Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Elf Shenanigans & Christmas Crafts!

It’s not too late to post about all of the fun that went on the last week of school before break yet, right?! Yeah, I didn’t think so! I took so many pictures and wanted to share them all, but there was ZERO motivation when the break actually began! Are you with me?! So, first off I wanted to share our elf shenanigans. This was the first year I brought the “Elf on the Shelf” idea into the classroom. It was a fairly last minute decision, so I don’t feel like I truly did it justice, but it was a fine attempt! Haha! Hey, the kids came in every morning excited to see where our elf, Snowflake, was at and they loved it...sooo I guess that’s a win in their book! :)

Some of these I shared on Instagram, but here are most of the things our little elf did this year in room 106! 

Unfortunately on the very last day, someone touched our elf!!!! Ahhh, why now? When he’s ready to go back home to the North Pole? Oh, no!!! Everyone was so worried, but I told them I would run to the store and buy some Elf Magic while they went to watch the Christmas movie in the afternoon. Whew! Thank goodness for the movie, so I had time to whip up the Elf Magic container. Thankfully I read Amanda’s post over at Mrs. Pauley’s Kindergarten and had this plan ready if it were to ever happen. Hers was much cuter, but the kids bought into it so we were saved!! Thank goodness! 

We wrote our goodbye letters to Snowflake on our last day too! They were so cute! 
Now on to our Christmas Crafts!! First of all, I can't believe how FAST that last week went! I planned for so much more than I actually made it to, but it was a fun week. One of the crafts I wanted to make sure we made it to was my Christmas Cat activity with Mr. Pete! We read Pete the Cat Saves Christmas and then made these cute Christmas Cats. They wrote a letter to Santa in the middle and it was so much fun reading them! They did a great job and they turned out adorable!! Click on the picture to take a read for yourself! 

For our Christmas party this year, we had a Christmas Craft Extravaganza! We set up in the library and the kiddos could go to whichever station they wanted to (as long as there was an empty seat). They did really good and loved making all of these adorable crafts!!

For our parent gift, we made these adorable ornaments that have been floating around Pinterest! We painted their hands and stamped them on ornaments. Then they decorated their fingers to look like snowmen. We did have a slight hiccup with this though because the first go around we used tempera paint and when they dried it all flaked off! :( Soooo, thankfully our friends down the hall were doing the same thing and one of my parents from last year and some of our paras came down to help re-do everybody with acrylic paint and then sprayed them so they would dry instantly. That worked MUCH better! 

Now I'll leave you with a pic from the last day before break! It was ugly sweater day and doesn't my para make the cutest little Christmas tree?! ;)

I hope you all had a fabulous time with your kids before break and an equally fabulous Christmas!! 

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Monday, December 30, 2013

Teachers of Instagram!

My friend Elizabeth over at Kickin' It In Kindergarten is hosting a linky party for teachers on Instagram! I must say, Instagram has been my most favorite "go-to" this year when it comes to connecting with other teachers and finding new ideas, so of course I will link up with my top three favorite Instagram pictures from 2013! You should too!! Only a couple rules....don't post about a product and check out three other linker-uppers (I'm digging the new word Elizabeth)! :)

It's so hard to narrow it down to three, but here they are! Oh and if you'd like to follow me on Instagram, my username is @keepinitkrazy! :) 

1. I love that new school year feeling! This is my classroom ready for the first day of school. So neat and tidy and ready to embrace all the new faces!

 2. This was my back to school bulletin board with mister Pete the Cat! I was pretty happy with how it turned out and we've had lots of fun with Pete this year in our room! 

 3. Annnnnddd last, but not least, this picture of me and my hubby! We took a few fall pics this year and I love this one and I love him to pieces!! He's my biggest supporter in everything that I do! 

Now, what are you waiting for? Get your Instagrammin' on and link up! 

I'm also going to link up with Simply Kinder. It sounds like a great way to meet and follow new blogs. Any way to find more inspiration and support fellow teachers sounds like a plan to me! :)

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Sunday, December 8, 2013

Gingerbread Baby Scavenger QR Code Hunt!

This last Thursday was our Fake Friday with our students since we had our district professional development on Friday. It was quite a fun fake Friday if you ask me! We read Jan Brett's "Gingerbread Baby" and then made our very own gingerbread babies. 

 Luckily I had a wonderful, willing parent to make the sugar cookie dough for both kinder classrooms. Then all we had to do was roll out the dough and each kiddo got to cut out their gingerbread girl or boy and name them. 

While I had one table come up at a time to cut out their cookie, the rest of the class was designing what they wanted their gingerbread baby to look like on paper. 

It was so fun listening to their names and I can't wait for them to meet our elf this week and give him a name!! 

While the cookies were baking, we went ahead and had our learning labs. Then we put them on a cooling rack and went to recess while they cooled. 

