Saturday, September 14, 2013

Five for Friday

It's time for Five for Friday.  I missed it yesterday because I went grocery shopping after work, which meant a 45 minute trip into the closest town!  But I bought $400 worth of groceries for $66 using my coupons so I can't complain!

{One}  Because I teach preschool I don't have any students on Friday, so I asked my nephew if he wanted to each lunch with me.  He's in first grade, and he was really excited.  He even gave up his gym time to come each lunch with me in my classroom!

{Two} With a new classroom came a new aide this year.  We happen to go to church together so that was a nice surprise.  When I told her I wanted new curtains to cover my shelves, she bought the fabric and took on the whole project herself!  The previous curtains were red with tiny stars, and there was nothing wrong with them.  I just needed something that would go with my theme (or any theme if I decided to change it from year to year), so black with white polka dots it is!

{Three} I hung lanterns above the book corner to fill some of the space.  We have nice, high ceilings, that I was able to staple right into so those lanterns are not coming down!  Hehe.

{Four} Our first day of school with students is on Monday.  Our program went all day this year, and I can't imagine having 4-year-old's for 7 hours on the first day!  We are only having school for one hour so our students can see the classroom, explore some of the centers and then we're going to read a story and do an art project.  Hopefully this will help them (and their parents!) with their transition to school.

I created an area in my dramatic play center for a "Photo Booth" so parents can take pictures and they can dress up to take silly photos if they want, to calm the nerves and help them feel more comfortable in the room with all of those new faces!

{Five} I had this pole in the middle of my room, and what was I to do but make it into a coconut tree?!  I tore the leaves by hand to make the palm leaves look more natural, and it was looking a little bare.  My aide suggested crumpling up paper into a ball to make coconuts, and of course, I was like "Why didn't I think of that?"  (It's been a long week of home visits and paperwork!!!)  So now we have our very own coconut tree!

Have a wonderful weekend all!

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Coloring Clothespins

While setting up my classroom, I've attempted several craft projects I found on Pinterest.  The newest one I attempted with relatively good success was coloring clothespins for my behavior management clip chart.

I did not have RIT dye, but knew you could use food coloring to dye the clothespins, so I did what anyone would do...I googled it!  You can click on the image above to find the directions I followed for this project.

I have several glass jars I've been saving for a project this fall.  I used those and then washed them out afterwards to use them later.  Glass jars work better because they don't stain, but you could use plastic containers if you don't mind.

The directions said to soak them for an hour, but I soaked them overnight, just in case!

This is what they looked like when the project was finished.  I used Neon food coloring, and the green did not take as well as I wanted it to.  Next year, I will definitely try this again, adding more drops of food coloring, and experimenting with mixing traditional colors with neon to make more fun colors.  I love all of the bright colors and shades Kaley Ann made!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Five for Friday

Wow!!!  Between Labor Day, the first day of school, and my son having surgery yesterday, the week has flown by and Friday has arrived again.  Time for Five for Friday with Doodle Bugs Teaching!

{One}  As I mentioned above, my son had surgery yesterday so we spent the morning at the hospital, and we were able to take him home afterward.  The surgery went well and Noah was such a trooper through the entire procedure.  The nurses couldn't say enough about how successful the surgery was, and the staff at the University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children's Hospital is absolutely amazing!  I wouldn't dream of having my son go anywhere else. :)

{Two}  On Wednesday, we had our Parent Night for preschool.  The night was a success, and I can't wait to meet my students on home visits next week!  

{Three}  My computer broke this Spring, and I finally ordered a new one!  Now that I have started blogging and taking more pictures (so my blog isn't so boring...hehe), I am excited to be able to get started on creating some of the teaching products to match my classroom theme.  

{Four}  Until I start teaching, I have to do something so I've been catching up on episodes of Downton Abbey.  I am not happy with how Season 3 ended.  121 days, 6 hours until I can find out what happens!

{Five}  This time last year, I was teaching kindergarten and had started school already.  I started out the year reading The Kissing Hand and found this FREE 99 page(!) activity from Kinderbabies at TpT.  It is packed full of literacy and math activities to start out the school year.

Monday, September 2, 2013


It's September already!  Where did the summer go?!  I feel like I had the month of June to relax and the rest of the summer was gone.  I am linking up with Farley from Oh' Boy 4th Grade for CURRENTLY September.

LISTENING/LOVING - My grade level partner next door told me that she heard somewhere "Clutter makes you fat" because when you walk in the door at home, you get overwhelmed and go to the fridge or sit on the couch and vegetate.  I made my classroom and my house "skinny" last month because once I got started organizing in my classroom, I couldn't help myself at home.  I'm still working on my house, but I feel better about the progress I've made, and my thoughts have become less frantic as I've gotten more organized.

THINKING - Now that I have my room organized, and we still have two weeks before the school year starts with my students, I know I can make some time in there somewhere to put up a tree!

There's a pole right in the middle of my classroom that would be the perfect focal point.  I think I'm a little afraid to get started and have it turn out horrible because I'm a bit of a perfectionist so this will be interesting!

WANTING - I need your help with this!  I am looking for graphics from TpT that have all of the essential school supplies (i.e. glue sticks, scissors, pencils, crayons, markers, paper) so I can make my own labels for my classroom.  In my search, I will find a few items from each seller, but it's difficult to know if they have them all in one pack.  If you know of some or have used some yourself (or better yet, SELL some), I'd love to know about it!!!

1. Exercise 4 days a week - Now that I'm starting to get into a work routine, I need to extend that into having more of a daily routine that includes exercise.  I feel better and have a much better attitude when I do, and I need to make it much more of a priority.  I love Turbo Fire because of how powerful I feel when I doing it and the motivation her one-liners give me to keep I can accomplish anything!
2. Leave work by 4:00 - Every year, I choose a time that I need to leave the classroom.  I always feel like everything needs to be done RIGHT NOW or it is never going to get done.  But, I can't live in the classroom, so I organize what needs to be done and finish items with the highest priority first.  This year, working in preschool, I will have Fridays to work on prep for the following week.  I have to say, it's going to be difficult to leave all of my prep until Friday because I'm afraid it won't get done in time for the following week!  But I have to leave sometime...

3. Delegate responsibility - I am definitely one of those people that wants to do it myself so it's done right!  In preschool, I'm not the only person in the classroom and I can't do it all myself, so I need to be very intentional and specific about what I delegate to my classroom aide.  At home, my husband is a stay-at-home dad and takes care of our son, who has special needs.  I feel awful about giving him chores to do around the house (and I have to write a list or they don't get done!), but I'm getting better.  It definitely takes a lot of stress off me if someone else can do the work, even if it's not done the same way I would do it.