1 2 3 Come Do A "Getting to Know You" Craft With Me
My favorite classes in school even up through college, were those that we had a real community going.
These were usually conducted by my favorite teachers, who felt that a classroom was sort of like a family.
They made time to make us all feel welcome, safe, and important. I truly felt cared about.
One of the ways they promoted these feelings was that they spent some time getting to know us.
With that in mind, I do a variety of BTS “Getting to Know You” activities for an entire month, as well as several throughout the year.
Students seem to love sharing things about themselves, so they really enjoy these activities.
My newest creation, "Getting to the Point," is a pencil writing prompt craftivity. It's quick, easy & fun, with simple prep.
This variety allows you to differentiate your lessons within your class, and still have everyone working on the same activity.
The activity also suits different grade levels too.
Younger students can simply do one page, while older children will enjoy making a complete, 6-page booklet.
After choosing the pages you want, students simply fill in the information, trim their "pencil page" then staple them to the top of the inside of their cover.
For example, for one of my samples, I glued the "selfie page" to the inside of the cover.
Speaking of the cover, it's a double-patterned pencil, which students trim AROUND then fold over, creating the booklet.
For extra pizzazz & to make this a bit of a keepsake, have students glue their school photo to the eraser. If you do this, then have kiddos DRAW a selfie of themselves, or omit that page.
"Get to the Point" is great for your writing block or fun as a homework assignment too.
Completed projects make a sweet bulletin board.
I’ve included 4 pencil-themed posters to enhance your display.
I've also added a Which is a writing prompt poster: “Life without _____________ is pointless.” The other posters can also be used to kick start journal writing.
Icebreakers are a perfect way to help build that cameraderie & team spirit of working together.
They are especially important during the 1st month of school when students are a bit nervous and looking at a very diverse bunch of strangers, listening to rules-rules & more rules.
One of the icebreakers my kiddos really enjoy is the M & M or Skittle Game, which has been around awhile, going by as many names as there are colors, and can be played in a variety of ways as well.
These are my versions. I hope you find them useful.
Thanks for stopping by. I hoping you and your students really enjoy “Getting to the Point” and popping a sweet treat as they build team spirit.
Wishing you a wonderful school year.
"Don't be afraid of pressure. Remember that pressure is what turns a lump of coal into a diamond." - Unknown
1-2-3 Come Do A Back To School Rainbow Craftivity With Me
Back to school can be a bit scary for students. "I don't know anyone!" is a common cry for many.
With that in mind, I like to build a classroom community, where my students feel safe and have an opportunity to get to know each other.
I truly believe you have less discipline problems, if children have made friends and feel cared about.
Thus, I do a "getting to know you activity" each day for the first week of school, and continue with at least one additional activity each week for the rest of the month. This is truly time well spent!
When students feel part of a team, they are happier and achieve more. There's also accountability, which goes hand-in-hand with behaving.
I'm a firm believer of the quote: "There's no "I" in TEAM!" So let's build that commUNITY! Your students will love you for it, and have a ton of fun getting to know eachother.
I just finished a quick, easy & super-fun “getting to know you” (print & go) craft for this very purpose. I call it "Color Me Happy!"
The craftivity has a variety of options, so you can easily diversify the activity for different abilities & grade levels.
There are two rainbow options, the one "spilling from a cloud" can be cut out or snipped into a rectangle, for easy cutting.
The 2nd one is a rainbow arc pattern. It comes in both a full-page size, as well as a smaller, two-on-a-page pattern.
You can offer your students a choice, or simply pick which one you think is most appropriate for your students.
After coloring their rainbow, children think of something that they really like, that matches that colorful stripe on their rainbow, then they write that word down.
For example, a favorite red thing of mine is strawberries.
Older students can attach the larger rainbow to the top of a writing prompt worksheet, where they can write more than one example.
If your kiddos are like mine, they absolutely LOVE sharing things about themselves & will find it difficult to limit their "favorites" to just 3 per color.
I’ve also included a “directions poster” for this option. If you do this, be sure & include the poster on your bulletin board.
Completed projects make a wonderful BTS bulletin board or hallway display, and also look terrific suspended back-to-back, swirling & twirling from the ceiling.
As a fun way to get to know each other, before hanging, have everyone share one or two of their favorite colorful things.
I’ve included 6 posters to enhance your display & add extra pizzazz.
