Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Great Find

So. I was looking for "Green Eggs and Ham" in the App Store and stumbled across the Dr. Seuss Bookshelf App. AMAZING! You can buy the books for a couple of bucks and there are 3 different reading options. Can I say PERFECT for the Listen To Reading part of Daily Five? The read aloud is great, the text is highlighted as they read and there's an option to touch words and have it read to them if thy can't decode. Great app!

Did I mention there's an option for them to record their voice reading to self?

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Gingerbread Activities

It's that time of year again! Time for the holidays. I LOVE teaching gingerbread man and doing a literature comparison study of the different versions of the story. I love everything gingerbread, so I am listing a gingerbread numbers around the room activity. It's easy and fun. My kids LOVED the Thanksgiving version, so I created a gingerbread one for those who are doing numbers to 20 around the holidays. The gingerbread people are really cute and similar, so the students have to pay attention to which one has the number on it or they'll write it on the wrong line. Fun sorting/categorizing activity, too. You can get it here on my TPT site. Have fun hunting those gingerbread numbers!!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Turkey Time

Life has been crazy and I'm way behind on blogging about all the great things happening in the Perch, but it's almost Thanksgiving and I've created some really cute things to use with my kindies during the next couple of weeks. We just finished numbers to 10 and are about to jump into those tricky teen numbers, so I created a Thanksgiving version of Numbers Around the Room. You can check it out here:

I also created a fun popcorn word spelling activity using turkeys and feathers. I'm going to be putting this in literacy centers next week. You can check it out here:
Last, but not least, I have created an entire unit to use in literacy and math centers for Thanksgiving. It's called Turkey Time and can be found here:

I'd like to graciously say that all clip art is from Her things are so cute and I just love them. The backgrounds were a Friday Freebie from!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Another Favorite Item...

If your school is like mine you probably have certain days you can laminate, which can be a pain if you need something on the fly. Well, I'm the Queen of living on the fly, so it can be a problem for me! This year we got some money for our classrooms from our Boosterthon fundraiser, so what did I buy? Yep, that's right. I got a laminator for my classroom! Here it is:
It is a Scotch brand 2 roller laminator. I got it at Target and paid $26. ($28.99, used my RedCard and saved 5%). Then it also had a $10 mail in rebate, so the total cost for it ends up being about $17. You can't beat it. It is GREAT. It uses the pouches, which I wasn't so sure about at first, but now that I'm used to them I love them. The pouches run about $16 for 50 (9x11 size) in the store. But, if you buy on Amazon you can get 100 pouches for around $14. It's a small price to pay for convenience in my opinion.

 It laminates 3mil for standard paper and 5mil for cardstock. Another plus is that you can actually cut your laminated item (like for puzzles or match up games) without it coming apart. It has been a fantastic investment. LOVE my laminator!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

These Are a Few of My Favorite Things!

So I've come across some really great ideas on Pinterest and I'd like to share what I've done with the ideas. First of all I'll share my favorite thing of all....DRY ERASE CIRCLES!!!! Oh my goodness how they have made my life sooooo easy! First a picture...
I found these at Ross. They were $6 for a pack of 2. Just as luck would have it they had exactly 3 packs, so I got them all. I put them on my small group table and fell in love. So, I got to thinking about how great it would be to have one at each seat. Well, glory be....Our youth pastor at church works at a graphic design/sign company. One day I showed him this picture and asked him about purchasing some vinyl from him so I could cut the circles on my Cricut. Well, he offered to cut them for me at a small price. Better yet, when he brought them to me he told me that his boss was willing to donate them to my classroom since I was a teacher! Can you believe it? Now I have one on every seat and it's amazing!!
I use them during our phonics time right now. I have a bucket in the middle of each table with dry erase markers and baby socks (2 kids=LOTS of socks). I use my ActiveSlate and can walk around the room and write on my ActiveBoard while the students are working at their seats. It has saved me about 15-20 minutes of instructional time because I don't have to pass out boards and markers, then take them up. I love these things.

Whew, Finally Back to Blogging

It's been hectic in the perch these past few weeks. My children have been sick, I've had some sickness myself, and it's been CRAZY getting back in the swing of things with an infant and a toddler. But, we're back in business and ready to blog about the great and wonderful things happening in KinderKeri's Awesome Owl K5 class. First, here are some pictures of the perch.

My behavior clip system. The red one at the bottom is an Angry Bird, I just took the picture before I put the clip art up!

