Thursday, 22 May 2014

Summer Break

I find the 5 week long summer break too arduous. Don't get me wrong. I love holidays but I prefer them in short doses. Like a week off every month ! That would be rejuvenating and exciting. Longer breaks just end up making me languid and snappy. When I ask people how do they pass their time during the holidays, I get varied responses. The most annoying one is, 'make the best use of time and do what you like doing the most'. Well, I like travelling but can I travel for five weeks? That would leave a big crater in my bank account, difficult to refill with my teacher salary !

  Though I have travel plans in place and am eagerly awaiting to feel the salt in the air and sand in my hair on the beautiful Mediterranean coastline, it will still leave me with four full weeks of leisure time.

So while I will try and perfect "the art of  doing nothing" skill this summer, I will also make some interesting things for my kiddos at school. These ideas might inspire you to do something constructive if you sail in the same boat as me.

I am going to start by making rain sticks. 

Rain sticks are long hollow tubes filled with pebbles. When the stick is upended, the pebbles fall to the other side making a sound reminiscent of rain falling. It is believed to have been invented by Aztecs and was played in the belief that it could bring about rainstorms.

Since July will be the onset of monsoons, it will be fun to use rain sticks with kids. I also found a great book to go along with it.
 I also intend to start the unit on Five Senses after the break and will put the rain sticks in the sensory workstation for children to explore.
The blog, "pinning with purpose" gives step by step instructions to make the rain sticks. You can go there by clicking on the link: Rain Stick

Another fun project idea came from Mrs. Gilchrists blog for sight words. It is fun way to get your kids to read sight words. To read more about it you can visit her blog: mrsgilchristsclass.BlogSpot

More Pinterest Inspiration

I found a great tool for classroom management on "little minds at work"

Are you the lucky duck? {Love this classroom management FREEBIE from Tara West!}
Click on the link to get a free printable and a detailed explanation of how this works.

I do intend to read some books because the opportunities for professional development in India for teachers are very bleak.
I am quite keen to start creative writing in my class this year and I zeroed down on the book by Katie Ray.

Another book I am quite excited to read is "Why are all good teachers crazy ?" by Frank Stepnowski.
 Little bit of inspiration will do a lot of good !
Buy Why Are All the Good Teachers Crazy?

I am also working on the 0-10 number pack and five senses unit. I will post them as soon as they get ready. Till then enjoy the break and make the most of it.

Monday, 12 May 2014

Attention Grabbers

A good book, a hot cup of coffee and some rain showers can definitely brighten a dull and dreary day. 
Considering  it was just the first day of the summer break, my spirits should have been more elevated but the quietness and  tranquility in the classroom didn't give me any pleasure,much to my dismay. And if i ramble about how i was on the verge of a dramatic outburst last week for all the noise that the kids were making in the class, people will think i need to be in an asylum. I so wanted to stand on top of the table and scream my lungs out to quieten the noise , but my sanity caught the better of me and i decided to calm myself by taking the 3 magical deep breaths. The kids are trying really hard to get a hang of the things in class and some days are fantastic but some are plain annoying.

So i decided to gather my act together and came up with the quiet spray! My kiddos sure loved getting sprayed with the magical air which reminds them to remain quiet.

I also introduced them to the noise level chart, though it was referred to almost after every 15 minutes in a day. I downloaded the chart from Kinder Kid.
You can click on the link to go the blog:

I do a lot of songs during transition time to catch their attention. But i was forgetting most of the ones i use. So i decided to write them all up and made a copy for my class. The kids like to sing different ones so it can be difficult to remember all. Most of the chants are from Dr Jean. I also found some good ones by Nicole Bunt from 1st grade Owls. I picked the ones i liked and put them all together. I want to give a shout out to my self  for doing this ! HOORAY !

If you would like to get a copy for yourself, just click on the link below to go to my TPT and download for free.
Attention Grabbers

Happy attention grabbing !