Sunday, February 28, 2016

5 Little Speckled Frogs Freebie

Frogs are fabulous! They are intriguing and irresistible to many young children. I love using frogs to teach any subject and concept. I'm sharing some of my favorite activities using these playful amphibians and sharing a new froggy freebie! I created this interactive storybook and counting mat to go along with the song "Five Little Speckled Frogs". It's fun to use and easy to make AND it's free! You can pick up your free copy here.
I had some adorable speckled frog squirters that were just dying to be used, so I decided to make a prop for the 5 Little Speckled Frogs song. I hot glued magnets to the bottom and added them to my cardboard log (the insert that comes with my printer ink). See picture directions on making your own frogs on a log here
The magnetic frogs on a log are great to use for so many things. You can use them to demonstrate positional words (slap some magnets to the sides of the log and the frog will hang out on the side of the log, too). Use them for counting, singing, telling stories, and so much more. You can also use them while singing the song, "Five Little Speckled Frogs".
Need more frog ideas? Here are some of favorite activities involving frogs!
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Use a life size number line and kids can become frogs to practice numeral recognition, skip counting, addition, subtraction, or even beginning multiplication! See it in action here! Get a skip counting pack here.
Grab another froggy freebie to practice long and short vowel sounds. It's fun and engaging! See it in action here. Get the freebie here.
Bring out your sensory tub and explore the life cycle of frogs. See what we did in ours here.
Don't forget that I teamed up with a bunch of fabulous teachers to bring you some leap year fun! We have a Three Cheers for Leap Year sale going on 2/28-3/16. Everything in my store is 20% off!
We have a new set of daily deals for you each day! 2/28 You can get a ton of resources that are seriously reduced to $4. You can only get these every 4 years :) You can scoop up my Devouring Donuts: Number Line 0-20, Subtraction, & Active Learning for just $4! See it in action here.
2/29-  Grab up this deal while you can! You can get tons of bundles for 50% off. I am putting my bundle of spring resources including an ABC order center, syllable sorts, and noun sorts center! You will be very prepared for spring. Get this pack here.
 3/1- Out last daily deal! Grab tons of fantastic resources for only $1. You can get my Grab & Go: Farm Edition for only $1! Get it here!
Last, but not least, don't forget to head over and enter the giveaway!
You can also check out the great deals for Markdown Monday on Kelly and Kim's Kindergarten Kreations! I have my Take Care of the Earth pack on sale! See it in action here and grab a little freebie. 

Hope you have a fantastic Leap Year's day tomorrow! 

March Reading Rally!

Read Across America Day is a nationwide celebration of reading hosted by the NEA! Read Across America day takes place every year on Dr. Seuss' birthday- March 2nd. It is a extra special day that celebrates READING!! I've teamed up with The Primary Pack to bring you some reading fun!!
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This is a day to get creative and show kids the magic you can find inside books! 

As a kid, I was crazy for books. I loved the way I could be transported to another world, just by reading the words on a page. My mom said that I was the only child that would hide to keep reading, instead of going outside to play. I have always had a tendency to get sick and books were my constant companions. I spent countless hours becoming someone else and visiting new worlds, as I recuperated in bed. Magic surrounded the written word.

I want to give this gift of magic to my own children, albeit with a little more balance. I know I've succeeded in passing along my love of reading, when I see my son trying to walk up the stairs while trying to finish the last chapter Harry Potter and my daughter trying to hold her handstand and read the end of Cat in the Hat. It makes me smile.

In the realm of children's books, Dr. Seuss is a master of magic. He was able to craft words and pictures to create irresistible worlds. The words are easy for children to read, but the stories are pure magic. A perfect combination for a beginning reader.

There are so many ideas for bringing Dr. Seuss books to life. Head over to NEA's Read Across America site pick up a bunch of printable activities to use with your kids. They have a classroom activity guide, a printable bookmark, and a class reading list to share what each child was reading! Keep looking and you will find links to pages and pages of classroom activities and printables.

