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Sunday, July 31, 2011

Lets Make Playdough!

I have to admit, I am just as guilty as our preschoolers about "forgetting" to put the lid back on the playdough (or at least checking behind them), after all it is quite hectic in a preschool classroom and sometimes the little things are, well just missed. Here is a simple recipe for making playdough that the children will enjoy making and playing with.

What you will need:
7 cups of all purpose flour
• 4 cups hot water
• 1/4 cup vegetable oil
• 3 tablespoons of cream of tarter
• 3 cups of salt
• several different colors of food coloring

What to do:
~ Mix flour, cream of tarter and salt in a mixing bowl and mix
~ Add oil and water and knead (add flour to get softer dough)
~ divide playdough and knead a different food coloring into each.
~ store in container with lid or divide it up and put in ziploc bags for children to take home.

Hint: if playdough dries out add water and knead through

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Doggie, Doggie, Where's Your Bone?

Have fun with this game that will keep the children giggling as the Doggie guesses where his bone is!

How to play:
Choose a child to be the "doggie." That child sits in a chair with his back turned AWAY from the children who are all sitting on the floor behind him. Place a "bone" (we use a bean bag) under the chair. Teacher quietly points to one child sitting on the floor to "steal" the bone and hide it beneath them. (all the children should be sitting criss cross on their bottoms). When the bone is hidden all the children say at the same time "Doggie, Doggie, Where's your bone? Somebody stole it from your home. Guess who? The doggie then uncovers his eyes, stands up and has three chances to guess who stole the bone. If they guess the right person they get to be the doggie again. If they do not guess the right person, the child who stole the bone gets to be the doggie next. Everyone gets a chance to be the doggie and to steal the bone.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Sailing Away

Cut out shapes and glue them to a large piece of construction paper to make a sailboat. Add some blue paint for the waves and your ready to sail away into the big blue yonder! Tie this in with your transportation theme or just for fun in the summer!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Mystery Box

Put your Thinking Caps on boys and girls! This fun activity we keep going all year long. The children are beside themselves with excitement when it is their turn to take our mystery box home.

You will need:
• An empty diaper wipe container (we use the one that has the small lid on top of the large lid to store the index card with the clues on it)
• index cards
• construction paper
• clear packaging tape or contact paper

What to do:
~ cover the wipe box bottom with construction paper, write "mystery box" on the sides and use the tape to secure it (and protect it) dark colors work best so the children cannot see in the box.
~ write the instructions on an index card (I use bright pink or blue) and tape it to the top using the packaging tape.
~ Every day the box will go home with someone (we have two since their are so many children in our class).

On the index card put the following:

* choose an item to place in this box then write 3-4 clues (parents) on a piece of paper that describes the item. For example: BALL the clues may be: 1) It is round 2) It can bounce high 3) you can toss it in the air. The clues should be simple enough for our children but also challenging. Bring your box back tomorrow.

At group each morning we put our thinking caps on, raise our hands if we know it and always give others time to "think" 1...2...3... everybody? Then the children shout what they think it is! What fun!!

Lets Make Ice Cream!!

It's just the right time to make yummy yummy ice cream! So gather the ingredients below and have fun making and eating cold creamy ice cream! hint: play dancing music while the children are shaking their bags

You will need:
• Gallon sized zip loc bags 2 per child
• 1 pint sized ziplocbag per child
• alot of ice
• 6 tablespoons of rock salt per child
• 1 tablespoon of sugar per child
• 1/2 cup of milk or half/half per child
• 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla per child

What to do:
~ Fill the gallon sized bag 1/2 way with ice and add rock salt (seal closed)
~ combine milk,sugar and vanilla in pint sized bag and seal.
~ put the pint sized bag inside the gallon sized bag and put the gallon sized bag (the one with ice) inside ANOTHER gallon sized bag and seal tightly. (this will help prevent leaks)
~ Shake until milk mixture turns to ice cream
~ take out bag and pour into a bowl. Add toppings if you wish!

All About Me

A great way for children to share something about themselves (and to boost their self confidence) is to send home a lunch bag with the following note stapled to it:  All About Me Bag
        As part of our theme "all about me," we would like to welcome the children to share things about themselves with their classmates. Find 3-5 things that represent your child and place them in the bag. Some ideas may include an object that is their favorite color, or a label/package from their favorite food, or something they may collect. Please make sure it fits in the bag! We will be sharing these bags with the other children during group this week. You may bring them in any day this week! We look forward to learning more about your child!

All About Me Book

What you need:
• 5 pieces of white construction paper per child
• magazines
• blue, green, and red paint
• crayons
• glue sticks
• circle template (located in template tab)
• hole puncher
• yarn

What to do:

Day 1:  Trace circle onto 1st piece of construction paper and have children draw a self portrait using crayons.

Day 2: Make a collage using pictures children cut from magazines (why not get in some cutting skills?) of items children like; favorite foods,colors etc and glue onto the second page.

Day 3: Trace circle onto 3rd piece of paper and using the blue and green paint have the children "dip" their index finger into the paint and put their fingerprints inside the circle. Write the words "My Fingerprints are Different from everyone in the world"

Day 4: using the red paint (or any other color the child may prefer) paint the child's hand and place on the paper. Write "I am Special"

Day 5: The last page you will list the following;
My Name Is____________________________
I am _____ years old
My Birthday is___________________________
My Favorite Color is_______________________
My Favorite Food is_______________________
I Like to ________________________________
I Don't Like______________________________
I Have ______ brothers and _____ Sisters
I Have a pet_______________________________

~ When all the pages are completed, punch 3 holes along the edge of all the papers and tie yarn through all the holes in the pages to make a book.

