Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Scandinavian Almond Bars

Scandinavian Almond Bars
1/2 C butter 1 3/4 C flour
1 C white sugar 2 tsp. baking powder
1 egg 1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. almond extract 1/2 C sliced almonds
2 T milk
Cream butter and sugar, add egg and almond extract and mix until fluffy. Stir in flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix well. Divide dough into 4 pieces and roll each into a 12 inch log. Place 2 logs on a cookie sheet 4-5 inches apart and flatten with hand until it's about 3 inches wide. Brush flattened log with milk and sprinkle with sliced almonds. Bake at 325 degrees for 12-15 minutes until edges are slightly browned. While cookies are still warm, slice diagonally into 1 inch slices. Cool and drizzle with almond icing.
To make icing: stir together 1 C powdered sugar, 1/4 tsp. almond extract, and 1/4 C milk until smooth. Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

I saw a picture of these bars on Flickr. They looked so delicious, so I searched the name on the net and found this recipe. It is made exactly as it was described and the finished product looked the same as well. I made them with my niece this afternoon to pass the time. The taste is no disappointment either, easy enough to whip up in a few minutes and the ingredients are basic as well.

Recipe from http://www.zionmilaca.org/cookies.html

Monday, December 21, 2009

More play snaps

Mary and Joseph...

the shepherds...

the innkeeper...

and the narrator, dressed as an angel to join in the fun!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Christmas Pagent

Not until next week! But the kids were so cute in their costumes, I had to take pictures. Here are the angels;

and here are the kings; we are short on boys, so some little girls gladly agreed to fill the roles of shepherds and kings!

More coming later!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Star Lantern

Actually a dodecahedron (12 sided shape), the lantern is made with pentagons, folded and pasted. The folding is what creates the stars. The shape is beautiful with a candle illuminating it. These are simply illuminated by the sun.

I did these with my grades 1,2 and 3 classes, and it went better then anticipated. They all did their own cutting, and I helped grade 1s with the scoring and folding, and the rest mostly guiding and lending a hand for the gluing.

The idea comes form this site, I found a pentagon online, decreased it's size and went from there.


Wednesday, December 9, 2009


The busiest time of year again.(or maybe the most unpredictable) Every year I strive to keep it simple at school. I try to limit crafts and activities and keep to my schedule as much as possible. This year is no exception and as always, I have to change things around in order to get some practicing and crafting done.

Just now my students left for some singing practice. This gives me a few minutes to spend on here.

For the concert, I am doing a play, 'Jesus' Christmas Party', and a poem recital of 'What shall I give him?' with the ASL interpretation. We will only begin practicing in earnest next week. This week we are doing the story as a big book. That, I hope will make the memorizing of the lines easier. I wasn't going to do a play, but kids love being on stage and my students are no exception, so I gave in and am doing a play I did successfully before.

Monday, November 30, 2009


I wasn't feeling the best last week, so when I had moments to spare I did some card-making.(no sewing...get it!) I love making cards, as each small card is like a canvas to me. A place where I can be creative and try out my ideas on.

The paper for these cards are actually pages I tore out of a water-coloured gift book. I love the backgrounds. I will have to keep my eyes open for more of the same!

Monday, November 2, 2009

posts :)

My blog has been acting really strange lately. I have been trying to update from at home and I just can't access it. I get a virus notice of some kind and have no way of getting around it, fixing it, accessing it, reporting it... Okay -- you get it!

It is very frustrating. I know people are working on making our internet access as safe an environment as possible so I have to patiently wait for the next bend in the road.

Amazingly, I was able to sign in from school just now with twenty minutes left of todays' allowance, so this is it.

No photos -- (and I do like pictures to accompany writings) With Chris's help I have just finished formatting this computer, so I am on a totally clean system, and it will hopefully stay that way. I plan to save all files on an external drive. For the last while I have been utterly computerless at school. I could only do basic stuff with my classroom computer, so I decided to take matters in my own hands and fix it. Now to get all my stuff back where I want it to be! That's it, I am racing against our 9:30 curfew. Good night folks!

I just remembered, I do have photos, right here on my drive, so this will have to do!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Tomorrow our community is doing the Terry Fox Run for cancer research. This year we will walk with contemplation. It is one month now since our Katrina passed away from lung cancer. This is something I have yet to comprehend.

And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:7

Paste Paper making

The workshop on paste paper making was fabulous. I just wish I'd taken photos throughout the process. But since I didn't, I will post links which I found which go through the steps exactly as we did. The only thing I'd change is the paper we used.

We used construction paper, and it worked well, but I'm not too sure of the archival quality there. As I plan to work with photos with some of the books for myself and my students, I need it to be acid free.

The paste we used was wall paper paste, that I have since found out is acid free. We added acrylic for colour.

The process is wonderfully messy in an easy to clean kind of way. I was excited about this cause I don't think my kids get dirty often enough in Art. They will definately enjoy this.

The pics are of the paper I made and then of books which the instructor had on display. All are hand made and all the designs you see are paste paper designs.

The green book is mine which I completed yesterday in class. I so enjoyed learning about traditional book-making techniques.

If anyone is interested in the process, I added the links to a blog roll at the bottom of the page.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Crayon Resist Leaf Rubbings

The last two days we worked on an art project using leaves. It was a beautiful day yesterday. My students were begging to go walking, so I took the oppurtunity to go and collect leaves for a project which I wanted to try.
It is featured on http://belladia.typepad.com/crafty_crow/ shared with me by Lisa at http://remnantreminscences.blogspot.com/.

They turned out wonderful.

I love the intensity of watercolour and you will see them used a lot in my class. I buy the Prang brand semi-moist set of the eight basic colours, never more. That way we get to bland colours not featured.

