Monday, May 29, 2017

A DAY TO REMEMBER

For most of you Memorial Day means that summer is here and it’s time to get out those white shoes, the sprinkler, and the grill. However, I think it’s important to take a minute today and think about the real meaning of this holiday.

Memorial Day was originally called Decoration Day because people decorated the gravesites of those who died during the Civil War. After World War I, it was extended to include all the women and men who died during military service.

The poppy has become a symbol of Memorial Day due to Moina Michael’s Poem “In Flanders Fields” (1915).
     We cherish too, the Poppy red

     That grows on fields where valor led,

     It seems to signal to the skies
     That blood of heroes never dies.

Attending parades, visiting military gravesites, or decorating with flags are traditional ways to remember those who died serving our country.

Check out this website to learn more about Memorial Day:
http://www.va.gov/opa/speceven/memday/
                                 
Whoever you are…wherever you are…take a few minutes today to PLAY! Do something that makes you happy! Do something that makes you glad to be alive! And, please, take a few minutes today to remember all the brave men and women who died serving the United States Military so that we could be free and happy today!!!




Sunday, May 28, 2017

TAKE ME OUT TO THE BALL GAME

It's Memorial Day weekend and time to head out to the ball park.

Take Me Out to the Ball Game
Take me out to the ball game. (Hand in fist as if cheering.)
Take me out to the crowd.
Buy me some peanuts (Hold up one palm and then other.)
and Cracker Jacks.
I don’t care if we never get back, (Shake head “no.”)
For I’ll root, root, root for the home team. (Cheer with hand in the air.)
If they don’t win it’s a shame. (Open up palms and shake head.)
For it’s one, two, three strikes (Hold up fingers as you count and
You’re out! then stick up thumb like “out.”)
At the old ball game.
http://www.drjean.org/html/monthly_act/act_2014/05_May_css/index.html


Cracker Jacks Book 

Cut the front and back off a bag or box of Cracker Jacks. Cut paper the size of the bag and give each child a piece. Let them draw and write what prize they would like to find in a box of Cracker Jacks.    
                                              

Skill Baseball
Take four paper plates and write "Home," "First," "Second," and "Third" on them. Arrange them in a diamond shape on the floor.  Cut 4" circles out of heavy paper to make flash cards for this game.  You can write words, math facts, letters, or any skill you want to reinforce.  Write "home run" and "out" on a few.  Divide the class into two teams. One child at a time comes up to home plate as the teacher pitches (holds up) a flash card. If the child can identify the information she moves on to first. If she doesn't know the answer that's an "out" for her team.

*You might want to have a 5 run limit per inning or the game could go on and on.


Piggy Peanut Relay 

Children take off their shoes and one member from each team at a time picks up a peanut in their toes and walks to a designated spot and back. They can't use their hands, but it's fun to watch them try to manipulate the peanut with their piggies.
(If children have peanut allergies, you might be able to use another small object such as a counting bear.)

Root? 

Use this "teachable moment" to talk about the different meanings of the word "root." Can children think of synonyms for "root"?
Sports Day
Invite children to wear T-shirts of their favorite team to school one Friday. Those who play baseball, soccer, or another sport could wear their uniforms. Children could also bring balls and sports equipment for a special play time.

Hint! Make visors of your favorite baseball team from paper plates.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

CAMP SONGS AND SING ALONGS

 
Can you imagine sitting around a campfire and singing? Talk about a vanishing activity! No CD…no big screen…no musical instruments…just an engaging song and friends! My daughter and I were reminiscing that nobody sings like that any more.  If you ever sang around a campfire as a child, it's a happy memory you will never forget.

The great thing about children is that you can still give them that special memory in your classroom or out on the playground.  One day we built a fake campfire out of sticks.  (I would have had the fire marshall after me if we built a real fire.)  The kids found sticks, stuck marshmallows on the end, and pretended to roast them in the fire.  It was hysterical, because they were totally into the experience.  We then sang some of our favorite songs.
                                         
Little Cabin in the Woods
Little cabin in the woods.
(Make a square in the air with index fingers.)
Little man by the window stood.
(Hand over eyes.)
Saw a rabbit hopping by
(Two fingers up like ears and hop hand.)
Knocking at my door.
(Knock in the air.)
“Help me! Help me! Help me, please.
(Throw hands up in the air.)
For it’s cold and I might freeze.”
(Wrap arms around self and shake.)
Little rabbit come inside
(Motion “come.”)
Safely you’ll abide.
(Stick up 2 fingers on one hand and stroke with other hand.)
 
