Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Beginning the Daily Five

Just the beginning…

After Reading so much about it online.
after buying the book and reading some more,
after watching a bit of it in practise online…

I was ready to launch

Daily Five!!

and I love it.

1. Read to Self

We started by creating an anchor chart for Read to Self and practised the rules and anti behaviours as described by the sisters.  I was thankful for all of the wonderful resources available on TpT for Daily Five and had a hard time choosing the theme for my classroom as I thought they were all so cute.  Head over to TpT if you are wanting some quality resources all ready to use.  It certainly takes the stress out of creating your own. 

The Little Learners were amazing.  I admit I was doubtful…forever optimistic but definitely cautious.  However,  my wildest dreams were superseded.

My delightful Little Learners love Read to self. They are
self directed,
self motivated and
responsibly stay on task.

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photo 4


photo 3


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I have only one question…
why isn't this approach HUGE in Australia. 
If you are using it please leave a comment below. Id love to hear from you!

Happy Thursday!
Mrs StoweSmile

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Kindergarten Big Kids???

photo 1

As we begin the downhill run in Kindergarten, Term 4 indeed, we enjoy all kinds of
satisfaction as Kindy teachers
don't we.

Our Little Learners are now able to
read, write and do Maths independently.

They draw pictures….and we know what they are!

They colour rather than scribble…praise the Lord for that one!!!

They can make two lines without help.

Oh yes this is the satisfaction end of Kindergarten.

Kindergarten Big Kids???

Yes, that’s right.

This week my Kinder Kids had a visit from the Kindergarten group for 2014 and we read stories to them.  It was so thrilling for my Little Learners to be skilled and grown up.  They embraced the experience and thoroughly enjoyed nurturing the ‘New Little Kids'. 

Too cute for words.

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And so as one journey draws to a close we are reminded that another is just about to begin.

Don't grow too fast my Little Learners!

Happy Tuesday!
Mrs StoweSmile

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Definitely Still Wearing My L Plates…

Well folks,
I tried really hard to run a give-a-way.
Yes, I even used the fool proof Rafflecopter but somehow I still managed to fail.  It didn't work and sadly I know it would have been user error.

defeated I am NOT.
So the winners of my give-a-way were the lovely two ladies who left a comment on my post.

Barbara from Grade ONEderful


Mrs Whary the Teaching Fairy

I have emailed you both a copy of my flipbooks and
have all ten fingers and toes crossed that the email worked!!

If you feel pity for me then please leave me some advice or any tutorial sites and I will gladly do my homework. Please be kindSmile

Happy Wednesday!
Mrs StoweSmile

Sunday, 13 October 2013

My First Giveaway…

I have finally finished formalising a copy of this resource. 
It has been an old faithful year after year. 
It’s a word flipbook.

I think I just learned how to do this so here goes...
1 lucky reader will receive a copy of my flipbook free. 
Just enter above and the draw will take place
October 16. (assuming I did it all
I tried to get the entry below
I couldn't so its above

Phase 1 (Begin with sounds only)

After the first couple of weeks of Kindergarten I begin using my flipbooks.
First, photocopy the cover and about 12 blank pages with the numbers 1-7 on the left. Note that the booklets are thin list style.  I cut an A4 page in 4 width ways.  The kids love the easy to handle size.  Its a bit like a longer notebook/shopping list style.
Now you are ready 

Everyday the Little Learners flip to a new page in the booklets and wait ready to listen. 
I call out a single sound, hold up one finger then repeat the sound. 
The children repeat the sound while holding up one finger then they write the letter on their page flip style.
Needing More

I repeat the above process daily
adding simple cvc, vc and cv words as the children become confident sound/letter users.
Phase 2
As the Little Learners are ready I introduce a single line next to the number and
begin to demonstrate how letters sit on a line.

I continue the dictation style as above.  I forgot to mention above that if I am dictating more than a single sound I always hold up the matching number of fingers as a prompt.  The children also do this as they repeat the given word before writing it.


Its quite funny but every year, every group of learners create a concentrating hum in unison as they orally sound the word they are writing.
It’s music to my ears!!
Phase 3
During term 3 of Kindergarten I introduce writing lines.  Obviously now the Little Learners are writing the letters to form words confidently and I am focusing on the correct letter height  in relation to the lines.

Assessment Easy…
This activity is quick and easy but does show you who is needing extra support and where. 
ie beginning middle or end sounds. 

It also shows who is confidently identifying all sounds. 
I gradually split these learners off with independent group activity and work more closely with the others. 

I use this process right until the end of the year. 
It is part of our daily routine.
Why not give it a go?
You could create your own flipbook by stapling a bunch of pages together list style and have the children make their own design on the cover.  I did this for years. 


head over to my Tpt store and grab yourself a copy. 
Each phase as described above is ready to print, cut and add 2 staples to the top.
Either way please give this a try with your class.  It works…
Don't forget to enter my draw at the top.

Happy Sunday!
Mrs StoweSmile

Friday, 11 October 2013

create and share

It was an amazing

day last Thursday. 
I can only begin to imagine what the Summer will be like!

Fortunately our classroom is air conditioned.  However,
after a 50 minute outside lunchtime the Little Learners
were exhausted
so we decided to have some building time.






Today is a beautiful 30oC Australian Spring Day. 
Just heading out to enjoy it.
Isn't funny to think we are heating up and elsewhere its cooling down.

Happy Saturday!
Mrs StoweSmile

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Nothing like a quick Dance…

My Lovely Little Learners often request a smart board dance as a lesson break. 

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It’s so cute to watch them join in with actions and or singing.

photo 1


my favourite thing is…

letting them help me choose the dance clip.  They
want the dance that gives a score/points at the end. 
A bit like a computer game. 

