Thursday, December 18, 2014

Free Christmas Activity-Twelve Days of Freebies-DAY 12!

Here we are at day 12!  Our school has been using the book The 7 Habits of Happy Kids  by Sean Covey to encourage students to develop good character traits.  The second habit is to begin with the end in mind.  We are helping our students set goals that they want to achieve this school year.  Todays freebie will help your students set some goals for the coming year.  It is a page where students can write their 10 New Year's Resolutions.  It looks like this:
It think that it is never too early to help kids set goals!  After a good brainstorming session, your students will have no trouble filling up their paper!  If you want to download the freebie, click
Tomorrow is the last day for many of us to make a difference in the lives of our students in 2014.  Let's make the most of our day!  Leave me some feedback and let me know your thoughts on the 12 Days of Christmas Freebies! 
Merry Christmas!
Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Free Christmas Activities- Twelve Days of Freebies- Day 11

I can't believe there are only 2 more days!  I'm ready for vacation.  I know you are too.  I am almost ready for January 5.  I just need to put my reading and math center activities in my center baskets and I'll be ready to go on Friday at 3:00!!  Todays freebie may help you get ready for your first day back as well.  This is a math practice sheet that covers place value. it looks like this:
Click HERE to download the freebie.  Please leave some feedback!  Hang on! Vacation is in sight!
Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Free Christmas Activity- 12 Days of Freebies-Day 10

The excitement is so thick in my school and my classroom that I think you could cut it with a knife!  The kids are so excited and to be honest, I'm so excited too!  And do you know what?  You are excited too!  I try to keep everything on normal schedule before holidays at school.  It seems to help to keep the same routine.  I worry about some kids and if they will have a good Christmas.  I hope that the time they spend with me each day, that they know they are loved and valued.  I tend to be too serious sometimes, so especially this week, I will do my best to overlook the giggling, squealing, hopping, skipping, leaping, wiggling, whispering, and non-stop talking! 
So, on to January.  Todays freebie is from my Jiffy Journal pack.  It is a collection of 20 journal prompts for each month of the school year.  You cut out the box and the kids glue it into their journal.  It is easy and saves paper!  Here is a look at the freebie.
To download the freebie, click HERE!  I hope you like this.  Leave me some feedback!
Sunday, December 14, 2014

Free Christmas Activity- 12 Days of Freebies- Day 9

We are on the home stretch!  One week until break.  My last four freebies are going to be things you can use in January.  I hope you find these helpful. Todays freebie is a January Word Work Page.  This would be great in a center or for class or homework.  It looks like this:
To get your free copy, click HERE!   So, have a great week with your kids.  Show them love and grace.  Try to remember how it was to be a kid at Christmas....even though we will probably be scraping them off of the ceiling this week!  Haha....Leave me some feedback please!!! 
Thursday, December 11, 2014

Free Christmas Activity- 12 Days of Freebies- Day 8

Here we are already on Day 8 of the 12 Days of Freebies!  If you have missed any, be sure to go back and download the other 7 freebies.  Todays freebie is a math game to get kids thinking about numbers.  They need a paper clip and a copy of the game below.  Students use their pencil and a paper clip to make a spinner.  They spin and get 3 numbers.  Then they make the largest and smallest number they can make from these three numbers. Finally they tell if the largest number they made is odd or even.  Here is a look at the freebie.

If you want to get the freebie, click HERE! 
It's THURSDAY, or Friday Eve! Have a great day!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Free Christmas Activities- Twelve Days of Freebies- Day 7

I love to watch the kids jump into cutting when they are working on a cut and paste activity.  It never fails too that someone cuts the corner off of their square or cuts on the wrong line and it completely ruins their world for a moment.  I whip out the scotch tape and fix it right up too!  The freebie for today is a rhyming word cut and paste.  Everyone needs a copy of the first page. The second page has the squares that they cut out and there are two sets on one page  so copy one for every two students.  They can color once they match up everything and glue it down.  This makes a great center activity or a fun class activity. This page is part of my December Printables package that is in my Teachers Pay Teachers store.  It has 10 English/Language Arts printables and 10 Math printables.  These aren't just plain ole' worksheets.  Most of these are spinner games or cut and paste activities.  You can see the entire pack by clicking HERE.
Here is a look at the cut and paste.