These can also be used for conversation starters, an interesting discussion or additional writing prompts.
* A “Chalk” behavior modification, positive reinforcement activity, that will help promote working as a team to achieve a desired goal, building self-esteem at the same time.
* Black & White “color me” headers, for a sidewalk chalk treat Baggie, as well as patterns in full color for preschool, kindergarten, & first grade, with a blank template for you to fill in with any other grade.
* I’ve also included a generic one to give at anytime of the year.
* A “Chalk Talk” bear poster you can write a daily message on.
* A “Chalk Talk” kitten poster wishing children a “purrr-fect” day.
* 2 “Chalk Talk” (I had a nice time at school today. These are a few of the things that I did:) writing prompt worksheets.
Well that's it for today.
Blessings to you & yours for a stress-free & joy-filled time, as you get ready for back to school. May it be the best year yet!
"Count your rainbows, not your thunderstorms!" -Allyssa Knight
1-2-3 Come Do Some "Wemberly Worried" Activities With Me
No matter what grade I taught, to get students excited about writing, all I had to do was incorporate a bit of craftiness, to get & hold their attention.
With that in mind, I designed these super-fun writing prompt craftivities, which were inspired by Kevin Henkes’ book, “Wemberly Worried”, an all-time favorite back to school story.
I think realizing that others also have fears, helps children not feel so alone when dealing with their own emotions; especially if they find someone who shares the same worry (Like Wemberly & Jewel).
Hopefully, these various writing prompts will provide cathartic fun.
1. There are 14 cover options for the “Sometimes I worry about…” craftivity, which includes 5 girl & 5 boy patterns.
Students color & draw in the facial features. There’s also a generic pattern, plus one featuring Wemberly, as well as a blank template where students can draw themselves inside the “worry circle”.
The cover is then glued to the top of their writing prompt so it flips up.
2. So that you can do a variety of quick, easy & fun writing activities throughout the week, I’ve also included 4, “point of view” postcards, where students pretend they are Wemberly and then write a postcard to a classmate.
3. Students need to know that everyone worries; it’s normal and there are coping skills to help. Which is why I also designed the “Flip the Face” (Mice Advice) craftivity.
Students color, cut and glue Wemberly’s face together, so that it flips up to reveal something they do to help with their worries.
I think this prompt is easier for students to “share” because they feel they are helping others.
4. As another story extension, I’ve also included several Venn diagram options, where students compare Jewel with Wemberly, as well as Wemberly to themselves.
For a fun icebreaker, have students partner up, and do the “Venn Friend” activity, which make an adorable back to school bulletin board.
5. A discussion helps to alleviate fears as well, so I’ve included a whole-group activity, comparing young people’s worries with those of adults.
6. To help get rid of worries, I’ve also included 2 worksheet options, where students write their worries on a large W or “pencil page”, then rip their worries into small pieces, ball them up into a wad, then “toss their cares into the trash”.
7. On the same order, is “Give your worry warts away”, where students give their warts to Wharton the toad, who never worries about anything.
The warts are simply colorful stickers they sprinkle on one of two toad options.
To expedite coloring, I ran the patterns off on tan construction paper. Students add some shading with crayons.
On the back of Wharton, they write down 3-8 worries that they have, numbering them as they go.
The "worry ball" that Wharton sits on says: Don't Worry Be "HOppy". While students are working, I play Bobby McFerrin's song. Click the link to have a listen.
I've included several photo posters of real toads to help introduce your lesson, then later they can spice up your bulletin board display.
The packet includes:
* A “Chalk” behavior modification, positive reinforcement activity, that will help promote working as a team to achieve a desired goal, building self-esteem at the same time.
* Black & White “color me” headers, for a sidewalk chalk treat Baggie, as well as patterns in full color for preschool, kindergarten, & first grade, with a blank template for you to fill in with any other grade. I’ve also included a generic one you can give at anytime of the year.
* A “Chalk Talk” bear poster you can write a daily message on.
* A “Chalk Talk” kitten poster wishing children a “purrr-fect” day. Plus...
* 2, Chalk Talk ("I had a nice time at school today. These are a few of the things that I did:" ) writing prompt worksheets.
Well that's it for today. Thanks for stopping by.
It's the middle of August, so my feet have hit the floor running. My "To Do" list is way too long, but it's also a ton of fun.
Wishing you a zippidy-do-dah kind of day, filled with lots of zip and not so much "to do" dah.
