Thursday, October 29, 2015

Two Hoots and A Holler: Fall and Freebies are finally here!

Hoot #1
 According to the calendar, fall began several weeks ago...but here in Mississippi, it hasn't felt like fall at all! Well the fall weather is finally here!  I love everything about fall...the weather, the smell, the fall holidays, the colors outside, the leaves falling, teaching about fall, and the list goes on and on!  Fall is my (Jodi)  personal favorite time of the year.  I love Halloween, I would still dress up and go trick or treating if I wasn't too old!  I love going to the Haunted Houses and getting day, I will have to drag Jamie with me kicking and screaming.  In addition to learning about fall, we have been learning about spiders and bats in class, and it has been a lot of fun!  I had one student cry and scream because he didn't like spiders because they are scary!  He got so interested in spiders before the day was over, he was writing about it and making a book!  Now he says he loves spiders!  Haha  Every student made a book with a spider fact on each page.  We made a front cover, and published them in the hallway for others to stop and read!  

We talked about how spiders use venom to eat their pray, and Jamie's students even got to pretend they were a spider eating its prey.  They had a blast doing this experiment!  

Hoot #2 
We have been working hard to make sure that we have our letter units done each week to share with our team.  If we don't have it ready for them ahead of time, they come knocking on our door asking for it!  They motivate us to stay ahead and keep pushing!  So finally, we have posted 6, that is right...SIX, letter units to our TPT store.  Two of those are FREE!  We thought that in order for everyone to see what exactly the letter units have in them, we should have at least one free.  We got together and picked which letters have been some of our favorites so far...Jamie picked the letter Ii to be a freebie, and I chose the letter Nn.  Click on the pictures below to hop on over to our TPT store to grab these FREE resources!   

 Learning with Letters:  All About the Letter Ii
 Don't forget to like our Facebook page and check out our other units on TPT while you are there!  
 Learning with Letters:  All About the Letter Nn

This Week's Holler. . .
This weeks holler goes out to Amanda Wilp at The Primary Gal! Wow! That is the only word I can use to describe her blog.  If you teach 3-5, then she has anything that and everything that you would ever need. We personally have never taught these grades, but we have a Kinder teacher that just went to 3rd grade.  As soon as I stalked this blog, I ran down the hall to find my friend to tell her all about it. We are really interested in learning more about her "flipped classroom." We see a weekend project in our near future!

The Primary Gal

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Two Hoots & A Holler: What fun we have had!

Hoot #1
Well, it's back to reality for me! I know Jodi hooted about this last week, but I thought that it deserved a second one! I mean, it's not everyday a girl gets to go to the happiest place on Earth!  I was able to spent the week with my entire family (my parents, my brother and his family, and my immediate family) at Disneyworld!! All 13 of us piled in two cars and made the long drive.

A big thanks goes out to my mom and dad (to the right side of me) for planning this whole trip and making it happen!

Of course I could not leave without stopping at Seuss Landing!!!

We were even able to trick-or-treat while we were there!  Even the adults were encouraged to trick-or-treat! So we could not show up with out dressing up!
It was a lot of fun and very little sleep! Even with all of that fun, I still missed my Jitterbugs. I called them a couple of times and sent them pictures.  Of course, Mickey sent all of them special treats for being so well behaved while I was gone!

Hoot #2 
We absolutely love that we both have a classroom full of students who LOVE to learn!  Our students are so excited to do activities in class.  When they know its "center time"  they actually cheer and get excited!  Here are a couple of activities that our students have enjoyed doing so far this year (that we haven't already blogged about). . .

 The shape man is finally up!  Students loved sorting 2D and 3D shapes and piecing him together.  Students counted how many of each shape we used and helped to write the number on the labels.  We still aren't through with him!  Next, we will label our shape man using interactive writing!  Students are going to help write sentences using sight words and shape words to label him!  They LOVE seeing their work hanging in the room! 

 OH! How we have worked so hard to learn to draw a person!  We have practiced and practiced drawing people because we don't have arms and legs coming out of our heads, for goodness sakes!  Look at the beautiful work they did when drawing themselves!  We were very proud of their artwork and the details they added so early on in the year! 
Students then clapped and counted how many syllables their name has and placed that many claps on their paper.

