Monday, December 16, 2013

A Little Christmas Freebie

Wow!  It has been so long since I've been on this little blogging space!  Let's just say life has kicked my tush this semester.  I've never fully recovered from the beginning of the year craziness, plus my 2 grad classes (oh and my thesis!)

I'm hopeful that I'll pop into the space a little more in the new year, but in the meantime I wanted to share a reindeer freebie that I made last year.

Students write the reindeer names in ABC order, glue it onto a paper bag, and make a little reindeer craft.

Ignore the bad photo...taken with an iPhone 3G last year and I haven't update it.  ;)

I DID update the rest of the packet with a new font, so be sure to head on over to TPT to download it!

If you are looking for something quick and easy for this week, be sure to check out my Mini Reindeer Unit.  It's 20% off this week only!  It includes a craft for Rudolph's cousin and some activities for the book The Great Reindeer Rebellion.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Technology in the Classroom

In my room, I have one computer and a brand new flat screen TV.  No Smart Board or Promethean Board.  There are laptops available to use too and I usually use those for AR quizzes or math stations.

Having my computer and TV connected has made such a huge difference! I discovered Just Dance Kids on YouTube.

My favorite video is the Gummy Bear!

I used this video to introduce our space unit.

My students beg for the Count to 100 song.

Now I haven't been very good on blog reading lately, but the few posts I have had the time to read have given me some great ideas!

This next idea is from Brenda at You Might Be a First Grader.  I don't have the pictures or video to post, but she made her own Daily Five rotations chart on Power Point.  I made my own since I do my Daily Five a little differently, but this is awesome!!  Brenda has her presentation timed, but I haven't figured out that step yet. (My Power Point is a little older, I think.  She shows you how in the video she made, but it's not working for me.)

I thought it was so great that I made one for my math centers too!  I took off work for a few days and all I had to do was print out the presentations and leave it for the sub.  I figured that the sub doesn't want to have to mess with the computer anyhow. ;)

Are there any other YouTube videos out there that I must use?

What technology do you have in the classroom?

Monday, September 2, 2013

September Currently

Hey there!  I'm popping in to link up with Farley's monthly Currently.

I've been taking a mini blogging hitatus.  It's a combination of back to school busyness + the little rainbow circle thingy is appearing way too much on my Mac.  I think my computer needed a break. There was one day this past week where I didn't turn on my computer for a full day.  That right there is amazing!

I am so over this summer in Georgia.  It has rained and rained....and rained.  I've never been so ready for fall.  I can't wait for apple picking and cool crisp air!

Have a great Labor Day!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Karate Sight Words

Gosh, the first week of school went by so fast!  It was probably the smoothest first week I ever had!  No one cried on the first day at all.  That has never happened to me.  I usually have one or two firsties that cry for the first week.  Apparently one cried at home, but then the next day she made a friend and all was right in the world again. 

I scrambled to get this packet down before the start of school and I finally uploaded it to TPT this morning.

I wanted a way to track the students' sight word progress a little better.  I did track their progress before, but it was on a un-cute spreadsheet with boring font and no borders.

In Karate Sight Words, there are 8 levels - white, yellow, orange, blue, purple, green, brown and black. As students pass the tests, they earn their "belt."

The white through purple belts are the Dolch Sight Words, arranged by pre-primer, primer, first, etc.

For the green through black belts, I used the first 300 Fry Phrases.

Students can track their progress by coloring on this sheet.

Teachers can track the students' progress on this sheet.

Included in the packet are Dolch words and Fry phrases that you can print off on cardstock.  I'll be printing mine off on colored cardstock to match the different belt level.

Karate Sight Words will be on sale through Wednesday.  I'm extending my BTS sale a little.  :)

Button by Krista Wallden

Friday, August 16, 2013

What's On Your Wishlist?

It's Back to School time on TPT!  I was wondering when the sale would be this year because I have a ton of items I want to buy!  It was finally announced that sale is August 18-19.  Time to get shopping!

