Archive for the ‘Edna’s Blog: Thinking Out Loud’ Category

End of the Year: We’re Moving On!

Friday, May 31st, 2013

Have you ever noticed how busy it gets this time of year?  There are a couple of holidays (Mother’s Day and Memorial Day) celebrated in May.  It’s planting season in many parts of the country.  Field trips spring up like May flowers.  And, of course, it’s the end of the school year for many children.  Families must rev-it-up to keep up with all of the special programs that occur from band concerts to end-of-the-year picnics.  And then there are graduation celebrations!

I admit to enjoying the pomp and circumstance from the diplomas to the caps and gowns.  At Little Folks Discovery Center we thought it was very special to graduate from Kindergarten to First Grade so we celebrated big time!  The kids wore gowns of  yellow, blue, and red — quite a memorable sight!  There must be thousands of photos floating around out there.  I was reminded of all this when writing a lesson plan unit titled “End of the Year:  We’re Moving On.”  Here are a couple of the cover pages.  Check out the preview pages on Teachers Pay Teachers if you get a chance.

Thanks for reading, I’ll see you in June!

End of the Year 150x150 End of the Year:  Were Moving On!

End Of The Year: Were Moving On A 36 page theme packed with LITERACY activities — an 8 page MEMORY Book and a monster at school story.  The unit contains tons of activities from sorting and counting to writing and reading. There are autograph pages, compliment coupons, and summer club ideas.                            It’s a Graduation Celebration!

You can find it at
End of the Year 18 150x150 End of the Year:  Were Moving On!

Celebrate Earth Day with Reading Rockets!

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

It’s Earth Day!  And celebrating with kids is so much fun because they get it!

If you haven’t been to the Reading Rockets website: you’ll be amazed at the way they integrate literacy with all kinds of subjects.  And Earth Day is no different.

They are featuring an article titled “Five Literacy-Based Ways to Celebrate Earth Day with Your Child”  It is also in Spanish and is downloadable as a pdf or may be viewed online.

And this is their first suggestion:  ”Read a book! Dr. Seuss’s book The Lorax may be one of the best known children’s books about the environment and trees. Read The Lorax together. Talk about the difference between the land before and after the Once-ler arrived. Discuss ways the Lorax spoke for the trees and why it’s important to speak up for something you believe in.”

Have a great celebration!

Literacy Centers, Science Experiments, Free Stuff!

Friday, March 15th, 2013

WE  are proud to be a part of Teachers Paying Teachers!

TpT is a market site dedicated to sharing the infinite number of creative ideas teachers have.  From butterflies to  dinosaurs,  gingerbread men to movement activities, you’ll find it all at this site.

On the site, our store is called Lickety Split Lessons and Stuff.  But the quickest way to find us is through the link:

To order things (and there are plenty of FREE things) you will need to register on the TpT site:  They ask what grade you teach (even if you don’t teach you are welcome)  just put in the ages you are interested in) your name and email address.  There are tens of thousands of teachers buying and selling on this site.  It is HUGE!

On TpT you can get information on everything from cooking to teaching Chinese, from teaching toddlers and preschoolers to teaching college classes.

Writing curriculum and traveling around the country giving workshops for teachers was one of my favorite things to do in years past.  I am so excited to be a part of this great communty where all you have to do is click on a link, order what you want (remember there are tons of FREE things that will help you daily in your classroom management or with your lessons plans)  and instantly what you ordered appears in your downloads folder on your computer.

This weekend I will be adding Touchy Feely, A Sensory Unit that is, well, very touchy feely!  Bring Your Teddy To School and Bubble Bonanza:  Science, Literacy, Art and Movement are popular this time of year.

Just as soon as I have a moment, I will be adding a page or two from these books on our subscriber extras page because we appreciate you!

Thanks for reading and have a Fantastic (Almost Spring) weekend!





Dr Seuss — Celebrate his Birthday March 2nd!

Wednesday, February 27th, 2013

Three Dr. Seuss Facts

Green Eggs and Ham book 129x150 Dr Seuss    Celebrate his Birthday March 2nd!1.  Dr. Seuss was born on March 2, 1904.

2.  One in four American children receive a Dr. Seuss book as their first book.

2.  Green Eggs and Ham has only 50 words!

Write a book using only 50 words with your child or children in your class.  Could you do it?


“Our Hearts Are Broken, Our Spirits Are Strong”

Wednesday, February 27th, 2013

Light og Hope1 150x150 Our Hearts Are Broken, Our Spirits Are Strong

I saw these words, “Our hearts are broken, our spirits are strong,” written on a blackboard

in pink chalk in Sandy Hook Connecticut.