"You're off to great places. Today is your day. Your mountain is waiting so get on your way!" - Dr. Seuss
1-2-3 Come Do Some "First Day Jitters" Activities With Me
Do you read “First Day Jitters” by Julie Danneberg?
It’s one of my all-time favorite back to school books. My students absolutely LOVE the surprise ending.
With that in mind, I decided to make 3 different "Jitter" crafts, to help students sequence and retell the story. They are a super-fun transitional activity after you're done reading.
First up is the “First Day Jitters” flip the flap, schoolhouse booklet.
So that you can differentiate your lessons, I’ve included a simple flip booklet with just 4 pages for little ones, as well as pattern pages for a super-cool schoolhouse, where the pages are cut down the middle, so the "double-doors" of the school house flip open on both sides.
I purposely did not number the pages, so you can check comprehension.
This also allows you to choose less pages for preschool students, who can easily sort beginning-middle-& end, then retell the story with a limited number of “picture prompts”.
Simply run the schoolhouse pattern off on construction paper or card stock. Students color & trim.
Open the doors to the schoolhouse to retell the story.
Students color, cut & collate the pages into a little booklet, which is then glued to the base of the schoolhouse.
For writing practice, I’ve also included several prompt options that are written on the schoolhouse base patterns. Simply choose which is most appropriate for your kiddos, or you could give them a choice.
Next up is a super-simple "First Day Jitters" storytelling wheel.
If your kiddos are like mine, they will really enjoy making a wheel of their own. It’s a wonderful activity to transition to after reading the story.
To once again grab my students’ attention, I share my sample as a story review, then ask, “Who’d like to make one?” Woo Hoo for excited enthusiasm!
As a whole group, when everyone is done with their craftivity, practice retelling “First Day Jitters” using the wheel manipulative.
Everyone starts by turning their wheel to the “pie slice”, where Mr. Hartwell is calling to Sarah. Pick a child to explain what’s happening in that ”beginning of the story” graphic.
Continue to turn the wheel, calling on different students to tell you about that portion of the story.
To check comprehension, and reinforce the “sequencing a story” standard, I’ve also included a “color, cut & glue” sequencing worksheet.
Use the larger, colorful pattern for a whole group activity with younger kiddos.
Print, laminate & trim the patterns. Attach the grid to your white board, then pass the pieces out to your students.
"How does the story start?" "Who has that story piece?" That child comes up and places it on the grid. (I attach magnet dots to the backs, but you can also use Velcro or tape.)
Students color the story elements on the “slider strip” then cut and glue it together.
With just six, nice-sized graphics, this is easy peasy for even preschool children, making it perfect for explaining the beginning-middle & end of a story too.
As children pull on the end of the “slider-strip” the various pictures go through the “window” on the “door” of the schoolhouse, so that students can take turns retelling the story to a partner or reading buddy, then take their slider home to share with their family, once again practicing these standards.
All three packets include black & white patterns, as well as colorful ones, so that you can quickly & easily make an example to share.
As another way to assess comprehension, as well as include more writing practice, I’ve also included a “Here’s What Happened…” worksheet, which can be done independently, or as a whole group with younger children. This worksheet is included in all three packets as well.
No matter if you're flippng & flapping, or turning & learning, or simply sliding along, I hope you have an absolute blast with your new students.
Today's featured FREEBIE is also a little something for back to school.
I found an "author unknown" quote in various place on the internet, and decided to revamp & expand it, making this "poster poem" appropriate for a teacher to share with their students.
You can hang it up as a poster, or tuck it in your "Welcome Packet". Just a little something fun for "Meet & Greet the Teacher" night too.
Well that's it for today. Thanks for stopping by.
As we head into the weekend we will be topping 90 degrees. I'm so grateful that we have air conditioning in our home.
Despite the heat, I may venture out to walk my poodle pup and water the flowers. Wishing you a relaxing and super-fun summer & jitter-free school year.
"Summer: Hair gets lighter; skin gets darker. Water gets warmer; drinks get colder. Music gets louder; nights get longer. Life gets better in the good ole' summertime. " -Unknown
1-2-3 Come Do Some Writing Prompt Crafts With Me
Whether you're looking for a little something to save your sanity, and fill up a bit of time during the last week or school, or you need a writing prompt for back to school, you'll “TOE-tally” love the versatility of my 2 newest packets.
