Saturday, November 30, 2019

How Would You Like Too... your students, yourself, & a needy child?

And did I mention that you also get a FREE 
Berteau & Co Word Wall? Well, you do!
You even get to choose the style!
Click the image to get started.
Here is the other style:
I love the colors in this word wall!

Here is one more view of this awesome FREE word wall.

If you try 
you can do just that!

Help Your Students: 

Your students will love ESGI so much they will beg you to test them. I'm so sure that they will, that I will send you a FREEBIE from my TpT store if they don't! 

Help Yourself: 

You will save so much time testing, evaluating data, and planning your instruction and intervention! I'm so sure that you will, that I will send you FREEBIE from my TpT store if you don't! 

Help A Needy Child:

If you sign up for your FREE trial with my code:
by Dec. 31, ESGI will donate a cozy pair of pajamas and a storybook to a chid in need!
Click the image to get started.

There is NO credit card required to start your FREE trial and ESGI will not SPAM you! I promise. 

And if you decide to continue with ESGI, you automatically qualify for $40 off of your 1st year because you used my affiliate code! Cool, right?

So, what are you waiting for? 
Here are the details so you get started today making a difference in the lives of your students, yourself, and a needy child. :)

HELP children in need receive cozy pajamas and storybooks this holiday season! It's super simple:

Sign up for a free trial of ESGI using Promo Code GOODNIGHTPALMA by December 31st:

Use the following link to get started:

Sign up and let me know how you LOVE IT!!!

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Addition At The Monster Mall!

This is the perfect time for your students to shop at the 
Monster Mall!  
We met Common Core State Standards in the most un-common way!
Here are some of our monsters and one of our menus.

I started by cutting squares of green construction paper to 7" X 7".

I created some monster pieces (like eyes, noses, scars, hair, necks with bolts, and mouths) and made a menu:
I gathered or made hair, eyes,
noses, mouths, necks, and scars.
I got my craft supplies from Oriental Trading Company. They have wiggle eyes, pom-poms for the noses, yarn for the mouths, and foam sheets for the head, neck, and hair.
Each item on this menu cost one cube.

Then, I called up 4 students at a time and I gave them each 5 cubes, counters, or plastic coins to use as money.
Each of the 4 children I met with used a different
colored set of five cubes so I could keep track of
how many cubes each child gave me.
Each item cost 1 counter, so they did not have enough cubes to buy every item, but they did have enough to buy 5 items.

You can also use any counting blocks or play coins.
You can use stacking counters for money.
Plastic coins are always fun for children to use as they shop for pieces for their monsters.
(Available online at Discount School Supply.)

This menu used 1 cent
 instead of 1 cube for each item.  

Some students bought hair, some did not.  The ones who bought hair got to decide if they wanted the hair to point down like bangs or up like spiked hair.

Some bought a scar to use on the side of their monster's face.  Some used the scar as a mouth.

If they bought a yarn mouth, they got to decide if they wanted the mouth to smile or frown.

Each monster looked different from the others, but they all cost 5 cubes.

We put them up in the school showcase.
Our monsters look great in the showcase
along with our stories.

We displayed our menu in the showcase too.
I love how each monster looks different.  
You can add more parts or increase the prices of the items to make it work for your own class. 

I have shopping receipt templates for 3 other stores:  
Meow Mall:  Students shop for parts to decorate their black cats.
Snowman Shop:  Students shop for parts to decorate their snowmen.
Leprechaun Store:  Students shop for parts to decorate their leprechauns.
You can find these receipts and directions here.

And, I created all of the parts you will need for a Meow Mall, Snowman Shop, & Leprechaun Store.
You can find that set by clicking HERE.

Click the image above.

Click the image.

The Common Core State Standards call for real world math.  Shopping is as real as it gets, even at the Monster Mall!  Here are the CCSS covered in this lesson:

  • CCSS.Math.Content.K.CC.B.4 Understand the relationship between numbers and quantities; connect counting to cardinality.
    • CCSS.Math.Content.K.CC.B.4a When counting objects, say the number names in the standard order, pairing each object with one and only one number name and each number name with one and only one object.
    • CCSS.Math.Content.K.CC.B.4b Understand that the last number name said tells the number of objects counted. The number of objects is the same regardless of their arrangement or the order in which they were counted.
    • CCSS.Math.Content.K.CC.B.4c Understand that each successive number name refers to a quantity that is one larger.
Leave a comment & share a FUN Halloween activity that you do! 

