Saturday, February 27, 2016

Three Cheers for Leap Year Sale!

It only comes once every four years so it calls for a celebration!

I have teamed up with several others sellers to bring you 'hoppin' great deals for 3 days!  
Be sure to scroll down to the end of the post to get the links to the participating stores!

On Sunday February 28th find $4 deals!

Find my Spring 'Read the Room' pack for only $4!
Purchased individually, it would cost $ is normally reduced to $8 but on February 28th it will be only $4!

This will give you 'read the room' centers for practicing CVC and CVCe words for Read Across America week, St. Patrick's Day, Easter/Spring and Bugs/Spring themes!

You can find all the other $4 deals of the day by typing leapintosavings into the Teachers Pay Teachers search bar:

On LEAP YEAR DAY, Monday February 29th, find 50% off deals!

Find my 'Writing A 'How To' Book Bundle' for only $10.50!
It currently consists of 7 'how to' writing packs for building a snowman, taking care of your teeth, making a pizza, making a peanut butter & jelly sandwich, making a valentine, making a cake and growing a flower!

If bought individually it would cost $21, it is normally reduced to $15, but on Monday 2/29 it will be only $10.50- that is only $1.50 a pack!

Just like Sunday, find the rest of the 50% off deals by typing leapintosavings in the TpT search engine!

On Tuesday March 1st find $1 deals!

My students LOVE these stories and we use the book in this pack for individual book baggies, the retelling activities in listening center and the sequencing activity for comprehension checks!

You can also find it in this money saving BUNDLE of all of my old lady packs:
it is on sale for 20% off the bundle price discount too (reduced from $44 to only $24) and includes 'bundle exclusive' retelling bags!

But that is not all...
From February 28th-March 1st my entire store will be 20% off!

You can also enter this amazing giveaway:

But that's not all because I have linked up with Kelly & Kim's Kindergarten Kreations for Markdown Monday!
Monday 2/29 through Friday March 4th this set of 60 editable puzzles will be 50% off!
Click THIS LINK to find all the deals of the week!

If you are still searching for some fun things to do for Leap Year Day, be sure to check out this post that lists 29 Fun Things To Do With Number 29 on February 29th:

To find all the daily deals and participating stores, please click these links:

Enjoy the extra day!
Until next post,

Friday, February 19, 2016

29 Things To Do On February 29th!

It only comes once every 4 years...might as well celebrate with a day of fun!

As a New York teacher, I had the past week off for Mid-Winter Recess, so I was able to catch up on a few things- plans, cleaning, laundry...and realized Leap Year is only 10 days away!

As I sipped some coffee- what a treat that was still hot, in a mug and not 'on the go'...I started to think of 29 things we could do with the number 29 to celebrate this fun day!

Here is what I came up with!
I split them up into 'categories' that we could fit into our blocks throughout the day!

Math Related:
1. Write numbers for 29 seconds!
(Give them a piece of paper- or white board- set the timer and 'GO!'  See how many they can write in 29 seconds!  Gives some practice with number writing too!)

2. Build/Create with 29 pattern blocks!
(Have them count out 29 and see what they can make!  They can record how many they used of each block, draw a picture of their creation, write about their creation, etc!  You can 'time' them- 29 seconds or 29 minutes!)

3. Show 29 on ten frames!
(Make a BIG triple ten frame on the floor with masking tape or use one projected onto the board or distribute a page with 3 ten frames on it.  They can put counters on OR plastic frogs!)

4. Sort 29 bears and tell how you sorted!
(I say 'bears' but my bin has all sorts of primary colored plastic animals.  They can count out 29, sort them, tell their sorting rule and then do it again with a different group of 29!)

5. Compare the weight of 29 counters to different objects from around the room!
(Use a balance scale and fill one side with 29 counters- then put various objects from around the room [pencil, crayon, feather, connecting cube, pattern block, etc.] on the other side and talk about what happens!)

(and I realized I forgot a math one...order the numbers simple!  Use number cards from your calendar, 100 chart, etc.!)

ELA Related:
6. Write letters for 29 seconds!
(Just like the numbers listed above, but with letters!)