I call these “double duty” writing prompt crafts because I’ve included patterns for the end of the year, as well as ones for back to school.
First up is the super-cute "TOE-tally" writing prompt packet, which includes 3 different writing prompt crafts. Plus each of those has several options too!
All of the writing prompts use the “TOE-tally” play-on-words.
The graphics vary, but all feature cute little toes somewhere in the picture.
For the 1st option, the “shorts” of the child flip up to reveal the writing prompt.
There are 4 black & white boy options for students to choose from, as well as 4 girl patterns.
Since completed projects make an adorable bulletin board, I've included a set of matching posters for your display.
All of the craftivities have a colorful option as well, so that teachers can quickly & easily make an example to share.
To give you some ideas, I’ve also included my completed writing prompt samples.
The 2nd option is a card. The sweet graphics feature 10 toes peeking out of a pair of flip flops.
Attach to an end or beginning of the year treat for your students.
I buy the bags of mini candy bars or Skittles at The Dollar Store.
They usually have 10-12 in a bag, so it's an inexpensive little surprise, that's so appreciated by my kiddos.
I have matching bulletin board posters for this craft as well.
Finally, the 3rd option sports a child chilling out under a beach umbrella, which flips up to reveal the prompt.
The other writing prompt craftivity packet is entitled, "Steppin' Into ..." These craftivities also serve double duty.
End of the Year Option:
Students trace and cut out one of their feet & then glue it to the base of their flip flop.
To add extra pizzazz and 3D pop, the “straps” for the top of the flip flop, are strips of paper that stick up.
Adding a heart with a school photo creates even more interest, making this a sweet keepsake as well.
They might also like to add glitter for “nail polish” & a flat-backed “rhinestone” for a toe ring.
Students glue their completed foot to one of the corners of their “Steppin’ Into Summer…” writing prompt paper.
There are 4 black & white options for students to choose from; as well as 2 colorful ones, so that teachers can quickly & easily make an example to share.
Completed projects make a terrific bulletin board.
I’ve also included a poster for the center of your summer display, plus a different one for your back to school bulletin board.
Back To School Option:
Summer flies and school has a way of “sneaking” up on you, so this “flip up” sneaker craft, features a pair of tennis shoes.
The black & white “cover” pattern, can be colored with markers or crayons, or you can expedite things & run the template off on a variety of colors of construction paper.
At the top of the sneakers is a glue tab, which is glued to the top of the matching blank base. This “hinge” is flipped up to reveal the completed writing prompt underneath the cover.
There are two prompt options:
Option 1. “Here’s how I feel about stepping into a new school year!”
I’ve also included patterns for “Here’s how I feel about stepping into 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th or 5th grade…” with a blank option, so you can write in a different grade.
Option 2. “As you step into a new school year, here’s some advice:” For this end of the year writing prompt, your students write some advice, to your new students coming in the fall.
Tuck these away, then on the first day of school, lay them on your students’ desk, or attach to a locker door in the hallway.
If you’re a Pete the Cat fan, this “sneaker craft” is a fun activity that you can transition to, after reading one of Pete’s shoe stories.
A child's blue hand print topped with sneakers makes this a cute keepsake.
Well that's it for today. Thanks for stopping by.
I think we've skipped spring here in Michigan, as we seem to have jumped from winter (which lasted into April), right into summer, with record-breaking 90 degree temps for May!
Have to dash and water my flowers before it gets too hot.
Wishing you lots of "fun in the sun" as well.
"When the weather is hot, keep a cool mind. When the weather is cold, keep a warm heart.." - Ajahn Brahm
1-2-3 Come Do Some Versatile Writing Prompt Craftivities With Me
Sometimes when I'm designing something for a particular thing, it turns out that I can also use it for something else; as once a crafty little pattern is made, it's easy to tweak the writing prompt portion, so that it fits for other times of the year.
Such is the case for several of the Mother's Day craftivities I just finished; so I included patterns appropriate for the end of the year, as well as back to school.
Today, I'm featuring 3 of them, along with today's featured FREEBIE.
First up is the "berry" versatile strawberry packet. I’ve included a back-to-school pattern that says: “I had a ‘berry’ special summer because…” as well as an end of the year template: “This school year was ‘berry’ special because…”
Run the summer strawberry off on hot pink with lime green leaves; then see wonderful improvement in your students’ writing, when they complete the other prompt, at the end of the year.
