Showing posts with label prekindergarten. Show all posts
Showing posts with label prekindergarten. Show all posts

Dippin' Dandelions STEM Challenge

Dipping dandelions into a glass of water to see what happens to them is the newest TikTok challenge out there.  (I found out about this challenge from someone who told me about it after reading Learning About Dandelion Life Cycles.)  To do this challenge, you dip a white fuzzy dandelion head into a glass of water, keep it submerged for a few seconds, and pull it out.  Then you observe any changes that may have occurred.  Pretty simple, eh?  My son and I gave it a try earlier today and this is what happened...

What happens when you dip a dandelion in some water? We tried the dipping dandelions TikTok challenge to find out! Fun STEM activity for all ages. #kellysclassroomonline

Learning About Dandelion Life Cycles

Dandelions... also called puffballs, lion's head, lion's tooth, and monk's head... are some of the first flowers that appear in the spring.  Spring animals love to eat them.  Children love to play with them.  Science teachers and homeschooling families like to use them to talk about plant life cycles.  Keep reading for a quick science + craft activity and children's book suggestion you can use to teach dandelion life cycles to the children you work with!

Learn about plant life cycles, make a  dandelion life cycle craft, and read The Dandelion Seed by Joseph Anthony.  Perfect from spring!  Preschool to first grade.  Science, ELA, STEM/STEAM. #kellysclassroomonline

How to Make Earth Day Seed Bombs

Earth Day is almost here... are you looking for an easy-to-make craft your students and children can make?  Stevie Rae from 🌱🌍 Funtimes Daily Fun and Learning 🌍🌱 and her family recently made some Earth Day-themed seed bombs using items that can be purchased inexpensively at a dollar store.  In this guest post, Stevie Rae describes how they made their seed bombs and shares some of the photos she took along the way.  Thanks, Stevie!

Learn how to make seed bombs from construction paper and flower seeds with this easy DIY Earth Day themed seed bomb recipe. #kellysclassroomonline

Watch Over Our Water by Lisa Bullard + Minilesson + Free Poster

The amount of water that we have in the world right now will always be the same.  We will never have any more of it... and we will never have any less of it.  The water is in the rivers, lakes, streams, and oceans.  It's in the air.  It's in the ground.  It's locked in ice.   And... only 1.5% of it is accessible and drinkable.  This poses a serious problem.  If only 1.5% of the world's water is accessible and drinkable, how do we take care of what we have?  How can we make sure it's not wasted?  What can children do to help?

Learn about ways to conserve water and to keep it clean. Watch Over Our Water by Lisa Bullard + Minilesson + Free poster. #kellysclassroomonline

I Have Ants in My Pants by Julia Cook

Using children's literature in the classroom can be a powerful strategy to talk with students about difficult topics in a gentle, non-threatening, manner.  For example, children's literature can help you and the students talk about behavior problems that pop up in the classroom without calling children out.  It allows you to focus on a specific character's behavior in the book and analyze the behavior and the effects of that behavior.  It can also lead to discussions about what could the character have done differently and how your students can apply what they learned to their own lives.  

I Have Ants in My Pants by Julia Cook is a newly released children's book that would be a good book to read if you have wiggly and restless students in your class.  It's about a little boy Louis who has difficulty managing his body.  I Have Ants in My Pants depicts some of his behaviors in a lighthearted way, the effects of his behavior, and offers strategies for him to try.  Keep reading to learn more about I Have Ants in My Pants, what can cause children to feel restless, and for strategies you can use to help them.

Learn what causes students to feel restless and how to help them manage those feelings with the children's book I Have Ants in My Pants by Julia Cook. #kellysclassroomonline

The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Natasha Wing + STEM Activity

A Visit from St. Nicholas... also known as 'Twas the Night Before Christmas... by Clement Clarke Moore is a traditional Christmas poem that has inspired authors to write parodies, satires, and their own versions of it.  Are you familiar with The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Natasha Wing?  Children's author Natasha Wing was so inspired by 'Twas the Night Before Christmas that she wrote a St. Patrick's Day version for children to read!  Keep reading to learn more about The Night Before St. Patrick's Day and how you can tie it into a STEM/STEAM activity for your students.