I'm Glad To Be Me  (poem)

No one Looks the way I do,
I've noticed that its true.
No one walks the way I walk,
No one talks the way I talk.
No one plays the way I play,
No one says the things I say.
I am special, I am me,
There's no one else I'd rather be!


Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Our Future Is So Bright ~ Bulletin Board

Cut out a large sun out of poster board and place it in the center on the Bulletin Board. Take pictures of the children in "OVER SIZED" sun glasses (you can get them at The Dollar Tree) and frame them in "mini" suns and put them all around the BIG sun. cut out letters that say "Our Future is So Bright We Need Sunglasses"

Monday, July 25, 2011

Eric Carle~ Brown Bear

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do you see? 

Want a fun activity to go along with book? This is so much fun and the children are tickled to "find" the animals around the classroom.  I place the animals in hard to see places around the classroom the day before we read the book. At group time we read the book and the children use their "hand binoculars" to find the animal around the classroom as the book is read.

Edible Ocean

Doing a theme about the ocean? Here's a great snack!

Edible Ocean

What you will need:

• 1 cup of pre-made blueberry flavored gelatin for each child
• gummy fish

What to do:

~ prepare the gelatin ahead of time in separate clear plastic cups (1 per child)
~ let children gently place fish into cup and enjoy

Hint: for a carnival theme fill a clear plastic party bag with blueberry gelatin, place a orange gummy fish in the middle and tie bag shut with a ribbon. Looks like the fish in a bag you win at the carnival/fair.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Bee Hive Door Idea

"Welcome To Our Hive" This is a great way to welcome your students. I made this for our door out of poster board, then put the bees with the children's names on them all around the door! Buy pre-made bees from teaching store or use my stencil in the templates tab.

File Folder Games

We all know how hectic it is in the morning time with Parents dropping of children at all times and you need to speak with them and keep the ones who are already there busy. Great solution are file folder games! They are learning while playing and it is "busy" work so you can greet Parents and children without all of the chaos! Keep the folders in a file box and put one box on each table. The children go to their table and play the games. This is an awesome site for file folder games! Well worth the price and all you have to do is print out, glue to folder and laminate! Doesn't get any easier than that! Above is a sample of what they offer. They have a kit with every possible theme you can imagine! So you can put out the file folder games that correlate with your theme!

Fall Bulletin Board

Not Artistic? Thankfully we have Teaching Stores! Here's a simple board for the fall that's easy to put up and re-usable year after year if you laminate the pieces! carson dellosa has the best products!

Word Wall and Number Caterpillar

We always have a word wall up to add new words as we "learn" them. The first words are the children's names then we add throughout the year. Simple words and sometimes more difficult ones go on the wall. We encourage the children to "write the room" by simply walking around the room with a clipboard and paper and copy words they see. The number Caterpillar begins with the head and we add a number each day. The yellow circles help the children learn to count by 5's! We do this all year and have a celebration on the 100th day of school. This is a great tool for learning to recognize numbers,counting and writing them. The circles are simple to make (I used a plate for the stencil) then added the numbers. (laminate for re-use).

Group Time Board

No Bulletin Board for Group? No problem! Tape Bulletin Board Paper on your wall and add a border! I use a very long piece of paper and use scotch masking tape (the yellow roll) it has to stay up all year so you can use scotch wall mounting tabs (does not damage wall) as well. I like to have the calender, weather chart, alphabet, Left and right hand, What day is it display and birthdays displayed. This is a great way to combine everything in one place for easy reference for the children (and you).

August~Check-In Board

Many students don't go back to school  until September, however we here in North Carolina go back in August. For our first Check-In board I have this bright crayola box made from a yellow piece of poster board (look at a crayola box for reference) and the crayon I used blue poster board. Very easy to make! Laminate then add magnetic strips to connect the crayons (made from construction paper then glued to poster board) to. The children take their crayon from the large crayon and put it on the crayon box. I put "Look Who's Here Today" on a sentence strip above all Check-In Boards.

Letter of the Week

Every week we post a "letter" on the wall. The parents are encouraged to remind their child during the week to bring in something that begins with that particular letter. We introduce a new letter each week and follow through with the "sound" each makes. We also post a color of the week and the children wear something with that color or bring in something to share at group time.

June~Check-In Board

Yay June! Summer is coming and what better way to celebrate then by learning about sea life! This check-in board helps our underwater theme come to life! The "bowl" is made from poster board and a little bit of imagination. Add whatever you like to the bowl like seaweed, rocks etc. The children take their fish off the Big fish and put it in the bowl! Fun Fun Fun! Don't forget to laminate and add magnetic strips to connect the fish! Stencils are located in the templates tab.

May~Check-In Board

With the flowers blooming and the birds chirping all around us, this check-in board is as bright as the world outside the classroom! The bird and house stencils can be found in the templates tab. The large bird is made form red poster board. Be sure to laminate then add the magnetic strips to connect the birds to their houses! Children take their bird from the large bird and place it on a house!