I hope your kids enjoy this!  If you download the freebie, please leave me some feedback! Also, I would LOVE for you to become my latest follower!  Thanks!
Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Free Christmas Activities-Twelve Days of Freebies-Day 6

Second grade students can be very self-centered.  We have all written our letters to Santa asking for things.  This freebie helps students turn this around and think of others.  Todays freebie is a Gift List.  It asks students to list 10 people and the gift that they would give them.  Help students brainstorm ideas for friends and family and also ideas for folks who may be in need this holiday season.  This will get your students thinking "in reverse" so to speak.  The Gift List looks like this:
It print your free copy, click HERE!
Ok.  It's almost Wednesday.  Just a few more days!  Sit down, relax, watch a movie on the Hallmark Channel.....(anyone else hooked on the Hallmark Christmas movies???) eat some chocolate and soak it all in!  Happy Tuesday evening!

Monday, December 8, 2014

Free Christmas Activity- Twelve Days of Freebies- Day 5

The kids are so excited.  I must say I'm excited too!  I love seeing their little faces when we read Christmas stories.  The freebie for today is a Christmas tree countdown for the kids.  You copy the tree pattern onto construction paper and then let students attach a chain with a link for each day until Christmas. I let my students tape these to their cubbie doors or you could let students take these home to share with their families.  Here is a look at the tree.
  I copied the ornaments on red and then I put dots of silver glitter on too.  You could be creative with how the students decorate their tree. 

To get the patterns, click HERE!  I hope your kids enjoy making this countdown Christmas tree!  Give me some feedback!

Free Christmas Activities- 12 Days of Freebies # 4

I guess I'm old school.  I think that technology is great and kids need to know how to use it.  I also believe that kids need to know how to draw, color, create and just plain ole be kids.  I made this page to give kids a little bit of a chance to be creative and to draw, color and create.  This is a following directions page in my December Printables Unit.  It looks like this:
To get your free copy, click HERE!
Ok, only ONE more Monday for me!  Take a few minutes for yourself today!  You deserve it! Leave me some feedback and let me know if you like the freebie!

Friday, December 5, 2014

Free Christmas Activities- Twelve Days of Freebies-Day 3

It's time to begin thinking about a gift for the kids.  If you are like me, money is tight but I still want to give them a gift.  So, for the past few years, I have been giving the students a "coupon" sheet.  There are 8 coupons on here that students may use whenever they want.  There are coupons to eat with a student from another class, homework passes, no reading tonight passes and eat lunch with the teacher passes.  I usually get some nice, big candy canes to attach to the coupons.  The kids love it!  I've attached it for you HERE!  It's really pretty if you copy it on red or green construction paper. This is what they look like.
Here are the coupons.

Ok. One week down and two more to go for me!  Merry Weekend Everyone! 

PS:  Please leave me some feedback! THANKS!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Free Christmas Activities-12 Days of Freebies-Day 2

There are three weeks of school in my district before Christmas vacation.  Half of the first week is already gone!  I can't believe that Christmas is coming so fast.  I'm not going to think about all of the shopping I STILL need to do....It stresses me a, I'll focus on my sweet class!  We are working on a Holiday Celebrations Around the World unit right now for Reading and Social Studies.  There are eight countries included and each country has a craft that can be made into a Christmas ornament.  I play to let the students take these ornaments home as presents for their families.  For my second day of Christmas freebie, I've attached the pattern for your kids to make this beautiful poinsettia ornament.  The poinsettia came from Mexico so we will make this when we study Mexico in our unit.  Click HERE to get your copy of the poinsettia pattern.  Here is a look at the completed ornament.
Thought for the day:  Take a few minutes during this crazy, busy time at school to just stop, reflect and  take a few deep breaths.  You are a wonderful teacher and your students are lucky to have you!
Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Free Christmas Activities-Twelve Days of Christmas Freebies!

