Monday, June 17, 2019


Jokes and riddles are a delightful way to develop children’s sense of humor as well as language standards. They can be used to reinforce double meanings of words, oral language, critical thinking, and questions and statements.

Riddle a Day
Write a riddle on the board each morning. Read over the riddle at circle time. Ask the children to smile if they “get” it. Encourage students to explain the joke and “think out loud.”

*You could also let the children discuss the riddle with a partner.

Riddle Books
Make riddle books for the students by folding paper in half and stapling. After reading the riddle each day, have them draw or write the answer in their books. Discuss their answers.

Joke Show and Tell
Have a “joke” show and tell. Ask each student to have their parents help them learn a joke at home. Use a play microphone to let them stand up and perform their joke for their classmates.

Every Day’s a Holiday
Introduce different silly and random holidays to your children.  Encourage them to explain what they think it means and how we can celebrate it. Kindness day, hug day, friend day, dictionary day, write a letter day, and dog biscuit day are just a few of the interesting days you can celebrate and use as a springboard for discussions.

*My grandson's third grade teacher tied in a vocabulary word every day to the holiday.  For example, on chocolate milkshake day he taught the word SAVOR because chocolate milkshakes are so good you want to savor them!

Note! Here are several websites where you can find a holiday for each day of the year.

Sunday, June 16, 2019


The weather is always interesting to observe and predict. Choose a “meteorologist” each day and ask them to choose the best word to sing in this weather song.

Weather Song #1 (Tune: “My Darlin’ Clementine”)
Sunny, sunny,
Sunny, sunny,
It is sunny in the sky.
S – U – N – N – Y, sunny,
It is sunny in the sky.







*Write weather words on a language experience chart and point to the letters as you sing.
*Discuss appropriate dress and outdoor activities for the weather each day.

Weather Song #2 (Tune: "Bingo")
There is some weather in the sky 

And sunny is its name-o.
s - u - n - n - y, 
s - u - n - n - y, 
s - u - n - n - y,
and Sunny is its name-o.


*Write words on sentence strips and hold up as you sing.

Weather Song #3  (Tune: “Shortnin’ Bread”)
What will the weather, weather, weather,
What will the weather be today?
Is it sunny, sunny, sunny? (Children stick thumbs up if it’s sunny.
S-U-N-N-Y today. Thumbs down if the weather is not sunny.)


*Adapt the weather words to your climate.

Graph the weather each day. Count and compare at the end of the month.

*Let children keep individual weather journals.

Saturday, June 15, 2019


Calendar chats can be a springboard for many math concepts, such as counting, addition, more, less, measurement, shapes, etc. Each month mark the calendar with days that have a special meaning for the children, such as birthdays, field trips, vacation days, etc.

How Many?
Count how many boys. How many girls? How many altogether? Which is more? Which is less?  How many ones and how many tens?

Think of equations that equal the date.

Vote on books, games, songs, and other favorites. Tally results and discuss more, less, and equal.

Before and After
How many days until the field trip?
What was yesterday? What is tomorrow?

Make a pattern as you color in the days on the calendar.
Make patterns with the children by having them stand, sit, or do motions.
Clap hands and slap thighs in patterns for the children to extend.

You will need a pointer for this activity. Insert different shapes in this song to the tune of “Do You Know the Muffin Man?”

Do you see a circle, circle, circle?
Do you see a circlesomewhere in the room?
Pass the pointer to a child who touches that shape and responds:
Yes, I spy a circle, circle, circle. Yes I spy a circlein the room.

*You can involve the whole group by letting them all get up and touch the shape mentioned in the song.

Compare the number of children who were tie shoes and Velcro, who have pockets or no pockets, who walked to school or rode to school, etc.

