Father’s Day Coupon Book

Looking for something fun to do with your kids for Father’s Day?  Try this coupon book that looks like a matchbook.  It has ten coupons that the kids fill out saying what the coupon is good for, and a unique matchbook cover.  Ideas for coupons are included.  Some ideas are coupons for hugs, cleaning their room, breakfast in bed or washing the car.  Share any ideas you have for to make Father’s Day special.

St. Patrick’s Day Classroom Ideas for Kids

I was recently asked what I do for St. Patrick’s Day with students.  I am a huge fan of  engaging students through various holidays! St. Patrick’s Day has always been an exciting day with the students joining me in looking for a little trickster leprechaun on campus!

weather unit rainbow

I made a small pair of pants out of green fabric.  I would mess up the room when the kids where at lunch, sprinkle some glitter around the room (even in the toilets), and hang the pants on a cracked open window.  The students would look for the trickster everywhere.  When they would find the pants, we would laugh about how there was a little leprechaun running around without pants.  He would always leave a gold coin on the desk for the students.  Now, how does this fun tie into education?  First, we would read a book about a tricky leprechaun.  I also have a fantastic activity called The Paper Leprechaun where the kids have to make their own paper leprechaun using fine motor skills after listening to a poem, and the pot of gold goes missing.  They write out a personality for the paper leprechaun and then write about how to catch one!  For a home project, the students would make leprechaun traps working on problem solving skills at home with their parents.  These would be shared with the class during the week.  I would sometimes display them in the media center.  During centers, students made rainbow art. Each student would get to make their own LUCKY Shamrock Hat to wear for the day.

paper leprechaun cover      Leprchaun cover

For math, we would sort, count, graph, and eat Lucky Charm cereal. Who doesn’t like a little snack while learning!Lucky Charms Math long

Play some Irish traditional music while the kids are working using Pandora, YouTube, or Amazon.

ST. Patricks day headband

Need some great books to share with your students? Look below…

CHECKLIST for 12 Day Giveaway

Hi everyone!  This is an exciting time of year.  To say thank you for all the hard work you do, I’ve teamed up with the BEST Teacher Pay Teacher Authors to bring you a MEGA Giveaway! Checkout and LIKE my Facebook Page for details.  You can check this blog daily too for information on daily special REASONS to visit each day!  Here is the directions for the $20 CASH part of the Giveaway.  One person will get $20 CASH! (see below the image also to enter the raffle for $500 and MORE prizes for TEACHERS)

  • Download and print the checklist
  • Follow the directions
  • Take a photo of this checklist after it’s completed
  • Upload it to my Facebook Page or one of the participating store’s pages with the Hashtag #TisTheREASON
  • Download the PDF HERE: 12 Days Giveaway PDF Checklist 12 Days Giveaway CHECKLIST Updated
  • Winners will be announced on December 17th.  The only requirement is for you to be a teacher to win. Good LUCK!

Enter the $500 #TisTheReason Rafflecopter Giveaway

LABOR DAY GIVEAWAY & Sale

TEACHERS!!!!  Labor Day is a day we want to THANK YOU with a *****GIFT CARD GIVEAWAY*****  We have teamed up with other talented teacher authors to give away 2 AMAZING prizes to 2 LUCKY teachers!  The prizes are $100.00 to Teachers Pay Teachers, and $100 to Amazon!!!

Also, many of the stores you can follow are holding big sales this week, so visit their stores. See Below to sign up:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

******The more stores you follow in the Rafflecopter, the better your chances are of winning!*********

This giveaway ends Sat. September 9th at 12:00 PM EST and our TWO lucky winners will be announced on Sunday, the 10th and contacted.

 

Several of these author’s stores will be holding sales on Labor Day as well! Check them out. My store, Teacher’s Brain, will be 20% off for ONE DAY ONLY, Labor Day! Yes, even BUNDLES will be on sale!

