Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Let's Talk Math!!

Hi all!! 

One of my favorite subjects in kindergarten is Math!!  It always amazes me how little minds work.  Does any one else feel this way?  Little ones can solve problems in so many ways and sometimes I have no idea how they arrived at the conclusions that they did, but they are spot on!! 

So, today let's talk math!! (Just so ya all know, I'd do this with any grade level.  I'm just sharing from a kindergarten perspective!)

In my classroom each day we spend part of our day introducing and reviewing common core concepts using my Kindergarten Daily Math units.  We also spend part of our day doing an activity called "Math Talk".  I've talked about "Math Talk" before, but thought I'd share a little bit about it again, since it is a quick and easy way to tie in some of the standards each day in your classroom!

Basically "Math Talk" is a conversation about a picture.  The little ones are using math language during our conversations (after much modeling) and sometimes we even incorporate our comprehension strategies into our discussions.   We always begin our conversations talking about what they notice in the pictures.  Many times the little people are able to infer something about what they think is going on in the picture by clues and it is so neat to see how their thinking changes as they gain more information from their classmates (synthesizing).

One of the standards for kindergarten is to describe objects in the environment using names of shapes, and describe the relative positions of these objects using terms such as above, below, beside, in front of, behind, and next to.  Using our pictures for "Math Talk" helps us tie this standard into our math time.  Another nice thing about using pictures is, it also helps children begin to see things in groups, and not just by 1's.  Each little person is joining the conversation where they are in their thinking/learning.  They are also having the opportunity to learn from their peers' thinking which pushes them just a little bit further. 

At the end of math talk, I give the little people some problems to solve using things within the pictures.  They can solve the problem in any way they wish.  Some will count on, some will add, some will subtract.  It is so neat to see how they're thinking. 

I thought maybe you would like to see what one of our pictures might look like.  I decided to include 2.  It doesn't have to be anything fancy, it could just be a picture you took on vacation, at a holiday gathering, etc.  These just happen to be of my little grandson on a trip to the apple orchard last fall.  The important piece is the conversation!!!   Happy talking! 

Friday, August 7, 2015

A little bit of digging! A little bit of playing! And, a little bit of nature!!

I'm sure you're all wondering, what in the world is she sharing with us this time?? 

Well, finally we've started getting ready for our home construction!!  Can I hear a "Oh, ya"!!?  We have owned our property for about 10 years now and  thought we'd be building on it 3 years in, but several obstacles got in our way (my husband's broken leg, a knee replacement, my back surgery and my momma being diagnosed with cancer among other things).  A little over 2 years ago we moved out to what we commonly refer to as "The Triangle".  Strange things seems to happen out here and the property is shaped kinda like a triangle (according to hubby), more like a trapezoid if ya all ask me, lol. 

Currently, we are living in a 720 square foot apartment above our garage.  Now, it is an adorable little apartment and I do have laundry facilities out here now!  So, I've been pretty happy about the whole thing other than we have no closets really.  That's been a bit tricky and we've had to be a little creative!

On Monday our excavator began knocking down trees in the area where the house is going to be built.  I was so excited and so nervous to see all of those trees being pushed into a huge, I'm telling ya, a huge pile!!  One of my little grandsons loves any kind of motor vehicle or equipment that moves.  So, mamaw gave him a call and he came out to watch.  He had a ball!!!  Not only did he get to see Chuck excavating, but was invited to get up on the equipment!  This was huge for Wyatt!! 

Our little deer have been loving it as well!  All summer I thought we had 2 babies, but apparently there were 3 little all along.  Somewhere one has been hiding!  They have been playing in the opened up area this week and I can't tell you how fun it is to watch them run and chase!! 

Hopefully, all of the digging and moving of dirt will be completed early next week and then the basement wall can be put into place.  Yeah!!  School starts in just about 2 weeks and my husband's class will be building the main part of the house.  And, I will get to help!!  Whoo! Hoo!

Enjoy the pictures below and I will try to keep you up to speed on the progress and how we're doing! 

Sunday, August 2, 2015

TPT Back to School Sale!!

Hi y'all!!  The big back to school sale at TPT starts tomorrow!  Load up your shopping carts!  There will be lots of goodies to choose from!  I already have some great items on my "wish list" and can't wait to move them to my shopping cart!! Whoo!  Hoo!!

Be sure to use the Promo Code:  BTS15 when checking out!! 


Friday, July 31, 2015

"A Little Super Hero Extravaganza!!"

This is just a little "Super Hero Extravaganza" for my daughter's new classroom!  I just thought I'd share a few of the things I'd been working on for her.  I love Pinterest, but sometimes it can be a really, really bad thing, if ya know what I mean, lol.  My daughter is going to be teaching Pre-K this year and she has been very busy finding things on Pinterest she'd like to decorate her room with.  She finds it and then asks mom to create it!!  So, I've been a little busy making stuff for her the past week or so and just thought I'd show you a few of "super heroes" I've created. 

