Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Cat In the Hat Day at School

Even though our school didn't celebrate the book The Cat in the Hat today, my class sure did!  As I mentioned before, our school has a teacher reader exchange.  Basically every teacher in the school (principal included) chooses a book to read to a group of 25 kids.  The book can be a Dr. Seuss book, but doesn't have to be.  The day before the exchange, the teachers take their students around the halls to sign up for a book to have read to them by another teacher.  The sign ups are posted either on the teacher's door or in the hall next to their room. 
Most teachers also include a photocopy of the book so the younger kids actually know what they're signing up for. :)  On the day of the swap, the teachers are to read the chosen book and possibly do an activity to fill up the 20 minutes.  This can be somewhat challenging considering we are entertaining a group of students varying in ages from kindergarten - 6th grade, but regardless it is always fun.
Last year I read the story Stand Tall Molly Lou Melon and passed out fun sized (waterMELON flavored) Laffy Taffy candies.  I felt these went well with the story because of the MELON part, but also in this book the grandmother tells Molly Lou Melon to "Smile big and the world will smile right alongside you."  And as we know, jokes (like the ones on Laffy Taffy) make everyone smile!
This year I decided to read a book I think is great fun too...Diary of a Worm.  Seriously makes me laugh!  I thought about giving out gummy worms or doing some activity to tie it together with the book, but ultimately I went with a Dr. Seuss idea.  We made these Cat in the Hat snacks (as suggested on my prior post).
The kids really enjoyed making them, but loved eating them even more!  I had to of course make them with my own students when  they returned to class!
The other part of this Cat in the Hat day came when one of the teachers on my team offered to let me borrow her how-to draw the Cat in the Hat DVD.  I'm not really sure where the DVD came from to refer it to you, but if you would like to teach your kiddos how to draw the cat too, I did come across this step-by-step tutorial you could follow from Fairy Dust Teaching.  What you'll need to complete this art project is:  white card stock or (12 x 18) construction paper, like what we used, and red & black markers (Sharpies).  And the result will be something a little like these cute buggers my firsties created.

They were so proud of their work, and they had great reason to be!  Aren't they the cutest things ever!?!
The last thing we did was to add a Cats In Hats poem to our poetry notebooks.
As always, we read the poem as a class and looked for rhyming words to highlight.  I try to add a poem a week to these notebooks, most of which I got from Just 4 Teachers to go along with our reading program Treasures.  Every once in a while I throw in a poem that goes along with something else we are studying, holidays, etc.  Pair the poem with a Cat in the Hat coloring page and we were set.

Hope your Dr. Seuss week is going well so far! 

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Cat In The Hat Ideas

After reading The Cat in the Hat next week...because you know you will have to, here are a few clever findings that maybe you can add to your hectic week!
Unfortunately, I saw this idea on Pinterest without a link.  If  you know where it is from, please let me know, otherwise use the picture to figure out how to make this little creation. 
*Update:  The creator of this noodle craft is Sarah Butler (found through Pinterest), but again no link to her blog.  Instead I am linking to her Pinterest.
If you have a couple of empty TP tubes sitting around just waiting to be used on a project, then look no further.  Visit Stuff By Ash to find the templates needed to complete this.
Cat in the Hat art project from Mrs. Karen's Preschool Ideas.
 Here's the same concept, but a different template....using a paper plate and shapes.  This idea comes from Teaching Two.
Need a snack after reading? 
Artisan Cake Company offers this parfait idea using red jello and whipped cream.  Looks delicious!
Or why not recreate the cat using graham crackers, Nilla Wafers, pull apart licorice, white frosting, and mini (baking) M&M's like Oxford Elementary did?  FYI I am totally using this snack idea next week when my school does a teacher reader exchange!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Dr. Seuss CrAzY Hair Ideas

Dr. Seuss week is next week at my school!  Ahh!  Wasn't it just barely Valentine's?  Seriously...things are starting to feel like the end of the year is already approaching with as fast as it's all hitting, and I am not ready for that.  {Ok, well maybe a little.}  Anyway, back to Dr. Seuss.  Not only will it be a CrAzY school week because of all the fun activities, but we also have early out all week and SEP's (parent/teacher meetings).  Sadly, that means I won't be wearing my PJ's to school, and that my friends is one of my favorite days of the year!  Do you honestly think my parents could take me seriously sitting across the table from me with my crazy hair and PJ's?!?  Oh how I wish! 
Speaking of crazy hair day, since that seems to almost always come up during the week, here are some completely awesome hair styles from Bee in Our Bonnet.  I am totally bowing down to this mother right now.  So creative and cute!!!  LOVE!
For Boys:
 For Girls:
And just in case you can't figure out how to create the hair styles by looking at the pictures, follow the link above for the hair How To's.

Do any of these styles seem like something you would try or do you have a fun idea too that you are dying to share?

