Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Dear Santa, Love, Rachel Rosenstein Book Giveaway

Happy Holidays, Everyone! I am delighted to partner up with Penguin Random House to give you this opportunity to win two copies of Dear Santa, Love, Rachel Rosenstein written by Amanda Peet, and Andrea Troyer, with illustrations by Christine Davenier.

Dear Santa, Love, Rachel Rosenstein is a sweet story about a young Jewish girl who absolutely loves Christmas and wants nothing more than for Santa to come visit her house. While she may not get what she wishes for, there is a happy ending. We're talking serious cuteness!

A little background on the folks behind the book:

Amanda Peet is an actress and playwright. Her first play, "The Commons of Pensacola," starring Blythe Danner and Sarah Jessica Parker, opened to critical acclaim in 2014 at Manhattan Theater Club. A native of New York, Peet graduated from Columbia University with a degree in American History. She has appeared in numerous films, including "Please Give," "Syriana," "Something's Gotta Give," and "The Whole Nine Yards." She also starred in the TV series "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip," and the Broadway revival of Neil Simon's "Barefoot in the Park." Peet stars in a new comedy series, "Togetherness" for HBO, debuting in fall 2014.

Andrea Troyer grew up in Minnesota and received an MFA from the University of California, Irvine. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and two young boys.

Christine Davenier is the illustrator of many children's books, including Julie Andrews's "The Very Fairy Princess" series. She lives in Paris, France.

Here comes the giveaway part:

Come together with friends celebrating different holidays! One winner will receive 2 copies of Dear Santa, Love, Rachel Rosenstein, one to keep, and one to share.

To receive two copies of Dear Santa, Love, Rachel Rosenstein leave a comment here, like our Facebook Page, or follow me on Instagram and leave a comment on the post. A winner will be selected at random and announced on Wednesday, December 2nd.

**Giveaway open to US addresses only. Prizing and samples provided by Penguin Random House.
#RachelRosenstein #XmasEnvy #ad

Sunday, November 8, 2015

vehicle match with free printable

Howdy! Last spring I purchased two packs of toy cars with the intention of making a matching game that never happened. Flash forward to the new school year and a burst of creative energy and I have a freebie for you!
use folded scrapbook paper for a background
a piece of tape stages where to place each vehicle
tiny vehicles!
The cars came from T.J. Maxx and were $2.99 each (for a pack of five). Score! I created a mini photo studio by placing the vehicles on two different colors of textured scrapbook paper near a natural light source. Before printing, I upped the brightness and saturation of the photos and cropped them for a tighter visual. I then used PicMonkey to add two pictures to one photo so that the finished size would be about the size of a business card. Photos were printed at a photo kiosk, cut by hand, and then laminated by me.
To set up, I popped the vehicles into a small basket and set out the cards. I was interested to see what the children would do.
Turns out, they did exactly what I intended, along with some hoarding and some playing. For an added bonus, I demonstrated how the cars moved when you pulled them back a little and released them. The children soon found out that if you pulled back for too long the car would break. No worries though, they were still able to match 'em up!
For clean up, the cars were returned to the basket along with the cars. When we were looking for the cars, we played the matching game to discover which cars were missing and then used the card to identify the runaway! The children loved it!

I can't sell you a pack of cars but I can offer up access to the cards. Save as a PDF and print put two copies of each photo and you have an instant matching game! Enjoy! (Let me know if you are having any issues)

Vehicle Match Printable from scrumdilly-do!

