Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Look Who's In Our Classroom!
One of my favorite books that I read during the first week of school was Chicka Boom.
My hallway bulletin board had a floor to ceiling palm tree on the side with a monkey hanging by it that would ooh ahh if you pulled its tail.
It was a great way to help anxious students calm down. “Do you want to hear my monkey talk?”
On the bulletin board was a monkey with each child’s name. During our Open House treasure hunt, students had to find their name.
Being able to recognize their name was one of our report card standards, so I was always trying to think of fun ways for my students to do that.
The caption on this b. board was: Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Welcome To Our Classroom!
Another year, I skipped the b. board and used a wall to make the display even bigger because I wanted to include alphabet letters.
To get the wiggles out after reading the book, I pass out monkey masks and my Y5's played "Monkey See Monkey Do" and we copied the "Monkey In The Middle."
I know many teachers all over the country also read this book, so I wanted to design lots of activities for a variety of standards to go with it.
The Picka Chicka File Folder reinforces colors, upper and lowercase letters (Common Core State Standard RF.K1d) and shapes; as well as reading and writing.
Click on the link to view/download the 67-page Picka Chicka-Chicka Boom File Folder Packet.
Chicka Boom Boom Look Who’s In Our Classroom is an easy reader class book, that helps students get to know their new friends, reinforces name recognition, as well as upper and lowercase letters. (Common Core State Standard RF.K1d)
The 35-page Chicka Boom Trunk Tricks packet includes a variety of adorable Chicka Boom tree projects that reinforce letters, shapes, patterns, and other report card standards in a unique and fun way.
The packet includes:
Click on the link to view/download Chicka Boom Trunk Tricks
Finish up your Chicka Boom studies with this fun hands-on Chicka Boom snack.
To compliment all of the Chicka Boom activities I have a variety of monkey-themed activities as well.
Click on the link to view/download a variety of easy readers etc. This link will take you to the Monkey section, where I hope you’ll have a barrel of fun!
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“Millions saw the apple fall, but Newton asked why and pursued the answer.” –Bernard Baruch
Use the large road signs as gentle reminder posters for a wall.
Print double ones and hang them back-to-back with a piece of fish line and suspend from the ceiling.
Several “My students are out of this world” signs, hung from the ceiling, dangling down at various lengths in front of your back to school bulletin board, with your students’ first day photographs, would add interest.
Use the smaller ones for a bulletin board boarder, or make bookmarks, a magnet, or cut slits and make pencil toppers for your students.
Hang the “Danger” sign on your door, and suspend the “Quiet Zone Testing” one, on your doorknob when you are assessing.
Use the “Think” sign as a cover for a writing prompt for a “What are your thoughts today?” journal.
Whatever you decide to use the signs for, I hope you find them helpful.
Click on the link to view/download Student Road Signs
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“ I touch the future; I teach.” Ms. McAuliffe
Grammar Can Be FUN When You Make It A GAME!
Since the Goin On A Bear Hunt Punctuation and Capitalization activities were such a huge hit, as promised, I made cat, dinosaur, frog and pig, cards too.
They follow the same format. The beauty of this is, that it empowers students and builds their self-esteem.
Repetition of some activities is important, especially with young children, because they can’t read directions.
Once the teacher has read, explained and modeled an activity and students have done it, they are good to go the next time around.
This independence makes them feel great and the teacher is freed up to work one-on-one with struggling students or ESL children.
A definite win-win all around, and the big reason I set up my tabletop lessons and easy readers the way I do.
By sprinkling the cards around the room and having children search for them, you help get the wiggles out, add some variety into your students’ grammar routine, and make correcting sentences a lot more fun, than simply handing out a worksheet. + it only takes a few more minutes and your students are now excited and ready to “get down to business!”
Because of this, these cards and recording sheets make great Daily 5 or writing center activities and help students nail the Common Core State Standard: RF.1.1
Each set also includes a certificate of praise.
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Do you have a back to school idea or teaching grammar tip you could share with us?
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If everyone took a moment to share, just think how full our bag of tricks would be, and how much easier our lives would become!
“It’s possible we could teach kids anything. I get them to live the concepts. My job is to push them. I want 30 Rocky Balboas, 30 students who are thirsting to learn.” -Joseph Vicari
A Fun Way To Get To Know Your Students
Stamp of Approval Stamps make a great icebreaker for the first week of school and a terrific way to get to know your students + they are an instant back to school bulletin board showcasing your new students!
