Hanukkah and Holidays Around the World- What I'm Teaching This Week..

Hey there! I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I had the whole week off and it was nice to relax! We flew back home to Chicago where we were greeting to a 17 in. snow storm! While it looked pretty it was NOT FUN to drive in!
                                                      Along the side of the road

                                 car stuck at the bottom of the driveway...ugh

My boys sure did LOVE seeing all that snow and even though we did not have winter clothing they played in it anyway!

So, now that break is over it is back into school mode. Just 3 weeks left til winter break and so much to do!

This week we will be learning all about the holiday of Hanukkah. I have TONS of books to read. The first one we will be using is called Hanukkah Bear( or also known as the Hanukkah Guest).
To start off, we talk about some vocabulary words and objects that are used during that holiday. I found a great book companion back a few year back made by Fluttering Through First Grade!
It has so many great activities from retelling the story, text to self connections and literacy centers. Click on the cover to check it out.

Another story we will be reading this week is

                      I created a book compainion set to go along with this story

We will be using this story to work on identifying story elements, vocabulary and compare/ contrast. 

We will also be using activities from this Hanukkah set to help experience this holiday in a fun and interactive way! All these activities will be in my literacy centers for the week.

We are also beginning our trip around the globe to see how other places celebrate holidays in December. I have been using this pack from Journey Of A Substitute Teacher and really like it!

It comes with posters of each of the holidays, flags of the countries, passports, fact sheets and more. This unit will take us all the way til the end of December.

If we have time I also love to teach my students how to play the driedel game and bring in some latkes for them to taste. I also ask my students to bring in any objects from home they would like to share about the holidays they celebrate during the winter months.

Make sure to stop by next week when we will be diving into one of my favorite weeks to teach..Gingerbread!!

I would love to hear how you teach about the winter holidays. Do you just focus on one or teach about all holidays celebrated in winter? Comment below for a chance to win a holiday item from my store of your choice! Click the link below to see what you could win and tell me which one you hope to win!! Winner will be picked on Wednesday, December 2nd. Good Luck!

                                             December Activities

5 for Friday

Today I am linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for her 5 for Friday!

It has been a whirlwind week for sure!! We started off the week learning all about Pilgrim children. I don't know why it took me so long to get this idea but I took some of the cute clip art I have and used it for my anchor chart!

Plus these days I have to add a border to EVERYTHING I do ;) My kids thought she looked so cute and it made me smile!

Here is what it looked like after we read a book
I have them hanging on the wall and do not want to take them down just yet.

We also used this week to go over what life was like then and compare it to now.

It was funny to hear their responses to what a phone looked like back then or how they had to use ink to write.
We also worked on telling the difference between fact and opinion with another sorting activity

Some of my kinders have been working on reading their sight words so I made this activity for them. They needed to identify the beginning sound of each picture to make a sight word.
Everyone wanted to work on these! Even my higher kids. It was so wonderful to see them so excited and having FUN!!

Hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving Week!

Pilgrims and Thanksgiving- What I am teaching this week.

Hey everyone! I am happy you are here. This week is our last before Thanksgiving break!! WAHOOO, one week off to just chill, relax and sleep! I can not wait!! How many days are you off for Thanksgiving?

So this week we are continuing to discover what life was like when the Pilgrims arrived. In reading this week we will be discovering 2 of my favorite books to read Sarah Morton's and Samuel Eaton's Day. These books are written from a child's point of view and are highly engaging because of the real photographs. The children in these books are based off a real child who lived in Plymouth long ago.

Click on the covers to see more of the books!

My students are always fascinated about how the children lived, dressed and worked back then. When we read this we focus on how they dressed  back then. My students love to see each piece of clothing and how many items they had to wear each day! We list all the items that Sarah and Samuel wear. I use these pictures to have my students practice sequencing

My students then use them same pictures to write how they would get dressed in their notebooks

You can grab these sequencing picutres to use by clicking

Then during the week, we then create a venn diagram to compare them to us

These books also tie into our social studies topic for this week..Then and Now

The students sort pictures into 2 catagories..Now or Then

Here is what it looks like all together

Then based on my students level, they have some sorting and writing activities to work on all week long

         We also read many books about what the First Thanksgiving was like

We are working on telling the differences between facts and opinions. This skill always seems to be a bit tricky for the little ones to understand. I created these cards for another sorting activity to be used in centers this week

Then they pick a few facts/ opinions to write down

Plus we LOVE to unscramble sentenes soooo we will be using this activity too!

I know I will be ready for break by the time Friday rolls around! What are some of your favorite Thanksgiving activities to use in your classroom?

Have a great week!