Wednesday, December 30, 2015

New Year's Resolutions!


Once again, the ladies at TeachTalkInspire and My Day in K have outdone themselves and put together another amazing link up!!! 
We are so excited to participate and share our resolutions for 2016!

1. This year, we want to create more teacher friendly flipcharts for teachers.
We are fortunate enough to teach in a school where each teacher has a Promethean Board in their classroom.  Most of our "planning" time is spent formatting flipcharts with our focus skills and whole group activities to use with our students.  It helps us to stay organized during instruction, and ensures that we don't forget to cover anything! We aim to make a variety of cross-curricular flipcharts to share with other teachers to hopefully make their life a little easier. :)
2. When we started this blog, we had stars in our eyes and pledged to blog every week.  Haha. We were quite naive.  Well, life happens.  Between our families, classrooms, and all the extra work that comes with being a teacher, we were lucky to blog once a month!  And, with us both being pregnant, being on maternity leave, and having a newborn this year, it was even worse!
So, to correct this, we are sitting down and creating a REALISTIC blogging schedule for ourselves.
Fingers crossed!
3. As previously mentioned, life happens.  We get so busy with life and school, that it goes by too fast!!!  We LOVE getting together with our husbands (and now little girls), but just don't always have time.  Well, we are going to make some time! :) We are resolving to slow down and go out to dinner together once a month.  Nothing fancy, maybe McDonald's or Taco Bell if need be, but we are going to make it happen!
*By the way, have we introduced you to the Markers and Mascara mascots?
     
4.  Lastly, we are working to implement new teaching/learning strategies in our Math whole group lessons.  Our resolution is to create more focused goals for our students and to work to find/create strategies that best support them in reaching those goals.  We have been reading some research-based articles to learn more on the "best" strategies, and are so very excited to try them out with our students.  We look forward to sharing the outcome with you! *Again, fingers crossed! ;0)

We wish all of you tons and tons of happiness this 2016 year!!!  2015 was an amazing year for us and our families and we cannot wait to see what 2016 brings!  Happy New Year, Friends!


Be sure to visit the Link Up below to check out everyone's resolutions!


Sunday, November 29, 2015

An Attitude of Gratitude

Hello, Friends…long time, no see (well- long time, no blog)!

We are sorry for the lack of posts lately.  We would love to take a minute to "catch you up" on what is going on with us, Markers and Mascara, and our families!

Brooklynn returned from maternity leave and has been taking the last few weeks to get to know her students and begin to find the mommy-teacher balance.  It has taken a few weeks, but she is finally into a routine.  Ashley has been diligently working to prepare for her maternity leave.  This year, we will only work together for 13 weeks….we have never had to work without one another!  "Life changes" has been the overall theme to our year! ;0)  This is a picture of us, with two of our other teacher-friends.  Three of us will have had girls, within four months of each other!!!

This year, we have already had so much fun with all the themes and skills that have been taught.  We have taught using: Pete the Cat, Brown Bear, Classic Tales, Farm, Bats, Where the Wild Things Are, and Bear Snores On.  In the upcoming weeks, we are set to teach using: Grinch, Gingerbread and Christmas, Penguins, Space, and Dinosaurs.  We have also had big events at our school: KinderKamp,  Open House, Fall Festival, Red Ribbon Week, Homecoming, a Field Trip, and our annual Thanksgiving Feast.
Wacky-Tacky Day
Career Day - A Vet, A Teacher, A Meteorologist, A Nurse, and A ZooKeeper
 
Thanksgiving Feast - Pilgrims and Indians Style
The weather totally ruined our tradition.  Usually, we celebrate outside on picnic tables…with the few inches of rain and high winds, we had to make do on the classroom floor.  They still had an absolute blast!

In Math, our students are currently: adding to sums of ten, counting to 100, building numbers using tens and ones, and identifying all 2-D shapes.  In Reading, they know 24 sight words, are reading age-appropriate stories, working to fluently read CVC words, can give the characters, setting, and sequence the events in stories, and can isolate beginning, medial, and ending sounds in words.  In Writing, our kinders can: draw pictures, label their pictures, and can use inventive spelling and sight words to write a sentence about their pictures.  Our kiddos have been working so hard already this year.  

