Sunday, September 6, 2015

Fun with Environmental Print and FREEBIES!

Hi! I'm Carolyn from Kindergarten: Holding Hands and Sticking Together.  Today I wanted to share some great environmental print ideas to start the year!

Reading environmental print, like reading names, is a  GREAT way for children to feel successful and realize they actually are readers. For me, it's one of the greatest experiences as a teacher to see a child realize he or she IS a reader.

I made several simple environmental print books years ago that I get out at the beginning of each year.  They are very simple and look like this:

They're very "well-loved" and I wanted to reprint them- then realized they were on my computer that crashed and is GONE. :(   Plus- I know... they are Comic Sans.

But even though I now have many fun, new, and exciting fonts on my computer- Comic Sans will still always have a special little place in my non-techy, old-fashioned heart.   I still remember the joy of having a typewriter that had a correctable typewriter ribbon- or one of these- so...
(I probably used it after I walked 5 miles uphill both ways to school one day...)

Anyway- moving on- 

I wanted to find some new books to copy and laminate to add to my collection- and I found some wonderful freebies at TPT I thought I would pass on to you!

This I Can Read Environmental Print book is at Jennifer Knopf's (Herding Cats in Kindergarten) store.  It has 8 pages and 42 different pictures.

I Can Read! An Environmental Print Book   I Can Read! An Environmental Print Book   I Can Read! An Environmental Print Book   I Can Read! An Environmental Print Book

Mine is all laminated and ready to read! Thank you, Jennifer!

Next are some fun Environmental Print ABCs by Joey Barnes.
Environmental Print ABCs FreebieEnvironmental Print ABCs Freebie Environmental Print ABCs FreebieEnvironmental Print ABCs Freebie
Thank you, Joey! I made these into another book.

This Environmental Print Alphabet by Missy Gibbs looks awesome!  Here are some of the sample pictures:
Environmental Print Alphabet FREEBIEEnvironmental Print Alphabet FREEBIEEnvironmental Print Alphabet FREEBIEEnvironmental Print Alphabet FREEBIE

Sarah Allen also has some great free alphabet posters at her store!

Environmental Print Classroom AlphabetEnvironmental Print Classroom AlphabetEnvironmental Print Classroom AlphabetEnvironmental Print Classroom Alphabet

 Anna from Gluesticks and Giggles  has this freebie of  Environmental Print for Classroom Use in her store which would be great for word walls, too:
Environmental Print for Classroom Use  Environmental Print for Classroom UseEnvironmental Print for Classroom Use

Kelly Haynes has a cute   "I like" environmental print book freebie at her store.

Environmental Print book with sight words I LIKE      Environmental Print book with sight words I LIKE    Environmental Print book with sight words I LIKE

Keller Kindergarten has an Environmental Print ABC Chart freebie.

Environmental Print ABC Chart   Environmental Print ABC Chart   Environmental Print ABC Chart

Abby Boruff  offers this Environmental Print Emergent Reader freebie.

I can't wait to play this Environmental Print  I Have/Who Has Game by Gluesticks and Giggles.  I was so excited to find it. 
 Environmental Print "I have... Who has?" GameEnvironmental Print "I have... Who has?" Game

Here are some of the cards that I printed out and laminated:

I made this quick little activity for my class. They had a ball with it, so I wanted to share it with you. We have been working on our sight words and one to one correspondence, pointing to each word as we read. This was a good activity for both.  First, I modeled the activity for the class.  I pointed to each word and decided where I liked to go.  I cut out the environmental print word and glued it onto my paper.  When I was done with the "I go to" side, I pointed to each word as I read the page.  

Then, I turned it over and did the "I like to" page on back.  
This was great practice not only for reading sight words, reading environmental print, and pointing to each word, but also for cutting, using a glue stick, and completing the activity independently.  

I printed out the writing on one page, front and back, and then gave each child a sheet of places to go and things to do.  They could choose their favorites.  When each child finished the activity, he/she had to read their paper to a friend and then to me. They also had to read the paper to someone when they got home.  The conversations about the places and activities were so much fun to listen to at the tables, too.  

Click HERE if you would like a copy!

Another really fun environmental print activity that my class loves is our Environmental Print Blocks. I just LOVE block play in my classroom.  The conversations, team work, cooperation, planning, and engineering that happen while having so much fun is such a satisfying way to watch children learn.  Some days, I have the children about what we built or played during block time.  These blocks are also a great way for children to make connections to what they do in their lives, and remember stories to write about.

I asked each child to tell me a favorite store.  I found a picture on Google images, printed it out, and taped it onto a block. It was really easy to do- but if you want to try this and want it to be even easier, HERE are the pictures that I used, so you can try them in your classroom! First I tried sticking the pictures on the blocks with clear contact paper, but that didn't stick well.  I used clear packing tape, and that has worked really well.  The pictures are protected and have stayed on the blocks.

My boys LOVE their police officers and their farms. 

To go along with these fabulous stores, restaurants, and places, we needed some people.  I made cardstock paperdolls of each child. They stand up really well using a big binder clip.  We use these in the beginning of the year for learning names, for attendance, and for beginning graphing. We also use them for block play.  They last pretty well. I make new ones about halfway through the year, because they are well-loved.  I didn't laminate them. I probably should have, but if someone bends, I just print out a new copy.  I'd love to print out a new me in real life when I find a wrinkle, but... it doesn't quite work the same.

I always try to let the leader of the day do something extra special for me.  They love to help so much.  So, I let the leader of the day take my picture for this paperdoll. It was a big mistake  fun for him to do.   I had to laugh when they played library the other day.  I also had a picture of our librarian.  She was with the kids in the library they built, and I was WAY in the other corner of the rug "back in the classroom" until I picked them up. They love to play with the Special Area teachers- and (gasp) the PRINCIPAL!

I put some guided reading books out with this center, too- so they can read at the is that for sneaking in more reading?!

my library blocks

These cuties made a mall! (With a barn on the top floor, I am noticing...)

I hope you found some fun environmental print activities to use in your classroom.  Thank you so much for stopping by! I'd love you to follow me at my blog Kindergarten: Holding Hands and Sticking Together- and my facebook page, too!  

Have a wonderful school year!


  1. This is full of so many wonderful resources! Thank you for putting them all together. I will be busy printing this weekend. I have never been brave enough to take pictures to make the student paper dolls. I will have to give it a try!

    1. Thank you so much for writing, Diane! The kids LOVE to play with "you" as a paperdoll. And it's also fun to listen to what they make you say... :) You hear yourself coming right back at you! Have a wonderful year!

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  2. I love the great ideas to add interest to the block center. We do a week of places in our community this year and I think I will be adding these to the block area that week.

    I also know how you feel about crashed computers. Mine died this summer and I think I will be discovering every week all year what I forgot was saved on it. I managed to save my photos and my last year's lesson plans, but most of the other stuff is gone. I am trying to be smart and backing up more regularly now.

    1. Thank you for writing, Laura! I think your kids will love the blocks! I'm so glad you could save your photos- but it sure is a pain to lose things on your computer. (Even things you don't know you've lost yet! ) Have a great year!


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