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Friday, April 26, 2013

Five for Friday {April 26}

This is new for me to add from my phone!
We'll see how it works:)
***Update I don't like adding from my phone- I can't link anything***

This week we talked about communication ....
I showed them how the phone has progressed for me.

Barkley and Truman are staging a protest/sleep in to get new beds... They
Are drama kings!

We used First Grade Fever's Synonym Roll activity.

And Today we went to a farm- they have a huge bouncy pillow- called the Corn Popper.
Miss D and I couldn't resist!!

(I am sure that twenty minutes on this thing is the equivalent of a Turbo class, Mrs. Wheeler! So I won't be in class tomorrow)

Sunday, April 21, 2013

A Saturday Getaway with the Squirrels

Happy Weekend!
Look at this GORGEOUS day we had yesterday!  The Mr and I decided mid-week that if he did not have to work this weekend we would take a  lil day trip and go to Mammoth Cave in Ky. He had never been- I have {but it was over 30 years ago- all I remember is that it is a cave}!
We packed up the cooler, like we did last weekend for our trip to St.Louis (I still have to tell you about the zoo and the Arch) and we headed out!
It is only about an hour and a half away, so we didn't have to leave too early.
We bought our tickets and only had to wait a short time. Then we took the trek down this L.O.N.G path to get to the entrance of the cave.
******This is where I will stop telling you about the cave. After all, I don't want to give anything away. You might decide to go see the cave yourself. *****
I will just show you the picture of the giant hole we went into before we walked for two hours. But this giant hole in the earth is not the only significant part of this picture.
It is the man that is attached to this chick with curly hair. Yes. He is the focus of the rest of the trip to Mammoth Cave, It is a National Landmark, a historic place to be but through most of our tour- he was where our attention was.

We called him the "Baconater"! Really!
He smelled like a big plate of bacon. And I am a bacon lover, so I guess it isn't a horrible thing to give off that beautiful aroma, but for two solid hours- to see nothing but rock and smell nothing but bacon is a little much.
We are guessing that the Baconater and his girlfriend stayed at the campgrounds and cooked bacon over an open fire. That has to be it, because the only alternative is that he rubbed a pack of bacon all over his skin, put a few strips in the dryer with his clothes AND  had a few in his shoes.

After following the Baconater around and listening (to the very interesting) history of the cave, we climbed out of the hole we had gone into. And a nice lunch at the park and we were set to head home.

On the way home though, we saw a sign for Dinosaur World. I had heard of it, but never had a urge to go. None of the children are into the dinos- never have been. But it seemed kind of quirky and reminded the Mr and I of Pee Wee's Big Adventure- so we stopped.

Can you tell they were excited about the decision?

Littlest Little ( I think) was genuinely happy to be there. Especially after he found out that a Fossil Dig was included in the ticket. Big Brother was not as excited as he just turned 12 and that meant that he, too, would get a ticket to go dig and that I would photograph it and show people:)

They look interested to me.

They each got to keep 3 fossils.
(While they were digging, I was amused by the position I was in to grab this pic of a perfectly placed pole).

That is exactly what Chickadee was thinking. She was not digging (get it, digging) the whole fossil search.
At one point she tried to end it all in a giant dino trash can.

When she realized that she was not going to fit.....

They can pretend all they want, but I have proof that they had a good time at Dinosaur World!

This last gif is a little homage to my girl Griffo

After we left all the prehistoric plastic creatures just as we had found them, we headed to Chaney's to have some yummy ice cream! Goodness, it was delicious!

It was a VERY busy day!
And all of it only an hour to two hours from the house. We made it home in time to remember the list of things we left behind to spend the day together.
I hope you all had a fun weekend, too!
(And I am looking forward to leaving a list behind next weekend, too!)

Friday, April 19, 2013

Five for Friday {April 19}

Time for Five for Friday!
I missed out last week-so should I wait and do Ten for Tuesday???
Just Kidding- Ain't Nobody Got Time for That!!!!

This Monday I was presented with this Gorgeous sign from one of my moms.
Is this not perfect!?!?!?!?!

My week got even better as I watched  one of my sweeties share how he solved the problem for his math journal.
Here was the problem.
John was on his way to recycle bags of cans. When he left his house there were 23 bags in the back of his truck. Some of them fell out of the truck on the way there. When he got to the recycling plant, there were only 8 bags in the truck. How many fell out?

His answer made our hearts go pitter patter!!
We push for Constructed Response type thinking even in our PRE-K! So showing it, telling about it, and doing it are all equally important.

