Tuesday, November 19, 2013

A Simple Measurement Tool

Yarn as a measuring tool?
Yes, we used yarn to measure our height at birth vs our current height. Each child was given a mock birth announcement to complete with their parents. The next day the kiddos were so excited to share their birth information with the class!! 
 We than used a measuring tape to measure and cut pieces of yarn to fit their birth height. Each child was able to stand to see how much they had grown from birth, their expressions were priceless.  It was thrilling to see students measuring each other with their strands of yarn. We than gathered the yarn and birth announcements to make a really cool display for the rest of the school to enjoy. Vocabulary for this activity: compare, longer, taller, shorter, measure, length
  • CCSS.Math.Content.K.MD.A.1 Describe measurable attributes of objects, such as length or weight. Describe several measurable attributes of a single object.
  • Goal CD-11 :Use descriptive language for size, length, or weight (short, tall, long, heavy, big).

Thursday, November 14, 2013


I created a new free fall download in my TPT store (Pumpkin Pumpkin What Do You See), please stop by and grab it for your class.  It's a unique spin on the classic Brown Bear Brown Bear, hope your class enjoys it as much as ours did. Color words and predictability make for a great story, just print and let your kiddos do the rest.


Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Pumpkins, Pumpkins, Everywhere

Just finished up one of greatest pumpkin mini units ever! The children were engaged and picked up lots of new vocabulary. In past years we started our pumpkin unit BEFORE our visit to the pumpkin patch. This year we did the pumpkin unit AFTER going to the pumpkin patch. Reversing the order of things this year served two purposes 1- the field trip assisted with giving the children "prior" knowledge 2- hands on experience was valuable during discussion times...
hayride to the pumpkin patch

everyone was able to pick a pumpkin, there were green pumpkins, pumpkins attached to vines, and pumpkin flowers,  (yes!)
Some of the activities which were included in our unit are below:

painting with pumpkins

painting on pumpkins
pumpkin patch in housekeeping
pumpkins in the water table
pumpkins in science

pumpkins in sand

pumpkins for snack

group project
Finished product
Great Fun!!

Monday, September 30, 2013

Button Sort

When children sort/classify they are working on several different skills:
                                                           observation skills
                                                           descriptive words
                                                           logical/analytical thinking
                                                           relationship between objects

We introduced sorting by providing the children with a container of buttons and the bottom half of a nuts and bolts container (can be found at any hardware store).

We introduced the material and discussed (as a whole group), some of the physical characteristics of the buttons (size, color, texture, buttons with holes, without holes, shiny, dull). Our main objective was to introduce vocabulary. During work centers we observed children creating all kinds of cool sorting groups.
    It's always neat to see children making connections without a lot of teacher direction. Sometimes it's good to put out open ended materials and allow children time to explore.                                          

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Classroom rules class book

Almost one month into the school year and we are still going our the classroom rules daily. (REPEAT, REPEAT, REPEAT) lol!

My kiddos are doing a great job with learning and following them. We made a classroom book of our rules, it was neat to see their interpretation of them.

Teacher made book cover
age 5 

Age 4

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Social Story

Social stories are very helpful when teaching social kills, classroom rules, and other desired behaviors. Lately I have observed my pre-kinders saying "I'm not going to be your friend" if one of their classmates isn't doing something they want them to do, needless to say the child to whom this phrase is spoken usually ends up in tears.  I consider this to be bulling and a form of manipulation. In an attempt to keep a safe classroom (emotional and physical). I decided to create a social story about using kind and unkind words. The kiddos loved it and because I added pictures they are able to refer back to the "story" when necessary.  
Using kind words
Sorry my hand writing can be a bit messy but mission accomplished! 
Shonda Mc-Alston

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

 Copied this from Lessons with Coffee Facebook fan page!! So excited to have my slant box match!! more to come..

Bulletin Boards

I found two adorable bulletin board ideas on Pinerest and I attempted to recreate them...
 the original idea can be found here

 (all of our centers are bare at the beginning of each school year because we demonstrate to our new prekinders how to properly take care of the materials)
This bulletin board is hanging up in our library area

We use our third bulletin board to display student art work.
And as you can see we have a lot of white wall space to spruce up!
Until next time

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

First day of Staggerd Entry tomorrow!!

YAY!!I 'm ready to start a new school year with 16 beautiful new children; home visits are done (check), parent orientation is complete (check), but I am sitting up laminating our center signs and name cards for tomorrow.....a teacher's job is never done ! Got to love it!!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Alphabet Fun

As I think about the start of school I immediately think about creative and fun ways to introduce letters (ALPHABET) to my new Pre K kiddo's  I ran across this neat crocodile alphabet game at Growing In Kinders which I wanted to share.  The idea originated from Making Learning Fun, which is another great resource.
Who doesn't like a cute crock?!!

Grab this great game from Growing Kinders TPT store  by clicking the image below   

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Back To School Exclusive Give Away Almost Over!

The Teaching Tribune is having a great give away! Only a couple of hours left!! Hop on over! 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Sea Shell necklace Craft

Since I have gone on two trips to the beach this summer,thus far (maybe a 3rd one before it's over) I came across this really creative way to use all the seashells we collected. I am going do this with my kiddo's during our Wind and Water unit. Found this necklace activity on  http://www.education.com/activity/article/seashell-necklace/  enjoy!

pictures of my 4 yr old son and my 5 yr old niece on our recent beach excursion .....

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Blogin! And just when I'd figured out blogspot

<a href="http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/6595895/?claim=ffdxjq4jzsb">Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

Monday, June 24, 2013


I've made the transition to BLOGLOVIN' let's see what happens!! Please follow me there! tootles

Friday, June 14, 2013


A big THANK YOU and lots of HUGS to Erin at Creating & Designing blog spot! She is a fantastic designer and very patient! I still consider myself a blog newbie and Erin made the experience of re-vamping my blog effortless!!! Go and check her out!!

Friday, June 7, 2013

Class of 2013

So school is officially over today! It's always bitter sweet to see my preKinders go, but I know they are prepared to transition into some lucky Kindergarten teacher's class! 💋Blowing kisses to all of them !   

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Pet Store

The best thing about Pre K is the Dramatic Play area. Dramatic play is beneficial on many different levels; social interaction, deciphering fiction from reality, role play, language development, and the use of symbols ( to name a few).
What do you find in a pet store? Fish aquariums, cat/ dog kennels and supplies, and birds among other things.
So, my son and I set to work making an aquarium using foam fish cut outs, sponge pieces and a hot glue gun. We also made a bird cage using a shoe box. My son is the best assistant teacher ever! Pictures of the end resort

Friday, May 3, 2013

Busy, Busy, Busy

We have really been busy in Pre K! Spring is always a great time of year, the kids are blossoming into little readers and writers. Today was the last day of our animal mini unit, coming soon are pictures from our Lazy 5 Field trip (Petting Zoo) and our "underwater" scene project. Enjoy!!