Sunday, October 30, 2011


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"G" Week and Community Helpers Part 2

This past week literally flew by!  Our entire week was jam-packed with more community helper visitors!  All-in-all we had 6 visitors this week!  They were all wonderful too!  Let's get our week in review started off with our Marvelous Monday fun!  The very first thing the students found as they walked into my class on Monday morning was what turned out to be one of our favorite "G" words . . . .

One of the new teachers said that I was "brave" bringing it into my classroom.  Not really, to be honest, I have NO musical talent and my husband was going to give it away several years ago.  Why not let the children enjoy it!  Besides strumming on the guitar most of the day Monday, we made lovely little doctor kits.  (Here is the spot where a picture normally appears.  OPPS!  No picture, I totally forgot!  Keep reading and you may understand why!)  We also headed to our BIG Music/Spanish room for a little "Doctor/First Aid Fun"!  You see, at the beginning of each school year we are required to take a CPR/First Aid class through the American Red Cross.  GREAT idea and thankfully I have never really had to use any of the information we were taught.  The really fun part of the class is at the end when I turn into a "hoarder" and collect all the used first aid supplies!  You should see me scooping up all the bandages, slings, etc.  Other teachers used to laugh at me until they saw us doing this . . . .

That's right - we played DOCTOR!  Everyone picked a partner and started putting on bandages!  I have never seen little people have so much fun without any instructions.  We could have done this for hours!  After a while I decided that I had to join in on the fun.  
Yes, that is me!  I ended up with bandages ALL over me!  SUPER great way to work on our fine motor skills while having FUN!

We spent Tuesday talking about the Veterinarian and another Police Officer who came to visit us.  The Veterinarian brought some wonderful "pets" to show us!

Where are the puppies and kittens when you need them????  Oh well, I tried to be brave!  The children loved them!  The Veterinarian even let one of my students dress up in his "operating clothes".   
And since Reid was such a good helper, he got to KEEP the clothes. Although he told me later he would have like to keep to lizard! ;0)

We had another special visitor on Tuesday, Officer Love and Hans!
Officer Love and Hans work for the Hoover Police Department.  Hans is an ammunition dog.  There are only 2 of these dogs in the entire state of Alabama.  
He is used to detect anything from bullets to bombs!  And talk about well behaved???  WOW, my sweet puppies could take a few lessons from Hans!  Thank you Officer Love and Hans!

We also a had wonderful visit from a doctor on Tuesday!  His name was Dr. Bearden.  His son is at our school.  He is actually a Gastroenterologist (a stomach doctor!)  He let us listen to our hearts with his stethoscope!  

He was extremely patient and let everyone have a turn!  Thank you Dr. Bearden!

Wednesday was another busy, busy day!  We had a librarian and a dentist come to speak to us.  Now, normally when I hear the word "librarian" I think *yawn*, someone is going to talk to us about books.  NOT THIS TIME!  Our sweet, sweet, amazing visitor not only talked to us about books, she brought books, told us all about the Dewey decimal system and read of a wonderful book called Dewey - There's a Cat in the Library .  We absolutely loved every second of her visit!  (I'm secretly trying to figure out how to get her to come back more often!)
Thank you Mrs. Davis!

Our other special visitor Wednesday was a pediatric dentist, Dr. Miller.  Both her daughters have been at our school.  She told us about the importance of keeping our teeth clean and the proper way to do it!   
Thank you Dr. Miller!

In honor of Dr. Miller, our art project for Wednesday was a very silly smile!  
Can you see what we are painting with?  That's right, it is an old toothbrush!  A little messy, but a lot of fun!  We also had to add some teeth - 
and nothing says teeth like dried butter beans!  A great fine motor skill activity and the perfect smile!

Since most of our classes only attend school Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, we had our annual "Community Helper Day" on Thursday.  It was so much fun!  Everyone was asked to come to school dressed as their favorite community Helper.  Most of MY class arrived dressed as fire fighters.  I loved it!  Since my Dad was as fire fighter for many, many years, I love to talk about our friends the fireman!  I even surprised my class by bringing in my Dad's old helmet!  Everyone loved wearing it, especially my sweet little girly, girl.  After everyone else grew tired of wearing it, she popped it on her head.  I don't think she took it off the rest of the day.
Good 'ole #9 got some extra special loving on Thursday!
(This picture is for you Nana!)