The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Natasha Wing is a book inspired by 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. Read the book then build a leprechaun trap!
(This is an updated version of a blog post I wrote in 2016.)

10+ Steps to Reading Success by KP Carter and Dr. Kimberly Biddle

This is a sponsored post from KP Carter and Dr. Kimberley Biddle.  This post contains information about an upcoming literacy workshop for parents of young children.  Parents are children’s first teachers. This year parents are really teaching, or homeschooling, or substantially supplementing or monitoring their child’s education.  Ms. KP Carter and Dr. Kimberly Biddle will be conducting a workshop for parents on March 7, 2021 at 3pm PST. The cost is $40.00. To register for the conference go to this website www.kpcarterwrites.com. Registration ends on March 3, 2021.

10 Steps to Reading Success! A workshop for parents of children ages birth to 12. Hosted by KP Carter and Dr. Kimberly Biddle. March 7, 2021 via Zoom.

The Mermaid and the Grumpy Old Clam by Kirk Kirkpatrick

Kirk Kirkpatrick recently released his first children's book called The Mermaid and the Grumpy Old Clam.  The Mermaid and the Grumpy Old Clam is a sweet story for young readers about a mermaid who goes swimming with her fish friend.  While they are swimming, a grumpy old clam on the ground opens his mouth and snaps it shut on the mermaid's tail.  Oh no... the mermaid is stuck!  How will she get away?  How will her fish friend help her?  Keep reading to learn more about The Mermaid and the Grumpy Clam, how the mermaid gets away from him, and for a simple... yet fun... enrichment activity for your students.

Learn about friendship and story elements with The Mermaid and the Grumpy Old Clam by Kirk Kirkpatrick. Includes a fun math center activity.

Marvelous Masks by Nicole Billick

Using children's books to introduce vocabulary words to young readers is an important strategy used regularly by preschool and elementary school teachers.  Children's books can expose readers to new words that don't ordinarily come up in day-to-day conversation.  For example, in Marvelous Masks by Nicole Billick, readers learn about the different types of masks and who wears them.  Some of the vocabulary words in Marvelous Masks will be familiar to readers... such as cowboy, doctor, and superhero... but other vocabulary words... such as chemist and blacksmith... may be new to them.

In this guest post, author Nicole Billick talks about her book Marvelous Masks and where she got the inspiration to write it.  She also describes some activities parents and teachers can use with their children and students when they finish the book.  Keep reading to learn more about Marvelous Masks and the author!


(This is a guest post written by Nicole Billick.  To learn more about guest posts, please visit my About Me page.)

Will You Always Be Here? by Nadine Damo

Once upon a time, many moons ago I used to be a preschool teacher.  I taught preschool for a few short years and really enjoyed that experience.  It was nice to plan lessons without having to worry about standardized tests, being able to focus on social skills, and making learning fun for the little ones.  We ate snacks, sang songs, played with toys, made crafts, and read lots of books.  One of my favorite times of the day occurred after lunch.  We would turn down the lights, read a soothing story, play some soft music, and tuck the children in for the naps.  Zzzzzzzzzz.

It was important to read soothing books during that time... exciting books would fire the children up, making it hard for them to settle in for their naps.  Nadine Damo recently published her first book called Will You Always Be Here? which is a good example of the kind of book I would have read way back when.  It's a soothing story about a baby owl who is anxious about many things but finds comfort and reassurance in his father's... and Father's... strength and guidance.  Keep reading to learn more about Will You Always Be Here? and for a simple arts-n-crafts activity you can make with your students.

Learn about a Father's love when you read Will You Be Here? by Nadine Damo.  Includes a lesson plan and directions to make a torn paper owl craft.

When We Stayed Home by Tara Fass and Judith A. Proffer

It's wintertime in the northern hemisphere and the COVID-19 pandemic is still going strong. Even though scientists are making progress in manufacturing and distributing vaccines, it's going to be some time before life goes back to normal. During winter, children are often cooped up inside their homes due to bone-chilling temperatures and poor weather conditions. Now that it's winter and we are living through a pandemic, children will be cooped up even more so than usual. It can be boring for them to be in the house day after day. What's a child to do?   In their book When We Stayed Home, authors Tara Fass and Judith A. Proffer offer some suggestions of things children can do. Keep reading to learn more about When We Stayed Home and for a quick language arts minilesson to go with it.

