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Thursday, September 12, 2013

Pizza Portfolios...Freebie and Giveaway!!

All summer I was so excited about the prospect of doing Pizza Box Portfolios in writing this year.  A few weeks before school my plans were altered.  I sent my computer to be worked on, a screen issue, and received it back with NO MEMORY!!!! I cried. 

Okay, so skip forward. I lost all and am creating new. I went to Dominos and they gracious gave me 20 pizza boxes. :) Happy Day! 
This is our Writing Delivery Station. My kids love the days they get to deliver writing pieces to their portfolio.













They did such a good job decorating and preparing their Portfolios.

Now, back to the computer stuff. Well I had to start from scratch, after losing a 50 page document for my Pizza Box Portfolios. You may remember seeing pieces of it in a previous post. Well it is long gone. So I created a more concise and Common Core focused product, 30 pages, to use instead. I love it so far. My kids are having a wonderful time using the writing organizers and we are currently in the process of learning how to self assess with my student rubrics. We use our Writing Spectrum to help with our Student Self Assessment Rubric.

LOVE THIS!! So glad I finally got this together and am putting into work in the classroom. Here is a freebie from my soon to be posted TPT product.







To celebrate a successful start I am giving away a free copy of the entire TPT product to one lucky person. To enter you must follow my blog, and post a comment letting me know your favorite writing assignment for your students. I will choose a winner on Wednesday September 18th, 2013. ENJOY and God Bless.





Wednesday, September 11, 2013

The Kindness of a Stranger

I have so much enjoyed the beginning of this school year. My students are wonderful, and we are off to a great start. I spent some time this summer surfing the web and looking for ways to get great products for my classroom at reasonable prices. I stumbled across Donors Choose and took a leap. I wrote up and got funded a project that materials were just sent to us from. My students now have 5 brand new portable CD players for reading center. We also have 4 audio recorders for recording our student authored work and recording our favorite books onto audio. I AM SO EXCITED!!!, and I must say so are my kiddos.  My students are phenomanal.  They saw our new toys and were so exstatic. They asked me "how could we pay those people back?". Precious. 


Writing "Thank you" notes.
So happy to have new tools for reading.

  








I am so amazed with each new day I am blessed to work with these children. They are more than I could have ever asked for. So Blessed.


We also received an unexpected blessing just this week. Mrs. Thompson, a sweet lady who found me through DonorsChoose.org sent a gift package to my students. Their sweet faces were priceless.  We have already been blessed beyond measure this year. I cannot fathom what is to come with this phenomenal group of children.



Love my job!!!! So glad I have been called to be an educator and to impact the lives of children.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Life is full of lessons...

This summer has been one for the books. I keep thinking about posting, but since I don't have anything school related I have used that as a reason to keep away. I know, terrible right?!? I felt like my blog should simply be school related and involve lessons learned. Life teaches us so much and as of lately I have been forced to sit back and learn. So sit back, and brace yourself for the whirlwind of lessons I have faced.

My summer has consisted of, in short, unexpected spending, a broken vehicle, buying a new vehicle, wrecking new vehicle, being robbed, another broken vehicle, hospital visits, very sick grandparents, cutting cancerous people from our life, and so much more. 
Sounds crazy, right?! Well it has been. It has been difficult, and at times dark and lonely. Through it all I praise God that he has, proven true friends, provided financially, been a safe house, and repeatedly allowed my marriage to my wonderful husband to grow. 

I look forward to posting about school with the year starting soon, but as this summer has reminded me, education comes in so many avenues, shapes, sizes and displays. I count myself blessed that as an educator God has granted me the ability to be reflective. I count it a blessing that God chooses to refine my life and the lives of those I love, because of his never failing love for us. Learning is a daily event and I am proud to say that this summer lessons have been learned and progress has been made. 

I am glad to have shared this part of my life with you and look forward to stretching this blog to include all of the lessons I encounter, that are share worthy. Both life and school related, because as an educator lessons are my life. God bless and happy preparations for school.

Thanks Rose for mentioning my blog, and reminding me that people care about my life's happenings and that my blog is important to you! 

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Currently...a little Late

So I feel bad that I have been MIA on the blogger here lately. Life was crazy busy and is about to be much the same again. So excited to find the Currently June, glad I didn't miss out. 
Click the link below to join in the fun and see what others are up to this month. 



Okay so let me begin... I just noticed that my 3 VACA items didn't post, but don't fret they are below.

Listening- Reba... I enjoy this show and think that it is just a fun relaxing show to watch. I love Reba as an actress and singer.

Loving- My sweet Husband... He is such a hard worker and makes sure we have everything we want and need.

