Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Tis' the season!

Christmas break is coming quickly. The kiddos know that our routine has changed and they are feeling the effects of the crunch to get second quarter grade card testing completed. At our school, we participate in Positive Behavior Support (PBS). One of the things we adopted as a consequence for unacceptable behavior is the Kindergarten Think Sheet.  Since most Kindergarten students don't come to us knowing how to write, we've found this Think Sheet meets the needs of our writers and non-writers and it allows them to take responsibility for expressing their actions on paper. I have adapted it a little to be less specific to our school expectations so that others can use it, as well. I hope you find it useful!

Think Sheet

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Gingerbread Men Number Flip Book 1-20

I just updated the seasonal flip book to include gingerbread men. Our kids are expected to be at 31 by this time of year. I stopped the book at 20 though because it's mainly just a reinforcement for the kiddos who need extra practice.

My Gingerbread Men Number Flip Book 1-20

Popcorn Words Printables

I recently attended a BER conference specifically for Kindergarten. It was amazing the amount of ideas that my co-workers and I came back with. One thing I knew I wanted to do immediately was change my boring alphabetical order word wall to fun popcorn words. There were so many great ideas. I know the concept has been around awhile, but it made more sense for my class this year.

I created a few printables to go along with our Houghton Mifflin Reading Series. There are large words for the word wall and smaller cards for flash cards or station/center activities. I also included color words. I hope to make a template for you to type your own words sometime soon.

Popcorn Words - HM Series Large

Popcorn Words - Color Words Large

Popcorn Words - HM Series Flash Cards

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Top 100 Classroom Blogs

I'm so thankful my blog is listed in the Top 100 Classroom Blogs. Alexis has put a lot of hard work into compiling sites that serve as a 'resource guide' for other teachers. You should definitely check it out. I'm sure you will find lots of interesting blogs and many great ideas and resources, as well.

I'm so humbled by her inclusion of my tiny little blog. It makes me happy to know that there are other teachers out there searching for many of the same things my Kdg. kiddos are learning about. I hope you enjoy this blog as much as I do sharing! :)

Bear Stays Up for Christmas + Printables

Today, I was observed for my yearly formal observation. I woke up with a migraine this morning and none of the medicine I took remotely eased the pain. Hopefully my evaluation won't be horrible. My fingers are crossed! I will find out soon. There were a few points I was disappointed with, but I am pretty critical when it comes to judging myself. Is anyone else like this?

 Photo Source

I chose to read the story Bear Stays Up for Christmas by Karma Wilson.  I focused on developing post-reading strategies and allowing the students to re-enact the action words in the story and then illustrate the square with pictures of their favorite parts of the story. Here are a few printables that I created to go along with the story. I will try to take a picture after we finish our quilt.

Bear Stays Up for Christmas Vocab Words

Join me on Facebook!

I just created a page for Lil' Country Kindergarten on Facebook. Feel free to join if you wish!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Christmas Picture Prompts for the Projector

As I was introducing a few new pages to our overhead projector binder today, I decided the kids have show enough responsibility to begin moving the projector toward our regular board to begin tracing pictures. The kids wanted me to add some Christmas pictures for their prompts. I have long manila paper available for the students to sticky tack to the board and trace the objects from the transparency.

My students are expected to write about whatever picture they choose to trace onto their paper. You wouldn't believe how good they are when they think it might be their turn. :)

Here's a printable to share.
Christmas Writing Prompts for the Overhead

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Oceans in December

One of our K Teachers is doing a unit on Oceans the week after Thanksgiving because she's teaching the sound /o/. Although it seems a little strange to teach about the ocean about the time we're changing into winter weather, the theme covers a huge amount of GLE's, so I'm getting kind of excited about teaching it. I have never taught an ocean unit except in summer school with mixed age kiddos (K-2). Here are a few of the things I will be using in addition to the file of ideas I already have.


Hello Ocean Lapbook

Emergent Readers

Tons of ideas - I like the ideas for There was an Old Lady who Swallowed a Shell.

Shark Tangram

Sea Animal Sort
I have lots of land/air/sea animal manipulative freebies from Highlights that I can use to let the kids sort, graph, classify, etc. 

Theme Unit Ideas

What are your favorite ocean activities?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Those pesky numbers 11-20!!!

