I wanted to do something a little different than I usually do. I found this idea from Deeanna of Golden Gang Kindergarten. She actually used real photographs of the kid's faces, but I had to improvise today because of time. You can check out Deeanna's Polar Express post here.
After reading the book we brainstormed a list of all the things seen from the Polar Express. We wrote the list together on chart paper. We phonetically spelled the words together and everyone wrote on dry erase boards while I wrote on chart paper. Then my students chose the words they wanted to write on their own list.
We created a story map to show the setting of the story, the main characters in the story, and the problem and the solution.
In math we are working on solving problems orally and joining and separating. We pretended to be the elves at the North Pole in The Polar Express. I made up story problems and we acted them out. We talked about how to solve the problems, joining and separating, what joining and separating mean, and how we know which one we need to do. We also talked about other words we can use for joining and separating things. I found these foam elf hats at Hobby Lobby.
This is an example from a past year because I am still in the process of making the ones for this year. I plan to add my pictures tomorrow, laminate, and send them home for the parents on Friday. I started making these trains for my students in 2005 and I have made them ever since. I love to look back at all of them each year.