First up, is her door sign.  I don't know who originally had this idea, but it's adorable!!  All Kaele has to do is tie a yellow ribbon in the top right-hand corners!  Then, it will be complete!

Next up, the name plates for their little lockers!!  I also made smaller ones for her to use for other things in the classroom!!!

 This little jobber is her newsletter template!  I'm going to make a couple more different choices for her to use over the course of the school year!  But, this will get her started!

And last, I made her some postcards to invite her little ones to "Meet and Greet with Mrs. Smith"!  I still have her Center rotation cards to make yet, but I'm getting really close to having everything caught up!!  Yeah!!
I hope you enjoyed a little peek at our "Super Hero Extravaganza"!!!  Have a great night!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Vacation and Grandbabies!!!

Hi y'all!
I know this is a teaching blog, but sometimes it's just fun to share family!   

My son and his wife just returned from their vacation up in Chetek, Wisconsin.  My husband and I have been discussing about going up to Wisconsin in the near future to try out the four-wheeler trails.  They look so fun!!  Any recommendations???  I know some of you live in that area, so what do you think??

Any who, I thought I'd share a few pictures of my adorable little babies!  Who doesn't love seeing pictures of little ones?!  So, sit back and enjoy!

This cool little dude is Wesson!  He is going to be a first grader this next school year and the oldest of all of my grandbabies!  Not so much a baby anymore! 
 This is him last year on Father's Day!                             This handsome little guy is Wyatt!  He's 3 and always a happy little guy!!
 Wyatt a year ago on Father's Day!  Love the expression!!          And, this little cutie pie is Willow! 
 Lovin' the swing at the cabin!  Look at that smile!!  Love it!

Monday, July 27, 2015

New Blog Design!! Whoo! Hoo!

Hi everyone, I am so very excited about my new blog design!! Dani (Crayonbox Learning) did an amazing job and was fantastic to work with!! Just click on the above link to get to her blog. My adorable clip art is from Mel Lloyd (Graphics from the Pond)! Mel was a dear and helped me out when I wasn't sure what to do!! I can't say enough about how great these two girls were in helping me!! They both answered a bunch of questions and were always willing to answer! Thank you Dani and Mel! You're both the best!! I also got a little facelift on my Facebook page and over at my TPT store!! I hope you'll take a minute to check it all out! 

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Throw Back Science Post!!

This year we tried to do science experiments 3 afternoons a week!  To say the kids were always asking if it was science time would be an understatement!  They loved science!!!  

So, tonight I thought I'd share a little on our egg science!!  Now, these experiments were done in April, so please forgive me for not posting on my blog sooner.  I did post them on my school facebook page, so they didn't really happen today.  This is the post I shared with my parents!!  Hope you're able to grab a few ideas to use with your little ones this next school year!!

Today we traveled outside to perform our science experiments with eggs!  It was so much fun and these little people could hardly wait for the day to be half over, so we could go outside and see what would happen with our eggs.  Yes, we used real fresh eggs!  No, they were not hard boiled.  Needless to say, we had a few little egg white and yolk spills, but no biggie!  Too much fun!

I think their favorite experiment was the one involving inertia.  To perform this experiment we filled a glass cup with water, put a tin pie plate on top of the glass.  Then, we put a toilet paper roll on the pie tin right above the glass.  On the tippy top of the toilet paper roll we put a fresh egg.  Finally, you hit the side of the tin pie plate with your hand.  The plate slide off and the toilet paper roll holds the egg in the air for just a moment and then drops into the glass of water.  The first time Mrs. McLaren hit the tin, the egg did not fall into the glass.  However, the next time it did.  Cheers from all the little people!!  Yeah!

The pictures where you see the green paper plate was another really cool experiment.  For this one all you need is a paper plate, an egg and an empty water bottle.  Crack the egg onto the paper plate.  Gently place the water bottle right over the yolk.  Squeeze the water bottle and suck the yolk up into the bottle.  So cool!!!

The last group of pictures shows the little cowpokes trying to break the eggs by squeezing them.  If you put your hand around an egg and squeeze it will not break.  If you hold the egg by your index finger and thumb with one on the top and one on the bottom and squeeze, again it will not break.  Amazing!

We have one experiment we are going to have to try again.  It didn't work out today.  You need a glass jar (we tried it with plastic), a piece of paper to burn, a lighter or matches and an egg.  The egg needs to be a little fatter than the opening on the jar.  You light the paper on fire, drop it into the jar and place the egg up and down on the jar.  The heat is supposed to soften the membrane of the egg to allow it to drop down into the jar.  We were not successful today, but we will be trying again!!   

Hope you enjoy our pictures and maybe try some of these fun "eggy" experiments at home with your little ones!!