This Week's Holler...

This weeks holler goes out to Allison Stuckey at "Stuckey
In Second." She is a second grade teacher from Indiana.  She has tons of units on her blog. We loved her "Back To School Book Favorites."  Allison has reached 2 milestones with TPT! What a great accomplishment!  That is definitely something that Jodi and I have on our bucket list. We know we still have a bit to go, but sure dream of that day, and we look up to those who have accomplished those goals! Thanks for all you do!

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Two Hoots and a Holler: Farm and Fun!

Hoot #1
Last week was the end of our farm unit.  We LOVE the farm unit, and we were so happy to have brought it back into action after it went MIA for the past 3 years.  We forgot how fun learning about farm animals can be!  We ended our unit with a farm breakfast where the kids got to help us cook scrambled eggs and pancakes.  The kids also got to make their own butter and chocolate milk.  We had bacon too, because what breakfast is complete without bacon, right??  I think the kids enjoyed eating it as much as they enjoyed making it!  Here are some highlights from our farm breakfast...

Here the kids are listening and watching how to crack and scramble an egg!  Each kid got to crack 2 eggs and scramble them.  Jamie brought her own style to the breakfast by singing the directions to them..."Watch me tap, watch me crack, crack!"  haha
Who knew cracking eggs could be so much fun?
It was so cool! Some of them said my mom would never let me do this!  haha

Some really took the cracking it open part serious...didn't want to get the shell in the bowl!  
 They are mixing up the pancake batter in this picture. 
 Getting all of those lumps out is hard work!
They discovered that shaking and making butter is the hardest work of all!  They kept asking us, are we done yet? 
Hoot #2
This week I, Jodi, have had to fly solo because my partner in crime up and left Mississippi for a week!  Well, it is almost Friday, and I  managed to survive!  Of course all week long while I have been at school teaching, attending meetings, planning, AND working after school and before school, Jamie has been sending pictures left and right of her having a blast at Disney World! Yes, I am a little jealous....OK A LOT jealous! haha  All joking aside I am so glad Jamie got to have this get away with her family...she really deserved it and NEEDED it! Everybody needs to get away and have some fun at some point or another!   
Jamie representing Mississippi in her "Hey Ya'll" shirt while posing with Mickey and Minnie! She looks so happy!
 And of course she didn't let her glitter girls down by getting some sparkly Minnie ears!  They look great! 
Queen Jamie attended the Not So Scary Halloween Party 
at Magic Kingdom.  

Safe travels back Jamie!  
Can't wait to hear all about your adventures! 

This Week's Holler...
This week's holler goes out to Fran Kramer over at Kindergarten Crayons!  We have never had the chance to meet this wonderful, creative woman, but her blog is one of the firsts that introduced us into the blogging world!  Her blog has always been a go to when we needed an idea!  Her products on TPT are AWESOME, too!  Her most recent post on how to help kinders in the computer lab has some of the best ideas ever!  We are going to definitely use these ideas during our computer times!  Stop by her blog by clicking the button below to check her out!  
Kindergarten Crayons

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Two Hoots and A Holler:

Hoot #1
Yesterday officially ended our first 9 weeks of school!  We cannot believe 9 weeks has passed by already!  It has been a very busy kickoff to our year.  While we are busy testing report cards, sight words, and reading levels, we can't help but to think back on that first week that we met our sweet class.  It is absolutely AMAZING how much they have grown!  There is not one student in our classes that hasn't grown academically and socially!  This is the time of the year when we reflect back on what has happened so far in our classes, and we think about what has worked and what hasn't...ya'll know as well as we do, every class/student is different and we must change our teaching to meet their needs.  Incorporating more hands-on, sensory type of activities has benefited our students in many ways!  Our students LOVE school!  We have had several texts, letters, and emails from parents about how much their child loves school.  This makes our hearts smile to hear this!  Students who love school are going to be more motivated to learn. The only thing we have done different this year is added more developmentally appropriate activities in our classrooms!  In just 9 short weeks, it has had a HUGE impact on our much in fact, their parents even see the impact school is having on their child! 
That is what teaching is all about, guys!  It is having that rewarding feeling that you are doing something positive for each student in your class, it's that feeling of success when you know you have motivated children to want to learn, it's standing up for what you know is right for your class (and doing it), it's giving children opportunities that they may have never had, and most importantly it's allowing students to blossom in his/her own time by meeting THEIR needs (notice it says THEIR, not my needs, not what the curriculum needs, not what the test needs you to teach, not what someone needs to dictate for you to teach, it is THEIR as in the students).  Here is a recap of some of the things we have done so far this year...
Making shape pizzas and eating real pizza in our pajamas for the letter P!