When we came back, (thinking we were going to decorate our cookies and eat them) they were GONE!!! They did leave a note though with a QR code on it for us to read. The kids were so funny! I wish I could remember all the cute comments they made. They were so into it and ready to find their gingerbread babies before they got hurt running around the school. Their pure belief and innocence is what makes this age one of the best! I love their enthusiasm with things like this. :)

We split up into two groups to go hunting for our gingerbread babies and it was so hard to keep them calm and slow them down because they were SOOO excited tip-toeing running through the halls toward the next clue. We used the clues given to us through the QR codes and figured out where our next stop would be. Our first stop was the office!

When we got back to our classroom, there they were, waiting for us at our desks ready to be decorated! 

I love making these fun memories in kindergarten with these kids! These are the types of things they will remember forever and that's what it's all about! :)

Does anybody else use "Gingerbread Baby" in your classroom? If so, what do you do?! I would love to hear!! 

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Friday, December 6, 2013

District Tech Fair 2013 - Teachers Pay Teachers

Today is the day I present at our district tech fair about becoming a seller on Teachers Pay Teachers! Wish me luck! I'm trying to get better at this whole presenting thing which is totally out of my comfort zone. If you are a new visitor, welcome to my blog and feel free to take a look around! The poll on this post is part of the presentation, so it is intended for those in my session. :)

Thanks for stopping by!

To become a seller on TpT, click here! You rock, you can do it, you should believe in yourself and GO FOR IT!!! :)

"To inspire and be inspired!"

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Thursday, December 5, 2013

Snow Much FUN!!

Just popping in for a quick post tonight before I head to bed! It's been a wild week back to school and I feel like I still haven't been able to catch my breath! I have so much to blog about, but there has been NO time to do it. Just be on the look out for some fun posts about our 3D shape experiment, Gingerbread Baby scavenger hunt, and how my presentation at our district tech fair goes tomorrow! To hold you over, here are some cute pictures of our classroom door and hallway that are ready for winter! 

How cute are those little snowmen?! Enjoy your Friday tomorrow and have a fabulous weekend. If it's cold where you are, like it is here, try to keep warm and enjoy your time off! 

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Sunday, December 1, 2013

December Currently

Hello December!!! Boy, have you just snuck up on me! Such a fun, feel-good time of year so I won't complain. :)

It's time to link up with Farley's Currently for December! See what I've been up to and keep reading until the end to hear about a couple other exciting things!

Listening to Christmas movies...really just movies in general, almost all weekend long thanks to the holidays and free HBO weekend! :)

Loving our new tree! We went on black Friday (later in the day) to look for a new tree to put in our new home. We found the perfect one...a "forever" tree for our family! It's full, the perfect size, and just beautiful! I'm so excited to have it and sometimes get caught gazing at it while watching TV at night. Did I just type that?! Haha, I know, weird right?! I just love it!

Thinking about how wonderful this break was! I had so much fun with both of our families, chatting, playing games, laughing, eating, and just enjoying every minute! I laughed so much last night playing Apples to Apples with my family. Is laughing a calorie burner?! I hope so, then I won't feel so bad about all that food I ate! ;)

Wanting...another day of break! Who doesn't?! It was so wonderful, but it always seems just one day too short. It will be great to go back and see my kiddos though and these next 3 weeks are going to fly!!

Needing....umm...I hate to admit this one, but I'm needing to get my plans done for the week! YIKES!! I'm telling you, one more day and I'd be good! I guess I better hurry up with this post and get to it, huh?!

Favorite Tradition - I love starting a new tradition with my hubby. Every year we decorate our home together and crank the Christmas music! It's such a fun way to get in the spirit. One tradition that I dearly miss would be my dad's side of the family Christmas because our family is huge, so we'd rent a hall, have dinner, Santa would come (imagine that excitement every year as a kid!), 20+ women would do a women's gift exchange, and 20+ men would do a men's gift exchange! It was so much fun, but now that both of my grandparents on that side are no longer with us, the family decided to do a reunion instead. This is the second year without it, and I miss it so much!

Okay, a couple more things! I'm sure you've heard, the CYBER SALE on TpT is on Monday & Tuesday! My whole store will be 28% off with the code CYBER. I have my shopping cart full and ready to check out too, so don't miss out!!

These are a couple of fun, winter items that I just added to my store! I'm super excited about them and ready to share them with my kinders! You should check them out! 


Last, but not least, I have donated to a wonderful fund raiser to help those affected by the Central Illinois tornadoes. Take a look at the many different bundles on TpT. The bundle my product is in is here. Please consider finding the best bundle for you and purchasing to help all those affected. Plus you are in for some AMAZING products no matter which bundle you choose! 

Have a great week!
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