I can't begin to thank you all for your support on my blog and in my Teachers Pay Teachers store! I would like to give YOU a little gift...12 Days of Christmas Freebies!  Today is day 1.  This is a journal page from my "Jiffy Journal Prompts" unit.  There is a topic for each of 20 school days in the month.  I've attached days 1-10 of December for you!  My students love writing in their journals.
Click HERE to download the freebie!

*Thought for today:  Look beyond everything that gets in the way ( behavior, academics, drama)  and just see the child!  Your words may be the only kind words they hear today! :)

                                                     Merry Christmas Freebie Day 1

Sunday, November 30, 2014

It's A Teachers Pay Teachers Sale!

Cyber Monday= Amazing Savings on those products that you've had in your cart or on your wish list for awhile now.  Go ahead and snap up those things you need for December, but you should really think ahead to January as well.  How nice would it be to have your things all ready for January BEFORE you leave school for Christmas Break??? 
My store is an additional 20% off Monday and Tuesday!  Don't forget to enter the promo code: TPTCYBER!
Merry Christmas!
Saturday, November 29, 2014

Letter to Santa Freebie!

The holidays will be here before we blink!  Last year I asked my students to write a letter to Santa.  They were SO serious.  It is the most quiet that they had been in weeks.  The letter to Santa is very serious business!  So, when we return to school on Monday, we will again write our letters to Santa.  I've made a "letter to Santa" writing page for them to use.  I added a few other pages to it and I've put it in my Teachers Pay Teachers store for you FOR FREE!  Here is a look at the pages that you get:

Click HERE to go to my store and download your freebie!  I would love some feedback!  Here we go! Three weeks of Christmas with our Kiddos!
Sunday, November 23, 2014

Celebrating Holidays Around the World!

I finally finished my Holidays Around the World Unit.  I can't wait to use it with my students.  It is a two week unit and covers ELA standards and Social Studies standards.  There are reading passages AND QR codes too!  There is also an ornament craft to make with each of the 8 countries. It is 74 pages of easy, fun December-ness!   Here is a look at some of the pages of  the finished unit.
This unit looks at Australia, Mexico, Germany, France, Italy, Sweden, Hanukkah and England.  To see a longer preview, click HERE to go to my store.  I love it when things serve two purposes.  This unit teaches our students about what Christmas is like in other countries and in other cultures.  That is the great part.  The awesome part is this:  I have decided to let the ornaments that the students make become the Christmas gift for their parents!  I even included a gift envelope pattern in the unit.  So there you go.  Two weeks of reading/social studies planned AND parents present taken care of!  What more could you need!!!  I hope you all have a great Thanksgiving!  Christmas, here we come!
Thursday, November 6, 2014

Fall Writing and Fall Math Freebies!

The hallway display can cause I the only one who thinks this?  At the beginning of school, I sent a poster home for my students to complete.  It was an "All About Me" kind of poster.  So they did the work at home and brought it back.  Bam....instant hallway display.  We all know how busy the beginning of school I think the next time I even thought about the hallway, it was already into October.  So, that ruled out making anything about Halloween, because I know me...and I would have left it up way into Thanksgiving time.  So I thought about it and came up with a Fall writing activity and a Fall math activity.  Voila!  These can take me all the way to December!  I don't know about you, but I'm all for easy.  Here is how they turned out:

For writing, students listed "The Top 10 Things I Love About Fall."  For math, students rolled 3 number cubes to get a 3 digit number.  Then, they show the number  in standard form, with base 10 blocks, expanded form, word form, + 10, + 100, -10, -100,  and tell if it's odd or even. These activities were fun for the kids and turned out so cute!  I've put them in my Teachers Pay Teachers store for free for you!  Click HERE to go to my store to get your FREE copy!  If you download, please leave some comments and let me know how you like it!  Happy Fall Ya'll!
Monday, October 6, 2014

