Saturday, March 08, 2014

St. Patty's Centers & Activities: Week 1

Top 'o the mornin' to ya all! We began our Irish celebrations early this year with lots of fun at St. Patty's literacy centers.

At our Write the Room center, the kiddies reviewed colour words by searching around the room for shamrock cards (see under this little firsties' arm):
(This activity is available HERE)

They used the letter boxes on the worksheet to correctly write the colour of each shamrock they found. If they needed a little reminder of how to spell some colour words correctly, they could look at our classroom word wall or their double-sided Literacy Reference Posters that we keep in our Literacy Center work folders.

At Word Work 1, we began learning about antonyms with this fun Pot 'o Gold antonym matching activity:

At Word Work 2, the kiddies put together CVC word puzzles
and recorded their letter sounds on the worksheet:

At the Reading Center, the kids got to practice reading the shared reading poem that we read and sang (to the tune of "I'm a Little Teapot") throughout the week:
It was so great seeing them taking turns reading different lines and playing "I Spy" by hunting for words.

The kids totally surprised me by how nuts they went for this "mad lib style" activity that allowed them to change the words of our shared reading poem and create their own silly poem. It was too funny hearing them giggle as they read their concoctions to each other (sorry for the picture quality, I really need to stop taking pictures with my phone!):
("I'm a farty leprechaun, soft and hairy...")

Finally, at Pocket Chart center, the kids used a word bank poster (no pictured) to select and spell sight words by finding the correct letters and arranging them correctly like a puzzle. Once they built a word, they recorded it on their blank worksheet:
(Sight word puzzle activity found HERE)

At the end of the week, we thought about all the things that make us feel as lucky as a leprechaun! We drew a picture of one thing that makes us feel lucky and made these adorable chains:
It was a great way to show our knowledge of the colours of the rainbow (cue: ROY-G-BIV!) and talk about the different traditions and stories behind the holiday...such as the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow as depicted by this craft!

And with that, my March Break begins! 

Sunday, March 02, 2014

2014 Winter Olympics and Compound Words

Is it spring yet?! We have been stuck in what the news is calling a "polar vortex" (not kidding) for WAY too long. I am jealous of all my southern-state friends who are enjoying morning tea outside on their porches right now! 

But, although we're facing arctic conditions up here in the north, it really does set the stage for a celebration of the WINTER Olympics with my firsties!
Since we had two "snow days" last week (I put that in sarcastic quotes since one of the downsides of living in a northern town is that huge dumpings of snow, ice storms, and other insane winter weather is apparently no biggie so school is always open, busses just get cancelled) I ended up having 12 of 22 kids (grrr! haha), where some classrooms had as little as 2 kids. The upside to all this is that our awesome principal let us watch the gold medal hockey game as a school in the gym. GO CANADA GO!

To show our team spirit, my kiddies whipped up a couple festive crafts:
This is a great go-to activity for pretty much any occassion. All you do is cut out the shape you want, colour around the edges of the shape (in this case a circle) with pastels, and hold the shape against your paper as you smudge the pastels outward onto the background paper with your finger. Smear the pastel all the way around the cut shape and then when you remove it, you get a silhouetted "glowing" effect on your background paper. Let me tell you, my kids were all over this craft! 

Afterwards, we marched down to the gym to watch Canada beat US in our nation's game with our home-made Olympic torches:

And in no way related to the Olympics, earlier we learned about compound words and started this anchor chart:
We added to it throughout the week and it now hangs with our other poems and whole-class charts in our reading centre:

Stay warm, friends!
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