10s Target Practice

Practice Make Perfect….

10s target Practice

There’s really not a better way to have fun memorizing math drills than to do so outside…


We both love the break from repetivite flash cards (however much he needs them)!  Plus, my son gets to MOVE until his heart is content.


If you have a little move to think-er too, I think you will enjoy doing this basic math activity.  

I started by drawing a target pattern on the pavement.  I used a large piece of chalk attached to a long poly rope. PJ held the rope in place while I drew the bullseye for the center.  There’s no picture because we were both engaged in drawing.  Team PJ:) -but here you can see the finished target.










Using a rope with the end tied to our chalk allowed us to draw neat evenly spaced circles for his target. We just kept lengthening the rope by 1 1/2 feet before drawing a new (larger) circle.  

I added the numbers that were divisible by 10 up to 50 and he helped me COUNT BY TEN’S a few times.

All that was left to do was fill some balloons with water!












I brought out his easel to practice ADDITION.  











We took turns throwing water balloons at the target and adding our scores to the board.







The first one to reach 100 was the winner!












More ways to use this activity…

Count by 2’s, 5’s, and other numbers

Use single, double, or triple digit numbers for addition practice

Use only numbers that add to make 10.  The first to make 10 five times wins!

Each player starts out with a score of 100, then subtracts numbers from the target circle that is hit.  Player that reaches zero first is the winner.



Have Fun!!








Sites I share with:











Hip Homeschool Moms


Thank you for reading!

Crystal 🙂











August is just around the corner.  Get your planning on HERE, too!  More places PJ and I both like to choose ideas from.


The Tower That Won’t Topple- relentlesslyfundeceptivelyeducational.com

11 Hundreds Charts Activities- 123homeschool4me.com

A Fin-tatstic Boys Shark Party- spaceshipsandlaserbeams.com

Free Digraph Sort and Find- playdoughtoplato.com

Football Make Ten Game- mathgeekmama.com 

Wiggle your Toes Week: Sibling Footprint Canvas- craftymorning.com

The Green Zone Social Skills Game- image


Living Montessori Now









Make A Penguin Labeling Activity



Informational Text Features: Make A Penguin Labeling Activity…..

I’ve extended our informational text feature study with maps (or should I say penguins) another week.  My little guy is intrigued with the maps we are using for locating penguins on a world map.



We’ve read a number of books with maps now.  Here is his ultimate favorite…


We’ve read it a dozen times or more.






This book has a few maps in it.  It has visuals in the GLOSSARY that include additional maps.   

The best text feature was this 4 page CHART of all 17 types of penguins from smallest to largest.  PJ  looked at the pictures of penguins for a good hour in total.



I knew we had to go over each type of penguin rather than penguins as a group of Antarctic animals.  

I started by trying out a few homemade black Playdough recipes because black is a hard color to find if not ordered on line.  

Here are a few dependable sites if you would like to try your hand at it:

My dough turned out more a brownish color but I’m not one to waste. The cans I FINALLY found at Walmart were less than 1.00 dollar a piece.  I kept my brown dough for PJ to use in a tropical penguin habitat.

What you need:

  • 5 cans of black playdough
  • 14 plastic eggs (we didn’t use eggs for the 3 smallest species of penguins just dough)
  • 2 cans of white playdough
  • Small amount of orange and yellow playdough


Using the book for reference he formed black dough completely around an egg.  The Emperor Penguin is the tallest and should have more dough than any other egg.  



He labeled body parts of  this penguin without my asking…


webbed feet and flippersimage head and bill
imageEyes and tail



He chose to use googley eyes instead of dough.



He righty put the emperor in an ocean of tissue paper and used the left over Christmas snow I had to decorate the surrounding area!  How creative!!



He made 7 species of  Penguins naming and labeling each according to the text in the book. 



It was a wonderful way to support finding information within his reading and using key text features….Not to mention stir his imagination! 

For more great hands on penguin activities visit Embark On The Journey.

