Friday, February 20, 2015

Hundreds Chart Help!

Do you have students who just don't get how to navigate a hundreds chart? Well I sure do! That's why I created my newest on the picture to view it in my store!

Don't you just love the froggy and rabbit? They are from Pink Cat adorable! Take a look at the table of contents from this pack to see everything that's included!

The frog "hoppers" are a fun way for students to keep track of their hops on the hundreds chart. Take a look at how I made my frog hoppers...

I printed the frog hoppers page on cardstock. You can use bingo chips for this part, but I bought this bag of gems from the dollar store instead. 

I cut out the frog hoppers and hot glued them to the gems. They make a perfect little tool for students to use as they learn to navigate and take hops on the hundreds chart!

*This pack focuses on the +10 and -10 shortcut/trick on a hundreds chart 

Monday, February 16, 2015

Telling Time: 5 minute interval fun!

I'm super excited that I finished this huge pack BEFORE I actually teach telling time with 5 minute intervals! It's always such a tricky concept for my students to grasp. I do math centers every Friday and wanted to create some fun games that help students practice telling time. It's 100 pages in all!

Check out the preview below to take a peek into this pack!

My class loves playing Scoot to practice different concepts. So I had to create a Scoot game for this pack. I created 3 different versions of Scoot to help differentitate this concept. The first version just has analog clocks that students must identify the digital time for. The second version is the same except it has analog clocks with 5 minute interval helpers for students who are having trouble telling time with 5 minute intervals. The third version is for students who have already mastered telling time and need a challenge. These Scoot cards have elapsed time questions to answer.

A total of 7 fun games are included in this pack:
*Time Bump
*Swat the Clock
*Scoot- 2 versions; one with interval helpers and one without
*Scoot- 3rd version is a challenge
*Clip Clocks- for independent practice
*Cuckoo Clocks

Also included in this pack:
*a clock poster labeled with the 5 minute intervals
*a clock poster divided into quarters to help with o'clock, quarter past, half-past, and quarter to
*5 minute interval circles to put around your classroom clock
*4 practice pages

Click below to get yours from my TPT shop!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Valentine's Day: A gift for parents

Need an easy gift to give parents from your students for Valentine's Day? I created an easy, print and go poem book for students to write in and illustrate. 

Students fill in the blanks and illustrate
Take a picture of each student "blowing hearts" out of their hands and glue photo into last page. This is such a cute and easy keepsake to put together for parents!

Click below to get yours!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

The best 2015 ever!

13 weeks pregnant

It's been so so long since I've even been on my blog!!!! I spent most of October and November in complete and utter shock! As you can see in the photo above, I've got a bump. This bump is truly an amazing blessing from God. Here's a little history on this blessing:
After spending years and years AND years trying to have a child, with several failed fertility treatments, my husband and I took a giant leap of faith and did IVF on 11-11-11. We were beyond happy when it worked, the first time! This led to the birth of our son in 2012.  In 2013, we wanted to expand our family so we tried 2 more cycles of IVF, which both did not work. We were disappointed to say the least. It wasn't until the fall of 2014 that I had finally made peace within myself that our boy was enough. He was the perfect boy I thought I'd never have and he was enough.  I was done with the fertility drugs. I was done with the long drives to my Dr. office. I was done focusing on the need to give my son a sibling. I. was. done.
Or so I thought!
In October 2014, I started feeling strange. I started having some of the classic early pregnancy signs; bloated belly, tiredness, etc. I took a VERY early pregnancy test (just a few days before my expected period) and was confused to see a very faint second line. I thought, "no.... it must be wrong." Little did I know, it was picking up the little amount of HCG that was developing in my body. So I gave it 2 days like the box said. I took it again and that darn second line was a tad darker! Still..... after not being able to get pregnant on our own for 7 years, I couldn't believe it. I gave it another day or so. I ended up taking a total of 4 pregnancy tests to be sure!

I'll never forget that last test. I woke up early, 5:00 a.m. because it was on my mind. I went into our bathroom, did the test and was shocked to see it so dark. In shock, I walked out of the bathroom towards my sleeping husband in bed with the stick in my hand. My arm was shaking. Through my tears I said, "Honey, wake up, wake up. There are two lines. There are two lines. There are two lines." I'll never forget my husband's face. He blinked hard to get his eyes ready to open. He looked at that stick and started laughing, "there are two lines, there are two lines baby, we're having another baby!" 

