Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Day 4 of the 2014 NAEYC Convention

The bad part was setting my alarm clock for a Saturday morning...
The great part was going back to the NAEYC Convention for some more great inspiration...
I loved a presentation by Judy Ross on extending read-alouds through scientific inquiry and math explorations.  I will definitely be having my students create aluminum foil boats to see if their gingerbread man cookies can float on water.  We will also be counting how many coffee filter "caps" a student can wear....
I collected lots of great ideas from this presentation.

So, in celebration of having 998 Likes on Facebook....
And having picked up lots of great freebies at the NAEYC Convention....
I am going to give a way a bag of goodies to one person who comments on this post.

The winner will receive
3 items (of your choice) from my Teachers Pay Teachers Store
A T-shirt from Follet:  Red: A Crayon's Story by Michael Hall (XL)
The Book:  You, Me, and the ABCs by Michael J. Rosen
The Book:  Their Name is Today Reclaiming Childhood in a Hostile World by Johann Christoph Arnold.
2015 Classroom Craft Calendar by Discount School Supply
Samples of Scholastic's My Big World (Nov-Dec) and Instructor magazine
Samples of Highlight's High Five Celebrating Early Childhood
Assorted posters, coupons, and hand outs
In a bag from Highlights.

Please comment here with your favorite November or December classroom activity.  I will choose my favorite. The winner will be chosen on Monday, November 17th and must be a resident of the U.S.  

Good Luck!

Have you signed up for the Gingerbread Exchange yet?


Saturday, November 8, 2014

Day 3 of the 2014 NAEYC Conference

On Friday morning, I saw Michael J. Rosen present on his book, You, Me, and the ABCs.  He shared many wonderful multi-sensory ideas for caregivers to use in introducing letters to children.  My new favorite is having the kids (sitting in a chair) "write" letter with the toe of one foot.  I will be using this for sight words too!  We were each given a copy of the book in both English and Spanish.  They are available in bulk for as low as $2 a copy by contacting youmeabcs@icloud.com if your school might like to order them for parents.

I also loved a presentation by Peter Nosalik on Learning math without knowing it: Fun ways to integrate early numeracy into all subject areas.  

He shared great ideas for combining numeracy, art, and science.  One of the items he shared were these Straws and Connectors.  I am already a HUGE fan of these.  I purchased them in
August to improve the choices in the block center.
My students love to build large structures with them at center time.  We have also used them to create cubes, rectangular prisms, etc.  They are QUIET.  I store them in a clear shoebox so they do not require a lot of shelf space.  I find that girls are just as drawn to them as boys.
Peter pointed out that they could be used to show how long a whale or dinosaur would be.  I can't wait to try that!  (This is an Amazon affiliate link, but the views I am sharing are my own.)

Check back in the next few days.  I have picked up so many great freebies from all the vendors here, that I have decided to bundle some of them as a giveaway!


Thursday, November 6, 2014

Day 2 of the 2014 NAEYC Conference

Today was another amazing experience!  There is no way that I can fit it all in one blog post....
It started with a great presentation called Scientific inquiry: Independent activities for science centers in early childhood classrooms by Robbie Polan.  One of my favorite ideas from this session was to send home a Scientist of the week kit (including lab coat) for each child in the class to do an experiment with their family.  We got to see and explore Robbie's wonderful assortment of science trays.  The great news is that she shared her Wiki which includes photos of each science center and all the information you need to put them together.  The Wiki is completely free. (Disregard the request for access- everything is available to anyone.)   Gotta love such a generous teacher! Here's the link: earlychildhoodscience.pbworks.com. Enjoy!

I'll be sharing more that I discovered today in future posts.  For now, I just want to share a photo that was taken of me with Vanessa Levin of Pre-K Pages at a blogger get-together this evening.

I got to meet the most amazing group of bloggers and take home some really sweet goodies.  And I get to go back to the convention again tomorrow!


Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Day 1 of the 2014 NAEYC Conference

Lucky me- the NAEYC is holding their annual conference in Dallas this week, and I get to go to it!  It was about a 40 minute drive for me, but I sat next to teachers from as far away as Costa Rica!

This morning,  I attended a wonderful presentation on Conscious Discipline called Discipline for the Most Demanding: From Chaos to Calm by Dr. Becky Bailey & Kim Jackson.  They were a lot of fun to listen to and they really GET the real issues we all deal with.  Yes, we did get up and do all the motions. There are many, many, many free resources at: ConciousDiscipline.com.  

In the afternoon, I attended Kindergarten and the Common Core It's as easy as ABC! presented by Kathy Brown and Sarah Martino.  Wow- they are two inspiring teachers!  Sarah student taught in Kathy's classroom many years ago and they really made a connection.  They have a TeachersPayTeachers Store called Can You Read It? Yes We Can!
I collected lots of ideas from them.  My students will love their  songs for Character, Setting, Plot, and Reading for Information.  I am also looking forward to using their idea of having each student in the class write a letter to another classmate (and the classmate reads it) to break up the routine of writing in journals every day.  They gave away many door prizes.  I won their Patriotic Math and Literacy Bundle.  I will be busy printing before Veteran's Day!  
If you want to see Kathy and Sarah yourself, here are links to two free webinars:

Yes, it was worth the hours of planning it took to get ready for a sub for THREE DAYS!  I can't wait to go back tomorrow morning for more great classroom inspiration.