Engaging Students in Themed Days

There is no denying that the easiest way to keep students engaged is to have themed days in your classroom. Typical days I participate in through the school year are Polar Express Days, Snowed-In Days, May the 4th Be With You, The Ocean Festivals, The Thankful Festivals, and a Fall Festivals. The Fall Festival is where our team teaches the same fall lesson with a craftivity to the entire kindergarten as they rotate to each room.  There is always 100% engagement when themed days are utilized in the academic setting.

ESCAPE ROOMS

Escape rooms for elementary students are the latest educational themed day craze.  It is amazing to see kids working together to problem solve, find clues and the excitement it brings when they actually “escape the room.”  Most escape rooms use a video as a hook.  Here are the escape room themes I use in the primary classroom:

Sight Word Mystery

Numbers 1- 10

Comprehension

Save the Turtles

DINOSAUR Themed

Alphabet Mystery

Veterans Day

SPY DAY

Another great day which involves math, science, reading, writing and critical thinking skills is a SPY Day. This themed day motivates and rewards your students while sneaking in learning. Students dress up like secret agents, are given a mission to find a stolen object, walk through lasers, learn how to lift fingerprints, memorize a new alias and work as a team to discover clues to solve the mystery. Allowing the kids to dress like secret agents, really gets them engaged.

I keep the lights off and have them do their work with flashlights. I also invite parents to participate in the fun. When students see their parents having fun, they can’t help but be more positive about learning. Of course, it doesn’t hurt to have extra help these days too! I’ve never had one themed day where there was a child not participating. It’s a lot of prep work for the teacher, but well worth the work. So, if you want your students engaged in learning, try to make learning fun by introducing a themed day. Click the picture below to find the printables for this themed day.


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St. Patrick’s Day Crafts and Ideas

I love celebrating St. Patrick’s Day in my classroom!  So this year, I’m a little bummed that we are on Spring Break, but who is going to complain about being on a break?

There are a lot of fun activities you can do with your students to really make the day memorable, special, and educational! I like to start my day with a leprechaun story from our class library.  I also love the video Leprechaun’s Gold found on YouTube.  You can explain the vocabulary words gold, greed, kindness and caring to the students after the video. I usually show it during Social Studies.  Share with the students that leprechauns are small, mischievous little men you find in Irish folklore. Then, locate Ireland on a globe.  I tell students how last year I almost caught one messing up my classroom, but he escaped.  I read the poem The Paper Leprechaun to the students.  I have them make their own paper leprechaun and pot of gold.  The pot of gold is separate from the leprechaun, so they can hide the gold from the paper leprechaun. They give their leprechaun a personality by writing it’s biography.   While students are at lunch, I mess up the room, sprinkle gold or green glitter around (even in the toilets), make little green footprints on the floor that lead to an open window and leave gold chocolate coins on their desks with a note from Lucky the Leprechaun. I have a pair of green felt little pants that I made myself, and hang from the open window. I pretend to try and grab him, but only have his pants.  The kids always giggle thinking there is a leprechaun running around in it’s underwear!  For math, I buy Lucky Charms cereal to pass out to the students.  They have to sort, graph and solve math problems using the lucky marshmallows found in the cereal.  After I check their work, they get to eat the cereal. (As always, check for food allergies prior to this lesson.) I send home a Family Project for student’s to create a trap for a leprechaun to build that home connection.  Finally, I let them make leprechaun headbands and Shamrock GLASSES to wear during story time.  If the kids are having fun learning, they will develop a lasting relationship with you and want to learn!

St Patricks Day Craft Leprechaun Craft Hat and Beard Headb St. Patrick's Day Writing and Crafts - Leprechaun Unit

Save $$$$$$ and get the UNIT

St Patrick's Day Craftivity - The Paper Leprechaun - Fun P   St Patrick's Day Craftivity Clover Glasses - by Teacher's Brain  Lucky Charms Graph - St. Patrick's Day Math Sort and Writing

Happy St. Patrick’s Day,

Cindy

Valentine’s Day in K

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LOVE is in the air this February! I’m so excited to let you know about the group of Teacher Authors who created a great Giveaway just for YOU!  Teachers love sharing, so let me share some of the ways we celebrate Valentine’s Day in Kindergarten.