Like you all, we recently celebrated Thanksgiving with our families and friends.  This year our Thanksgiving was unlike any other one before.  You all know that Brooklynn just had a little girl, and that Ashley's little girl is due any day now.  This Thanksgiving, we enjoyed celebrating the new additions to our families.  We are incredibly blessed to be able to share in these new life changes together.  Below is a picture of Ashley, and her husband and sister.  After that is a picture of Brooklynn, her husband, and their daughter, E.  

We would like to take one more minute of your time to tell you how appreciative we are that you are a part of our lives.   The blogging community has been one of our greatest professional blessings.  We have been inspired, challenged, and encouraged by you.  Two years ago, when we started Markers and Mascara, we never dreamed of all the blessings we would receive from joining in this crazy community.  We have made life long friends; as well as, learned more than we could have ever imagined.  Each day we log onto Instagram, Teachers Pay Teachers, Facebook, or read the many blogs we follow- we always, always, always learn something new.  You all have challenged us to work harder, be better teachers, and even to step out of our comfort zones.  The amazing thing is that when we did those, so many of you encouraged us along the way.  We seriously cannot thank you enough for the love you show us!

Lastly, we are joining in on the Teachers Pay Teachers Cyber Monday Sale tomorrow.  Stop by and pick up some of the things you have wish listed.  Don't forget to use the extra code SMILE to receive 28% off your purchases.  Also, you can use your feedback points to take even more off your total…go back and rate those products!
Again, we thank you for stopping by and continually blessing us!  We wish you all a wonderful holiday season!

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Primary Punchbowl Launch and Fall Blog Hop!!



Welcome to the Primary Punchbowl Blog Launch Fall Hop!!!
Go check out this new collaborative blog and all the amazing authors that will be contributing to the great ideas that will be shared!

http://theprimarypunchbowl.blogspot.com/

To celebrate the blog launch, we are having a Blog Hop packed full of freebies, sales, and giveaways!

Be sure to check out all the blogs that are participating at the bottom of the post. Each blog will be highlighting a fun fall activity, giving away a fall freebie, featuring four fall items 50% off in their TPT store, and hosting their own give away!!!  What a ton of fun stuff! Don't miss out!


 How fun are these "Easy Jack-o'-Lanterns" from Reading Confetti?  These pumpkins are a fun way to use up all those left-over craft supplies and allow students to create their rendition of a traditional, autumn Jack-o'-Lantern.  Click on the picture below to head to Reading Confetti's blog for more creative fall ideas.

http://www.readingconfetti.com/2013/09/jack-o-lantern-collages-preschool-craft.html#more



Head over to our TPT shop to grab our "Fall Freebie."  This freebie includes three "This or That" activities.  Students can pull a beginning sound card, CVC card, or beginning blend card, and decide which picture to color on their recording sheet!
Click below to grab this freebie!

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Fall-Freebie-2140273





This week, we will be offering four of our best selling fall units at 50% off!  Bear and His Friends, Bats, Kinder Farm, and October Emergent Readers are big hits in our classrooms. 

Our Kinders just LOVE Bear Snores On!  It is a perfect fall close read for any classroom!

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Bear-and-His-Friends-Bear-Snores-On-1527139
Bats are always a favorite with our kids.  This unit has reading centers, math centers, and writing activities to compliment a bat theme!

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/BATS-Literacy-Math-and-Comprehension-Activities-1475464

Our students love researching farm animals.  They already have some background knowledge, and are itching to learn more.  In this pack, there are reading and math centers, an emergent reader, and research books for learning more about farm animals!

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Kinder-Farm-Farm-Fun-For-the-Kindergarten-Classroom-1442491
These emergent readers are perfect for small group instruction, or independent practice! 

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/October-Emergent-Readers-1466230




Last, but definitely not least, enter our Rafflecopter for a chance to win a $10 TPT gift card!  Winner will be chosen on October 19th!


 Be sure to check out the other blogs in the hop to grab some freebies, and enter to win more TPT gift cards!