Thinking- I need to clean my house....enough said LOL

Wanting- Spaghetti... I think it is going to be on the menu for tonight. My husband just left work and he will love it.

Needing- Vacation... We are scheduled to have a great vacation at June's end. CAN'T WAIT!!!

3 Vaca Must- Husband :) He is amazing and let us plan a trip to CANCUN!!!!
Sunscreen, so my ghostly skin doesn't turn lobster
Passports, because we are flying to CANCUN!!!! 

OMG. I am so excited. 
Hope your summer is full of tons of fun. Can't wait to see what everyone is up to. 
God Bless

Monday, June 10, 2013

Donor's Choose

Dear Amazing Blogger Friends,
    I have created a project with donorschoice.org to help my students receive so much needed technology to improve their reading development.  With your help we can spread the word to possibly get this project funded. This site is an amazing way for teachers to get much needed items to ensure the greatest education possible for their students. 
I ask that you will consider taking a peak at my project, to see if you would be willing to help us out, or if you know someone who can help. All donations are tax deductible. 


For the next 7 days all donations, regardless of size, will be matched $ for $.  All you have to do is use the code INSPIRE.  

If you click the link below it will take you to our project so that you can see first hand what your donation could help us purchase. Thank you so much for your time and consideration.  

I would really appreciate all the help I can get, to get the word out about this project. I thank you in advance for you help. 


Sunday, June 9, 2013

Busy...and a GIVEAWAY!

I don't know about you, but the past month has been busier than the entire last year. School drawing to an end, things at home, and life are just a hodgepodge of crazy this time of year. I apologize for my absence, I know you understand. Just a few updates. I am working on some new products for my TPT and TN stores. I have a series of Robert Munsch book studies, two have rolled out and others are on the way. My Pizza Box Portfolios will be a work posted by summers end. I am so excited to finally have time to work this out.

The end of the school year brought about lots of change for our school, but with change comes greatness, so I say bring it on! I will remain in 2nd grade and I am so excited to see what this coming year will bring. I have so many ideas...I just hope there is time to bring them into reality before the school year arrives.

Again, I apologize for my absence and this tiny post, but fear not. I will do better and hopefully have some great finds to share with you ASAP!!!

On another note. I am so thrilled to be a part of Sara's Blogiversary. You can click the button below to link in for your chance at so many wonderful prizes by amazing teacher authors. Check back daily, she is having a blast with this amazing Giveaway!

God Bless

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Teacher Appreciation

I am so excited about all the Teacher Appreciation sales and promotions going on.  I am now a seller through Teacher's Notebook and have a sale going on through May 10th.  If you purchase during this time Teacher's Notebook gives you and extra % off!!!! Plus you are entered in for some great giveaways!! Swing by today by clicking the widget in my right sidebar.

I am super excited to be a part of the TPT appreciation 2 day sale.  All of my products will be listed at 15%off PLUS you get an extra 10% off through TPT. I hope you will take time to stop by and stock up for next year. Click the sale button to link to my store. I may even add some extra freebies to my site to amp up the FUN! God Bless. Enjoy!


Saturday, May 4, 2013

Big Birthday Bash Giveaway!!!

I am so thrilled to be a part of this giveaway. The amazing Wendy over at 1St grade fireworks is about to enter full celebration mode, and you are the one that stands the chance of getting rewarded.  Stop by today to enter for your chance at TONS of amazing products, from some amazing TPT authors.  You can follow the link below, by clicking the button, to head on over. The party begins tomorrow, so make sure you're ready!!! Best of luck and happy blogging.


Thursday, May 2, 2013

Currently May

I finally figured this thing out, getting the currently and uploading it lol, and am able to link in with Farley's Currently May!!!!! If you are new to my site, please stay a while and join if you like what you see.  I cannot believe that May is hear and roaring on by. So much to do..... so little time.... feeling a brain overload on the way, but super excited for the year to come and the preparations to make it happen. 


I loved the Brady Bunch growing up and have, as of lately, found it just a great choice and wholesome to watch.  Still love it.

My sweet husband, took me to town the last two days. One to buy our fishing gear for the season, the next to have dinner out.  He also came straight home to take care of our lawn. He is truly an amazing blessing.

I cannot believe this year is done... well almost.  I feel like I am spinning... so much to do... WHERE HAS THE TIME GONE!!!!

With the whirlwind of end of the year festivities and hanging on, lol, my organization has left the building. I am in desperate need of a week to just CLEAN my classroom... and maybe it will overflow to me doing some much needed house cleaning. YIKES!

A bubble bath.  I have visions of the day I will be able to take a bubble bath again. Being one SIX FOOT tall woman with a tiny insert tub, that is not going to happen any time soon. My dream home has a list a mile long, at the top a claw foot two person tub, large enough for me to take a much needed BUBBLE BATH!

