Saturday, July 30, 2011

Yeah, My Vista Order Arrived!!!

It is like Christmas morning:) My Vista order has arrived and I love it! Here is what I ordered...

I love my new banner to hang above my doorway as well as the stamps for marking books. 

Return address labels...cute design:)

Here are my invitations to mail to my kiddos for open house and first-day conferences.

These are the postcards I created for the postcard exchange I have joined. 

I created magnets and business cards so parents have quick access to my contact information. 

A great order! I will have to control myself and not do it again too soon!

Friday, July 29, 2011

My Daily Schedule...For Now

I did some major restructuring of my daily schedule last school year. I found myself keeping all curricular areas separate for their time on the schedule. Personally, I like to see more of an integrated approach. So, I switched my schedule into a two-part block. We have a morning block and an afternoon block. Each block consists of a meeting (where I teach a new skill), centers (where students practice skills and have choice), and a wrap-up (where we bring that part of the day to a close and refine our skills). My main focus in the morning is reading, while my main focus in the afternoon is math and science. However, having only two blocks, I am forced to integrate all curricular areas to make things work. I also work with small, flexible groups during the center times.

Take a look at my schedule, if you like. The activity labels match my daily schedule chart that is hanging in our meeting area. Please note that it is prepared for a substitute teacher to be able to take over my class, so things are quite detailed:)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

It's the little things that make great ideas!

I had purchased the magazine/file bins for $1 at Target. I love them, but I had a dilemma; I didn't want to tape labels to them and ruin the bins. I will be using them for students' journals, books, and leveled readers. So, I hot glued mini clothes pins to the back and will be putting frog name tags on those. Problem solved!

Monday, July 25, 2011

A TpT Store Giveaway! Hurry, it is only for 24 hours:)

I have reached 50 followers and would like to thank all those who have helped me in the blogging community with a giveaway. This giveaway is for anyone and everyone!

Please pay a visit to my TpT store. Feel free to find an item that you would like and send me an email of your choice (Email).  I will email your item ASAP for free!

In exchange could you please...

Blog about my giveaway:

and follow my TpT store:

Then just send me an email with your item choice. This giveaway is running for 24 hours (giveaway expires at 12:00 PM on July 26th).

Here is a preview of some of my items:

Building Block Words is a SmartNotebook game that allows CVC word building practice.

Color Frogs and Flies allows children to practice colors while using a sensory table.  

Froggy Football Writing can be laminated and used as a writing board. There are game pieces as well. 

Pirate Word Families utilizes movement. Children sail the words to the X. They can take treasure pieces as they work and use the map if they need assistance. 

Woodland Noun Sort allows children to sort nouns by person, place, animal, or object. If you would like different categories, please note that in your email. 

The Verb Railroad allows children to use their verbs/action words to move pieces of the train across the room. 

I hope you can find something you like. Thanks to all for the help over the last week! 


Thursday, July 21, 2011

Love my new template!!!!

I was a little worried about changing my blog template. I haven't done much with html code and didn't want to lose all the hard work. So, after a little research (learning how to back up my template and insert a new one), I went for it...and I love it! Please stop by and check out my new template:) Thanks to

My fifty followers giveaway will be announced on Monday. I can't wait to offer a freebie to everyone in this fabulous blogging community.

Enjoy your weekend!

Love Diigo!

I bookmark...a lot! Like many teachers, I have a home computer, school computer, iPad, and an iPhone. I have bookmarks on all and I often forget which device has which bookmark. So, I started using Diigo yesterday and I love it. If you are interested, here is a little more information.

Go to Diigo and click on 'Get Started Now'.

Fill in your information and click 'continue'

After you activate your account by email, you will drag the Diigo icon to your bookmarks bar.

When you find a page you would like to bookmark, you just click the bookmark. A menu will open on the right side of your bookmark bar.

You can now click 'bookmark' to add the page to your list. I have downloaded this feature on both computers as well as the app on my iPad and iPhone. I now have my bookmarks no matter where I am! 

Sorry if you already know this, I was just very excited to finally use it! 


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

My TpT Store is Ready!

Please hop over to my TpT store if you have time. If you have any input or ideas to help me out, I would greatly appreciate it. I had a blast creating these items and look forward to adding more. If you like, leave your info in a comment and I will check out your TpT store too!

Randi's TpT Store

Monday, July 18, 2011

Letter Flashcards

I have had several families request letter flashcards over the years. I am not a fan of drill and practice in K, so I recommend they create a game out of it. I personally liked hanging a card or two around the house at a time; on the refrigerator, door, bathroom mirror. I created these cards a few years ago so I could just print them up when families wanted them. Use if you like!

Letter Flashcards

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Almost at 50...

I am looking forward to my first giveaway and the opening of my TpT store. More info coming when I have 50 followers!

Friday, July 15, 2011

The Reading Library...Done!

