Sunday, February 24, 2013

Salt Dough 2.0

This is a follow-up to our popular Salt Dough Recipes.

While the previous recipes were great, this one is even better.  The lower salt content, and the modified process create a very smooth an malleable dough that doesn't feel like your skin is being salt-dried.  The dough is much less crumbly as well.

  • 4 Cups Flour
  • 1 Cup Salt
  • 6 TBSP Oil
  • 2 Packages Kool-Aid
  • 2¾ Cup Water

  1. Combine Kool-Aid and Water.
  2. Heat water and Kool-Aid for five minutes in the microwave.
  3. Meanwhile, combine remaining ingredients in a large bowl.
  4. Add the heated water mixture to the bowl, and let stand for five minutes.  Do not stir.
  5. After five minutes, stir all the ingredients to form a soft dough.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Michelle's Corner: Halloween Fun That Teaches Too!

Halloween is one of my favorite times of year to teach preschoolers!  Here are a few of the things we are doing this week in my classroom to learn and celebrate the upcoming holiday.

My sensory table has shredded black and orange construction paper with holiday themed erasers and spiders hiding inside.  Students search through the paper for the hidden items and collect them in black cauldrons.  When they have found all they want to they put the items back in the table and hide them for someone else to find.  This is always a popular center!

I wanted a project that would help decorate our room for Halloween, but also reinforce shapes.  This project did just that!  Not only did students learn about shapes, but they developed scissor skills by cutting the shapes out and they practiced their writing skills by writing "Boo!" on the ghost.

Here are the supplies ready to go!  I used the Learning Resources Relational Shape Templates to trace the large shapes that student's cut out and then I used them to cut out smaller shapes for students to glue on.  I love these templates and use them all the time for various projects.  It's so nice to have a variety of sizes and shapes at my fingertips when creating projects!

Here are some of our finished products hanging up!  

Another popular center this week has been our bat counting.  Students count and place the correct number of bats in each bat cave.

I'll end this post with one of my favorite quotes by Mr. Fred Rogers:  "Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning.  But for children play is serious learning.  Play is really the work of childhood."

Monday, July 16, 2012

Back-To-School BINGO is in full swing now, and the third weekly feature is hitting your e-mail box this week.  (If you don't get it, check your spam box and make sure you add us to your address book).

Here's a link to read it online:

Teacher favorites like fashionable borders and core standards like Math and Social Studies occupy the spaces in row two.

Play NOW through Aug 31st(You don't have to get all your dots in one visit.)Click on the links below to see thousands of qualifying items for this week's featured row.

Spend $5 on Math ManipulativesYour students will stay engaged and enjoy math with manipulatives. Make the abstract more visual with hands-on learning.

Any 2 BordersSpice up your room with borders. A new border can spark new life in to an old bulletin board or dress up a boring corner of your room.

Any Social Studies ItemTeach your students about our greatest achievements as well as our darkest hours. As students learn about their past, you'll be laying the foundation of their futures.

Any 3 Learning ChartsYou're sure to find a poster for just about anything you teach. Affordable, just the right size, and loaded with information. You get additional reproducibles on the back of most posters.

Any Library PocketsSort lunch cards, display behavior management cards, or stay organized with library pockets.

BONUS BINGO:Every dot you earn is worth 50¢ OFF a September purchase. You can still win big - even without five in a row - up to $12.50 off a purchase in September.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Back to School Bingo is back!

Back-To-School Bingo: 
You Pick the Products, You Pick the Sale

Our most popular promotion is back!  As you purchase items you need for your classroom, you receive a dot on your bingo board.  Buy five of these items to make a row and win.

The easiest rows are the two diagonals. They're the necessities you buy every year to set up your classroom.

Download the PDF Bingo Game Board

Download the PDF Bingo Game Board
Bring in your board and start saving today

Play & keep your Bingo card online!
No card to lose or keep track of.

Play BINGO Online

Every dot you earn is worth 50¢ off a September purchase. Up to $12.50 OFF.

Valid September 1-30, 2012. Limit one combined discount per card; must be redeemed in a single purchase. No cash value.

13 ways to save when you buy the items you already use.
Get 5 in a row & choose:

  • 25% OFF One Item
  • $5.00 Gift Card
  • FREE Stickers*
*Select styles, while supplies last.
Limit one qualifying box per item.
Ends Aug. 31, 2012. Limit one discount per purchase.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Getting Crafty for the 4th of July

I saw the idea for this wreath here and decided to make it for myself and a few friends.  I love the star spangled sparkle it adds to my front door!  This project was simple enough that children could easily do it.  I'm so pleased with my results I may make a summer wreath using the same method, but with sunflower fabric instead!

Have a wonderful 4th of July:)

Monday, June 25, 2012

Beautiful Cards with Library Pockets

I love the new Black and White library pockets from Creative Teaching Press!  They make any card beautiful.  Here are some that I made this week.

A simple tag shape with some embellishment paired with a Black and White library pocket is a great way to give a one of a kind card.

I used a Teacher Created Resources halloween border to make this card.  Pull it out all the way and receive a little scare.  Kids will love making and giving this card!

The sophisticated designs on the library pockets compliment any card.  They are definitely my new favorite element in card making.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The Designer Classroom

The Designer Classroom is back at The Learning Bug!  Stop in to see the latest trends in classroom decor.  
 There is a design theme for everyone!

The warm and inviting Hot to Dot and Ribbon by the Yard designs are perfect for giving your classroom some sparkle.

