I love Christmas! I love the smell of cinnamon baking in the oven. The cinnamon in our house was from salt dough ornaments, not cookies. We baked about 20 batches of every shape imaginable. They smelled delicious, but tasted “disgusting” according to my husband. They looked so realistic he had to have a bite 🙂
This past year, my mom found a kissing hand cookie cutter. It is the shape of hand with a heart cut out in the middle. It is adorable.
Every morning when my son gets on the school bus we hold up our hands and do the “I love you” sign. He waves through the window and tells my daughter and I, “I love you” through the window. It gets me every time…
So, when we cut out the kissing hand it made perfect sense to make the hand say “I love you!” Everyone got to paint their ornament with their own sense of style and we had “priceless” presents. Guess what everyone is getting for Christmas???
I thought these would be adorable for preschool or kindergarten. What a beautiful memento for parents to hold onto. Now making that many salt dough ornaments is kind of a pain, so I tried to think of an alternative that is not as messy or time consuming.
I traced my daughter’s hand on a piece of foam. You could have the kids decorate the foam to put their own style on it. Cut out the handprint and use a little bit of sticky tape to tack down the two middle fingers. I put a magnet on the back and it is a cute little present. You can dress it up as much or as little as you want. It is a quick and easy way to say, “I love you!”
The recipe I used for the salt dough was:
2 cups flour
1 cup salt
1 cup water
I kept pouring in ground cinnamon until it was the color that I wanted.
Mix the salt and water in a bowl.
Slowly add the water, continually stirring.
Knead the dough until it is smooth and no longer sticky. This took me between 10-15 minutes.
Roll out the dough and use cookie cutters to make your ornaments.
Place dough on cookie sheet and use a tooth pick to widen a hole big enough for a string.
Bake 325 degrees for 1-2 hours. It depends on how think you make your ornaments.
After the ornaments cool, paint and decorate your ornaments.
Varnish the ornaments after they are completely decorated.
String them up and put them on your tree!
Yesterday we got a lot of snow! I’m not that fond of the cold, but I LOVE snow! There was a snow day and my kids spent all day in snowsuits sledding and rolling around in the snow. Fun!
Anyway, I have snowballs on the brain. I have been working on a snowball addition set over the last month. I used part of it as my FB Frenzy product last weekend, but there is so much more.
I am really excited about these games and activities, because they get kids up and moving and having fun. I used them with some of the kids I tutor and they were in love. One of the activities is working on a snowball number line. This allows students to put the numbers in the correct order, all the while discussing greater than/less than. After the number line is built, it allows students to visually and kinesthetically add the numbers. They are physically counting on and moving their bodies the appropriate number of spaces.
Here is our number line that we built together:
We used the anchor chart to demonstrate the addition sentence 5+3 and 3+5. One strategy that we have been working on is counting on from the largest number. We found the largest number with our “Snowy Kid” wand and then physically knocked on the largest number. I’ve found that having students actually “knock” on the number helps to lock the number in their brain. It adds a kinesthetic movement to the addition process.
After knocking on the largest number, we counted on and hopped forward 3 more spaces. We talked about the differences in counting on from the largest number or using the smaller number. The students concluded that both times they came up with the same answer, but they needed to “count on” less spaces when they started with the largest number.
I wanted to have a giveaway to start off my blog with a bang! I am offering your choice of $25 worth of products from my store:
This giveaway will last until December 14th at 12:00 AM.
I hope you will join me in my new adventure 🙂
I am so excited! This weekend is a HUGE weekend for me. It is the beginning of my brand new blog and the December Facebook Frenzy. The FB Frenzy is an amazing event, where you can hop from FB page to FB page and download freebies from a bunch of amazing teachers. This time around the loops are separated by grade and subject. My freebie is part of the 1st grade Science/Math. Don’t miss this fantastic event! I spent part of my Friday and I plan to spend today downloading and sifting through all my goodies 🙂 My page is: https://www.facebook.com/DifferentiationStation
Here is the map for the 1st Grade Science/Math: