Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Can’t Miss December Books

As you are pulling out your books for December, consider adding these to your list. Some are sweet, others are educational and several are laugh-out-loud funny. Plus we’ve included some ideas for reading follow-up. Let us know if you have some good December books we should be sharing with our classes!

Useful Ideas for Useless Items

Ever wonder what to do with those miscellaneous things you receive with a purchase or package, like the plastic tripod in the middle of your pizza? Do all teachers feel compelled to save them, thinking they might be useful someday? (It’s not just me I hope!)

I purchased a camera a few months ago. It was very small and came packaged in a sturdy, see-through, plastic box. I couldn’t throw that box away. Instead, I use it as a display case for untouchables. The students love the excitement and feel like they are looking at something rare and important. Plus, everything looks cooler and fancier in a showcase!

So send us your ideas of what to do with all those plastic peanuts, pizza tripods and the dozens of empty contact cases I have in my drawer!
Ann Marie

Monday, November 11, 2013

Pick a Peck of Pointers

Inspiring our students to want to read posters and word walls used to be challenging. Then we discovered the magic of pointers. Since we know our students enjoy variation as much as we do, we couldn’t just give them the traditional pointers with colorful wands and pointing hands.

Instead, whenever our students want to read posters and our word wall, we like to give them unique items to point with like plastic fruit, vegetables and magic wands.
Plastic fruits and vegetables are available at craft stores and Wal-Mart. We make the magic wands out of wooden dowels. (Color the dowel with black marker and wrap a piece of white electrical tape around the end.) Other pointer ideas include fly swatters, pencils with big erasers, plastic drink stirrers, sticks with pom-poms glued to the top, decorative pipe cleaners and chopsticks. The wide variety motivates everyone to pick a pointer and read. 

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Turkeys are Hightailing it Out of Town!

Turkeys are always trying to get out of town before Thanksgiving. My students made their own terrified turkeys (from a picture I found online) and chose their worldly destinations. I snagged a clip art suitcase and reproduced it on cardstock. We used blank labels to sticker the suitcases with the names of our final destinations. We then added a picture on an index card of our turkeys doing something in that place. For example, this turkey in India is playing with a tiger.

We added to the theme with travel border and an “International News” sign I found in the local Dollar Tree’s teacher section.