My kids love candy (I know… not manyValentine's Day Candy Heart Estimation who don’t love it!) So I ask parents to donate conversational hearts to the class.  Students get to sort them by color, graph them, and estimate how many hearts will fill up the heart graphic. (This is a FREEBIE, you can find on TPT.) My students who are in high school now, tell me this was one of their favorite memories of my class on Valentine’s Day!

Students play I SPY Missing Letters games, solve valentine themed word problems, make mini books and crafts which can be found in my  Valentine’s Day CRAFTS and PRINTABLES.  We make hats and fun glasses to wear all day, so everyone know it’s Valentine’s Day in our classroom!  Valentine's Day cover

Of course, a Valentine’s Day celebration would not be complete without passing out Valentine cards!  I ask parents to send in a decorated Valentine’s Day shoe box with student’s names clearly on the box to help students pass out their valentine cards. This is a great writing activity for parents to to with their children too by sending home a list of first name, so students can address the envelopes.  This is the other favorite activities my older students talk about! Some still have their box! So, now I have students write positive words to each student, so they can keep that in their box too.  This will hopefully make them aware of how special they were to others in kindergarten.  Hope you build some great memories with your students this year!  Join the Rafflecopter Giveaway below and hop on over to the next great post at Teach Magically!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Slide3Debora Marines TeachMagically

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Groundhog Day in K!

Groundhog Day is celebrated in America on February 2 in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. The legend is that the groundhog comes out of his burrow and if it sees it’s shadow, there will be six more weeks of winter weather.  If it is cloudy and there is no shadow, it is an indication of an early spring.  Each year we create crafts and make predictions about groundhogs in my kindergarten class.  Here are some ideas:Slide22

  1. Pass out sticky notes and have a chart to make predictions on if the groundhog will see it’s shadow or not on February 2.
  2. Go to the Groundhog Web site to share the history of Punxsutawney Phil and watch the video LIVE STREAM of Punxsutawney.   http://www.groundhog.org/ (You can see the replay here also.)
  3. Use this FREE coloring printable for students to engage in for fine motor skills.
  4. Sing Groundhog Day Poem (Tune: Frere Jacques)Groundhog Day

    Groundhog Day

    Is near

    Is near

    Will he see his shadow

    Will he see his shadow

    And disappear

    Disappear

  5. You can make the whole day relate to groundhogs by using activities in all subject areas in this GROUNDHOG DAY UNIT.

Make it a fun day! Students remember connections, not lessons.

TPT GIFT CARD GIVEAWAY AND 2-DAY SALE!

Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas to all of you!  You all deserve this winter break to relax and spend time with your family.  To make your holiday sparkle a little more, we are offering a couple $25.00 TpT Gift Cards to some lucky winners.  In addition to the gift cards, we are having sales in some TpT stores taking place on December 25-26. Follow this link to see the store link ups – APPLETASTIC LEARNING

Click the image to visit my store!

Christmas Sale

Click here to find the raffle to WIN the gift cards.

School Holiday Door Decorating Contest

This year our school decided to do a door decorating contest.  Although I didn’t win, the contest made the school look festive, challenged teachers to a little friendly competition, provided a fun tour of doors for the kids, and inspired me to share some of my favorites in this blog post. Enjoy!

door11
Oh Deer Holiday Door Decorating Contest
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Gone to the Beach – First Place Winner – $100 Gift Card

 

 

door44
Read Your Way Through Some Snowy History Door Contest
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Elves At Work Door Contest
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My Door – Let It Snow Sight Words – Students made sight word snow flakes for the walls and windows.