Happy Halloween!

I took a few pictures of some of the activities we did today, but I was a pretty terrible photographer because I forgot a few key shots of the finished products... whoops!

Handprint Spiders 
 First we used white paint on black paper to marble paint a web.  They LOVED this, plus it was super easy!  Through trial and error I found that if you spoon the paint onto the paper in a spiral-ish shape it looks most like a web when they are done.

 While the webs were drying, we made hand print spiders.  Just paint the palm of one hand plus four fingers purple (or whichever color you want your spider to be).  Press it down on the paper once.  Now turn the paper and press the hand down a second time to make four more legs.  When it is dry, add googly eyes.  Next, cut the spider out and glue it onto the web.  Super easy, cute and fun!  I promise to post finished photos soon!

Tissue Paper Candy Corns
At first, I wanted to do the adorable stained glass type of candy corn found here, but honestly we did not have enough time (and I did not have enough patience to cut out all of the construction paper and waxed paper pieces!).  Instead, I had them glue tissue paper squares onto a candy corn template.  I ran the template through the copier, trimmed it with a large paper cutter and did the corners with scissors.  Very quick, easy and cute!  Are you sensing a theme here?!?  You can download the candy corn template for free {HERE}.
 This is not the best example... I found that for better results use a pencil to lightly draw the lines, and encourage kids to completely cover each section.

Spooky Spider Cupcakes
Due to a freak snowstorm blizzard that hit on Saturday night, one of the Halloween parties we were supposed to go to was canceled.  Lucky for my little ones, I still made the cupcakes that were originally for the party and brought them to school today.  I needed a super easy decorating idea, and found an adorable one that one of my friends posted on facebook.  All you need to do is draw a few concentric circles, then drag a toothpick through to make a web.  Stick a spider ring on top (I got mine at iParty) and voila!  Easy peasy spooky wooky spider cupcakes.  The kids were obsessed (plus, the inside of the cupcakes were Halloween Funfetti.  Yum!).  I am SO mad at myself for not taking a picture of my final product, but I posted a similar one that I found on another blog.

Easy Peasy Math Center AND Coupons!

I just sat down and made a fun, colorful shapes mini word wall.  I am a HUGE fan of mini word walls.  In my classroom I use them in acrylic 8 x 10" frames (I got mine for a dollar or two at Christmas Tree Shops).  You can find them all over my room at the writing center, science center, block area and more!  I printed out two copies of this one and put them back to back inside the frame.  Then I gave the children pipe cleaners and have them create the shapes.  You could also use play dough, popsicle sticks, straws, wikki stix... the possibilities are endless.  Voila!  Super easy, inexpensive and it is great for developing understanding of shapes as well as developing vocabulary.  Grab your free copy {HERE}.

I also found a fabulous coupon from Snapfish... 300 prints for only $3!  Just enter the code SPOOKY300 at checkout.  It is good through November 6th.  I ordered tons of personal pictures and a bunch of my little ones as well.  I have a few projects in mind already!

Another great deal is a 50 oz bottle of Tide for $3.99 with free shipping!  You just have to log into your Amazon account and click on the $2 coupon.  Thanks to Moske Monkey Business for the tip!

And the Winners Are...

Congrats, Amy & Cheryl!  Please email me at adventures.in.k.blog@gmail.com so that I can send you your copy of the Autumn Math Fun unit.  Nobody guessed Pauly D, so I decided to give away the copies to both ladies who guessed Snooki.  All those rhinestones that you saw in the picture ended up on the glasses, thanks to Gorilla Glue (which was also fitting, because Snooks is always looking for "Gorilla Juiceheads").

I loved all of your guesses!  It was the silliest and most ridiculous costume ever but we had lots of fun!  And don't worry, the umm bottle that I have in the picture was just an empty prop.  I have a mysterious death virus that will not go away so I was actually drinking cranberry juice and ginger ale the whole night.  It's too bad that you can't see my huge pink fuzzy slippers in the photo, and that Pauly ditched all of his DJ equipment.

World's Easiest & Silliest Giveaway - Last Chance to Enter

Seriously this is the easiest giveaway you will ever enter.  All you have to do is guess what I am dressing up as for Halloween.  You don't have to follow anyone else, link up to anything or even follow me!

Click {HERE} for all the details.  I am picking two winners tonight at 6:00!

A Silly Halloween Giveaway

This is the project I'm working on tonight for the Halloween party we are going to tomorrow night.  The first person who guesses what I'm going as wins a copy of my Autumn Math Fun unit.  If anyone guesses what my boyfriend is going as (it goes along with mine), you will get a copy too!  All you have to do is leave a comment with your guess.

