Thursday, March 29, 2012


Because I'm starting this blog mid-way through the school year, I wanted to share a preview of something I create each week for my SMART Board, and if I get positive feedback, I'll be more than happy to upload all of the SMART Board lessons I have created for free! :-)

At my school, we still teach one letter each week because many of our kiddos still need to learn their letters and sounds.  As the year continues, we spend less time focusing on the letter, and more time with other phonics skills.  Next year we talked about introducing one letter each week until winter break, and then moving to 2 letters per week. 

On this slide, in the top right corner, there is a link to the Starfall page that teaches letter U, as well as a link to a video on Youtube that teaches letter U.  If you've never checked out the havefunteaching videos for each letter, you should definitely do so.  My kids love them!

At my school, we use The Phonics Dance to teach children the letter sounds, as well as common phonics "hunks and chunks" that children need to learn, such as ch, sh, th, wh, ph, oo, or, ar, ow, ou, ing, ed, etc.  I love this program because each phonics chunk has a chant with hand motions to go along with it, and we recite these every day.  I introduce the phonics chunks whenever it seems appropriate, such as when we learn a new sight word that has one of the chunks.  The slide above is a great way to reinforce the phonics chunks we've learned.  

Each week, I include a relevant poem in my SMART Board slides that we practice each day.  The next week, it goes in the poetry center for my students to glue into their poetry notebooks and illustrate.    

Please leave feedback if you download it and like it.  Let me know if you have any suggestions for me!  I will gladly upload all of my SMART Board documents if anyone is interested. :-)

Monday, March 26, 2012

Decorah Eagles Webcam

I am officially part of the blogging world!  I have been stalking following about 20 Kindergarten blogs throughout the year, and I've been wanting to start one of my own.  Well...spring break has arrived and I finally have time to get one up and running!  Thanks to Kelly from Kelly Avenue Designs, I now have a super cute blog that goes perfectly with the monkey theme I have in my classroom!

To get started, I'll share something that I've been doing with my kinders for the past couple weeks.  I've been hooked on a live webcam of a bald eagle's nest in Decorah, Iowa.  The webcam shows a mom and dad eagle and their 3 eggs that are going to hatch any day now!  I decided it would be a great authentic learning opportunity for my students.  The exciting part will come once the eaglets have hatched, but my kinders have been SO excited about watching it already.  I'll be having my kids create an eagle journal to write their observations in each day, once we get back from spring break.  Here's the link to the live webcam if you're interested!

Do any of you already watch this webcam with your students?  If so, have you created any activities to accompany it?  I'd love to hear your ideas!