Friday, October 31, 2014

You Might Be a Kindergarten Teacher...

If this is how you dress for Halloween. Not because it is a book character, but because this is how you dress for Halloween. 


Happy Halloween Y'all!


Thursday, October 30, 2014

Technology Awaits

The district I work for is piloting a laptop program this year. Each school was allotted a number of carts, depending on the student population. The carts hold 12 laptop computers. The aim of the program is for a 2:1 ratio to enhance project based learning. 

Teachers had to apply for the laptop carts. I was lucky enough to be chosen! I am so excited about the program. Yes, I teach Kindergarten. Yes, there are obstacles to overcome. Yes, there are days the technology doesn't work. Yet I am still excited. 

 

All the schools were outfitted with Wi-Fi access over the summer. Remember those obstacles... Well, the student logins didn't work for the first few weeks of school. That is behind us. Except the Wi-Fi network went down last week for 4 days. Window authentication problems; that has been fixed now as well. Logins themselves are another obstacle for Kindergarten; numbers, letters, capital letters, etc... make it challenging. However, my kiddos are starting to get the hang of it all. I have several who can login with no help at all. Baby steps. My goal is to be at 80% by December. I know I have a couple kids who may need help all year. That is just fine.

I am fortunate enough to have 6 desktops in my room. Combine those with the 12 laptops and I am at a 1:1 ration. (Yes, I only have 18 students) This ratio is much better for my class. The kids don't have to log out and login when they get to a computer, I can have Google Chrome save the anonymous passwords. Ones I create for sites like www.internetbuttons.org or Education City; nothing that is tied to their district information.

Right now we are using our laptops to enhance our learning. My small group time is a digital rotation. The centers are as follows: teacher, computer, iPods, library (which as a Nook color), learning games. I have an aide during centers, she helps with logins and works with the kids at the learning games. I will be talking more about all my digital centers throughout the year. I am still tweaking the whole idea. I plan to incorporate Voice Thread and ActivInspire for digital storytelling. I have the iPods and Nook which can be used for different activities as well. Stayed tuned to hear about our progress.

There is a downside to the laptop cart. The cart itself. It sits directly behind my teacher computer. It has a nice large flat surface. Seeing that I am a pile maker, not a filer, it regularly has lots of papers on top of it. Oh well, at least I can find the stuff.


Sunday, October 26, 2014

What's Up This Week

A new week is upon us, so what's up with Krogh's Kids. I get to read on of my favorite books...


There are so many comprehension activities to go along with the book. Because of its repetitive nature, the kids easily remember the story. The kids love adding the sounds as I read and become part of the story telling. I will be adding the felt pieces to our library center for independent retelling.

This year I am adding a new piece to the week, the video. How I have missed this all these years, I do not know. It doesn't matter now. I can't wait to share it this week.



What's up with you this week?

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Easy Felt Board Pieces for Story Retelling


I wanted to find an activity to engage my students in story telling and story retelling. I wanted it to keep the students interested and be specific to the books we have been reading, or just fun topics. I've been using a felt board in my library center for a couple of years, with limited resources. After a quick Google search, I realized I could make any felt board pieces I wanted. With the proper supplies. 

First stop Amazon, I buy most office supplies from Amazon. I live in the country and going to Wal*Mart, Target, or an office store is not a 'quick trip'. Instead I pay for Amazon Prime and shop online. 

I purchased the Avery t-shirt transfers and a pile of white felt. I printed some graphics onto the transfer. Your possibilities are only limited by your clipart supply. Just remember to print in Mirror mode if you are printing text or it will be backwards. 



Following the instructions, I preheated my iron, folded my pillowcase, and iron the transfer to the felt. 

  

These transfers just need  a few minutes to cool off before peeling it away from the felt. 


Presto, instant felt board pieces. These monsters are from www.picklebums.com They are just for random story telling. 


This year I have added pieces for Mouse Paint, Brown Bear, Brown Bear, and Big Red Apple to my retelling library. The students still play with the sets several weeks after we are done with the book. I leave the book in the bag with the felt to assist in the story retelling. 



Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Posting

Goal: To post to this blog two times a week. 

Not necessarily the same two days a week. I CAN blog two days. I CAN write to posts a week. I CAN do this. 

Not promising anything earth shattering in the life of this Kindergarten teacher, but I WILL blog twice a week.