Swimming
(Tune: “Sailing, Sailing, Over the Bounding Main” - Happy Everything CD)
Swimming, swimming, (Pretend to stroke arms.)
In the swimming pool. (Take index fingers and make a square in the air.)
When days are hot (Pretend to fan self.)
Or days are cold, (Rap arms around your self and shiver.)
in the swimming pool. (Make a square in the air.)
Back stroke, (Stroke arms backwards.)
Side stroke, (Swim to the side.)
Fancy diving, too. (Palms together and pretend to dive.)
There’s no place (Shake head “no.”)
I would rather be
Than in the swimming pool. (Make a square in the air.)

*The second time through hum the first line as you make the motions.
Third time hum the first two lines and make the motions.
With each verse omit the words and hum as you make the motions until you are just humming the song.


Here are some other favorite campfire songs:
Found a Peanut
Coming Round the Mountain
Baby Fish
The Wheels on the Bus
Chica Boom Chica Boom
Yogi Bear





Friday, May 26, 2017

CAMP END-OF-YEAR

I was looking through old blogs and I found this idea that a teacher in Indiana shared several years ago. I wish I'd found it earlier because I know for many of you it's too late to do this, but just tuck it away for next year it's such a fun idea.

Camp Kindergarten (Michelle Page)
We do camp kindergarten the last two weeks in the school year. Every morning we meet at the flagpole for the pledge and camp songs.
*“Baby Shark,” “The Ants Go Marching,” “Banana Dance,” “Chicka Boom,” and “Calamine Lotion” are a few songs we sing.

The parents write letters for “mail call” and the children write back.
                                

We take an ABC nature walk and try to find objects for each letter in the alphabet.
                   
We make s’mores and trail mix for snack.
                                                                             
The children bring blankets, towels, and sleeping bags. They get to take off their shoes to read, do work, listen to a story.

We go fishing for words (plastic pool and words with magnets).

We go on a bear hunt and then draw pictures of our adventure.

To tie in science we study about bugs and worms.


What an amazing way to celebrate and end the school year!

Look at our camp t-shirts with the kids’ names on the back.
       

Thursday, May 25, 2017

MONKEYING AROUND WITH MONKEYS

We love our little monkeys in our classrooms, don’t we?

Caps for Sale
This was always one of my favorite books to read to my class. It was such fun to let the children be the monkeys and act out the tale. We did this in the classroom as well as outside on the playground equipment.

Monkey on a Swing
Cut a sheet of paper as shown. Roll down the top section and staple to make the monkey’s head. Decorate with markers or crayons. Glue on a tail. Staple the monkey’s hands to a straw and watch him swing.
               
                                                          

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B1SnEagA4jljN2VCWmU2VkxGOWc/view?usp=sharing

Compare and Contrast
Get several copies of Curious George books. Compare and contrast George’s adventures. How are they alike? How are they different? Could those adventures really happen?
          
Five Little Monkeys
Five little monkeys jumping on the bed. (Hold up five fingers.)
One fell off and bumped her head. (Touch your head.)
Momma called the doctor and the doctor said, (Pretend to hold a phone.)
“That’s what you get for jumping on the bed!” (Point finger.)
Four…three..two…one…
No little monkeys jumping on the bed.
They are sick with broken heads!

*Change the number of monkeys in the song. Children will also get a kick out of saying, "Five little mommies jumping on the bed..."

Monkeys and Alligator  (Dr. Jean & Friends CD)
Five little monkeys swinging from a tree, (Hold up five fingers.)
Teasing Mr. Alligator, “Can’t catch me.”
Along came Mr. Alligator quiet as can be,
And snatched a monkey right out of that tree!
Four little monkeys… (Hold up appropriate number of
Three…two…one… fingers on hand.)
“Missed me, missed me. (Stick thumbs in ears and tease.)
Now you gotta kiss me!”