7. Write your name for 29 seconds!
(Same as numbers and letters but with names!  Great name writing practice- can talk about how longer names are written less than shorter names!  Try it with just first names for a round and then first and last!  Compare the two!)

8. Read/Write the Room for 29 words!
(Send them off with clipboards [or a hardcover book if you don't have enough] and have them find and write 29 words from around the room!  

9. Find 29 words you know in a poem/passage/book!
We'll be using this frog passage!
It is filled with sight words we know and words we can sound out- plus it teaches us about frogs!
I am going to give them highlighters to highlight the 29 words they know!
You can have them circle or underline words too!
Using a poem- use highlighting tape!

10. Use 29 magnetic letters to make words!
(Have them pick the 29 letters or choose the letters for them!  They can move the letters about to create sight words, CVC words, color words, vocabulary words, spelling words, etc!  They can record the words on paper or a white board!)

11. Read for 29 minutes!
(This can be 29 independent minutes for upper elementary grades, a combination of whole/shared reading and independent reading minutes or a story you read aloud to them for 29 minutes!  Set a timer and start reading!)

12. Write a story for 29 minutes!
(Same as reading- can be independent writing time, combination of shared/interactive writing and independent reading time or whole group shared/interactive writing for all 29 minutes!)

13. Write about what you will do when you are 29!
(Have them think about what they will look like, what job they will have, where they will be living, things they can do at 29 that they can't do now, etc!  Write about it and draw pictures too! 
 You can even combine this with interviewing someone who is 29 years old!)

14. Make a list of 29 places you have been!
(This would probably work best as an interactive/shared writing list, but it could be done independently too!  It could be vacations/places and/or 'everyday' places they have been to too!

Science Related:
15. Add 29 drops of food coloring to cups of water!
(This could be 29 of the same color and how it changes as they are added, mixture of different color drops and what new colors are made, experiment with different number of cups and how intensity is different as use more/less cups, experiment with amount of water in each cup and how it compares/contrasts to other cups, etc!  Combine this with a class-wide science fair project too!)

Getting Active:
16. Hop in place for 29 seconds 
(You could even let them 'leap' for 29 seconds!)

17. See where 29 steps takes you!
(We do with for the 100th day, so it would be fun to do it with '29' too!  We always mark our spot in the hall with a big foot, but since this is 'LEAP' year, a lily pad is definitely in order!

18. Run outside (or in place) for 29 seconds!
(If it's warm we'll be running outside...but if the snow is still covering the ground, it will be inside and in place!)

19. Do 29 jumping jacks!
(I love watching kids do jumping jacks!  I think they will begin to lose stamina as we get closer to 29- I know I might too!)

20. Do 29 sit-ups!
(Pair them up and get them going!  It's counting practice too!  Can't handle '29?'  How about do sit-ups for 29 seconds instead?!)

Getting Crafty:
21. Use 29 scraps of paper to create something!
(Pull out that scrap bin and let them count out 29 scraps OR give them paper and have them rip it itno 29 pieces and then use them to re-create something!  I love letting kids be creative with no 'right' way of how it should end up!)

22. Use 29 crayons to color a picture!
(You can print something off the internet, use a coloring page you have or let them choose a page from a coloring book (dollar store!) to rip out and color!  They can count out 29 crayons (there are sure to be some repeat colors, but with so many variations of the colors, you could wind up with 29 different shades!) and then use those 29 to color!  
We'll be using this page to help us remember our day of '29' fun!

23. Create something with playdough for 29 minutes!
(My kids L-O-V-E playdough...maybe we'll have to make a batch of homemade green dough for the day!)

24. Make a necklace with 29 beads!
(I have a ton of pony beads left over from our Thanksgiving retelling bracelets that we will be using!  If we have Cheerios or Fruit Loops left from our 100th Day, maybe we'll make editable necklaces!)

25. Collect 29 signatures!
(We can collect a majority of these just from classmates, but then grab some others from friends in the lunch room, school staff we see throughout the day, etc!  All that name writing is a great way to sneak in extra name writing practice too!)

