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ESGI...Seriously. Just Do It.

It's Back To School Time!

It's my favorite time of year!  I love getting ready for a new class, and the excitement of new beginnings.  Pretty soon, it's going to get crazy...I know that.  There is no tired like the first couple of weeks of kindergarten tired.

Several years ago, my team and I found something that TRULY made the beginning (and the whole year!) easier.  It was an online assessment tool called ESGI.  Instead of the old school way of assessing...with big 3 ring binders of charts, along with flashcards for each skill, we could instead just pull kids over and assess quickly on our laptops or ipad.

Our favorite things about ESGI :

  • ESGI keeps track of everything they know and I can access that data anywhere.  If I want to work on my report cards at a coffee shop, I don't have to drag anything along other than my laptop.  I can work on report cards in the airport (and I have!).
  •  ESGI shows me who hasn't been assessed recently.  With all the sick kids I had over the past few weeks, that was a lifesaver!  
  •  ESGI gives us SO much information about our data, it helps us immeasurably in our PLC's and when making intervention groups.   
  • ESGI helps us compare this year's class to years before, which has been so valuable as we implement new programs and discuss their effectiveness.  
  • ESGI (with the push of a button) prints out individualized parent letters and easily lets us send home flashcards of the skills each student needs to work on.
  • ESGI makes it easy to create your own assessments using your school's sight words or other skills you need to assess.  
  • The ESGI peeps are the NICEST people you will ever meet.  Just last week, my team mate had an issue with a purchase order, but her subscription was up. She chatted with an ESGI rep for a couple of minutes and they extended her subscription.  They REALLY like teachers.  :)
The picture above was taken by that day's "Class Photographer".  Notice my "crown of invisibility" on my head that makes it possible for me to assess because no one can see me.  :) 

ESGI has an amazing thing happening right now.  If you sign up for a free trial, you can use ESGI for the first 60 days for FREE! 

Let me say that again:
Get your free trial now and use ESGI


Plenty of time to prove to your administrators how beneficial all that data is to your program. 

Click on the picture below to get you your free trial till the end of August.  Seriously.  Just do it.:

First Day of Kindergarten Plans

Ready for the first day of kindergarten!  My goal: Keep them VERY busy.  Make it really close to our regular schedule.  Do a little bit of math and a little bit of literacy.
 Miss Bindergarten
Give them something to take home.
 First Day Puzzle

Read lots of books together.

And above all, make them laugh!

Alphabet Countdown To The Last Day of Kindergarten (2017 edition)

It has begun!  We are closing in on the end of an amazing school year.

Each year, on the last 26 days of school, we do a letter/theme a day from A all the way to Z on the last day of school.  Everybody on the kindergarten team shares ideas, but we all try to work with the things our kids are really excited about in our own classroom.  For example, I HAD to do "I is for Incredible Inventions" for one special boy in my class who has inspired everyone to become inventors this year (he's also the reason, I have pretty much gone through all my tape stash!...we go through LOTS of tape in inventions).

Here is the line up for this year:

A is for "All About Animals"

We started the alphabet countdown this year on a Wednesday.  The week and a half before that, we had been studying animals, and what they need.  Our "All About Animals" day was a mini research project.  The kids picked a beanie baby sized stuffed animal, and created a habitat for it in a shoebox (or something similar).  They did research on what the animal eats and drinks, and where it sleeps, and other fun facts about their animal.  On Wednesday, we brought all our projects down to the commons, and our 2nd grade buddies, the preschool classes, and a few parents and staff members, went around and let the kindergartners share about their animal.  The kindergartners favorite part is everyone attending the "Pet Show" had post it notes, and wrote specific "feedback" for each child.  They were so excited about their post it notes.  

B is for "Be Our Guest"

I have a lot of Beauty and the Beast fans in my room!  I'm ok with that...I always tell my kids Belle is my FAVORITE princess because she loves to read just like me!

On B day, we had a "fancy" tea party (with tea cakes, and REAL sweet tea), at snack, did lots of Beauty and the Beast themed reading, writing and math, and even got to watch part of the "old" Beauty and the Beast.

C is for Career Day

What do you want to be when you grow up?  I got lots of doctors, nurses, veterinarians, princesses, police officers, teachers, a gymnast, and an army guy.    We did lots of writing today about our chosen careers. :)

D is for Drive Inn Movie Day

Today along with our regular math and reading, we wrote about the characters, setting, problem, and solution from our favorite movie.  We also spent some time first thing in the morning decorating our cars for our drive inn movie.  Most of the kids spent the majority of their day in those boxes, they loved them so much!  The best part of the day was watching the rest of Beauty and The Beast with a popcorn snack at our very own Drive Inn Theater.

Looking for boxes?  These were the perfect size for our kindergartners.   

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