*Choose five children to be monkeys and one child to be the alligator to act out this song.

Monkey Tail Sandwich
You will need:
     Hot dog buns
     Bananas
     Peanut butter (or substitute)
1.  Wash your hands.
2.  Spread peanut butter in the bun.
3.  Peel the banana and insert it in the bun.
4.  Yum! Yum!


Wednesday, May 24, 2017

ELEPHANT PUPPETS

Elephants are amazing creatures. I read a book called ELEPHANT BILL about how elephants were used in Burma in WWII - absolutely fascinating! I never knew that elephants have feelings and protect each other's children just like humans.

Here's a silly elephant puppet that my children always enjoyed making. There's nothing like putting a puppet on your hand to tell a story or sing a song.
                                             
Materials: old socks, paper plates, crayons, brad fasteners, gray construction paper.
Hint! Ask each child to bring in an old sock. This shouldn't be too difficult because everyone has a lost sock or two.

Directions:  Cut 2 ears out of the gray construction paper. Cut a circle large enough for the child’s hand out of the middle of the paper plate. (Color the plate gray if you desire.) Draw a face on the plate as shown. Attach the 2 ears to the sides of the plate with brad fasteners. Insert the hand in the sock and then stick the sock through the back of the plate to create the elephant’s nose.
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B1SnEagA4jlja2xZQmxOVUtCYjg/view?usp=sharing

What a Nose!
(Tune: "I'm a Little Teapot" - Dr. Jean & Friends CD)
Elephants walk like this and that. (Stick out one arm like a trunk and stomp
from side to side.)
They’re terribly big and terribly fat. (Arms out wide.)
They have no hands. (Hold up hands and shake head no.)
They have no toes. (Point to feet and shake head no.)
But, goodness, gracious, what a nose! (Stick out arm like a trunk.)

One Elephant Went out to Play
One elephant went out to play - (Hold up one finger.)
Out on a spider's web one day. (Roll hands around.)
She had such enormous fun. (Stick arms out wide.)
She called for another elephant to come. (Cup arms by mouth.)
Two elephants went out to play.... (Hold up two fingers.)

*Let children act out this rhyme. The first child chooses the second child. The second child chooses the third child, etc.
*What does "enormous" mean? What are other things that are enormous?
*Could an elephant really play on a spider's web? Why not?
                           
CD Puppet
You can also make an elephant puppet from an old CD. Draw a face on the CD with permanent markers. Tape on construction paper ears and let the children insert their index finger in the hole to make a trunk. (Obviously, my big finger was too large for the hole!)

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

ANIMAL CRACKERS

Some things like animal crackers never go out of style!

Animal Crackers
By Dr. Holly
Lions, and tigers, and bears, oh, my!
In my box that’s what I spy.
Take them out.
Should I run?
No, I’ll eat them!
Yum! Yum! Yum!

Descriptions
Pass out an animal cracker to each child. Encourage them to write descriptive sentences about their cracker. I see… I smell… I feel… I hear… I taste!
                                         
Tag Along Book
Cut the front and back off a box of animal crackers. (Be sure and leave the string attached.) Cut paper the size of the box. Give each child a sheet and ask them to draw a zoo animal or write a description of a zoo animal. Put their pictures between the front and back of the box and staple to make a book.
Hint! This is called a tag along book because they can hold it and it will tag along with them!

Math
Use zoo animal plates for simple addition. Children make sets in each ear and then join them together and count the sum. You can use math counters, buttons, popcorn, or cereal.
                              
Vocabulary
What does it mean to be a carnivore? Herbivore? Omnivore? What are you? Do some research to find out eating habits of different zoo animals.

Sorting
Use animal crackers, toy animals, or pictures to sort zoo animals. Ask children what sorting rule they used. Can they think of another way to sort the animals?

Put Me in the Zoo
Do a language experience chart where children fill in the sentence:
If I were in the zoo I would be…
Let them draw pictures of which animal they would like to be. Why did they choose that animal?

Zoo Treats
                                   
You will need graham crackers, animal crackers, and peanut butter to make this snack. Children put a small amount of peanut butter on the graham cracker and stand animal cookies up on it.
*You can using icing or honey for children with peanut allergies.