Sunday, April 28, 2013

Earth/Arbor Day and a winner!

Friday we celebrated Earth/Arbor Day at my school. We are an environmental science magnet so we do it up pretty big. There is an outdoor assembly in front of our class garden beds and all the classes  sing songs related to Earth Day. Then the classrooms are open for other classes and visitors to view our Earth Day projects. We made recycled insects since it goes along with our huge insect unit we are doing right now.

The third grade rooms are always impressive because they make these amazing totem hats to represent the animal they did their report on. They have a closing ceremony and all the kids wear their hat and parade around.
Can you believe how huge this hat is?
Taller than a first grader (well, when it is on the desk.)

There were so many more terrific ones but I think this post is going into picture overload already so I will stop.

The whole school also got to help plant a tree for Arbor Day. I think that will be kind of cool when they are older and remember that they helped plant that tree.
Congrats to Lorena for winning my updated Mother's Day Gift Ideas packet! Thanks to all that  entered and follow me!


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Mother's Day updated!

So I had a sweet follower ask very nicely if I could add some alternative pages to my Mother's Day Gift Ideas packet. Seems there are certain areas of the country that coffee is taboo so she was hoping the coffee could be changed to cocoa in the If You Give a Mom a Muffin booklet. {Note to self: never move wherever that is!}  I thought that wouldn't be too hard so I agreed. {I have posted all about how I do this project with my kiddos here and here.}

 HA, I should have know better! 

This file is old and it seems that the old version of Word doesn't play nicely with the new version I have. So after fighting it for awhile I remade the whole thing in PowerPoint (my new love.) Of course, I had to use some new cuter frames. Then I got ambitious and tried my hand at making my own muffin clip art for the cover...we have an ink shortage and my students love to color.
Since I had so many pictures for the illustration ideas I had to reduce the file size, but that made the frames blurry. Grrr...

I figured a work around that but then the pdf would print with extra white space which made the pages not perfectly aligned when you cut them in half.... ARG!!!!!! Isn't technology supposed to simplify your life? I guess some of it is me being very particular but darn it, after all the time I spend making something I want it to look like I intended when it prints out!!

After much searching on Google I FINALLY figured out how to fix this annoying problem once and for all! I danced around the house chanting, " I did it, I'm awesome, I fixed it..." My 5th just laughed at me. My 7th grader waited until I stopped my strutting and then said with a straight face, "How did that go again?" Wise guy!

Anyways....the point of this long story is....I have revised my packet so if you already own it you can go download the update for free.  If you don't have a plan for a Mother's Day gift yet, you can check it out here. I think making their mom in bed might be their favorite part...maybe I'll take a poll this year to see if I am right.

They are always SO proud to take this gift home. It is adorable to watch them decide which flavor of muffin they think their mom would like the best. I've even had some admit they are really hoping their mom will share the muffin with them! LOL, gotta love first graders!

I love sharing with my loyal followers so enter below for your chance to win a FREE copy!
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Sunday, April 21, 2013

FREE Pizza Fractions Craft

Fractions make me hungry. So many of my explanations and word problems had to do with food this week! As we delve into the Common Core,  we are finding the need to supplement more. I felt my students were understanding fractions pretty well but that the vocabulary of fourths and quarters needed reinforcement. I remembered seeing a pizza craft on Mrs. Ricca's Kindergarten so I adapted it to fit my standard.

CCSS.Math.Content.1.G.A.3 Partition circles and rectangles into two and four equal shares, describe the shares using the words halves, fourths, and quarters, and use the phrases half of, fourth of, and quarter of. Describe the whole as two of, or four of the shares. Understand for these examples that decomposing into more equal shares creates smaller shares.

I provided a template for the crust and cheese but not for the toppings. I demonstrated how to make all the toppings and let them loose with 1 1/2 x 12 strips of the correct colors. They did a great job.

To get a FREE copy of my templates and more detailed directions click {HERE.} I changed the frame on the writing piece so it would pop more.

Congrats to Julene on winning my Fly Guy Book Club 2 Pack!
Have a great week!


Sunday, April 14, 2013

Fly Guy Obsession

I am having a REALLY hard time getting myself to face up to the fact that my Spring Break is over. My boys and I enjoyed the fun and sun in Palm Desert. Lots of golf and reading by the pool.

I am working on lesson plans and laundry but thought I'd take a quick break to share my newest book club packet. My students are OBSESSED with Fly Guy so I thought I would capitalize on that in my guided reading groups. I bought I Spy Fly Guy! and Shoo, Fly Guy! from Scholastic Book Clubs using my points. I had fun making another craft to go with this packet.

This packet includes:
*comprehension questions (including story structure & predicting)
*Sounds of Y cut and glue sort
*a parts of speech cut and glue sort
*Guess My Food activity with adjectives
*Fly Guy peek-over craft
*Double Bubble map to compare and contrast the two stories
*answer keys

You can click {here} to visit my store or enter below to win a FREE copy. Alrighty, off to try to wrap my head around going back to school tomorrow. Waaaa...I  need another week off!

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Sunday, April 7, 2013

Winner and the Longest Day Ever

I'm finally on Spring Break! Thursday I had 38 students all day due to a sub shortage.  Has that ever happened to you? The sub didn't show and the teacher had her phone off for the training so didn't know they wanted her to come back. It was the longest day EVER! I don't understand why my district limits the number in the sub pool? Can it really hurt to have more names to call? Clearly we need more.

I'm off to the airport to go see my family in Palm Desert but I wanted to pop in and announce the winner of my new Splat the Cat Sings Flat book club packet is Susie Stallard!

I'll be using these the week we get back...
and I have a few more I am in the process of making packets for. I hope to get them done this week but I have promised myself I am going to relax and give myself some me time, too. The pool is calling me.

Crazy mom has requested an IEP for 8 AM the Monday we get back for no apparent reason. I think she is just doing it because she can.  So I am really trying NOT to think about the fun that awaits me on my return.

Hopefully I will fit in some blog reading time so I can catch up with you all.


Monday, April 1, 2013

Splat the Cat Sings Flat

4 more days until my Spring Break. I can make it! I had my doubts there for awhile. My class was EXTREMELY (ridiculously, unimaginatively, insanely)  talkative and I was seriously at my wits end. In desperation I changed my behavior system to Class Dojo. The change was immediate and I felt like I could finally hear myself think!  I'd kiss those Dojo guys if they didn't live so far away. Well, that and my hubby probably wouldn't like it too much.
I've been working on some new book club packets. My students are so excited to be a part of these book clubs. They are funny, they covet the book packets that other groups get assigned. Today a group literally cheered when they saw that they got to read Junie B. Dumb Bunny next.

Are you a Splat the Cat fan? When I saw Splat the Cat Sings Flat was available from Scholastic SeeSaw January for only $1 I snapped up 6 copies for my guided reading groups. This book is an Accelerated Reader level of 1.8.

Comprehension Questions

Parts of Speech sort with words from the story.

A choice of 2 text-to-self writing responses with a peek-over craft!
Click {HERE} to go check this packet out. As usual, I'd like to give a copy away to a loyal follower.
Just enter below and I will pick a winner on Sunday when I am finally enjoying my Spring Break!
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