Friday, November 6, 2015

classroom activities for: The Quilt

One of our favorite books that we revisit every year is The Quilt by Anne Jonas. I've had a lot of fun over the years coming up with different activities that focus on squares and/or sewing. Some are a hit and some are a miss. Last year we did a month-long study on the Women of Gee's Bend and I am kicking myself over the photos I did not take! They may be there but I cannot find them at this time. We just finished up our week of The Quilt and so while it was on my mind, I thought I would share some of the activities we have done over the years.
small quilt tiles on a grid
paper quilt at the art table
Learning Resources Parquetry Blocks
cubed desk set
paper shapes and frame
sewing notion Discovery Bottle
tiny spools of thread and laces
felt and fabric for our felt board
shape tiles and picture frame
Guidecraft Nesting Cubes
Buttons and sorting mat
Laminated Stained Glass Coloring Pages for the Light Table
CP Toys Bristle Building Cubes

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

what's in the mystery bag: elmer

I have to admit I have no idea where the mystery bag is right now but a year or so ago, I was pretty constant at filling it with items relating to our story and introducing it at circle time. This week we read Elmer and dived in to all elephants all the time...I found this photo in my archives and  thought I would put it here to remind myself to find that darn mystery bag (handmade by me from this diy) and fill it up! Here's what was inside:

*handmade Elmer beanbag
*Elmer domino
*elephant beads from a Jungle Animal Pack
*squares of color (red & green)
*animal flash cards, the Elephant is from this set and lists facts on the back

Sunday, October 18, 2015

centers: the mixed-up chameleon

color mixing at the light table
color sorting
animal mix-up color forms

animal block puzzle and nesting boxes
circus mix-up cards illustrated by Chris Raschka

Friday, October 9, 2015

how about them apples?

napkins and napkin rings
apple scented play dough and apple leaves
small acrylic apple gems and an apple ice tray
apple scented rice
wee apples and tongs
play apple pie with cinnamon scented cotton balls

Friday, September 18, 2015

it's all in the details...

our fine motor shelf ready to motor!
We're spending a few weeks reading books on trains and trucks. The library corner is stocked with books, we have an awesome thrifted wooden train and car set on our building table, and the shelves around the room are filled with activities centered around shapes and things that go. Here's a peek!
This is our Math Shelf.  It consists of two Ikea cabinets with the doors and extra shelves removed. We aim to keep it simple by placing one basket or tray of manipulatives for exploration on each shelf. We have been exploring shapes and colors in the room so our Math Shelf is full of happy shapes and colors. On the top shelf we have a basket of pattern blocks along with a book on shapes, and our cylinder stackers from Guidecraft* (via Zulily). On the bottom shelves we have a basket of Magformers*, and a basket of rainbow cubes.  During the week, the children bring the baskets to different areas to the classroom to explore. When they are finished and it is time to clean up, the fill the baskets and return them to the shelves (or any surface they think will suffice).
The felt train was made to go along with the book Freight Train* by Donald Crews. I did a big ol' eye batting at the mister to get him to draw me the template for these pieces. I have them somewhere in a file and when I find them I will scan them in so you can use them as well if you are interested. I introduce the pieces as I read the story. We then work on sorting our vehicle counters* as a group on our circle time rug. Later in the week, these felt pieces are moved all over the classroom and used in various ways. The counters too are used all over the room. While I set up the investigation on our Math table, I do not fret when the children decide to use them elsewhere. The table is a bit tall for them and they prefer to use the floor for the most part. 

On the art table I have set out tickets, hole punches, and crayons in a truck shaped container. The children spent the week making ticket collages and creating their own train tickets. We have an art shelf as well full of paper, glue, crayons, and markers. Next to the art shelf and table is our easel for painting. 

We have two waterfall style bookcases in our reading area. I hit up the public library every two weeks for books that fit various themes. here we have all things transportation. I want to write more about the books but am not sure if anyone is interested enough. 
Finally we have our fine motor shelf, which is a Kallax shelf from Ikea (the entire shelf can be seen in the top photo of this post). Here we have shape connectors, transportation lacing beads* (I picked these up from Target), a thrifted peg board, and gears from Plan Toys*. In front of our shelf is a coffee table that the kiddos bring the baskets down to for exploring. 

So there ya go! More details on what I use in my classroom and how we set it up. The baskets are all thrifted and we have a cabinet in the classroom where we stack up the unused baskets. I'm a basket hoarder and my teaching partner is not so we agreed that if it doesn't fit in the cabinet it goes! Thank goodness they stack so nicely! 

*all Amazon links are affiliated with my school, just so ya know. Thank you!