Monday, July 14, 2014

Teaching Kiddos to Read One Cupcake at a Time!



Yesterday I uploaded my Alphabet Soup freebie onto Teachers Pay Teachers and today I uploaded my Cupcake Shop Word Family Sort. You may be thinking, "Wow! She's really churning those learning activities out!" Not really. Truthfully, this particular one took me much longer than it should. You see when I began toying with the idea of making learning activities to sell on Teachers Pay Teachers I didn't have a clue what went into creating a learning activity and then selling it. 

I had been making my own Reading and Math centers for ten years and though my students liked the activities I made, I really didn't know there was a better way. I found this fabulous Cupcake Creator Kit from Cloudstreet Lab.  I spent three days creating unique cupcakes and finally managed to narrow it down to 30 creations (I know, REALLY?!). 

After the cupcakes were created, I started working on the activity using Microsoft Office Word as I always had. However this was a very large file and as I started layering in those PNG graphics and text boxes. the file got slower to work with. Pushing those little cupcakes into the spot I wanted them to go became a challenge. I was getting frustrated and worried that my creative project would never reach fruition but I trudged (slowly) on. 

Then one night after working for an hour, I couldn't get the file to save no matter what I tried. Frustrated, I hit the off button on my computer. When I tried to open it up, it said there was a file error and it would not open. Can we say "Nooooooooo?!" I was devastated. All that work. Gone.

Who would have thought those beautiful cupcakes could make me so sad?  Luckily, I had emailed the file to myself two days earlier because my spidey sense said something might happen to the file. I lost some work but at least all was not lost. 

Perplexed and determined this would never happen again, I did some research and discovered Microsoft Power Point is the best place to create files of this type. I copied and pasted everything into Power Point. I was back on track and it looks pretty awesome, if I do say so myself. 

So how does it work? Well let me show you: 
Don't those cupcakes look delicious? I am pretty confident about this one. No one may ever buy it but my kinders are going to love it! The whole time I was creating cupcakes, Seth would peek over my shoulder and say, "Ooh Mommy! That one looks delicious! Can I play?" 

The set includes color and B&W game boards and word cards, center recording forms and cut and paste activities. 
If you are interested in buying it or just want to leave me a really encouraging comment (I need that, alot), just click on the picture below. 
Have a great week. 
Peace, Love & Cupcakes!
~Lisa 

My First Teachers Pay Teachers Freebie!

Sooo excited! I just uploaded my first TPT freebie!

This is a learning center I originally created about ten years ago for my kindergarten students. When I decided to do a freebie for Teachers Pay Teachers, I got this one out and started revamping it and beefing it up. I have used this activity with several of my kindergarten groups and they loved it. 

I find it makes it a little more interesting if you put a plastic spoon with it so they can scoop up the picture cards. Doing this adds an extra dimension of fun but you always run the risk of having some industrious little monkey discover he can put the card in the spoon and then when he hits the handle, the card pops up. Of course the little monkey has to share it with all his friends and you can imagine what happens next. I always nip that in the bud by threatening to take away the spoon. I know. I am the fun sucker. 

So if you want to pick up this awesome freebie (is that bragging? Oh well!), click on the cute little button below (or the big one above) and download it. Have an great Monday!
 Click it!