Last week I made what may very well be the coolest book in my classroom library. It's an Alphabet book and it's all about my students. I had a coupon from Shutterfly for a free 8"x8" hardcover photo book and I couldn't let it go to waste. So, I put on my creative hat, settled in with my laptop, and went to it!
| Itty Bitty Sample Pages from My Alphabet Book|
(I wish you could see it full-size, but I gotta protect my kiddos' privacy)
Shutterfly offers two choices for book creation: Simple Path and Custom Path. Simple path does all the work of page layouts for you. Custom Path allows to to customize each detail of the book: page background, photo size, tilt angle of photos, caption size, caption font, caption color, etc. I wanted my book to be "just so," which of course meant that I chose Custom Path. It took FOREVER but was so worth it!
A few details about my book: I started by making sure each student was featured for whatever letter their first name starts with, then I sprinkled in a few other words for concrete objects from other favorite photos in my collection (ball, snow, hundred, girls, boys, etc.) I had to get a little creative for the tricky letters. Here are some specific examples:
O- Opening Presents - I used a photo of students opening gifts during our class Christmas party.
U- Upside Down - I found a fun picture of the whole class then rotated the photo and caption so they were upside down.
X- Fortunately, I have a student named Max this year. Since his name ends with an x, he was featured in the X page instead of the M page.
Y- Yummie- for this one, I just added a photo of a student eating one of our many treats from the year.
Z- Zany- On the first day of school I took 2 photos of each child. One was a typical smiling picture and the other was a silly photo. On the zany page, I added all of the silly pictures from the first day. It was adorable! This is definitely a great way to end the book with a bang!
I received our Shutterfly alphabet book just in time for conferences. Parents could flip through the book while they waited to conference and it has been a hit! The best part is that Shutterfly allows you to share a completed digital book with others, so parents have an opportunity to go online and purchase their own hard copy as a fun kindergarten keepsake.
I know, by now you're thinking "Holy Cow, that book was free?!?!?!" Well, to be honest. It was sort of free. The basic hardcover book was free, but I had to add a few extra pages to fit the whole alphabet in. Those pages cost me, and so did shipping. When it was all said and done, I paid about $15.00, but compared to to the original price of $30 for a hardcover book, plus additional page costs, plus shipping, it was a bargain!
A GREAT BIG thank you goes out to Jeannie for generously allowing me to guest-blog for her today! My blog, Kinder-Craze, is relatively new but I'm pouring great new ideas into it all the time. I hope you'll pop by to see it. In addition to the usual lesson plan and project ideas, I have some fun uses of technology in my classroom that I am hoping to blog about soon!