Winter sound boxes!

Hi friends!

Have I told you that one of my favorite things about the Christmas season is ABC Family movies?! So, I have this favorite Christmas movie from my childhood that is about a mannequin from a department store coming to life and she starts to date the family's dad. (The mom had died previous to the beginning of the movie) Anyway.. I can NOT for the life of me figure out what movie it is. Any takers?! Anyone have a clue what movie it is?? I've Googled it and nada!

So we've begun the all the fun Christmas themed things I have in my classroom. My kids FINALLY got to read "Pete the Cat Saves Christmas" (they've been dying to read it since they discovered it on my shelf) and the lights and tree are up in my classroom! 

I like to change up the sound boxes I have in my teacher table. We're working *really* hard on stretching words out and listening to each sound in the word. My kids are getting really good at it thankfully and I've got some budding little readers at bay!

I created these little cute sound boards that will go along with Christmas or Winter themes for CVC and CCVC, CVCC words if you want to snag them up! {for free!}
We were working on the -it family, can you tell?! This was one of my favorite words that my kids came up with- ha! If only they knew! 

{click on the picture to snag them up!}

I would love to know if you grab them! Hope you can use them in your class!


DIY Advent Calendar!

So now that Thanksgiving is over, I've got Christmas on my mind!

This is the first year that my four year old will *really* understand what Christmas is about. We've been talking about how it is Jesus' birthday and I really want her to understand that Christmas isn't just all about gifts and Santa and elves (although we'll do all that fun stuff, too!) but that it is a season of giving.

My first two years of teaching I worked in a private Christian school. I would always go to the mall and pick a boy and girl angel from the Salvation Army's Angel Tree. My class would donate money or gifts toward the child's wishes. We bought bicycles, games, clothes and a lot more! I loved teaching my students about giving of themselves and compassion for others. They were only 4 and they really seemed to get it.

So now that my little girl is 4, I want to reinforce the same in her! We were in the car the other day and she said "The peace that passes understanding is in your heart with Jesus" made this momma proud! So, this year for our advent calendar we are doing "Random Acts of Christmas Kindness" or "RACK"-ing. I'm so excited to bless others and my child with the gift of giving! I read a lot of blog posts about it last year, and I'm so excited to incorporate it into our Christmas traditions for years to come!

First things first, we needed an Advent calendar. I had an old picture frame sitting in the garage, so I spray painted it.
The inset piece of it was ugly, so I covered it with some chevron fabric (from Hobby Lobby)
I found some *awesome* little mini- rick rack in the ribbon section at Hobby Lobby and hot glued 4 strips to either side of the frame so that I could hang the envelopes on them.
I slid the chevron-covered back piece on and the clipped on the envelopes. (Mini clothespins and little paper sack both from Hobby Lobby)
I had some green and red sparkly scrapbook paper (also from Hobby Lobby) that I cut into circles with my Cricut. A circle cutter would do the job, too! I made some labels for the Avery 2" circle labels and printed them out. I love how it turned out!
{here's a little close up of the labels}

If you want to snag the labels to make your own Advent calendar, here they are!
 {be sure to click on both pictures to get all the numbers}
graphics from Ashley Hughes, DJ Inkers, and KPM doodles.

I will post more about our RACK-ing journey as December goes on and what is actually IN each bag of the Advent calendar!

Cyber Monday Sale!

I hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful and you've enjoyed some quality time with your families! My little sis is in town so I've been spending a lot of time with her! Oh and she's been helping me cut out all that lamination I brought home with me {bless her!}

I'm sure you've heard by now- TpT is having a BIG sale! My cart is already loaded and ready for checkout. Go check it out this Monday and Tuesday. My store is on sale 20% off and TpT is throwing in another 10% if you use the code "cmt12". 

Don't forget about the new Christmas stations I just posted- they would be great for the next few weeks until Christmas!

I got together with some of my bestie blogging buddies for this linky- go check out their stores, too!

A Feast of Thanks!

