Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Fourth of July and Paper Quilting {Part 2}

This is the second step of the Make a Flag Quilt Block activity. See yesterday's post for the first steps.

Use acrylic or tempera paint to embellish the flags. Dots are made with painted bubble wrap. Lines are made with painted corrugated paper. {Thanks for the tip, Jane!}

Now it's time to display them in your classroom!

*It's fun to have the students help with the placement of the blocks. 

Click on the picture to download a FREE pattern with directions.

Graphics by KPM Doodles

Use this activity for Fourth of July, Veteran's Day, President's Day, Memorial Day, or Flag Day. I would love to see any flag quilt blocks you make. Have fun with the red, white, and blue.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Fourth of July and Paper Quilting {Part 1}

It's a beautiful summer day today, and I'm thoroughly enjoying my summer vacation. I hope you're enjoying yours, too!

With Fourth of July around the corner, flags and red, white, and blue are everywhere!

{red + white + blue = my favorite color combination; RED = my favorite color!}

I have a FLAG quilt that I like to display during the summer. These are two of the flag blocks:

I am fascinated by quilts - I not only enjoy making them, but I also appreciate the art and history behind them. I love how quilting involves both math and art.

My students make paper quilt blocks during the year. It's a great way to reinforce math skills such as geometry, spatial relationships, and measurement.

One of the books I use is Quilting Through the Year by Paula Symonds.

Each paper quilt starts with a mathematics lesson.

All this red, white, and blue inspired me to put together a "Make a Flag Quilt Block" activity for children that can be used for Fourth of July or other Patriotic holidays and units.

I started with these supplies:

an assortment of scrapbook paper or construction paper

acrylic paints, star stamps, brushes, corrugated paper, bubble wrap, and glue

First steps: cut paper squares, glue to pattern, and apply stickers

Examples of the first steps:

I was definitely inspired by my flag quilt. I'm waiting for paint to dry. I'll show you the next step in Fourth of July and Paper Quilting {Part 2} (tomorrow).

If you're interested in more Fourth of July activities, click on the picture for All About Fourth of July literacy activities.
Enjoy your evening,

Saturday, June 9, 2012

The School Year Ends

Well, the last day of school has come and gone. The last week was a four day week. We had three play performances and two half days, so our last week of school flew by. A last week countdown and lots of anticipation filled our last days. I had a parent tell me that her daughter could hardly sleep the night before. She was so excited about the last day of school!

The last day . . .

We started by cleaning out desks and putting books and materials away.

And then Autograph Book signing began.

Graphics and Fonts by KPM Doodles, Fancy Dog Studio, and Miss Tiina Fonts

But, not before my last mini-lesson of the year: "What to Write in an Autograph Book." First graders get excited about the idea of an autograph book, but aren't quite sure what to do with it.

We brainstormed ideas and posted them on the board.

And then the FUN began . . . lots of chatter, giggling, commenting, writing, and SINGING!  {"Goin' Buggy" play music in the background}

Click on the picture for a video link to hear the music. 

We said our final good-byes and off they went with the anticipation of summer. 

It's always bittersweet. I'm sure it's true of all grades, but it seems that first graders grow so much in a school year's time. It's a proud moment to send them off to second grade, but the groups of children are always missed. 

The teachers' last day was also on Thursday. But, I have yet to figure out how to clean the room for the summer by the last day that the children leave.

I go back for a couple of days after the children are gone and begin cleaning and organizing for next year. It's a good time to reflect on last year and think about changes for next year. I was at school yesterday and even saw a couple of second grade teachers in the workroom already running things off in preparation for next year. I'm not quite there yet.

So, it's officially summer break for me!

Graphic by Scrappin Doodles

I hope you're enjoying your summer.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Favorite FONTS

Today I'm joining Natalie from Teachery Tidbits for a FONTS LINKY PARTY.

Graphics by The 3 AM Teacher

I have quite a collection and love having lots of choices! These are my top FAVORITES:

MTF Jumpin' Jack {Miss Tiina Fonts} and A Truer Blue {Kevin and Amanda} are bold and perfect to use for headings.

I like fonts that can be easily read by first graders. 

My all time favorite . . .  

                 CK Handprint {}. 

It can be used for just about anything. I almost ALWAYS used it until I found 

                 Doodle Basic and Doodle Tipsy {Letter Delights}.

Both are great to use for parent letters and primary worksheets.

My most recent finds: 

                 Architect's Daughter {


                 Love Ya Like A Sister {}.

And Pea Missy With A Marker {Kevin and Amanda Fonts} is great to use for highlighted words.

Have fun clicking on the links!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

June Activities

It's hard to believe, but we only have 4 days left of school!

The first graders at our school finish the year by performing a BUG play called, "Goin' Buggy." We have 3 performances this coming week. The first performance is on Monday and is our dress rehearsal. One word that will surely describe the atmosphere next week is EXCITEMENT!

I know that some schools continue through most of June. Some schools are year-round. And others have summer school. So, here are some materials that can be used in June and throughout the summer.

I created a packet of literacy activities that would commemorate Flag Day, which is celebrated on June 14th.

Graphics by KPM Doodles and Scrappin Doodles.

The packet includes: writing activities, drawing, Flag Day posters, and a Flag Day book that children complete.

We definitely want our students to continue their math practice during the summer, too. Here are two packets of addition and subtraction story problems.

Graphics by KPM Doodles.

Different problem types and sets of numbers are used. The problems have a "beachy" theme.

Thinking ahead to summer!

Enjoy the week ahead (and the rest of Sunday)!