Search This Blog

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Parade of Literacy - Book Themed Costumes!

I love how creative my students and their parents get every year for the Parade of Literacy!  Here are my top picks for this year!

1. Amelia Bedelia
2. Rainbow Fish
3. Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
(Notice the "gum" [gel] in his hair!)
4. Charlie Brown
5. Cindy Lou Who

And of course, our teachers, who go all out every year!

The Adventures of Tintin and Captain Haddock DIY Costumes

It's the most wonderful time of the year... no, I don't mean Christmas.  PARADE OF LITERACY!!! 
It's my favorite day of the year, and pretty much my favorite part thing about being a teacher.  Two years ago I went as Ms. Frizzle, and last year Aidan and I went as Max and a Wild Thing from Where the Wild Things Are.
I totally plan a year in advance.  I know I'm crazy, but at least I channel it into something productive - costume making!

This year, I decided to dress Aidan and I up as Tintin and Captain Haddock.  In case you don't know who they are, don't worry, you're not alone.  If you DO know who they are, I am so happy we are friends!  The Adventures of Tintin is a comic series, created by Belgian cartoonist Herge.  Since Dan and I met, and went to college in Belgium, plus my mom is/was a huge fan, so growing up, liking the comic series wasn't really optional, it felt like a perfect fit!  Plus, while Aidan isn't a ginger, he definitely has some red tones to his hair.  Let the planning begin!

Tintin's costume:
(Especially for Aidan's part, I wanted to get things that he could wear anyway.)
- Khaki pants (found mine at Target)
- White collared shirt (found mine at Old Navy)
- Light blue long sleeved shirt (found mine on Burt's Bee's website)
- Dark brown/black shoes
- Alfalfa-esque hair spike
- Stuffed Snowy dog toy
- Light colored trench coat
- Leather backpack/satchel

Captain Haddock's costume:
- Navy pants (mine were ones I already had)
- Royal blue shirt (found at Goodwill)
- Navy blazer (found at Goodwill)
- Captain's hat (found it online)
- Black booties
- Fuzzy craft fabric (found at Michael's)
- Black felt
- Hot glue gun
- Ribbon
- Anchor stencil

Tintin's costume was pretty straight forward.  Captain Haddock's took a little work. 
1. I cut out a beard from the fuzzy fabric, and hot glued ribbon to the corners.  I also cut a long strip of it, and hot glued in to the inside of the captain's hat.
2. I printed out a large picture of an anchor I liked (in the comics, Captain's Haddock's anchor is pretty small, but I wanted it to be noticeable, so I took some artistic liberties.  I cut out the anchor, pinned it to the felt, and cut the anchor out of felt.  I then hot glued it to the front of the blue (Goodwill-find) shirt.

Then, we took Aidan outside, and got a few pictures.  Because, seriously - he looked way too stinking' adorable not to have photographic evidence.  Besides, he'll need proof when he needs to see a shrink once he's an adult.


And... just for reference sake, here are the original Tintin and Captain Haddock:

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Reading Street Kindergarten "Smash! Crash!" Week

Yay for Smash! Crash! week!  The boys always love this week - trucks and tractors galore!  So, let me show you what we did in our centers this week:

1. Math Center

I really went all out in the math center this week.  In math we're learning about one-to-one correspondence, and I wanted to tie in the trucks and tractors.  I found this great free bundle on vehicles at  One of the games was these cards that had a certain number of vehicles, with three numbers at the bottom, then the kids put a clothespin on the correct number.  It reenforces one-to-one correspondence, number recognition, and fine-motor skills.

I caved, and actually bought a packet on  It was totally worth it!  It had a few different games.  The first one was a domino game, using tractors instead instead of dots.  Big hit!

It came with a matching game too.  Again, great for one-to-one correspondence!

I also used a game from the first game, where the kids put numbers 1-10 in order.  They used orange and green train cars, which was also great for reenforcing patterning.

2. Literacy Center

I found some great sight word practice sheets.  

I used part of the first packet to practice sequencing (which could've gone to math also, but I thought it might help visual learners, when we're talking about sequencing our stories).

I made a fun sight word practice.  (One of our words this week was "a", so it was super easy, but it'll get more interesting.)  You'll need an old cookie sheet, some tape, sight word cards, magnetic letters and white board markers.


I made a great, differentiated CVC word practice game.  You'll need a picture of a Weiner dog, and a clip art of a bone.  For your below- or on-level students, you can cut the bone into three pieces. This way it'll help them know it the letter is a beginning, medial or ending letter.  For your advanced students, you make the bone smaller, and they have free range of the order they put the letters in.

3. Science Center

I found a worksheet on motion; where the kids had do decide if the action in the picture was "pushing" or "pulling".

4. Complementary Books

We read Little Blue truck one day, and Little Blue Truck Leads the Way the next.  We then compared (what's the same), and contrasted (what's different) them.  THE KIDS HAD SO MUCH FUN!!!  And, we were using our vocabulary words.  Score!!!

- Same main character.
- Same author.
- Same illustrator.
- Someone was rude to Blue.
- But he showed them kindness.
- Same opening line,

- Little blue is a lighter color (haha, my artistic kiddo).
- Different setting (country vs. city).
- Different supporting characters (animals in first one, vehicles and people in the second one).

That's all for now, folks!
Next week is Dig, Dig Digging, so some of the center games will stick around for one more week.  
Hope I was able to give you a few ideas for your own kiddos.
Let me know if you have any thoughts, ideas or questions!