I’ve also included another pattern to make a “Thank you ‘berry’ much!” card, which you can give to volunteers who’ve helped your class, the secretary or whoever gave you a helping hand throughout the year.
Flip the card up to reveal a picture of your class holding a thank you sign or letter cards spelling the words out, then have everyone sign it.
Another pattern is for a Mother’s Day card: “My (mom, mommy, mama, mum, grandma) is ‘berry’ special because…” Have students make hand print “leaves” for that keepsake touch.
Finally, the "fruity treat" is a little gift you can give your students at the beginning or end of the year:
"I hope your summer is 'berry' special just like you." or . . . "I'm wishing you a 'berry' special year.
Attach the strawberry tag to a berry-flavored juice box or package of Skittles.
Next up is the "....And That's Something To Tweet About!" writing prompt bird craftivity. Just like the strawberry, you can use it for back-to-school, (“I had a great summer!), or at the end of the year (“I had a great year in school) and that's something to tweet about!"
I’ve also included a variety of writing prompt options suitable for Mother’s Day as well. “My (mom, mum. mommy, mama, grandma) is special and that’s something to tweet about!”
There are blank wing and “hang tag” patterns as well, so that you can write in something else. These pieces, along with the accordion-folded legs, add special 3D pizzazz.
Older students explain why, by writing on the back of the bird. Completed projects really turn out adorable and look sweet suspended from the ceiling.
Finally, "Great Times!" also includes a variety of writing prompt options. I’ve included 3 patterns for a Mother’s Day card, as well as templates for the end of the year: ”Time sure flies! I had a _____________ year in _____________!”
Plus there’s a “Fun in the Sun Summer Time“ pattern, where students can write about the fun times they are looking forward to doing during vacation, or use for back-to-school and have students write about a few of their favorite times that they enjoyed.
Besides the 3 “draw yourself” clock patterns for Mother’s Day, there are also 6 templates featuring 3 boys & 3 girls. Students simply color and cut.
Older kiddos “hinge” the writing prompt to the back with a piece of Scotch tape.
There are black & white patterns for students, plus full color templates of the children holding the clocks, so that you can quickly and easily make samples to share.
Today's featured FREEBIE is also versatile, as you can use it in February for Valentine's Day, as well as for grandparents, Mom or Dad on their special days.
I found this ABC "I Love You!" idea in various print forms on a variety of sites, so I'm not sure where the original idea came from.
However, instead of making an 8x10 print to frame, I thought it would be perfect to design some cards, bookmarks and magnets, which children could make in school for various holidays.
As for me, I tucked one in my husband's briefcase. Well that's it for today. Thanks for stopping by.
If you get a minute, zip on over to the site-wide "Teacher Appreciation" sale going on over at TpT.
My shop is participating. Enter the Promo Code: CELEBRATE for an additional 10% off at checkout.
"If you can read this, thank a teacher!"
1-2-3 Come Do Some Frog-Themed Craftivities With Me
Woo hoo for some of you lucky duckies who are now basking in the sunshine, enjoying the start of your vacation. For those of you who are still in school for a few more days, or even weeks, boy have I got a super-fun, frog-themed packet for you!
The versatility continues because it includes templates for Pre K4 through 3rd grade, so you can make things specific to your grade level!
Getting students to WANT to write and really enjoy it, is one of my hot buttons. With that in mind, I stuffed the packet with lots of creative writing prompt choices with an adorable frog theme that encompasses "leaping" into summer, a new grade, and a new year in school.
There are 18 writing prompt craftivities in all, with lots of options for both the end of the year, as well as for back-to-school. I enjoy drawing frogs; and had a fun time creating some real cuties. "Ferdinand" is a fat and sassy frog that's a "peek-over".
Run him off on lime green construction paper. Students trim and add colorful details with crayons, then glue him to the top of their "I'm leaping" writing prompt for the end of the year, or choose another topic and use the blank frog pattern, for back-to-school. I've included a "Look Who's Leaping" poster to use in the center of your bulletin board when you display your students' finished projects.
"Fred" is another fun-frog craft. Here the writing prompt is written on his "tongue". You can display Fred with a "flat tongue" or include some great fine-motor practice, and have students curl it, by rolling the paper strip on a crayon.
