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Monday, February 28, 2011

Literacy Caravan Rescheduled!!!

As you may have read, I was very bummed to have had the flu when my day came to attend the literacy caravan. Fortunately for me, it was cancelled due to snow, and they did reschedule! Three other teachers and I went to the event on Friday. I had a blast! I know...I am a nerd.

The programs that I was able to see presented are....*drumroll*

Harcourt "Journeys"
Pearson "Good Habits, Great Readers"
Scott Foresman "Reading Street"
Macmillan/McGrawHill "Treasures"

If you know anything about any of these programs, please speak up! I know which my favorite was, but I do have reservations about it (primarily that we have that particular company's math program and all of us hate it!). I would love to hear your thoughts if your school uses any of these!

Sunday, February 20, 2011


When it is time for the babies to begin adding numbers, they unfortunately revert back to thinking about how the numeral looks. For example, if I make the mistake of saying one and one is...? Instead of one plus one is...? They automatically say, "11!" It makes me remember that the way I phrase my vocabulary is so important in my job. Over the course of the next few weeks, my kindergarteners will be learning how to combine numbers; adding them by way of pictures, manipulatives, numerals, and addition stories. On Friday, we did an activity to introduce them to this new concept.

 We began by using blocks to represent objects in a story: "I had 7 blocks in my drawer. My brother found 2 more blocks in his drawer. How many blocks did we have in all?"

 The next step was to write the number sentence. We began this after we had represented several different scenarios with the blocks. (Magic trick: dry erase markers WILL easily wipe off of student tables with a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser, and they think they are getting to do something spectacular when they get to write on the table!)

The final step of our lesson was to apply what we could now do on paper! They did great! I really love it when they begin transferring all of their newfound knowledge to do 'hard' work...which we sometimes refer to as first grade work...and then they really feel as smart as they are!!!

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Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Valentine's Day Fun!

We were finally able to have our Valentine's Day Celebration today. It was supposed to have been last Thursday, but got 'snowed out!' The kids and I had a lot of fun, as you can see!

 Passing out goodies and cards!

 The stash.

 The gang with their Valentine mailboxes! Couldn't get a great shot, so I settled for two decent ones :-)

 The 17 love potions that I prepared for them: Eat one chocolate heart, then mix one bottle of water with one package of Kool-Aid mix. Shake well. Drink. Eat one chocolate kiss. Voila! Love Potion!

 Happy Valentine's Day Y'all!
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Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Blog Hops

So this is totally not related to my classroom, but...if you are liking this blogging stuff, you should 'blog hop.' It is a great way to read new blogs and get your blog checked out. Today my blog of choice it To the Top Tuesdays. Check it out, link up, and follow some new friends on their blogging journey!

To-the-TOP Tuesday

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Sunday, February 6, 2011

50 A Day #3!!!

Our principal began a behavior incentive a few years ago called 50 A's. It consists of a chart of 50 boxes attached to a clipboard. Each class from PreK - 4 has one, and that clipboard goes everywhere the class goes. When the class is caught being good or doing something good, whoever caught them initials a box on the chart and adds an 'A.' The classroom teacher can not give her own class an 'A,' but can take an 'A' away if the class is being extra unruly. Some things that are considered 'A' behavior are: standing quietly in line, walking through the building respectfully, following the lunch room rules, and behaving during inside recesses. The entire class has to be doing the right thing in order to get a box filled in. 

When all 50 boxes are full, the class gets to have a celebration! Some common themes are pajama day, character day, beach day, western get the idea. Last week, my class finished their 3rd chart for the year!!! They chose to have a 'play centers all day' celebration with...


Sight Word Matching

 Letter Sounds/Recognition Games

Rice Box

Dramatic Play


All in all, a fun day was had! The students changed centers every 30 minutes so that they wouldn't get bored. They never knew they were learning the entire was just pure fun.

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Friday, February 4, 2011

Snow Days Again?!?!

Yep, I said it. No school on Tuesday of this week for 'anticipated inclement weather,' and early dismissal today (10:30) today because we were actually having a steady snowfall. The snow has not stopped all day, but there does not appear to be any accumulation on the roads.

