Saturday, October 25, 2014

Fall Favorites Blog Hop!

The air is crisp,
The leaves are falling!
Hello squirrels looking for food....Goodbye birds full of tweeting!
Apple, Pumpkins, Acorns & More...
31 Bloggers are bringing 'Fall Favorites' to your door!

Next to summer, Fall is definitely my favorite!  I love the 'smell' and 'feel' of Fall!  I love all the fun associated with Fall too!  But there is one thing that signifies it is Fall...

It is my guilty pleasure...and thanks to Starbucks now posting the calories in this little cup of heaven, I only indulge in one each year- but Fall is not Fall without one!

But my pumpkin obsession does not end there!
I love making 
pumpkin pancakes- and when my husband works late my boys and I love to have them for dinner!

And...thanks to all those lattes of Falls past, these little gems are my 'sweet treat' without the guilt
Pumpkin Muffins- 2 ingredients and only 2 points on Weight Watchers!
Simply mix 1 box of carrot (or spice) cake mix with 1 15oz can of pumpkin.  If it is a little too thick add 2T of water.  Bake in lined mini muffin pan (for 1 point muffins) or regular muffin tins (for 2 point muffins) in a 425 degree oven for 12-15 minutes (longer for the larger muffins- until the toothpick comes out clean).  Allow to cool and store in an airtight container.  I find they are even better the longer they sit!

So it probably wouldn't surprise you then that I LOVE to bring pumpkin fun into my kindergarten classroom!
This past week we 'carved' in!  I am excited to show you all we learned- and the fun we had!

Here are my pumpkin books and resources I used this week:

And our 'Poem of the Week' was a simple one so that we could focus on some sight words, 1:1 reading, rhyming and initial sounds!

We started the week by exploring a pumpkin using our 5 senses.  We carved it open to explore all of its parts (I don't have any pictures because I was covered in pulp!)!  We even took the seeds out and I brought them home to roast.  Most of them LOVED the roasted seeds!

We learned all about a pumpkin's life cycle through books and magazine resources.  The children then helped me demonstrate by attaching pictures to a giant pumpkin:
We ended the week and our life cycle discussion by making life cycle crowns!  It was a great way for them to demonstrate what they learned and will help spark some conversation at home too I'm sure!

In addition to the crowns, they worked with a few readers this week.  We are really working on reading with 1:1 correspondence and using pictures to support the text. 
These books then went into their Readers Workshop baskets for independent reading and sharing!

To piggyback that, they also read a simple repetitive text about the locations of pumpkins.  This helped review what we had just finished in math!

For shared writing we made a list...

And for interactive writing we labeled the parts of a pumpkin! 

I have always done the same project for students to show the parts of a pumpkin but wanted to change it up this year...I wanted something to show the outside AND inside of a pumpkin.  So after a few botched up prototypes, this was born!

I have put all the steps into this graphic for you so that it is easier to reference- just pin it to your Fall craft board and you are all set!  

 When it came time to label, many of my students walked up to our class model to check their label to the class one!

Each pumpkin was unique!  I had them cut the plate in half so I got some pretty interesting and almost 'life-like' representations of a 'carved' pumpkin! 

So when we were all done we were able to show everyone what we had learned about the inside and outside of a pumpkin!

And needless to say, it made a great bulletin board display of ELA and Science learning! 
(If we didn't have strict fire marshal/code rules I would have loved to have hung these from the ceiling so that both sides could be seen at the same time!)

So now that we had explored and really learned all about pumpkins it was time to...taste them!
A few years ago a colleague shared this recipe for 'Pumpkin Pie in a Bag'- her daughter's preschool had done it and she was able to snag a copy to share!
It is so much easier than attempting to make and/or purchase and serve a 'traditional' pumpkin pie!

I put it into this graphic for easy pinning:

One bit of advice...

The kids really LOVED smashing the crackers!
 Next was to knead the pudding/milk mixture...

 Then you open up the bag and add in the pumpkin...
 And knead it some more!
You will know it is ready when your filling looks like this: 

While the kids are kneading the mix, put 2T of crackers into each cup

 Next you snip the corner off the bag and squeeze some of the 'pie' into each cup

 I had doubled the batch and it was perfect for my group of 19 (plus extra for some teachers!)

Add a squirt of Redi-Whip and you are set to go!

I sprinkled the tops with some pumpkin pie spice too!

The kids GOBBLED them up and were ready to take me down if I didn't give them seconds!

These cups were made for a kid, but it's also a perfect (and easy) treat to bring to a holiday gathering- just fill them up a tad more!
In addition to the craft idea and recipes, I have this 'Fly In the Pie' set of counting games for FREE!  It has 3 different games to play using sets of pumpkins from 1-10 (Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah Designs recently posted sets of counting graphics- perfect for these types of activities!).  

Directions and other suggestions for use and included in the free download!
Feedback is greatly appreciated! 

Additionally I am putting all of my pumpkin products on sale this weekend!
Click each cover to be directed to it on TeachersPayTeachers:


In addition, I'd love to warm you up with a Pumpkin Spice Latte on me!
The winner also gets to choose one of my pumpkin products (listed above) for free!
Entry window closes at 11:59pm EST Monday 10/27.

Ready to find some more 'Fall Favorites?!'
Next up is one of my favorite blogging duo...

Remember the hop runs from Saturday October 25th- Monday October 27th.
Happy Fall!
Until next post,
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Sunday, October 19, 2014

No Prep Number Fun For Fall!

This week we will begin our numbers unit, but I know we are a bit behind many other schools who started 4-6 weeks before us!

Facebook fans told me they needed no-prep independent math printables for numbers 0-10 with a fall feel...
Ask and you shall receive!

This is a pack of 13 no-prep printables!

Here is a sneak peek at all that is included:

Trace and write numbers

Count, cut and paste

ID number, count out that many and glue

Spin, count and find the number 

Spin, ID number and count 

Fun way to integrate science!  Spin, graph, record, count and analyze

Reading a ten frame 

All you will need to do to 'prep' these is download, print and copy!

You can put some of them in sleeve protectors to make them reusable resources for centers too!

For the spinner printables, simply give students a paperclip- have them use their pencil to hold the paperclip as the spinner!

I have selected this pack as my choice for Markdown Monday for this week!
All week long, this pack will be only $2!

Be sure to check out all my other fall and non-seasonal math goodies!  Use the custom categories on the left hand side of my TPT homepage!

Find other steals and deals via this link:

And be sure to stop by The Primary Pack on October 24th!  It will be my first post on the collaborative blog...I'll be talking all about...
PLAY DOUGH...and how to use it for academic centers and activities in your classroom!

Hoping you have a fall-tastic week!
Until next post,
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