Wednesday, December 17, 2014


I wanted to pop in and share my quick, easy, and inexpensive parent gifts from this year. 

I bought the tile from Home Depot for about 15 cents a piece. I used red and green acrylic paint from Michaels for the kids to make fingerprint polka dots or lights {I let them choose which one they wanted to do}. My kiddos added the writing with a Sharpie. Then, we sprayed the tile with clear lacquer. This year I have one sweetie that is a Jehovah's Witness. For her, I let her turn her fingerprints into ladybugs so that she could still participate. I think they all turned out so super cute!

Today I finished wrapping the last of the tiles so that my kiddos could take them home after our class holiday party. I'm one of those people who likes to buy different wrapping paper every year, so I used  my leftover wrapping paper, bows, and tags from a couple of years ago on this project. Don't you just love when you can get extra use out of something you don't use anymore!

My school's focus this year is on improving writing instruction across the curriculum. One thing we have been encouraged to implement in our classroom is Writing Workshop. While I do love using it in my classroom, I often find that the one component that is the most difficult for me to keep up with is the closing. Silly I know, but by the end of writing I always feel like I am out of time and, while I know how valuable the closing to a lesson is, it's the one thing that I find myself leaving out. Does anyone else struggle with fitting it all in too? When I do manage to remember the closing, I choose two students who were working really hard to present their writing in our "Share Chair". Really it's just my chair that I usually sit in during read alouds, so they are always excited to be able to sit in the teacher's chair. I give them these visors to wear while they share to add to the novelty. When they finish reading their writing, the class gives them two glows {compliments} and a grow {a way to improve}. 

For Christmas, I used a reindeer visor that I found at Home Depot for our Share Chair. Oh the cuteness! I hope to find more for other seasons/holidays too!

What do you do to add novelty into your lessons?


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