Friday, February 27, 2009

Dr. Seuss Week

I thought that since next week is Dr. Seuss week, some ideas for the week might be fun to have. The nationwide reading celebration takes place each year on or near March 2, the birthday of Dr. Seuss. For my children's school, the activities they have planned for next week are: to decorate the classroom door, write a class book, crazy hat day, Pajama Day (wear PJ's while having a read-a-thon), crazy sock day (probably relating to The Foot Book or Fox in Socks), and dress up as your favorite Dr. Seuss character. At the school I use to work at, we also had crazy hair day, stripes day, and inside out day (where you wear your clothes either inside out or backwards or both). Another activity to do is to have a member of the PTA get on the intercom and read a sentence or two from one of Dr. Seuss' books. Each class would then write down the title of the book they thought the phrase was from and the winning class was awarded at the end of each day. Another REALLY FUN idea that was done one year was to host "Seuss Island". Our school came up with a fun assembly for the last day of Seuss week. Seuss Island was a combination of the TV show Survivor and Fear Factor. Several teachers and students were selected to participate and whoever could complete all the tasks in the shortest amount of time won. Some of the events were to eat "worms" (gummy worms or cooked spaghetti), "eyeballs" (peeled grapes), a ball toss, and a race. I can't remember all of the events, but get creative. With Dr. Seuss, the ideas are truly endless!

Lucky Charms Graph

I just came across a site with some fun ideas for the classroom for St. Patrick's Day. I especially like the idea of using Lucky Charms cereal to help with graphing. Check it out.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Lucky Leprechaun Hats

Celebrate St. Patrick's day with these decorative Shamrock Green clay pots to make with the kids!

I saw this cute idea to use as a St. Patrick's Day decoration on Good Things Utah. I think the kids would love it...especially the suckers!

Supplies Needed:

1 small terra cotta plant
green paint (spray or acrylic)
2 - 5 1/2 inch green cardstock circles
Green & White Suckers, covered with cellophane bags and tied with ribbon
20 inches of 2" black ribbon
1 slide mount sprayed with gold glitter paint
green styrofoam


1. Glue the 2 circles together, using the terra cotta pot trace a circle in the middle of the circles that are glued together and cut out.
2. Paint the terra cot pot green, glue the circles to the top, glue the black ribbon around the bottom of the pot, glue the slide mount to the black ribbon.
3. Inside the pot put a piece of styrofoam to hold the suckers.
4. Using as many suckers as desired, cover each with cellophane and wrap with green/white ribbon and stick into the styrofoam

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Lucky BINGO Cards

Check out these FREE, printable BINGO (or should I say "LUCKY") cards.

Leprechaun Hat

A fun table decoration that can be used to hold chips. We found our green tortilla chips at our local grocery store. You can use regular tortilla chips and then tint your dip with green food color. Whatever you do, have fun!

What you'll need:
1/2 gallon Round ice cream container, clean and dry (you do not need the lid)
2 or 3 sheets of Green construction paper
1 sheet of Yellow or Gray construction paper
1 sheet of Black construction paper
Double stick tape
Large circular object (however wide the construction paper is)

1. Trace around the large circular object on the green construction paper with the pen.
2. Cut out the circle.
3. Use the double stick tape to adhere the circle to the bottom of the ice cream container.
4. Cut a piece of green construction paper to fit around the container. You may need two pieces of construction paper or be able to piece them together.
5. Use the double stick tape to adhere the construction paper around the container.
6. Cut a strip about 2" wide out of the black construction paper.
7. Cut a 4" square out of the gray or yellow construction paper.
8. Cut a rectangle in the middle of the gray construction paper about 1 1/4" x 2". Discard the little piece of construction paper. Hint: Fold the square into fourths and cut a square out of the middle of the folded area. Open up the square.
9. Check positioning of the black band by laying it around the hat about an inch above the brim. Cut off any excess construction paper where it meets in the back.
10. Lay the gray or yellow (buckle) over the black band as shown in the photograph. Once the layout is satisfactory, tape in place.
11. Add green tortilla chips, if available, and get ready for your feast.

*I was thinking that with this cute idea, you could also use the hat as a game. By gold covered chocolate coins and mark a line on the floor where the kids should stand. Have them try to toss the gold coins into the hat.

Valentine Activities Galore

Here is a website with TONS of Valentine ideas, games, printables, mini books, activities...etc. This site would be great for teachers and parents alike!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Valentine Centerpiece

OK, OK I know...Valentine's is over and this is my 4th post of the day...YIKES! BUT...I just found this great new website and darling idea for a teacher gift. Looks like I know what I will be giving next year. Look here for a variation in the idea or here for the step-by-step instructions.

Crayon Shaving Hearts

Check out how cute these are! I found the idea on Skip to My Lou. I thought it might be a fun craft to try, especially during the long winter months when you are trapped inside!! Happy crafting!

Math Help

If you have a child (or know one) that could you a little extra push in their math skills, there is a website that can help. The greatest thing is that it is FREE and does all the thinking for you. You've got to love that right? All you need to do is click on the area that your child could use help with and a printable worksheet appears. LOVE IT! My kids have been working on their multiplication, but there is help with fractions, money, adding/subtracting, powers of ten and even special holiday math worksheets. (You make math seem fun!) Check it out...

