I am linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for Five for Friday. Thank you for hosting, Kacey!
By the way, it snowed yesterday. Snowed. April 23. I just felt like we should somehow get bonus points for putting up with that. Anyway, Happy Friday!
Instead of individual browsing boxes, I ordered the mixed sets of these Kris Bonnell leveled books for the last few years from Reading Reading with my textbook money. They come with one copy of each of the different books. I have colored bins that coordinate with my group colors. I fill the bins with leveled readers appropriate for each group.
I love it because when I have a few extra minutes to read with a child, I can easily choose a book that will be just right for that child because they are right there.
These book bins have worked really well for me. The books are just the right length for the children to read and finish, plus the kids love the topics. Lots of them have photographs which the kids really like. We do have lots of the sets of six in the book closet that we love to use for guided reading.
Here are some samples of the insides so you can get an idea. I find the books to be on the "easy" side of the levels, which I like. Don't you hate choosing a "C" leveled text and having it be so hard that you wonder who on earth leveled that book? I know... #teacherproblems- right?
ChatterPix Kids App from Duck Duck Moose. I posted all about what we did with it as well as some ways I thought to use it here.
This sweet little raindrop will show you how we used it for Earth Day.
File this #3 under... What was I thinking?!? Actually, I do love the sand/shaving cream mix. When we were on vacation last year, I saw some moldable sand at Brookstone. I sort of fell in love with it and was sure I would be the most relaxed person in the world if I owned it and could just play with it whenever I needed to.
I didn't buy it. That's probably why I'm not all that relaxed.
I found a post about it here and wanted to try to make it sometime.
I know part of the fun is the mixing- but maybe not with everybody wanting to do it while you do... Touching it is just sort of too irresistible. Look at the eyes on that one on the right... that pretty much says it all.
After it was mixed and we cleaned up a little, and as some of the children were playing with this, I noticed that it has such a calming effect on some of my kids. They are sort of mesmerized by it, sort of like playing with putty does for sensory kids. Sort of like I knew I would have felt with my more expensive sand from Brookstone.
I also made some sight word stones to use in the sand with all of the little construction goodies.
The construction toys work great in goop, too- (cornstarch and water). My own kids used to play with these in goop all the time- but outside is best for that, too, if possible.
If you still need a Mother's Day gift idea, here are some of the things I've done over the last couple years.
I loved this card with the "real" flower. I posted about that here.
I love these sweet ideas!
This idea and free download is from Lovely Little Snippets - and I love it with all my heart. They turned out so precious! And... it's candy, so... what's not to love.
Stefanie was so sweet, sweet, sweet to share this! Thank you, Stefanie!
Here is the front and back up close.
We wrote stories to go with the candy bars about our sweet mother (or grandmother).
Here are some of their precious covers:
Here are some of their precious covers:
Some precious pages:
My mom goes to the gym. When she goes there I miss her.
I love my mommy because she does do good stuff.
I like my mom because she makes me eggs.
I can't live without you mommy because you are so special.
I love my mom because she goes for a walk with me.
Kinzie's Kreations shared this adorable M&M Mom freebie at her blog if M&M's are more to your liking!
The finished products looked like this:
Kinzie shared this sweet printable from Over the Big Moon to go with this treat.
My sweet friend Sarah, from A Sunny Day in First Grade, shared this adorable Mother's Day Simile Poem that we had so much fun doing. Oh, the answers were just precious. They did them on their own and I didn't correct them as they wrote, because I thought moms would like it that way.
This is hard to see, but her mom is as pretty as sparkle, nice as chocolate, and cool as a horse.
I liked "pretty as can be." AND it is sweet as a 'baby' not 'bady.' That darn b and d...
Sarah also included poems for Grandma and Aunt which were just perfect for a couple in my class.
He liked to draw the answer better. I loved the little clown nose, and smart as science.