Halloween Center Activities and a Free Math Game

I love October....probably because it takes me until October to get settled into a routine with the new class.  Today we started a new week of centers.  I wish you could walk through my classroom when students are in math centers.  EVERYONE is engaged.  EVERYONE is working...hard!  I love it!  They like being on their own, they like playing games and they love learning new things!  This week in centers, I have a few games to play alone, a game to play with a partner and a 100's board coloring activity.  Here are the games:

The first one is my Autumn Even and Odd Sort.  Students sort the number cards onto the odd or even sorting mats.  After all of the number cards are sorted, students answer the questions on their practice page.  For example, the directions might tell students to take 4 cards from their even mat and put them in order from greatest to least. 

  This Halloween "Spider" themed game was a big hit today. Students have 5 spider web number mats.  They are numbered 1-100, 101-200, 201-300, 301-400 and 401-500.  Students take a numbered spider card and decide which web it goes on.

 After they get all of the numbers sorted onto the correct web, they use this answer sheet.  For example, question 1 asks students to take 4 spider cards from their first web and put them in order from greatest to least, etc.  The students love this game.  I have similar games with numbers up to 1000 in my other center sets as well. And by the way, it amazed me at how some students didn't have any idea about where the spider belonged....once I could get them to think about the enormous number line in their head, or the enormous set of 100's boards in their seemed to click.  So we will see....

Another game called Base 10 Battle.  In this game, students work with a partner.  The first person rolls 2 dice and makes a number.  They show that number on their base 10 mat using base 10 blocks.  The second person rolls the dice and makes a number.  The person who has the biggest number wins that round.  They take a token. (I put 20 counters in a bag to be used as tokens.) After all of the tokens are gone, the game is over and who ever has the most tokens is the winner!  For a variation, the winner would be the student with the smallest number...hopefully logic will kick in and students will realize that if they need to get the biggest number, they will put the dice in order to make the biggest number, etc.  The students really liked this game. 

I've attached a free copy of the directions for the game for you.  Click HERE!
If you liked the Halloween Math Centers, you can see the entire center collection in my Teachers Pay Teachers store.  There are 5 math and 5 ELA centers.  The unit preview looks like this:
To see the unit in my store, click HERE!
I hope your October has gotten off to a great start!  Let me know what you think of the free game.  Happy Teaching!
Thursday, September 25, 2014

Go Ahead and Try Centers, a Free Planning Template and Why I LOVE BINGO Chips!

We have been in school exactly one month today. So this past summer, I've helped my son finish chemotherapy,  I've moved a daughter to college, gotten a classroom ready, started school, helped my son through surgery and completed several weeks of DIBELS and TRC testing.  Things are finally beginning to settle my son is now CANCER FREE!!!  He has battled osteosarcoma, a bone cancer, for the last four years.  He has been so brave!  September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month so if you have a chance to do something to help the fight, please do!  Hopefully now my son can go on with his 16 year old life now and we can be "normal" again! Feeling thankful and blessed!
So,  I am having a great year so far in my classroom. My students are hardworking, sweet to each other and well behaved....more blessings!!! Since it seems to be a great group to work with, I'm excited about what I will be able to do with them this year.  So far we have been busy learning how to be in second grade.  We have learned how to work quietly in centers.  We review center rules every day.  The only thing they need to remember is 1.  STAY in your center....2. Ask 3 then me, and 3. Use a whisper or very quiet voice when you need to ask a team member something.  If you are anti-center, let me tell you a very easy way to implement centers.  You need to plan four center activities for reading centers each week.  Plan four math centers too if you want to do math centers...I personally love math centers because students can practice tons of math skills with games and fun activities.  So, plan four centers.  Divide your class into heterogeneous groups.  This way, the smarter ones can help students who may struggle with something.  While these four centers are going on, I'm pulling kids back to my table to work on reading skills on their level. (Guided Reading Groups)  The kids go to only one center a day for four days.  There is an assigned activity in the center and then I have a basket of other valuable activities that I call "The Finish Line" .  So, for 45-50 minutes, the student is in one center.  They complete their assigned activity, come to my center for a differentiated reading lesson and then go back to the same center to complete some "Finish Line" activities.  Some things I've put in the Finish Line are vocabulary matching games, spelling activities, partner reading, grammar games and books on cd/tape.  One center today....tomorrow they go to the next center.  By Thursday, they will have gone to all four centers.  I find that less movement between centers makes for a more calm learning environment and it allows me to work with small groups.  So, if you have been avoiding centers, give it a try!  I looks like this:
You can get a free copy by clicking HERE! Let me know how you like it!