I wanted to share this story on my teaching blog for a reason. If my story can give one person/teacher out there hope, then I've done a very important thing. Struggling to conceive is one of the most difficult things someone can go through. It's such an emotional, personal, heartbreaking struggle that only someone experiencing it can truly understand. You feel like you're alone. You feel helpless. You feel sad when it seems that everyone around you is pregnant. You feel stressed about ovulation. Your heart breaks every month when you get your period. It's truly the most difficult thing my husband and I have faced as a couple. So if you are reading this right now and are experiencing infertility issues, hang on, don't give up, believe in miracles, believe in God's timing...just believe.

7 weeks

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Organization Station for Small Groups!

If you're anything like me, your small group area gets piled up with stuff rather quickly. As a first grade teacher, I'm always looking for fun and novel things to motivate my little readers. So where does one put all of this fun must have stuff???? Well.... I must admit, until this year I had no real system in place to store my small group materials. I'd find myself searching for my comprehension things, tearing apart a shelf to find my fun pointers, and had leveled books in a crate on the floor divided up with folders. I was so sick of feeling unorganized during my small groups time of Reader's Workshop. So I decided to create a little organization station near my kidney table. I went to Walmart and bought 2 three drawer carts (click on the picture to take you right to it!):

I wanted big drawers to keep each of my small groups' books for the week.  I usually visit our school guided reading library once every two weeks to check out leveled books for my small groups. This way, I'm all set to go for small groups for 2 weeks at a time.

I also wanted to have a place for my other small group goodies so I bought another Sterilite drawer cart, this one has 4 drawers:
I like the shallower small drawers on top for things like pointers and extra copies of my conferring forms. The bottom 2 drawers hold my comprehension stuff and word work materials. I took the wheels off of each cart so they would stay stationary and lined up in a row! 

I knew that I had to create some fun labels for my drawers and that Melonheadz kids would be featured. Click on the picture below to check out my Small Groups Organization Station in my TPT store.

You can see everything in this pack in my preview!

I love having all of my small group materials in one place!

I just used numbers for each group. But if you distinguish groups
by COLOR, that option is included in my pack.

I hope this organization station can help you organize your small groups too!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Sensory Words w/ Applesauce :)

I'm excited to make applesauce in my first grade classroom tomorrow! I just love the smell of homemade applesauce on a cool Michigan fall day! Although the weather is going to be rather warm, 75 degrees... which I will totally take in September! During Writer's Workshop, we will be talking about sensory words and how writers use them to add PIZAZZ to any story. Click on the picture below to snag a copy of this applesauce sensory words recording sheet!
Happy fall!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Cultivating BRAVE young writers!

Well... it's week 2 and writer's workshop is in full swing! My first grader know how to get writing supplies, the noise level expectations, what to do in a writing conference, how to get a new pencil, where to get new paper, what to do when they think they're done, and finally.... what to do when they need to spell a tricky word! Which brings me to this post!

The first day of writer's workshop is always so exhausting! Kids are up out of their seats showing you their papers and all you can hear is, "How do you spell____?"  over and over again! I couldn't wait to get to the BRAVE lesson that I started doing last year. I thought that the song BRAVE by Sara Bereilles was absolutely perfect for this teaching point. I play the song for the kids (you can just find it on youtube) and we listen to JUST the chorus (there is a part at the very beginning that mentions the words "weapon" and "drug" so I skip that part and pause it right when the chorus is about to begin. The words ARE SO PERFECT for writing. The chorus says, "Say what you wanna say, and let the words fall out, honestly... I wanna see you be brave!" So many times, my first graders are hesitant to write because they don't know how to spell the words. When I conference with students and ask them to write what happened next, many of them say, "but I don't know how to write that." Then they end up avoiding writing just because they don't have the confidence to stretch out the words the best they can.

After this lesson, the chorus from the song is our mantra for spelling during writer's workshop! I love how it says to let the words fall out. I tell the kids to let their words fall out of their brains right onto their paper and to be BRAVE as they attempt to spell!

I made this little poster to post in our writing area as a reminder. Click on it below to download it for FREE from my TPT store. Don't forget to follow me so you don't miss my upcoming freebies!