Monday, October 27, 2014

The Book Whisperer: chapter 6

I think I have renamed Monday, "Read More Monday".

That seems to be the essence of Miller's words of wisdom: get the kids reading more. And make sure that teachers are reading "more" too; teachers are reading role models for students.   

I've got to share some book excitement with you.  Friday was a Professional Development Day for us.  And you know how they always have displays of amazing books and toys and resources for the classroom.  Well, a few things just called my name so loudly, I was compelled to buy them.  (And a few colleagues added their persuasion when I erroneously thought that I did not really need a new underwear book!)   

Here are my buys.  


Only four books and an amazing puppet - but the school book fair is only a couple weeks away.  I have to pace myself.


Chapter 6 is titled Cutting the Teacher Strings.  It's time to take a good hard look at things I do because they are things that I have always done.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

dancing skeletons

The toe bone's connected to the foot bone.
The foot bone's connected to the ankle bone.
The ankle bone's connected to the leg bone.
These bone's are gonna rise again.

We don't have our anatomy quite right.  But we're okay with that.  

Because our skeletons have personality




Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Pete the Cat headband and book

Do we love Pete?

Goodness yes!!

We could not resist starting off our school year with Pete.

He is pretty much the coolest cat in school.

And we are learning from his groovy attitude.


Sunday, October 19, 2014

The Book Whisperer: chapter 5

It's two weeks before Halloween.

I know that this statement does not seem to have a lot to do with The Book Whisperer. But it does.

Two week before Halloween I get out the Halloween "stuff".  

Including the Halloween books.  

I am not crazy about the ghoulishness and blood and gore of Halloween.  I definitely am not a fan of kids having Halloween candy for breakfast  and then coming to school -- and then a crapload more if of it in their lunches.

But Halloween books.  There are so many wonderful Halloween books.  Today we will be reading The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything.  A wonderful book for retelling.  Pumpkin Pumpkin is a lovely, gentle story about the life cycle of pumpkins (and all plants).  The Big Pumpkin is also great for retelling and is an adaptation of a folk tale (thinking book genres from chapter 4).  I love reading The Runaway Pumpkin aloud for its rollicking rhythm.  And there are so many others?  What are some of your favourites?

Chapter 5 of Donalyn Miller's The Book Whisperer, Walking the Walk, is all about sharing enthusiasm for reading with students. 


Monday, October 13, 2014

classroom tour 2014 - 15

I love peeking into other people's classrooms.

Here is your invitation to peek into mine.  



My goal is to make our classroom a welcoming place for my students and their families.  
I want it to be a backdrop for the kids' learning and their work. 
I want it to pique their curiosity without being overwhelming. 
I want it to be about the kids who spend a year learning and growing in kindergarten. 


Sunday, October 12, 2014

The Book Whisperer: chapter 4

Happy (Canadian) Thanksgiving.  

I am very thankful for the gift of reading.  A perfect day would definitely include time somewhere warm (either sunshine or cosy wood stove) with a wonderful book.  (And someone to bring me either hot or cold drinks on demand!)

My gratitude to my mum who read books aloud to me and my brother, teaching us about the cadence of language, and who made going to the library to bring home mountains of books part of our regular life routine.  Thanks to my teachers who encouraged a love of reading to the best of their knowledge and ability, especially my high school English teacher whose love of literature was palpable.  And love and thanks to my husband who does not roll his eyes (at least where I can see him) when I drag him to another book store or book selling gift shop "just to look" and come out with a bag of books that I ask him to carry.  

On that note of thankfulness, on to chapter 4, aptly named Freedom to Read, of Donalyn Miller's The Book Whisperer. 


Friday, October 10, 2014

The Dot

The Dot by Peter Reynold's is such a fabulous book that it gets its own day.  

Dot Day!  

We celebrated a bit late this year.  But celebrate we did!



Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Skeleton Hiccups: a Halloween book and activity

hic hic hic

Halloween is just around the corner.

Time to head to the library or local bookstore to find some fun-spooky reading.

One of (the many) books that we read in my kindergarten class sometime in October is Skeleton Hiccups. 


Monday, September 29, 2014

The Book Whisperer: chapter 2

This book has been a wee bit of calm in the storm of the last week.

Hopefully it has been a bit of serenity for the other book study bloggers in their crazy weeks.

We all live in British Columbia, Canada, and we were all on strike since the middle of June.  (It's been nasty - on so many levels.)

A week ago, we got a new contract, and spent last 
week end madly getting our classrooms ready to start school 3 weeks late on Monday.

It has been madness.  Wonderful to get back in our classrooms and see our kids again.  But madness.  

Now, onto chapter two  of Donalyn Miller's The Book Whisperer - Everybody Is a Reader


Monday, September 22, 2014

The Book Whisperer: chapter 1

It's book club time!

I have been wanting to read Donalyn Miller's The Book Whisperer for a while.  I really don't have excuses; the book  has been out for 5 years.  

But now is the time.  Time to seize the day and seize the book.

We are keeping me accountable.

The deal is a chapter a week - posted on Mondays.  Manageable.



Friday, September 19, 2014

25+ sunflower activities for children

I think sunflowers are one of the coolest plants.

Some are amazingly tall.

Their faces follow the sun.

They bring a bit of summer into fall weather.

They feed birds in winter.

And they inspire lots of fabulous activities.

(read all the way down to the bottom, as well as a bunch of wonderful activities, there is a  chance to win one of four $500 prizes)




Wednesday, September 17, 2014

how to make a pillowcase curtain

Curtains are fabulous classroom tools.

They hide clutter.

They soften hard edges.

They are easily cleaned.

They are cheap and easy to make.

And did I mention, they hide clutter
(or activities that are not currently available).


I had a cute little curtain (that luckily, I had brought home to wash over the summer) that hid a shelf full of boring very important teacher books.  

But it was a bit too cute.  And it did not work with my beautiful new rug

It was time for a new curtain.




Saturday, September 13, 2014

tree block alphabet

It has been alphabet week on the picket line.

First it was glass gems, and then wooden blocks.




Tuesday, September 9, 2014

alphabet glass gems

With a $2 investment, modge podge and a bit of time, I have a set of upper and lower case glass gems that look amazing.





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