Friday, December 9, 2011

A Little Q&A, Christmas in My Classroom, & GRINCH DAY!!!

I’ve recently had A LOT of people email me asking a couple of things. Just incase y’all are wondering too, I thought I’d write about it here!

Q: “What kind of camera do you use?”

A: I shoot with a Nikon D700 {IN.LOVE} and also have a Nikon D90 {also in love}. The D700 is a full frame camera and the D90 is a crop sensor. If you’re just looking for a DSLR to take better pictures than your regular ol’ point & shoot, you’ll want a crop sensor…you won’t need to go full frame. I’m 100% a Nikon girl, but both Canon & Nikon make EXCELLENT cameras. I would HIGHLY suggest you visit your local camera shop and hold BOTH in your hands. Sometimes one just *feels* better than another. Most DSLRs come with a kit lens {typically an 18-55mm lens}. I would suggest adding a prime{fixed} lens to your shopping cart OR just buying the camera body{no kit lens} and a lens. I LOVE my 50mm 1.4 {amazing prime lens!!!}. The 35mm 1.8 {prime} is also amazing and if you want something that zooms, go for the Tamron 28-75mm…super versatile & produces some pretty fantastic images. Instead of pulling your camera out of the box and just turning it on Auto, I *HIGHLY* recommend learning how to shoot in manual!!!! It’s a definite learning curve, but I’ve been shooting manual for 2 years now and the quality of my pictures are SO much better!!! I can’t imagine going back to auto!

Q: “Where did you get those plates that you used for ‘There’s Snow Place Like Home’ Christmas gifts?”

A: If you’re wondering what this question is all about, read about it HERE. Y’all. These plates came from the DOLLAR TREE!!!!!!!!!! TRUE story!!!! Talk about inexpensive!!! We painted the plates with regular ol’ acrylic paints, wrote the words in sharpie markers, and then sealed it with a clear, acrylic sealant. Cheap, easy, and CUTE!!!!!

Now I’ll go ahead and leave the comments open for more questions. If you’ve got anything you wanna ask…ANYTHING at all…just leave it in the comments and I’ll answer them in a post on Sunday :)

Christmas is in FULL swing in my classroom, so I thought I’d give y’all a little peek. It’s nothing spectacular, but it’s really beginning to look a lot like *Christmas* {cue the music}. We’re only in school for 3 weeks between Thanksgiving break and Christmas break, so it’s hard for us to do *too much*. Sweet Rachelle over at What the Teacher Wants was telling me she’s in school up until the week before Christmas. How many of y’all do the same thing!?!?! CRAZY!!!

You might remember these mice from the activity I made last year. I’ve been doing a “If You Take a Mouse to the Movies” unit since I taught Kindergarten and I love it more and more every year!

The writing prompt was, “If you take me to the movies, I will ask you for some…”


I made the template for the mice last year, but I haven’t scanned them, so I don’t have them for you!!! Sorry!!! If you want to read more about the activities I do for this little unit, you can check it out HERE. I didn’t take any pictures of our mouse day this year…I left my dang camera at home! You can also find more printables and activity ideas!!

You might remember these little Santas from last year. We made them again, only this time we switched out the color page of bricks for some brick themed scrapbook paper! MUCH cuter ;) I actually saw this idea in my TL’s classroom and thought it was super cute and I wanted to add a little flair to ours, too! We did this little craftivity as an extension to reading the book, “Santa’s Stuck”. The writing prompt was, “If Santa got stuck in my chimney, I would…” We brainstormed lots of ideas and some of them were downright clever. LOVE the way their little minds work!!


As soon as we got back from Thanksgiving break, we made these little scrapbook Santas {similar to last years}. I basically just set out a ton of Christmas themed scrapbook paper, my own sample, and then they went to town creating their own. LOVE how different they all turned out!!!


I also had the kids fill out an elf application. I told them I was sending it straight to the North Pole. You should’ve seen their faces. Ohmiword. I’ll tell you what, though…they sure did take their time and do their BEST work!! HA!!! We did this activity last year and this year I tweaked the elf just a bit. They came out A LOT bigger than I was anticipating, but they still turned out pretty darn cute ;) If you want to download the elf application, you can find it HERE.


We had a “Mooseltoe” day this past week and it was SO much fun!!! The kids adored the book and we were engaged in some pretty fun activities all day. We even made “Moose Munch”!! {Chex cereal, chocolate chips, and pretzels} FUN!!! All of the activities we did came from my little Mooseltoe unit. The kids LOVED it!!


We celebrated *Grinch Day* yesterday and had a blast! The kids were SO excited!! Most of our firsties came to school dressed in green and wearing Santa hats. Kinda precious. The teachers joined in the fun, too!


{Just incase you’re wondering, the shirts came from Wal Mart…$7.50!!!!}

We had our first annual Grinch Day last year {you can read about it HERE}. I really didn’t do much different this year, just added a *few* new things. I found the idea for this next little writing craftivity HERE. LOVED the style of the Grinch, so I went ahead and made my own template. {I used a little paper punch for the white on the hat.} The writing prompt for this craftivity was, “I feel like a Grinch when…” The writing on the right says, “when I’m sassy to my sister.” HA!! LOVE that!!!


We made Grinch Punch/Seuss Juice {sprite & lime sherbet} and the kids LOVED it. Another idea that my TL had was to make Who Pudding {vanilla pudding with green food coloring}. We didn’t get around to that though…it was a BUSY day!!!!

We brainstormed some *Grinchy Adjectives* to describe the Grinch and then followed it up with a little simile writing.



We finished up the day watching the classic, cartoon version of The Grinch and then passed out Grinch licked candy canes! HA!! One of my sweeties was VERY concerned that they were really licked, so I spent the better part of dismissal trying to convince him that they weren’t! Bless his heart!!


If you want to download the tag, you can find it HERE. I found the candy canes at Target, but I know most places carry them. They’re the Starburst brand….they come 12 to a pack…6 red/6 green.

Okay…that was a massive update. Kudos to you if you’ve made it this far! HA!

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