Sunday, June 9, 2013

Gifts For The Children At The End Of The School Year

Are you finished with school or do you STILL have a few weeks left?  Here's an idea I put together for those of you that have a few extra dollars to spare and want to give your students some goodies for the summer break.  This will also work if you are involved in a summer school program or summer reading camp.

Since the summer solstice is almost here, (at least in the Northern Hemisphere) I wanted to go with something that was a beach theme. I started out by thinking about a phrase that I could use to connect both reading and the beach together. I began brainstorming with beach themed words like: seashells, sand, water, waves, sharks, crabs, floats and so forth. After awhile, the ideas for phrases were "swimming" through my head. Finally, I came up with: Reading is the best "catch" of the day! I used my large shape cutter to make my tags. (Too bad I didn't have a seashell shape!) Then I wrote the phrases on the tags. See below:
Reading is the best "catch" of the day!
 Next I found these great beach pails at Michael's Crafts.  They were one dollar each but a teachers' discount helps a little.  I taped the tags that I had made to the outside of the pails. 
Pink and blue pails purchased at Michael's Crafts

The inflatable beach balls were perfect for the beach theme.  How fitting with the word "catch"!  Get it?  There was plenty of space inside the pails for the beach balls when left deflated.  I found them at Michael's Crafts as well.  They were one dollar a piece.  The teacher discount brought the price down to 85 cents each.
"Catch a beach ball"
 Then I went to the Dollar Tree and picked up some really cute stuffed fish toys.  The sweet cashier went to the back of the store and pulled them out of boxes in the back room.  There weren't any fish on the store shelves but a "little bird" told me they were selling them.  I put one fish inside each pail.  In addition to "catching" beach balls, we also "catch" fish to eat.  The fish were one dollar each.  You might get a teacher discount if you ask and have your identification tag. 

I purchased stuffed fish toys from the Dollar Tree.

The last task was the most important.  Books!  The books need to be small enough to fit inside the pails.  For many children, time spent reading does not happen as often during the summer weeks as it does when school is in session.  Getting the children their very own books is essential.  I printed and assembled some of my own books.  I also found some free book samples at the website called, Reading An email address is required in order to download the free books.  I used the book titled, The Three Little Pigs.   (If you are not sure about how to assemble the printable books, follow this link to see how it's done:  Book Assembly Tutorial.)        
Stuffed fish toy, beach ball, and take-home book.
I put the books in the pails to complete the project.  This turned out adorable and any young child will love this as a summer "Send Off" gift.  The cost of the project is $2.70 per child plus the cost of the printable books and the tags that went on the pails.  Print the books at your school to reduce your own costs.   
Super cute!
The printable book shown in the pictures above are part of a larger packet of mine. It's available for purchase at my Teachers Pay Teachers store. Below is a photo of the preview file. The printable take-home book is located where it says "Printable Emergent Book". I created this book in black and white to reduce ink usage from the printer.

Lessons by Molly © 2013  All rights reserved.

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