Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Win, Loss, A Thing of Cost - Projects, Stressed and AWESOME Mechanical Pencils

Why do I love linky parties?
They give my writing a focus.
Otherwise, I feel like I keep on rambling...
like right now.
So I'm here with another edition of
I've finally started to work on some school projects.
School starts in about three weeks,
so I still have some time.
I'm hoping to have a few finished products
to show you in the next few weeks.
I'm starting to get a little stressed.
I do this every summer.
I bring home school work
and make a ton of lists.
I tell myself I will do a little everyday
and have it all done by July.
That didn't happen, again!
Papermate 1.3mm Mechanical Pencils
862166 Papermate 1.3mm Mechanical Pencil
The father of a student from last year
works for Papermate.
One day she brought me two of these pencils.
I fell in love!!
They have a thick, triangular body.
I AM describing a pencil, nothing else.
The lead is thicker,
so it doesn't break off like the traditional mechanical pencils.
Also, they come in some really fun colors.
The eraser is a good size and last a long time.
Again, describing a pencil.
I'm going to buy some for myself
and maybe as part of a Back to School gift for my new class.
So, don't be shy.
Come and join the party with
and myself.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Monthly Goals - Back to School Edition

I'm taking a break from cleaning out my files
to link-up with I{Heart}Recess for
I'm running a half marathon towards the end of August.
I'd like to keep up with the running during the school year.
My ideal goal would be three days a week.
Feel free to ask me about it in October!
I have a tendency to take my papers
on nightly car trips.
You know the trips where they come home with you
and then go right back to school the next day.
The problem is you did nothing with them in the evening.
I really need to keep up with the grading and paperwork this year.
Before I had kids, I was always planned a week in advance.
Now that the kids are here, that never happens.
So this is the year for me to get back on track!
This year is going to be busy.
Here are a few of the new things in our district:
- Common Core math
- PLC's (year #2)
- Leveled library in each classroom (Everyone levels their own books)
- Each student gets leveled for reading (One day sub to complete)
- Professional development on math
and the start of Common Core reading (for next year).
My goal is to keep an open mind,
remember it is to help the students
and just do the best I can do.
This year my whole morning will be ELA time.
I'm going to have a lot of great teaching
opportunities and I need to really plan out the time.
Tomorrow is a new day!
We all have bad days
and the next day is a fresh start.
What are your goals for this year?

Monday, July 29, 2013

Monday Made-It...Freebie and Back to School Foldables

Three weeks to go and so it's time to get moving!
I'm here to share some items I made for...
The first thing I made were some special recognition certificates.
I saw this idea on Pinterest and knew it was something I could make.
(I'm not very crafty!)
Frame with glass... dry erase each time you switch the student and compliment.  I love this idea!  Each kid gets a day to be complimented...way to make them feel special!
Here is how mine turned out.
I used a 5x7 frame
and made four different certificates.
I'll fill in the certificate,
put it in the frame
 and place the frame on the student's desk.
Don't you think it would be fun to come into
the class and see you have a frame on your desk?
The original pin showed the teacher using a dry erase marker
on the frame and reusing the certificates.
I haven't decided if I will do that
or write on the actual certificate.
The kids may want to take a certificate home to share with the family.
What do you think?
You can pick up the certificates for FREE
by clicking on the picture below. 
My second project was Back to School Foldables.
I used foldables a LOT last year.
So I decided to start the year with some new foldables.
My original idea was to make a lapbook
for the start of school.
Then in the middle of the night,
when we get our best ideas,
I had a different thought.
We will make a lapbook at the beginning of the year
and I'll save it.
Then at the end of the year,
we will add more foldables and finish the lapbook.
It will be a fun way for the kids to see how they have changed
and to have a memory book of the school year.
Of course, all of the foldables could be put into a writing journal.
It's a way to slowly get the kids into some daily writing.
Again, they can look back at their ideas throughout the year.
All of the foldables you need are available
at my TpT and TN store.
Are you a big fan of foldables?





