Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Summer Sight Words

Reviewing sight words over the summer months is a great way to ready your child for new sight words during the 2020-2021 school year.  Sight vocabulary, in collaboration with decoding/encoding skills, is essential when building your child's reading fluency through the early childhood years.  There are TONS of fun ways to review sight words over the summer :-)  Check out the links below to get you started!  

Happy Playing, Laughing & Learning Sight Words All Summer Long!!
Take Care,
Mrs. Weatherholtz 

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Scavenger Hunts Galore!  

  • For a wide range of early childhood scavenger hunts check out the Primary Playground HERE
  • Hop over to Frugal Coupon Living HERE to check out scavenger hunts for all ages, indoor and outdoor, holidays and seasons!  I love the Gratitude Scavenger Hunt found mid-way down the post :-) 
  • Grocery shopping looks a bit different these days but you could definitely use the Grocery Store Scavenger Hunt from The Produce Moms HERE and see what you can find in your pantry and fridge :-)  
Happy Hunting :-) 
Mrs. Weatherholtz 

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Early Childhood May Crowning Craft

I have done this sweet craft for many years in Kindergarten and they always turn out beautifully!  If you would like to do this at home with your family as a religion craft for the month of May you only need a few materials :-)

You'll Need: 

  • Background Paper - In class, we used construction paper but card stock, printer paper, scrapbook paper would all work perfectly
  • Glue - In class, we used liquid glue rather than glue sticks but anything sticky will work :-) 
  • Something to add color....Crayons/Markers/Colored Pencils/Water Colors...whatever you have available :-) 
  • Tissue Paper - If you do not have tissue paper, you could create your own paper flowers and glue them around Mary or draw your own flowers around Mary....All would be beautiful! 
What To Do:
  • Click HERE to grab your Mary printable 
  • Color or paint your Mary and cut out
  • Glue Mary picture to your background paper (we used glue sticks here but liquid glue or tape will also do the trick)
  • In class, we added small sections of liquid glue at a time around Mary for students to add tissue paper pieces (small squares were pre cut but kiddos can cut their own while creating their piece).  We did one section at a time so glue doesn't dry out or get smeared while working.  
    • For tissue paper "flowers" we cut 2x2 (ish) squares of tissue paper for students to crumple into colorful flowers
  • Set aside to dry.  When dry, display your beautiful May Crowning craft :-)  Please share via email or social media....I'd love to see your crafts!!  
Happy Playing, Laughing, Learning & Crafting!
Take Care,
Mrs. Weatherholtz 

Thursday, April 30, 2020

Spring = Insects! 

Chick HERE to check out the blog post from Primary Theme Park for lots of great insect related videos.  Many of the videos are from the YouTube Channel SciSho Kids which is one of my favorites for early childhood learners :-) 

Additional Insect Links for Young Learners:
12 Bug & Insect Books for Little Readers
17 Books About Bugs
10 Cute and Crawly Insect Crafts
25 Bug Activities for Kids (Includes Bug Scavenger Hunt Printable)

Happy Playing, Laughing & Learning!
Stay Well!
Mrs. Weatherholtz 

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Book Recommendation:  I blogged about this book several years ago after checking it out from the Howard County Public Library.  In this time of distance learning, I've found myself thinking about this book as it is FILLED with great ideas for family time outside :-)  I ordered my copy HERE.  The book is organized by season and each season is divided into months.  Each month is filled with 25+ ideas of outside activities, seasonal gear to have on hand, snack ideas, etc.  As we quickly approach the month of May, here are a few May ideas to get you started :-)
  • Don't save the beach ball for the beach!  Pull it out early and see how long your family can keep it in the air w/o dropping to the ground :-) 
  • Map out a vegetable garden or brainstorm vegetables you'd like to grow in a container on your patio this summer :-)  Planting time is coming quickly! 
  • Have a backyard campout - pull out all the camping gear and have a weekend campout w/o even loading the car! 
  • Take an inside toy outside: With Mom or Dad's help, take some of your inside toys outside and enjoy them in the sunshine!  When teaching Kindergarten, one of the best recess moves I made was taking the large blocks outside...it's a completely different sensory experience to play with toys in a new environment :-) 
Happy Playing, Laughing & Learning Outside!
Stay Well!
Mrs. Weatherholtz 

Friday, April 24, 2020

Web Based Virtual Manipulatives 
When in the classroom, students use math manipulatives daily during math instruction.  Our PK-2nd Grade students utilize pattern blocks, counters, etc. daily to visually see the problems they are solving.  Utilizing manipulatives is not limited to Early Childhood learning though!  There are many manipulatives available for students to visually see place value, fractions, decimals, area, perimeter, etc.   

Resources Geared Toward PK-3rd
**Some of these options can be useful for older students as well as they can provide a visual representation of math concepts.

Virtual Math Manipulative Collection from Didax 
A great collection of manipulatives with a focus on K-2; also includes Prime Factor Tiles, Algebra Tiles and Place Value Disks for older students.  

Pattern Shapes from Math Learning Center
A great free build board for PK-K using pattern blocks that are used frequently in the classroom.  In the web app you can free build with blocks or use a template to create designs :-) Another pattern block option is the Pattern Block Tool from NCTM (HERE)

Toy Theater Math Manipulatives 
A large collection of math manipulatives for grades PK-5.  Easy to use and all in one place :-) 

Interactive 100 Charts:

Great Options for 3rd Grade and Up

Lots of graphing options for grades 3rd and up to design, enter data, add labels, preview and save/print graphs.  

