Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Field Trip - Callaway Gardens

We took our kids to Callaway Gardens yesterday!  It was the PERFECT way to wrap up our two week insects/bugs unit!

None of the kids could stop talking about the butterfly house.  It was so cool watching them walk around in the butterflies and listening to them talk about all of the facts that they've learned.

Okay, and what kind of pregnant teacher blogger would I be without a bump pic in front of the pretty azalea bushes?!  I can't believe we're 21 weeks already!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

How to Keep Kinders Quiet!

Milestones testing for the 3rd-8th grade at our school will begin tomorrow and will last for what will seem like a million years.  So, that means the entire school needed to be absolutely silent until testing is done each day (most days will just be in the morning for a 1/2 day, but we've got a few days that have multiple session!)  And to make it even better??  Some of those students will be testing online, so we cannot use any internet technology while they're testing.

So, what in the world am I going to do with 21 kindergartners?  Of course, I will try and keep their schedule as "normal" as possible, but I'm also planning to incorporate some of these fun activities and incentives to help with the SILENCE!

I don't know about you, but when I get the water colors out (or marker even), my kids turn in to silent worker bees.  They concentrate so hard on what they're doing because I make being neat and not messy a really big deal.  So, we'll probably get the super special craft supplies out in exchange for some quiet behavior.

I'll ask the kids to bring blankets and a flashlight a few of the days, and we'll turn out all of the lights and let them read whatever they want with their flashlight.  They LOVE it, and it keeps them occupied and completely silent for at least 30 minutes.  And hey, if one or two friends just happen to fall asleep...you're guaranteed an extra bit of silence!

Since we'll be stuck in the rooms until all testing is done, we won't really be able to get everyone in the cafe' as quickly as we'll need to.  I'm fine with that, because that means we'll just take the kids outside to eat!  Again, I'll ask the kids to bring some blankets/towels to eat on, and we'll just have a picnic! Fingers crossed for beautiful weather.

and.....A LITTLE BIT OF BRIBING each day. :)

Wednesday - Each student will get a cup on the corner of their table, and will start the day with 5 pom poms in it.  I can either take pom poms from them, or add to their cup depending on their behavior and voice level.  At the end of the day, they'll be able to count their pom poms, and trade them in for one of these incentive cards from The Teacher Trap. I'll have the cards grouped by "level" so that some are worth 5 pom poms, some are 10, etc.  They love it!

Thursday - Beat the Teacher!  I'll have "teacher" and "class" written on the board, and each time the ENTIRE class is doing what I asked/etc. they'll get a tally.  When they're not, I'll get a tally.  At the end of the day (or maybe at recess time), they will either get extra recess time, or owe something to me.  Since they've really had to work to be quiet during testing, I won't punish them with "quiet time", but maybe make them do something silly that they won't normally like doing...

Friday - The students will get the cup back from Wednesday, but instead of pom poms, it will contain 5 skittles!  Like Wednesday, they'll have the opportunity to gain skittles, or give them to me.  At the end of the day, they'll be able to eat all of the skittles in their cup!
*Since Friday will be an ALL day thing for us, we won't have specials. I'll bring a DVD to play A Bug's Life and will probably try and get some popcorn for them to eat as a bit of a reward...and a way to keep my sanity since I'll have them with me all day long.  We'll be finishing up our insects/bugs unit, so in the long run, it all works out!

Monday - Since we just finished up out unit on insects/bugs, we're escaping the building and heading to Callaway Gardens for a field trip.  We'll get to tour the butterfly gardens, and we'll be out of the school building.  Praise Jesus!


What do you do with your kinders during testing? How do you keep them quiet?

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Classroom Management DURING Guided Reading

Stopping by for a little teaser today...I'm guest blogging over on The Kinder Tribe today, about how I keep ALL of my students on task while in guided reading groups.  So, make sure you go and check it out today!

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Number Sense Flowers

One of my favorite spring projects is our spring mural!  And, you NEED some flowers in a mural...but how can you connect them to standards??

Insert...NUMBER SENSE FLOWERS.  Here's a zoomed in, closer look (at one of my little's who I have a "really big number" to push him a bit!).

You'll notice that they write a number in the center, and then each petal represents a different way to form that number.  Here's the break down for the six petals that we used:

-number word
-tally marks
-ten frame
-base ten blocks
-picture of "that many" things (ex. 21 hearts)*
-addition sentence

*I challenged some of my high flyers to write a subtraction sentence on their petal instead of drawing a picture.  They were so excited for a challenge!

And, here's a peek at what they look like on the wall!  You'll notice the rhyming rays that I mentioned earlier are up on the wall...and we'll add to the clouds this week. :)

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Sunday Scoop!

So excited to link up with The Teaching Trio for Sunday Scoop today!

This past week has been so wonderful! Andrew and I started our Spring Break off with a quick trip to Helen, GA.  It's so beautiful there, and was just the bit of relaxing that we both needed.  

Once home, I was able to cross EVERYTHING off of my to-do list.  I'm talking like...two weeks of lesson plans done, GKIDS assessment done, two rooms completely organized and lots of donations made, yard work done, AND I was able to work on my Gifted Cert. class! I mean, I don't think I've ever been able to say that before.  It felt amazing, and makes my Sunday Scoop not so scary!

So, what are you looking to do this week?

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