Monday, March 2, 2020

100th Day of School Valentines Candy Shirt

Every time I’m back in an elementary school I’m rocked by a wave of happy nostalgia - so many happy memories of teaching! Teaching is truly a passion for me and like an athlete revisiting his old stadium, field, or court, it comes flooding back the second I step in the doors and remember being at the top of my game with an audience of mini-super-fans. They were the reason I loved what I did. Them, and my love for all the subjects and all things learning. Those little learners made my day, every single day, five days a week, 36 weeks a year. 

It’s been so fun to have Zoe be in school this year learning Chinese and yet it ignites a flame in me that burns to be back in a classroom teaching and itching to be a fly on the wall following her learning adventures. I feel a little sheepish to admit that I always leave her school scheming ways to land a part-time job teaching art or music or science or something and I may have even contacted her school administrators and my old ones about such opportunities without telling Colby first. 🤫 Shhhh.

Alas, I know the time isn’t right with my health endeavors and everything we have going on, but it’s fun to conspire and relive those glory days for a minute. I've decided maybe I'll fuel some of my unspent passion here into the blog! :) Thanks for being here and reading! 

Today was the 100th day of school in Zoe’s kindergarten class. I had signed up to volunteer and Zoe was allowed to decorate a shirt or hat to wear for it and I completely spaced both until mid-way through the morning! (Thank goodness for afternoon kindergarten in this instance). Fortunately I’m pretty quick on my toes and we already had an idea tumbling in our brains and were able to pull something together. 

If you, like us, happen to have these few easy supplies on hand you can whip out a Valentines- meets-100th-day candy-heart-filled-dispenser-shirt too :) 

What you'll need: 
  • White or Plain Colored T-Shirt
  • 1 or 2 Sheets of Craft Foam or Felt
  • 1 Giant Googly Eye (we got ours around Halloween and repurposed it for this project)
  • Applesauce Squeeze Twist Lid
  • 1 quarter
  • 100 Conversation Hearts
  • Scissors
  • Hot Glue
Assembly was pretty straight forward. We googled a picture of a candy machine to get an idea of the shape we liked. Then we cut out the craft foam, painted the applesauce lid gold, counted out hearts and placed them in the googly eye to see how many fit. We fit about 75 inside, scattered the rest around and glued everything in place with hot glue.

I reminded Zoe that this shirt probably wouldn't last forever and not to melt down at school if something fell off or fell apart. Fortunately it held up and is still in tact today, a few weeks later now, although it obviously hasn't taken a ride through a wash. 

Once I got Zoe out the door, looking adorable in her hand-crafted shirt (it took us less than an hour to whip together) I had 45 minutes to figure out what activity I was going to do in her classroom for the 100th day celebration rotations. I had intended to exercise that morning and then the last minute remembrance of her 100-day shirt hijacked that plan, so deciding to combine purposes and exercise with 27 kindergarteners instead was easy! Boy did I get a good workout too! I whipped out my computer, crafted a quick plan, stayed in my exercise clothes and headed to the school. 

My goal in designing most learning activities (based on what I learned in graduate school) is to engage as many senses and learning styles as possible, so that's what I went for here. I wanted physical learning (hands-on, gross motor, strength & flexibility), plus wanted to throw in some literacy with reading, writing, repetition and sentence structure, and a little math. Some deep breathing, mindfulness, and spatial awareness were a bonus. 

The kids loved it. I loved it. And I felt especially happy about the 100 exercises we did (well 500 for me after 5 rotations! And yes I was sore the next day) since the kids made froot loop necklaces in another rotation and got handed several treats as they were leaving. 

Click here if you want to print this FREE activity for 100 exercises.

Please check out my Teachers Pay Teachers store! I have lots of amazing products for parents, educators and homeschoolers - teaching and creating are my passion and I love sharing with you! If you feel so inspired please pin or share anything you find here.

Sending you lots of love friends!

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