Sunday, March 31, 2013

Looking Ahead to Summer {and a giveaway}

I just typed a really long, funny, clever post.
Then something happened.  It just went away.  
Since I only have 12 hours of Spring Break left, I am not retyping and you are just going to get the highlights!
  • New Unit Posted in my TPT store 
  • 5 Reading Centers and 4 Math Stations with SUPER CUTE sea life clip art
  • It is 95 pages!!!
  • All easy to set up and easy for the kids to play
  • On sale until midnight
  • Click the picture below to check it out

Also, don't forget to enter my giveaway for the AMAZING pencil sharpener!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Saturday, March 30, 2013

Skittles, a Sale and a Sharpener

{Freebie and Giveaway Alert}
Here are a few pictures of my class using my Taste the Rainbow activity.  We did it right before St. Patrick's Day, but it can be used ANYtime!  The math talk I heard while they were working blew me away!  (I randomly put 20 skittles in each bag.  It was funny how some of the numbers worked out!)

She was so excited that her numbers decreased by one!  

He noticed that his numbers increased, then decreased, increased, then decreased!

*** I have updated the activity on TPT so the skittles on the Pictograph would fit better! 
Click the pic below to grab this activity for free or to update yours!

While you are there, check out my sale!  20% off everything!

I saved the best for last!  Want to win one of these?  
Enter Rafflecopter below. {It is easy!}

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Well, I am off to enjoy the last 2 days of my Spring Break (sniff, sniff).

Friday, March 29, 2013

Pencil Sharpener Giveaway

Least favorite teacher task?


I HATE the noise of a pencil sharpener so I don't let the kids use it.
One electric sharpener uses up my entire budget for the year, so I don't trust the little ones not to break it!
I try to recruit helpers (teacher's kids who love to help me after school) to sharpen, but they get bored after about 10 pencils.
So........I get stuck with this horrible, awful, no good job.

Then 2 weeks ago.....MY LIFE CHANGED!  {Insert angels singing here} Okay, so maybe it isn't that life changing, but it is pretty close!
I won this:

It is a little tricky to use at first, but once I figured it out it was AMAZING.  {Angels singing again}  My teammates have already borrowed it and are placing orders of their own!

And guess what?  The amazing people at Classroom Friendly Supplies are letting ME give one away!  Check out their website {here}.  All you have to do is enter the Rafflecopter below!   (I made it easy!)

The giveaway will run until next Friday.  You can enter daily!  Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Thursday, March 14, 2013

Dr. Seuss Activities

Here are a few pictures from our Dr. Seuss activities last week!
We made Cat in the Hats (idea from Jennifer at FirstGradeBlueSkies)

I didn't give them any tracers.  They just rounded the corners.  I was very impressed with how they turned out.......Well, most of them!
I seriously debated posting this picture, but I know you all can relate! Oiy.  When he was done, he said, "Aw, man, part of his eye is covered up."  Bless his heart!

We used the writing prompt from Simply Sprout and attached them on the back.
We did this activity the morning our guest reader came for Read Across America Day.  Our scheduled guest reader got tied up so we had an extra special guest reader step of our Kindergarten teachers!  The kids were super excited.  They thought she was better than a celebrity!

Next up...Yertle the Turtle! I think these turned out super cute!

I gave each student a piece of tissue paper.  They cut out the rectangles/squares themselves and then put diluted glue on the plate with paint brushes.  We had a LONG talk about not touching the tissue paper with our fingers after it had been stuck on.  We did not need to look like Smurfs!

Next week we are doing Horton Hatches the Egg.  That is my FAVORITE Dr. Seuss book and I always read it around Easter.


Monday, March 11, 2013

FREEBIE.....Taste the Rainbow

Here is a sorting and graphing freebie I whipped up tonight.  It can be used any time of the year but ties in well with St. Patrick's Day! (I will be using it Friday afternoon to help me maintain my sanity!)
Click the picture below to grab it at my TPT store!  If you use it, I would love for you to leave a little love here or on TPT!


Saturday, March 9, 2013

Frog Unit....Flash Freebie!

I will be using my Fun With Frogs Nonfiction Unit next week with my 1st and 2nd graders.

This 62 page Fun With Frogs Nonfiction Unit is a great way to incorporate science into your reading lessons! After reading the nonfiction book, students can use the planning maps to guide their written reports.

There are color and black and white versions of all products!


* Nonfiction easy read book about frogs with great vocabulary. (Printer friendly)
* 6 different Planning Maps - Circle, Tree, Double Bubble, Venn Diagram
* 3 Report Pages- frog, toad, frog and toad
* Fun Frog Fact Recording Page
* Activity Pages- label/diagram, synonyms, antonyms, ABC order, word search

Click the picture above to take you to my TPT store.  It is free until 5:00 tonight, then will be priced at $3.  If you grab a copy, please leave me some froggy (I mean bloggy) love here or on TPT!  


Sunday, March 3, 2013

Polar Animals

Our first and second graders recently completed a unit on Polar Animals.  Each class chose an animal to study for the month of February.  We asked questions, did research, wrote reports, and created things!  The kids learned SO MUCH and really improved on their Reading and Language Arts skills while doing so.  We were able to target many ELA common core standards with this unit.  (This was all done during reading group, but we tied in lots of Science and Social Studies!)  We used a LOT of Thinking Maps!  
Some of the items are from units we have purchased. Others are things we created.

At the end of the unit we created a display in our hallway for everyone to see.  Even the big 5th graders enjoyed our display and learned information from our reports!!!   Here are some pictures of our display.  Sorry the pics are not the best.  I did it with my phone at the end of the day Friday and it was really windy!!  (Our school is an open school, which means our doors open to the outside.  So, our hallways are outside.  We are only about a block away from the beach, so when it is windy, it is WINDY!  Thank goodness for Gorilla Tape!)

FYI: Mrs. Szlosek is our resident first grade artist!  She DREW the walrus and the penguins!
Walrus (Mrs. Szlosek's class)
Real life size!!

Arctic Hare (Mrs. Treur's class)

Penguin (Ms. Gilbert's class)

We were writing Biographies the following week, so I used our class penguin to model!  My class does a take home penguin project every winter!

Each student was assigned a different penguin.  We went to the computer lab and they researched which continent they live on!  

Real life size of the smallest penguin!

Real life size of the largest penguin!
We measured and graphed ourselves against the Emperor penguin.
Most of us are taller than one!

Polar Bear (Ms. Fischer's class)

That is how big a polar bear's paw is!

Polar Bears can be 10 feet tall....WOW!

The students each picked their favorite "item" that they worked on during the unit to display.  This way everyone had something hanging!  At the end of the hallway we hung a poster board and marker for visitors to leave us comments.