When We Stayed Home by Tara Fass and Judith A. Proffer helps children brainstorm ideas for things to do while staying at home during the pandemic.

Broccoli Rob and the Garden Singers by John S. Armstrong

Several weeks ago, I wrote a blog post about The Saint Nicholas Day Snow by Charlotte Riggle.  In that post, I wrote about the benefits of reading a story multiple times to help students improve their comprehension of the story.  

Broccoli Rob and the Garden Singers by John S. Armstrong is another story in which students can benefit from reading multiple times.  It lends itself well to choral readings, dramatic play, and music... making repeated readings of Broccoli Rob and the Garden Singers FUN!  Keep reading to learn more about Broccoli Rob and the Garden Singers and how you can integrate it into your language arts lessons.

Learn about characters and events while reading Broccoli Rob and the Garden Singers by John S. Armstrong. Make hand puppets and choral read the story. #kellysclassroomonline

Storytime Book Club

A lot of community and public libraries are closed right now because of  COVID-19.  And... in the school districts that switched to virtual learning only... many school libraries are closed as well.  These closings are an unfortunate side effect of the pandemic.  For many children, these libraries were their only access to free books and literature.  Some libraries are finding ways to get books to their patrons, but that's not always the case.  

The creators of the Storytime Book Club recently contacted me about a sponsored post.  They wanted to pass on some information about their new subscription service.   This subscription service/book club helps parents find books for their children to read without having to rely on a library that may or may not be open at any given time.  When you join the Storytime Book Club, you will receive an assortment of books delivered to your house.  You and your children can read the books for as long as you'd like and send them back when you're done.  Then you can select themes for your next book assortment.  It's an interesting concept and one I think you should check out.  Keep reading for more details about this new book club!

Learn about the Storytime Book Club, its mission, and about its subscription boxes for children.  This is a sponsored post.  #kellysclassroomonline

(This is a paid sponsored post from Storytime.)

Zester the Zebra and His Missing Stripes by Christen Conrad

Early readers start learning about story plot and structure right from the get-go.  They learn that stories tend to follow a pattern and how to identify the story elements within that pattern.  The basic story elements include:
  • characters (the main people or animals in the story)
  • setting (where and when the story takes place)
  • problem (the biggest problem in the story or decision that needs to be made)
  • solution (how the problem is solved or the final decision made)
Zester the Zebra and His Missing Stripes by Christen Conrad is a fun, fast-paced story with easily identifiable characters, setting, problem, and solution that could be integrated easily into a language arts unit about story elements. Who is Zester the Zebra? How did his stripes go missing? How can you integrate Zester the Zebra and His Missing Stripes into your lessons? Keep reading to find out!

Learn about story elements and friendship with Zester the Zebra and His Missing Stripes written by Christen Conrad. Lesson includes a fun zebra craft.  #kellysclassroomonline

Goose Farm Adventure by Kenyetta Obie

About two months ago, I wrote about a children's book called Grow! How We Get Food from Our Garden by Karl Beckstrand.   Grow! was a rhyming book about all of the fruits, vegetables, herbs, and edible flowers we can harvest from our gardens.  Today, I am writing about another children's book about gardening.  This one is called Goose Farm Adventure (affiliate link to Amazon) and was just released this autumn by author Kenyetta Obie.  Like Grow!, Goose Farm Adventures teaches children about the foods that come from the garden.  Whereas Grow! was a rhyming book that played with words and alliteration, Goose Farm Adventure is an alphabet book about a little duck who goes on a visit to his grandparents' house and discovers what they have growing in their backyard.  Both are really good books and can be used together.  Are you curious to learn more about Goose Farm Adventure and how you can use it in your classroom?  Keep reading to find out more!

Learn about story elements, gardening, fruits, and vegetables in this fun alphabet book by Kenyetta Obie.  Early childhood to kindergarten read aloud.

