Tuesday, April 22, 2014

It’s not delivery… It’s Cardboard! Pizza Craft for Daycares

clip_image002Throw a Pretend Pizza Party for your students with this quick and easy craft from Nikkie at Apple Tree Prep! All you need is cardboard, scissors, glue or a glue stick, and different colors of construction paper to represent the toppings.

Depending on the age of your students, you may need to prepare the toppings and crust of the pizza ahead of time. If students are capable of cutting on their own let them prepare the toppings themselves. This will give their pizza a unique look and provide them with some extra cutting practice too!

The cardboard should be cut into a triangle shape to resemble a pizza slice. You can make the pizza slices any size you would like. Give each student a slice and have them write their name on the bottom. Now slices are ready to be flipped over and covered with toppings.


Toppings can include your typical pizza toppings, like cheese and pepperoni, or you can let your students get creative by adding anything they want. They might get a little silly with their topping combinations, but the good news is that you don’t have to eat these pizzas!

If you decide to use glue instead of glue sticks you may want to remind students that a small dab of glue is the perfect amount for each topping. If not, you will need to include some time for the glue to dry before playing with the pizzas. You could say you are putting them in the oven while you wait for them to dry.

Once the glue is dry, students can take turns serving each other slices or open a pretend pizzeria where they create new pizzas and topping combinations! They will love showing off their creations!clip_image005

You can share your Craft Ideas with us too by following us on Twitter, Pinterest or Facebook. Just send us a tweet, a pin or leave us a comment with a picture of your craft. You can also share your ideas by commenting down below. We love to hear from you!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Plastic Easter Eggs Game Ideas


Easter is quickly approaching and students are in need of some new learning games and activities as the year draws to an end. We have some quick and easy ideas to share with you that are sure to be “egg-cellent” for your students!


Kids love those colorful, plastic Easter eggs and now teachers will too! They are a fun and inexpensive way to create games and learning activities for the spring season! You will need the eggs that can be opened and split completely in half. Any size, color, and even shape would be great for these activities. You can find the eggs at any local grocery store around Easter time for a low price.

clip_image003Our first egg activity is perfect for little ones who are learning their colors! Begin by taking as many eggs as you would like and splitting them in two. Eggs can be placed on the floor, on a table or on any flat surface. We suggest placing them on the floor if you are going to have a large group working at the same time and a table for smaller groups or individual work. Mix up the halves until there is a good mix of colors. Now have your students rematch up the eggs to their missing half. You could also have students separate the full eggs by color into baskets or trays or on top of a piece of matching colored construction paper after finding their missing pieces.

Another fun idea for the little ones is an alphabet matching game with upper case and lower case letters. Simply add the uppercase letter on one half of the egg and the lower case on the other half. Students will then need to match up the letters to give each egg one upper case half and one lower case half of each letter. Letters can be added in permanent marker or with alphabet stickers.


Not challenging enough for your class? Here are a few ideas to take it to the next level!

Write different words that can be formed into contractions onto each egg half. For example, “can” on one half and “not” on the other. Place the contraction inside on a piece of paper. When they open their egg they find the answer, “can’t”.

The same concept can be used for math problems as well. Put a number on each egg half and have students add, subtract, multiply or divide the numbers. You can match these up ahead of time and provide the answer inside for them or just let students match up the numbers and egg colors to create different problems to solve.

Try out one of these Egg Games and let us know what you think! Your students should be “egg-static” about the new classroom games!

Multicultural paper and art supplies for your students


You may be surprised to find out that children seek out their individual identity as young as pre-school to early elementary school ages. Children understand the concept of being validated or considered to be normal at an early age. Physiologists have shown that activities such as in class art projects are the best ways to instill a sense of self validation in your students.

Today’s daycares, elementary schools, and after school programs are highly diverse and include different ethnicities and cultures. Due to the diverse ethnicites basic black, brown, white and tan colored art supplies, such as construction paper or crayons, are no longer able to encompass each individual child. In classrooms children are taught to work with the supplies made available for them.

A very popular beginning of the school year activity is to have students create look alike body forms to help introduce themselves. A child may find this project difficult if the color they believe represents their skin tone is not available. This can make a student frustrated and confused as to why what they look like is not available or considered normal enough to be available. To prevent these identity issues at an early age we are thrilled to offer our Multicultural Construction Paper in two convenient sizes.

For every day coloring activities we also would like to introduce our Multicultural Crayon packs. We offer larger crayons for artists with little hands as well as normal sized crayons for our advanced doodlers. We have expanded our Multicultural line to include additional art supplies such as colored pencils and paint. These supplies are great to have on hand for classrooms, art programs, and day care facilities.

“A school needs to be a place for all children, not based on the idea that they are all the same, but that they are all different”

-Loris Malaguzzi


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Fill up your Classroom Library with these great books for kids!


The end of this school year is just around the corner. While taking stock of your classroom supplies you may have noticed your personal classroom library has taken a hit. Kids take books home and leave them or return them to the library leaving you with a dwindling selection for your upcoming year. Don’t let your upcoming students suffer and refresh your library with the popular Newbery Medal Winners.


These books span over grade levels from the beautifully illustrated book The Snowy day by Ezra Keats for lower grades to Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan for third to fourth grade and the popular novel Holes by Louis Sachar for fifth grade readers. Each novel has been awarded this honor by being one of the most distinguished contributions to American literature for children. Some books in the selection are better known, such as Jerry Spinelli’s Maniac Magee or the well known movie adaptations of Katherine Paterson’s Bridge to Terabithia and Kate DiCamillo’s The Tale of Desperaux. We also provide literature kits for books such as Dear Mr. Henshaw by Beverly Cleary and Kira-Kira by Cynthis Kadohata for grade levels fifth and sixth. Each kit provides you with one paperback version of the book for reading aloud in class as well as three overhead transparencies that correlate with the books theme for in class activities.


For the adventure readers in your classroom, we have coming of age and survival stories like Julie of the Wolves by Jean George, Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell, and Criss Cross by Lynne Perkins. These novels are great for reading along as a class or individually. Newbery Medal Winners offer books that also discuss historical topics like discrimination in Mildred Taylor’s Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry or William Armstrong’s Sounder. These books can help enforce and tie in social studies topics to your English lessons.


No matter the grade level we have books that will draw in even the most disinterested of readers. Let these outstanding novels inspire your students and spark their imagination throughout the school year.


Reading Guide Strips for young readers

clip_image002Have you ever found that your students struggle to stay focused on assigned reading assignments? A child’s developing mind can be so easily distracted by their surrounding environment. When this happens the child may become off task or frustrated at having lost their spot in the assignment. To avoid this frustration and allow the student the best tool for each transition between assignments we highly recommend Reading Guide Strips. Reading Guide Strips come in a variety of colors and sizes.
Strips can cover one line, one paragraph, or an entire page. These tools can be especially helpful for students that are diagnosed with ADD/ADHD and have a tough time concentrating on the task at hand. Sometimes reading can be overwhelming and with these Reading Guide Strips you are able to alleviate the stress of an overly wordy page and not lose your place while reading aloud or to yourself. The color of the guide strip reduces eye fatigue, making it easier to enjoy reading. As well as keeping your place the full page Reading Guide Strips is conveniently hole punched to be stored in any 3 ring binder.