Friday, May 31, 2013

Five for Friday...Grandchildren...Camping....May 31, 2013

It is 3 weeks until summer school begins so I am attempting to take a break from all things school! It is not that easy, I am excited about the camping theme we are going to implement at summer school. I purchased a camping unit from 1-2-3 Learn Curriculum through Teachers pay Teachers and it has some great ideas!  In the meantime, I will do some field research by going camping!

Here's my FIVE this week with Doodle Bugs Teaching---
My husband and I have been scouting for camping spots, our ultimate goal is to camp in Denali Park, home of Mt. McKinley. We are going to begin the summer a little closer to home, down the road a little ways. My husband thinks "primitive" camping is the best, however, I am to that place in my life when I require a few luxuries when camping, namely.....toilets. Oh and an air mattress! Is that too much to ask? No it isn't and my husband is pretty agreeable to these luxury items. We are having a lot of fun just looking for the camping space, although some of the roads we meander down are a little rough!
There are toilets!
I have spent several days with my beautiful, awesome grandchildren and that always makes me happy! They keep you hopping! My daughter goes shopping by herself with them, but I have no idea HOW! They run in two different directions the minute they get loose!

We have had a week of sunshine and boy are we soaking it up! Even though I am  one of those "never tan" people, I am slathering on the sunscreen and enjoying every minute of it.
I had lunch this week with a couple of very good friends, we ate, laughed and talked for hours. One of my friends lives on a lake and has a nice view from her deck.
She served a delicious lunch along with a refreshing drink.

Most of the lake is thawed out, HOWEVER, the culvert under the railroad track is NOT!

 My friend's husband is a hard working and creative Alaskan........he's cutting through the ice one big block at a time!
OKAY! I'm calling that five! My grandbabies count as two! Next week, I plan  on doing some real camping (with toilets) and will begin to organize my summer school plans. I will be sharing more school stuff soon!  Until next time, Paula

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Five for Friday.....May 24, 2013...last Friday of the school year!

Whew! What a week! Full and busy, and it went very well. Thank you Doodle Bugs Teaching for this great idea of reflecting on the week.

1. I started the week with a "Personal day" off from school. I just lounged around and planned for summer school, so I would know what I wanted to pack. It was perfect because I got to rest up and be ready for the reminder of the week.

2. Field day was fun! The classes rotated between activities: hiking to the lake, relay race, cup stacking, fire brigade, Frisbee golf, parachute, rope tug and a picnic!

      Lake behind our school.....still has ice

  The hike to the lake

Stacking cups, the teachers had fun too!

Kinders tug o' war

3. Paperwork finished on time! Progress reports completed and sent home the day before the last day of school.  Checked out with my records specialist without a hitch. What a relief!

4. Packed up for ESY (summer school) and ready to go on the truck. Our school district chooses a school to have the program at, they send out a truck on the last day to pick up what we want to take for it. It is always a race to get it all ready to go by the pick up date! I have awesome assistants we helped A LOT in getting it altogether!!

5. Gave a bubble send off  to the kids until the last bus drove away!  Room put away and I am CHECKED OUT! I don't have to return until August!

and I am outta here! Woooooooooohoooooooooo!

with my car loaded!
Have a great week! Paula

Saturday, May 18, 2013

More task ideas...simple and fast

This is a continuation of the Creating Tasks segment.  There are a few more I wanted to share that are easy to put together. It also illustrates how presentation  makes such a difference to our kids!

This is the very first one I put together. Materials: oatmeal can, string, beads, duct tape.
First, punch a small hole in the bottom of the can, just big enough to thread the string through. Tie a knot so the string cannot come back out. Use a piece of duct tape to make the string as flat as you can. Second, cut a hole in the lid large enough for a stringed bead to go through. Third, cover the outside of the can with construction paper, laminating it first is even better. Velcro the beads to the outside of the can.

Skills: fine motor, hand/eye coordination, color identification, counting.

Another simple and fast task is setting up a puzzle:

These rectangle shape boxes with a short lip are invaluable! I am always digging these guys out of the trash.... box lids, water flats, ramen noodle boxes, there is no end to their uses! (sometimes at Wal-Mart I load one of these up with cans of vegies or whatever I'm buying) I orignally had a small box  on the left of the puzzle, to place the pieces in.  This format seems to work better because all the pieces can be seen.

I found this magnetic Sesame Street board at a thrift store for a dollar, it was all alone...I got my handy dandy box of magnet letters out and dug out close matches. I like to spread out the letters so we avoid frustration if it is taking too long. A fun variation is to hide the letters in a sensory table or box full of rice. As they find letters, ask them to tell you the name and/or sound it makes and match it on the magnetic board. Kids of all skill levels have fun with this one.
Mr. Potato Head! They love him but are not sure what to do with him. Providing  visual step by step directions is very helpful. They quickly learn how to put him together without them. 