Days of the Week (Tune: “The Addams Family” – Sing in sign language.)
Days of the week. Days of the week. (Snap fingers.)
Days of the week. Days of the week.
Days of the week.
There’s Sunday (Open palm and circle out.)
And there’s Monday, (Make an “m” and circle.)
There’s Tuesday (Make a “t” and circle.)
And there’s Wednesday, (Make a “w” and circle.)
There’s Thursday (Make an “h” and circle.)
And there’s Friday, (Make an “f” and circle.)
And then there’s Saturday. (Make an “s” and circle.


*Point to the days on a calendar as you sing.

Macarena Months (Dance the Macarena as you sing.)
January, (Left arm out with palm down.)
February, (Right arm out with palm down.)
March, (Turn left palm up.)
April, (Turn right palm up.)
May, (Right hand on left shoulder.)
June, (Left hand on right shoulder.)
July, (Right hand on back of head.)
August, (Left hand on back of head.)
September, (Right hand on left front hip.)
October, (Left hand on right front hip.)
November, (Right hand on back right hip.)
December, (Left hand on back left hip.)
Then you turn around. (Turn around.)


Friday, June 14, 2019


Every day can be a holiday with these celebrations!

New Shoes (Tune: "This Old Man")
When children wear a new pair of shoes to school, have them stand
and dance as you sing this song to the tune of “This Old Man.”

Here’s one foot. (Child sticks out one foot.)
Here are two. (Child sticks out other foot.)
Each is wearing a brand, new shoe,
So stand up, turn around,
Dance around the floor.(Child dances in a circle.)
That’s what these two feet are for. (Point to feet.)

Welcome Back (Tune: "The Bear Went over the Mountain")
If a child has been absent, insert their name in this song when they return to school to let them know you missed them.

Welcome back child’s name.
Welcome back child’s name.
Welcome back child’s name.
We’re glad you’re here today.

Loose Tooth
Celebrate when a child loses a tooth by using their name I this tune of “Turkey in the Straw.”
Oh, look in child’s name mouth
And what do you see?
A great, big hole where a tooth used to be.
Well, they wiggled it and jiggled it until it wiggled free.
Now, there’s a window when they smile at me.

Happy Haircut (Tune: "Happy Birthday to You")
Only sing this song if the children like their haircut. We've all had haircuts where we wanted to hide in a sack!

Happy haircut to you.
Happy haircut to you.
You're sure lookin' good!
Happy haircut to you.


Birthday Song
Today is the birthday of somebody who
Is happy and smiling and right in our room.
Now look all around you and tell me just who…
Is happy and smiling, my goodness, it’s you! (Point to the birthday child.)

Today is child’s name birthday.
Let’s make them a cake. (Pretend to hold a bowl
Stir and mix and mix and stir, and stir.)
Then into the oven to bake. (Put cake in the oven.)
Here’s our cake so nice and round. (Make a circle with arms.)
We’ll frost it with icing white. (Pretend to put on frosting.)
We’ll put _____ candles on it (Hold up age with fingers.)
To make their birthday bright!

*Here’s a video where I demonstrate the song and chant:


Birthday Cake (Non-edible!)
How about a cake that is sugar free, gluten free, and lactose free? You can make a “human birthday cake” by having all the children in the room hold hands and make a circle. Let the birthday child get in the middle and choose friends (the number for how old they are) to be the candles on the cake. The candle/friends stand around the birthday child and put their arms over their heads like a flame. When the birthday child “blows” them out, they melt to the ground.

Birthday Book
Give each child a sheet of paper and ask them to draw a picture of a gift they’d like to give to the birthday friend. The birthday child gets a big sheet of construction paper to decorate like the cover of the book. Each classmate presents her picture to the birthday child as they say, “Happy birthday (child’s name). Here is (what they’ve drawn) just for you.” Staple their pictures in the construction paper to make a special book.

Thursday, June 13, 2019


Each morning before the children arrive, write a note to them with a little hint about what they will be doing. (You can write on a white board, but if you use a large chart you’ll be able to review past experiences.)