Now, let me tell you why I LOVE using BINGO chips.  I have found that little kids,....I think second graders are still little kids.... I think that most of them still need practice with one to one correspondence, especially when counting on a 100's board.  I made a game a few years ago.  The kids tossed a small pom pom onto a 100's board.  They draw a card from their stack,  It may say, add 12 to your number, subtract 33 from your number, etc.  They had a very hard time counting on the 100's board with their finger, so I ordered these transparent BINGO chips.  Now we use these for EVERYTHING!  They can add and subtract using 100's boards all the way to 1000.  They use them when playing any math game.  During math warm up time, we take out our hundreds board and a chip.  I tell them to find a number.  Then I may ask them to find the first even number after that number, the 10th number after that number, etc. You can use them in reading too. Yesterday, I had a little boy who was having trouble with the center activity on ABC order.  I got out an ABC strip and a BINGO chip.   I showed him how to put the chip on one letter, look through his cards to see if he had anything that started with that letter, and then he would move the chip to the next letter.  It worked wonderfully.  I've also used BINGO chips when reading with students.  It's small and slides easily on the page.  I've also asked students to "highlight" a word in the story with their BINGO chip.  The uses are endless and they are very, very inexpensive.  I got mine on Amazon for just a few dollars.  300 chips for a few dollars!  Click HERE to see the chips.  They look like this:
The kids LOVE these.  If I still taught Kindergarten, I could think of a million uses for these...if they didn't put them in their mouth. Here is how the boy used the BINGO chip in  the ABC order activity that I mentioned.
You should definitely get some.  And I know, only a teacher would get so excited over BINGO chips.
Another thing that excites me is foam dice but I'll save that for the next post.  Let me know how you use or how you would use BINGO chips in your classroom!  I would love to hear from you.  AND let me know what you think of the workstations or centers planning sheet!
Have fun and teach on!!!
Sunday, August 24, 2014

Back To School and a Freebie!

The time has come.  Tomorrow morning, into my carefully prepared and clean classroom will come 23 smiling, excited faces.  Every year is different and with new kids and new combinations of kids, it's a little like a bubble gum don't know what you will get....but if you love bubble gum, it won't really matter....whatever you get will be wonderful.  So tomorrow comes and I'm mentally going through the day in my mind to be sure I didn't forget anything.  And if tomorrow is like every other "first day of school" I've experienced in my 22 years, it will take on a mind of it's own after about 15 minutes or so.  And I'll rethink, change, add to and take away from those perfectly prepared plans. 
So, this year, I want to make sure that I make my expectations clear to students.  We recently had a refresher meeting on behavior.  We are a PBIS school so we have a great plan in place that clearly states expectations to students.  What I took away from this meeting was that I need to continue to teach, teach again, reteach for the umpteenth time...the rules and expectations.  I don't like spending a lot of time talking about why we shouldn't talk in the hallway. I just tell them and expect them to remember .  Not the case!  I was reminded that we have to constantly reteach....reteach...reteach.  So I'm going to remind myself daily to find that positive talk and reteach as often as necessary.  After all, they are 7 years old.  And so, being the teacher that I am and probably you are too, I created a thing to help remind ME as well as students of expectations in our classroom and school.  I wrote it so that you can use the pages where students are writing quick response answers to questions about rules and procedures, or there is another version that asks students to draw a picture of what it looks like in the hallway, cafeteria, school bus, etc.  You can see it HERE.  I've included a free page of the book here for you for free!  Click here for the freebie!