Send a copy in your Welcome to School - Summer Letter, or tuck them in your Open House packet, so that they can be completed ahead of time, and then shared on the first day of school.
You can also show your example on the first day, so that your students can learn a little bit about you, and then send the stamps home as an assignment for that first day.
How to fill in a stamp:
Students can write, type (using a fun(ky) font), or cut out letters (like a ransom note), or use stickers to make their name.
This goes on the wavy line portion of the cancelled stamp, in the top left-hand corner.
The PLACE where they were born, goes around the top of the circle.
The YEAR they were born, goes on the bottom-middle of the circle.
The MONTH and DAY they were born, goes in the center of the circle.
Months should be abbreviated, unless they are 4 or less letters long.
Places and dates appear on real cancelled stamps; making it personal, makes this assignment more relevant and fun!
Students draw a self-portrait of themselves. (Just a headshot) This needs to be colored. Hair and eye color etc. need to be appropriate, so students can possibly guess whose picture belongs to whom, if the teacher wants to add that activity before the “real” student comes up to share.
Students need to think of their favorite things to do, their hobbies, or sports or “stuff” they are involved in, or possibly what they want to be when they grow up. Basically, anything that represents them or will help us get to know them.
After they have thought up their “list” they need to find pictures, clip art, or stickers of those things and glue them around their self-portrait.
Students write or cut out 3-5 words that describe them. These should be scattered around on their stamp.
Challenge older students to include a word that begins with the same letter as their name. i.e. I chose driven (Diane) for mine.
Students share their stamp with their classmates. I always had my students clap for each person when they were through.
Hang them in the hallway or on a b. board, along with the “Stamp of approval star student” poster.
To add some 3D effects, suspend some glittery stars of various sizes, from fish line, just above the board, at various lengths.
Click on the link to view/download Stamp of Approval Stamp activity
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“Teaching is a lighting of sparks and setting minds aflame;
it’s a creative mind that knows what kind of gasoline to throw on to get it glowing and burning even brighter the next day and the next…” -Diane Henderson
A Rainbow Of Organization!
I LOVE being organized. I guess it’s the neat freak in me.
One of the things that was always a huge mess and really bugging me was my construction paper.
I’d stack it on the shelf and of course the color I wanted was on the bottom, which caused a tug of war to get it out, and piles often tipped over.
Children could not access it, doing something with scraps was a nightmare, and corners and edges were getting dog-eared and torn.
I had to do something! My organizing system actually came about because I had to haul all of it back and forth to the place with a huge collection of die cuts.
Every summer I spent 2 entire days cutting out all the adorable little pieces of whatever, that I needed through out the year, for various projects.
I put the construction paper in 2 plastic files, so I could easily tote them and see at a glance what colors I had.
The first file had the colors of the rainbow. The second, pink, brown, white, buff, black, gray, and multi-speckled.
I separate the colors with green hanging file folders.
I include the various shades as well, and go from darkest to lightest (i.e. see the shades of blue.)
The hanging files are also perfect for putting large scraps of that same color in.
If I get too many scraps, I put the scraps in a separate crate and fold over a piece of that colored paper into a tab and tape it to the top of the file, so that I know what color is inside the files.
I do the same thing for my colored and fancy printed copy paper.
These files come with lids so you can stack them to save on storage space.
The plastic protects the paper, so no more ripped and dog-eared corners. The paper doesn't get dusty nor faded either, and I can see at a glance what colors I need more of.
Another big + is they are portable! When I need construction paper for my students, I simply take out a file and put it where the students can access it.
I explain to them how hard I’ve worked to make this neat and to please help me keep it that way.
We have “Scrap Patrol” to help pick up and put away scraps to teach conservation and responsibility.
I feel teaching life skills and showing students how to be neat and organized is valuable and extremely important.
Children are eager to please, and I praise their efforts. As long as you make clean up fun and give students an easy system they can work with, you are good to go.
If you don't have these files, but have a lot of plastic crates, they would also work and store easily under a desk. Crates also have the little ledges needed to hang a file folder, and can be stacked.
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“To teach is to be full of HOPE!” –Larry Cuban