I hope everyone had a fun fourth of July. I have to be honest I am exhausted and we have another event to go to tonight with my family. We are going to the Detroit Symphony Orchestra at Greenfield Village (another must see place if you come to MI). Anyways, Cara is hosting Favorite Pins Friday. Link up here. Here are a few of my fav pins from this week.

Pete the Cat and his Four Groovy Buttons.

Pete the Cat and His 4 Groovy Buttons Chocolate Covered Pretzel Rods

Board Books turned into chalkboards.
Beat-up board book + chalkboard paint = Portable Mini-chalkboard
I have pinned this one a few times so obviously it is a favorite. www.letterschool.com I must admit I have not tried it out yet and unfortunately I don't have any I-pads to use in our classroom yet. We were suppose to get some and I am not sure if that is still in the process or not.
App for handwriting.  Supposed to be good - need to try it.This last one was Ready Teacher. I am looking forward to finding some time to try this one out as well, but it looks like there are a lot of great books read by celebrities to choose from.

Pinner said:  An online library of children's picture books read by professional narrators and complemented with original soundtracks produced by former Sesame musical director Robby Merkin. This site is a must checkout!



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Happy 4th of July! We are having some friends over for a BBQ, beanbags, and a bonfire and possibly some fireworks to celebrate Matt and my 4th Anniversary. Before all the festivities start Ethan is taking a nap and I am catching up on reading some blogs.

Anyway, I am participating in Cara's Throwback Thursday. I did this with my little ones this past year and they loved digging for the dino bones in the sand. Have a great 4th of July!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Dinosaur Dig

I saw this on another blog and thought it looked like a lot of fun for the kiddos. Buy some dog bones and on the blog I saw she spray painted them white, but I had an almond color spray already so I used that. I sprayed them and then added numbers and letters to the bones. You put them in the sand table and the kids hunt them out. I made a recording sheet for the students too. This way they can collect the bones they get and then record their findings. I will have the kids use bingo markers to record their findings.

I totally forgot about these until Erica over at Sprinkles to Kindergarten shared her block task cards. These are some task cards for how to use a book and magnet puzzles that my kids love from Melissa and Doug.  I have made some similar cards for building Mr. Potato Head. You can get that here Visuals are so useful for all students, but especially your special needs students. The more visuals the better! Enjoy and have a fun Wednesday!
Happy 4th of July too! It is Matt and my 4th Anniversary tomorrow. Where has the time gone?! We are going to be celebrating with family and friends with a BBQ which I am looking forward too!

Check out these lego task cards here. 

This past week Ethan and I had some fun trying out some of the many pins I have pinned to try with him.

First, we tried bath paint.
You need baby shampoo (4 squirts), corn starch (1tbsp), water, (1-2tsp) and food coloring (1-2 drops) and just mix it.

I got the recipe from team dischinger

Ethan loved it. He was surprised that the color showed up on the tub. It washes away super easily, which is great!
We also made some sidewalk paint.  

For the sidewalk paint all you need is 1 part water, 1 part cornstarch and a drop of food coloring.

The recipe came from All Things Simple

He also loved this. We only did one color because I wasn't sure if his attention would last or not. It lasted longer than I anticipated.
For my students at school I made Velcro popsicle sticks. Super easy. We will see if they like them. I got the color popsicle sticks from Lakeshore and the Velcro at Hobby Lobby. The idea came from Tot Treasures

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

I also made a corresponding worksheet of what they can create with the sticks. Some of my students will need some guidance with that.
I also made the birthday pencils I give each of the students. I used my Cricut to cut out the balloons and just cut two slits and add the pencil.

Have a great Monday!

I am linking up with Leigh at The Applicious Teacher

Small Group is a HUGE part of our day and when I taught Kindergarten it was too. My small group time is centers. For my little ones (2.5-3) it is about 8 minutes per small group center and for my older ones (3-6 years old) it can be up to 20 minutes per center.

I have three centers: language/ academic (my center), fine motor center (my aides) and social or play center. The kids rotate through each center. Unfortunately, I don't have a picture of my center board, but this is what it looks like, but this is the idea.

Each group consists of 3-4 students (I have 12am and 12pm). The kids love the routine and learn to look at their picture and move to their designated area. I use a timer to signal when the center is over.

At my center (academic/language) we either play a game, do an emergent reader book, or some other type of academic activity. I adjust each of the activities to each group and that means sometimes multiple activities that are similar. I also use visuals for cut, paste, trace, write, color, etc. from boardmaker.

Sometimes to get my students to the center I will use a first/ then card or use a transition object. You can get that here.

At the fine motor center they may practice their IEP fine motor goals, do an art project, or work on lacing, using tongs, etc.

The social/play center is where they can play in the rice table, kitchen, legoes, etc.

When choosing what group starts where I try to keep that the same. I also know what students need to work for the play center and that group starts the fine motor center, then me, then play. It is a big motivator. Certain students that can handle fluctuating groups may be put in a different group depending on the skills I am working on or if a group has a couple of kids missing on that day, but most of the time the groups stay the same. Early finishers at the fine motor table get to play with puzzles and magna doodles or something else that can be done at a table. My early finishers get to play in the sensory bin or I rotate different toys in and out that work on skills that coordinate with the theme or what we are learning that week.
Whew! That was a  lot of information! I am looking forward to reading what others do during small groups. They are such an integral part of the day because this is when my aid and I can really focus in on what each of my students need specifically. The work chosen is challenging, but not too hard because I don't want them getting too frustrated and upset. The activities done also coordinate with their IEP goals.

Well, I hope this provides you some new ideas to try and I am hoping to find some
new ideas myself. Happy Sunday!

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