Books and food are two of my favorite things, so I love bringing the two together. The Truffula trees from The Lorax are iconic Seuss. Rambutan is an amazing fruit that resembles the tops of the Truffula trees. I introduced to this fabulous fruit in the Phillipines. Lucky for me, my local grocery store happened to have rambutan in the produce section.
Initially, I introduced my kids to rambutan through the internet. We learned fun facts about rambutan from Then, we compared the images of the trees in The Lorax to the the real rambutan fruit. The kids were thrilled by the similarities. Then, the kids created their own personal rambutan/truffula tree. They created the bottoms of the trees and popped a rambutan on the for top. 
The most fun came next. We actually got to eat the rambutan. We predicted what taste, texture, and color of the fruit inside. 
Then, we actually experienced the rambutan. We felt them and decided that they felt a little fuzzy on the outside and squishy on the inside. My son thought that the fruit felt a lot like a gummy bear and looks like a shimmery jelly fish. It tasted a lot like a sweet and sour grape with a big seed in the middle. The kids were hesitant to taste it, but really excited once they took the plunge. 

We also ate star fruit as a Dr. Seuss food. The kids loved the star shape and immediately held the star to their bellies- just like a Sneetch! I love that they were able to experience new foods and tie them into the books that we were reading!
Need more ideas... Pinterest is full of amazing ideas to use with your kids! I've spent lost many hours immersed in the wonders of Pinterest! Of course, I had to create a board dedicated to Read Across America! You can find the whole board here.

Here are a few of my favorite finds for Read Across America. Teaching Blog Addict has compiled a list of 33 fantastic ideas that you can use to enhance your exploration of Dr. Seuss books! Check it out here or pin it for later.
Get more fun Dr. Seuss ideas to use with Read Across America from Premeditated Leftovers! See the crafts, activities, and printables here or pin for later.
Check out lots more Dr. Seuss and Read Across America Ideas on my Pinterest board!
I hope you have a wonderful time on your Read Across America day and bring out the magic of reading for you and your kids!

Don't forget about the Leap Year fun taking place right now! Check out my blog post with the details. See all the sales, enter a giveaway, and get a $4 deal!! My entire store is on sale from 2/28-3/1. Three Cheers for Leap Year!!

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Three Cheers For Leap Year!!

Leap Year is a fascinating phenomenon! One of my son's friends was born on February 29th and is only 2 this year. My son is obsessed with the idea that someone could really be alive 8 years, but only be 2. A fun idea for an eight year old.

I wanted to hook into the fun of Leap Year with leaping and hopping frogs! I'm sharing some fun froggy ideas to use on Leap Year and throughout the year.
AND I've joined up with a bunch of fabulous teachers to bring you some great deals and ideas to celebrate Leap Year and the rest of the year! I'm also putting my entire store on sale from 2/28-3/1 + some exciting daily deals. You can also enter a fabulous giveaway!
To get started with some ideas for February 29th, you need to check out Crayons & Cuties in Kindergarten's blog post on 29 ideas to use with your kids on February 29th! There are tons of fun filled activities to get your kids excited about the leap year and the number 29. Many of the ideas require no prep, so you can easily get them ready for next week. One of my favorites is marking the 29th spot from your classroom in leaps. I love anything to get kids moving and learning at the same time.
Leap year is the perfect time to break out tons of frog activities. Get kids leaping into their learning!!
Frogs and skip counting are a perfect match, so I wanted to share my Let's Get Hopping pack. I love using the lily pads and frogs to teach and practice skip counting and beginning multiplication. It is great for kids that need to "see and do" to learn. 
I've worked with countless kids over the years that really need to experience concepts through concrete learning. Making a life-size number line is so useful for these kids. They are able to actually move through the numbers to experience greater/less than, skip counting, and so much more. The numbers become real, instead of just a mathematical concept.
In the Let's Get Hopping pack, you print the different sized lily pads onto different colors of paper. This gives kids both a color and size cue, as they skip count. It helps them build a visual picture in their brains, as they move to skip count. Activities like this reach so many different types of learners, because it fully engages learners in multiple ways. Children hold a frog with the number. In the picture below, he is skip counting by 3's. The speech bubble on the frog is blue to match the lily pads on the number line.
 Students can skip count by 2's, 3's, 5's, and 10's in this pack.
 It's such a fun way to find success with skip counting!
Want to bring frogs into language arts? You can get my free Frog and Toad vowel pack to help kids practice identifying long and short vowels. See the DIY directions and watch it in action on this post.
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If you've followed me at all, you know that I am in love with hands on activities. I love creating manipulatives and learning tools out of recyclables or "trash".
 Here are the Five Little Speckled Frogs come to life! This little learning toy is made out of a cardboard insert from printer ink.

