January 30, 2012

Sooo Random! Tag You're It!

Gotta love a good virtual game!!! I'm gonna have to break some rules here, so hang on this is a LONG post...here goes: 

RULES: 
Tell 12 things about yourself, then answer 12 questions from the person who tagged you, then make up your own 12 questions! 

Four lovely people tagged me..YIKES!! I hope I don't bore anyone with this post, but I promise to answer all these questions, its only fair :D

4 Random things: 
1.  I am addicted to TpT! I need a 12- step program. 
2. I love my kinder kiddos but there may be an opportunity for me to become our school librarian next school year ~ only thing is I'm not a certified librarian so I may *suffer* a pay cut until I'm certified. This has been weighing on my mind A LOT!
3. I am addicted to reality TV ~ Hoarding: Buried Alive, EEK! Extreme Couponing, Cake Boss, and Cupcake wars are at the top of my list.
4. I am seriously afraid of roaches. YECCKK!!!

I was tagged by Natalie at Teachery Tidbits. 

Here are her questions: 
  1. What is your favorite weekend activity? just being able to relax with my little family.
  2. Dogs or cats? DOGS hands down. I'm allergic to cats.
  3. What is your favorite subject to teach and why? Reading ~ its my passion.
  4. What is your favorite cocktail? I don't drink so I would know where to start here..lol!
  5. How do you unwind after a long week at school? By taking a hot bath. It gives me time to self- reflect.
  6. If you won the lottery, what would you do with your winnings? Take a vacation to Jamaica. Its on my bucket list.
  7. What are your favorite color combinations? Yellow & Gray, Red & Teal, and Pink, Orange, Teal, and Lime Green.
  8. What is your favorite sweet treat? A yummy cupcake.
  9. Beach or mountains? mountains
  10. What is your favorite shoe brand? Oohhh hard one, Nine West & Anne Klein
  11. If you had to choose, would you rather be deaf or blind? deaf
  12. Who is your Hollywood crush? Channing Tatum
Here are her questions: 

The 12 questions for my 12 picks...
1. Are you a reading workshop school or do you teach using a reading series? Reading Series- Houghton Mifflin
2. What are your school hours? 8:00- 2:00 p.m.
3. What is your favorite subject to teach? Reading
4. What is your favorite picture book to read to your class? Brown Bear
5. Why did you start blogging? I really wanted to give back to this wonderful community which has given so much to me (sheesh, I sound like a politician..lol).
6. How many students do you have in your class? 21
7. What is a typical lunch that you bring to school? A sandwich, chips, and a fiber bar.
8. Do you watch the presidential debates? Yes
9. Coffee or tea? Coffee
10. Who is your favorite Sesame Street character? Why? Elmo- he's just so cute with that high pitched voice.
11. Would you rather get roses or daisy's? roses
12. Salty or sweet? SWEET. Hands down. 

Julia from Loving & Learning in Pre- K tagged me, here are her questions: 
1. What is your favorite subject to teach? Reading
2. Do you have a SmartBoard in your classroom? No, TEAR. TEAR.
3. How often do you use songs in your class? A lot.
4. Are you married/single/engaged/etc.? Married
5. What type of music do you listen to? a variety, I'm loving Adelle at this moment.
6. How long have you been teaching? 10 years
7. What is your New Year's resolution? To eat a little healthier, so far so good.
8. If you weren't teaching, what would you be doing? Probably something in retail.
9. If you create your own materials for TPT or TN, where do you get your inspiration from? Almost everywhere, but probably most from our reading series which has a whole lot of things that I need to break down for my ELL kids so I'm always creating things for them.
10. What is your favorite TV show? Everything on TLC and Food Network :D
11. Do you have any pets? Yes, a doberman pincher
12. What is your favorite recipe website? (I am going to need suggestions for when I become a wifey!) Pioneer Woman. HANDS DOWN. Check her her website~ amazing.

and Mrs. Nunley at First Grade Magic. Here are her questions: 

1.  Do you have a pet? yes, a doberman pincher
2.  What is your favorite type of food? I love Japanese food! Sushi is my favorite!
3.  Do you have a phobia of anything? yes, roaches! YECK!
4.  If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go? Europe 
5.  Do you prefer salty or sweet snacks? s w e e t
6.  What did you want to be when you grew up? a teacher. seriously.
7.  Where did you go to college? University of Hawaii 
8.  When did you realize that you wanted to be a teacher? when I was a kid, I would gather my neighbors and play "school". 
9.  What is your favorite grade level to teach? Kindergarten
10.  What subject do you like teaching the most? Reading
11.  What is one thing in your classroom that you feel like you can't live without? Probably my paper clips, I need to keep my documents in order...hahaha!
12.  What is your favorite part about blogging? meeting new people, and being able to "see" inside their classroom. 

Now for my 12 questions {hope your still with me}...