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Friday, July 26, 2019

The First Day of Kindergarten

Schedules, Activities, & Some Great Literature!

Day 1's Schedule-
A simple, generic plan
Boomer Goes to School, by Constance McGeorge 
Click the graphic to get the book. 
Rules/Logistics/Tour the School:
I keep my rules short & sweet:

1. We use quiet voices.
2. We listen with our whole bodies.
3. We walk across the classroom.
4. We are kind.
5. We follow directions.

I even made a little poem about it.
It goes like this:
(And there are hand motions to go with it.)

We raise our hands before we talk,
(Raise right hand up.)
We listen, 
(Right hand cupped to right ear.)
we always walk,
(Fingers of right rand walk along the top of your left forearm.)
We're kind,
(Touch both pointer fingers to the sides of your mouth as you smile.)
We follow directions. 
(Clap, clasp your hands, and place them in your lap.)

Teaching logistics is easy if you explain what you want the children to do and then have 1 or 2 students model it. 

-how to walk to the tables
-how to create the table activity
-how to use the manipulative activities at each table. 
Have 1 or 2 students model moving to the tables and YOU model how to create the table activity and use the manipulative activities. 

By the way, I place the manipulative tubs on the tables and students may play with them when they finish their work. Each day of the first week I rotate the manipulative activity tubs to the next table. That way the children get to explore different manipulatives each day. 

Here are 3 of my 5 tables.
I move the manipulative tubs from one table 

to the next at the end of each day. 
Then, we tour the classroom and discover our 
Class Mascot, Boomer.

Here is Boomer! We found him by my Show & Tell Apron!
If you want a teaching apron like this one, visit
Simple, Independent Activity: 1st Day Hats! 
Something simple like this hat is perfect for the first day of school because they can wear it home. 
After they cut it out and glued on the red band and white star, I called them up to take their First Day Photo. I used this laminated hat for all of the photos. 
The words on the red band:
I had a superstar day in kindergarten!
Go outside and tour the playground 10 minutes before recess begins and find your mascot on the slide or on a swing. 

Have you seen this book yet?
Harriet Can Carry It,
by Kirk J. Mueller
Click the image. 

 An adorable story about Harriet, a kangaroo who wants to spend a day at the beach with her little son, Joey. Harriet is asked by her friends to carry everything from a surfboard to a pair of swim fins. 
If you bring in a beach bag  this story can become an interactive activity as your students place graphics of the items Harriet is asked to carry into the beach bag. There is also a cute activity you can create with this kangaroo:  
Click the image to grab your FREE kangaroo & beach gear. 

Simple, Independent Math Activity: Sorting!
I staple the bottom 5 inches of a lunch bag to Harriet. We sort the graphics and place the images that were in the story into her pouch and we place the images that were not in the story outside of the pouch.  All of the pieces fit nicely in the pouch so students can take Harriet home and retell the story to their family: 
CLICK HERE for the FREE graphics. 
Click the link to get the free graphics framed in boxes.
Click the graphic above to get this FREE set.

Think of Harriet as 
a summertime version of The Mitten. 

Lunch & Fire Drill:

We walk to the lunchroom and discover our mascot there. 

After lunch, we discuss and practice a fire drill.
Then, we do a group activity like a movement song or a game like one of Heidi's Songs.
Click the image to see all of Heidi's products. 
I LOVE HeidiSongs! She has amazing DVDs about letters, sounds, numbers, sight word, and so much more. You can see all of her products by 

2nd Table Activity:
Chick-Chicka-Boom-Boom, Welcome To Our Classroom! We read the book and then, this activity stays at school to create a cute bulletin board. 

Give students the random letters or the letters in their name. 

Isn't this a cute bulletin board?