For that finishing touch, I've included some "flies". There's a "This stuff stuck. Look what I learned!" end-of-the-year pattern, as well as one that says: "I had a delicious summer.This is what I did..." for back-to-school.
Jose' can be done as a whole-group, class-made book, where everyone contributes a "belly page" or as an independent writing prompt, where each child makes their own booklet. The "Before We Go We'd Like You To Know" booklet gives advice to next year's kiddos.
The "Frogtastic Memories" can be turned into a quick, easy and fun end-of-the-year Memory Book, by simply having students write pages about the favorite things that they did in school or during the summer.
There are 5 to choose from, plus a blank one to program with whatever, and a sample for you to share to help explain to your students what you want them to do.
As with "Fred" this too can be done independently, or as a whole-group, class-made booklet. The back-to-school "I'm 'hoppy' to be me" writing prompt is a personal favorite.
I've also included a "We're flipping over leaping into a new grade!" poster that you can use for the center of your bulletin board display.
There's a poster for pre k4 through 3rd grade, plus a blank one to fill in with whatever.
If you've followed me, you know that I like to incorporate things with a play-on-words. It's a fun way to expand horizons and build vocabulary.
Students write about their "ribbiting" summer or "ribbiting" things that they enjoyed during the school year, inside "Rodney's" circular-frog belly.
There's a sampling of some of them in the photo. The "So long school, hello summer" or "So long summer, hello school" worksheets, where the froggy is opening a 3D school door to reveal the writing prompt are especially cute.
There's a similar writing prompt with a different frog, that may be more appealing for older students.
One bulletin board display that's especially adorable, is the frog on a lily pad. I made the water lily flower out of a coffee filter. In the top photo I simply scrunched the filter.
In the bottom picture I folded it into 1/8ths, then folded it one more time, snipping the end to create scallops. When you open it, it looks just like a large flat water lily.
I edged it with a pink watercolor marker, then spritzed it with water so it smudged into the paper. Easy-peasy with awesome results.
You have a nice teachable moment to discuss fractions, while children are following your step-by-step directions and folding their filter. The final writing prompt craftivity features "Fritz". This frog sits on a pail of sand.
I cut an oval out of sandpaper and glued it to the bucket, so that it looks filled! Children write things they'd like to do over the summer. The back-to-school writing prompt option tells what they've done during the summer and what they'd like to do in school.
I realize this "bucket list" idea is all over Pinterest, but I've been doing it way before TpT or Pinterest came into being. Click on the link for my original "Summer Bucket List" FREEBIE. It's in a FREE summer writing prompt packet with 6 other fun "craftivities".
Besides writing prompts, there are lots of end-of-the-year AND back-to-school themed "goodies" stuffed into the packet, with templates for Pre K4 through 3rd grade.
One group features another play-on-words using "toad-ally" for totally, which fits in perfect with my frog/toad theme.
I had fun designing a few writing prompts, as well as goodies using this fun word. There are color, as well as black & white covers for the mini-flip booklets and notes, as well as 2 posters and some labels.
"Brag Bracelets" are another "goodie". They are super-fun to make and wear. I designed one that says: "I'm Leaping!" and another with "Welcome!" on it.
Simply run off the pattern and trim using a paper cutter. Slit a toilet paper roll up the side and cut it into sections, the width of the pattern. Children glue to their "slap bracelet" folding the edges under. It's the perfect size for little ones, and the bent shape keeps it on their arm! When other kiddos ask them about their bracelet, they can "brag" that they made it and are "leaping" into a new grade. Nice little self-esteem builder!
If you're looking for a quick, easy and inexpensive little end-of-the-year, or back-to-school treat to give your students, take a look at my "tiny tags".
These are sweet little notes from the teacher, that you can attach to a "Flavor Ice" Popsicle (They sell them 50 to a pack for only $2.95!).
Putting them on a Fruit Roll Up (sticky frog tongue!) or attaching to a Snack Baggie is also fun. The Dollar Store sells a package of 12 gummi rainbow frogs that would also work.
I've also created a cute, keepsake-photo magnet. Laminate them for durability. The Dollar Store also sells magnet strip. (I'm a frequent shopper there; can ya tell?)
I've also included a variety of bookmarks suitable for the beginning, as well as the end of they year. They come in color, as well as black and white.
One is a writing prompt that students complete (nice bucket-filler activity), while another they color for one of your in-coming students.
