Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Poetry Journals

For the past couple years I've used poetry journals in my classroom. Shannon from Kindergarten Hoppenings has an amazing post that explains how she uses them and how you can make them matter in your classroom. She also shares the poems she uses in her classroom. I love her idea of putting the poems on a poster board for students to read. I plan on using a lot of her ideas this year!

I introduce one poem a week. We read the poem on the SMARTboard, practice pointing to words and highlight letters and sight words. Students read and illustrate the poem in their poetry journals.

Usually, I use a 3 prong folder that I add to all year, but with 34 kids, that gets to be time consuming. This year I plan on stapling all the poems for the month together, making a cover out of construction paper and letting them take them home at the end of the month.

Here are some of the poems I used last year. Enjoy! ♥

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


Michelle's Math in the Middle is having a Pinterest Linky party! I ♥ pinterest! I've already found tons of fabulous ideas for my classroom! Click on the red buttton in my sidebar if you want to see what I've been pining!

If you are not a familiar with pinterest, it's basically a website that lets you organize and share all the great ideas you find on the internet. You can also follow other users and see what they're pining. It's slightly addictive! Currently it's invite only, if you would like to set up an account leave your email in a comment and I'll send you an invite!

Here are a couple of things I created from my "Pinspirations":

I put my sight word cheers on popsicle sticks, thanks to a freebie from Growing Kinders. I put my popsicle sticks into a Crystal Light container and they fit perfectly!

I created a Story Map that I plan on laminating once I get back to school. I also got this idea from Growing Kinders. To create this Story Map I cut 2 1/2 inch strips of paper, 1 inch stars and and printed the polka dot titles on white paper Click here to download the words Click here to download the title

Mrs. Gilchrist's Class has a really cute activity based on Teacher Tipster's Power Towers. I'm sorry that the picture quality isn't great. It looks super-cute in person! I love this idea because I think it's really flexible. Kids can put the cups in ABC order, pull a flash card to determine which cup goes next in their tower, spell words, the possibilities are endless!

Behavior Plan Linky Party

Lesson Plan Diva is having a behavior plan linky party! This is a great idea, because I'm always looking for new ways to manage classroom behavior.

My school has a card flipping system. Everyone starts on blue each morning and they flip cards for not following the rules. I'm a softy and I give several warnings before I flip to red, sometimes I might "tip" the child's card a little out of the pocket to let them know they're very close to being flipped. This year I want to try the clip chart system , I like that you can move the clips for positive reasons. I just don't know how it will work with 36 students! (that's ALOT of clips!) :) These are our colors:
Blue - great day Red- warningOrange - timeoutGreen - parent contactYellow - referral
Each day I circle the color on the communication log with the a marker and write a quick note if necessary. If a student gets blue all week he/she will get treasure box!

Click here to download the form in pdf format
Click here to download the form in word format

I didn't need this form this year, but in the past, if I had a student with behavior problems I would have the child fill out a good choices/bad choices form so we could discuss what he/she did wrong and right that day. I like that it doesn't focus only on the negative and it gives me an opportunity to discuss what he/she can do differently.
Click here to download this form in pdf format
Click here to download this form in excel format

Monday, July 25, 2011

♥ New Blog Design! ♥

Yay! I have 50 followers! To celebrate I talked my hubby into letting me buy a super-cute blog template from Ladybug Teaching Resources! Kristen is amazing and installed it for me within 24 hours! I also changed my blog name from Kinderlicious to Aloha Kindergarten to go with the tropical theme. I ♥ it! What do you think?

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Which animal would you be?

When I was an intern, my directing teacher did a really cute icebreaker activity. She had a group of animals that she reviewed and discussed with her students. Then she asked, "if you were an animal, which animal would you be?" The students each picked an animal card, colored it and wrote his/her name on it. They took turns explaining which animal they would be and why and then added their card to a graph.

I really liked this activity so I decided to make my own version. I don't plan on using all these animals, I think 18 choices would overwhelm the kids, I just couldn't decide which animals I wanted to use! I also couldn't decide if I wanted to print colored cards (to save time) or allow the kids to color the cards on their own, so I made both! Enjoy! :)

Click the pictures to download the activity.

If you decide to download this activity, leave me a message so I know you enjoyed it! :)

Friday, July 15, 2011

We Give Books

Tech for Kinders has an awesome link for a website called We Give Books. This website has free books online and will donate a book to a charity each time you read one. Check them out by clicking the logo below!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Mrs. Goo-bee-knee

Raise your hand if you have a difficult last name!