We had a lot of fun the past week or so getting to do some Thanksgiving activities!
It really feels like school just started a few weeks ago! My how time flies when you're having fun!

We have a little feast in Kindergarten every year- we have 6 Kindergartens so we partner up and one class is the Native Americans while the other are the Pilgrims. 
We started the feast by making cranberry sauce with the kids- they love listening to the pop as the cranberries cook! While I would've loved to graph and extend this activity, we just didn't have time! ahhhh! Story of my life, right?! Maybe Monday! I know a few of my kids who certainly *won't* remember their distaste for cranberry sauce!

We finished up this place mat craft and writing activity from Kelley over at Teacher Idea Factory. Didn't they turn out great?! Snatch her little packet up and file it for next year!
After our feast I presented each one of my kiddos with a little thankful note- this is the second year that I've done this for my students, and I absolutely love giving them out! All week we've discussed the people and things that we are thankful for. They don't realize how much they all mean to me! Even the little stinkers! I snagged these letters from Erica.
 I know all you teachers out there are already thinking about Christmas. If you're looking for some awesome stations go check my new packet out!
{click the picture to take a look!}
And because I don't post pictures of my students on here- I'll leave you with one of me in my hat! {I cropped out my Pilgrim teammate- I know she would kill me if I put one up of her! haha!}

Late Thanksgiving planning?!

Hi friends!

I am NOT out of school after tomorrow {like I'm hearing SO many of you are!}- we still have work Monday and Tuesday! So if you're still looking for a cute little "something" to do with your kids, I had completed this sight word book for my kids to add to their book bags this week. {sorry I forgot to share earlier!}
Short and sweet! Click on the picture to snag it up!
{turkey graphic from Lita Lita- isn't it adorable??}


Veteran's Day

How are you guys getting along with this time change?!

This time change is always so hard for me! See.. I'm a morning person. Yes, I'm on of "those" people. I like waking up early and drinking my coffee before anyone else is awake (except Luke... I swear he hears me switch the light on in the kitchen before I even do) 

I have never slept past 11 am. I swear! Not even in college! Now I wake up around 6:30 or 7 on the weekends "sleeping in" so when Mr. daylight savings time takes my morning time away it makes me grumpy! ha! ;) 

It may only take a month for me to adjust!

While I'm still adjusting, my kids have been getting along perfectly! They've been little bundles of energy lately. It's started to get cold here and you teachers know what weather changes do to our little darlings! Cray cray!

{side note real quick... if you have YouTube access at your school you MUST check out "kids zumba- AWESOME indoor recess!}

Anyway- my kids are cray cray, Mrs. Alderson is still cranky because I can't adjust to the time change, and we're whipping out cute little soldiers left and right today. I introduced Veteran's Day yesterday. We made a bubble map about soldiers and wrote about some characteristics or soldiers.

Today we finished up with Miss Kindergarten's  wonderful Veteran's Day Craft!
 {A soldier is helpful and kind.}
{A soldier is a hero and kind.} {A soldier is helpful and strong.}
Didn't they turn out adorable?! And my kids had some wonderful conversations about what soldiers do for our country! Thank you Hadar for this wonderful activity! I know Veteran's Day has  passed- but she has writing prompts for Memorial, Labor, AND Veteran's day included in her pack. Go check it out!

Thanksgiving... already?!

You guys- do you realize how close we are to Thanksgiving?!

I'm linking up with one of my favorite bloggers today for a fun Thanksgiving linky party!!
{click the button to see other bloggers' recipes!}
 First things first, DeAnne is hosting a Holiday recipe linky! Who doesn't need new ideas when getting ready for Thanksgiving??