 I hot glued magnets to the inside of the insert
and glued grass around the outside.
Hot glue a magnet to the bottom of a plastic frog and the frogs will stick to the top of the log.
 An easy frog manipulative to use with the song "Five Little Speckled Frogs". Fun and easy!
Hope you found some fun ideas to use on Leap Year and throughout the spring.  Check out more great deals and ideas from a bunch of talented teachers!!
You can enter the giveaway starting on 2/28!
Check out all the fabulous deals in the link-up! You can pick up my steal here. I've put my Devouring Donuts pack on sale for only $4! It is originally $7, so you are getting a great deal! See it in action here.
 Be sure to check back each day 2/28-3/1 for your daily deals!!

Sunday, February 21, 2016

The Three Little Pigs Come To Life!

I've had this post floating around in my head for a long time! I have always loved fairy tales. They are just magical. I love the absurdity and whimsy. One of my favorites is "The Three Little Pigs". There are so many versions of this story and it's great fun to read them all. This post shows how we brought "The Three Little Pigs" to life and combined the story with science and math!

Last summer, my kids and some of their friends wanted to make a movie. At the time, I was preparing to present at a preschool conference and had all my fairy tale fun spread out in the craft room. The kids saw the three little pigs and the wolf and inspiration hit! They wanted to bring "The Three Little Pigs" to life.
I collected a bunch of milk cartons to make the little pig's houses, so the kids got busy creating. All the houses were very easy to make. We glued pieces of straw to the straw house, we actually used brown paper cut like sticks (you can substitute real sticks) for the stick house, and scrapbook paper that looked like bricks for the house of bricks.
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The houses were really cute, but I wanted to bring in science. We talked about the various materials and the weight of each material. The kids went outside to collect straw (we used grass), sticks, and bricks (stones). We brought all the materials inside. They filled up each house with the same type of materials. Then, we compared the different weights by placing them on the scale.
After we had all of our houses ready, we broke out the very adorable Three Little Pig's set from Melissa and Doug. They matched the pigs to the houses and got busy working on their script!
 I forgot to mention the best part of this activity! Break out your hair dryer. It makes the reenactment irresistible. I velcroed the Big Bad Wolf to the top of my hair dryer. Then, he can actually "blow" down the houses.
 So. Much. Fun.
They did end up making their video, but before that we had a great time blowing down the different houses. The straw house was out of there in an instant! 
 The stick house took a little more effort.
And the brick house could not be blown down! It was great for discussing the strength and impact of wind on different types of structures. We ended up discussing tornadoes and how they can impact our world.
We had a great time engaging with the fairy tale, looking at the science behind it, and creating our own movie!
It was a really fun activity and I can see parts of it enhancing a unit on the "Three Little Pigs". 

I am in the process of creating a "Grab & GO" set on fairy tales. They are great for writing centers, word walls, use in large group writing activities, identifying and categorizing thematic words, comparing and contrasting elements of fairy tales, and so much more! 
This set isn't quite done, but you can see all my other Grab & Go sets here! Thanks for stopping by and I hope you found some fun ideas to use with your kids, too!

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