-20 Number Chart
4. Reading Strategy Buddies
6. Building Stamina Timer
7. My Word Wall Title and Letters

Here are the apple cookies that I like to pass out to my families for Kindergarten Information Night. I left them in the fridge... so I gave them out at Meet the Teacher this year. I attached a poem with them. It is one that has been around for a while. I also included the poem in my Start School Using Brain-Based Research packet.

After Kindergarten Information Night, the following morning is Meet the Teacher. Here is part of my setup. I put out my owl treat bags, a letter from one of my previous students, and a checklist to do the different tasks around the room.

When the families first come in, they sign in. I made apple signs for my parents and owl signs for my students. (Also included in my Brain packet.) After signing in, each student finds their nametag and places it where he/she would like to sit on the first day of school. Each student also picks a cubby hole to keep their belongings during the school day.

Another task for my kindergartners is to sign this chart about their first day feelings. 17/18 students signed that they were excited! One little girl was nervous. I am also excited!! I have two families that I have worked with in previous years. That always helps to calm my nerves. My little ones were adorable and full of smiles. I think it will be another great year!

One of the other tasks is that each student had to make an owl. Usually, I do a coconut tree and have them draw a face to put on the coconut. This year I decided to get more into an owl theme. Sorry for the blurry picture.

Here is a heart showing my parents love notes to their children on their first day of kindergarten.

For my previous students who stop by, I had owl cookies for them as a treat. 

Now I have to get ready for the first week of school! There is a sale tomorrow and Monday at TPT!! I have quite a few things on my wish list... more like 130 something! I just need to choose which do I need for the first weeks of school! My small store will also join in on the sale. Just click on the picture below to go to my TPT store. Click here to see who else is having a sale.


Made It Monday: Organizer

Today is my first day back in my classroom. I will be busy busy busy getting this room back in order. After today, there will be many meetings and getting prepped for Kindergarten Open House & Meet the Teacher later this week! Here is what it looked like when I entered my classroom:

This is from the main door.

This is also from the main door.

This is the view from the planning room door. On the counter is my first rounnd of stuff brought back to school from home.

Since everyone has been making these great organizers, I was inspired to make my own. I really like the ones with the larger drawers, but it stood taller than what my cabinet would hold. So I went with the one that would fit in my cabinet. I got mine at Lowe's. When I went to Joann Fabric's the next day, I saw similiar containers doubled the price!! My organizer labels are not quite done. I have to figure out what will fit in my organizer box.

I also created one of these for my How We Go Home chart! I love it!! I got it from Beg, Borrow, & Steal's site.

I velcroed the going home circles to my ribbon. I will use clothespins with names to show how children go home. Since some go home different ways on different days, I will keep my own schedule in my teacher binder. Each morning, I will move the clips that need to change.

I am looking forward to getting my room set up, especially with all the inspiration from my bloggy friends! Click below to see more creations by others.

Have a wonderful day!


Back to School Books

I love books! I would think that teachers typically say that. However, one of my teacher friends surprised me when she told me she hated reading! I know, right? Who doesn't love to read? She giggled at me, and told me that she lies to her kids and tells them she loves to read. She had me fooled- she is an incredible teacher and reader.

Chrissy at First Grade Found Me is having a book linky party! She has some great beginning of the year school books on her list.

I have quite a few beginning of the school year books from my years of teaching K-2. Here are my must haves:
I share a variety of filling bucket books during the first week of school. This ties in with my classroom management system. This particular story tells a story about a boy's day and how his and others' buckets are dipped and filled.
This is a story that young children can relate to. It is also a great lead in to active listening routines.
P.K. Hallinan has some very cute books. I like to use this particular one to let my students know that I am their friend too.

David books appeal to young children with its humor and fun pictures. These books are a great lead in to class rules.

This is a fun one too. I like to use it for a writing lesson on what we packed in our backpacks for the first day of school.
This is one I love to use in first grade. David Catrow is one of my favorite illustrators!

 I have used this book before a labeling lesson. I remember my first year of teaching, and my first graders thought I lived in the closet at school. Nowadays, they wouldn't believe me.
This is another great kindergarten book. I like to use it to think aloud how I did things alike and different than Miss Bindergarten. My students make a classbook telling how they get ready for kindergarten.

This is a great math book for counting, colors, sorting, patterning, and beginning addition.

Another fun math book! Children love to create their own dot pictures.

What are your must have books?


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