I have finished sorting my classroom library and I am happy with the turnout. I purchased $1 bins from Dollar Tree and shelving from our local home improvement store. I have left one shelf empty for all the fabulous literacy centers that I have made from these fabulous blogs. Whew! I didn't realize how many books I had! 

Word Wall Idea

I do not have a lot of wall space because I have five large windows in my room. Soooo, I choose to use one of my bulletin boards as a word wall. I created these posters to hang on that board. I wanted something that was simple to add to because whenever several children ask to spell a common word I like to add it to the wall. I laminated these posters and write on them with an overhead marker. That way, I add to the list often and the kids feel like they can have ownership of the word wall. They are simple to look at, but that is how I like to keep things!

Word Wall Posters

A Blog Mixer Linky Party

What a great idea from

Here are my 4 blogs:)

1-A newbie blogger (like me):

2-A blogger in the same grade level:

3-A blogger in a different grade level:

4-A Cute Blog Button (I LOVE THIS ONE!):

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Dollar Tree Craziness!

I think the cashier at the dollar store thought I was crazy... until she heard I was a teacher! I will finally have all the bins I need to re-do my classroom library. Soooo excited!

A very generous giveaway...

Check out this very generous giveaway!


Math Activities: Location Words

We start the year with basic location words. Here are two SmartNotebook files I use to get us started. We sing Dr. Jean's Bear Hunt because of how much the kids love it. I use the file below so the kids can look at all of the different locations in the song. Use if you like:)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

A Great Giveaway!

Check out this blog for a fabulous giveaway!

The Moffatt Girls

Shutterfly Teacher Sites

I started a Shutterfly Site for my classroom last school year. I chose the site for numerous reasons. I like the added security so that student pics and videos are secure. I like that many parents are familiar with Shutterfly and can order pictures of their children as well. The sites are free, unless you want unlimited video. I paid $30 for that service for one year.

My site is 'generic' right now because of summer break. I will leave the password unchanged for awhile if you would like to check it out!
password: myhoppykindergarten

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

I Love my Classroom!

I have had a blast with all my summer classroom projects. Thanks to everyone for the ideas. Here are some pics:) 

My frog welcome signs. I am a little obsessed!

I love the light. My five windows keep the kids energized! 

My reading center is almost complete. I need to fill it with fun games and activities before school. My favorite item is the new seats. I have seen people post about these before. I couldn't believe how easy it was to make them. It was less than $5 per seat. Woo hoo! 

 I have filled the large storage cabinet with games and activities from teacher blogs. Thanks so much! I was able to get them all organized in storage bins this summer. 

My fresh green wall and new plastic bins from Target are my favorites in this section. I will fill the aquarium with Dwarf African Frogs before September. They are simple to take care of and very active. They keep the kids entertained. 

Thanks for checking things out. I had a blast this last month getting ready. Thanks so much for all the great ideas! 

Check out

I just ordered free business cards (which I will use for contact information for parents), a free rubber stamp (to stamp all of my books), as well as other freebies. I also ordered invitations for open house and the first day of school for only $7.99. Lots of other little freebies there as well!

Math Vocabulary Posters

I introduce several math vocabulary words throughout the year (as we all do) but I didn't review them as much as I should. Soooooo, I created some math vocabulary posters. I sometimes use them as a filler activity or will put them in centers. The kids will use them to play 'school'. Who doesn't love watching a five year old imitate their teacher!
I uploaded the SmartNotebook version as well as a PDF. Enjoy:)

Math Vocabulary Posters, PDF

Math Vocabulary Posters, Notebook

Letters b and d

Our alphabet can be a crazy thing to learn when you are four or five years old. There are so many subtle differences between letter shapes. I use this activity in the beginning of the year and have had a lot of success. I have heard of 'bat and ball b' and 'doorknob d' but I wanted to try something different. I like to use 'bat and ball b' and doggy-head d' because the kids seems to enjoy it. You will have children drawing doggy faces inside the letter d for awhile, but they remember which is which! Feel free to use this SmartNotebook activity if you like.

b and d

Monday, July 11, 2011

Beginning Math Activities

I use these two activities just as a short introduction during our first few weeks of math. We utilize Harcourt Math so you may see a similarity.

SmartNotebook Sorting Activity

SmartNotebook Sizes Activity

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Math Freebie

Attached is a shape puzzle activity created with SmartNotebook. I usually put this in centers during the second week. Shape names are included and it also helps the kids get used to sliding objects across the Smartboard.

Saturday, July 9, 2011


Another fabulous giveaway. Checkout

A Give Away!

Who doesn't love free things?! Check out Mrs.Miner's Monkey Business
To enter.

Beginning Sounds Activities

Help yourself to the four SmartNotebook pages below. They are for helping students with beginning sounds. I have used this as a whole group warm-up and as a center activity.

SmartNotebook Beginning Sounds

Laminating, Cutting, and Bagging

Thanks to all the fabulous blogs out there I have had a busy two days of laminating, cutting, and bagging games. I like using plastic bags over file folders because they store easier and hold up longer (in my classroom anyways). Thanks so much everyone!