Five Little Friends - Free for Friday!


I just made this fun little counting rhyme activity.

Click HERE to find it!

It is an illustrated counting rhyme that will help you teach numbers to 5 in forwards and backwards counting order. We love rhymes in the classroom! Not only do they help brighten up some boring lessons, but when you ask your students to invent actions to accompany them, they can  help your students with:
- speech development
- clear pronunciation
- dramatisation
- co-ordinating hand/body movement with words
- communication
- be creative and inventive
- vocabulary
- participation in group activities


Graphics Blog

Graphics From the Pond
 
 
Do you like to keep up to date with what is happening with Graphics From the Pond?
We finally added some content to our little sister blog.
 
Check it out HERE.

A Free Doodle Frame

Download this pretty frame for FREE here. If you would like to use it in a commercial project or file, please just add the credit:

Graphics From the Pond http://frompond.blogspot.com

to your file somewhere.
 
 
I have just listed this set at TpT if you are interested in seeing more doodle frames!
 
 


Spider Cards and Some Free Spider Frames



I have had spiders and webs on my mind - I just listed this new packet in my TpT store and it was a whole lot of fun to make! I started making it as something for my daughter to use, but it quickly turned into a From the Pond file! It is great for students that already have a good understanding of how to read and write cvc words, but need to be challenged some more. There is no picture clue to help with the word and the letters are jumbled in the web or leaf.



First, we printed and laminated all the cards. I cut, laminated and cut again - giving a complete sealed edge around each card. I rounded off the corners so they were not sharp.



Students have to look at the three letters in the web, and determine the word 'spider' is trying to make in the letter boxes.


Once laminated, your students can write, using a dry erase marker, the word on each card.



Students will have to attend to the print and look at the shape and size of each letter to give them clues.



Once each card is complete, your students can 'wipe' the word away ready for another student to use the card.





Or, if only one student is using the set, they can write all the words before wiping clean.



After my daughter completed all the cards, we talked about rhyming words as well!





In the classroom, I would keep all the cards together (with the cover page from the file) in a clear plastic document wallet.

I would also laminate a 'master' copy of the worksheet and keep it with the cards.

I've included a few cut-n-paste worksheets for a follow up activity.





I love using Write n Wipe cards with children just learning to read and write

because:

1. They LOVE them and so LOVE engaging in the activity
2. Markers are great for students learning to write as little pressure has to exerted with the pen to achieve a good clear line, and they can focus on other things, like letter formation and spelling
3. They provide a simple, fuss free centre of small group activity
4. They are perfectly child-sized
5. They are inexpensive to make and last a long time
6. You can turn just about any 'worksheet' into a write'n'wipe - I love using worksheets that we have done before, the students LOVE to revise and consolidate something they have done before



Update:
We created a companion set of worksheets in our 'fix the mix' style. 

These worksheets are the perfect first step to help your students learn to read and write cvc words. Students have to segment the phonemes in the cvc words to complete the page. 

Each of the 20 worksheets features 4 different cvc words. Students will cut out three 'mixed up' letters and manoeuvre them into different positions, sounding-out the word as they attempt to make it


Find them at TpT HERE


Thanks so much for stopping by t o learn more about our printables. 

Font Therapy - Letterbox Fonts




I just made these fonts to help teachers make worksheets and resources with 'letterboxes' - so students can write a letter in each box. See them at TpT HERE


Dress Up Your Store

Technology tip Tuesday got me started by showing you how to use Paint to make your own store banner.  

I have taken things a step further by making some backgrounds to help you make a basic banner for your TeacherspayTeachers store.

Banners make your store look attractive and appealing and you can add new one to advertise special sales and feature products.


There are many ways to do this, but my tutorial will primarily help people that have never attempted something like this before or with very limited skills in the area of design on the computer, so I have chosen MS Paint, as most people will have this on their computer. You may have some more advanced programs that will allow you to do some fancy effects.

I am on PC, so I apologise if you are on MAC. But you MAC users always seem to know what you are doing anyhow!



1. First download this set from TpT. It is free! It includes some basic background. Plain color + a dashed edge design.
Here is what the dashed edge looks like...


Or this chevron pack is just $2.


2. You will download a ZIPPED folder from TpT. Save it first to a folder on your computer. Remember where you saved it!
You need to extract all the individual files, by unzipping the folder.

3. Once unzipped, you will see a list of files in the new folder that is created (your zipped folder will remain on your computer, and the unzipped one will be additional).