It’s especially fun to have a class mascot (puppet or stuffed animal) write the message each day. Your morning message might look like this:

     Dear Friends,

     Today is date. It’s Terrific Tuesday and I’m so glad to see
     you! We have a new book about beavers. We also
     have music with Mr. Peterson in the afternoon. I can’t
     wait to get this great day started!

                   Pokey the Pony

Daily Schedule
Children will feel more confident when you review the schedule each day. For younger children, use picture clues by the different activities. Hang up on a clothesline and then flip over as you go through the day.

*Put magnetic tape on the front and then flip them over as you complete each activity.


Classroom Helpers
As you discuss the schedule, remind children of their assigned jobs for the day. Giving titles of real careers will add meaning to their duties.

     Supervisor – Calls the roll.
     Police Officer – Makes sure everyone walks slowly in the hall.
     Mail Carrier – Passes out papers.
     Librarian – Cleans the classroom library.
     Gardener – Waters the plants.
     Meteorologist – Gives the morning weather report.
     Accountant – Does the lunch count.
     UPS – Takes reports to the office.
     Maintenance – Picks up the classroom.


Wednesday, June 12, 2019


Feeling accepted and being part of the classroom family is the perfect platform for developing oral language skills.

Write a capital “I” on the index card and tape it to the cylinder block to make your “I phone.” Explain that only the person holding the “I phone” can talk. Begin your day by singing, “Tell me something good…” Pass the phone to a child and ask them to tell you a sentence about something they are happy about or looking forward to doing that day. Children continue passing the phone around the group as each child says something starting with “I….”

*Use the phone at the end of the day for students to recall something they learned or something they did that made them feel proud.

Encourage children to “think outside the box” by calling role at circle time each day. One child is chosen to play "teacher" and call attendance and mark their friends as “present” (with a check) or “absent” (with a zero).


Creative Thinking
Invite children to “think outside the box” by answering creative questions such as those below when you call attendance:

If you were an animal, what would you be?

If you found a genie in a bottle, what would you wish for?

What super hero would you like to be? Why?

What book character would you like to change places with?

If you found $100, what would you buy?

If you could go on a magic carpet ride, where would you go?

If you were the teacher what would you do?

How old would you like to be?

If you were a candy bar, what would you be?

Note! There is no “right” or “wrong” answer. Accept all responses.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019


Recognizing and accepting the way children feel is an essential part of making them feel comfortable. It's important to help children learn to identify their feelings and how to deal with them in appropriate ways.

If You’re Happy and You Know It (Traditional Song and Tune)
If you’re happy and you know it, that's O.K.…(Clap twice.)

If you’re happy and you know it, that's O.K.…(Clap twice.)
If you’re happy and you know it, that's O.K.…(Clap twice.)
Whatever you're feeling, that's O.K.  (Hug self.)

*Insert other feeling words and actions in the song. For example:
“If you’re sad and you know it cry your eyes…” (Rub eyes.)
“If you’re angry and you know it stomp your feet…” (Stomp feet.)
“If you’re scared and you know it say, ‘Oh, my!’”…

End with, “We all have feelings, that’s O.K. (Stick up thumb.)
We all have feelings, that’s O.K.
Happy, sad, mad, or glad, 

We all have feelings and that’s O.K.” (Thumbs up.)

*Go around the circle and encourage each child to tell how they are feeling.  Stick up your thumb as you respond and say, "That's O.K."

Make puppets of Emoji feelings similar to the one shown. Discuss things that make you angry or sad or scared. What can you do when you feel (emotion)? Role play appropriate and inappropriate responses for different emotions.

*Place emotion faces on the floor. Let children choose one that expresses how they are feeling. Encourage them to explain why they feel that way.

Let children write their names and draw “feeling faces” as they enter the classroom each day.


*As you read books, invite children to relate when they’ve felt like the characters in the story.

*Extend vocabulary by brainstorming different ways to say “happy,” “sad,” “angry,” “surprised,” etc.