Frog Snails and Puppy Dog Tails– Penguin Snow Globe

Gift of Curiosity– Penguin Printable Pack ages 2-7

Thanks for reading,


Places I Share With





Types of Text: Learning About Informational Text in First Grade

Learning Important Features of Informational Text with Reindeer…..



Most of the time moving from Narrative text to Informational text is easy.  My son read story books about the tooth fairy and was naturally interested in teeth.  An adventure of seeking information about his teeth compared to animal teeth began.


Pour teeth look like this.
Our teeth look like this.


Reindeer teeth look like this.
Reindeer teeth look like this.

JUST LIKE THAT…We were off to find out all about Arctic mammals!  


He had never watched this classic before learning about reindeer so I was excited to watch this with him!




I wanted PJ to become familiar with all the features of  Informational text.  I quickly found some printable lists for my visual learner…..

Nonfiction Text Features Bullentin Board Poster Set
Nonfiction Text Features Bullentin Board Poster Set


Primarily Speaking  Free Nonfiction Text Features   Posters

Classroom Freebies  Checklists and usage log


After I jotted down a hand written list of a few nonfiction text features, we headed to the library to practice using features. ( I ended up making my own visual board for nonfiction text features after the fact.)

Click here

Kindle book…

At the library…image

Kindle book…

Cool Facts/ Silly Jokes

Kindle book…

Click here to view book.


At the library…it’s an older edition of the first book I think.image



Reindeer (A Day in the Life:Polar Animals)

We found a nice quiet place and used this Know/Want to Know/ Learned chart – Teacher Files


Next, we looked up the books I found from above.  He began to fill in his Just The Facts worksheet also from Teacher Files.



Using my handwritten check list we found the most important features of Informational Text:

  • Table of Contents
  • Bold or Italicized words
  • Glossary
  • Headings
  • Subheadings
  • Maps

****There are more Features to cover but my goal is to cover them one by one in a series.  Stayed tuned!****


We took turns reading but I asked him to stop me when he heard a FACT so he could write it down.  There were words we looked up in the glossary along the way when he didn’t understand their meaning.  I wrote down those words to later use as vocabulary and speech practice words.


He wasn’t ready to answer why he thought the words were important yet.  I didn’t want to overload him so I saved those thinking questions for another day. 


-By that point my son was familiar with the most important Nonfiction Text Features and could look up bold words in the Glossary.  

-He was able to match and find chapter headings from the Table of Contents to within the books we read.  

He could find the map in one book and point to where Reindeer migrated.   

He also had 6 facts wrote out about Reindeer that we will use later to fill in the “What I Learned” part of  his K/W/L chart.


Here is an example of a Just The Facts sheet about teeth.


While we were at the library I took advantage of the printer privileges((: and printed off pages of FREE Reindeer learning from a few of these sights…



Royal Baloo – Reindeer Learning Pack

3 Dinosaurs- Reindeer Pack Story retell with puppets


More Fact Finding Ideas……

Royal Baloo – Reindeer Lapbook

Enchanted Learning – Label The Reindeer

Red Ted Art – Reindeer Bookmarks

Sarahs First Grade Snippets – Reindeer Fact Craft and More!

First Grade Smiles – Reindeer Facts And Fun



Web Facts About Reindeer…..Yep that’s a part of Common Core and well just a skill must have nowadays.

University of Alaska – Reindeer Caribou..What’s the Difference?

You Tube – Rudolph the Blue Eyed Reindeer

Animals Time all about animals for kids – Top 9 Reindeer Facts


I will share more about reindeer crafts and activities when my son has had his fill of  information on the subject.  Until then…

Thank you for reading!














DIY Emergency Tooth Fairy Pillow


Do It Yourself Emergency Tooth Fairy Pillow….




Ive been scouting for the perfect lost tooth holder because the Tooth Fairy complained that it was to hard to find my sons tooth the last visit!!


And here I am still looking online while yet another tooth is loose..yikes, I’m cutting it really close!  His tooth is hanging by a thread literally but I want to find some kind of tooth holder that he will want to pass on to his kids someday.  

