Saturday, April 19, 2014

Sunday: Be Inspired and Rest 4-20-14

Happy Sunday, friends! I wanted to share a few of my most inspirational encounters online this week.  I can't take credit for any of these gracious expressions or hopeful links, but I do hope that passing them on will provide some joy to you today! If you find something you would like to Pin, please take time to visit the original source, if available, and Pin from there. I have provided an easy-to-click hyperlink credit to any traceable sources. When applicable, I've also included my favorite quotes from some of the reading passages so you can have a small preview before you read on.

I hope this is encouraging for you! Have a lovely, restful, happy Easter Sunday!

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Source: Twitter @Proverbs31org

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Source: A Holy Experience, "When You're Tired of Being Torn: Why He Came"
"You alone are the God for us — because You alone are the God who has been one of us." ~Ann Voskamp

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Source: Easter Art Print by LAShepherd on Etsy

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Source: Easter Printable Digital Word Art by 1DogWoof on Etsy

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Source:  Relevant Magazine, Good Friday Means Nothing Without Easter Sunday
"The full Gospel of Jesus Christ is an intertwined story of life, death and resurrection."
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Friday, April 18, 2014

Five for Friday: April 18, 2014

This is such a fun, eventful time of year for our firsties! I had trouble choosing only five things to share this week, but that's definitely a good problem to have, right?!?

After studying the life cycle of plants, we have transitioned to focus on the life cycle of other living things… frogs, butterflies, and ladybugs, to name a few. Here are a few activities and projects that we have used to demonstrate life cycle in our classroom.
  • Frogs

  • Butterflies

  •  Ladybugs

We introduced our new unit with one of my favorite texts: The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle.
To reinforce the reading skills of retelling a story and responding to texts, the students created this caterpillar book report. It's a great visual craft that, in which the students write to retell the beginning, middle, and end of the story as well as write their own response. I provided this example to get them started:
and these are samples of their work...

In addition to the book report, the students created this days-of-the-week flip chart to sequence foods the caterpillar at throughout the story. 

These little Easter pictures were favorites among my students as well. We combined tear-art, foam stickers, foam paper, handprints, and gummie worms to create these little Easter chicks.

Last, but not least, many of our plants have grown quite well this week! My kids have been so positive about the experience. For the ones that didn't sprout as quickly (or at all), they just called them "late bloomers" and carried them home with pride. 

I hope you all have a delightful Easter weekend!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

On the Menu: Almond-Crusted Cheesy Squash Casserole

I am so excited to share this recipe with you all! I recently put this dish together one night when I decided to mix together a few ingredients I had on hand. The outcome was surprisingly tasty! So after a couple of trial runs (to make sure I wasn't just lucky the first time) I think it's safe to pass along. ;) This will definitely be a favorite dish at our house this summer!
1-2 eggs
1 cup almond flour (or almond meal)
2 medium-sized yellow squash
1 tomato
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
shredded cheese (use as desired)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Slice squash into relatively thin slices.

Make an egg wash by beating eggs until the whites and the yolks are well blended.

Dip each slice into the egg wash. Then, place the squash into the almond flour, flipping it to coat both sides in the flour.

Place each coated piece along the bottom of a baking dish, lightly coated with cooking spray. Create one layer across the bottom of the dish.

Continue the process to create another layer of squash.

Slice the tomato, and spread the slices evenly across the top layer of squash.

Bake, covered, for 15 minutes.
Uncover, and sprinkle garlic powder and sea salt evenly across the top of the casserole.
Continue baking, covered, for an additional 15 minutes. 

Uncover and sprinkle cheese on the top of the casserole.
Bake for an additional 5 minutes, or until the cheese is thoroughly melted.

Scoop out a serving, and enjoy!

If you try my recipe, please feel free to share your thoughts. I would love to hear about your experience. I hope you enjoy it! 

Friday, April 11, 2014

Five for Friday: April 11, 2014

It's been a couple of weeks since I have linked up with my five. This week has been particularly busy for our classroom, and I am excited to be able to share some of our recent busyness here. :)

This recent art activity has been a great opportunity for the students to demonstrate what they have learned about the water cycle so far. I am still beyond grateful for the use of the water cycle song, because it has made the process of learning those long words so much easier for my little firsties! (If you missed my earlier post and are interested in using the water cycle song with your students, you can just click here.)

This simple science experiment has been a wonderful way for our students to make observations of the water cycle in action. Simply put a little water in in a zip-lock bag and tape it to a window. Over the next several days, students can see the process of condensation as "clouds" form along the plastic inside the bag.
I found this neat observation page somewhere in my filing cabinet (don't you love it when you stumble upon an already-made activity?) and we have used it to record our observations throughout the week.

As we transitioned into a plant theme, these lovely flowers have provided a great thematic activity that incorporated word work into our centers.

Yes, we have also included a seasonal (all seasons, that is) activity in our plants study. This window pane craft has been one of my favorites lately. Each student created one tree that depicts each of the four seasons in the different parts of the window pane. It was a bit challenging for them to compartmentalize each season onto different sections of the same tree, but I think their final projects turned out well.

In other news, my brother-in-law is getting married tomorrow, so we are getting ready for a lovely wedding weekend. These little rehearsal dinner accents have been in the works at my house for a while now. I can't wait to see it all come together. :)

I hope you have a lovely weekend!