Every year, it's the same thing. The numbers 11-19 just don't fit the same rhythmic pattern that the numbers before and after seem to fit. I just finished testing number recognition (numbers in isolation) from 0-20 and the majority of the kids that were struggling weren't able to get 11-19. The most common mistake is calling the numbers with 'ty' at the end. For example, 12 is twenty, 13 is thirty, 14 is forty, etc.

Last year, I attended a math workshop in which the presenter was more than willing to seek out resources to help us meet our grade level expectations in any area we needed a little assistance. She sent me the following book and I sooo wish I would have remembered before I started teaching numbers 11-19. Now that I know exactly who is struggling, which happens to be 8 of my 22 students, I'm going to work with them in a small group to make sure they get these numbers memorized. Hopefully this book will help.

Here's a link to the mini books I'm going to use. There is a 7-day free trial.

We are also using HeidiSongs Jumpin' Numbers 11-30 DVD this year. We adore the number 17 Chicken Dance Song. :)

Do you have any fabulous ideas for teaching 11-19?

Monday, November 8, 2010

November is crazy hectic! :)

Please be patient! I promise to post more soon. This week we have Space Night, a CTA meeting, a building meeting, my hubby's birthday, and I'm leaving to go out of town for a conference for 3 days, so I have to get ready for a sub. Plus, I'm working on getting my son's birthday party plans finalized and invitations sent, several bow orders completed and still try to find time to love on my kiddos and hubby. :) Most days, I wouldn't have it any other way.

I don't want you to think I've absolutely abandoned my blog. :)

In other news, I just had two more projects funded on DonorsChoose this evening. If you've ever needed resources for your classroom, definitely check them out. I have had 10 projects funded since the beginning of last school  year and have gotten things like an iPod, a printer, a camera, a sand and water table, 5 Tag Readers and Tag Books, Take-Home Backpacks, tons of center activities, toys and things for my students with autism, etc. Tonight, my projects were for leveled readers and 27 books with CD's for my listening center. DonorsChoose and the generous donors have been a true blessing to my classroom. Take a peek.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Pumpkin Sink or Float Prediction Chart

My Kindergarten students love making predictions about anything and everything. So, we carried it over into making predictions about whether the pumpkin we picked at the pumpkin patch would sink or float. I had all of my students write their names in the column they were predicting. I had to use 3 pages stapled/taped together and mounted on construction paper. My students still write fairly large with markers. :)

Sink or Float

Pumpkin Sink or Float Graph

We had lots of fun today trying to decide whether or not our pumpkin would sink or float. Here's a graph I used with the kids. It is similar to the apple graph we used for our apple unit. I will add the prediction chart the kids added their names to later.

Sink or Float Pumpkin Graph

Monday, October 18, 2010

What are you learning about?

I would love to know what others are learning about right now. If you would like to see printables, links, ideas, pictures of certain themes, feel free to comment or email me to send ideas.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Play Doh Numbers

I was inspired by this post at Kindergarten...kindergarten to create these Play Doh Numbers printables. I also found the cutest font called Smiley Monster here. I let my three year-old work on these printables and she did well with the snakes and balls and working on one-to-one correspondence.

Play Doh Numbers

Pumpkin Number Line

I use this number line with my students to practice sequencing the numbers from 0-10. We color the pumpkins and the kids glue them in order on a sentence strip. It's great practice and the kids like taking them home. I have included a color copy, as well as, a black and white copy.

Pumpkin Counting Line_Color

Pumpkin Counting Line

The Pumpkin Patch Emergent Reader

Can you tell I can't live without DJ Inkers and Carson-Dellosa clip art? I have to say, I love their work!!! I know it's pretty obvious from all the printables that I create using clip art from one or both companies. I just purchased another set called Harvest Time, so I created this emergent reader to share.Our class is going to the pumpkin patch next week, so this will be a perfect fit for when we return. I hope you enjoy it, too!

Pumpkin Patch Emergent Reader

Monday, October 11, 2010

Toddlers and Technology

This weekend, I decided it was time to introduce my 3 year-old daughter to playing preschool computer games. She picked it up very quickly just like my son did when he was her age. I knew it probably wouldn't be too difficult for her because she navigates her way through my Droid finding 'her desktop' with all the memory and puzzle apps like she was born with the phone in her hand.  (Don't worry, I limit her exposure.)