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The Little Learners totally believe that they are being watched and earn their score. 
They cheer loudly at the end of the clip when they see their score. 
Its just the cutest thing to watch.

photo 4

Happy Thursday!
Mrs StoweSmile

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

centre work and A spring Blessing…

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Oh its great to be back!

Term 4 of Kindergarten is such an easy place to be. 
Routines and skills established, every Little Learner keen and engaged …loving it.


I still went home tired after day 1 on Tuesday. LOL

Today my Little Learners participated in a some centre activities.
The best part about these activities is a teacher friend of mine was clearing out in the Spring break and threw her off casts my way.  I didn’t have to do a thing.  Such a blessing.

1. Identifying sounds in words and isolating them then writing the word

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2. matching memory style Sight Words

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3. Matching Rhyming Pairs

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4. Matching a sentence starter with a picture and an ending word

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5. Matching a word, letter and picture card to make a set

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6. Writing individual storybooks

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It was a fun time revision time together and a happy way to start a new term.

Happy Wednesday!
Mrs StoweSmile

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Kindergarten Term 4–Here I come…

I have that ready feeling.
You know the one when it’s the end of a term break and you have filled your mind with 1000 things from blogger friends that you want to try out in your classroom with your Little Learners. 

My home workspace is cleared, clean and clutter free.

Cupboard sorted – check!

Desk cleared – check!

Ready for a fresh start – check!

Book on desk…hmm…

photo 1

Just put away the book that was on my desk and now it is definitely
clutter free!

photo 3


that is a microphone in the bottom right corner and
I don't sing. I share the other side of this room with my kids but it is
MY room!
(I actually love them coming in to do something while I work)

Stepping back a little…

 photo 4

Well…that’s it today. 
Heading off to enjoy the sun before the term begins.

Happy Sunday!
Mrs StoweSmile

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Fire Awareness Week

While reading a post from

Sandi at Rubber Boots and Elf Shoes

about Fire Awareness Week,  
I was reminded of a funny fire situation I faced at home a couple of years ago…

Being the ever clingy mum cherishing every ‘last’ experience with my rapidly ageing teens. I asked if they would like to get up extra early (Australian time zone) and watch the closing ceremony for the Olympics with me.
Okay… so I was met with maybe, we’ll see etc.

…until I added the lure of delicious treats and a hot breakfast in front of the screen. 
My beautiful daughter asked me to wake her up on the said morning while my gorgeous son decided to sleep in front of the big screen to avoid dragging his tired body up and out of bed.
Such obliging children.

Anyway I was happy. 
I bounced out of bed and gently woke up daughter who cheerfully complied wrapped in a quilt.  Son …well he was ready in the the TV room.  As we watched and we really were enjoying ourselves, I decided to cook the pancakes etc.  Our kitchen looks onto this family area.

This is the Fire part!!

I was contently standing at the gas stove top relishing the moment we were sharing when I suddenly smelled something burning.  I looked down and thought ‘darn I have burned the pancakes.  I lifted each one but no sign of blackness nor burning.  I looked around then suddenly realised that my white terry towelling bath robe was singed black from waist to shoulder.  As I realised it was me burning the robe burst into flame at the front.  I tried to undo the belt tie, struggling and cursing myself for being so good at tying it up tight,  but couldn’t so a patted the flames with my hands and somehow managed to extinguish the flames.  My robe was black and various shades of brown from my waist to almost my shoulder on the right side. 
A really hilarious Mrs Doubtfire moment indeed. 

Now the funny part…

In a state of shock I simply went on with my pancake cooking.

I walked over to deliver the pancakes and my son just looked at me in amazement.  He burst out laughing and on hearing what had just happened laughed louder.  He could not believe that this whole scenario had taken place a few metres behind where they had been sitting watching TV.  Nor could he believe that it all happened in silence.  I was totally silent through the experience.
(surprising reaction – silence)

Pancakes were great and I did manage to create a memory that we will never forget. 
Not quite the way I'd expected though!!!


Better head over to Sandi at Rubber Boots and Elf Shoes for some
real Fire Awareness Week help or check out my blog post, People Who Help Us.

Happy Thursday!
Mrs StoweSmile

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Australian Programming

After receiving feedback yesterday
I have decided to post about what we do for programming in my school, 
New South Wales, Australia.

Our school year begins in January and ends in December.
Term 1 – January 29 until April 12
Term 2 – April 30 until June 28
Term 3 – July 17 until September 20
Term 4 – October 8 until December 12
(Dates vary slightly each year)

Remember our Summer break is December & January!
That’s right…it’s heating up as I type.

Programming in Australia

Every Term
(although we do a yearly overview at the start of each year)

Before each term commences
every teacher programs activities for their class in every subject
using The New South Wales Board of studies outcomes. 
We begin to move to our New Australian Curriculum next Year.

These are our Key Learning Area’s (KLA’s)
Christian Education
Creative Arts
Human Society and its Environment
Personal Development, Health and Physical Education 
Science And Technology

Below is a screen shot of my program content page.


Below is a screen shot of the sub folders within one of the folders above.

photo 1

And next is my Term 1 timetable which was within #4 above.

photo 2

our programs for each subject area within the KLA’s.
The next three slides are the beginning of my Circus theme program
within the KLA, Human Society and its Environment.  Obviously its just a snippet not the whole program…didn't want to put you completely to sleep.
We set each program out in the same way at our school. We have a unit evaluation at the end of each unit too.  From this program we write our Day Book which I wrote about yesterday. 
Click here if you missed it.

photo 5

photo 4

photo 3

Please email me if you have any other questions about how we do things in Australia and I will happily share with you what happens at my school.

Happy Wednesday!
Mrs StoweSmile