Button By Krista Wallden

I decided to link up with Collaboration Cuties linky about my top two wishlisted items from my store and my own personal wishlisted items.

My top 2 wishlisted items are Landforms Mini Unit and Landforms Posters.  

It includes a landforms dictionary which helps students identify and learn the different types of landforms.

There's also a matching game and ABC order cards that are perfect for literacy centers.

Click HERE to add it to your TPT wishlist.

My second most popular wishlisted item is Landforms Posters.

Landforms included in this packet are island, mountains, volcano, canyon, desert, hills, valley, plain, river, lake, and ocean.

I also made a set of black and white posters in case you want to save on colored ink!

Click HERE to add it to your wishlist.

Now about my personal's way too long!!

I'm one of those weird people that wishlist free items too.  I'll find something that it's perfect for a unit that I'll be teaching in a few months and I don't want to forget about it.

However, I have item I know I'll be buying at the BTS Sale!

I'm required to have an Emergency Sub Tub and let's face it...I never do a super job organizing it because I'm such a control freak that I run up to school when I'm sick (which is rare) and I don't like to take days off.  But last year I came down with the stomach bug overnight and I literally could not stand up.  This would have come in handy!  I love that there are lessons for the beginning, middle, and end of the year.  You know firsties grow so much and what you do at the beginning of the year is completely different than the end!

Click HERE to check it out!

Tell me something on your wishlist!  Is there something I just HAVE TO HAVE that I'm missing out on?

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Throwback Thursday: Pencils + Freebies

I've officially met all of my new students and I'm excited for Monday - the first day with students!  

I wanted to share this little gem of pencil management as teachers are either back at school or almost there.  I used this for the second half of last year and it worked wonders!  No pencil issues = one happy teacher.

January 15, 2013
I know I'm not alone when I say pencils drive me all kinds of crazy in the classroom. I feel like there should be a course on the different ways to manage pencils when you are getting your education degree!

Last year, for the life of me, I could not figure out what was going on with the pencils.  They were breaking left and right and no one ever seemed to have a sharp pencil.  I didn't let the students use the pencil sharpener because I knew it would open the flood gates even more. It got to the point where the students had to check out a pencil.  I was trying to track and see if I could figure it out.  If I could only teach my lessons....

One day, I overheard a student say "I have 5 specks.  How many do you have?"  I asked her what specks were and she looked a little guilty, but she showed me.  They were collecting the lead in their pencil boxes!! On purpose, people.

Whatever you do, don't give them mechanical pencils because you are tired of sharpening pencils and your pencil sharpener overheats. Not my smartest moment.

Then I found this little goody on Pinterest.

It is life changing, I tell you. You can read all the details about how Ms. H uses it in her classroom HERE. It's a free download on TPT!

Here's how I use it in my classroom.

I bought these plastic pencil holders at Target, The Dollar Store, and Walgreens.  In a perfect world, I would have gotten colors that matched my theme. But considering it's mid year and finding enough for my class required me to go to three stores. I'm sure I could have gotten them online somewhere, but I wanted them ASAP.

I'm also giving my students six pencils a week, instead of eight. Honestly it was because my hand was so tired of sharpening! Their reward for having all six pencils intact on Friday is a Star Dollar (this is based off of my management system.) They store the pencil boxes in their table basket.

I started this system after Christmas break on January 3rd.  I have had ABSOLUTELY no problems with pencils. I don't have to stop a lesson to sharpen someone's pencil and there is no more "I don't have a pencil!" I only sharpen pencils one time a week instead of every. single. day.

Has anyone else tried this system out?

I made a few quick freebies this week.  Click the pictures and it will take you directly to my TPT store.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Five for Fraturday & Currently

It's back!

I enjoy this linky party because during the school year it is so hard for me to blog during the week.

