Tuesday, January 24, 2012


This week we are focusing on walruses! Do you know much about these creatures? Well, we didn't and we have been finding out all kinds of cool stuff about them. Like - did you know that walruses use their tusks to help pull themselves up out of the water? That's pretty cool and I love how God created each animal uniquely and gave them things that they would need to help them survive in the wild.

We started the week off pretty much the same way with me asking the girls what they already know about walruses. They were able to come up with 4 facts which I recorded and placed in our pocket chart. We read some information on them from a book we picked up from the library and wrote down the new information we learned and added those facts to our chart. Then we got on the national geographic kids website and read more facts and watched a short clip about walruses and then wrote down even more facts!

I think I came up with this idea for the walrus craft. I did see something similiar on a website, but I tweaked it a little and came up with the idea to make him or her into a paper bag puppet. I had the girls write and draw 3 facts that they have learned so far about walruses on this journaling sheet from Mrs. Jump.

They ended our walrus learning by labeling a walrus. I found the image on google and created this sheet in Word, but was totally inspired by Jennifer at First Grade Blue Skies and Mrs. Jump! Jennifer, by the way, makes the cutest label it sheets EVER! Go check them out here :)

Friday, January 20, 2012

paper plate polar bears

Today we learned a few more facts about polar bears and added those facts to our pocket chart. Then I had the girls write and draw 3 facts that they have learned so far. I found anohter cute polar bear craft from here and had them make him! Isn't he cute?

Thursday, January 19, 2012

polar bear, polar bear

This week we are talking about arctic animals! I bought this amazing pack from Teacher Bits and Bobs' TpT store. Seriously, these packs are great - I love that I can still plan in themes and reinforce things that we are learning this year AND that they are so adorable! (picture taken from teacher bits and bobs blog)

We went to the library yesterday and checked out some non-fiction and fiction books about arctic animals ~ especially polar bears. Before reading a book about polar bears, I asked the girls what they already knew about them. I wrote their answers on index cards in blue. Then, I read them a book about polar bears. After reading the book, I asked the girls if they learned anything new and recorded their answers on index cards in pink. (don't judge the color of my wall ~ it's a major oops color!)

And of course, I had to follow this activity with a craftivity! I found this adorable polar bear craftivity on Pinterest ~ have I mentioned before how much I *love* pinterest :) You can ckeck out the teaching blog that originally posted about these polar bears here. I found the emergent reader at making learning fun.I have another polar bear craftivity that I plan to share, so be sure to check back tomorrow!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

playful penguins

Last week we learned about penguins! It was a lot of fun and the girls really loved the penguin craftivity that we did! I think they were more impressed with my collection of scrapbook papers that I have stashed away! We started the week off by doing a KWL chart - Know, Want to know and Learned. They actually knew more than I thought they did about penguins. Ethan was even able to tell me a fact or two about penguins, too!

We organized all of the facts that they knew on a chart that looked like this -
We did it all together and I modeled how to fill out the chart on our dry erase board. Then I gave them a copy for them to fill out. These graphic organizers came from Fun in First. They used these charts throughout the week as a reference for other things. We worked on words that begin and end with sh, ch and th (digraphs) that I got from The First Grade Parade.
We reviewed what verbs are and I had the girls make a flip chart of verbs that penguins can do.
I had the girls write 6 facts about penguins to go along with the *cute* penguins that they made!
We went to the library and checked out a bunch of non-fiction books about penguins that we read throughout the week. They also labeled a penguin that I got from First Grade Blue Skies.

***Check out our lapbook that we made a couple of years ago about penguins.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

snowman poem

I thought it would be a good idea to add in poetry to our literature genres and when I saw this on Mrs. Jump's blog that she was sharing for free as a homework assignment, I quickly recreated it so I could use it with the girls. The girls had to read the poem and then illustrate the beginning, middle and end in the boxes.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

snowflake similes

It had been a while since we talked about similes so I made this sheet for the girls to write some similes about snowflakes. After they wrote their similes, they water colored the snowflake.

"The snow is as cold as ice cream. Snowflakes fall as softly as rain and as quietly as a leaf."

Thursday, January 5, 2012

snowflake craftivity

We made these cute snowflakes after I saw them on What the Teacher Wants. We talked about how every snowflake has 6 sides. After they made the snowflakes, I had them copy the poem onto handwriting paper.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

winter bliss

Hiya! Remember me? Despite my lack of posting, I am still here and homeschooling the girls! Let's see if I can give you a speedy update - we celebrated Thanksgiving with our families, moved back to Georgia, celebrated Christmas and Gracelyn's 7th birthday. Whew! It has been non-stop, but we are so glad to be back home near our families and friends!

Since things were crazy, I decided to buy a couple more packs from TpT to use during the holidays. This is what we used during the month of December -

teacher bits and bobs

doodle bugs teachings

We also made an elf out of cardstock and I had the girls fill out an elf application that I got from The First Grade Parade ~ she is so clever! We made a santa with a torn beard and wrote a letter to santa that I got from Teacher Bits and Bobs.

This is what we are using for January -

teacher bits and bobs

I couldn't wait to share these adorable puffy snowmen we made out of shaving cream and school glue. It was so easy and they really do dry puffy! If you are interested in doing these snowmen, just mix equal parts of school glue and shaving cream together. I had the kids draw their snowman with a pencil on the blue paper first and then fill in the body with the mixture. We used orange cardstock for the noses and black cardstock for the hats, eyes, and buttons. (I used my hole punch to punch the eyes and buttons.) The arms are toothpicks and the scarves are ribbons. Everything will dry onto the snowman so there isn't any need for glue.

I'll be posting more frequently now that we are somewhat settled and in a routine again! I have lots more winter-y activities to share with you guys!