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August 3, 2012

Some More Great Ideas in Pictures

Great Ideas in PicturesGreat Ideas in Pictures

Great Ideas in Pictures

This should be the last of the ideas that I wanted to share with you from the wonderful I Teach K! conference in Las Vegas!  Plus, there are a few more ideas that I picked up in Missouri last week at the SDE Kindergarten Conference there!  (I was also at the wonderful Alabama Kindergarten Association Conference, but I was presenting all day and didn’t get to attend any sessions at that one, unfortunately!)  And now, I JUST got back today from presenting at the Texas Region 8 ESC Pre-K Institute!  Busy, busy, busy! (There are some pictures of my trip at the end of this post, if you would like to see how beautiful Texas is at this time of year!
If you would like to see where I will be presenting next, please click here!  My next stop will be the Wisconsin Kindergarten Association in October, 2012!

Bowling Alley Subtraction

This looked like a fun activity for some active children- especially boys!  It is a little bowling alley!  The children bowl to see how many pins they can knock down, and subtract that many from the total.  It came from

Numbers in Order Links

This idea is from Julie Brinkley’s session!  She took some number cards and punched holes in them, making the holes big enough for the links to go through.  The children are supposed to link them up in order.


This is a neat idea that I picked up in a session by Pat Pavelka, one of SDE’s presenters!  I may not have all of the details of this activity exactly right because I came into the session late, but here it goes:  she said that every Monday morning when she writes the morning message, she types it up and copies it for the kids.  Then they do activities with it.  They highlight the sight words or word families that they are learning on day one, and then on day two, they cut the sentences apart and put them back in order.  On day three, they cut the sentences into words, and then try to rebuild the whole thing.  (I know that there was more to it, but evidently, I don’t take very good notes!)  She also said that she saves the morning messages each week in manilla envelopes with the message taped to the outside.  The children can go back to them and try to rebuild them later in the year.  Pat said that the children really learn a LOT from this activity!


Have you ever wished for extra fingers when doing finger plays or songs with your students?  Here’s a neat solution:  it’s the “Finger Puppet Hand Stand” from  They were exhibiting at I Teach K! and I noticed the finger puppet stand there.  It looked like a great way to display the finger puppets, but then they told me that people use them to actually help TELL the story as well!


This is how Vanessa Levin of Pre-K pages gives her children their own personal word walls:  she puts them into their writing notebooks.  Each child gets a page with the alphabet on it and some blank boxes.  When they ask her to spell a word, she writes it on their personal word wall.

“Border Books!”

These are “Border Books” that I found at a vendor’s booth at the Missouri Kindergarten Conference!  The exhibitor from took some borders and then added some other decorations that were sold in bulletin board kits and that sort of thing.  Then she put them together and made books out of them, binding them with rings on the side and laminating them, of course!  They were soooo cute! They have a lot of these little books in “kits” that you can buy right off of their website, too!  The kits have just what you need to make the books yourself.


Above is a picture of what I think is a book made out of a bulletin board kit!  This is one of those ideas that, when I see it displayed, make the creative juices within me just begin FLOWING!  What could you do with all of the available bulletin board kits out there?  What could I do with existing bulletin board kits that I am not really using?????  This was another great idea from


This is a manual that tells you how to make the different border books!  There were four different manuals available, as I recall.  This picture also was taken at the booth from; however, the last time I checked, they were still working on getting this particular product up on their website.  So if you don’t find it today, try back in a few days, or email them.

Despite the fact that those Make It Border Books were not for sale online, they really did have quite a lot of their kits for sale.


Above you see pictures that I took of a Popcorn Counting Book that had on display at the Missouri conference as well!  I loved the way it was interactive; you can take the numbers on and off and match them to the correct number of stickers on the book.

And now I have just one last thought to leave you with:

I saw this sign in a gift shop and just HAD to snap a picture!  Love it!

Here’s a shout out to all of my new friends that I met at the Pre-K Institute in Mt. Pleasant, TX:  Thanks for having me come and visit for a day!  I enjoyed being there and meeting you, and getting to see another part of our beautiful country.  And here are some quick photos of your state.  I was pleasantly surprised at how lush and green some parts of Mt Pleasant were!  The top photo was taken in Mt. Pleasant.  I snapped the rest of them during the drive back to Dallas.



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