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

WINNER WEDNESDAY: On the Farm with Mrs. Wishy Washy




Oh, Mrs. Wishy-Washy...how we love Mrs. Wishy-Washy!  Do your students love this lady as much as ours do?  Our students beg to read more of Mrs. Wishy-Washy- or even, to re-read her stories! 

To accompany these stories, we created a Reading mini-unit with Mrs. Wishy-Washy and her farm friends.  We are excited to be giving away this unit and look forward to using it next week with our own students.

This mini-unit would work well for your students at the beginning of the year.  The skills included are: beginning sounds, color words, sight words, handwriting, and simple text.

 Students use their knowledge of beginning sounds to "code" the mystery sight words.  There is a resource included to help those students who are not proficient with beginning sounds.

 Students pull one of Mrs. Wishy-Washy's friends and search for miniature pictures.  Once students have found the pictures, they are to determine the beginning sound of that picture and work locate it on their recording sheet.  Aren't these magnifiers adorable?  Our kiddos LOVE getting to use such a cool tool in centers.

 This is another class favorite.  Reflecting images into a mirror keeps students engaged and interested.  At this activity, students reflect the sight word and record the image on their recording sheet.


 This activity can be used in a variety of ways.  Here, we had students read the sentences with their partner, then practice writing the sentences, using the pocket chart as their resource.  Our kinders need practice with handwriting and writing complete sentences, so this is a win-win activity for us!

Who doesn't love when Mrs. Wishy-Washy makes all the animals take a bath?  Throughout this activity, students work to determine what color paint Mrs. Wishy-Washy had to wash off of the animals.  Students are able to use a multitude of skills to complete this activity.

Our kinders are all about emergent readers.  One of their favorite things each week is getting to add a new reader to their Reading Briefcases.  This mini-unit includes an easy reader for extra practice.

If you aren't our lucky winner, but would still like to take a peek at this mini unit, click the image below.

This unit contains:
*An Emergent Reader - Mrs. Wishy Washy's Little Animals
*Farm Reflections - A Mirrored Sight Word Activity
*Sudsy Sentences - A Pocket Chart Activity
*Mrs. Wishy Washy's Mystery Words - A Beginning Sounds Mystery
*A Homework Practice Sheet
*A Mini-Assessment on Knowledge of Setting
*A Mini-Assessment on Knowledge of Characters
*A Mini-Assessment on Knowledge of Sequence of Events
*Various Sequencing Booklets
*Itty Bitty Beginning Sounds - Barnyard Style Activity
*Bubble-y Sight Words - Color Words, Write-the-Room

If you would like a chance to win this unit, please enter using Rafflecopter below.  We will be drawing Thursday morning!

Best of Luck!



Sunday, August 2, 2015

Back to School…Back to School


Tomorrow, it's back to school for the teachers in our district.  We have been working endlessly in our rooms to prepare for the new year.

One of our most favorite things about going back to school, really has nothing to do with us…or even our school…it's the Teachers Pay Teachers Back to School sale.  We look forward to it every year and always pre-shop days before…filling up our carts and making sure we've earned all of our free credits.
Monday and Tuesday (August 3rd and 4th), we are joining in and offering 20% off of everything in our store.  Over the summer, we've created a few new products that you may want to take a look at before you empty that shopping cart.

We are doing things a little different this year in our rooms, and are going back to some of the old classics, to teach literary themes.  We created four individual mini-units for four of the classic tales, and we bundled them, at a discounted price, if you are interested in all four.  It's a buy three, get one free deal! YAY!

Here are the four classic tales we designed mini-units to coincide with:
Each of these mini-units has five literacy and five math activities to accompany the classic tale.  Click on each of the pictures to view them in our TPT store.

In addition to the Classic Tales, we started a mini-series of "I Can Write" Booklets, which give students opportunities to practice the basic skills we teach in kindergarten (or review in first grade).
These pictures will take you right to these new booklets, as well.  Notice the freebie!  We are already working on booklets for digraphs, consonant blends, and long vowels.  Have any other ideas?  Leave any ideas/wishes in the comments, and we will happily add them to our list.

Thank you so much for your continued support.  We are very excited about this upcoming school year and look forward to collaborating with and learning from you all!

We wish you much success as you return to school.  And, for those of you who still have weeks of summer to enjoy…soak up every minute!