First he showed the 23 in the ten frames. After he counted the 8 that were left, he put Xs on the rest. He then wrote the expression 23-?=8. Then he solved.
He even made a KEY! (Thanks to Miss D and her great lessons on maps and globes). Just amazing!

After a lot of great lessons and thoughtful discussions about caring for our Earth, the sweeties wrote about their feelings and made Miss Kindergarten's Home Sweet Home Craftivity.

They also made an Earth Day Promise from Mrs. Wheeler's Earth Day Pack.
A few even pinky promised, as if I am in charge of the Earth. (I did tell them that I would pass it along).

And last but not least, next week starts our state testing. Many of the teachers collaborated and made a fabulous dance routine to a version of Gangam Style. I volunteered myself (and Miss D) to participate.
It was after the first practice round that quickly remembered, "Hey! I can't dance!!"
So I suggested asking our high school or our middle school to borrow their mascot. That way, they couldn't see my face when I am dancing- which we ALL know that makes the dancing better!!

The middle school obliged- and I was one sweaty squirrel in an eagle suit!!!

The best part?
Miss D and I told the sweeties I was in  a meeting the whole time- two of them suspect I was the eagle....I'll never tell!

be sure to head over to Doodle Bugs to link up your Five for Five!


Tuesday, April 16, 2013

The Lil Landfills

Hello and Happy Tuesday to all!

I have a great activity/experiment to share with you! We started today and I have to admit that I am a little scared because I have never done it before. And Squirrels are famous for their fear of the unknown!

Our whole week is themed around Earth Day and Reducing, Reusing, and Recycling.
We have talked about what happens to the trash in your trash can if it is not separated to be recycled.
Our goal here is to lessen the amount of trash we create and introduce the option of creating a compost pile/barrel.
(The Mr has a barrel for compost- bleck- when he does that occasional stir it's a pretty bad smell- but we have an awesome garden every year!!)

Here is our Landfill Experiment:

The pots represent the "landfill".

We added soil (cheap potting soil).

Then we added some items that we might see in our everyday trash.
This was very visual and animated!
I peeled the apple because most of them do not eat the peel. I 'cleared" my plate with the lettuce that I 'did not" eat. I was throwing out the baggie from lunch. And finally, the Styrofoam was from large Cherry Slush from Sonic that I picked up on the way home from work because Miss D was talking about it and I started craving one yesterday!

After our trash made it to the "landfill", we covered it back up with more soil.

We added a sprinkle of water, labeled our pots and set them aside.
We are going to put them outside of the door in the mornings, so that the heat can help with the process.
(We joked that our friends in school were going to think we were crazy for "planting" a plastic baggie tree!!)
So we aren't going to disturb any of the contents for one whole week.
Some of the predictions range from  "the apple will be whole again" to "the apple peel will be all gone"-

I am excited to see our results- and IF we don't see a HUGE difference in the composition of the peel and the lettuce we are going to keep the lil landfills going until we do!

The idea for this activity came from Celebrating Earth Day. (It was a few shelves over from the Backstreet Boys) :)

I have also created a  two VoiceThreads.
On one of them they are just sharing their thoughts on what we read in the book.
In the other they will use the pictures to describe to families what is going on and also they will be able to share their thoughts and predictions about what is going on in our little experiment!

We will keep you posted on what's going on in those pots!!!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

WTH?!?! Wednesday

Dear Wednesday,
I regret to inform you that you no longer have the allure of "mid week" or "hump day" to this Squirrel. Spring Fever has Oh-fficially taken over. It no longer matters what day of the week it is. I apologize to have to be the one to tell you.
Better Luck in the Fall,

That my friends is a little excerpt from a compilation of letters that I have written to the Days of the Week. Saturday and Sunday will be the only ones happy to see the letter in their mailbox!!!

It was absolutely gorgeous here today!!! It was 85 when we got in the Shrek Mobile at the end of our day. EIGHTY FIVE! If I were the superintendent I would have closed the schools and declared it "Go Outside and Play Day!"
Is that already a "day"? It should be!!

We had a fabulous day of learning, thanks to Miss D! I have some pics of  their Social Studies lesson today- I can't wait to share that!
We are working on Maps and Globes this week in SS. Miss D needed that one extra something for a lesson so we headed to the library.
And we struck gold! She found exactly what she was looking for- yeah!
Take a look at what can be found if you go one shelf over and one shelf down......