An opportunity to work with equivalent fractions through exploration and matching games.  Great for 4th grade review of equivalent fractions :-) 

Choose a number from 2-100 for your grid or circle, roll your dice and identify the fraction, decimal and/or percentage shown then check your answer by clicking the ? for each.  

Matching games with different levels for fractions and mixed numbers.

Use fraction, decimal and percent bars to compare.  

Create color shapes to explore the relationship between perimeter and area.

Happy Playing, Laughing & Learning Virtually :-) 
Take Care,
Mrs. Weatherholtz 

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Check out the virtual Earth Day Celebration at the Howard County Conservancy.  

9:00 am Meet the Conservancy’s Beekeeper
See a demonstration hive from our apiary, learn about the importance of pollinators in our ecosystem and the system of queens, workers and drones that keep the hives buzzing. 

1:00 pm Backyard Biodiversity
What can you find in your yard or nearby natural area? Land Manager Tabby Fique will show you some of the commonly found mammals, insects, trees and fungi in our county. We will also share some of our favorite citizen science apps to record what you find! 

Additional Earth Day Links:
National Geographic Kids 
Discovery Education 50 Ways to Earth Day
The Hidden World of National Parks - Google Arts & Culture

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Animal Webcam Observations

Live webcams are a great way to provide a cross curricular learning opportunity for students of all ages!  There are many great webcams around the country/world that give us a peek into the day of some of our favorite animals without leaving home :-) 

Click the links below to access live animal webcams from zoos, aquariums and nature preserves around the globe.  There are also links to packets to take your observations one step further :-)  

Eagle Cam Iowa, USA (My Favorite!!) 
San Diego Zoo Cams California, USA
Tembe Elephant Park Cam Emangusi, South Africa
Panama Fruit Feeder Cam Anton Valley, Panama
Smithsonian National Zoo Panda Cam Washington D.C., USA
Vancouver Aquarium Jelly Cam Vancouver, Canada
Osprey Nest Cam Kent Island, Maryland

Monterey Bay Aquarium Cams California, USA

Happy Observing!  
Mrs. Weatherholtz 

Friday, April 17, 2020

"Read Your Math"
Math & ELA Mash Up Partner Game

This activity packs a lot of bang for it's buck!  I call my version "Read My Math" and it can be a great warm-up, spelling review, vocabulary practice, word categories, and on and on and on while reviewing place value.  I posted a quick example of how I would use it with 1st-5th groups on Twitter (linked ing the Connect w/Me section of the blog) if you'd like to check it out.  Below are a few suggestions for each grade to get you started.  

How to Play:
Partner one will choose a word (grade level suggestions below) and draw a blank for each letter of the word.  You can included the place value under each blank if needed (pictured below).  Partner one will then give place value clues for each blank.  For example:  There is a "d" in the ones place.  Partner two will fill in the letter for each clue and read the word when all clues have been given.  Depending on grade level, you may decide to switch partners so that your child has the opportunity to fill in blanks and read words as well as give clues.  

K-3rd Grade:

  • Words to Use: 
    • Sight Words
    • CVC (consonant-short vowel-consonant)
      • E.G. cat, mop, cup, pen, sit
    • CVCe (consonant-long vowel-consonant-silent e)
      • E.G. wave, bike, cake, ride, tube
  • Place Value to Use: 
    • ones, tens, hundreds (2nd-3rd grade can add thousands) 
      • 3 letter words for K-1 grade
      • 3-4 letter words for 2nd-3rd grade
K-1st Grade Example:
There is a p in the ones place.
There is a m in the hundreds place.
There is a a in the tens place.
Read Your Math :-) 

2nd-3rd Grade Example:
There is a c in the thousands place.
There is a k in the tens place.
There is an e in the ones place.
There is an a in the hundreds place. 
Read Your Math :-) 

4th-5th Grade:
  • Words to Use: 
    • Sight Words
    • Vocabulary Words
    • Spelling Words
  • Place Value to Use: 
    • ones, tens, hundreds, thousands, ten thousands, hundred thousands, millions
    • tenths, hundredths (decimals)
4th-5th Grade Whole Number Example:
There is a t in the thousands place.
There is a r in the ones place.
There is a w in the millions place.
There is an e in the hundred thousands and the tens place.
There is an a in the ten thousands place.
There is an h in the hundreds place.  
Read Your Math :-) 

4th-5th Grade Decimal Example:
There is an a in the ones place.
There is an e in the tens place. 
There is a t in the hundredths place. 
There is an l in the hundreds place. 
There is an s in the tenths place. 
Read Your Math :-) 

Happy Playing, Laughing & Learning at Home!
Stay Well!
Mrs. Weatherholtz 

Thursday, April 16, 2020

YouCubed offers lots of great activities/games/ideas to pull math concepts into all aspects of the day in fun and engaging ways across all grade levels.  I have spent more time than usual looking out my window over the past few weeks and have really enjoyed watching the trees bloom and the squirrels scurry around the branches above the rooftops :-)  This particular activity caught my eye and made me think about one of my favorite early childhood stories that would go great with the activity.  

What's Going On Outside Your Window? Activity Link HERE
One of Mrs. Weatherholtz favorite read aloud stories, "The Hello, Goodbye Window" (HERE)