Here is a 2D version of this activity.
It makes a great page your your memory book too!

 Literature or Complete 1 Page of Our 
Letter Name Book:

We Look for "A" or "a" in our names:

We look at each nameplate and the students tell me if they see an "A" or an "a" in any of the names. I list all of the names that have an "A" or an "a", we count how many we have, and fill in the first page of our class Letter-Name Book. We look for 1 letter each day for 26 school days. Then, this book becomes part of our class library.
Click the image to grab this Letter-Name Book. 

CLICK HERE to grab my Letter-Name Book. 
It is also part of my 
CLICK HERE to grab that bundle. 

Daily Closure Activity: (Do this every day, all year.)
Have the class help you to complete the first page of your daily diary: This re-caps the day and helps your students remember what they did in school that day so when their parents ask them, it is fresh in their minds. 
Click the image. 
to grab your Daily Dairies for the entire year!
This set is also part of my 
Beginning of the Year Bundle.
It contained 1st day certificates, 
a Class Mascot Book, 
Daily Diaries for the year, 
and the Letter Name Book!
CLICK HERE to grab that bundle. 

Have you signed up for your 
FREE trial of ESGI yet? 
Use my code, KFUN
to get $40 off of your 1st year 
and you will be entered to 
win one of 11 Amazon Gift Cards 
valued from $50 - $500!

You can view Part 1 of my "Back to School" series 

This post contains affiliate links. 

Friday, July 19, 2019

Can You Tell 2 Truths from 1 Lie & Win A $50-$500 Amazon Gift Card?

Join The FUN & Win Big:

First, tell me which one of these is a lie.
(There are clues 
included throughout this blogpost.)

How To Get This Sweet Deal:
Continue to read my blogpost for clues!
It's as easy as 1, 2, 3...

1. Above, are 2 truths and 1 lie about me. 
All you have to do is leave a comment 
telling me which one is the lie!

(You can win even if you 

Just make sure your account is active.)

2. Then, sign up for a FREE Trial with ESGI using my promo code: 
(There is no credit card required to do this step and it automatically qualifies you for $40 off of your 1st year if you should choose to purchase it.)

3. Last, share your post with your guess along with #ESGIBTS19 on your own social media account.

Teachers who complete these 3 steps 
will be to win 
one of ten $50 Amazon Gift Cards 
AND the $500 Grand Prize!

Seriously, what are you waiting for??? 

What? You say you must use your district's assessments? 
~No problem. You can still use ESGI and once your administrators see how much USEFUL DATA you get, they will want you to use ESGI with, or maybe even without, your district's assessments.
~And, you can even create your own custom test to match your district's tests or use one of the Built-in Tests like mine! 
to see my ready-made tests.

If you want more info (& clues for the questions), here it is...

This was me:
Click the image above to get started.

ESGI to the rescue!

Click the image above to get started.

I started using ESGI in my kindergarten classroom in 2009 and I immediately gained:
1.  Instant data on EVERY student's skill level.
2.  User-friendly reports for parents &  
3.  Students who begged to be tested! Really! :)
to get started!

And, if you sign up for a FREE trial now,
 (no credit card required), 
tell me in the comments which one of the questions above is a lie, 
(Find more clues 
by reading the rest of this blogpost.)
and post about it with #ESGIBTS19,
you will be entered to win one of 
eleven $50-$500 Amazon gift cards!

And, did I mention that if you 
use the code KFUN 
when signing up for your FREE trial 
you will automatically qualify for 
$40 off of your 1st year?

This is win-win-win!

So, let's get started:
and sign up for your FREE trial.
Remember to enter the code KFUN.

The summer is the PERFECT TIME 
to explore ESGI & get started with it.
When you get your class list, 
just enter the 
names of your students, 
their gender, 
& home language. 

You will love all of the built-in tests available on ESGI's website...

...but if you need to use specific assessments, just reproduce them using ESGI's built-in test builder. You can ALSO create your own unique tests! They even have built-in fonts and graphics to help you. Visit their site and check out their video tutorials and see how easy it is!