Make Your Own Valentine Cards

If you and your family are on a budget or you have a child who likes to create, why not make your own Valentine cards? You can use ideas from below to have a clever phrase (this works best for the older kids). If you have a younger child, there are websites where you can print off pre-made Valentine cards. For example, I just found Go, Diego, Go! cards on the Nick Jr. website. Remember though, sometimes the ink that you use to print something off is equal to the price or more than the price of what you can find in the store!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Conversation Heart Relay

Divide the kids into two teams. Race one kid against another from the teams, carrying a conversation heart on a spoon. Carry from one side of the room to the other and have the students place the hearts in a bowl. See which team can fill their bowl first or reach a preset number of items in their bowl.

* This game could be adapted to fit any holiday. (Halloween - candy corn, Easter - egg, OR M&M's or seasonal candy could work for any of them!)

Candy Count/Estimation Jars

Fill a jar (or several) with candy or items relating to that holiday. For example, if it's Halloween you can fill a jar with spider rings or Valentine's with heart erasers or heart shaped candy, etc. Let each student guess how many items are in the jar. The student with the closest guest wins the jar! If you are using this game in a classroom with younger children, it makes a terrific counting game also. Gather the children and let them help separate the candy into piles of 10. Have the entire group count the piles by 10s – educational and yummy!

As a side note, my son's 2nd grade teacher had a sign-up sheet at the start of the school year for parents to take part in this monthly activity. At the start of each month, the teacher sent home the designated estimation jar to fill. The students looked forward to having the estimation jar filled each month and being able to take part in this fun activity.

Musical Hearts

Tape large numbered hearts to the floor, one for each child. Every child begins by standing on a heart. Start the music and have the children walk around the room. When the music stops draw a number from a bag to see which numbered heart is out. Remove the heart from the floor once it has been drawn out. This is a little better than musical hearts (chairs) because you won’t have kids racing for a spot. They also won’t know who will be out so it keeps the suspense a little.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Valentine Card Box

On Monday, my daughter came home from school (4th grade) and told me that she had to come up with a Valentine Card Box and that they were going to judge them and have a contest at her class party. I decided to try my trusty resource guide...the Internet, but I was hardly able to come up with anything, so instead we brainstormed. Here is a list of ideas we came up with in case you are struggling too. A locker, a candy bar, a lion, a TV, a car, a purse made from a 5 quart icecream bucket, and a hot air balloon (which was the runner up)-(tie a helium filled balloon to each side of a basket or shoebox or icecream bucket). Ultimately, both kids decided on an I-pod, which made things easy for me. Here are the results:

In the past I have made, a bug catching net (my son loves animals):

My daughter and I also made a fishbowl when she was in Kindergarten. It was super easy and she had fun being able to take part. I bought one of those paper mache containers from Roberts Crafts and painted blue squiggly lines for the water. We added more to it by painting a top coat of glitter paint on top of the blue paint. Then my daughter attached fish foam stickers and little diamond gems for bubbles.

Valentine Phrases

If you are needing some cute phrases for friends, teachers, neighbors, church, etc., here are some ideas I have come across. (Some of these ideas were featured on the show Studio 5. My kids chose to use the gum and squeeze it one for their class parties this year.
* Pop Rocks: Valentine, you ROCK!
* You Rule! - Attach to a ruler or Fruit By The Foot
* Gum: We "chews" you to be our Valentine!
* Gummy Bears/Teddy Grahams, etc: "Bag of bear hugs", "You're unbearably cute!", "Join the cub!", "I can't bear being without you!"
* Squeeze-it kids drink: Valentine, Will you be my SQUEEZE?
* Put a can of FANTA soda in a cellophane bag with some taffy and chocolate: "Make my FANTA-sy come true … Be my Valentine!"
* Swedish fish: "It's O-FISH-al! I'm in love! Will you be mine" or "You're O-FISH-ally the best kid around … Happy Valentine's Day" or "FISHing a Happy Valentine's to the best CATCH around!"
* Soda: "You are SODA special! Happy Valentine's Day!"
* Wrap a can of Pringles to look like a stick of dynamite: "I think you are DYNAMITE! TNT!"
* Tie a tag to a bottle of root beer: "Go ahead, kick up those heels! Have a ROOTIN'-TOOTIN BOOT-SCOOTIN Valentine's Day!"
* Tied to a purse: "Happy Valentine's Day to someone with a cute PURSE-onality! Luv ya!"
* A bottle filled with candy: "My love for you has been BOTTLED up for too long … so here it is! I love you!"
* Tied to a can of Crush soda: "I've got a CRUSH on you!"

I decided to make something for the kids' teachers. Here is what we came up with:

Instead of the phrase, To a pop!-pop!-pop!-ular teacher you could use:I don't mean to be corny, but you're the greatest! OR I'm e-kernel-ly yours. I got the idea from ...where they have plenty more great ideas! (Click here for the template)