Right from the get-go as soon as you can, make sure parents understand the importance of working together to ensure their child's academic, social and emotional growth.
Try to restate this idea every time you speak with parents/guardians, write an email, send a message through a text or anyway you communicate with parents/guardians.
At the bottom of homework sheets, e-mails, or even at the end of a conversation, I always would write or say, 

Compassion is a Character trait that we should model and practice daily with our students and our own children.  Compassion so important to support a positive mindset and empathy.  

A person who shows compassion has concern for others; is warm and kind and treats others as one would want to be treated ...remember ...."The Golden Rule?"

I remember when I was a tall elementary student.  I am 6 feet now and definitely looked like a third grader in first grade...In fact the hall monitors, on my first day of school, tried to send me to the third grade hall... I kept telling them I was in first grade...but they did not believe me!

The kids called me "The Jolly Green Giant;" asked me 'How is the weather up there?" ANNND there was, "Here comes the leaning Tower of Pisa!"  Compassionate? No...hurtful? YES! Did I survive it?  YES! 

WHY?  Because my parents told me that...those kids just want to be tall like you and remember "sticks and stones will hurt your bones, but names will never hurt you"....ANNNND I believed them! 

AND guess what? I showed compassion and kindness to every person I met. Maybe because of my experiences as a child or maybe it was really my family modeling kindness and compassion daily in their actions to others. 

Those stories are life lessons I will never forget.

So...when I was asked to review the book:  A New Alphabet for Humanity written by Leesa McGregor and illustrated by Daniela Sosa,  I knew just from the title I would love it. In fact I thought, this is exactly what our world needs right now... this second.  

I can easily say it is a great book and it is!  But it is more that a great book...it inspires all of us to think about how to treat ourselves and others.

Each letter of the alphabet stands for a word that exemplifies positive character traits and teaches children new words that are important to be your best self and to support others in the journey!  

Each page demonstrates an example of the focus word in action...words and actions that young children can and will identify with as they go through the alphabet!  

The words selected give kid friendly definitions that will stick with them and colorful illustrations that they can easily visualize.  

I am thinking that all children will identify with this alphabet book and be drawn back to the pages and letters that represent words that will help them make good sound decisions of how to treat others as well as how to treat themselves when they are faced with a sticky situation.   

Here is a little sampling of this book:

So, as the title of this blog post suggests, A New Alphabet for Humanity shows us 26 ways from A-Z (Abundance to Zen) to inspire our children (and all of us ) to be compassionate, kind and loving!  Let's empower our children to exhibit and communicate all 26 positive character traits today and everyday!

This is book should be in every home, classroom and library! 

Something to Remember:
"Kindness is the Best form of Humanity!"  Doris Hill

In today"s crazy life, it is harder than ever to keep our home life calm. and "normal"...so just imagine how teachers must feel with all the uncertainty surrounding everything around them. Some are back without masks while others are still going to school with masks. 

With a Wintery Mix Coming Our Way, I'm Ready to Talk SNOW!

Do I love snow?  Not really...BUT...I absolutely do LOVE the first snowfall, which we are supposedly getting on Monday!! I love that snowed in feeling...looking out the window and catching a glimpse of the early morning sun encouraging the snow to sparkle and glisten like tiny diamonds all around.... the white snow dust that swirls across the landscape as the wind crackles!  YES! That part I LOVE!

There's one more...there is one thing that really excites me and that is perceiving the snow through the eyes of a child...the excitement and squeals of the snow falling.  Everyone running to the classroom windows to see the tiny bits of snow falling down from the clouds...that's what it is all about...they simply LOVE the snow!

So...Let's Talk SNOW...snow resources and activities to ignite that learning. 

⛄ Here's a Wintery Mix of Snow-Themed Ideas and Activities: 

⛄ Any Story written by Caralyn Buehner; especially her snowman series is worth reading to ignite your students' imagination and creativity!  My all time favorite is Snowmen at Night.

Everytime I read this story, I think of another idea of snowmen might just do at night and the ideas that students share amazes me everytime!

If you are looking for a way for your primary students to write creatively, this definitely fits the bill.

You can take a look at the complete resource here and see what you think!   

Here is what is included:  

⛄3 different sized circles to trace and cut to make a snowman. These can be used as tracers or simply run them off onto card stock, cut and glue. 

Various templates for hats, shirts, a tie, and bow     

⛄2 easy writing frames.

⛄1 longer writing frame for stronger writers with handwriting lines. 

⛄1 longer writing frame for stronger writers with only lines for writing. 

⛄1 planning sheet for jotting down ideas and a few extra writing ideas.

Beginning Middle and End frames for easier writing or just simply writing what the snowman may do for a rough draft and then writing a good copy to display. 

⛄I then add lots of beads, scraps, tissue, shape stickers, and all kinds of craft media materials to assist creativity. 

⛄An idea with an outline of directions for a lesson. 

⛄Sample craft. 

 ⛄  Want a Digital version of Snowmen at Night created for Google Slides™?  Simply click and add your name to my email list to receive this SNOWY Resource FREE!  

Ummmm...if you would rather pay for it, no worries, click here!


⛄ Have Some Fun with Snow Dough!

⛄  All kids love snow or at least most of them do...

If they have ever played in snow, they will remember the cold icy feeling of making a snowman, snow angel or snowball.

You can make snow dough with only 2 ingredients...YES...I did say 2.  Baking soda and water.  All you need is one cup of Baking soda and 1/4 cup of water and you will bring that cold snow right into your classroom.  

Here are a few ideas to use SNOW DOUGH in your classroom:

⛄Make it and simply let your kiddos play with it...this "snow" feels cold, which makes it even "cooler" to manipulate.  This is great for sensory needs and you can talk a little about Science!

⛄Create a snowman. Name the snowman and use a frame from the packet above or your own frame to write a story about your snowman.

Create a snow scene by adding small trucks, people, cars, houses etc.  Maybe even create a cooperative town!

There is another recipe for "SNOW" that I found the other day that is super fun "playing" with snow.

It is simply: 

1 cup of Baking Soda
1 cup of shaving cream
1 tablespoon of water...(we added a tad more baking soda and stirred until it was the right consistency.

Here is the result:


Have you tried writing sight words in the SNOW?  

We have...this is with a mat underneath, but if you know it will be snowing, get out there and have some fun with your sight words...if you are a homeschooler...what a fun way to learn your words!!! Even in school, walk outside and grab a tray of snow and get writing!


    ⛄What about Some Fun and Easy Science Experiments for Home or School?

                                                   These fun experiments from igamemom are perfect!


    ⛄ You might also enjoy these ideas to make a snowy day a FUN DAY!   

    ⛄ Snowy Winter Station and Center Activities are Always a Great Idea

    I  love creating centers/stations that fit the seasons and that students can rotate through in a week or two.
    It gives me a chance to meet with Guided reading Groups or work one on one with students to meet individual needs of all students. Chatting about my ELA Centers/Stations is for another post, but if you are interested in some activities with a snowy theme, here are some that I used with much success!  It even includes a Reader's theater!

    I know things are a bit different this year,but I hope these ideas can be used somehow, some way with your students this year whether you are at school, homeschooling or virtual!

    If not...you can always save them until next year!

    I hope these ideas bring a little "SNOW"shine your way!   Thanks for stopping by!