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Sunday, June 23, 2013

Are You Coming to Vegas So We Can Meet?

How cute is this little number? I put it together for the "I Teach K" conference I swore I was not attending this year. Why? I thought I needed to relax this summer and catch my breath but the bloggers I love convinced me to join them and I am so grateful they did. I cannot wait to hug old friends and make a million new ones. Now that I signed up I know it was the best thing to do for 4 days in the summer. Blogland is coming and so am I. We are having a huge meet-up thanks to Rachelle Gunderson from What the Teacher Wants. I love that girl! 
This conference is such a great opportunity to learn more about the Common Core and 21st century learning. I had a blast last year and want to see all the kindergarten teachers from all over this country come together because of their passion for this grade level. Debbie Clement is opening up the conference with her amazing music and I look forward to seeing her! I hope I get to meet this wonderful lady. The list of presenters is fantastic and our very own blogging gurus are all over this program. Move over people, the teacher bloggers are making a difference. Deanna Jump, Kim Adsit, Kathy Griffin,  Lori Elliot, Deedee Wills, Kathleen Pedersen, are just some of the great speakers I can look forward to. So once again I will see ya in Vegas... Woohoo! Are you coming? Find me... now go register.
Here are the pages for this book.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Camp Common Core... Life Is Never A Bore!

Are you kidding me. I just finished on Friday and my teacher friends told me that summer school is starting in our district immediately.  They wanted "Camp Common Core" for their youngest learners. Honestly, I just put everything away and now they are gearing up for a summer program. This packet was created for students who have completed their kindergarten year and is 82 pages of cut, paste, and color activities. It can all be run from your printer. It focuses on Foundational Skills and Math. Are you a home schooling mom? Want to see what are kids are expected to do? This packet is available in both stores. Check it out! Click on the store you like. Now go enjoy your summer.


Monday, June 17, 2013

Core Smore: Recommendations for Summer Reading

Teach Like a Pirate is such a great read and it is all about teaching with passion. Hello, kindergarten teachers have been doing this forever. We could write this book. It is about student engagement, letting loose, wearing costumes, and bringing your personal passions into the classroom. Yup we have no problem wearing costumes, being drama queens, and doing the unpredictable. Read it and just enjoy validation of all that you hold dear to your heart as a primary teacher. I am loving it! The others are in my stack and I will report on them later. Promise.

Here are the books that I have been reading since early June. If you are really trying to wrap your head around the core standards I recommend the first book for a quick and easy reference that you can keep on your school desk at all times. It charts the standards in reasonable chunks and shows you what it looks like in kindergarten, first and second grade. It is very teacher friendly and I am a huge fan of easy! This is a winner: Common Core Standards.
Text Complexity is a lot more academic but if you are a "smartie pants" and need to understand this crucial topic to be a CC expert buy it. You will hear this term constantly so you might want to understand what all the hoopla is about. I swear it is an easy and informative book that is clear as mud... just kidding!
The Common Core: I have not even opened the cover but many people are suggesting this one so I am on the bandwagon cause I am afraid of missing the common core train. It deals with the reading strategies for teaching Common Core and I say "bring it on..." Do we ever do anything for more than a few years? Just sayin'
Now here is what I really need to know. What mindless trash can I read to give myself a brain break? I better bust out some beach books or I will never consider this a vacation!
What are you reading that I should be reading too? My list is growing...

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Why Is Kindergarten Obsessed With Blue Cats?

I was walking through my favorite kindergarten classrooms on Thursday and the students could not wait to show me their "Writing In My Kindergarten Shoes" journal they were finally taking home! They were so excited about this. My teaching friend loved this packet I created and once a month she would have them writing about something they were learning in their Pete Journal. These were so special to the children that they did their best drawing and writing and took so much pride in the results. Each month the teacher added the new page to the previous ones she had under paper clips on her writing wall. There were times where she consulted the class about what they should write and draw. The children felt like authentic authors on a very simple level. This was such an easy way to collect samples of their progress throughout the year. I was blown away by their growth and they loved the seasonal Pete images that made writing so much. 
But the teacher took it one step further. I left a space for their picture which she was anxious to add to the cover. However, she had each student hold the stuffed animal in their arms and the results were precious! They were thrilled to have their picture taken with such a celebrity and we loved their enthusiasm. What is it about this character that fills a five year old with such happiness?
If you want this for your class in the fall I have it in my Teachers Notebook store. Just click on the photo and it will take you right their. Shopping with a simple click... easy!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

On Tour With Camp Common Core

I just finished this packet and might be too late to the party. It took me a long time to create these 80+ pages and align each one to a common core standard that kindergarten children should continue to review during the summer. No summer slide on my watch! These pages do not require a colored printer and I tried to keep the supplies needed to a minimum. So summer is just starting and I hope this is something you can use either in a summer program or at home with your own young student. These pages include both math and literacy activities that are high interest and engaging. Puzzles and many cut and paste activities are included.
Flash cards are part of this kit and can be cut up and placed on your key chain to practice wherever you go during your summer travels. The theme is "Camping" and these pages will make learning fun while you are playing in the sun. Click here to purchase this packet at my TpT store.
If by chance you are still at school with your kiddos then you can purchase this to send home with your students. The directions are simple and parents will know exactly what to do.  Have a happy summer!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

It's Been A Common Core Kinda Year!

Summer is approaching and we are winding down for the year. I don't think anyone wants another sweet treat at this point so look what I put together for my teachers! I bought the water bottles from Walmart and the energy packets. My teachers rocked out the Common Core units of study we created this year and I love them for working so hard and doing such an amazing job. I just wanted to show a little appreciation for all their hard work and give them the energy to finish out the week. Here is a simple idea you might like to adapt for your students or teachers during the hot days ahead.