Monday, April 28, 2014


 I love student-directed learning! Today, my students were given the challenge of measuring at least three things in the room with a stack of 10 linking cubes.  Were the items bigger or smaller than their tower?  It was fun to watch them run around the room, busying themselves with math.  Not realizing how much they were learning as they interacted with the world.  It's joyous to watch them come alive...having conversations, calling out to each other, "Come see this Kleenex box!" "I measured the Ruby Slipper legs!"  They just flat-out make me happy.  I saw this last night and it made me think about this very thing.

I wanted to share some pictures of their learning.  I have a lot of lamps illuminating  my room, so it cast a special "glow" today....let's just call it Kindergarten Magic Lighting.  

Tomorrow's prompt: Choose two objects from the basket.  Which object is the longest?  Draw and label the objects.  Repeat with another pair of objects from the basket.
This prompt is from the K-5 Math Resources: Kindergarten Math Prompts Packet.

Digi art and clip art by: KPM Doodles, Etsy Shop: DiPi Designs (Classic Gingham)

Blessings to you,

Sunday, April 27, 2014

A Look Inside My Classroom

Happy Sunday!

I thought I would give you a look inside my classroom, a.k.a. The Emerald will notice a SERIOUS Wizard of Oz addiction. It's probably going to hang around, at least it has since I was six. My students continue to add to my collection, as well. It certainly helps when you teach Kinders and McDonalds puts Oz toys in Happy Meals. It was a competition to see who could bring in the characters first for the window sill. I am blessed.

Everyday my students line up under the rainbow and on the Yellow Brick Road. I laminated the road and have only needed to repair it a few times so far. It helps set the magical tone as soon as they walk into the room, along with the rainbow, bluebirds and Tin Man hanging above their heads.


Dorothy and, I do not make kids stand in the corner!

And here is our WHOLE SCHOOL RULE (also taken from the Make Your Day Program)

These rules, accompanied by gestures are based on WHOLE BRAIN TEACHING (WBT).  There are tons of great sample videos on WBT on You Tube and all their resources and conferences are FREE!  I plan on using these same strategies in Rwanda, Africa when I teach there as well.  Call and response is so natural for children and it keeps their brains engaged-thus less behavior modification. Here are two of my favorite videos for you to preview: WBT1 and WBT2! My rules are based on the second video. Click in the link below to get your own set of Whole Brain Rules free.

These are one of my favorites, that I received as a gift last year from a friend.  They were purchased on Etsy.  One of my other addictions for homemade Oz goodies.

Thanks for stopping by.  Here's your FREEBIE, as promised. Follow this blog and receive more ideas and freebies in the future.  I'd love to follow you too!
Be blessed.


Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Where Do I Find Hope?

I recently received a survey from a Teachers' Association, asking me various questions about Professional Development.  I normally throw such things into the "Do Later" file, but since we were standing in lines at Disneyland (3-5 hours for FROZEN princesses, for any of you taking a trip there in the near future..ugh) so I decided to plunge.  My favorite question was "Where do you find hope each day?"  I instantly thought about their faces.  Crusty and laden with their free/reduced breakfasts.  Uncombed hair that is hurriedly pulled into pig tails or braids by my EA or myself before the bell rings.  Mismatched socks and dollar store jewelry. Smiles as they hand me a used box of Skittles, which they have managed to fill with all of their most precious treasures.  When I tell them how wonderful it is, they simply reply, "It's for you."  When they reflect on love-let them see me.  Consistency.  Patience.  I tell them I love them.  I tell them I believe in them.  There is nothing they could ever do to jeopardize their worth to me.  I facilitate a place where mistakes are acceptable.  Where friendships are cultivated and created.  An environment that celebrates individual achievements and self reflection.  I was once a struggling child, sitting in the background, afraid to say that I didn't understand.  I choose to do whatever it takes, EACH DAY, to be hope.  When I need to feel hope, I look into their eyes.  That's all I need to be reminded what an awesome privilege it is to be "Their Teacher