My husband is the most amazing man, and a hard worker.  I want to surprise him to an amazing, yet relaxing vacation where we can simply be a young married couple! Can't wait.


Okay, so there you have it. I hope you enjoyed learning a little more about me. Can't wait to take some time and read through others' currently posts.
God Bless.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

New Teacher Tuesday

I am so excited to be a part of Dana's "New Teacher" series. Dana is host of Fun in 1st Grade blog site, and I must say it is a fabulous place.  I hope you will take time to stop by her post and learn a little more about me. You can click on the picture below to link up. This is such a great series, be sure to drop Dana a line and let her know if you would like to be featured as well.  
A big thanks, and happy Tuesday!


Wednesday, April 24, 2013

CRCT... and them some

This year I have the pleasure of giving the CRCT to a small group starting on Friday.  I have given the test before, but since being in 1st and 2nd grade I have been free from it.  I am excited and am finding myself more nervous than maybe the kids will be.  I know everything is scripted, but test security makes me SOOO nervous.  Am I alone?

On another note I just have to say I am so blessed to have wonderful students.  My walls in our classroom are shared with rooms that are testing.  We are having to remain almost silent until we leave for lunch. 



What can I say... my students are absolutely amazing.  They have taken to this amazingly and I am so thankful.  Did I mention, we even walked all the way through the school to get to a quiet free zone for a bathroom break.  They were so quiet that no one even knew we left the room. :) I am one proud "mama-teacher". 

Super excited about the next few weeks and what we will be working on in class.  I am going to do a Hershey flip book with my kiddos, while we are learning fractions. THEY HAVE NO IDEA!!!! I can't wait to surprise them with this activity, snack, and wonderful book.  

I will post pictures of our flip book soon.  I will also try to post the template for it, once I create it. 

Tons of prayers and best blessings to everyone as they are testing.  

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Freebie!

So I am keeping this short and sweet. I have been a TPT seller since January, and I love it! I think my favorite things to create are common core based assessments. I have so many common core assessments in my TPT store. I was looking through, and decide it was time to make one a freebie! Stop in today and download yours. This product focuses on addition, fact families, and word problems. I hope you enjoy it! 




Please leave feedback if you download, and let me know what you think. Also, be on the lookout for new products and free items coming very soon! 

Friday, April 19, 2013

View Master Adjectives: Take 2

Wow! This week has been so long.... and busy. I feel like I have been going nonstop.  In the wake of all the craziness I was totally unable to update my blog, so here I finally am.  I made a post previously showing how View Master tools have become one of my new favorite items in the classroom.  I hope you were able to read all about it.  If not click here to check it out. 



In that post I mentioned that I had been working on a TPT product to accompany my activity. Well....I finally finished and it is posted and ready for some love on TPT.  You can follow this link to get your copy today. 
I hope you enjoy this product and have tons of fun letting the creativity fly.

On another note... where has this year gone?!?!!?! I cannot believe that in 5-6 short weeks it will all be a memory and my mind will begin racing with visions of next year.  I am so excited to continue working on my Pizza Portfolios over the summer.  I really need to start writing down all the ideas that keep bombarding my brain.  I feel I am swimming in ideas and anticipation for the year to come.  I love this time of year and reflecting on what the current year has produced.  Reflecting gives me greater insight to the following year and so much excitement for what will come.

 What big ideas do you have in store for next year? Any big changes headed your way, or are things going to stay the same?  I would love to hear all about it.  

God Bless and enjoy your weekend. 

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Student Motivation Saturday: Linky


I am so glad I found this linky.  It is such a great way to get new ideas for sparking motivation in young learners.  Don't forget to stop by using the link below to join in and link to so many amazing educators.  I love getting and using new techniques with my little ones. Especially now that school is winding down and students are getting wound up for summer break. 

       
 I am a behavior fanatic.  I absolutely love helping and guiding students with behavior issues. In my classroom I try to harness my students' energy, talkative nature, and even behavior quirks to mold an atmosphere of acceptance and learning freedom.  

I give talking breaks when my students begin to lose attention and begin squirming, or  whispering to a neighbor.  I pose a question based on what we are learning and as my students to turn to a neighbor and share.  I listen intently and chime into several conversations before freezing and counting down from ten...10, 9, 8, 7, etc. By the time I get to zero, I have complete attention and we move on.  
                 
I also do similar things when we are working on something or reading along with a text.  I will chose times to stop, based on student ability to focus, and say "LOOK, LOOK, LOOK, Remember what you see, Turn to a neighbor and tell them 3."  My students love this share time and as I listen I can tell who has really been listening.  I have to say though, that I have been truly blessed with respectful students.  They love to help and are eager to learn.

