Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Neglect....Training....New Year....New Class....

I know, I know... I've been neglecting this blog but since I'm teaching 4th grade this year, I haven't had much time to blog. I have started uploaded stuff I created while I was teaching high school though :). I figured I'd might as well, right? Who knows... It could help some poor English teacher during the year! I've been training a lot as well. Lots of district and school training.... Whew! My head is spinning!!!! Hopefully it will pay off... Sometimes I'm overwhelmed by all of the things required in 4th grade! I hope everyone's year is going well and I promise to start sharing more of my Kindergarten stuff from previous years! Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Liebster Award!

I have been nominated for the Liebster award! Thank you to Rebecca over at Okie Teacher Tales!

1. Link back to the blog that nominated me
2. Nominate 5-11 blogs with fewer than 200 followers
3. Answer the questions posted for you by your nominator
4. Share 11 random facts about yourself
5. Create 11 questions for your nominees
6. Contact your nominees and let them know you nominated them


My nominees:



My Questions:

1.      Why did you start blogging?

I started blogging to share ideas and create a network for other teachers to share their ideas.

2.     What is the crazy thing that has happened at school to you?

The craziest thing that has ever happened to me at school was when I let a student go to the restroom and he accidentally came back without his shorts!

3.     Where would you travel to if you could go anywhere?

I would travel to Greece (and I plan to!)

4.     What is your dream job/grade level?

I have taught K for 10 years and high school for 5 years. I’m starting 4th grade next year and I’m extremely excited about it. My dream grade level is 1st grade though!

5.     Why did you start teaching?

I needed a career change and was soooooo glad I did! I LOVE it and wouldn’t do anything else!

6.     What do you do for fun?

I love to camp with my family and travel.

7.      How many schools did you go to as a child?

I went to 1 elementary school, 2 middle schools and 2 high schools.

8.     Who was your favorite teacher? Why?

Ms. Menna was my favorite teacher because she was my Kindergarten teacher!

9.     What is your class theme or how is it decorated?

I have always used stars in my theme but this year I’m going to do a beach theme with lots of fish, surf boards and pink flamingos!

10. Does your school do a school wide theme?

If so, what is it for the next year?

Yes, we do bears.

11. Do you sell things on Tpt? If no, do you plan to in the future? 

What is your link if you do?


Random Facts about Me:

My love scary movies!
I love Mexican food!
I eat Scholtzsky's every Saturday!
I grew up in Michigan.
I am addicted to blog hopping, pinterest and instagram.
I have a college student and a senior in high school.
I love dogs!
I love to be outdoors!
I love to camp on the lake in our home-away-from-home!
I have a sock monkey collection.
I collect flamingos!
I'm obsessed with perfecting my lesson plans!

Now Your Questions:

1. What is your favorite grade to teach?

2. What is your favorite time of year and why?

3. What was your favorite trip you have ever taken?

4. What was the last conference you attended?

5. What was the last book you read?

6. How do you relax during the school year?

7. How long have you been blogging?

8. Where did you go to College?

9. What is your favorite product off of Teachers Pay Teachers?

10. Do you use a smart board in your classroom?
11. How many children do you have? (furry or human :))

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Mystery Show & Tell

Welp! It's definitely warm here in Texas.... Rain on the way tomorrow though :) I've been sort of saving this for a while. I used it when I taught Kindergarten and the kids LOVED it! (Not to mention the parents!) It is really a versatile concept, it can be used with just about anything. I've seen teachers do something like it with What's in the Bag?, or their purse. (I don't know about you but my purse is a bottomless pit! We'd be pulling things out all day!) I came across this idea about 15 years ago. It just an idea that teachers could take and manipulate. I created the cards and the question marks for the outside for the bags to make it more of a game and to add a little spark to our show & tell. It had gotten a little bland and I didn't allow the children to bring toys unless it was a 'special' one. I hope you can use it in your classroom! CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD A COPY Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

A Walk Down Memory Lane

I've been going through some of my old teaching boxes from my elementary teaching days. I found so many things about beginning literacy that I'd forgotten that I did and I wanted to share some of them.
This is Mr. Alphabet :). He helped my Kindergartners learn their beginning, middle and ending sounds. I would feed the items from the letter of the week into his mouth and (in his funny voice) would "spit" them out and ask them if the items started with, ended with or had the sound in the middle of the object. It was so much fun! It was great RTI as well. One of my parents made him for me out of a trash can. (How creative was that parent?)
Next, I had parents take home bags with a specific letter marked on them and had them fill the bags with items that began, ended and had the letter in the middle of the objects. I also had them put two or three items that did not to make that sound for Mr. Alphabet spit them out :). He would swallow and make "yummy" sound if the items corresponded with the letter sounds.
I would just store the items in bags and keep them in boxes in the cabinet.
This is the Kindergarten Star News. I started doing this in 1998 and stopped in 2007 when I went into teaching at the high school level. I know some of you have actually downloaded my optional cover from my TPT store and have made it your own. I'm a firm believer in taking things and making them suit my style of teaching. I'm also a firm believer in - if it's not an original idea, don't change it around and claim it's yours and sell it. Some of the ideas I use have been around forever! I just took them and changed them for my needs in the classroom.
Okay... this is two of the covers I actually made for my books. (Yes, my name used to be Nash but it's now Cummings for those of you who don't know me personally!)

I used to line 11x14 paper and make copies of it until I found this paper in a catalog somewhere. It had the perfect amount of lines and space for illustrations.
Students told a "story" each morning (usually the Star Student chosen for the math calendar). After they finished telling me their story, I underlined three words in red for them to illustrate at the top. Later, I would underline sight words in blue for recognition practice. The stories are funny and amazing! I plan to publish them in a book! :)

The name Kindergarten Star News is totally something I came up with... I guess from my Journalism background. I would display them in the room once the students illustrated them. I put past years books in the library for current students to look at them.  I hope this gives you some ideas for your own classroom!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Kindergarten Bakery

Hello! I've been sooooo busy but I found time to sketch out my lesson plan for my Kindergarten Bakery. I did this lesson every year. It is actually very extensive and include community helpers, sink and float, weighing, graphing, counting, etc. It was always such a blast! The whole school got involved, especially parents of former students. It got so big, we started donating the money. Just click HERE and go to my TPT store. Enjoy!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013