Early Thursday morning the entire school went upstairs to the main church offices.  The staff had a big surprise waiting for us - CANDY!  We paraded around and showed off our community helper outfits and the staff filled our little treat bags with candy.  To be honest, I'm not sure who had more fun, our students or the staff.

Our sweet friend Kristin!

My best buddy, Lottie!

The Vestavia Fire Department came for their annual visit on Thursday.  By the time they arrived my class knew all about the fire department.  My favorite part of the day was when the fireman pulled out their jackets and asked us if we knew what they were called.  One of my students said, "it is your turnout gear, where is your "K" tool?"  WOW, I guess they do listen to me after all! :0)

Our art project was very simple for Thursday.  We made a wonderful little five fire fighter hand print with a poem.  

This was originally made by Tippy Toe Crafts and I found it on Pinterest (my newest addiction!)  We changed the water a little by adding sequins for a little fine motor skills work, 

and we made our fireman work at station #9!  

I really love it!

It was finally FRIDAY!  I had waited all week for this glorious day!  The entire day was spent talking about the letter "G" by holding our annual "Garbage Day"!  Yes, it was time for GARBAGE DAY 2011!  I had pretty much worked my class up into a frenzy by the time Friday arrived.  They were not disappointed!  We started with our art project made entirely out of GARBAGE!  Meet Garbage Guy Greg 

and Garbage Girl Gayle!

We had so much fun talking about each piece we glued on.  I was so surprised to hear the children when they recognized the different product packages we used.  One of the little girls recognized the Coca-cola carton and looked at me and said, "does this mean I'm READING?"  My answer, "YOU BET YOU ARE!"  She was so proud! 

Soon it was time to head to kitchen to "eat a little garbarge!"  Oh my, the look on everyone's faces!  No one was actually worried since by now they are all use to me and my craziness.  Everyone started giggling when I begin pulling all the left over goodies out of our snack cabinet and threw it into a garbage sack!
Everyone loved eating "Mrs. Karen's Garbage"!

We also had a "G" science experiment and this one was GREAT!  We talked about gas!  Here we are blowing up a balloon using gas!  
Me again!  I'm not mad, I'm excited!
My little buddy on the left just realized what
was going to happen!  
I love it when my students figure things out!

We mixed a little vinegar and baking soda into a plastic bottle, stuck on the balloon and WOW!
There goes the balloon!

I actually sent the balloon and bottle home with one of my students.  He wanted to show his Dad!  SWEET!

FINALLY, it was time (someone please turn on the theme music to the Olympics) for the GREAT GARBAGE GAMES 20111!  Let's go!  We headed to our big Music/Spanish room for the games.  First we played garbage basketball

Nice Shot!
Can you see the "ball"?
It is newspaper!

After a while we started playing garbage soccer!

We used newspaper for the ball again!

We ended our games with garbage tennis!
I really hated removing the child's face on this picture.  His expression was priceless!  We used newspaper for the tennis ball (of course) and old boxes for the rackets.   It was fun!  I am really surprised this year with my class and their ability to work together.  We are definitely a good team!

By the time everyone left on Friday afternoon we were tired.  I say "we" because I was exhausted!  It was a great two weeks talking about our friends the community helpers.  

Thanks for stopping by.  I hope you will come back next week.  We will talking about the letter "M" and our "Homes and Families"!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

"P" Week and Community Helpers

Oh my, oh my, what a week!  I feel like one of my students when I say, "it was the bestest week ever!".  Let's get started by talking about the letter "P"!  Since Halloween is just around the corner we started our week by working on our fine motor skills and painting a pumpkin!
Can you see what we are painting with?  It is a cotton swab!  We use them quite a bit when apply glue or painting.  It is a fun way to work on our fine motor skills!  The pumpkins were painted orange of course then sit to side to let dry.  The next day we added our "special" eyes, nose and happy mouths to make our very special Halloween pumpkins.  Aren't they amazing?!?!?!?