Hint:  Even if we were allowed to dress up, I would not be wearing this to school.

Good luck!

Great Christmas Gift

I just snatched one of these up from Living Social and thought I would share.  It is only $18 for a photo book, including shipping.  I made one for my boyfriend last year, and he is begging me for another one.  It would also be great for family members.  You could even use it in your classroom to create a class book about a field trip, event or other special memory.

Click {HERE} to check it out!

What's Cooking Wednesday

So usually for this weekly feature I share easy peasy yet still delicious recipes that busy teachers can make in a flash.  However, I had to make an exception for this one.  It is called "World's Best Lasagna"!

To make it a litttttle easy peasy, I doubled the noodles, tomato and ricotta ingredients, and used about 1 1/4 pound of both lean ground turkey and italian sausage.  This was enough to make two lasagnas.  Stick one in the freezer, then all you have to do is let it defrost in the fridge for about 24 hours, then cook it as directed.  Another hint that I saw on All Recipes was to let the lasagna sit in the fridge for 24 hours before serving to let the flavors enhance.  I tried it, and it was SUPER delicious!  I used turkey instead of beef and all reduced fat cheeses in order to make it a smidge healthier.  Enjoy!


  • 1 pound sweet Italian sausage
  • 3/4 pound lean ground turkey
  • 1 large minced onion
  • 6 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 (6 ounce) cans tomato paste
  • 2 (6.5 ounce) cans canned tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 2/3 cup fresh basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 12 lasagna noodles
  • 16 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 pound mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


  1. In a Dutch oven, cook sausage, ground turkey, onion, and garlic over medium heat until well browned. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and water. Season with sugar, basil, fennel seeds, Italian seasoning, onion powder, garlic powder, garlic salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons parsley. Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
  2. During the last 30 minutes of cooking, soak lasagna noodles in hot tap water.  Drain noodles, and rinse with cold water. In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese with egg, remaining parsley, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  4. To assemble, spread 1 1/2 cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Arrange 6 noodles lengthwise over meat sauce. Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Top with a third of mozzarella cheese slices. Spoon 1 1/2 cups meat sauce over mozzarella, and sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers, and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil: to prevent sticking, either spray foil with cooking spray, or make sure the foil does not touch the cheese.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 25 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.

My Favorite Read Aloud

I am linking up with Swimming into Second's favorite read aloud linky party! 

My all time, hands down favorite book to read aloud to my little ones is Where the Wild Things Are, because who doesn't love to roll their terrible eyes, show their terrible claws and gnash their terrible teeth?  Doing this read aloud for my demo lesson five years ago helped me to land my job, so I also think of it as a super good luck charm.  You can read more about my obsession with this book {HERE} and find a fabulous free, animated version {HERE}.

Since Where the Wild Things Are is probably one of the most popular children's books of all time, I'm also picking another one that you might not be quite so familiar with! 
Bippity Bop Barbershop is the super sweet story about a little boy's first trip to the barbershop.  It is written by Natasha Anastasia Tarpley, author of I Love My Hair.  It is a super sweet story of a little boy and his very sweet relationship with his father.  I use this book as a mentor text for writing.  It is so realistic and relatable for little ones (boys AND girls) that it perfect for personal narrative, especially for adding interesting details to the story.  It is also great for teaching dialogue.  If you haven't read it, do yourself a favor and put it on your "must read" list!

The Fire Station!

Yesterday we went on our first field trip.  We visited the fire station (we are so lucky to have one a few blocks away from school)!  The kids absolutely LOVED it.  I love that it not only teaches them about fire safety, but expands their vocabulary.  This is extra important, as 17 of my 22 little ones speak another language at home.  The firefighters used words like hose, wrench, axe, siren, smoke detector, hydrant and so much more.

For three days before we visited the fire station we did many of the centers from my Fire Safety Unit.  The kids loved them!  It wasn't until our THIRD DAY IN A ROW of indoor recess, though, that I found some amazing resources on You Tube.  THE KIDS LOVED THEM (plus, they totally saved my sanity).  Even better, I found that they understood the concepts much better after having watched the videos.

Here were their favorites:

A book AND a song? Perfection! I might use this as a listening center next week.

Real fire trucks in action... They all loved it, especially the boys!

This is a great movement activity! Plus, they thought it was HILARIOUS that the lady was running in circles.

