Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Muffin Tin Monday

For over a year now I have been following a chain of blogs about interesting lunches for kids. The ideas piqued my interest but I never followed through and tried the muffin tin lunches or the whole bento trend. I am happy to say that I FINALLY tried it out and I was very happy with the results.

It was a rainy, cold inside-the-house kind of a day. A bummer for the start of our spring break. Jade had a friend over and I was wishing the girls could all get outside in the sunshine. As I looked outside at the hail and rain, I thought I'd make a sunny lunch to try to brighten up the afternoon. I did a yellow/orange theme and told the girls that it might lure the sun out of hiding (it didn't)

There are carrots, mac and cheese, corn, oranges, cake bites with powdered sugar and bunny sprinkles, and gold coins.

While I was making this lunch I was thinking about how great muffin tin meals would have been on playdates when Jade was younger. There was always fighting over who got to use the Cars plate or the Mickey bowl. I wish I'd known about these lunches back then. Also, while I know the child Jade had over this time is a good eater, many of her friends are not. I could fill up the muffin tin with lots of choices and let the pickier friends eat what they like rather than reciting every food item I posses in hopes that they'd identify one thing they'll eat. Jade will eat nearly anything so a variety muffin tin lunch would make everyone happy.

Here's Jade with her tin (I didn't want to include her friend because I knew I'd be posting it online) The girls devoured everything and came back for seconds on the mac and cheese.

Friday, March 8, 2013

(top) A princess goes to tea parties.
 Kings and Queens:
Unit activities

Our kindergarten class has been studying kings and queens following the EngageNY modules (found here). We have liked the content but found the module alone to be a bit dry and boring. So here are some of the supplemental materials I developed to add to the unit.

These castles were our culminating activity. The idea is from Deep Space Sparkle- check out her tutorial and great examples here

After creating the castles we had the kinder kids write a sentence to tell us one thing they learned about being royal. I have provided some captions to help you decode the kinder-writing.
(top left) Princesses wear a dress. (middle left) Princes wear a crown. (middle right) The queen plays in a kingdom. (bottom right) The queen rides a carriage. (bottom left I have no idea, sorry)

 I also created a word jar for this unit. The purpose of this word jar was to practice with our two main vocabulary words: royal and common.

Here's the jar- it's a recycled cheese puff tub from a class party. I made the label and used packing tape to secure it to the jar:

On either side of the "word jar" label, I attached two laminated cards labeled "royal" and "common". They were attached with small velcro circles.These cards were the headings for the vocab sort. By affixing them to the outside of the jar, they were easy to identify as the headings and they were quick to find when the students only had a minute to sort.

Inside the word jar were cards that belonged in one of the two categories (shown below). On each card is a picture of the object or person and on the flip side is the word. Though many of our kindergartners cannot yet read words like "carriage" and "pajamas" they can begin to associate the word with the picture through this sort. The cards also doubled as spelling assistants when the students were writing about royal things. They just went to the word jar, found the image they needed and flipped it over to help them write the word.

Here are all the cards in their categories