Monday, September 20, 2010
On Day 1 - I sent in pretzels, colby jack cheese sticks, strawberries and grapes for class snack.
On Day 2 - I sent in homemade granola for the pre-test breakfast and then I sent in cheddar crackers, string cheese, carrots and sliced cucumbers for the class snack.
On Day 3 - I sent in hommade mini blueberry muffins for the pre-test breakfast and then I sent in cheddar cheese sticks, whole wheat crackers and grapes for the class snack.
Each day I pre-packaged each snack in individual quart size bags (each quart size bag contained a snack bag of pretzels, a snack bag of fruit and a cheese stick) so it would be easy for the teacher to pass out and the kids to eat. I know it might sound like a lot of food but the teacher already e-mailed me and said the kids were starving and ate it all up!!
Also, WhatACuteIdea! has these adorable CogAt survival Kits available for purchase for your teacher. Are they not adorable!!
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
So what is the proper etiquette for displacement? I say don't gloss over it - call it like it is. I took a "Pity Party" pack to school today and left it on my teacher's desk during recess. I filled it with her (and her para pro's) favorite candy, favorite soda and a gift card to their favorite restaurant for them to go out and have some refreshments on me this week because they deserve it. I wrote them a short card that said I was sorry and that if anyone deserved to have a pity party it was them!! I'm praying that no one else is having to tuck their babies into bed crying tonight because they are upset, confused and scared of being the "new kid" in class when they did NOTHING wrong. But sadly, I'm know I'm not the only one and I think we need to keep in perspective how hard this has to be on the teacher that this is happening to as well...
Monday, September 13, 2010
Sunday, September 12, 2010
Well, I still love them - only now I've outgrown the Strawberry Shortcake theme (and right as it was coming back into style;). You can purchase these sheets of paper off the Internet and create any theme "shrinky dink" you like! Now I know what you are thinking - what in the world can I make with this crap. Well, I've made charms for jewelry, in class we've made charms and threaded ribbon through to make book marks, key chains, fan pulls, zipper pulls, luggage tags, ornaments and recently I made gift tags with them:) The possibilities are limitless!!
Step one is to google Shrink Paper and choose the kind that works best for you. I bought white, because that's how I roll. But there are clear shrink paper sheets, clear colored shrink paper sheets and more!
Now please make sure you read the directions for the paper you purchase. And don't be intimidated - most of these directions are common sense.
The paper I purchased can be printed on from a computer printer - or you can just draw on it. Or you can do what I did and do BOTH! I decided to make tags for our themed bingo baskets. I thought they would be cute additions to the baskets and the kids love them. So, I first printed out what I wanted the tag to say and then I traced the shape around the words I printed. See....
Next you place your image on a clean cookie sheet...or in my case a clean cookie sheet that looks dirty because I bake a lot which is why I'm trying to lose weight and trying to run now but it isn't really working because I'm hungry and so I keep baking more crap and OH yeah, the shrinky dinks.....
I placed them in the oven at 375 degrees for 2 minutes and watched them very closely. Now don't panic because (just like when we were little) they still curl way up into a ball and rock back and forth in the oven. Then they start to unfurl again and lay flat. Once you see the shrinky dink has stopped moving completely take it out. I usually have a very thick potholder or towel in my hand and I press down to make sure the shrinky dink is flat. These are very pliable when they are coming out of the oven but they begin to harden quickly so you want to "flatten" it out as you are bringing it out from the oven. And presto here are the tags shrunk. See how small they are compared to the scissors and the hole punch now?
Here are all the things my children made from the scraps of the sheet we used to make the tags above. We made a birthday charm to go on a present for my daughter's friend. We made a best friend's charm to go on a bracelet my other daughter is making. I wanted you to see how the colors become darker and more intense when they are baked. The scrap of paper above the best friend's tag is the original color before it was shrunk. SO, be careful you use lighter colors when coloring!! We practiced making an Army "dog tag" for my son and we made a charm for a key chain.
