Thursday, September 29, 2016

Two Hoots & A Holler: Ff is for Field trip, Fingerprints, Feet, and FUN!

Hoot #1
Last week went on our first field trip! We went to the Memphis Zoo! Boy, it was hot, but that did not stop these awesome kiddos from enjoying the day! The day was filled with fun and plenty of laughs!

 Hoot #2
One of our focus letters this week is the letter Ff.  After the zoo, we decided to tie in our letter with the zoo.  Ff is for Fingerprint Giraffes and Footprint Measurement!  
We couldn't go to the zoo without doing a little art project.  We just love giraffes! As a salute to them, we made fingerprint giraffes!

We also talked about all of the footsteps that we took as we walked the zoo.  We had the opportunity to tie in our zoo experience with the letter Ff and math!  We ended the lesson with a little footprint measurement. We used cubes, paper clips and round counters to measure the length and width of our feet!
 I love Ashton's face in this picture as he is using the number line to make sure that he writes the correct number. 
This Week's Holler...
This week we are hollering at Melissa over at The Husky Loving Teacher.  She loves teaching and her husky, Shilah! Shilah is a beautiful Siberian Husky who serves as her classroom mascot.  Her latest blog post is all about Books Teachers Love,  and we are so in LOVE with her books and activities she shares.  She has an awesome rhyming activity to go with Goodnight Goon just in time for Halloween!  Rhyming is such an important skill for kinders to know.  Thanks Melissa for being so dedicated to teaching and helping other teachers!  You Rock!!  
The Husky Loving Teacher

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Two Hoots and A Holler: The Princesses and the Kinders

Hoot #1
We have been busy with a lot of fun activities in our class.  We wanted to share a few of the students' favorite things that they have done.  We love that our students love learning and are excited to come to school every day!  

We have been learning about 2D shapes and sorting.  Students loved being able to sort their own shapes, and pick which one was their favorite shape.  You can find this activity in our Back to School packet on TPT.  

We have been blessed this year to share an IPad cart with our first grade teachers.  We are so excited to have this opportunity to put technology in the hands of our students daily!  Our students are loving the fun, educational apps, but they beg us to do Reading Eggs!  If you have never used Reading Eggs in your classroom, we highly suggest that you check it out!  Students LOVE this web based learning game.  They are so excited to move to the next level.  Check out how happy they are...

Hoot #2
Lake Cormorant Middle School celebrated homecoming last week.  The homecoming court princesses were invited to visit our school and spend some time with our kinders.  

 I had these lovely beauties come visit my room!! These girls are Jitterbugs from several years ago (once a Jitterbug, always a Jitterbug) and now they are on the Jr. High Homecoming court! Anna and Luz Elena, you are both beautiful from the inside out!                                                                                        
They even stayed to read a book to my class! Of course, all of the girls in my class were just awe struck to have these girls spend time with them.  I think even a few of my boys blushed.
Everyone enjoyed this experience, and our girls talked about it for days!  The boys were in awe too, they just don't like to admit it!

 We even had another former student of Walls visit with us, Aniya (in the lime green dress).  Aniya's mom is part of our kinder team!  Aniya and the other princesses looked stunning!
A big thank you goes out to Lake Cormorant Middle for allowing these beauties to visit our room!
This Week's Holler...
This week's holler goes out to Reagan Tunstall at Tunstall's Teaching Tidbits.  This lady has TONS of information and ideas for teachers to use in their classrooms.  I don't even know where to begin!  We love her Rise and Shine binders.  We have used them in our classrooms, and they truly help students grasp so many math concepts!  We also have her Sight Word Stick Centers on our TPT wish list.  Go check her out for some new, easy activities to do with your kinders!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Two Hoots and A Holler: Growing Gators

Hoot #1
We have been in school for 6 weeks now.  This year seems to be going by super fast!  We have seen so much growth from our kiddos in the past 6 weeks.  Thanks to ESGI, we have data to show that our class is growing and learning!  I know we have said it before, but if you do not have ESGI...What are you waiting for?!?!  It is the best thing that we have ever discovered, and we will never teach another year without it!  It gives you SO MUCH data to use to show parents, administrators, support staff, etc. to show how each individual child is progressing.  We did a letter screener in August.  With ESGI, it took us no time at all to get this done!  We want our students to know all letter names by Halloween, so we have been working really hard to meet our goal.  We reassess our students every other week with ESGI. We started off in August with our uppercase percentage at 63% and our lowercase percentage at 52%.  