Even if I purchased the kit I have been eyeing online it would take at least half a week to arrive.  

Very cute kit!! See here on ETSY.com


So, today we finished up his homework and started a new study on Informational Text (about TEETH of course!:)).  Then, my son put this project together.  


I couldn’t tell you how I came up with this other than I’ve found many blogs with this tooth pattern only the patterns were for sewing or croucheting…I can’t sew much and don’t know how to crochet.  I decided a paper version would more than work in a pinch.  It turned out to be a great way to work on hand eye coordination, fine motor skills, and articulation for speech.  Besides, he was so proud of his work that he is sleeping with it:)

Tonight I will post the super easy steps to make it.




Step 1…. Draw a pattern of a large tooth to cover a standard size piece of heavy paper or cardstock.

2….  Trace your pattern on another piece of card stock and cut a small square for a tooth pocket.




3….  Let your child decorate or just draw a face on one piece of cardstock and add the tiny tooth pocket to the other piece of cardstock.  We used Elmer’s glue to secure the pocket to the back.  Then use a hole punch around the edges of the patterns.


4….  This is where I surprised him!  I let him use the remainder of our glow in the dark yarn that was made during our SPIDER UNIT to lace the teeth together!! Let your child be creative and make some glow in the dark string too!



He is using his tongue to concentrate here.  Love that!

He was so excited that he tried to goto bed early but disappointed he couldn’t.  He had not taken a bath yet.:)





These are a few Tooth Fairy supplies I’m choosing from……..

Boys Stamped Tooth Fairy Pillow at Amazon.com
My Baby Tooth Book for boys at Amazon.com
Complete kit at Amazon.com.

Spelling Spider Web Art

Spider Spelling Art


     This week my son has been studying SPIDERS.  All week I will be posting fun activities that we have used and will be doing afterschool!  


    The first of each week he has a new spelling list sent home from school.  I’m always on the hunt for new ways to practice spelling and occasionally I come up with an idea of my own.  See here what we did?!

To do this spelling craft you will need..

  • A large piece of poster board
  • Several sizes of circular containers ( I used 2 glasses, a plate, and a medium Tupperware bowl)
  • washable finger paint
  • pencil or gray maker for the color of the web
  • juice bottle lids
  • googly eyes for the spider optional
  • paint brush is instead of marker for the spider legs is optional but can add fine motor practice!!
  • paint for the spider bodies

Make a simple spider web design on the poster board by drawing a cross in the center.  Second, draw an “X” to make a pizza cutting pattern.  I used a pencil just in case I needed to erase then went over it with gray marker. 

Sample from Spider Web Math AND 3 Ways To use It!

Start tracing the outer edge of your smallest container first.  Draw a portion of a circle from one of the pizza cut design lines to the next.image

Keep drawing the curves using the container and at an angle so that your web continues to circle around.  You will reach a point when you need to use a larger container to trace because the smaller one no longer touches from one line to the next. 


When you have finished circling the web like a spider does! use  your juice bottle cap to make circles randomly around the web.  Make a circle for each letter of every spelling word  your child needs to spell. To give you an idea of how may circles will fit on the web: I made 20 or so spider circles and a few extra for mistakes.

image image

Now the FUN part!!  Let your child use juice bottle caps dipped in paint to spell their spelling words!  My son first wrote the words (like he would for a spelling test) then he stamp painted them.

Practicing those words.


We talked about types of spiders here. He mimicked the look of the Brown Recluse, Black Widow, and Rainbow Orbb spide. LOVE the way he blended the colors!!
We talked about types of spiders here. He mimicked the look of the Brown Recluse, Black Widow, and Rainbow Orbb spider.  LOVE the way he blended the colors!!

After the spiders dried a bit, I showed him how to paint legs.  You can use a marker for another look like we did here.  He also used a paint brush.  Sneeking in fine motor work where I can. 

His finished masterpiece!!

If you need a few more sensory centered spelling activities here is my goto list for the week:

Check back for more SPIDER activities later this week here at The Afterschool House!


Thank You for Reading!

Crystal 🙂