Granted I was not at school anyway, because of this flu that has ravaged my system! The perk to having a snow day today? I didn't miss the literacy caravan due to sickness, because it was cancelled! I am hoping that it will be postponed to a later date, because I so want a sneak peak at the materials available!

Happy Snow Days!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Meet the Teacher :-)

The beautifully creative and talented Cara over at The First Grade Parade has initiated a Linky Party for teachers! Meet the Teacher is a fun way to get to know the creators of the fun education blogs out there for us to check out and FOLLOW!
The First Grade Parade

About Mrs. Knight (that's me!)

Life as I know it includes sipping sweet tea, laughing with my family, blogstalking, doing the occasional random crafts, and reading. I am new wife to the most precious man alive, Chris; momma to two beautiful girls, Lefty and Boo; recently step-mom to two awesome kiddos, The Boy and Loo; and temporary 'mom' (teacher) to 18 kindergarten babies. This life keeps me hopping! If I am not attempting to blog (here or at The Knight Life), I am at someone's ballgame, dance lesson, band concert, or doing something creative at the house. The hubs and I enjoy trying out new recipes and doing various artsy projects at times.
I am 32 years old, and have been teaching for 5 years; all in kindergarten at the same school. What, you say? 32 and only teaching 5 years? Yes, I was a late bloomer. I stayed at home with my girls until they went to kindergarten. When their dad left, I put myself through school, thinking that teaching would offer me the best opportunity to be available to my babies when I needed to. It was a rough time, but oh so worth it! Who knew that teaching would be my niche?

Now for the Q & A

Q: What would you be doing if you weren’t a teacher?                                             
A:  I would definitely be a stay-at-home momma. I loved it when I had the chance, and miss it now that I don't! 

Q: What are your hobbies?                                                                                    
A:  Hobbies...hmm...reading, blogstalking, cooking, random craft projects that include cross-stitching, sewing, and whatever the kids get me into.                                                                

Q: When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?                     
A:  I was obsessed with being Miss America and a Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader! My mom taught 8th grade and taught a Miss America and a state queen, so I was able to be up close and personal with the real deal a few times. It was fuel for the fire.
Q: What are your guilty pleasures?                                                                 
 A: Coke (doesn't a good one taste ah-may-zing???), tiramisu (a party in my mouth, no doubt), Teen Mom (especially the first season), soaking up the sun near the water (the beach is best, but a boat or pool is fantastic too). I also love watching investigative shows, my faves are Criminal Minds or Law and Order SVU. NCIS and CSI are on the list too...because I have so much free time to watch them all!

Q: What is your biggest fear?!                                                                      
 A: Frogs. I stepped on one in the dark (barefooted) when I was a teenager. Freaked me out so bad I now have a paralyzing fear of them.

Q: When you’re on vacation, where do you like to go?                                  
 A: The beach! Chris and I even got married on the beach last summer!
Q: What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?                                                   
A:  Have no regrets. Everything that happens, happens for a purpose. If it is bad and doesn't kill you, you will come out stronger for the experience.

Q: What do you value most in others?                                                                   
A:  Honesty, honesty, honesty. Be real.

Q: If you could choose one of your personality traits to pass down to your kids, what would it be?                                                                                                        
A: That's a tough one. I hope that my girls have recognized the importance of getting back up when choices and life knock you down. Get back up, and go at it that much harder. I guess that's called perseverance.

Q: If you could have lunch with anyone in the world….living or dead…who would it be?                                                                                                              
A:  Sandra Bullock. She seems so classy and always together, no matter what. Calm, cool, and collected...all that I am not!
Now tell us one random thing about yourself:
When I was 14, I was still under the illusion that even though I barely topped 5 feet, I could model or be Miss America. I had photo resumes out all over the state and convinced my hesitant parents to let me do some local pageants. I did pretty well, but that isn't the random thing. The random thing is that one day, out of the blue, the phone rang with a job offer for me. Chiquita Banana wanted to fly me to Louisiana for a week's worth of photo shoots, with the possibility of landing a spot as their new spokesperson. Unfortunately (or fortunately, depends on how you look at it), those hesitant parents said no, and that's all she wrote!