Like I imagine many of you, I was going to a holiday party on Friday night.  The unthinkable had happened.   I had been glued to the TV for hours trying to make sense of the images I saw.  I didn’t want to go to the party.  I couldn’t imagine joining in festivities on such an occasion.  But I was reminded of the strength of the human spirit when I witnessed Emily Parker’s father speak with unshakable  courage, grace, and sensitivity through unimaginable grief.  ”Let not this event define us,” he said.

I’m thinking of all of you today as you enter classrooms filled with adorable, innocent children.  I pray for strength and wisdom for each of you as a tiny hand slips inside of yours, as a quiet one slides onto your lap, as a mischief-maker acts out just a bit.  For this is the language of children, and you are the ones listening.

 Comforting Children in English

Comforting Children in Spanish

Helping Children Regain Their Emotional Safety After a Tragedy


Buzzing Around “B” Words

Wednesday, February 27th, 2013

Let’s face it.  Some ways of teaching are just not developmentally appropriate especially when it comes to young children.  Children learn by playing, by engaging their senses, by interacting and doing lots of hands-on things.  I’m amazed when I look on the internet to find so many “lessons” that are stuck in paper and pencil tasks.  The kind that makes a little kid  tune out, cradle his head on his arms and lay his head on the table.

You know the type of circle this and put an X on that type of “worksheet” I’m talking about.

We’ve learned so much about learning styles in recent years.  Connecting the mind and body in kinesthetic fashion is so important.  But I will admit it’s not always easy.  I recently designed a Buzzing Around B Words activity that helps with letter recognition but also gets kids up and moving around.  It’s by no means perfect, but I did feel a bit smug realzing that it was a cut above a task that calls for a circle or an X from kids who are still struggling with holding a crayon or marker. 

We’ll put it on our web site and post it in our FREE things for parents and teachers.  You can take a look at it and hopefully leave me some feedback on what you think of it and how it was received by your kids.


The Best Gift of All

Monday, December 31st, 2012

Fairy dust.  That’s what I saw a four-year-old give to his mom on Christmas Eve.  The fairy dust was in a little plastic bag––nothing fancy––but it was tied with a red silk bow.  When his mom opened the bag and peered inside, she found dirt and glitter carefully mixed together to form the magic potion.

The boy gave his mom other gifts that he no doubt selected for her––a scarf and hat from rainbow colored yarn, and a new pen.  But the smile on his face from ear-to-ear revealed that this dust was the best that he had to offer.  The absolute best.  This gift, he knew somehow, with his limited understanding of how the world works, was the gift she would always treasure.  This gift would move from drawer to drawer and closet to closet and house to house until the boy  became a parent.  And then he would begin receiving from his own children the best gift of all.


Books Concerning Difficult Times

Wednesday, December 19th, 2012

I just ordered a book that arrived in my mailbox yesterday.  It’s about talking with children during traumatic times .  I’m going to review it, and if it’s a good one, we’ll give it to someone

“out there” who would like to have it.  I won’t share the name of it, yet.  If any of you have read a very good book on the topic, please share it with me.   Thanks

Clove-studded Oranges

Monday, December 10th, 2012

Did you ever  stick cloves in oranges?  If you didn’t, you’ve just got to try it.  And you’ve got to try it with kids.

I still remember going into my grandmother’s attic and finding these pomanders hanging all over the place.  There was a big trunk filled with old dolls, crocheted doiles, letters and other memorabilia.  It truly was like a treasure chest to me.  And these clove-studded oranges were tucked inside so that when you opened the trunk the smell was delicious.

All you need for this activity is oranges and cloves and a ribbon for hanging.  When finished you can hang them in your closet to keep things smelling fresh and fragrant.

To begin, loop a ribbon in the top and stick it in with a clove, then just stick, stick, stick.  It’s that easy.  You can make patterns in the orange or cover every square inch.

Makes a nice gift this time of year!




It’s the Day After Halloween!

Thursday, November 1st, 2012

It’s the day after Halloween and that can only mean one thing––I’ll be packing my Dr. Seuss Cat in the Hat, beautifully striped hat, away for one more year.

One toddler (dressed as a bumble bee) could barely contain her excitement as she pointed to the hat, saying over and over, “The Cat in The Hat, The Cat in The Hat.”

And she was barely old enough to talk!  Come to think of it, with that kind of adulation I could wear that hat every day and feel pretty darn good about myself!

                                                                 It’s amazing how far-reaching  the influence of Dr. Seuss is on children of all ages.