Next we decided to make a Christmas ornament. These are GREAT holiday crafts to make with your kids. You can actually attach them as gift tags that can then be used as an ornament. Below I again printed the words off the computer that I wanted on the ornament. Then I traced the ornament template around the words. I used the whole sheet because I wanted it to be the size of a regular ornament once it was completed.
Then my daughter's and I colored it in. We liked polka dots for this one. Next we cut out the shape and punched out a pretty big hole to later thread ribbon through. Again, I took a picture for you to see the size before we shrunk the ornament.
And here it is after it's been baked and shrunk. All it needs now is some cute red ribbon!!
Friday, September 10, 2010
I have always loved to cook and bake, and so even when I was in college I liked to make homemade food with real ingredients (and less mixes or crap from a can). Now that I'm a mom, not only do I feel better about making homemade snacks because I know exactly what's in them - but they are usually cheaper to make myself. I also think it's really important to educate our kids about food and what is IN the food they eat so they themselves can make better choices and have a hopefully better relationship with food as they grow. Below are some of my favorite "store bought" snacks that we make homemade at our house. What are some of yours?
For the Pop Tart recipe click here.
My recipe is adapted from Ina Garten's and she now has a granola bar recipe as well. You can click here for the bar recipe:)
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
Here is the link to the actual article:
And here is what the article says:
13 Things Your Child's Teacher Won't Tell You
Reader's Digest Article - Interviews by Neena Samuel
A look inside a teacher's mind could help you understand lesson plans and maybe even guide your child to perform better.
1. If we teach small children, don’t tell us that our jobs are “so cute” and that you wish you could glue and color all day long.
2. I’m not a marriage counselor. At parent-teacher conferences, let’s stick to Dakota’s progress, not how your husband won’t help you around the house.
3. We’re sick of standardized testing and having to “teach to the test.”
4. Kids used to go out and play after school and resolve problems on their own. Now, with computers and TV, they lack the skills to communicate. They don’t know how to get past hurt feelings without telling the teacher and having her fix it.
5. When I hear a loud belch, I remember that a student’s manners are a reflection of his parents’.
6. Your child may be the center of your universe, but I have to share mine with 25 others.
7. Please help us by turning off the texting feature on your child’s phone during school hours.
8. Guys who dribble a ball for a couple of hours a game can make up to $20 million a year. We educate future leaders and make about $51,000 a year.
9. We take on the role of mother, father, psychologist, friend, and adviser every day. Plus, we’re watching for learning disabilities, issues at home, peer pressure, drug abuse, and bullying.
10. Kids dish on your secrets all the time—money, religion, politics, even Dad’s vasectomy.
11. Please, no more mugs, frames, or stuffed animals. A gift card to Starbucks or Staples would be more than enough. A thank-you note: even better.
12. We love snow days and three-day weekends as much as your kid does.
13. The students we remember are happy, respectful, and good-hearted, not necessarily the ones with the highest grades.
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
who had to make
a basket for the game night,
Seriously, the school year is in full swing and so starts the school wide social/fundraising events. Some schools host auctions and each class is responsible for a basket, our school hosts BINGO night. It's a great event and families really enjoy it together! At our school each class is responsible for donating a themed basket that will be awarded to a lucky BINGO winner. They try to keep the value of the baskets the same - usually around $15. The PTA assigns a gender so that they don't end up with 50 Hannah Montana baskets. Below is a picture of the basket I did a few years ago. It was a reading/writing basket theme for a 1st grade boy.
Here is a Fancy Nancy basket I did for a Kindergarten girl theme:
- Reading/Writing Basket- I usually pick up a few books for the gender/age I've been assigned and then I ask parents to send in anything that's reading/writing related, children magazine subscriptions, such as pencils, book marks, timer, notepads, stickers, you get the picture.
- Water Basket - Right now there are tons of summer items on clearance but it's still so hot outside. Ask parents to send in any items related to summer or water activities like water guns, floats, beach ball, slip-n-slide, sprinkler, etc.
- Craft Basket - This would include small craft kits (you can usually find some in the dollar section at Target or Micheal's) , paper, stamps, stickers, glue, coloring books, patterned scissors, crayons, markers.
- Art Basket - Pick up a small canvas, paint brushes, paint, and a book about how to paint or famous artists.
- Movie Night Basket - Pick up a popular children's movie (or a blockbuster card or movie theater tickets) and ask parents to send in a popcorn, candy, a popcorn bucket/container to display it in and anything related to that movie (like books, stickers, pencils, t-shirts).
- Drive Through Basket - Ask parents to send in $5 gift cards to local fast food restaurants.
- I-Scream/ You Scream/Ice Cream Basket - Pick up a coupon book or a small gift card to Bruster's, get a cute sundae set or small bowls, an ice cream scoop, toppings, sprinkles, cones etc.
- Snow Cone Basket - Pick up an inexpensive snow cone machine or kit and ask parents too send in syrups, snow cone cups, silly straws, etc.
- Game Basket- You can ask each child to send in a small inexpensive game, there are lots of card games under $5, board games, hand held games, domino's, jacks, etc.
- Picture Perfect - Get a disposable camera and then a small scrapbook, stickers, paper,and other items to crop the photos and fill the scrapbook.
- FAME Basket - This would be a basket centered around a certain character (like Hannah Montana, Spiderman), famous person (a musician, sports icon) or a show (Phineas & Ferb, Transformers). Parents would just send in anything that has to do with that character or show - notebooks, pencils, t-shirts, posters, DVD's, CD's, games, etc.
- Science Basket - Ask parents to send in anything science related including books, experiment kits, magnifying glass, microscope, telescope, etc. - you could take this a step further and specify a certain science theme Astronomy, Chemistry, Geology, Biology.
- Gardening Basket - You could include a child gardening book, gloves, spade, rake, shovel, terracotta pots, seeds, etc.
- Cooking Basket - Include a children's cookbook, apron, measuring spoons, measuring cups, rolling pin, etc.
- Backyard-Again Basket - You can include sidewalk chalk, jump rope, kickball, really anything for the backyard or outside.
- Travel Basket - This would include a travel pillow, travel games, a lap pad and anything else kids might use in the car.
- Accessories Basket - You could include hair bows, head bands, jewelry, SILLY BANDZ.
- Sports Basket - You can choose a specific sport such as baseball, football, basketball and ask parents to send in any item related to that sport, like trading cards, water bottle, a book about that sport, any of the equipment from that sport, stickers, pencils, etc.
- Team Basket - Choose a specific team, like a college team, a high school team or a professional team and ask parents to send in anything that is that team theme related, shirts, pictures, magnets, notepads, stickers, etc.
- Music Basket - Ask parents to send in items related to music, books, inexpensive instruments (like recorder, harmonica, tamborine), lessons if you know someone that could give lessons.
- Sewing Basket - A book about sewing, a sewing kit, fabric, thread, needles, sewing box, etc.
- Knitting Basket - A book about knitting or a kit, yarn, knitting needles, etc.
- Camp Basket - Pick up a child's tent and ask parents to send in items related to camping, a smore's set, campfire skewers, flashlight, bug spray, etc.
- Puzzle Basket - Ask parents to send in all kinds of puzzles, including piece puzzles, word puzzles, word searches, suduko, etc.
- Animal Basket - You could include tickets to the local petting zoo, books about animals, animal SILLY BANDZ, sticks, etc.
Below is the letter that I send out each year to get the parents on board. Feel free to cut and paste and edit it for your use, any of the words in italics should be replaced with your class specific information!
BINGO Basket Letter
Each year the SCHOOL NAME hosts a BINGO Night. This year’s BINGO Night will be held on DATE. It’s a great event for the children and helps raise money for our school. Each class is responsible for drinks and for putting together a themed basket that is then awarded as a prize to a BINGO winner.
Our class will provide two 12 packs of SODA and a THEME basket for a GENDER. Please send in a small item appropriate for this basket – some ideas might be LIST ITEMS THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO SEE IN THE BASKET! You may also choose to send in a small money contribution in lieu of an item for the basket. All items for the basket must be received by DUE DATE. If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact your room mom, YOUR NAME, by e-mail at YOUR E-MAIL or by phone YOUR PHONE NUMBER.