4. So that you can see what they look like, rather than a list of file names, click on Medium or Large Icons on your View Options (this is a drop down menu on the top right of my screen - I am on a PC). It just changes the way you view your files. The files will remain intact and not change.


5. You will now be able to see the files as icons, and choose the one you would like for your store.

6. Before you start making your banner you need to make a NEW copy of the banner file. This way, if you make any errors, you will always have the original file preserved and you can start again. Or if you want to make a new banner in the future, you can start fresh with the original file.

To make the new copy, right click on the banner of your choice, select copy.

7. Click anywhere on your screen on this page, and right click again. Click Paste.

8. You should now see an new copy of the file you chose. It will have -Copy written after the file name.


9. Right click on this file, and click on Rename.



10. Type in the field that appears to give the file a new name, e.g MyStoreBanner


11. Now the exciting bit begins! Right click on this newly named file. Go to 'Open With' and then select PAINT.

12. The Paint program will open and you will see the banner. You are now about to start making changes to the .png file you downloaded from me. You are working on the actual .png file. Do not change the banner size, the dimensions are exactly what is needed to upload to TpT. You can add text or graphics to the inside of the bordered edge.


14. Select the Text tool (capital A) to add text to your banner.


15. Select a colour from the colour panel, a font type from the fonts display. Click and drag from where you want your text, to form a text box. Then type away.

Be sure to select a font that you have a commercial licence to use. For example, if you want to use a Kevin and Amanda font, they sell a commercial licence as well. You won't be able to give the credit they require to use their 'free' fonts, on your store button/banner - it just won't fit!


16. SAVE the changes you have made to the .png banner file.




12. Now its time to upload it to your TeacherspayTeachers store. Go to your Dashboard. Select DRESS UP YOUR STORE.


13. Click on BROWSE and locate your saved banner from the folder you saved it to. Here you can see the one that is already loaded in my store.



Enter a link. The banner is clickable. This means that when a buyer clicks on it, it needs to have a web address embedded in the picture to take the buyer to. TpT has a rule that this MUST be a page on the TpT website (rightfully so!).

Choose either the home page of your store, or one of your favourite products. Copy and paste the URL (of the page of your choice) from your web browser and into this space.

It will take a day or so to get approval for you banner, so you will not see it straight away.

I hope that may have helped you create your own banner... or other wonderful creations with PAINT!

Please note that my new 'Dress Up Your Store' packs include files to create sidebar buttons for your TpT store, in matching patterns and colours. You can create this in the exact same way as your button with PAINT.
This post has been part of Teacher Week over at Blog Hoppin. Hop over there to take a look at the other great technology posts!

How to Make a TPT Basic Store Banner Using MS Paint

It's technology tip Tuesday!

I have written a tutorial for how to make a very basic banner for your TeacherspayTeachers store.

I have had so many requests to help people create their own banners.

There are many ways to do this, but my tutorial will primarily help people that have never attempted something like this before or with very limited skills in the area of design on the computer.

Hopefully you will have Microsoft PAINT on your computer. If you cannot locate it directly from your start button , try START, ALL PROGRAMS, ACCESSORIES, PAINT.

'Accessories' will be a little yellow folder in your program list.



1. Find Paint on your computer and open


2. Once Paint is open, from the drop down menu, select 'Properties'



3. Select 'Pixels' and add the exact dimensions from TpT 706x90 pixels


4. Select the rectangle from the shapes menu






5. Select a colour and then click and drag to make a rectangle. Click from the top right corner. Keep the rectangle within or just on the edge of your document.





6. You can now fill your rectangle shape. Choose a colour from the selection panel (this will show up as Colour 1). Click the fill tool. Then click on your rectangle. The rectangle will fill with your chosen colour.




7. Now its time to add text. Click on the text button, it's a capital A. Be sure to select a font that you have a commercial licence to use. For example, if you want to use a  Kevin and Amanda font, they sell a commercial licence as well. You won't be able to give the credit they require to use their 'free' fonts, on your blog button - it just won't fit!





8. Click and drag to create a text box and then type your name. Make sure the 'Transparent' button is selected and that you have chosen the font colour that you would like to use.


9. Add some details if you wish. I used the circle shape tool to create polka dots on this one. You can also copy and paste clipart into paint as well. Be sure to use .png clipart files, as they will have a transparent background. Most likely, any clipart you put in, you will need to resize to make them fit. To do this, save an additional copy of your clipart, so your original is preserved. Open your clipart file in Paint, go to 'resize' and make it smaller (you may need to use trial and error to see what size you need... I always use the percentage tool, and reduce to 25% for example).

