Saturday, January 4, 2014

Five for Friday! Happy New Year!!

I'm not sure I have enough to join in on this week's Five for Friday. As always, thanks to Doodle Bugs for hosting!

We had a wonderful break and loved having our boys home. I survived the What Was My Husband Thinking Holiday Party. It was actually really fun and may have to become a yearly event! Who'd have thought. I think I don't like entertaining because I feel like I entertain everyday for my 5 year old buddies...

Anyway, I headed back into my classroom today and packed up all the holiday decorations and brought out the penguins and snowmen. Here we go with Martin Luther King Day, Chinese New Year, 100th Day of School, Groundhog Day, Valentine's Day and Presidents' Day. I probably forgot something...

Here's some random for you all...

I prepped for our New Year Resolution Bulletin Board. 
I decided to use the words "I will try" instead of "I will." Resolutions can be tough to commit to (just ask the size 6 pants that are gathering dust in my closet) and it just somehow seemed more gentle.

I love my 
I love all the TLC projects and usually have done many by this time of year. Maybe it's because of my larger class size that I haven't tried any so far. Well, it's overdo! Time to teach them how to make circles out of squares and nothing lends itself better to this skill than making snowmen!
I like to have them do the same corner cutting for the scarf and hat.
These will adorn our winter bulletin board. I'll try to post them by next Friday. I love the 5 year old version best.
We're California kids and we look to be heading into a serious drought. Snow is not to be seen anywhere! I've been watching the news and noticing the freezing weather in other states. We've been going for walks in 70 degree weather while my friend, Carolyn from Holding Hands and Sticking Together, has inches of snow in her town. She'll be posting lots of fun snow ideas on Monday and I'll be the first one to grab some good lessons! 

Because we have no snow, my poor babies have to have snowball fights with marshmallows. Not with the small size in the picture! Last year I found the most ridiculous marshmallows ever! They were huge and I seriously doubt they would ever fit in a mug. They were too big; I like the regular sized marshmallows. No tears ( make sure they're not stale, by the way).

Anyway, we push the furniture out of the way, draw a line down the middle of the room with chalk, and divide the kids into two groups, one on each side of the line. When I say "Snowball Fight!" they start throwing. When I say "Freeze," they take a knee (like in soccer) and we count to see who has more on their side. This game is actually called "Clean the Room." 

You can also play sight word snowball fight where you write their sight words on paper, scrunch them up and throw them like snowballs. They unscrunch the ball and have to read the word. 

Sometimes, it's important to just have fun. 

Beware, there are always a few who are pelted a little too hard. Be sure to have the gentle throwing talk before you start. 
Here's our attempt a few weeks ago at a snowman. I tried to show them how to roll the snowball so it gets bigger and bigger. They were amazed.

Time to change up our discipline plan. I know we aren't held responsible for teaching them their coin names and values in kindergarten anymore, but let me tell you, money talks!! I wrote about how I use the jars and coins on this post. The kids really respond and we have lots of fun. There are so many cute poems and songs about money that help as well. We review with them every morning when we do the calendar.

I commute 40 minutes every day to work and I love to sip on tea or coffee as I drive. My friend gave this to me for Christmas and I LOVE it. It holds two cups of coffee and the plastic lid doesn't rust. Perfect!

Favorite gift for my classroom. It's a little speaker that allows me to play music from my phone. Now, I realize that most of you people are way, way more tech savy than Mrs Welch, but this was huge to me. I can't wait to use it next week! Dance time!
I'm off to do some more prep for next week! I hope you all had a wonderful break and are geared up for all the winter celebrations. Thanks for stopping by.


  1. Love, love, love the chick skipping away. I just read with great interest your bank behavior system. Sounds like an awesome way to teach children coin values. I am wondering about how much money do you end up spending on this? Your snowmen are beautiful. I love the idea of cutting corners to make circles. We've had too much snow already - 3 snow days :( I need my kiddos at school so I can teach them.

  2. The money jars work like magic. They certainly learn their coin names and values with ease when it's attached to a prize! I like it for another reason. The little ones who are always on their best behavior can easily be rewarded. I have a large change jar at home. The first thing we do is sort out coins, take out the magnifying glasses and carefully check both sides. I try to have at least $2 in pennies, $3 in nickels, $5 dollars in dimes and $8 dollars in quarters. Remember, they don't keep this money forever. It goes back into the "bank" every time they exchange. I hope to get every penny back!!! You really do have to watch that they don't bring money from home. I get my baby jars from the mommies in my class with babies at home.

  3. OH my that is the most precious snowman! Look at all the hair sticking out of the top! Haha! Oh we must try this at school when it snows. I hope you don't mind if I show them this picture before we get started - can't wait to see their versions!
    Whimsy Workshop Teaching

  4. Hi Susanna! We'd be honored to have you show off our snowman. Isn't it something that my littles didn't know how to make a small snowball and then roll it until it gets bigger? Have a great weekend!