The cheery and colorful Dots on Chocolate line is a versatile combination that works well with pink, sky blue, orange, brown, and more.  Use this line to bring out the color in your class projects.

Dots on Turquoise really catches the eye!  This versatile line lends a designer look to any classroom.

The simple elegance of Black and White designs gives any classroom a sophisticated look.

Looking for a little pizazz?  Poppin' Patterns is the line for you.  Bright colors appear to pop off the borders and accents.  

In addition to these great designer lines we have several classroom decor themes to give your room a central look and feel.  Choose from robots, friendly monsters, rock n' roll, monkeys, Charlie Brown, and more!

Come in and let us help you create the classroom of your dreams!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Ready, Set, It's Summer!

With summer upon us, it's time to stop by The Learning Bug for some quick and fun learning activities to help your child retain their knowledge from school and get a head start for the coming year.

Here are four of our favorite summer learning products:
Our Flash Card Zone has everything you need for quick drills and introducing new concepts.  For more ways to use your flash cards see these previous blog posts- Flash Card Games Part 1, Flash Card Games Part 2, Flash Card Games Part 3.


Our That's Baloney! games are perfect for at home or on the go.  These cross-curricular games are packed with 500 grade-level questions.  
  • Players spin to see which category their challenge will come from:  Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies or Mystery Meat.
  • Players must read the statement in the corresponding category on their card and determine whether it is true or baloney (false)
  • Points are given for correct answers
  • Each game includes 200 4 1/4 diameter cards, spinner, and directions
  • An answer sheet with explanations of false answers is included 


Summer Bridge Activities books build confidence and self-esteem with activities that prepare students for the next grade.  Children complete two pages each day to retain knowledge from the previous grade and get a jump start on the coming grade. 


Our son will be entering fifth grade this coming year.  To give him a head start on learning his states and capitals we're using these awesome States & Capitals flash cards.  These cards are a great resource for learning about each state.

Come on by and let us help you find what will help your child succeed!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Grand Canyon Cake

Our son, Ian, went on a field trip with his fourth grade class to the Grand Canyon last week.  To honor this adventure, he requested we make a Grand Canyon cake.
 We set a portion of the cake mix aside and mixed in blue food coloring because he wanted the Colorado River running through it.

After it baked, we dug out part of the center to create the canyon.
*If I were doing this over again, I would create layers of pink, red, and brown cake mix.  That way when I dug out the center you would see the layers in the cake just like you do at the actual Grand Canyon.

 Next we frosted the cake- blue frosting for the river and pink for the north and south rims.

 Ian loved it!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Introducing Learning Spot™ Lessons

New from Carson-Dellosa, Learning Spot Lessons interactive whiteboard units.

Turn on your interactive whiteboard. Then give it power.

Download a FREE Learning Spot Lessons unit from The Learning Bug today, and save hours in planning for tomorrow!

The perfect combo of digital teaching and hands-on learning:
* Downloadable from the web - no CDs needed
* Engaging, fun, standards-based content for students
* Pre-loaded lesson plans save time, reduce teacher workload
* Designed for whole group, small group and individualized learning
* Classroom management tools to keep entire class engaged
* Compatible with ALL interactive whiteboard technology, as well as Mac and PC

Grades K-2 available now. Grades 3-5 coming soon.

Read more about Learning Spot Lessons online at:

Watch this 96 second video to learn more now!

Developed and tested by teachers, these lessons set a new standard for engaging students in the classroom.

The perfect balance between digital teaching and hands-on learning begins with Learning Spot Lessons.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Prepare now for Dr. Seuss' Birthday!

Each year the National Education Association hosts Read Across America - an annual reading motivation and awareness program that calls for every child in every community to celebrate reading on or near March 2, the birthday of beloved children's author Dr. Seuss. NEA's Read Across America also provides NEA members, parents, caregivers, and children the resources and activities they need to keep reading on the calendar 365 days a year.

National Reading Week is the first full week in March, and National Reading Month is all of March.

The Learning Bug has created Dr. Seuss lesson plans that integrate all subject areas including math, science, social studies, character counts and of course math and reading. You can adjust each day's activity from a quick art project to a complete lesson that meets state objectives. That flexibility also allows the teacher to adapt the lessons to multiple grade levels, or to differentiate instruction to each of her students' ability levels. The lessons are perfect for whole class, small group, or centers. You decide!

Click on this link to learn more about our lesson plan and Dr. Seuss celebration package full of incentives and decoratives:

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from our family to yours!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Yummy Holiday Treats!

Looking for a quick, but delicious holiday treat? Try these...

Juanita's Fudge

Making the fudge at Christmas time was always something my Dad and sister did together. Our family even had a special dish for the fudge. My mom's recipe comes out perfectly every time, and is an easy Christmas candy kids can help make. Click here for the recipe: Juanita's Fudge

Pretzel Kisses with M&M's

We received these from a friend and they're so cute! Better yet, they're incredibly easy and quick to make. Kids can put them together before you pop them in the oven. Click here to see the recipe: Holiday Pretzels

Happy Holidays from Daniel, Michelle and Ian at The Learning Bug!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Counting Good Deeds

Advent calendars counting down to Christmas are fun, but here is a great twist on that idea. Have the children color and decorate 5-10 strips of paper. Glue the strips together to create a paper chain. As they do a good deed for someone in the family or the community they take a paper chain off. Eventually all of their chains will be off and they will have reached the goal for their good deeds. Good deeds can be as simple as helping with the dishes, making someone's bed for them, or giving a hug to someone who is sad. This idea works for January when you are talking about Martin Luther King Jr. and friendship/getting along too!