I would love to hear your thoughts about the first day of school and about how you handle rules and behavior!  Please leave me some feedback.  And one more thing....tomorrow is coming! Let's make it the best year ever!

"Every child should have a caring adult in their lives. And that's not always a biological parent or family member. It may be a friend or neighbor. Often times it is a teacher." Joe Manchin

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Cooperative Learning/ Classroom Seating Arrangements and a First Day of School Freebie!

I don't know about you but I like to change things up a bit in my classroom every year.  I think that the newness of it all kind of energizes me and helps motivate me.  I've moved bookshelves and my teaching table around.  I've reorganized my shelves and cabinets.  But, one thing that I usually do the same every year is the way I arrange my desks.  We had a presenter come to our school several years ago whose focus was cooperative learning.  After the workshop, I immediately ordered a book from Kagan Publishing.  You can visit their site by clicking HERE!  They have tons of resources and they are all wonderful.  I ordered the book Kagan Cooperative Learning.  You can see the book here.  This book is packed with ideas on how to build an environment in your classroom that encourages and supports cooperative learning.  There are many different kinds of learning experiences in this book.  It is a great investment if you want to use cooperative learning in your classroom.

One thing that I like from this book is the kind of seating arrangements that they use to encourage cooperative learning.  Today I am going to focus on seating arrangements.  I have tried  a lot of other ways but I always go back to this one.  First you need to level your kids from highest to lowest.  My school is a DIBELS school so I use their reading fluency scores.  You list the kids from highest score to lowest score.  Now, go down the list and count the first five names.  These are probably the top five kids in your room academically.  Now, count UP from the bottom and get the next five names.  These are the students that may need the most support.  Now, back to the top, go under the first five names you marked and count 5 more.  These are probably the "medium " high kids, and again, go to the bottom, start after the first five and mark the next five.  These are probably your middle/medium low kids.  The kids left in the middle are probably middle kids.  Now you are ready to assign seating. 
I've attached a drawing of how this all works.  The main idea is that a high kid sits beside a medium low kid.  High kids might not have the patience to work with a low kid.  Across the table, we have a medium high or middle beside a low kid.  The medium kids seem to be more patient with low kids.  The kid beside you is called your shoulder buddy.  So, when I assign kids to work on something with a partner I might tell them to work with their shoulder buddy.  **I have to say here that the kids don't know that this arrangement is about ability levels at all.  I think that this would not be good.  So next, we have face buddies.  Middle sits across from high.  Low sits across from medium low, so they are alike academically.  If something that we are doing is differentiated, face buddies would work well together.  So, I write numbers on their name tags (1,2,3 or 4) . If I want to group LIKE abilities, I call, for example.... all 1's meet at the back table, etc.   Sometimes after a lesson, I'll tell all 2's to go to one corner of the room, etc. and tell the kids to share something in their group of 2's that they learned.  The good thing about this system is that you won't have to worry about making groups of kids to do things.  They are already grouped into ability groups by number. You can make mixed groups by calling 1's and 2's meet, 3's and 4's meet, or 1's and 3's meet, etc.  I write the number onto their desk tag with a sharpie and we are ready to go.  If you try this, you will love it and will wonder why you haven't been doing this all along.  I have attached an example list of kids and abilities to show you how to group your class and I have also attached a drawing of the desks and their arrangements.  If you do this, please let me know how you like it!  I would love to hear your thoughts.  Now, we all know that sometimes certain kids CANNOT sit together and changes have to be made, but for the most part, this works beautifully and you can get down to teaching!    Click here to get the directions.

