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Sunday, December 16, 2012

Gingerbread Friends and More

"Gingerbread Friends" by Jan Brett
I'm not sure if all of you know, but Gingerbread Friends by Jan Brett is the sequel to Gingerbread Baby.  It picks up where the gingerbread baby is living in the house that Mattie made for him, and he's happy except for when Mattie goes out with his friends.  So the gingerbread baby goes out into the wide world to find somebody to play with.  This is such a cute story!  He goes to a bakery and sees many decorations, but none of them are alive like he is.  When he comes back home, Mattie shows his love for him by baking him many gingerbread friends.  This book is really lovely for this time of year.

I always make gingerbread houses at this time of year.  Here is a little gift to you, if you'd like to use a guided reading book.  This is one of my children's favorite books, because they really feel like it connects to what we're about to do.  We discuss the sequence of building the house before we actually make it.  It helps SO much!  I think it's really important that kindergarten students have a clear picture of what we want them to do.  Years ago, I did this project without using the book, and I can honestly tell you the houses come out much nicer with the instructions.
My Gingerbread House Big 2

Another thing I like to do at this time of year is make sight words really fun and accessible to my kids.  So I made this Christmas tree where the children have to match the sight word ornaments to the words that are already on it.  I did it first in large group, and they went crazy for it.  They begged me to put it in the ABC center!  Since it's laminated, I did put it in the center, and they've been recognizing sight words all week.  Below are the ornaments in PowerPoint format so that you can make it your own.  What I did was cut a green tree from posterboard and put it on black backing for contrast.  Then I printed the white ornaments on sticker paper, cut them, and attached them to the tree.  Next, I laminated the finished tree and then put velcro above each of the words.  I printed the colorful ornaments, laminated them, cut them, and then put velcro on the back of each one.  Then it was ready to go!

Sight Word Christmas Tree
Sight Word Christmas Tree


I also wanted to tell you that I just put up Christmas Guided Reading Books and Winter Sight Word Board Games on TPT, and I think they're two of the best products I've ever made, mostly because they were inspired by the wishes of children in my class.  If you have time, take a look and let me know what you think.

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