Learning all about Hawaii for the letter H!

Hh is for handprints!

Making leis to wear while we learn about Hawaii. 

Chewing gumballs to see if we can blow a bubble for the letter G!

Lemonade and ladybug hats for the letter L. 

Hoot #2
While the end of our 9 weeks was drawing near, we had a great visit from our local EMT's and fire fighters! It is fire safety month, so our local fire fighters and EMT's reached out to all of our kindergarteners, first graders, and second graders to teach them about fire safety.  Our kindergarteners loved seeing the fire truck and the fire fighter getting all geared up to go fight a fire!  The most interesting fact that our students learned, was there are girl fire fighters!  They thought that was the coolest thing ever! And of course, no fire fighter visit would be complete without each student getting a goody bag and their very own fireman helmet to take home!  
Striking a pose in front of the fire truck! 
One of our kindergarten students and fire fighters showing others how to stop, drop, cover, and roll. 

This Week's Holler. . .
This week's holler goes out to Claire Lynn Designs!  We snagged her business card at the blogger meet up in French Lick, IN.  Click the picture below to go to the website.  Our favorite is the state teacher shirt!  That will definitely be on our Christmas list this year!  There are definitely LOTS of cute, customized shirts to meet every teacher's style!  These would make great teacher gifts for your child's teacher or principal gifts!  
Go check it out, you will be glad you did!


Thursday, October 1, 2015

Two Hoots and A Holler: We Love Our Tribe

Hoot #1
Last week, we really focused on the letter P and who better to celebrate P with than Pete the Cat!! Jodi's Rockstars loved making their Pete the Cat Glyphs inspired by Deanna Jump's Colorful Cats Unit on TPT. 

But one would have to ask if Jodi enjoyed it as much!?! haha!! No, she is just mad at Jamie for taking a pic with her in it while she was in her pajamas and pigtails!
You can also see the pirate hat that the students made as we celebrated the letter P.

While the Rockstars were busy with Pete, the Jitterbugs were busy making pizza. This was not just any pizza, this was a shape pizza! These kiddos loaded on the toppings and then counted "how many" of each shape that they used! When they finished making their shape pizza, they dined on all things that begin with the letter P (pizza, popcorn, purple juice, pretzels...the list goes on and on)!

Hoot #2
This next hoot is one of my favorites!
Yep, that us, but check out our shirts!! I recently saw these shirts on two of our friends, Dana at Common to the Core and Greg at The Kindergarten Smorgasboard, and I had to have them! This shirt speaks volumes!!!!!  I knew just who to go to....Dana!!! That's right! Dana also makes shirts! So I contacted her and before you know it, I was surprising Jodi with a shirt too! We loved them! I can't wait to see her next creation that I just ordered! You can check her out on Instagram or Facebook at Vinyl by Dana! She has a great selection and is swift to deliver.

This week's holler...
This weeks holler goes out to Breanna at A Pinch of Primary! This girl has moved from 5th grade to Kindergarten! What a jump!! From the looks of it, she is doing a great job! We love some of the ideas that she used in her open house.  We are definitely going to steal of few of her ideas! She has been blogging since she was in college! We can honestly say, blogging was probably the last thing that we were thinking about when we were in college! Haha! What dedication! Check out her pics and her new blog design!

A Pinch of Primary