1. I decided to do two linky parties in one post, so my August Currently can be crossed off the to do list. 

2.  We now have a no candy rule at school.  

Of course this comes after I make birthday treat bags (the first year I've ever made such a thing) with a pencil, starbursts and skittles.  Guess they will be getting a pencil for their birthday!  I also had planned to make this.

I already bought the Blow Pops, but hadn't made the labels for it yet.  

Right now I need a back to school gift idea that is not candy related AND cheap, especially since I already spent money on the other stuff.  Any ideas?

3.  I am one folder short for my Rise and Shine folders.  The max number of students for our class changed and I had already made an entire class set of the folders.  I cannot find a blue plastic folder with brads anywhere.  Plenty of orange and red, but no blue!  I think some of the public schools must have requested blue folders. It's ridiculous that I can't find a single one!  

4.  I wanted to figure out how to track sight words better in my classroom.  Enter Karate Sight Words!

I'm putting the final touches on it today and hopefully will have it posted tomorrow.  I divided the sight words into belt levels (ex: When students learn the Pre-Primer list, they earn a white belt.)  I also included the 1st 300 Fry Phrases because I know I'll have students that already know all of the sight words and I want to be able to challenge them.

5. I'm really hoping to rest some today  - it is Saturday after all!  My brain is going a mile a minute thinking about all of the things I have to do.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

DOT Book + Freebies

Two more days of freedom!  Teachers report August 1st, Open House is August is August 8th and students come back August 12th.  I plan to make the most of the next two days - pool, reading and trips to Target.

Last year I changed my classroom theme to green, pink and black polka dots.  Before that I had a bee theme which resulted in tons of bee should have seen the amount of bee stuff at my last garage sale.  I was just over it!

I have always used a communication binder to send information home.  I was still stuck using a BEE ( Bring Everything Everyday) book.  I finally made a DOT (Daily Organizational Tool) book.

I'd love to show you a sample of it put together, but my binders haven't arrived.  Most of the packet is editable so you can put the student's name on the front cover, edit your own schedule and create your own rules if you would like.

I made to different sets - everything is the same except for the cover page.

I haven't decided which cover I'm going to use yet, so that's why I made two. Click any of the pictures above and it'll take you to my TPT store.

I'm working on my M.A.T. and my latest assignment I had to create a bunch of math assessments.  I'm glad I started making things for TPT and learned that Power Point is SO much easier.

Here are a few FREE number sense printables.  Nothing too fancy, but I figured it was better to share them than to let them sit on my computer.


Saturday, July 27, 2013

Winner + Favorite Pins

Congrats to Anne R!!  She is the winner of my Birthday/Blogging Giveaway!  Anne, you should have received an email from me yesterday and should hear from the other ladies shortly.  Thanks to everyone for entering!

I thought there was a Favorite Pin linky yesterday, but I don't think it was posted.  But since I already had this ready I thought I would still share!

Health & Fitness Pins

Ok, so when you click on the link this picture isn't in the blog post at all. However, it links to some great Crossfit type workouts that I think I could actually do.

I'll be trying this treadmill workout when I head back to school.  Right now I'm enjoying my running time outside!


Isn't this the truth??


How smart is this?  Since I'm putting together my Rise and Shine Binders, I know I'll be using this idea for sure!

I made this copy of the WBT classroom rules and it's been a popular pin!

I don't know why, but at the beginning of the year I can get the hot dog and hamburger folds straight.  Then something happens to my brain in the middle of the year (probably because I have so much to remember) I get them confused.  The pin links to a free download on TPT to help the students (and you) remember what direction is what.


I intended to make this for my parents since they watched our dogs while we were gone.  Time got the best of me and I left them a bag of M&M's instead.

Hopefully I'll have some cruise pictures for you tomorrow.  I would probably take more pictures if I had an actual camera and not just my phone.  Too bad on the first cruise (our honeymoon) I dropped my brand new camera onto the pool deck from the deck above.