 I'll be honest, I can't STAND this song but they adored it. I did love, however, that it teaches when it's appropriate to call 911 and when it's not. I even overheard two little girls quizzing each other today ("Can you call 911 if you get a boo boo on your leg?" "No!" "Can you call 911 if your friend's house catches fire?" "Yes!") So cute.

Sparky the fire dog. Enough said! They couldn't get enough and literally begged for "Just one more time!!! Please?!?"

Autumn Math Fun!

I was so inspired by the adorable clip art I just bought from Digi Web Studio that I went a little crazy and made a super cute, fun autumn themed math unit for my little ones.  Autumn Math Fun is on sale for only $2.00 through this Sunday!  It has addition and subtraction practice, patterning, a roll and record game and much, much more.  I hope you'll click on over {HERE} and check it out!

Here is a free bonus page for you.  I love to throw in a tracing sheet here and there for little ones to practice their numbers.  I will often use it as part of their homework to reinforce correct number formation and numerical understanding.

Autumn Math Fun Preview
*The numbers 9 and 13 in this preview look crazy, but when you download it as a PDF they are completely in line with the other numbers.  Sorry, Scribd is being silly!

All of this clip art is from Digi Web Studio.  I found them recently and am totally in love... EVERYTHING IS $1!

What's Cooking Wednesdays

I first made these last year, and had been craving them ever since it started to feel like fall.  I finally made them on Sunday and let me tell you they are dangerously good!  They are SO delicious and easy.  They take less than ten minutes to prep but taste like you've been slaving over a hot stove.  They are all at once gooey, crunchy, buttery and almost caramelly (okay, I know that's not a word but I couldn't help myself.

Click on the link above for the recipe.  I halved the recipe, using one apple and one can of crescent rolls.  I also used slightly less butter and served it with Vanilla Bean ice cream.  Let me tell you, they are to die for!

A Few Great Websites

I have to admit it... I'm just a liiiitle bit exhausted and uninspired tonight.  I didn't want all of y'all to think that I had dropped off the face of the planet, so I thought I would pass along a few great websites that I have been using lately.

Barnes and Noble has put together 14 fabulous books read by authors and celebrities in a fun, online format.  This month they added Laura Numeroff reading If You Give a Mouse a Cookie!  Some other highlights are Where the Wild Things Are read by Maurice Sendak, The Kissing Hand read by Audrey Penn, Strega Nona read by Tomie de Paola, and Splish, Splash, Splat! read by Molly Ringwald.  I used this as my listening center today, and the kids went CRAZY over it!

Reagan from Tunstall's Teaching Tidbits sent this to me last week after my post about Indoor Recess.  It is a great, FREE website with 30 minute interactive exercise videos for little ones.  I haven't shown it to the little ones yet, but I did skim an episode myself and I loved it!

Of course, I have been totally obsessed with Pinterest for a few months now, but I thought it would be fun to share a few fabulous ideas that I have found there in the last week.

 This Montessori inspired sand table is not only fun, it helps children investigate, learn about the world around them and problem solve.  I will definitely be trying a smaller version of this in my classroom this year!

 Simple, perfect, easy peasy way to teach the difference between b and d, as well as p and g!

Homemade puffy paint made from ingredients you already have in your cupboard.  One word: perfect!

All of these ideas can be found on my Pinterest "Lessons and Activities" board.

Indoor Recess

At my school, Kindergarten teachers are responsible for their students' recess.  That means that when it's torrential downpouring, snowing like crazy or just plain nasty outside, I am left with 22 very disappointed little faces looking at me, just DYING to get that energy out.

I played this video for the kids today, and it was a MIRACLE!  They begged for more, and loved seeing the kids on the video acting out the moves.  Best of all, they were exhausted after doing this dance three times in a row!  If your district blocks YouTube, like mine does, try my sneaky trick of playing it once on your laptop at home, putting your laptop to sleep and then just hitting play.  It works like a charm (without internet or anything!).  You can also try finding videos on Teacher Tube, or embedded on other sites.

Another favorite indoor recess activity is using colorful scarves to dance and move with.  Sometimes I play fun music and just let them do their thing.  Other times, I play this great "Musical Scarves" CD because it gives direct instructions and creative ideas.  My favorite is "Under the Sea" (I STILL want to be The Little Mermaid!) because the voice on the CD tells them to pretend their scarves are fish, to sway like seaweed, etc.  So fun!  Many times we will make a "scarf parade" and march around the classroom so that they have a little more space to move.  I the scarves and CD {HERE} but you might be able to find them cheaper on another website.