The little poem at the bottom reads:  
Just a little teacher note - As a pre-school teacher, I have to do a lot of cutting for the children.  THE CHILDREN DO USE SCISSORS, but when I do the cutting, I don't try and cut nice straight lines, there just isn't time.  So you will notice a lot our artwork has poems, titles, etc. cut with wavy lines.  It really saves time!

Another great "P" word is puzzle!  We found a HUGE puzzle and just could resist letting everyone work as a team to put it together!

It took a while but the results were very positive!

I knew ahead of time that our Friday was going to full, so we headed to the kitchen for a little cooking and science fun!  We started with by making pink and purple cookies!  Most of the girls wanted pink of course.  
 The boys turned up their noses at the color pink so we let them add a little red and blue food coloring together to make . . . .

A little science, a little cooking and a lot of yummy!

We stayed in the kitchen for another one of my favorite "P" words - playdough!  And of course it was purple!  We gave everyone a big handful of playdough and scattered some toothpicks on the table.  Let the fun begin!
I honestly think everyone could have stayed and worked on their creations for hours!  I was blown away by the creativity!

WOW!  I was proud!  We let them dry over night and everyone got to take their amazing sculptures home.

Tuesday was a really busy day for us because we started talking about our friends, the police!  This was especially special to me because one of our community helper visitors was going to be my son!  We talked all day about the police and how they were our friends.  I love to listen to my class when they start talking in our circle time.  Some of their comments are amazing.  One little guy was quick to tell me that he knew all about the  police because his Mom had a wreck.  I remembered all too well when this happened because his big sister was in my class at the time.  Anyway, he told me, in great detail, about the wreck and how the policeman made sure he and his sister were okay.  I had a "Mom Moment" as I listened because he suddenly asked me if that was my son.  SWEET! We read the wonderful book Office Buckle and Gloria by Peggy Rathmann.  After I read it everyone decided that it was wonderful and I had to read it again!  That is the sign of a really good children's book!  Our art project for Tuesday had to be special and it was.  We made a police patrol car made from shapes!

Can you find all the shapes?  We had so much fun making this!  The policeman was made with our fingerprints and so were the lights on top of the car.  We put a little poem on the final project that read

Our Wacky Wednesday came all too soon and I wanted something really different.  We were having our school pictures made so we really couldn't do anything too messy.  I think we nailed it.  Take a peek at our "Pink and Purple Penguins with Polka-dots"!  NOW THAT IS WACKY!

We spent the entire day talking about penguins and learning new and interesting penguin facts.  We even waddled like penguins everywhere we went!  It was a PERFECT day!

Thursday was our annual "Pajama Party Day"!  We've been doing this for years and every year the children get more and more excited.  This year was NO exception.  Of course we all wore our pajamas to school, some even came in a robe and slippers!  Everyone knows that a party has to have party hats so we made our own!

Right after lunch we put on our party hats and headed to the big Spanish classroom where we ate popcorn and watched the movie Kung Fu Panda.  OH WHAT FUN!
FINALLY IT WAS FRIDAY!  Not because it was the end of the week!  No!  It was the day I had waited for MY ENTIRE LIFE!  First, my sweet, sweet friend, Laura Douglas came by for a visit.  

Laura is an x-ray technologist and she showed us our bones.  Did you know that we have 206 bones in our body?  Well, we know it!  Oh, the wonderful things she showed and told us.  THANK YOU Ms Laura!
Yes, that's me on the right with my sweet friend, Ms Laura!

We headed back to our classroom to calm down (just a little).  We were right in the middle of our circle time when . . . .

my son, Police Officer Harrington arrived!

I'm not going to pretend like I wasn't excited!  HEY, it had been an entire MONTH since I had seen him!  It was time for a BIG HUG!  We spent the next 30 minutes or so talking about the police and all that they do for us.  TRUST ME, I was one proud Mom!  Here are just a few of the pictures from Friday.  (A big thank you to my friend and photographer, Tiffany Crittenden! I love everyone of the pictures!)

It was purely perfect!  
Our class ended the week with a giant Pizza Party complete with punch and pudding!  What a perfect week!  

Thanks for stopping by.  I hope you will come back again.  In the mean time, I'm going to be looking at all the pictures (again) from Friday!