Sunday, July 28, 2013

Multiplication and Division Word Problem Activities

My district is moving to math Common Core this year.
A HUGE part of the third grade standards is
multiplication and division.
I started applying some of the standards
last year just so I wouldn't be so
overwhelmed this year.
One skill I don't always love teaching is
word problems.
I try to make it fun by having the kids write the problems.
Sometimes we act them out.
But I just can't get into the excitement of them!!
Plus, I'm not always a big fan of the problems in the
materials we are given from the district.
So I went ahead and made my own. 
This product includes:
* 16 Task Cards and a Recording Sheet
 * Multiplication/Division Sort 
Read the problems and sort them as multiply or divide.
 *Story Problem and Equation Match-Up
Read the story and match it with the equation
that you can use to solve the problem.
I've included answer keys and recording sheets
for all the activities.
Use these activities in centers or whole class.
They can be used as any type of assessment.
So share with us...
What are some fun ways you teach math story problems?

Friday, July 26, 2013

Classroom Shelving and Decor Projects

I'm officially starting to hit panic mode.
School starts in a little over three weeks
and so I need to get moving.
This is usually when I do my best work.
Today I'm going to start thinking about
some classroom d├ęcor changes.
The first thing I want is to get more shelving in my room.
These shelves are cheap and not very hard to make.
They are just crates that are tied together.
I could get them all in black to match my room. 
 These are also cute.
They are cheap crates from Michaels that were painted.
Again, I could paint them black.
I want to make some curtains for my room.
This set-up will make them easy to put up.
What projects are you currently working on?

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Win, Loss and a Thing of Cost (only $1)

I'm slowly getting settled in at home after our vacation.
My Wednesday routine is sharing my thoughts for...
I know I posted about this yesterday,
but it's all I've been doing for the past week.
The Outer Banks, NC was just wonderful.
Blue skies and hot temperatures everyday
made the beach so much fun.
My stepbrother, sister-in-law and niece joined us
on the trip.
I really enjoyed getting so close with them.
Have you ever been to the Outer Banks?
That's easy...
our road trip/vacation is over!
I recently updated my Midwest States Task Cards.
There are 16 cards to help review the following states:
North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas,
Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Arkansas, Wisconsin, Illinois,
Michigan, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky.
A recording sheet is also included.
I've got them marked down to $1.00
so hop on over to my store and pick them up.
Please Matt and I for our linky.
We'd love to hear what is new with you!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

(Late) Monday Made It - Picture Collage App

It's been over a week since I've been on my blog.
My family and I just took an awesome road trip
to the Outer Banks in North Carolina.
If you've never gone,
I highly recommend it. 
While we were there,
I took almost 200 pictures!
Other family members wanted to see some pics,
but I didn't want to email or message them.
So I created a collage using
Pic Collage.
 It's great because you can share a bunch of photos
all at once.
There are different frames and backgrounds to choose.
You can even add text and stickers.
The collage can be posted to FB or Instagram.
I plan on using this app in my classroom this year.
I love to take pictures of the kids,
but always forget to email them to the parents.
My thought is to make each kid a collage for the end of the year.
Also, during certain activities, I can take some pictures,
put them in a collage and email to the parents.
Have you ever used this app?
How else can we use it in the classroom?


Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Win, Loss and a Thing of Cost

Today is Wednesday and time for another....
WIN:  My teammates and I got together and planned out
a math schedule for next year.
We are starting math Common Core and a new math series.
It was great to look over the district pacing guide
and fill in our monthly calendars.
This is something we have done in the past
and it just helps us to stay on track.
LOSS:  I saw this on Pinterest and I was so excited to try it.
It was a post telling me how to easily clean my oven
using only baking soda and water.
I love to clean and this process didn't use any nasty chemicals.
The loss is that it didn't work.
I don't know what I did wrong,
but I was really disappointed.
A Thing of Cost:  This is a shout-out to my Linky Buddy Matt
Before school ended,
Matt came into my room
and completed this activity with my class.
My kids LOVED it and so did I.
Matt let students choose a card
and then he scanned it.
All of this was done on the IPad which
was projected onto the front board.
Of course, this could easily be a center activity
or a learning activity when a student finishes their assigned work.
After the students saw the visual,
they filled in one of the activity sheets that Matt provided for them.
There was a ton of discussion opportunities
and vocabulary was a big part of it too.
You could make the lessons an hour long and do a few activities
or choose just one for a shorter lesson.
It's just a really neat product
that I haven't seen before.
There are so many different ways to use it
and you know that kids love technology!
If you have any questions about using this product
in your classroom, ask Matt.
But I would be more than willing to answer
your questions too.
We hope you will once again link up and share with us
A Win
A Loss
and a Thing of Cost!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

A Blog Post That I Needed to Read!