Tonight, she begged me to let her type her name on the computer and she did it! I was so proud of her! She was pretty proud of herself, too! I know this doesn't seem like much to other moms & dads that are teaching their children how to do these things on a daily basis, but it's easy to lose perspective on how meaningful interactions can be between a parent and a child when you have Kindergarten students that come to school not knowing a single letter in their name, let alone how to spell, write or type their names.

Printable Reading Chart

I use a lot of emergent reader printable books in my Kindergarten classroom. Since most of the readers have text that is familiar to the students, I like to reward the kids for reading them to their parents and I like to keep the books at school for the kids to read to themselves or others.

Each time we read a book in the classroom, the kids take the book home and read it to their parents. Parents sign the book to indicate their child has read it to them. When the book is returned, I give the child a sticker for their reading sticker chart which stays in their binder until it is full. The book then goes in the child's book box with their whisper phone. When the chart is full, the child gets to visit the treasure box and gets to see the Principal for an extra treat.

I like to copy this on colored cardstock. I have copied it on construction paper, but the stickers don't stay stuck to the paper. I also like the durability of the cardstock.

Reading Sticker Chart

Thursday, September 30, 2010

A Peek Into My Classroom

I had good intentions to get some more printables added today, but yesterday, after watching an old episode of Hoarders, I decided that my file cabinet is WAY past due for it's not-so-regular appointment with the trash can. :) I'm pretty sure I haven't been through all of the files since I started collecting resources while I was in college. I've decided I may be a resource hoarder and it's time to break free free from the bulging files. It's like Mr. Incredible trying to fit into his belt. At any given moment, the belt could snap, fly across the room and put a light out. My file cabinet is ashamed of itself! Sucking all those useless resources in and all those way too old worksheets. It vows to be better and to fit back in it's original uniform. :)

So, in place of the printables, here's a link to some photos of my classroom last year. All of my photos from this year are on my school computer, but I'll work on getting them transferred soon. 

Enjoy a little peek into my home away from home. My classroom is in a trailer, but I've tried to make it cute. :)

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Environmental Print

I remember how excited I was when my son first 'read' the word McDonald's at age 3 and recognized a stop sign at age 2. I also remember my son cutting food labels out with our Parents as Teachers Educator and placing them inside a Cheerios cereal box book. (We still have this!) We immediately told him he was a reader and never looked back. Environmental print is not only useful for children but necessary for many reasons. I have found some resources that I think are useful in helping kids recognize environmental print. I hope you find something useful, too.

Environmental Print Alphabet Book

Tons of environmental print printables, songs, ideas

Environmental Print Book

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Apple Number Flip Book

I had so much fun I think I'm going to make all kinds of fall flip books. Here's one with apples!

My Apple Number Flip Book

Pumpkin Numbers Flip Book

I had fun creating this book today while my kids were in special classes. I plan to print the book on cardstock and then cut all but the pages in half, except the back page. I will then make sure the numbers and pumpkins are out of numerical order and bind the left side of the book (numbers) and bind the right side of the book (pumpkins). I will try to take a picture and add it later. For now, here is the printable if you'd like to use it.

My Pumpkin Number Flip Book

Little Readers/Emergent Readers

I really like free printables, can you tell? I especially like theme oriented little readers for my students. I teach in a rural school district and like most districts, money for additional resources is at a minimum right now. The printable readers work well for my students when we don't have enough regular book resources to go around. I adore Mrs. Meacham's site because there are great links for lots of printables.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Book It Printable Take Home Sheets

Our class will be participating in Pizza Hut's Book-It Reading reward program this year. We will be beginning the first of October and will continue through March. Our monthly goal for the kids to earn their pizza reward certificate is 10 books per month. If you are participating, please feel free to use these printables.

All of the graphics are from Carson Dellosa. You can find them here.  The title font is DJ Inkers DJ Framed.

Book It Charts

Apple Counting 1-10

Use red washable ink pads to let the students make a fingerprint apple that corresponds with the number of apples at the bottom of the page. Be sure to have them write the number of apples in the blank.

Counting Apples 1-10 Book

Apple Positional Words & Magnets

I can't wait to include a photo of the apple magnet positional page when we have it in action. My magnet was having a hard time staying glued to our laminating film. :) I will post a picture as soon as I can. Kids think these are magical!

Apple Magnet Positional Words

Apples Positional Words Math Ws

Sunday, September 26, 2010

I need your feedback :)

 I'm trying to decide how I want to include PDF files that I have created for my Kindergarten classroom. What do you think? Is using Scribd easy for you to download/print below? I would love any feedback you can give. I create a good majority of my own printables so that I can easily customize things for my classroom, but I don't want to upload a lot of files if this isn't easy for you, as well as, easy for me to use at school.