I do! My last name is Gubbini and at the beginning of each year parents and kids have a hard time learning my name. It really doesn't bother me, I'll honestly answer to anything, even my co-teacher's name! All of their different names for me are really cute! My favorites are Mrs. Beanie and Mrs. Genie. This year I made a little sign to help people out. I think I might print it on labels to go home on my beginning of the year postcard. Leave me a comment and let me know what you think!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Classroom Labels

My class loves to read the room. I like to make sure I have tons of labels and writing around the room for them to explore. This is the set of labels I begin with at the beginning of the year. The child of the day picks a few labels from a basket and the class uses their picture clues and beginning sounds to figure out what the label says. Then they decide where it should go.

Grade Level Linky Party

Kim from The Teacher's Lane is having a grade level linky party! What a great idea! Go check it out!Link

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Bulletin Board Linky Party

Sunny Days in Second Grade is having a bulletin board party. I LOVE creative bulletin boards, so I can't resist in joining in on the party!

My favorite board last year was the Chicka Chicka Boom Boom welcome board. The smaller letters have student names on them. Parents enjoyed finding their child's name on the palm tree. In September my co-teacher and I took off some of the bigger letters and the part that says, "Welcome to Your New Room" and added student work.

Behavior Bingo

I love to use positive reinforcement in the classroom! One way I reward the class is with Behavior Bingo. When the class gets a compliment or I notice everyone is on task, a student picks a number out of a basket and puts a sticker on it. Once the class gets a row or column they get a reward (i.e. popsicle or popcorn & movie). We start out the year with 30 numbers but by the end of the year we use 100 numbers. Click the picture to download the file.

Monday, July 11, 2011


Last year, my school started using CHAMPs as a school-wide proactive and positive approach to classroom management. For those of you that haven't heard of CHAMPs, it stands for:

  • Conversation - can students talk during this activity?
  • Help -how can students get assistance during this activity?
  • Activity - what are students doing?
  • Movement - can students move during the activity?
  • Participation - what does active participation look like?

Here is an example of common settings in our classroom. Sorry the picture is so small, click it to enlarge it. (click to download a copy in b&w)

We update and review our CHAMPs chart at the beginning of each lesson to review behavioral expectations. I really like that the expectations are clearly stated at the beginning of the lesson, because at this age many of them need the reminder.

To create my CHAMPs board, I printed out pictures, backed them with colored card stock and mounted them onto magnets so I could use them on my white board. After a couple of weeks the kids really get a hang of the chart and the Child of the Day updates it. The kids will even remind me if I forget to update it! :) Here is a picture of our CHAMPs chart.

Do you use CHAMPs? How do you utilize it in your classroom?

Daily Schedule Linky Party

Becca from Simply Second is having a daily schedule linky party. I love this idea! I think it's really interesting to see how people fit everything into the day. This is my schedule from last year. It really worked well for me and my co-teacher. Hopefully it will stay the same!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Sounds Like Fun!

I love music! Like many other kindergarten classrooms we sing and dance as much as we can! One of the songs we use in the beginning of the year is called Alphabet Sounds by Barbara Milne. I like the song because it's really mellow and the kids do hand motions for each sound so it keeps them active. We start out the year learning this song as a group on a PowerPoint presentation. Click the picture below to download the PowerPoint I like to call these presentations Musical PowerPoints. I got the idea from Kelly at Kelly's Kindergarten. The slide transitions are already programmed in with the song so all you have to do is start the slideshow. Due to copyright issues, I have deleted the song, if you have or buy a copy of the song you can easily reinsert the music by following the directions on Kelly's website.

I also made a little book that they keep in their independent reading bags. The kids love to read the book with the song. Click here to download the book.

We also play a matching game and it eventually becomes a center after we've played it several times as a class

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

I ♥ Fonts!

Jenn at Finally in First is hosting a favorite fonts linky party. I LOVE fonts, and I'm thrilled she's hosting this linky party, because that means I get to find more fabulous fonts AND I'm not alone in my obsession! I have so many fonts, it was hard to pick my favorites.

Most of these fonts are free and can be found via google. Let me know if you have trouble finding a font you want! :)

Tuesday, July 5, 2011


As part of our district-wide Houghton-Mifflin curriculum, we use Alphafriends to help learn letters and sounds. Each Alphafriend has it's own catchy song. They remind me of the letter people! The kids really love them and they'll ask for certain songs over and over again.

I made a SMARTboard file with each Alphafriend and the words to his/her song. We use this file at the beginning of the year during skills block to highlight letters and practice pointing from left to right.

To use this file, you will need a SMARTboard and the Notebook software. It would also help to have the font, Primer Print loaded onto your computer. Primer Print is a free font available at