1. If you had to choose just ONE, what is your favorite item purchased on TpT or TN?
2. What grade do you teach and how many students are in your class? 
3. Where did you graduate from college at? 
4. What is your favorite season? 
5. Where were you born? 
6. Have you traveled outside the US? If so, where? 
7. Do you have a class pet? 
8. How long have you been blogging? 
9. What made you decide to start a blog? 
10. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go? 
11. If you had one wish, what would it be? 
12. One little word, OLW: 

Almost done friends, here are my tags, tagging back the four who tagged me plus one more, now its their turn to answer my questions...lol.

1. Julie at Loving and Learning in Pre- K
2. Shawna at The Picture Book Teacher's Edition
3. Natalie at Teachery Tidbits
4. Mrs. Nunley at First Grade Magic 
5. Yearn to Learn

Hope I didn't put anyone to sleep here :D

January 28, 2012

Calling all Coffee Drinkers! Neat DIY!

Are you a coffee drinker? If so, then you might have some of these babies laying around: 

And if you’re  like me, you've probably thought twice about throwing them out. I was sure they'd make good bird feeders, plant holders, or the obvious storage containers, but I still wasn't satisfied. Then I came across this post from Robin's Blog




She made some cute labels for these containers that I can totally use in my classroom & I hope you can too. Be sure to soak them with water & baking soda beforehand to remove that strong coffee smell. This is exactly what I was looking for! Stop by her blog and grab your set. 

Here are some more great ideas: 


You can also find printable labels on Folgers.com. You can even make your own design. 


They also make great drums!!!


The possibilities are endless!! 

January 27, 2012

New Blog on the Block




Happy Friday!!!!! 

In honor of so many wonderful blogs popping up here & there I wanted to start a weekly post called "New Blog on the Block". (If you'd like to be featured here, 35 followers or less, just send me an email). I started my blog back in November, but didn't really begin posting until December. I'm sure we can all remember the anticipation we had as we watched our number of followers climb. Let's all show these new bloggers some love as we welcome them into the blogging community. Tammy over at Teaching First also has a blogroll specifically for new bloggers. Stop by her blog if you'd like to be added. I know I've said it before and I'll say it again. I am so THANKFUL for this wonderful community. Each and every one of you have impacted my outlook on teaching in more ways than one. I'm extremely proud to be a part of something so positive and so wonderful!! 

{ok, sorry, enough of that}

NOW onto the "New Blog on the Block"

{drum roll please}

GLYPH GIRLS 

{click}

Glyph Girls


Don't you just love glyphs? I know I sure do. There are so many standards you can target with them, not to mention how much F-U-N the kids have doing them. Angela & Kelley are both 1st grade teachers who both have a lot of experience under their belt, not to mention some amazing glyph ideas {hence, the name}. Take a moment to stop by their blog and look around their tpt store. I'm sure you'll be glad you did!! {wink!}

January 23, 2012

Valentine Fun Pack, Glyph, Giveaways & a Sweet Award

Boy have I been a busy bee! Am I the only one who feels like weekends seem to just FLY by with the blink of an eye?! Sigh, how I long for more time to blog & blogstalk...lol! 

Anyhow, I want to give a shout out (is that the correct blogging term? someone please help me out) to my blogging buddy Mrs. Cupcake over at a Cupcake for the Teacher. She gave me this sweet award that truly touched my heart and made my week!! If you haven't checked out her awesome blog whatcha' waiting for?! She's got a fantastic giveaway going on right now in celebration of her 400th follower. 

{click} 

A Cupcake for the Teacher

I am passing this award to: 

Kristen at Ladybug's Teacher Files


Erin over at


and Sandra from 


If I could give all 138 of you awesome followers the award I would. I truly appreciate you all taking the time to stop by my little 'ol blog. Thank- you all so much!!!

Now for some Valentine's FUN! I've posted two new products to TpT and Teacher's Notebook. First is a Valentine Buddy Glyph. There are 10 pages including patterns, step by step directions, and a student sheet for interpreting data. Just $1.50!!

and 

A Valentine's fun pack! 4 activities- 52 pages total. Included is a pocket chart poem with cards & a student sheet, valentine song, large emergent reader, and pattern fun! All for just $3.50!! Get it here on TpT and Teacher's Notebook. 

Have a Great Day!



January 19, 2012

Martin Luther King Jr. was a Man of Peace + Freebies

We've had a fun week in Kindergarten learning all about Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks and I have a few freebies for you as well!



I started off by reading my favorite book on Martin Luther King Jr. and using the graphic organizer above to help students organize their thoughts.



I highly recommend reading this book when introducing this unit. It is filled with a ton of great information, and it really brings Dr. King's story down to a level children can understand. Here are some of my other favorite books on Martin Luther King Jr:


We also did a circle map and wrote words that describe Martin Luther King. Then we did a cute craftivity from my Black History Month Craft Pack. 


We also made one for Rosa Parks


{love the cute hat}


Here's a funny story for you....one of my student's was helping another student complete their project when he suddenly yelled "Mrs. M, we need Rosa's bra!"....I quickly turned and said "wwaaaaaaattt", then he looked at me so innocently and said, "her bra, the white things" as he pointed to the doyle's. HAHAHAHA!! I couldn't help but burst out laughing. Kids really say the darnest things! 