26. Build/Create with 29 Legos!
(I had purchased 2 huge bags of imitation Legos from Amazon last summer and they L-O-V-E using them during indoor recess and choice time!  They WILL NOT mind this challenge of creating with 29 pieces!  It can be timed and/or have them switch pieces with a friend and see what someone else can create with the same pieces you had just used!)

27. Stack 29 cups, blocks, etc!
(How high can we go before it crashes?!  Is it stronger if we make a wider base?  We'll find out!  You can make it academic by writing sight words on the cups/blocks too and they need to read the word before they can stack it!)

28. Partake in 29 random acts of kindness!
(I know we can use more kindness in our classroom!  This will be a perfect day to be aware of how kind we can be to others!  We'll be charting our acts to make sure we hit 29!  It could be a simple as a compliment to another, helping someone zip a coat, telling the secretary 'thank you' or watching their teacher buy the security guard a cup of coffee!)

29. Make a snack with 29 items!
(No celebration is ever complete without a snack!  Just like the 100th day snack, we'll make a trail mix by counting out 29 pieces of snack foods such as Cheerios, Fruit Loops, Teddy Grams, Chocolate Chips, Raisins, Chex Cereal, Kix Cereal, Pretzel Sticks, Goldfish Crackers, etc!  They can choose the quantity of each as long as when finished there are only 29 goodies in their bag!)

Think You Want To Do A Day of '29' Fun?
It'd be hard to take notes on all of what I wrote here, so I put it all together in this FREE download:

If you are interested in the pages I described/showed in the post. you can find the supplemental pack here:

We'll also be sporting our fun Leap Year Crowns that day:

If you want to get a 'JUMP'-start on your 'random acts of kindness' count, head on over to my friend Brenda's Facebook page (Tejeda's Tots) and wish her a 'HOPPY' '10th' Birthday on February 29th!

 AND if you are looking for some great 'Leap Year' Deals, be sure to check out THIS POST!
My Teachers Pay Teachers store will be 20% off and each day there is a 'daily deal':

Sunday February 28th:

Monday February 29th:

Tuesday March 1st: 

(Click each picture to be brought to the deal!)
You can also search leapintosavings in the TPT Search Engine to find all the deals or find the links to each participating store in THIS POST!

The best part...

'HOPPY' Leap Year!
Make the most of your extra day this year!

Until next post,

Friday, February 12, 2016

Add Some 'Bubbly' To Your Valentine's Day!

Looking to add some 'bubbly' to your Valentine's Day this year?!
Aren't we all!!!
But here is an idea your students are sure to L-O-V-E you for!

It's time to make candy hearts DANCE!!!
In an effort to find some science activities that also fit my 'themes' I stumbled upon some ideas on Pinterest but needed to give them a test run before bringing them into my classroom.

Lucky for me, I have two 'love bugs' who love testing out school things for me!

Dancing Hearts Experiment
You will need:
glass jar/cup/mug/container
1 cup water 
1/2 T. baking soda
2-3 conversation hearts
1/4 c. vinegar

There is an 'alternate' way we tried too:
glass jar/cup/mug/container
1 cup seltzer water
2-3 conversation hearts

I also put some red paper up so that we could really see the candy in the mug.

Are you ready to try it out?!

To make it 'academic' I created a recording sheet.
I folded it three ways so that he couldn't 'look ahead!'

First he had to check if he had all his materials.

Then he had to draw/write about what he thought was going to happen.
(This is the PreK/K version of the recording sheet.)

Time to get the experiment ready!
Measure out 1 cup of water (it was straight from the tap- not hot or cold.. 'just right!')

Add the 1/2 T. of baking soda to the water and stir it with the spoon.

Add the water/baking soda mix to the glass jar/cup/mug/container.

Choose 2 conversation heart candies and add them to the water/baking soda mix solution.

Now comes the FUN!!!

Add the 1/4c vinegar to the solution!  
It will bubble up and become 'foggy' but then as the 'fog lifts' you will see a great deal of bubbles...and many that 'hug' the candies!

Watch closely as the bubbles make the candies 'dance!'