Dollar Tree is my best friend and I find treasures there all the time. 
This treasure is turning out to be a wonderful tool for behavior on tricky days.

I have 4 of these and I keep them at my desk.  I chose students, at random, who exhibit outstanding behavior or academics to chose a cone. They place the cone on their desk and trade it with me for a reward.  I may purchase them a snack, or a small Dollar Store goodie in return for their achievement.  I do not pass out the cones every day.  My students know that I have them and never know when someone will earn one.  This helps them to remain on task. As students earn them I have noticed others praising them and being so encouraging. They love choosing one and getting the honor of having their desk stand out.  

I hope you found something here that will help. I can't wait to read more ideas and tips through this linky. Enjoy and God Bless.  


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

The Art of Symmetry

For the past week or more we have been working on plain shape geometry.  My students have been learning about the names and attributes of shapes.  They have been working very hard to learn and understand symmetry, congruence, similarities, slides, flips and turns.  WOW! Each time we work on geometry I am reminded to never assume that students should already know their shapes.  This week has brought the end of this portion of geometry, and with copiers being on the fritz we have had to be very creative with learning and independent practice.  Today was our test, but yesterday was when the magic happened.  We spent our math block practicing "The Art of Symmetry", and indulging in "Yummy Attributes".











Symmetry has been difficult for some of my students, but watching their faces as we worked on this art project made it worth while.  Students created a design and then practiced the art of symmetry by folding and rubbing their paintings.  This created some wonderful pieces of art that they truly enjoyed. 



A second group, during math, worked on "Yummy Attributes".  My co-teacher worked with them, helping them build shapes with marshmallows and toothpicks. They did so well and enjoyed a sweet snack. 







Our test was today, and I could have cut a cartwheel.  The lowest grade was an 83!!!!  This may not seem like much to you, but having the inclusion class and so many different learning levels, this was amazing.  Every student, even the ones that struggle most, did wonderful on their test. 



This is a link to my TPT product. Sorry the pic is small. Visit my store to have a better view.


I created their test based on the Common Core standard 2.G.1.  I have placed a copy of it in my TPT store.  It is a very thorough assessment and requires students to not only recognize and bubble in their answers, they mush put into words what they know, through several question/resposes.  I hope you will take time to visit my store and hopefully you will find something useful.  I have enjoyed creating our 2nd grade assessments this year, and wanted to share them with others.  Also, be on the lookout for other Geometry assessments, including 3-D shapes and fractions of shapes. 

I hope this entry has been helpful to you in some way. 

What ideas do you use or have you found for reinforcing geometry with your students? 
I would love to hear about your successes and maybe even what you have decided just does not work.  Thanks!

*God Bless*

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Giveaway!!

I am joining in with Nicole Rios at Mrs.Rios Teaches Second Grade for a giveaway.  Don't miss out on this amazing Giveaway with over 100 prizes to be won, including my telling time unit. Giveaway is set to begin April 6th, 2013. Click the link below to head on over and enter for your chance to win. She will have everything ready for entries on the 6th. "May the odds be ever in your favor" and best of luck. 
While you are here check out my blog and don't forget to follow, if you like what you see.





Wednesday, March 27, 2013

The "View Master"...

  Last year I was privaleged enough to receive a View Master from a colleague with multiple slides.
I love these...They were a big deal when I was younger.  
I got the idea, after receiving this wonderful surprise, to use it to reinforce adjectives. We just began work on adjectives again, for like the hundredth time, this year.  I recalled the fun and excitement this tool brought to learning and decided it was time again to bring them back. They never fail me!
I began letting one student at a time be the "View Master".







They would choose a slide and look at it.  Their job was to use adjectives and describe what they were viewing.  They were never allowed to tell us exactly what they were looking at. 









All other students made inferences, based on the adjectives and descriptions given.  
They had a blast. 
We even had another teacher want to join the fun!

 My students have been enthralled with them.  This time I took it a step further.  I created a craft to allow my students the opportunity to build their own View Master tool.  
This is one of the finished products





To the left is the "reel" or "slide" that you would put in a View Master.  Students wrote their noun in the center and then filled each block with an adjective. It was then attached to their View Master with a brad so that the slide spins and adjectives can be read.


My students worked very hard on these.  They turned out fabulous. We had such a blast that I wanted to share them with you. Be on the lookout.  I am creating a TPT product that includes the use of the View Master.  I hope that you enjoy it and that your students love it as much as mine did.

How do you teach adjectives? What is your favorite tool for reinforcing parts of speech? How do you spark the students' interest and creativity? 
I would love to hear your ideas.
*God Bless*