Just look at the growth they showed and look at the awesome pie charts from ESGI!! We grew at least 20% in upper and lowercase areas in less than a month!  I am so proud of these kiddos!
Hoot #2
We have a new phonics program we are using this year in kindergarten.  We will begin using SIPPS this year.  We have been nervous to start a new program because we didn't know much about it.  Last week we were lucky enough to attend a training geared towards our grade level.  This training was very informative and helpful.  After sitting in this training, the nervousness has passed some, and the excitement is starting to set in!  This program has shown phenomenal growth in student's reading abilities.  Students must know at least 20 lowercase letters before beginning, so we have been working really hard to learn as many letters as we can.  
How many of you have used SIPPS in kindergarten?  Have any tips for us before we begin?  We would LOVE to hear from other teachers who have used this program.  Leave your comments below!!   
This Week's Holler...
This week's holler goes out to Karen Jones at Mrs. Jones's Kindergarten.  We are in LOVE with her new curriculum creations for kinders called "Little Thinkers".  It is a social studies curriculum designed just for kindergarten!  It is in her TPT store, and now that we have discovered her...a lot of her items are now on our TPT Wish List!  Go read and check out her blog to read more about all of the awesome ideas this lady has!  
Mrs. Jones’s Class

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Two Hoots and A Holler: Learning and Growing!

Hoot #1

This hoot is all about CENTERS!! These kiddos have gotten off to a great start this year! They have really enjoyed working interdependently. 

These Jitterbugs are hard at work putting the alphabet together! And look at those cute cards!! They were bought at Dollar Tree! I was able to buy enough for every station to have several!

Here is another center that Yaretzy is enjoying! She is putting numbers together 0-10. Yes, these were also purchased at Dollar Tree. Don't you just love that store?!

 Here is a student working with a Venn Diagram to compare curved and straight lines with each letter of the alphabet.

Isidro was so proud of his cutting skills!!

 Haley loved putting blocks together to create the letter "L".
Hoot #2
I thought that it was time to share our rooms! Things are still coming in daily, so we are unable to put things on the walls in our rooms for now. We have really gone back and forth about posting about our newly renovated classrooms.  I mean, all of August, we have seen wonderful posts of beautiful classrooms. We have been so jealous. But the more we thought about it, we thought why not. Everyday, we hear that teaching is hard. We hear "teachers can do anything". We hear "real teachers can teach under any circumstance".  We believe that!  And our students are growing each and every day!  We are so thankful for our new rooms, we wanted to share the adventure with you!

Of course, this is the first thing that went up in my room.....
Yes, this is my cabinet door to my old classroom.  My Jitterbugs created this so that I would have something old in my new classroom!

We are still waiting on our library cases to arrive. This is my library, for the moment.  Right now, I am teaching my students how to get books and return them to their proper spot.   

 This is our new board! They just arrived a week ago! Those are cork boards beside them.  All of the boards slide to provide TONS of storage behind them. Hopefully, our interactive projectors can be installed next week! 

 We received all new storage bins! These are my center stations and of course we could not leave out the Cadillac of all easels!!!
More storage areas for mats and mailboxes.

 This had more storage trays on it, but I have decided for it to house my book boxes this year.

We have basically have a blank slate. And as crazy as this sounds, it has been very nice to start our year with blank walls!  We add to it as we teach it and our students learn it.  Never in a million years, would we think we would ever say that!  We are usually in our rooms working all summer, so this has made us see things differently for sure!
We can't wait to show more as we get inspired to create!

   This Week's Holler . . .
This weeks holler goes out to Teaching Happy Hearts! Victoria has been a teacher for 24 years! To say that we have been stalking blogs to look at the design of teachers classrooms is an understatement!! We have been looking for a way to bring some bright colors into our room.  We loved Victoria's bright colors and that tent!! TOO CUTE!!! The seat sacks also added a punch of color throughout the room. When Victoria isn't busy in her room, she is busy presenting! Be sure to check out her blog!!