Tomorrow I should have gone to a water-colour all day workshop. I was too late in enrolling and missed it, so I get to go to my second choice one. I must say, I am more excited about this one. I had already been to a water-colour evening session with the teacher who does it and really enjoyed it. However the one I go to now is by an acclaimed artist, an all-day session on bookmaking at the art gallery. I think I shall have a good time.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Canadian Fall Leaf Exchange Project

This year I am again participating in a leaf exchange project with other Canadian schools. I tried it last year and each package was greatly anticipated and eagerly opened to see what tree the class picked and where in Canada it came from.

Each class picks a favourite fall poem, a tree picture, a leaf from the tree and a write-up about it, hopefully at a grade 1-2 level. Also a brochure from the area is included.

I plan to put up a Canada Map as a central display area and link each package to it's respective province. Ours are finally ready to be mailed out tomorrow and I am beginning to watch the mail table for others coming in. We should have mailed them in the middle of October. I'm a tad late, but that's okay seeing as we were first last year.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)

For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food,
For love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.

This is a little poem I used with my students last week to get them thinking about thankfulness.
Thanks to our singing teachers, Chris and Donna, they had a wonderful collection of songs for the adults after dinner. The kids love singing and performing and of course we all love listening, so we were each the happier for it.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Fall, leaves, fall; die, flowers, away;
Lengthen night and shorten day;
Every leaf speaks bliss to me,
Fluttering from the autumn tree.

–Emily Brontë (1818–48)

Kindly borrowed from the Old Farmer's Almanac

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Teaching Math

Teaching math to kids is one of the highlights of my day. I love doing activities with them and seeing their growth in numeracy skills.

For my program, I use the Math recovery books to assess and teach in numeracy. The other strands are done with the curriculum as a basis and using activities I have gleaned over the years from workshops, friends, books and websites.

I try to start my year with assessments. Math Recovery assessments are video taped interviews with each child. The tasks are all done mentally, no paper and pencil tasks involved. Once the interviews are over, you make a profile for each student and hopefully for this group I will find common clusters of kids in the same developmental stages to teach together.

This is what I have been busy doing all morning. I took an admin day today -- no school for the kids -- except to come here and do the interview with me. I haven't been able to do assessments during school hours, and after school I am too tired to work with my students.

So now...two more students to go for this group, then I am done! (I didn't bother with my k students as I know they are in the emergent stage) Then I get to sit down and find out where they all fit in on 'the Learning Framework in Numbers.'

Oh...and I am two students short for the rest of October and most of November. Their dad is doing a student teaching stint in another colony and the whole family is staying for the while.

Monday, September 21, 2009

My Class! Self Portraits

This year there are 10 students in my class. That is 2 down from last year and I certainly notice the numbers already. My class is younger this year and I really enjoy working with them. I am waiting for German school to begin to really start my Math program. With 10 kids in as many levels, it's hard to teach to specific needs.

The picture in the post is self-portraits that the kids drew and painted. It was quite a challenge as there were no erasers involved. They caught on really well and just drew with confidence. They weren't stuck with trying to get the image right! I told them these are fun pictures and they can make themselves however they choose!

Presenting -- My Grade 1s, 2s, and 3s!

Love their paintings!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

I'd like to do a school update but am simply too tired or busy to do it these days!

I had to get some b-day cards made today so I skipped a nap and was busily creating. That was fun, kind of an outlet for me these days.

I joined the Fiskars online group and use their challenges when creating cards. I have been lucky a few times with winning, but even if I don't, it's always nice to get comments from other crafters and to see what others are creating.

I don't get to do much sewing lately so I like to roll out my scrapping stuff and dig into it.

The challenge for the purple card was to include sewing; and the blue card's challenge was to have a bird image in the design. Both were fun to do!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Today Fiskars is having an August on-line crop. What fun. Join the group at fiskateers.com

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Time to seriously think about back-to-school. School begins the 9th of September. Late I know -- but we begin after Labour Day weekend, like all of Manitoba.

I will be using this space for notes on units for my k-3 class.

Social studies and Science are rotated in my class and I will start this year by finishing of last terms on Our Community, with the early inhabitants sections. We closed with the native Americans and will continue with the pioneers. I will be using the book 'The Ox-Cart Man' as a basis for my lessons.

Following, I will list links I find for lessons to use with the book.




Wednesday, July 15, 2009

One of my Favourite Songs


I have been on a reading spree the last few weeks. I find that during the school year I cannot concentrate on longer more intense reading. So I really enjoy the holidays and find myself scouting around for potential authors of books I might enjoy.

I search through the library, book-sales, and thrift shops for reading materials. It is surprising how few of the classic authors are to be found in the local library. I shall have to visit with a book list of works to be borrowed from other libraries.

Lately after watching a few Jane Austen movies I have reread some of her work. I learned alot about the time period and now am looking for other regency era novels. Any ideas for uncommon authors would be appreciated.

On the side...if you do watch Pride and Prejudice, make it the 2003 version and not the newer one. The 2007 video featuring Kiera Knightly is too modern and much of the charm is lost.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Love this image. I grabbed it from another blog when google featured it on a special day. Eric Carle's day? I can't remember. But it caught my eye, as I was just doing a mini-unit on the author at the time. Here is a picture of some of the art-work we produced using the author's techniques.

So what! Sewing, I guess!

I have been more than busy since school is out. Personal matters, visiting, babysitting, and...sewing! Just the practical stuff.

I really wish I was done so that I can do more creative stuff. I'd like to get into quilting yet this summer. Hope I have at least something to show before the summer's over.

Thursday, April 23, 2009