Goo on My Shoe by Jacqui Sheperd + STEM Activity

When teaching reading to young or struggling readers, teachers often use poetry as one of the strategies to help them.  There are a lot of reasons why we use poetry:

🍎 Poems tend to be brief and easier to read.
🍎 Repetitive reading and mastery of poems build students' confidence.
🍎 Choral reading of poems encourages hesitant students to read out loud with the others.
🍎 Teachers can use poetry to teach word recognition skills and build vocabulary.
🍎 We feel emotions when we read poetry.  Talking about those emotions helps to build a better understanding of ourselves and others.

Goo on My Shoe (affiliate link to Amazon) by Jacqui Sheperd is a story for young readers that is written in poetic form.  It has a likable main character and a storyline that will keep students engaged and motivated to read.  Read on to learn more about Goo on My Shoe and how you can integrate it into your language arts lessons.  There is even a simple goo recipe for you to make with your students!


Learn about rhyming words, words with the /oo/ sound, and how to make your own goo with the book Goo on My Shoe by Mari Schuh.

Leaves in Fall by Mari Schuh

Autumn... also known as fall in some parts of the world... is the transitional season between the heat of summer and the cold of winter.  In the northern hemisphere, autumn lasts from mid-September to mid-December and from the beginning of March until the end of May in the southern hemisphere.  Autumn is marked by changes in the environment such as:

🍎 Leaves changing colors and falling from the trees
🍎 Temperatures dropping 
🍎 Days getting shorter while nights get longer
🍎 Animals making preparations for winter
🍎 Farmers harvesting their crops

Mari Schuh recently wrote a non-fiction book called Leaves in Fall (affiliate link to Amazon) for early readers in which she describes what happens to leaves during autumn.  Full-color photos and kid-friendly vocabulary are used throughout her book. Read on to learn more about Leaves in Fall and how to integrate it into your lessons at school.

Learn about the colorful autumn leaves in Leaves of Fall by Mari Schuh.  Read Leaves in Fall, go on a nature walk, gather leaves, and make a collage.

Dorktales Storytime Podcast by Jonathan Cormur

Sometimes when it's really quiet in the classroom and the students are working on an art project or craftivity, I like to play soft music or an audiobook for them to listen to.  It's a fun way to break up the day and add some variety to our routines.  I recently learned about Dorktales Storytime Podcast by Jonathan Cormur when his people contacted me about hosting a sponsored post.  I listened to a couple of episodes from the podcast, enjoyed the ones I listened to, thought that they'd be something my students would enjoy listening to during those quiet times, and agreed to the sponsored post.  Keep reading to learn more about Dorktales Storytime Podcast and to see if it's something your students may enjoy too!

Learn more about the Dorktales Storytime Podcast by Jonathan Cormur.  This is a sponsored post, hosted by Kelly's Classroom Online.

(This is a paid sponsored blog post by Jon in Character.) 

Make a Wish on a Fish by Jennie Wiley

Rhyming words is one of the first skills children learn as early readers.   Being able to rhyme words teaches children about how language works, how to identify sounds within words, and can even help children in decoding the words they read.  Rhyming is sometimes a predictor of how well children will learn to read.  The more children listen to poetry and participate in activities like fingerplays, the easier it will be for them to connect and make sense of what they're reading.  Make a Wish on a Fish by Jennie Wiley (affiliate link to Amazon) is a book written as poetry and with lots of rhyming words.  Keep reading to learn more about Make a Wish on a Fish and how to use it in your reading lessons.

Language arts lesson about reality vs. fantasy and rhyming words for young readers using the book Make a Wish on a Fish written by Jennie Wiley.

What's My Instrument? by Johnny Oddsocks

I need to lay something out there for everyone to see.  I am a HUGE advocate for keeping music education in our schools, so when the author Johnny Oddsocks asked if I would be willing to write a blog post about his book What's My Instrument? (affiliate link to Amazon), I quickly agreed.  In his book, Johnny Oddsocks tells the story of Marilyn the Mongoose who wants to start a band and introduces kids to a variety of musical instruments.  Keep reading to learn more about What's My Instrument? and how you can integrate it into your language arts or music lessons at school.

Have fun learning about musical instruments with the story What's My Instrument? written by Johnny Oddsocks. Integrated language arts lesson plan.