My calendar board and block center. Everything is green and white polka dot.

View of my reading center. The reading bench is an old coffee table that I gave the Pinterest touch to! The boxes on top are for their Read to Self folders.

Sign for outside my door that tells where we are when we leave.

Word Wall above cubbies.

Proud Perch is where I hang an activity that we've worked on. I change it regularly.

View of the front of the room. You can see this was taken before we finished our first letter cycle.

Owl basket from Target. This is on the table as they enter the door. Folders are dropped here in the morning.

Math center and EQ wall. I got these white boards on the dollar aisle at Target. I use them to post my EQs for the week. Works great!

Owl hat my friend Katie made for me. We use it for our Owl of the Day writing activity. It's adorable!

How do we go home chart.

This is just a preview of my room. Things have changed a bit since I took these pics and I'll update with new ones soon! Next post: A Few of my Favorite Things!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Whew, and we're off...

I don't know about you, but it's been a hectic start to the school year. Just when I think I'm ready to go, I realize I'm not. On a happy note, I'm so so so happy with my room this year. It looks great! I've used so many of my Pinterest ideas that I've pinned and it's amazing how cohesive and pretty everything looks. Here's a snapshot of the front of my classroom. (this was before school started and has changed just a bit). I'll update later with more pics of the great ideas I've found!

Friday, August 17, 2012

It's All Coming Together...Finally

Well, it's been a LONG week, and we only worked for 2 days (officially). But, the room is looking GREAT! I've implemented so many of the Pinterest ideas I've seen and have a few more to work on this weekend to be ready for Meet the Teacher on Monday. But, the Awesome Owls are almost ready to take the perch and get ready for an amazing year. I can't wait. I will be posting pics of the room once everything is put together Monday.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

A Bit of Useful Knowledge and FREE owl labels

So today I crossed another Pinterest curiosity project off the list. I discovered PowerPoint for creating backgrounds and labels and man is it nice to finally know how all this cute stuff is made. I discovered some very useful websites that offer free downloads for personal use. is a wonderful site for free fonts. They even have some cool frame fonts. Some other good font sites are and

I also found a site for cute backgrounds for websites and blogs, but you could save the JPEGs/GIFs and use them in your PowerPoint displays as well. The site is and it is amazing. I found lots of cute free images.

Anyhoo, I used one of the cute backgrounds I found on the Background Labs site and some free frames I found on the blog Haphazard Happenstances, and came up with these adorable polka dot owl labels. I plan on using them in my classroom to label my art stuff. I'll just print and cut them and adhere them with clear contact paper. Easy enough! Enjoy the freebie!!

Here is what the labels look like.
 Owl Polka Dot Supply Labels

Monday, August 6, 2012

Monogram Font Tutorial

Today I made a great discovery. I've seen the cute monogrammed forms for the classroom with that great scrolly monogram font and decided I wanted to figure out how to do it myself. Well, I googled and searched and found the font and now I'm working on the cutesy things for my teacher stuff!

This is my trial run to see how it would look. I made a circle using the shape feature and added the text boxes. I used 3 boxes. The large letter in the middle is 170 pt. font, the 2 smaller letters are 125 pt. font.

Since I'm so excited about this I am going to share my discovery with you!  The font I've seen used is called Monogram KK and it is FREE!! You can download it here.

How to Download and Install a New Font:
1. Click on "download" to the right of the font you want.You will get the option to "run" or "save". Choose "save" and save it to someplace you'll easily access, like your desktop.
2. Now, go to where you saved the file. (Note: it will be a compressed zip file that has a zipper on the left side of the folder but will be named with the font
3. RIGHT CLICK on the folder and choose the option that says "Extract All". You'll see it extracting the files. It will save the font files in a separate folder labeled MonogramKK.
4. Double click the new folder to open it and there will be 2 files: a "read me" file and the font file. Minimize this screen and go to step 5.
5. VERY IMPORTANT to follow this exactly. Follow this sequence to open your font folder. (This is where you'll place the new font).
Your hard drive is generally the first icon in the computer folder and is labeled with a "C". Minimize this screen and pull up your font folder again. Right click the font file (the one with the little A in the bottom corner) and choose copy.
6. Pull up the font folder again and right click somewhere in the folder and choose paste. Your file is now ready to use! It will be listed as MonogramKK in your font dropbox.