We also worked on our bus craft and our peace wreath, which you can find in my Black History Month Craft Pack here. 

& finally a "We're all in this Together" Peace Wreath


Here are some other freebies I wanted to share with y'all. Hope you can use them in your classroom! 





January 18, 2012

Martin Luther King Jr. & Rosa Parks Craft Pack + Amazon winner!

I know its LATE & I'm terribly sorry but I really hope you can use some of these activities in your classroom. I've been really bogged down lately with assessments (two different kinds~ I know right?!), data collection/ graphing, new students, outrageous behaviors, re-organizing my classroom, planning/ preparing for our awards ceremony at the end of the school year, and of course- THE most important- actual teaching. Not to mention one of my co- workers has been out on leave and I've been helping her sub along the way so you can say I have 42 little kinders. WHEW! I'm tired just typing all of that {THANKS for letting me vent}. 

Finally uploaded to TpT & Teacher's Notebook


24 pages including step by step directions for each project along with patterns for each one. It's on sale now for just $2.75!!! I promise to be back tomorrow (or the next day..lol) with more pictures & hopefully some freebies. 

Now onto the winner of my $20 Amazon giveaway: 


Congratulations Lisa!! I'll be emailing you shortly! 


January 14, 2012

*Love to Joplin*

I love being part of this blogging community. There are a million reasons why. But the most important reason is how everyone comes together when someone else is in need. Teachers in Joplin, Missouri are in need of our assistance. Its been almost 8 months since they were hit by a devastating tornado. I can't imagine what they are going through.



Deedee from Mrs. Wills Kindergarten received a very touching email from a teacher in Joplin. Here is her email: 

I teach in Joplin, which made worldwide news last May when our town was cut in half by an F5 tornado. Many of our elementary schools were destroyed or damaged, and as teachers, we have had a roller coaster year.  I came from a meeting yesterday where many are struggling with the weight of all we are dealing with.  My request is this: would you be willing to donate a created pack of your choosing to give away at a drawing at our upcoming district Kindergarten grade level meeting?  The meeting is Monday and I am sorry for the short notice but I did not realize until the meeting how down everyone is feeling.

Here's how you can help: 

1.  Send your TpT product or Teacher's Notebook to Erica
edoennig@joplin.k12.mo.us

2. Then link up on Deedee's blog

3. Purchase a tpt or teacher's notebook gift certificate

Wouldn't it be awesome if we filled her email with signs of love?  

Thank- you all for your help & support! Let's continue to pray that their spirits may be lifted and that there may be nothing but brighter days ahead for the people of Joplin. 

Have a Great Day!

January 13, 2012

Chinese New Year Wrap- Up: Picture Overload!!

Chinatown, San Francisco 


We wrapped up our Chinese New Year Unit this week & boy did the kids have a BLAST! I was also able to hit our Social Studies standards hard with this awesome theme. I began by showing them some short clips on youtube about Chinese New Year, including some footage on amazing Chinese parades. I showed them some pictures from a trip I took to Chinatown in San Francisco:

 

There were so many beautiful things to look at in this store. And I didn't know it at the time, but they don't allow people to take pictures in their store....whoops!! 



I love the dragons....oh so colorful!!


I also found a clip of two Chinese school children singing a song in their language on youtube....my kids were really into it! We also located China & the United States on a map and did a simple compare and contrast activity.

We also made a Chinese New Year dragon and a lantern from Jennifer over at First Grade Blue Skies.


You can find her packet here on Teachers Pay Teachers. 



I love the way they turned out!


We made lanterns and we discussed how the Lantern Festival marks the end of Chinese New Year celebrations. 


We also did a quick math journal entry. 




I hope you're still with me! If you are, I have a freebie just for you. I hope it's something you can use in your classroom. 


This graphic organizer is free in my TpT store. Just click the link to grab your copy.


January 10, 2012

Winner! Winner! Plus Yet Another Giveaway!!

{Sorry I'm a day late to announce winners ~ I know I promised the 10th but I had
 JuSt.THAT.KIND.OF.DAY! :( 

{Its not my kiddos, really...its everything else..sigh}

Before I announce winners I'd like to send a HUGE THANK- YOU to Ms. DeCarbo at Second Grade Sugar & Spice for sending me another award!!! Please pop in and check out her sweet blog!!

Ok, now to announce the winners for my 50 Follower Giveaway. I used Random.org but I could not figure out how to copy and paste it to my blog {if anyone has suggestions I'd really appreciate it}. The winners are:

Thank- you to everyone who entered!! Now that I am at 101 followers I think its time for another giveaway! This time I am giving away a $20 Amazon gift certificate. 

Here's all you need to do: 
1. Blog about this giveaway {include link in your comment}
2. Follow my TpT Store or Teacher's Notebook Store {leave comment} 
3. Follow me on Facebook {leave comment}
4. Follow my blog {leave comment}

** PLEASE LEAVE YOUR EMAIL SO I CAN CONTACT YOU**

That's FOUR chances to enter!!! GOOD LUCK EVERYONE!!! Winner will be announced on January 17th!! 

Have a Great Day!