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Valentine Card Boxes

This year I only have one Valentine card box to complete.  My son says he would like another I-pod box like the one I made when he was in 3rd grade.  We'll see...
If you are trying to come up with an idea, here are a couple of ideas I have come across.
From Danielle's Place, you can recreate your own Valentine love bug out of a milk jug.
Using a graham cracker box (or another box similar in shape and size), create a penguin like found on Crafts N' Things.
Maybe you're looking for something a little more simple?  If that's the case, here's an idea for making a suitcase looking card holder from Plaid Online.
If you have a child who is really into sports, maybe one of these ideas will do the trick for you...
A basketball box from Scrap Happens.
or this football one from PTIT Chef.  I would of course have to find a way to turn it into a Denver Broncos theme though!
In my classroom, we make jumbo card envelopes.  I take about a 18" x 24" piece of tag board and fold it in half so that when finished it measures 18" x 12".  After punching holes in the sides, the kids have to sew the sides and then decorate their envelope with die cut flowers or hearts I have punched out or draw things they love on it.  I will have to snap a picture of one when I go to school tomorrow so you can get the visual more clearly.
So how do you do things in your classroom?  Do you assign it to be an at home project or is it something you put together in class?  I'd love to know.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Easy DIY Valentine Treat Ideas

From Fiskars:

This reminds me of the Christmas gift my son gave his friends for Christmas, which said, "I hope your Christmas ROCKS!"...FYI I recently found a 3 pack of Pop Rocks at the Dollar Store in case you are searching for some!

"I've got a CRUSH on you!" from Monograms and Manicures.  The gift tag has already been created.  
All you need to do is print and sign your name!
"Dear HONEY, won't you BEE mine?"  from Make It Do.
Since honey can be a little pricey, maybe save that gift for a teacher, neighbor or friend.  If you're set on the whole "BEE mine" theme, you could give Bit-O-Honey candies instead.
If you're looking for something catchy and non-edible, buy a package of soldiers from the dollar store and attach a note saying "Love is a battlefield!", "All is fair in love and war!", or "I can't FIGHT this feeling anymore!"...try saying the last saying without singing it! 
Source:  Jacolyn Murphy
From Living with Three Moon Babies, comes this great little gumballs machine that reads "I CHEWS you!"  You can download the gumball machines on her site to create your own.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Valentine Party Ideas

With Valentine's Day just around the corner, if you are currently a room parent or in charge of a party, you may be going into panic mode.  Hopefully a few of the following ideas will ease some stress.
How about a new rendition of pin the tail on the donkey?  Try "pin the lips on the teacher"!!  The Teacher's Wife has a FREE lips pattern you could even use.  Just print it out and have the students color and write their names on the lips!
Mom On Time Out shows you exactly how to create Hershey Kiss Roses.  I think these would be fun for kids to make and take home to their moms as a surprise.  You could even give a bouquet of these to your teacher, friends, etc.
Check out these super cute (Valentine) robots made from a juice box.
Source:  Gifts That Say Wow!
How about making some Love Bugs from The Decorated Cookie.
Speaking of Love Bugs...how about a Love Bug hat to go along with the {above} treat?
Source:  Glue Dots
Need a game?  Here is one from It Matters called Cupid's Arrow. 
Basically what you do is you set {heart shaped if you have them} bowls across the room and place some tape on the floor so the kids will know where to stand.    The kids then load their "arrows" (straws) with a Q-tip one at a time and blow them out, aiming for the bowl across the room.  The team or person with the most Q-tips in the bowl at the end of the time is the winner!
And finally, from Mrs. Schmelzer's First Grade, she has a fabulous post about some ideas that came from her Valentine's class party.  I'm talking a Minute to Win It game, Heart Lava, and another called Broken Heart.  If you still haven't found an idea that interests you from my above suggestions, you need to check out these party ideas.  I think not only does the name "heart lava" sound cute, but so does the game!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Sugarless Valentines, But Still Sweet!

If you're looking for a Valentine idea which doesn't require more candy and sugar, then look no further.  Here are a few great ideas!
Valentine, you RULE!
Source:  Family Fun
You're Just WRITE for me!  (FREE tag)
Source:  What the Teacher Wants
I was SOAPIN' you'd be my Valentine!  (FREE tag)
Source:  My Digital Creations
I WHEELIE like you!

SIP-a-dee-doo-dah! SIP-a-dee-ay!
This picture I found on Pinterst but didn't have a link to where it came from.  If you know, please let me know so I can give credit!
A bag with pieces of sidewalk chalk inside and a note reading:  "Hope this CHALKS up to be a great Valentine's Day!"
Source:  The Barger Family

"You knock my SOCKS off!"
Source:  My Digital Creations

So there you have it.  Some of these ideas might take a little more time to create, but aren't they great!?! 
Do any of these sound like something you might use?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

DIY Valentine Count Down

February 1st already?!?  Where does the time go?  I have come across so many great Valentine's ideas lately so I thought now would be great to begin posting some of my finds.  But first, to get things rolling, here is a DIY Valentine's Day count down from I Love It All with Monica Wright.