My personal favorite is the keepsake photo bookmark, but the foreign language (Hello-Goodbye) ones are also really cute.
Another "goodie" in the packet are the "color-me" certificates for pre K4 through 3rd grade, (there are 4 styles to choose from, or give your kiddos a choice), plus there are 2 word-art frog-shaped posters that I created using Tagxedo.com. I've included my silhouettes, so that your kiddos can also make their own.
Well that about covers this frog-themed packet, which is a whopping 201 pages (!) and on sale now for just $6.95 (regularly $8.95). It took me a zillion hours to finish, but I think it was well worth the time. Click on the link to pop on over to my TpT shop and let the fun begin.
As always, I try to include a few FREEBIES from the packet as well. You can get the frog-word art posters, the word-art certificates (for pre-K4 through 3rd grade) stars and labels, plus the brag bracelets by clicking on the link: frog-themed end-of-the year mini packet.
To grab the FREE frog back-to-school banners, click on this link. The end pennants come in color as well as black line, and have templates for Pre K4 through 3rd grade. The frog-face pennants spell out "Welcome" and are in black and white, so that your kiddos can color them, taking ownership of helping to decorate their new home-away-from-home classroom.
This year's kiddos can make the banner to welcome your new students in the fall, or the new kids on the block can do it. Either way, it's kid-made and will look awww-dorable. Well that's it! Whew! That's a lot of frog stuff!
I apologize for such a long post. Thanks for hanging in there if you've read to the end. I'm just so excited to share my latest "mess-terpiece". You should see my office; it's a pile of craft supplies and samples...everywhere!
Thanks for visiting today. It's clean up time. Maybe I'll hum the "clean-up song" that my Y5's used to love singing. On second thought, the sun is shining and a warm breeze is beckoning to me to come play. I think I will. Wishing you a delightful day, crammed with creativity.
"For life to get easier, you have to get better." -Billy Cox
1-2-3 Come Stuff a Backpack With Me
Things really seem to fly after Memorial Day, as teachers everywhere are counting down the days to summer. However, some of us have those dreaded snow days to make up, and our districts don’t get out ’til the middle of June!
The packet is very versatile, as it can be used in a variety of ways for the beginning or end of the year, with activities geared towards the very young, as well as older elementary students too.
It’s loaded with plenty of options to choose from: writing prompts that act like a memory book; writing prompts that offer advice for next year’s students, or writing-prompt "clues" that are played as a game. Completed projects make sweet bulletin boards or hallway decorations too.
The Backpack Packet Includes:
An “Our Year Was Packed With Learning & Stuffed With Fun!” class-made book. This writing prompt comes in a full-page size, as well as two-on-a-page, with full-color cover pages for both.
It's a fun writing prompt for the end of the year. Collate and keep to share with your new students in the fall. I've included a completed sample.
The supply-filled backpack option says: ”There’s a whole lot of learning & fun packed into _________________.”
Children fill in their grade level and color the picture. The front flap flips up or over, to reveal the writing prompt. This younger-elementary choice, can be used like a memory book, where children write about their favorite activities, or they could also make this for your new students as well.
Another backpack writing prompt option is the "School was cool, this I know. I’m all packed up and ready to go. Summer’s here. Hi ho! Hi ho!”
It's a good choice for older students. There are 4 flaps to flip and write under, with a summer option, and a memory-book option: ”School is cool and packed with fun! Here’s a peek of what I’ve done” plus a next year student option. I've also included a blank flap template to fill in with whatever.
My personal favorite is the super-cute ”Kindergarten was packed with learning and stuffed with fun” writing prompt “craftivity”. It includes 7, front-panel options for kindergarten through 3rd grade, with a blank one to fill in with a different grade, plus one for summer.
Students add a cap, accordion-folded “legs” and shoes (there are 3-styles to choose from), so that this looks like the back of a child carrying a backpack. The flap flips up to reveal their writing prompt.
I designed this thinking of how adorable my young fives looked on their first day of school. They had brand new backpacks that were so large they made them look like little turtles. One nudge and I'm sure they'd tip over. This memory always made me smile.
”Backpack. Pack on your back. Help us guess what’s in your sack.” is a backpack guessing game that includes this chant on a poster, with another backpack "craftivity" option.
Students draw a picture under the bottom flap and write 3 clues under the top one, describing their hidden picture. They read one clue at a time, pausing for students to guess what they have in their sack for summer or for school.