 A third lifesaving activity is to make an obstacle course in the classroom.  I set up three or four hula hoops on the floor to jump to (we often pretend that they are lilypads), a tunnel to crawl through, river stones to walk across and this amazing hopscotch rug to hop down.  I put them in a different order each time to make it new and exciting.  While about four kids go through the obstacle course, the others are dancing on the rug.  If you are thinking to yourself "WOW, this lady is crazy to have all of this going on in her classroom!" you just might be right.  BUT I have to remind myself that not only do they need to move their bodies to release energy, but they need to practice balance and tons of other gross motor skills.  Also they get very good at helping you set up and break down the course.  Also, who can resist when four year olds clap their hands and say "YAY!!!!"

 I would LOVE to know what you fabulous teachers are doing for indoor recess in your classrooms.  Please feel free to comment... I am always looking for more great ideas!

More Great Deals!

Ann Taylor Loft is having Teacher Appreciation Week!  They are giving us 25% off from today until Sunday, October 16th.  All you have to do is show your ID.  Don't worry, I am not affiliated with them in any way... I just love their clothes!

Today is the LAST day for 20% off of everything in my TPT store.  I am super proud of my new Fire Safety unit.  I hope that you'll come on over and check it out!


I am beyond thrilled that I finally finished the Fire Safety unit that I have been working on for WEEKS!  I am so proud of this unit... there are so many fun games, resources and materials for the little ones to use.   Also, the Scrappin Doodles clip art is to die for, if I do say so myself!

This unit is perfect for October, which you probably know is Fire Safety Month.  I can't wait to start doing these activities with my little ones tomorrow.  We are also going on a field trip to the fire station, which is a PERFECT way to culminate a fire safety unit!

Some of the activities are: mini word wall, ABC matching game, sight word game (with all 52 Dolch sight words, plus blank cards to add your own), measuring, patterning, numeral matching, scissor handling and much, much more!

This unit, as well as EVERYTHING in my little TPT store is 20% off until tomorrow night, so hurry on by and scoop yours up.  I promise it will be worth it!  Click {HERE} to check it out.  Enjoy!

Eric Carle has a New Book!

I have to admit something... I am OBSESSED with Eric Carle!  I have all of his books, force my little ones to love his beautiful illustrations and even decorated the walls of my classroom with Eric Carle wall decals.  Even my BFF is in love with him.  SO, you can imagine my surprise when I was driving along yesterday listening to public radio (yes, I am a dork!) and heard an interview with Eric Carle about his new book!  I almost had to pull over!

The title is The Artist who Painted a Blue Horse.  This is Amazon's review:
"Every child has an artist inside them, and this vibrant new picture book from Eric Carle will help let it out. The artist in this book paints the world as he sees it, just like a child. There's a red crocodile, an orange elephant, a purple fox and a polka-dotted donkey. More than anything, there's imagination. Filled with some of the most magnificently colorful animals of Eric Carle's career, this tribute to the creative life celebrates the power of art."

Isn't that sweet?  I love how he encourages the little ones to be unique and creative, and to paint the world the way THEY see it.  You can read an excerpt of the book {HERE} and listen to the interview {HERE}.  My favorite part is when he says that every time he writes a new book he says it will be his last, but he just can't stop writing and illustrating for children.  How adorable!

While we are on the topic of new books, I have been DYING to get my hands on a copy of Laura Numeroff's If You Give a Dog a Donut.  I am totally obsessed with her too.  I'm trying to make myself wait until both of these lovelies are in paperback.  Has anyone read this one yet?  Little Literacy Learners posted a link where you can hear Laura Numeroff reading If You Give a Mouse a Cookie.  I just listened to this myself... it's great!  I will definitely be doing this with the little ones next week!

I'm Having a HUGE Sale!

In honor of a beautiful long Columbus Day weekend, I am having a sale... 20% off EVERYTHING!  Click {HERE} to visit my TPT store.  

Enjoy, and I hope that you all are having a fantastic weekend.

October Currently

I am linking up with Oh Boy Fourth Grade.  Here is what I am currently up to:

The blogs I am stalking are How Does She, Cookies & Cups and here is my Pinterest page.

More Teacher Discounts!

I am pretty sure that this is a brand new discount... 15% off at Banana Republic when you show your teacher ID.

In case you don't know, you can also receive 15% at Ann Taylor Loft and J Crew.

Do you know of any other fabulous teacher discounts?  Let us know!