Let's Get To Testing:

Your students will BEG YOU to test them so they can watch their data circles fill up and turn green
You can test on a desktop, a laptop, or even an iPad. 

My in-coming students LOVED testing with ESGI.

How it Works:

The teacher asks the question seen on the screen and then clicks "yes" or "no" based on the student's answer. Easy, breezy, lemon squeezy!

And Then There Is The Data:

Incredible data on each and every skill tested.

This is why I LOVE the bar graphs:
If you click on the grey part you see the names of the students who did not get that question correct! That grey list is perfect for creating your RTI re-teaching groups!

ESGI also tracks each individual student's progress. The grey circles turn green as each student masters the skills on each test. Your students will LOVE to see their circles turn green, so they will often beg you to test them! 

Click the chart for more info. 

Then, There Are The Flashcards:

Individualized flashcards for each student!
I travel all across North America presenting professional development workshops for teachers and using flashcards as "skill cards" is one of my favorite ideas to share.
I called them "skill cards" because I stored each child's cards in a sandwich-sized ziplock bag to use as a reference as they include only the skills each child needed to work on. 
These cards become RTI kits to re-teach skills to students in class or to send home for parents to review. You can also use the cards as brag tags as students master the skills!

And Then, There Are The Parent Letters:

These are so much better than any report card, so I just stapled the parent letter to the front of the report card because it was easier to understand. 
And there is so much more!

Sign up by Sept. 30 and get in on the FUN!
You will get:

ESGI saved me so much time, I was able to actually go home and plan fly fishing trips around the word!
Here I am fly fishing in Chile:
We fish barbless & always catch & release. 

And here we are fly fishing in Alaska.

My husband fly fished in Ireland, but I didn't. 

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Flip Your Small Group Table With Today's Tip:

Find Out How I Use This To Teach Writing:

Click the image above to grab these.

(If you click the image above, it will take you to a set of 30 sheets of 8 1/2" X 11" lined sheets.)

1st: Laminate a blank sheet of construction paper.*
2nd: Attach a sheet of lined dry-erase contact paper to the laminated construction paper.
It looks like there is a bubble of air under the dry erase
paper, but it's only the glare.
 (Leave room at the top for sample letters &/or numbers.)
The red mat has a red cup of dry erase markers and
an eraser.  The orange mat has an orange cup, etc.
3rd: Attach letters and/or numbers to the top with clear tape. 
*Or... you can attach them with a glue stick before you laminate the construction paper. 

Now, each child has their own lined dry erase placemat to use during small group time.

The little dry erase markers and erasers from Target's Dollar Spot finish this off!
 If you want the 8.5" X 11" size,  Click HERE for the link from another source.  

The best part about using these is that you can flip them over if you are doing a cut and paste lesson and the laminated mats keep the glue from getting on the tables.  The mats wash up easily and you won't have any more glue drying on your tables!

So, How Do I Use These To Teach Writing?

1. When using a writing prompt, the teacher writes what the student dictates on the dry-erase paper for the student to copy.
Here is an example of one of my writing prompts
While students are illustrating & tracing the prompt, the teachers asks them what they are drawing and writes it on their dry-erase paper for them to copy.
Click on the image above to grab the set of prompts.

2. When a student needs help spelling a word, the teacher can help the student to sound-blend the word on the dry-erase paper and then copy it from there.

I created writing cards to help students build sentences that are a lot cuter than these.Find them by clicking on the image above. 
3. When a student needs to practice letter formation, they can practice on dry-erase paper.

For Whole Group Time:
Cover an old easel with the poster size lined dry-erase contact paper for your morning message or that teachable moment!
Spaghetti & Meatballs:
Leave enough room between the letters in a word for a piece of spaghetti
and enough room between words for a meatball.
I made this from a bamboo skewer & a wooden bead from a craft store. 

Click the image to grab these.
ALL of these ideas allow you to erase and the dry-erase paper may be used again and again! Now, that's sustainable! 

I will post Part 2 of 3 Next week.

Palma :)

You might also like:
Our First Day of Kindergarten Note for Parents

The Royal King of Ing

Number Formation & Chants
See you all next week!
Palma :)