Have fun monogramming all your teacher items!!!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Back to Reality

So, I just returned from a wonderful vacation in Edisto and I'm getting back into the swing of things for school. I've been seeing all of these really cute labels and things on Pinterest and thought I'd try my hand at creating some myself. Here is a freebie that I'm posting. It's a blank owl and polka dot template that can be used for whatever you'd like. I might use it for my schedule or mission statement or something. Anyway, enjoy. If you like it feel free to share it with others!

Awesome Owls Blank

I'll be sharing more things as I create them!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Awesome Owls

So, I'm changing my theme to Awesome Owls next year and I'm so excited. My room is going to be green and white polka dot throughout and have owls as the focus. So far I've got the curtains, bulletin boards, my emergency bag and apron completed. Once I get in week after next I'll get everything set up and post lots of pics. I can't wait to get it all together. Here is a sneak peek of the colors:

Emergency bag I made

Cute box I made. Don't know what I'll use it for.

Fabric covered pail.

The owl fabric is from Hobby Lobby and is called "Sittin' in a Tree". It's just so cute that I couldn't resist using it. As if that's not cute enough, I found these adorable owls at the Dollar Tree this afternoon. They're kind of Halloween-ish but they are still adorable. What do you think?

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Dollar Aisle Deals

I love me some Target, especially the dollar aisle. I mean, it's like a mecca for teachers, you know? If you haven't been lately (within the last week) you really need to go check it out. I found some great things for my classroom. I found small 4x9 lined dry erase boards to use for whole group phonics/writing, 4 to a pack for $1. Class set=$7. Then today I found two sided dry erase boards with the holes down the left to look like notebook paper but with the handwriting lines. Wow. That was a pretty good find. I got 7 of them and plan to use during my small group writing time to help students with visual/spatial aspects of writing on paper. Then, as if that wasn't good enough, I found OWL shaped chalkboards. Amazing, and so adorable. I got 2 of them. I'm not exactly sure how I'll use them, but at least they go with my owl theme.  Seemed like a good enough reason to buy them if you ask me! They also had boxes of dice and playing cards to use in your math centers.Then there's the Dollar Tree. They have some great things right now. I got foam puzzles with upper case, lower case and numbers 0-9 to use in my sensory tub. I also found 3 sets of dolch sight word cards written on the lined cards.

I found this calendar at the Dollar Tree. It is a student calendar from August to July. It is inside a thick plastic sleeve that is pre-punched to go in a binder. I plan on using this in my data notebooks to graph behavior. I'll either use as is OR I'll hole punch the calendars and use the sleeve for morning work with dry erase markers. Either way it's a win win situation. I don't know about your school but we are on copy shortage so I'm always looking for thrifty ways to save copies. I figured this was $30 for a class set of calendars to use all year long. That will save me about 240 copies for the year. Not too bad! Thriftiness counts in these times!

Gettin' Artsy and Craftsy (and Thrifty!)

So, this week I came up with an awesome idea for paint smocks for my kinders. I love to sew, so I thought I'd just make some. Well, I wanted them to be easily cleaned up, wiped down, vinyl seemed like the way to go. Um, have you priced sewable vinyl? Ridiculous! $12+ a yard. Crazy! So, being the thrifty crafter I am (thanks to Pinterest), I found a solution...

VINYL TABLECLOTHS!!!!! Really, it's so logical. They are fused on the inside with cotton and the vinyl is the right weight to make it comfortable. I got this one for $2 at Wal-Mart but you can get them anywhere. This one is 60x84 so I can get at least 5 or 6 out of this one piece. I found a simple pattern in the craft department for children's vests (because, after all, a smock is just a vest turned around backwards) and got to work. Since this fabric is already lined the sewing took about 5 minutes. Basically, you cut out the back piece on the fold and then 2 pieces for the front. Stitch the shoulders, then the sides and you're done.
Here is a picture of the front (which is actually the back because you turn it around. Make sense?).

Then, I added a velcro tab piece on the back to keep it in place.

And there you have it. A perfect paint smock for about 50 cents! I'll be making a set of these for my art center for sure!! Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Getting Started

So today is the day I begin blogging. I've tried a few times, but nothing I had to say before was really profound or interesting, so it didn't last. However, teaching is my passion and my love and I have LOTS of things to say about what goes on in kindergarten. I will admit that I am addicted to three things that go along with teaching: Pinterest, the Target dollar aisle and my iPad so I'm pretty sure those things will take up a good portion of my blog. So, that being said, here goes nothing!