In our family, I'm usually in charge of the turkey- my in laws aren't big cookers (is that right?!) and so I was designated official turkey baker 4 years ago! Here's a picture of my very first turkey- it turned out great, right?! I was SO nervous, and my turkey that I had put in the fridge for 4 days before Thanksgiving had not defrosted completely!! I had to finish thawing it the morning of...and we didn't end up eating until around 8 but it was worth the wait!
I got the recipe from the 2003 November issue of Bon Apetit. I looked through a billion magazines my mom had and the internet and cook books for weeks before I decided on one! It turned out great, so I've kept the recipe the same since!
Click {HERE} to get the recipe!

P.S. I've been working on some Christmas/ winter themed stations and have been using a LOT of my friend Tessa's digital papers. Have you seen them?! She is new to creating digital products and they are *fabulous*!
Here's a sample of one of her papers in my new pack-in-the-works! LOVE! Go download them. now! They're free! Click HERE to snag!


Season wheels!

Happy Saturday friends!
I *definitely* woke up at 6:10 this morning panicking because I overslept! Ha! For some reason I had it in my head that it was Tuesday for the first few minutes I was awake. Thank goodness I was wrong! I had to check my phone to double check, and by that time going back to sleep was hopeless!

We've been studying seasons this week in Science and we've being doing a lot of fun things with them! We started out by singing the 4 seasons song on YouTube and the Seasons rap- I taught my kids the sign language to each season which they LOVE with the songs because there are parts where it gets really fast and you know it gets hilarious when you're trying to do motions super fast!

We studied a season a day and completed this season wheel over the week:
We painted each kid's hand and stamped it 4 times. We used cotton balls for Winter and wrinkled up tissue paper for Spring, Summer, and Fall. 

My teammate has been doing these season wheels for most of the time that she has been teaching, so it was definitely not my idea! I'm crediting you here, Steph! 
They turned out adorable, and it really enforced the weather of each season!

We're working on a display for the hallway, but we've only got the winter part completed so far:
 Each of our kiddos completed a snowman with their name. My snowman was 10 miles long! (Mrs. Alderson sure is a lot of letters!)
Hopefully next week I will be back with an update on the rest of the display!!

Work in progress!

Ok, maybe I can be better about taking pictures at school now that my formal eval is over!

We're all over the place this week- we'll be starting some Thanksgiving fun next week so now we *might* be finishing up some Halloween stations that I didn't quite have time to do before Halloween (oops!)
We've been focusing on patterns in Math: They each had a little baggie of 12 candy corns and could choose to do the patterns we have learned so far (AB, AAB, ABB) as long as they could justify the type and label it. *Most* of my sweeties did really well- there are definitely a few that I need to reteach it to!

This is an awesome station activity all year- especially for intervention or for your kiddos who need a little extra support with letter recognition. You can't see very well in this picture, but that's a Halloween bucket- I found it at out grocery store for 75 cents for 2 right after Halloween! Score! Obviously, you could use any kind of a bucket (or stocking during Christmas!) but all the kids do is pull out a letter and find it on the paper. I got this printable from Little Miss Glamour Goes to Kindergarten- go snag one for yourself!
We're working on a super cute and FUN season wheel that I will have more pictures of this weekend when it's complete- we're doing a season a day, so it's taking us all week to complete!

p.s. Have you seen these adorable reminder signs from Lyndsey at A Year of Many Firsts?! I'm Loving the "wash your hands" reminder- the one in my room is definitely not as cute as Lyndsey's, and hers is free! Go snag them up from her blog!


Happy Saturday friends!
I'm linking up with Farley over at Oh' Boy 4th Grade for Currently!
 Getting my guns up today for the Tech/UT game!!
Oh, and we got a Garden Ridge in Lubbock- soooo excited!! I haven't had time to go yet, but I know it's going to be trouble when I do!

And...the reason I haven't showered yet is I've been working on finishing up and uploading my new Thanksgiving packet to TpT this morning! I had to stay focused until it was complete!
There are 12 Math and Literacy stations, a glyph, and graphic organizers to supplement your Thanksgiving unit. It's $9 in my store, but for this weekend it is only $7, so grab it up and get ready for the Thanksgiving season!!

Now... I'm off to get ready for the game! :)
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