Now, the first day for me is quickly approaching.  You might already be back at school.  I made a first day of school "get to know me" kind of game that I'm putting on here for free!  Click here to get the free game.  Let me know what you think!

Ok, let's get ready! Time to go!
Monday, August 4, 2014

Back To School Sale, An Interactive Math Journal Freebie and Some Inspirational Reading!

It is finished!!!!!  I have been wanting to write an interactive math journal for awhile.  I started back in the spring and as of 10 minutes ago, IT IS FINALLY FINISHED!!!!!  It covers every standard in second grade Common Core Math.  I think the kids will love these activities.  They will be cutting, coloring and gluing WHILE they are doing math.  There are games, flashcards and flip books.  This journal is 252 pages and will last you all school year.  I have listed a freebie below for you.  It is a Race to $1.00 game.  Click HERE to get the freebie!  I hope your kids enjoy the game.  If you want to see the entire journal, click HERE to go to my Teachers Pay Teachers Store.

Now, you may know that for today and tomorrow, Teachers Pay Teachers is having their Back To School Sale.  You can save as much as 28 % off of those products that you really need to start school. 
Now is the time to get Back To School Reading and Math Centers, click here, !0 Days of Back To School Math- this reviews all of First Grade Math, click here, Morning Work For August click here or for my Back To School Memory Book click here.  The great thing is that these items are on sale today and tomorrow!  Happy Shopping!
I'm excited about getting back into my room and getting things ready for the kids to return on August 25. It seems like summer only just started but before we know it, excited, happy kids will be coming in the classroom door.  I know that it is easy to become overwhelmed with everything that needs to be done.  This summer, I have been reading Awakened; Change Your Mindset to Transform Your Teaching by Angela Watson.  This book is very inspiring and I have highlighted a few quotes that I plan to keep near this year to encourage myself! 
"Your mindset is ultimately the reason why you love teaching or despise it."
This is so true and Angela does a great job in this book of helping us see what are healthy thoughts and what kinds of thoughts will just bring us down.  We have a very important, valuable job but we have to admit, it is a very difficult job and the burnout rate is very high.  Angela reminds us to "reframe" negative thoughts, sort out what you know is true and replace negative thoughts with positive ones.  Gosh, I wish she would just come co teach with me!   Let me end with this quote from the book:
"How do some teachers cheerfully give their all day after day in the most troubled and challenging schools? They have optimistic explanatory styles.  They believe that good things are happening and worth focusing on, that problems will not last forever, and that their own efforts are making a positive difference.  The optimist sees setbacks as situation-specific, temporary and changeable."
Ok, so that is a challenge to us all as we approach the new school year.  Buckle up!  Here we go!
Tuesday, June 3, 2014

A Free End of School Acticvity....We did it!

Back in the summer, it seemed a long, long time away!  But now it is here for some of us and just around the corner for others.  We have worked hard, planned extensively, re-planned, laughed, cried? maybe, but  hopefully we have moved a group of sweet kids from point A to point B!  We all get them there in different ways.  If you have taught 2 years or 20 years, you are probably already thinking ahead to next year and what you will do to make it an even better year!  That's just who we are!  I would love to hear what you plan to do differently next year.  I think that I will try to differentiate instruction more for reading and math.  I think that it is important to reach each kid where they are.  I know it sounds impossible but I'm going to give it some serious thought this summer.  So, to celebrate the end of this school year, I'm making my end of the school year iremember book free for 24 hours!  If school is already out for you, print it for next year!  Click HERE for the free book.  Let me know how you like it!  Thanks for following me this school year!  One goal that I have is to blog MORE this summer and next school year!  Have an awesome summer!
Tuesday, May 20, 2014

I've Reached A Milestone! Get your freebie now!