***We use these apples printables to make a headband after we've read the book Ten Apples Up on Top. The kids get to cut out as many apples (beanbags) as we were able to stack on their heads before the apples began to fall. We copy this printable onto red,  yellow and green construction paper. 
Apple Printable

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Alphabet Glass Pebble Magnets

I recently saw that someone used inexpensive glass pebbles with stickers on the tops for alphabet activities for their children. So, I searched and found a great tutorial to some adorable magnets with letters and super cute scrapbook paper. I can't wait to try these this weekend. Here's a link to the tutorial. If you decide to make these, be sure to send me a link in the comments section. I'd love to see what others come up with, too!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Nursery Rhyme Printables

Thanks to Vanessa at PreKinders for the absolutely fabulous nursery rhyme printables! I can't wait to print these for our daily reading binders. My students are going to love using highlighters, wikki stix and whisper phones to read these rhymes. I love that they are simple and focus on the text. I'm shocked that they are free!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Nursery Rhymes & Coloring Pages

This year I have decided to add a few nursery rhymes and fairy tales to my Reading/Writing units. It seems like so many little kiddos don't know a lot of rhymes that they can recite from memory and I thought this might help.

I stumbled across the following sites and they have lots of printables. I was specifically looking for a printable for The Three Little Kittens for our Reading Binders, but thought some of these were cute, too.

Coloring Pages

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Counting 11-20

Last year I attended a math workshop at our nearest Regional Professional Development Center and we were discussing how many students have difficulty learning the numbers 11-19, specifically. The presenter was kind enough to research a few things and she came up with this book for 11-20. I hope it will come in handy for some of you, too. If you aren't already a member, you can sign up for a free 7 day trial to print the booklet.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Printable Alphabet Sounds Photo Cards from Lakeshore

I love using real pictures when teaching Kdg. students. I adore cutesy graphics, but find that real photos are typically easier to identify. These freebies from Lakeshore would be a wonderful resource for parents, too.

Reading Strategies Cards

I just found these reading strategies cards at Pre-K Pages. I plan to print them to use in our book boxes. I may not even cut them apart.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

PBS Western Theme

I’m looking for western fonts that I might use for our School wide Positive Behavior Support (PBS) theme for next year.
I really like Madfont and Pointedly Mad. I will probably use one or both of them with my Cricut Expression to cut out lots of letters for this year.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

The Daily 5 in Kindergarten

A friend recently introduced me to the book The Daily 5 by Gail Boushey and Joan Moser at a conference we were attending. I had heard of the book in conversation, but never had the chance to look at it. After reading the introduction, I was hooked. My principal purchased the book for our school and I'm currently reading it. I am now on the lookout for all kinds of information pertaining to how to implement The Daily 5 in my Kindergarten classroom.

You can purchase this book at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and many other book stores.

Here are a few links I found interesting.

Resources: (Daily 5 Log)



Yahoo! Group:

Friday, March 19, 2010

Tons of thematic activities

I like the site Making Learning Fun for all the wonderful thematic printables they offer for free. I am going to print the Easter File Folder printable to assist my kiddos who are still having trouble reading color words.


Photo Source: Making Learning Fun

Letter C and caterpillar activities

Confessions of a Homeschooler has the cutest activities for the letter C and other activities with a caterpillar theme.
caterpillar graphing
Photo source: Confessions of a Homeschooler

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Lovely spring printables and activities

Check out the super cute Spring Tot Packs from 1 + 1 + 1 = 1. Too cute! I can’t wait to use them next week during our unit on spring.

Spring Tot Packs

Photo source

Sewn baggie storage

I love this idea and and it looks so colorful! I think this would work perfectly for all our plastic play money, too. Great for sorting, as well!

Alphabet Resource Printables

I am loving the Homeschool Creations site. They also have some wonderful printable alphabet resources.

Color Matching Cards

I love the free color matching cards at Homeschool Creations. I am going to print these and laminate them for a beginning of the year pocket chart activity.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


I am finally getting around to creating and maintaining an educational blog. My main goal for this blog is to have an online version of all the things I seem to keep taking back and forth to school each day. :) My web site is blocked at school, so I also need a way to save my links, ideas and resources that I can easily access. I hope you find something you can use, too!