Monday, August 11, 2014

Monday Made It

It's Monday and boy oh boy, am I busy making things to get ready for school!
Lots to do, for sure!
Anyone else relate to this quote?
Happy Monday Made It!
If I actually get this post up on a Monday instead of a Tuesday, I'll be setting a summertime record!

I posted last week about the beginning of the year letters that I send home to my students and parents.

The kids are invited to come meet me ahead of time, pick out a cubby and check out the room. It's also a great time to take their picture, show them where to line up and where the bathroom is located. The parents come to fill out important paper work, find out about our schedule and have their questions answered. I also have them make an art portfolio for their child's art and writing samples.

This portfolio has been a huge success and has now received over 1200 visits on my blog! It's super easy to put together but making 30 by yourself is time consuming. I demonstrate how to make it in front of the parents and then they get to work!  It cuts down on my beginning of the year prep and only takes a few minutes for the parents to make.

Last year I had these little shoes on each child's desk. They were lots of work to make but the kids liked them. I spend a ridiculous amount of time tying shoes and thought this might be a fun thing to practice!

This year I enlisted help and made a tag pattern. It went much faster and I think they turned out just as cute as last year's model. If you make these, be sure to lace them BEFORE you glue them down on the main shape of the shoe. Trust me!
These pictures are awful! Sorry, something's up with my camera!

I also spend a lot of time writing names on papers at the beginning of the year. In an effort to alleviate that particular problem, I have a brief writing lesson for the parents at our meeting. We quickly go over pencil grip ( along with some tips to correct improper grips), our handwriting alphabet paper that shows where to begin each letter (perfect to post on the fridge). This is when I also emphasize that I want them To OnLY havE a CaPitaL At the BegInnIng of their CHIld'S NaMe, NoT SpRInkLed ThRoUgHoUt, if you get my drift!

Here's my post from last year:
I always have a mini handwriting lesson for the parents at the Meet N' Greet. I'm sure you've all done this. I send them home with a practice activity and all the supplies and knowledge they need to help their child write their name properly. 

Anyway, look what I found in my dusty, old files. It's all yellow from age but you get the idea.
We cut and taped clear acetate to tag-this was a ton of work. Next, I drew green, yellow and red lines on sentence strip paper to emphasize where to start and stop. Each child's name was printed on the sentence strip with a green dot to show where to begin. All they had to do was slip it into the acetate pocket and write on top of it with a marker. I even sent home a little sponge to wipe it clean! When they were ready they could try without the sentence strip under the acetate (I always gave them a plain sentence strip to slip under the plastic for line guidance).

Now, you can buy the sentence strips with the colored lines, laminate it with their name and they just trace on top and erase. The advantage to the acetate is that they can practice without the name tag underneath. I think I'll do this for my newbies this year. An old idea reborn!

I tuck two pencils into the shoe and attach this little poem:

Before you come to kindergarten there are two things you should do:
Learn to write your name,
And learn to tie your shoes!

I picked up some new aprons today! I'll be posting some songs for the aprons later this week !
Now available at my TPT store Kinder-gardening:

black with floral pocket
The green apron won't be up until next Monday
 blue/grey with black and white floral pocket
blue grey with grey heart pocket
 pink with floral pocket, green ruffle

See ya!
Please leave a comment!


  1. OOOOO Those apron colors are gorgeous! And I LOVE the shoe tying idea! I can't even imagine what I would do with all the extra time I wasn't tying shoes or writing names. :) Love this post, Sandy! <3

  2. Your quote was so me last night. Love the shoes, will be sharing that idea with my kindergarten teacher friends!

  3. I always love coming and reading your posts. You have some simply amazing ideas!

    The Blossoming Teacher

  4. yes! I can relate to that quote, I haven't been sleeping since we went back to school last Thursday, just preparing (and moving the classroom), now that we are getting close to the FIRST day, I'm so weary. Love the aprons! greatest idea ever, Paula

  5. Where can I buy your aprons and the Basic word kit? Couldn't find them on TPT

  6. I want to buy aprons and basic word kit! Where?

    1. Oh dear! That's not good that you can't find the aprons!!! Go to Teacherspayteachers and look under kinder-gardening. You can also search aprons and they'll pop up. Good luck and let me know if you have any further problems!

  7. Found the apron and cards by typing apron and searching through! Thanks!

  8. I love your shoes, they are adorable! They will be a great way to start the process of learning to tie shoes. The aprons are amazing, I cannot wait to do some of these activities. Thank you for your ideas and talent.