Friday, March 27, 2015

Feedback Frenzy & Farm Unit

Well hello~ ~
I'm so excited to be on Spring break!!!! I've been waking up every morning swimming laps and loving life!  
I'm here to let you know it's that time of year again!  I' m hosting a feedback frenzy party !  I usually do this twice a year and it's always fun!  If you have never experienced one of my feedback frenzy parties let me tell you all about it.  I send out a note to my followers on TPT, share it here and on fb too.  All you have to do is look back at your MY PURCHASES page and if you have anything that you have purchased from me just leave feedback:  so easy!  I am giving away $20 to my store for anyone that participates.  In your feedback just mention feedback frenzy at the end.  If you are listed as 'buyer' - just send me an email that you did this @ and what product it was and I will enter you.  I will pick a winner the weekend of April 4-5 so you have plenty of time to participate.

So swing on over to TPT ~ what are you waiting for?!?  See if you have any you forgot to leave for me.  

Also on a side note if you teach on FARMS I have a huge new unit I just posted.  That $20 can come in handy if you win this feedback frenzy!


 Hope you are on or looking forward to your spring break!  

Sunday, March 15, 2015


So you have to teach on biographies?  Don't worry I've got you covered.  My partner teacher and I have been teaching on biographies for a few weeks now.  We even had the big wigs from the D.O. come out to observe a lesson on Helen Keller.  We had such fun working together to create these adorable biographies! 
We had a blast creating these projects!  We made sure that they:
*researched using a variety of resources and CITED those resources on their craftivity
*completed an outline for their biography after having seeing it modeled several times
*did a rough draft first
*Wrote in their best cursive for their finished product
I'm so proud of my third graders for doing such an amazing job!  Take a peek at their great work!
If you have fallen in love with these:  Don't worry!  I will be creating a biography pack soon and you can do these with your sweet kiddos too!  Be sure to follow me on facebook so you can see when the pack is ready and in my store!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

No Worksheet Wednesdays

I'm so excited to be linking up with my friends over at the Primary Chalkboard to bring you No Worksheet Wednesdays.  First of all I am always thinking about how I'm using my class it useful, am I reaching every student?  etc....worksheets are easy for the teacher yes, but are they what's best for kids?  That is something for all of us to think about that's why I'm so glad that we have decided to get you thinking about it too.  So link on up each Wednesday in March and we can all share our ideas.  Every Wednesday for the month of March, I am promising trying really hard not to use a SINGLE PRINTABLE or WORKSHEET in my classroom.  I actually don't use them very much anyways because of the way I run my morning rotations but this is a win win.  Less paper....less killing trees, saving the district money on copies and having kids do more hands on activities.

Here are some things I did today instead:

Around the World has been around for years I'm sure.  I used addition and subtraction facts in first grade and now I use multiplication and division facts.  They love trying to beat out their friend.  Trash Can Spelling is a big hit too - you can read more about it in a previous post { here }

I have several power points that I make interactive.  We might read a passage and pull out the main idea and details...throughout there are questions A, B, C, D and they will answer on their white boards...then one lucky kid each time gets to come  up and click on the answer.  Of course a fun display/cartoon comes up if it's correct.  Another thing I'm able to do is have a computer center rotation during reading groups.

It may seem like cheating a little but white boards still AREN'T pencil and paper right?!!?!  It still love to write on their white boards and it makes math more motivating!
I do reading groups faithfully every day except Friday, that counts too.  See how easy it is? 

This is an OLD picture from when I taught first grade but you can have them interact with the text during reading groups - which makes learning engaging and fun as well.

My reading rotation wheel looks like this although I have made it smaller this you can see we write in our journals, have quiet reading in the library, Grab a spot read a lot which is DEAR time any comfy place they find in the room, a skill ( sometimes a worksheet ) , reading groups and computers. 
 Link up and share you no worksheet ideas with us over at The Primary Chalkboard by clicking { HERE }.  Each week's linky party is open all week. We hope you join us !!  I can't wait to see what you have going on in your classroom!

Sunday, February 22, 2015

It's a TPT Sale and giveaway!

I know, I know...I hear ya'.  We've been due for a sale right?!?  I'm so excited and pumped up about it.  I have added so many products since our last sale.
You are all HEROS in my eyes... I love this graphic.  Let's celebrate YOU and all you do for kids across the world!
 In honor of you I'm giving away a $20 TPT gift card.  It will be given TONIGHT so you can shop the sale!
This is the time to stock up on bundles - just go to My Categories on my store home page and click on bundles.  I'm so excited that I've decided to giveaway a TPT giftcard for $20.  So add some goodies to your wish list and enter my rafflecopter so your money can go even further.  Check out my Close Reading and I've updated lots of my old products too.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Are you reaching EVERY child?

This is a constant thought going through my head.  It seemed so simple when I had 17 kids in my I have almost 30.  It is much more difficult if I'm going to be real here.  Of course there are the kids that you know the families, or you had an older sibling and you've known ( and wanted ) the child since they were in their mommy's tummy.  Creepy - ha just wanted to get a laugh.  But seriously I want you to head into work today asking yourself - Am I reaching Johnny, David, Sarah, etc.  These children NEED us - not PART of us but ALL of us!  And you know what ?!?  We need them too.  I have students that I think of from 1995 - when the Lord puts them on my heart I still pray for them by name. 
I saw something in my Instagram feed that really challenged me -
No matter where you teach there are kids with needs and in every class you will come across a child like this.  Maybe this little 8 year old that drives you batty is watching some kind of abuse happen in their home or their parents are fighting every night.  When I stop and think about those things I find more patience from deep within me.  It's our job to teach yes ~ ~ ~ BUT a truly great teacher does MORE than teach.  They love, accept, inspire - think on these things this week.  I promise if you take it from another perspective you will find it much easier to understand those little minds and hearts we are touching everyday! 
Tell me what you did to inspire a kid this week...

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Currently ~ February

It's already February people!!!!!  I can't believe it... as always I love to link up with Farley for Currently.  Why not join in the fun and link up too?!?  

So Farley added a fun little twist at the end which I LOVE!  I can't wait to read what everyone wrote for their title.

So I'm listening to Say yes to the Dress..hubby is from Boston so soon I will be listening to some Superbowl screams I'm sure.
I joined the bandwagon and now receive a monthly Stitch's so great!
I am longing for that long weekend which is very , very soon - just wish it was here already!
I started cleaning out my closet and donating clothes...need to finish!
My pageant title would be..... Coffee~ Ista!  I love coffee and am kinda a fashionista - HA!
Hope you are having a great Sunday and Happy February!

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Making Cursive Fun with a Cursive License

To be honest...I don't think you have to work too hard to make cursive 'fun' for your students.  This is my first year back in third after about a 10 year span of being in first and second.  I forgot how excited they get to learn cursive!  I spent the first semester carefully teaching them the proper strokes for each letter and learning we are a full fledged cursive class!  Part of that involves having my students receive a CURSIVE LICENSE.  They ate this right up and were thrilled to earn it.  I decided to make 2 ~ a large one for the wall to hang up like this:

Then I like to also make them smaller ones that I shrink down and laminate for them just like an I.D. ( on both they are required to sign and date too )

Now I also tell them that their licenses can be 'revoked' if they don't take care in writing neatly.  I have a license little pack if you are interested - it's already done for you:

I hope you are able to use a cursive license in your classroom...your kids will love it!