Finally, there's a mini flip booklet ”There’s a lot of fun and learning packed into __________(grade).” Students write what they learned, enjoyed and a few of their favorite things on 6-page options. I've included covers in color, plus black & white.
These make a quick, easy & fun memory book, or have students contribute a page to make a class book to share with your new class in the fall.
As always, I've also included directions, tips, tricks, photographs and completed samples for each project.
This "Mini Memories" part of the packet is my featured FREEBIE for you! Click on the link to grab it.
If you'd like to see the entire Backpack Packet, click on the link to pop on over to my TpT store. This 48-page unit is on sale for just $3.95. I hope you enjoy it!
That’s it for today. Thanks for stopping by. Michigan has finally greened up and exploded with flowers. LOVE springtime when it eventually shows up!
Time to go outside and put the finishing touches on my flower garden.
Wishing you a wonderful end-of-the-year. I hope its packed with fun and stuffed with lots of special memories.
"You can't learn from your mistakes, if you keep denying them." -Unknown
1-2-3 Come Do Some Back To School Writing With Me
Here's a quick, easy and fun writing prompt for back to school. Completed projects look awesome dangling from the ceiling, swirling and twirling as they wave so long to summer, and hello to a brand new school year.
Even if you've already started back, summer's not technically over 'til the first day of fall (September 23rd) so you can easily incorporate this craftivity into your writing block, or Daily 5 activities.
Give students a variety of construction paper-color choices, to trace their hand and arm on. They trim and cut out. Run off the writing prompt rectangles. I've included templates for preschool through 8th grade.
Students color and complete the prompt, using words and phrases about things pertaining to their summer, as well as the new grade that they're in.
Younger students can do this with the help of their parents at Open House or Meet the Teacher Night. If you don't have one, tuck the activity in their backpacks for a nice home-school connection.
Students glue the summer prompt to the front of their hand, and the school one, to the back. For a bit more pizzazz, children can draw on polished fingernails and jewelry. (I used a flat-backed rhinestone to make a ring.)
Be sure and make a sample of your own to help explain what you want your students to do. This is also an interesting way for them to get to know you a little better.
I've included my writing samples, so that you can easily make an example if you don't have time to make one of your own.
After students share, punch a hole in a finger tip, add a yarn tie and suspend from the ceiling. Your caption could be "High Fives For Wonderful Writing."
I didn't dangle these samples from my ceiling, but you can get an idea from the photo, of how colorful and really cool your students' completed projects will look.
Click on the link to view/download the So Long Summer; Hello School Year Writing Prompt craftivity.
Thanks for visiting today. It's pouring outside my window, giving me a sleepy kind of feeling --the perfect day for doing all sorts of crafty things, or perhaps snuggling into a good book. Wishing you a relaxing day.
"Believe you can and you’re halfway there!" -Unknown
1-2-3 Come Do An Apple-icious Writing Activity With Me
Because many teachers decorate with an apple theme, and a lot of children study about apples in the fall, I decided to design a back to school apple icebreaker.
It's a quick, easy and fun way to get to know your new students. Be sure and make a sample to help explain what you want them to do, as well as an interesting way, for them to get to know you too.
Students complete the writing prompts and then color their apples in an ABC pattern.
I chose this pattern, because apples come in 3 colors, and I wanted to toss in a bit of science as well as math, plus it helps younger students to use more than only one color, which they are notorious for.
By having them cut their apple out, you provide an opportunity for practice, and can see at a glance who is having difficulty with fine motor skills.
If you take a first day of school photo, make copies and trim, so that students can glue one to their leaf, for that finishing touch.
Completed projects make a sweet bulletin board. (A new crop of kids, Kindergarten is a bushel of fun, The apple of Mr(s). ______'s eye, apple-icious work are just a few captions.
I've included 3 samples to give you some ideas of what children can share. An example will help jumpstart their minds and set them in the right direction.
There's also a blank apple for you to fill in with whatever information you'd like to learn about your students.
Click on the link to view/download the Apple Icebreaker Packet.
Thanks for visiting today. It's Friday and that means garage sales! (Woo hoo.)
I'm off in search of more treasures to fill up my already too-full basement! As a teacher, you can probably relate to suffering from the Pack Rat Syndrome.
"Develop a passion for learning. If you do, you will never cease to grow." -Anthony J. D'Angelo