Budding Blog.....linking opportunity

Magic Mistakes and  Mayhem shared this link,  it is a great opportunity for those of us with less then 200 followers to meet other bloggers! Answer these 5 questions and link to 
I (heart) Recess !

1. Why did you start blogging?
Initially I thought I would try it to see if I could make money! But that has changed and I am not making money but having fun connecting with other teachers and parents who share their knowledge.

2. What is your favorite subject and why?
Math skills! This is funny because math was my least favorite subject when I was in school. It was scary! Of course when I say math, I am talking about beginning skills, preschool-second grade is where I work at! Math can be taught using lots of hands on techniques.

3. Describe your teaching style.
Visual and hands on! I can't just stand there and talk. Flexibility is the keyword when  teaching kids, I want them to WANT to come back every day.

4. Give three interesting facts about you.
This is hard, because I don't think I'm that interesting! Here goes:
I have 3 lovely children and 2 beautiful, aweome, amazing grandchildren who are twins.
Our household has 2 dogs, 4 cats, a turtle and a white rat!
On my way to being a teacher, I have had many other jobs starting at age 15: waitress, housekeeper, nurse's aid, cooking at a restaurant and a school, store clerk in a convenience store and later at a grocery store, produce stocker, delivering newspapers, office jobs at a univeristy, a convenience store chain office and an auto parts warehouse. I learned important life skills from each one!

5. Do you have a TpT store and share the link if you do.
I do not have a store YET, I am still figuring out how it all works and learning from my fellow teachers!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Five for Friday.......May 17, 2013

So much for Spring! It is apparently avoiding Alaska this year, we are generally accepting of the cooler and snowy weather, but come on! It's mid May! Anyway, moving on to my five for Friday!
1. 4 more school days!

2. The kindergarten graduation is done! Everything went smoothly, I got to lead them in singing the "Counting by 5" song, the parents loved the slideshow we worked so hard on. Now we just need to keep them busy until next Thursday!

3. Turned in the last of the special education paperwork! wahoooooo!

4. I decided on my summer school theme and can now pack accordingly! It's going to be so much fun!

5. My husband and I are planning on a camping trip after school is out! (I hope it has quit snowing in a couple of weeks).

That's all I've got for now!

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Five for Friday...May 10, 2013

Thank you Doodle Bugs for this great idea! So my five for this week are:

We have 9 more school days left!!!!Woooooo!!!

Spring has FINALLY arrived in Alaska! The temps are reaching a high of 63, never mind that it is still a little icy in the mornings. The trees are budding out, most of the snow has melted with those shady spot exceptions.

Next week is our kindergarten promotion and the teacher and I finished the slideshow for the big event on Friday night! yea!  It was totally worth it to stay until 8 PM.

I lost 2.4 lb. this week! my next goal is to get into the exercising mode again, with the weather improving, I am thinking about walking outside everyday.

annnnnd....there are only 9 more school days left!!!! and yeah I know it was mentioned already but it's worth saying again!!!!

I close with this picture of a poster I keep next to my desk, I have been carrying this poster around with me for years! But it just says it all....... Have a great week my friends, Paula

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Currently for May

Here is my very first Currently! This nifty graphic list template is kindly provided by Farley at Oh Boy! 4th Grade. Thank you! I have seen several blogs with this and I love the idea of reflecting on the month.

LISTENING: We are really quite happy about some wind and rain, it means the snow will leave sooner. Although this morning it was snowing again, but it didn't stick. Whew!
LOVING: I am loving the daylight! It has been a long and dark winter, the longer days are very welcome. However, it is throwing my inner clock off, as always, I am going to bed later and later. I'm noticing the students must be doing the same!
THINKING: I am teaching Extended School Year (special ed. summer school), it is a great gig, 3 days a week, Tuesday-Thursday, for 5 weeks. I like to have a theme for summer school, there is usually a wide variety of students in our classes, a theme makes it easier to adapt everyone's instruction. This year I am thinking...Recycling! think of all the art projects we can do.
WANTING: to see my awesome grandchildren! I missed them last week-end and I'm not missing them this one! They are 2 and a half, twins, boy and girl and they are the cutest, sweetest, awesomest kids ever!
NEEDING: I lost 20 lb. between Oct. and Dec. I have felt so much better! HOWEVER, I have gained and lost the same 4 lb. ever since. I know why I'm doing that, I'm eating more bread and sugars! My self control has gone out the window lately.
SUMMER!  The reason I teach summer school! I am going to buy a ticket for Oklahoma and go see my family and friends! I can't wait!
Happy Cinco de Mayo!