Dinosaurs, Videos & Organization!

Wow we had a great time at Discover the Dinosaurs yesterday! Tons of realistic looking dinosaurs, many photo ops, plus a lot of educational moments. Then of course there were the "fun" activities to add on top of the experience - inflatables, mini golf, face painting, riding a dinosaur, mining for gems etc. There was even a gift shop set up in the middle! Although the prices were a little steep, it was a lot of fun :) Here are some of the highlights:
 My daughter was hamming it up, she is so me!
 All of the kids loved the excavation tables - I am going to add making one of these tables (mini though!) to our summer to-do list!
 The dinosaurs were hungry!
 "Look kids, your teacher is so old she was around when the dinosaurs were!"
 The kids also panned for precious gems!
This was my favorite part of the day - seeing the intensity in their faces as they sifted through the rocks!

We also got this Dinosaur Egg for my youngest:

It has provided him with hours of amusement. We talked about what would happen if the egg hatched and it was a carnivore like a T. Rex. At first we would feed him hot dogs, but pretty soon he would move on to our pets, the whole family, and eventually the neighbors. Not a good scenario! Then we hoped that it would be an herbivore and Joshua could just spend his days gathering leaves and grass to feed it....until it got too big and trashed our living room! I'm telling you, the story-telling potential of this egg was amazing! We put it in the sink and covered it with water and Joshua gave us a crack by crack update. He could barely sleep last night for excitement. I was a little worried that the dinosaur would not live up to expectations, but when it hatched this morning (assisted by Joshua who just couldn't wait any more!) he was thrilled with the triceratops that came out. So far he has carried it with him all morning and it has been singing and talking and making up all sorts of pretend play scenarios!
Needless to say I am ordering some for our dinosaur unit next year! 

Did I mention that the kids loved their gemstones and have become quite the little rock aficionados? 

They have some rocks that are rough still so we will be buying one of these rock tumblers (which I have always wanted!)

Today we are having a quiet day, the children are organizing and swapping their rocks, Joshua is walking around with his baby dinosaur (who apparently misses his family and is going to go on an adventure to find them!) and my husband is finishing up his bear plaque for his unit commander who is leaving soon:
I think she'll love it when it's all put together!

And so, with everyone effectively occupied, I can play on my computer guilt free!

First up! A linky part at Run! Miss Nelson's Got The Camera!

I've shared a lot of my favorite youtube vids in the past, but I have a couple more that are recent finds:
Not only is this one good for waking up their brains (you cross the midline several times) but it is a great left/right reinforcement!

I wish they had the lower case letter videos too, but this is great for teaching kids to write from the top down!

Hilarious counting song!

Alright, I am off to organize a bit more - I have almost everything inside organized, pretty soon I will have to start bringing in stuff from the garage! I'll leave you with a quick tip for those novelty erasers and pencil boxes! If you check any Dollar Tree or Target Dollar Spot you'll find these great novelty erasers - in many different sizes, shapes and quantities. Snap them up! They are perfect for counting, sorting and patterning. This is one of my "I'm done! What do I do now?" activities. 

When kids are finished early, they can go over and get a math box and then "play" with the erasers - making sets, patterns, counting etc. The bets part is that this activity comes naturally to them - generally I only have to teach them how to use the erasers once and they find the tasks so engaging that I don't see very much off task behavior. The other best part is that at the end of Back-to-School season there are usually tons of pencil boxes that go on clearance! For some reason the stores always order way more boxes than they can sell. This means that the boxes typically go down to 10 cents a piece! Grab up as many as you need to house all of your fun erasers, and while you're there grab the cardboard box that the pencil boxes come in at the store. Now you have an easy way to store the boxes neatly in your classroom!


I am off to blog stalk now - have a great Sunday!

9 Rustle Up A Response!:

Miss Nelson said... Reply to comment

Thanks for sharing. Your videos are all new to me! I love finding new ones.
Have a great day.

Lisa R. said... Reply to comment

I'm so glad you posted about the video that shows the kids how to print their letters the right way. That drives me bonkers every year! And those dinosaur eggs...oh my cuteness... I am pinning away right now! Thanks for sharing! :)
Learning Is Something to Treasure

Jessica Ann Stanford said... Reply to comment

I used to have a rock tumbler!!! It didn't look that dandy but now I'm off to find one!!

PS I hope you'll blog stalk me... I'm having a giveaway :)

Jessica Stanford
Mrs. Stanford's Class Blog

Cupcake said... Reply to comment

Looks like a fun day! :)
A Cupcake for the Teacher

Just Wild About Teaching said... Reply to comment

i love the patterns idea..your page looks great.. thanks for entering my giveaway girl!

Just Wild About Teaching

Miss Squirrels said... Reply to comment

Love that you had a guilt free blog stalking afternoon-
And I see those erasers all the time in the 97 cent part at walmart- I NEVER thought to use them as counters and stuff- you're such a smartie!!!

☞Go NuTTY with ME!


Cindy Foreman said... Reply to comment

Love the organizing idea for the mini erasers! I always see those little erasers and keep thinking "There has to be a way to use those" never even thought of patterning and/or counters!! Thanks for the idea!


Elizabeth said... Reply to comment

Looks like a fun day! Love the idea of the erasers for counting, sorting and patterns. Brilliant!


Fun in Room 4B

School Sparks Renee said... Reply to comment

Looks like you had a terrific day! The eraser idea is such a good one, since they are fun to hold and they are cheap and colorful! And they don't take up a lot of space or make a lot of noise! Perfect!! Renee