Can't picture it?
Check out our videos of it here:
You will notice I use the spoon- if the candies become 'stuck' to the bottom of the cup, just give them a little nudge with either your finger or a spoon.

Here is another trial.
 I chose blue again since it has 'danced' so well in the first one and again the blue danced to its heart's content!

[Please ignore the little voice at the end...he was getting upset that Mommy sent him out of the room to make the video in silence and wanted to get back to playing and experimenting!!]

So now it was time to go to the bottom third of our recording sheet and note our observations!

Here is a close-up of the recording sheet and 'take home' directions:

So what is the 'science' behind the experiment?
The candies are 'lifted' by the bubbles created by the baking soda/vinegar interaction.  Some bubbles pop, causing the candy to 'fall' but then others 'catch' it and push it back up.  If it makes it to the top the bubbles pop once they hit the 'air' and then the candy falls back down until it is 'caught' by more bubbles!

We also tried out the 'easier' version using seltzer water.  It wasn't as 'exciting,' so I would suggest you go with the baking soda/vinegar solution if doing it with your students.
As you can see from this video, they didn't 'dance' much (and I even tried the blue again!):

But our 'experiments' did not end there!
My son was grabbing random things like sugar and salt to see what happened when he poured them in!  You and your students could spend a whole week on all the different possibilities and comparing/contrasting them and the results of each!

I have put the recording sheets, directions, take-home cards, comparison worksheets and more together in this pack:

The recording sheets are differentiated- allowing you to choose what works best for your students and their ability levels!

I hope your Valentine's Day celebrations are LOVE-ly and your day is full of 'bubbly' fun and a LOVE of learning!

Until next post,

Monday, February 8, 2016

Time to Build CVC Words!

Back in August I saw a great post by The Printable Princess about using Target Dollar Spot blocks for sight word building.
I bought 3 bags with the intention of making them...and then came 'back to school' and all its craziness!
Those bags just sat and collected dust sat...until today!
My kindergarteners are really struggling with CVC words this year so I have been trying to come up with some new ways to help them.
A few weeks ago I saw A Pinch Of Kinder post on IG about making some CVC blocks for her kids...
My kids this year L-O-V-E blocks...I had brought in some old Mega Blocks that belonged to my boys and you would think they were gold!

Thanks to Mother Nature, I had a 4-Day weekend (I won't be thanking her in May when I need to make these days up!) so this is how I spent my 2nd snow day:

These blocks are a bit smaller than 'Mega Blocks' so I had to play with the size of labels to get them just right!

I typed up 40 CVC words (8 for each short vowel) and inserted the pictures into a table in PowerPoint.
When I printed them they were WAY bigger than the I kept reducing...the perfect size was when I had the printer print 6 pages to one page!  
Not only did they fit...I was able to get all the letters and pictures on 1 sheet of labels!  

I used these full sheet labels:
so it was like a giant sticker!

I cut the pictures and words first:

And then assembled them:
It was easier to peel the whole word and then cut it into letters to stick on the blocks.

I also made a recording sheet so that the kids can also practice writing the words they build.

The blocks fit perfectly to build the CVC word:

And there are plenty of words to practice!

Best yet...they fit back into the bags they came in for easy storage!

Of course I was short a few blocks, so I improvised by putting a picture sticker on both sides of the long block.  This way they can flip it to make the other picture and 'borrow' a letter from another word to complete it!
(I will probably keep these out of the mix until they master building the words!)

I have put the pictures and letters into a FREE downloadable file for anyone else that wants to make these!  I also included the 'how to' on printing so that they fit the blocks best and the recording sheet!
(If you happen to have the larger 'Mega Blocks' and want the pictures/letters to be larger, you can modify it by selecting a lower number for pages per page.)

I am thinking of putting the small blocks with the letters into our sensory bin and having them find the letters they need to build the words.
I will also keep a few at my guided reading table for word work- either as a warm-up before reading or extra practice for after reading.

My hope is that after a few weeks of using them in centers and small group instruction, we will have a better handle on building, blending and reading CVC words so that I can put them in our early finishers basket for added practice!

I'd love to hear how you plan on using them too!

Until next post,
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