WHY THE HECK do we have this book in our library????

It was there so of course we had to take the time to check it out!!
(Actually, we saw it during lunch and made a plan to go back while they were at specials to look at the book!!!)

We need a professional opinion!
I wonder if Swersty has this in her library?

There is a plethora of info in this book! You can find out where the rehab guy got his ink....
(I find it a bit ironic that his tattoo artist is surrounded by books).

We can also read about one of AJs favorite past times.....soakin' in the suds

I think if I had a favorite it was actually the smarmy one that looked like everyone's much older brother.

I really thought that there could not be a better find for the day on our little excursion... I was wrong!

Now we're talking!
Not as many pics though- I guess this falls more under the "informational text" category...

It defintely put a smile on our faces to see these in the selection pool! There is so much need-to-know info in these books.
I bet some of their deepest, darkest secrets are shared!!

Speaking of secrets.....
WHAT THE HECK is this neighbor hiding???

On our way home today we noticed that one of the houses a few streets over has a new mailbox. Normal boxes don't stand out - so we probably wouldn't have noticed....that is not normal!
What is he locking up in there?
Our mailman won't deliver our mail of there is car parked too close to the box. You mean that same guy is going to get out and unlock this box and put his Red Plum flyer and Coupon Mint Books inside so that no one can take them???
I have to know what is in that box!
We will be keeping a CLOSE eye on this neighbor for sure!!!

I leave you tonight with some sure signs of that Spring has "Sprung" in our neck of the woods....
A couple of serene moments in nature with:

Yes, Bradford Pears are my enemy this time of year!! My neighborhood is covered in them and there are several right outside my classroom door. (It even seems a little less sunnier where these evil trees live, doesn't it?)

Have a great Thursday!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Not-So-Lazy Sunday

Happy Sunday!
I hope the weather was wonderful wherever you were today!!! Take a look across the street from me...

The sky is blue.
The trees are blooming.
(even if it is a Bradford Pear and it stinks to high high Heaven- I just know the allergy attacks are on their way!!)

Yesterday and today were just gorgeous!

Both of the younger Littles have been outside playing and running and hiding and seeking and fighting and telling and snacking and fighting and telling and yelling and screaming and......
and hopefully they will be sleeping after too long!

I have been out there on and off today. Miss D and I planned very thoroughly on Friday so there was only prep to do today... We are making ourselves a center during math center time to do some testing on fluency.
They won't receive a grade, just seeing how close we are to mastery for some and to see how far a few of them have to go.

I tell you who should receive a grade today......ME!
A grade of A+++++++ for all of this cutting, laminating and NOW for the recut-
but it will be worth it!

This is part of the Fishing for Fluency pack that I will be cutting out during my Sunday DVR shows.

If you are looking for some fun fluency practice with numbers to 10 checkout these fun games/centers...

So I am off to cut and stack-
Here's hoping you have a great week!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Five for Friday {April 5}

Happy Friday!
Of course, I am linking up- I LOVE Five for Friday! Having a tiny peek at everyone's week is such fun!

1. This Friday there wasn't a  "Shrek Shadow" to be found.
With the warmer weather coming in on top of our chilly night- we got to wake up to what we like to call
"Scooby Doo Fog"
(I am beginning to notice a cartoon-y theme for this family).

2. To go along with our Fishing for Fluency Activities, we did a Math Task about fishing.
I worked on  the display for it on and off for the last day and a half.
As other classes passed on their way to lunch, I kept hearing whispers that I was making Mario and Luigi.

That was not my intention at all. They were just supposed to be two buds hanging out fishing (they just happen to have the names of my Littles...maybe).

But I couldn't take it anymore. If everyone was expecting them to look more like the the Kings of Mario Kart, then so be it!

3.  HA HA!
And I am totally leaving it up there, too!

4. Our unit this week was on Magnets.
Here's a cool activity we did today.
They had to "feed the shark" by using the magnetic wand and pulling the food over.
The food was in the horrible non circular circle. It consisted of metal items and non metal items.
When they were finished they had to write about what they were able to feed him and what wouldn't move.
The penny stumped several of them!!! One of my arty smarty shoots his hand up and says "It must not have any iron in it because it didn't move!" {Puffy heart}
Fun. Fun!

5. I didn't take as many pics as I normally do this week. So I am going to share one of Chickadee from Easter morning.
Shhhhhh....Hers was sleepy....

Well that does it for me tonight- Chickadee and I have a scary movie date night!!!!
Have a great night!
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