Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Have you heard of smilebox?

We have been searching for an easy way to share pictures with parents and we are in love with smilebox! It's an incredible website that lets you fill cute scrapbook, slide show, and photo album templates with your own photos and share them through email. Smilebox also lets you print your creations so we always print ours to have in the classroom as class books. Smilebox also has templates for newsletters, invitations, and stationary, and teachers can use it for FREE! It doesn't get better than that! www.smilebox.com

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Shadow puppets

Finding new materials to use on the light table is something that I always have a hard time with, but when I saw some gorgeous shadow puppets on pinterest I was psyched to try shadow puppets on the classroom. Some of my children have been talking about their own shadows, now that we have some spring sunshine, and I remember enjoying shadow play myself when I was very young.

If you search shadow puppets on pinterest you will find some very beautiful examples, but they were a bit too elaborate for my needs.

I made these by printing some clip art animal shapes and tracing them onto black card stock. Ours are glued onto wooden coffee stirrers left over from another class project, but Popsicle sticks, tongue depressors, or plastic straws would work well too, I'm a big fan of using what you have!

Let's share, what have your made for your classroom recently?!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Uses for leftover plastic eggs

Here is a great idea for you after Easter clearance finds! We used our plastic eggs to make math matching game. Here are the super simple instructions: take two sets of plastic eggs, one large size and one mini size, match up the colors and place number stickers, matching numbers on matching colors.

This is an amazingly easy game that can be played in a number of different ways
1. Matching the large number eggs with the small number eggs, when you make a match you get to put the small egg inside the bigger one.
2. For your younger children just have them match the colors.
3. Add a smaller manipulative (ex:plastic beads) and have the children count the number of beads into the smaller eggs, then you can put the smaller egg inside the bigger egg.
4. Use them for visual addition- have the beads already inside of the eggs, the children can dump out the beads from 2 different eggs and count them all together.

How would you use these in your classroom?