My family and I are leaving for vacation soon
and I am so EXCITED!
We're dropping the dogs at my in-laws,
getting the suitcases packed
and the snacks in order.
The one thing that I was starting to worry about was...
my blog posts. 
I figured I would type them up before the trip
and just schedule them to post while I was gone.
What should I write about?
How many should I post?
If it was a linky, should I use
a few minutes of my vacation time to link-up?
Crazy thoughts, I know.
I'm weird like that!
Then, I read this blog post and I completely changed my plan.
It's a great post telling us that we need to enjoy
summer and take a break.
By doing this, it will make us better teachers,
parents and even help with product development.
So...I'm taking a break.
I may even slow down a bit when I return.
The only post you will see from me will be on Wednesday for:
I'm sure you will all be here when I get home.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Win, Loss, and a Thing of Cost...and a little something for you!

How is your summer going?
I feel like its going by so fast,
but it is still so nice to have the time off.
It is Wednesday and so I hope you
will join Matt and I for...
WIN:  My blog has reached 300 followers!
I can't believe that many people have some
interest in what I have to say.
I appreciate it so much!
As a way to say thank you,
will be "a little bit longer than a flash" freebie until later this afternoon.
It's not much, but I think a lot of you can use it.
Thank you so much for being my follower!
LOSS:  I ate 1/2 a bag of Cool Ranch Doritos in one day.
I love chips and that is why I never buy them.
If they are in the house, I will eat them.
I bought them to have with sandwiches
because I can't eat a sandwich without chips.
Anyone else have weird eating rules?
Thing of Cost:  This super cute bag from Target.
My sister received this type of bag as a gift,
but it was Vera Bradley.
I loved her bag, so I looked online...
I don't love it that much.
Mine was $29.99.
Matt and I would love it if you linked up with us.
Share with us a win, loss and a thing of cost!
Be sure to head over to my store for the flash freebie.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Monday Made It - I-Spy Jars and Word Work

If you read my blog,
you know that I love my two girls
and enjoy spending time with them.
Here are two pictures of us
celebrating on the 4th of July. 
Summer is so special because I really
have so much time with them.
Don't you just love that!

Well, it's Monday, and that means it is time for
 The first thing I made were I-Spy jars
for, you guessed it, our road trip.
Please pardon the pictures,
I'm not much of a photographer.
I started with two empty plastic
containers, a bag of rice and some small trinkets.
I alternated putting rice and trinkets into the containers.
I wanted my daughter to know what she was looking
for in each jar, so I made little cards.

The pictures are upside-down,
but I'm sure you get the idea!
The trinkets were put on a piece of paper
and then I took a picture.
I printed the pictures onto white paper
and cut the cards.
Then I put the cards into a baggie.
It's nothing fancy, but I just need it to
last for our trip.
This might be fun to use in the classroom with
spelling or vocabulary words.
You could place words in the containers that follow
a certain spelling pattern and those that don't.
The kids would have a recording sheet
to list the words they find -
pattern words and non-pattern words.
Math equations could be put in the containers.
Have some correct equations and some incorrect.
Again, give the kids a recording sheet
to share what they find.
How else could we use these?
My second creation was...

These are word lists and activities
that I use with my own third graders,
but could be used in second or fourth also.
There are three different word lists.
All three packs have
2 skill sheets to use with the word lists,
a word sort and
and two additional activities.
Many of the activities have two versions,
on-level and above level words.
 Each of the products below are sold separately
or you can buy the whole bundle.
Also, they are 20% off through Wednesday!

What have you been working on lately?