You will also need to check the terms of use of your clipart before you use it for a banner/logo. For example, the clipart that I sell at Graphics From the Pond is NOT  to be used for a banner/logo without permission. Just email me or your designer of choice and ask them if you can have permission to use it in this way. You most likely will be allowed!

10. When you are done, choose SAVE AS from your menu. Save it as a PNG picture. It will be crisper on the screen that a JPEG.

11. Give your banner a file name and save it in a folder on  your computer.

12. Now its time to upload it to your TeacherspayTeachers store. Go to your Dashboard. Select DRESS UP YOUR STORE.

13. Click on BROWSE and locate your saved banner from the folder you saved it to. Here you can see the one that is already loaded in my store.

Enter a link. The banner is clickable. This means that when a buyer clicks on it, it needs to have a web address embedded in the picture to take the buyer to. TpT has a rule that this MUST be a page on the TpT website (rightfully so!).

Choose either the home page of your store, or one of your favourite products. Copy and paste the URL (of the page of your choice) from your web browser and into this space.

It will take a day or so to get approval for you banner, so you will not see it straight away.

I hope that may have helped you create your own banner... or other wonderful creations with PAINT!

Monday Must Haves!

I am linking up with Blog Hoppin for a fun 'Teacher Week' of linky blog posts!



For 'Must Have Monday' I have come up with a couple of things I could not live without as a teacher! It was hard to narrow down, and I really had to think about things that I use here at home, as I am on leave at the moment and all my 'classroom' stuff is packed neatly away.



I cannot function without Post-it notes, both in the classroom and at home when I am doing my documentation. I love all sorts and colours and especially love the 'pop up' notes, which go in a dispenser, like the apple one shown here. I will do a post one day on a million and one ways to use them in the classroom... I think I have covered them all at one time or another!

My 'binder' is my other great love. Yes, hubby is number one, binder number two... he he.


I LOVE to bind everything! Don't get me wrong, I love a loose leaf folder, and have everything in folders while I am using them in the classroom. At the end of each term (ten weeks), I get everything out of the folder, run it through the photocopier (to keep a school copy) and then bind myself a copy to keep at home.


You see, after 12 years of teaching I was beginning to run out of room to keep binders... just too many and TOOOOOO heavy! And DO NOT get me started on how they flip flop all over the shelf. I got my binder and all the binding equipment from Officeworks. It was what I tell my husband is a BWI. A Big WISE Investment. He he!


I line up all my bound-documents in magazine holders that I got from the delicious kikki K! I like to access my programs, planners and assessment documentation from past years.



My local Westfield has a kikki K and I beg ask nicely for gift vouchers off family for my birthdays and Christmas. These holders are so pretty, they are a nice teal green colour that didn't show up nice on my phone camera. You can fill them up, and spin them around to reveal this nice plain tall side, so your study looks organised and not all cluttered up with flippy floppy folders ;)


As you can see, there is a little tab on the front. I record the year and pop all my bound-up books in there. I have 12 so far, one for each year of teaching, but I will eventually pack some away as I usually only refer to the last couple of years.


Here is how they look when you spin them back to see the books...As you can see I bind everything from the end of term in a separate book and label it with my label maker. One for my day planner, one for my program, one for my assessment, and one called 'communication' when I am on a job share. It is much easier to cart around four bound books than four big leaver arch folders.


Here is one of my programs from last year. In my program are very detailed units of work for each key learning area and links back to our curriculum documents. A program is like a very detailed day planner.

Another MUST HAVE for me is a set of carry cases (again, from Officeworks). I store all my laminated games and centre activities in these. I am slowly developing one for each strand of English and Mathematics. I like them because they hold enough to cover a unit of work, but not too much to cause an injury when you lift them! The boxes I had previously were just getting way too heavy and awkward to manoeuvre. I keep these at home, as all these resources I have made with items I have purchased myself. I also would just not have the storage room in a classroom for them. I just take into the classroom the activities I need for the week or fortnight.


Inside these carry cases are Marbig document wallets. I like them because they do not have a button or a zip, so they lie very flat against one another. I can then fit more in the carry case! Each document wallet has the equipment for a game or centre activity.



If you would like to see more Teacher Must Haves - hop on over to Blog Hoppin and check out the linky party!