So I've reached  a milestone in my TPT Store! Thank you all so much! I couldn't have done it without your help. To celebrate, I've made my Morning Work for May free until next Sunday, May 25.  Hop on over to my store and get your copy now!  You can click HERE!  This morning work has work for 20 school days.  Each week has four days of work with the fifth day being a test on that week's skills.  I have morning work for every month in the school year.  This morning work is a combination of grammar and math and only takes a few minutes for students to complete.  Check it out and if you like it, please leave me some comments!  Hang in there!  It's almost summer!
Monday, May 5, 2014

Free Mother's Day Poster and It's Time For A Sale!

It seems that Mother's Day always sneaks up on me.  And then I panic and then I ultimately come up with something cute.  I just made a poster that your kids can color/draw/write in for their moms for Mother's Day.  You can get a copy free by clicking HERE!  Here is a look at the poster.
I also have a basket of flowers craft and a coupon book for Mom if you need an easy and inexpensive idea for a gift.  They look like this:

You can look at those in my Teachers Pay Teachers Store.  Click HERE for the flower basket.  Click HERE for the coupon book.
Now, it is time for the Teachers Appreciation Sale on TPT. The sale is Tuesday and Wednesday so you don't want to miss out! I know my cart is filled and ready to go!  Don't forget to stock up on those things that you have been waiting to purchase.  I love this sale! 
So only 24 more school days until summer!  Now would be a great time to buy those Back to School Reading and Math Centers to get ready for the beginning of a new school year!  Happy Teaching!
Thursday, April 10, 2014

Fun With Measuring And Fun Spring Activities With A Freebie!

We are well into enjoying Spring in our classroom.  We have been working on measurement for a few weeks now.  We started with MD 1-6.  The kids really loved measuring each other with this activity from Amy Lemmons.  It's in her measurement pack.  I had the kids get with a partner and then take turns measuring each other with a tape measure and recording their measurements. 

This week we started 2.MD 9-10 which is collecting and using data to make line plots and answer questions about them.  The kids LOVE going around the room and asking all of their classmates their favorite color, ice cream flavor, etc.  We played SCOOT on Tuesday.  Each kid gathered data.  They went around the classroom and measured 12 different objects using inches.  They used this information to make a line plot.  After that, we all wrote the same three questions about the graph.  Next, we played SCOOT.  Each student sat in every desk and answered the same three questions about the graph on each desk.  I think by the time they went to 21 desks and answered questions, they were pros in reading line plots.  They love getting up and moving around!  This measurement unit is full of fun graphing activities. It has lesson plans, a student book, quizzes and homework.  Here is a look at the entire unit. 
You can get it in my Teachers Pay Teachers store by clicking HERE!
So Easter is next week.  It's hard to believe that we are there already!  It's one of my favorite times at school and I love that second graders still love to hide and hunt eggs.  I usually let the boys hide eggs for the girls and then the girls hide eggs for the boys.  After we finish, we divide the eggs up equally so that everyone gets to take home the same amount of eggs and candy.  It works really well for us.  I love making this cute bunny every year too!  We wrote an imaginative narrative last week.  The Easter Bunny left us a note telling us that he had a cold and couldn't deliver the eggs.  He needed us to help so the kids wrote a story about making the eggs and delivering them.  Then they made this cutie!

If you want the pattern for the bunny, it is in my TPT store.  If you want the entire writing pack, it is in my store as well.  Click HERE for the Bunny.  If you want the entire writing unit, click HERE!This unit has activities for the three types of writing that is required in the Second Grade Common Core ELA Standards.  There is a narrative activity, informational and persuasive writing activities with decorative paper to write the completed stories on as well as the pattern for the cute bunny. 
Now for the feebie. I needed a quick writing activity that would brighten up the room and bring spring inside!  I made this quick "Top Ten" list about Spring.  We brainstormed things that we love about Spring and then the kids wrote their top 10 favorite things and drew a picture to go with it.  Here is a look at how they turned out.
This activity is included in my April Printables for Spring.  I've attached it for you for FREE!
Click HERE to get the writing activity.  If you download, I would love some feedback!
That is all for now.  We are almost to Easter Break!  It won't be long until we are all soaking up the sun and relaxing!  Happy Spring! Happy Easter!