Monday, December 29, 2014

Ponderings for the New Year

Yes I am still here.  Maybe I will keep this up this time.  Maybe I won't.  There is soooo much out there for teachers compared to just 5 years ago that many times I feel like I don't have much to contribute.  With facebook, pinterest, teacherspayteachers and all of the fabulous blogs with ideas and products I wonder if I what I share might not be original. 

I will just share my thoughts for awhile.  Today I was cleaning out my bookshelves and ran across a copy of NAEYC "Developmentally Appropriate Practices for Early Childhood Programs."  When I first started teaching I spent a lot of time with this organization and this book.  It still shapes a lot of the ways that I teach.  I am at a private school.  We have adapted the common core to fit our goals, but we haven't adopted it out right.  We can do that.  It's nice.  There are parts of the goals that challenge me to be a better teacher and there are other parts that make me think, "Yes, we can teach these things to a kindergarten child, but SHOULD we?"  And I am seeing these practices trickle down to preschool and it worries me.  It worries me that we will drill these concepts instead of teach understanding.  It worries me that we present subject matter that they are just not ready to understand.  It worries me that our environments are no longer full of wonder and exploration.

"For children to understand fully and remember what they have learned, whether it is related to reading mathematics, or other subject matter areas, the information must be meaningful to the child in context of the child's experience and development." (DAP - NAEYC)

This is my goal for teaching in this new year.  Making learning meaningful.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Sing Sing Sing - Something a little different on TPT

I love, Love, LOVE to sing with my little kinders!  It is such a wonderful tool to help them transition, learn new concepts and just get some wiggles out.  Years ago I created a CD with several songs on it that I have written.  It didn't sell very well (I am not a good business woman) so I stuck all the CDs in my basement and gave them out as Christmas gifts every year.  Until now ... I just figured out that TPT accepts mp3 songs so I opened a store!  Yes me!  I did it!  I think ... I hope ... technology is a friend and an enemy.

Anyway, check out my store and get a FREE song ... just for you ... FREE!  It's a song that I use a lot to transition to snack time or lunch time.  If you like it there are a few more.  I will be adding more in the weeks to come, so check back often.  Follow me ... rate me (be nice, I'm sensitive) ... enjoy the songs!!!!  Just click on the picture below to get to my store.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Random pictures from the beginning of the year

I have started a new blog that is just for the families in my class and I haven't been back here since so ... here are some pictures of what we have been doing.

Here is a picture of our class mascot, Freddy, having snack with us.

Freddy loves Froggy!

 Look at what I found at the St. Louis Teacher's Recycling Center.  Some sort of medical supply.  I call them Wacky Stackers and we use them for counting, sorting and measuring.

 Collage Books!  Every week for homework I send home a letter page. The children return it covered with items, pictures and words that begin with that letter.  Then I put them all in a book.

 Here it is!  My classroom circa 2012.  I completely lost the month of September.  I have a great class this year.  Hopefully I will find time to post more about what we are doing.

Friday, August 24, 2012

OK Totally haven't posted in ages. I think of fun things then never do it. I have TONS of pictures that are still on my camera from last year. I mean to post them with something clever then I never do it. Hit a bit of a brick wall last year and still trying to recover. Have a great story. It reminded me why I LOVE kindergarten. I have a wonderful new crop of kinders this year. We are only in our first week and they are doing very well with the new routine. Yesterday we we reviewing the schedule for the day. (They all want to know when we are going to have snack, recess, lunch, etc. - constantly) I told them about the specials in the afternoon and how after specials we would have math time. Before I could go on a little guy raises his hand "Mrs. Long Mrs. Long, do I have to take a bath or can I take a shower?" I stifled a giggle and said, "No honey, I said Math" "What's math?" Then we had a nice long conversation about what math is. I got a candle, some bath salts and some smelly salts from my secret pal today ... I think I would like bath time better than math too.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Stepping away from K for a moment

My son was a huge hit at a St. Louis Blues game not too long ago. I am on spring break now and I was able to figure out youtube. Check out the video. He is hysterical. This has absolutely nothing to do with kindergarten or education - just me being proud of my kid!

Let's Go Blue!!!!!!!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Easter (and Spring break) are Almost Here!

I had another great lunch with the St. Louis Blogging Ladies. Pictures to come soon.  In the mean time I have realized I don't really have an original idea.  All of my teaching ideas have come from other sources.  What follows are some great resources for Christian classrooms to use.

Here are some great books to read with your class ...

The Parable of the Lily: Special 10th Anniversary Edition (Parable Series)

The Berenstain Bears and the Easter Story (Berenstain Bears/Living Lights)

The Story of Easter (Trophy Picture Books)

The Story of the Resurrection Eggs in Rhyme & Song (Parenting)

I love the sight word book "Where Was Jesus" from Hubbards Cupboard.  There are some great craft ideas on this page as well.  Check out these Sun Catchers!

There are also some great songs at the bottom of the page.

Christian Preschool Printables has some great resources as well.  The picture quality that I have here isn't that great so click on the link to take a look.

Make your own Resurrection eggs ...

Easter memory match ... I just make one copy, cut them apart and use them in my writing center with Deedee Wills Writing Workstations for April.

Ok ... time for me to decide what I'm doing tomorrow.  Hopefully I'll have some pictures up soon.  If not, I know I'll have some time over spring break (3 MORE DAYS!!!!)

I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength!  Philippians 4:13

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Dr. Jean!

I got to see Dr. Jean last week and I left with my brain crammed full of ideas.  She has a great website full of wonderful ideas.  If you would like, check it out here.  She also has a blog with almost daily ideas.  My favorite were the cheers.  They are a great way regain control in a crazy classroom and it REALLY WORKS.  Here is a link for her cheer cards - CHEERS!

I thought I would include some pictures of other good ideas I have used in the classroom.  I have very few original ideas and I can't remember what idea is mine and what belongs to someone else, sooooo ... if you see your idea, let me know so I can give you credit.  I will probably have to put this disclaimer on every blog post.

Here is our Invisible I picture.   The children drew on white paper with white crayon and then painted over it with water color.  They thought it was absolute magic!

This was mixing a little blue and a little yellow (love this book).  I know a lot of people do this, but I just thought this picture was beautiful!