Sunday, April 13, 2014

Fill A Basket--Bucket Filling for Easter!

This is our first year into Bucket Filling in my classroom and school.  I like to mix things up a little, to keep things interesting with the kids all year.  We've been busy completing our missions from my Bucket Filling Friendship Club packet.  It has been a great way to get discussions going during our class meeting times as well.

This month I created a little "basket filling" activity.  It's just like my "fill a stocking" packet from Christmas time.  This month we are filling baskets.

Well, I should stop there.  We aren't filling baskets.  I recently received a lot of fun goodies from Creative Teaching Press.  Among them are buckets!  I laminated them and wrote the kiddos names on each.  I then cut paper bags down a little bit, to be "bucket" size and and taped the buckets to the front.  Next year, these will be up all year.  The writing paper will be what changes.

{Bulletin board, using Creative Teaching Press Chevron cut out letters, buckets and fun and festive border!  It also includes our "anchor" chart that we created from my packet at the beginning of the year, as well as our posters about each "sentence starter"}

{Simple bucket bags.  Just laminate the bucket from Creative Teaching Press, write the students' names and tape to a bag!}

{Our bags are taped to the wall below our bulletin board and chalkboard} 

Check out the great "basket fillers" that we have in our class!  (We use sentence starters with our class meetings to compliment our friends.  Those starters are what is included in my packet.)

If you'd like to give it a try, click {HERE} to grab yourself a copy of the writing page and a basket!  (Baskets can be colored and attached to paper bags as well).  If you'd like the buckets, click {HERE} to find them at Creative Teaching Press!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Remember me?! I'm back, I think?!

Hi friends!  This winter has taken a toll on me.  Snow days, delays, sicknesses...  ugh.  I'm ready to just skip spring (hello allergies!) and head to summer!  (or my lack there of, of a summer...)  Anyway, I wanted to just pop in to say I'm alive.  But here's some news as to why I've had such a LONG hiatus!  I miss you all!

We will officially be "out-numbered" in September!  {I should explain this "fun fact."  #1 was 4 weeks early.  #2 was 6 days late.  #3 better come right on time!  How cool would that be?!  If he/she does---I'm totally playing the lottery that day with the number 15!} 

This pregnancy hasn't been the easiest-no morning sickness, but I just haven't felt good-which is why I've been quiet about this.  I've told my coworkers last week, since not being a first time mama---there's NO hiding a little peanut in there anymore!  Not to mention I also battled one cold (which I never get colds!!!), a stomach bug and currently have Bronchitis (with no meds, and not feeling better yet... after a few days..) I've been looking at the bright side of all those snow days we had-as days I could stay at home and "rest"! :)  {rest is loosely used here, but I could sneak in a nap with my youngest each day!)

I will be back soon-with current things to share with you all.  With all of our delays and cancellations, everything we've been doing has been after the fact for you all!  Our 100th day was after President's Day this year....  Valentine's Day was a snow day!  In fact this is our 2nd {somewhat} NORMAL week of school since well before Christmas break!  (and I'm out sick today...  still can't make it a whole week.. and last week we had a delay on St. Pat's day because of snow!)

For those of you about to enjoy a little spring break---enjoy! 

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

28% off?! Yes, please!!!

I'm so excited for TPT's big sale tomorrow.  I'm sure you've seen the buzz everywhere--but if you haven't, so sorry I'm late to the party!  We've got so much going on right now!

My store will be 20% off tomorrow and Friday (Feb 27-28)  Enter the promo code: TPT3 to get an additional 10% off!

I just uploaded a few goodies to my store, in time for the sale to save you some moolah.  Click on any picture below to check them out!  My kids are eating them up right now!  (Yes, I have jumped to St. Patty's day already.  February was just awful with snow and snow days, that I needed to MOVE ON!)  (First 2 are packets that are like my "Rockin' Around the Classroom" and "Frightfully Fun Math/LA Hunts"  I have a blog post in the works to talk about them... and how they will all be renamed to be "Get Up & Go!")
 New Word Work Choice Board (some pics have been posted on my instagram page--if you don't follow me--click on the camera at the side!):

Of course, here are some oldies but goodies that are getting used again and again by me and many other people!
{I'm actually in the process of updating this little packet!  If you purchased it, keep an eye out in the next few weeks for a revision!  It's due for a make over!}
 {We'll be starting this fluency packet in the next few weeks...  It would have started in January, but this is our FIRST full week, without delays or snow days since before Christmas!}
{We are moving on to this unit next in math.  I can't wait to get these out to use.  What a difference it makes once you have things prepared from the year before!  This unit can really be used at any time during the year}
{We just finished this unit.  We are still in the process of writing Robert Munsch.  He "writes" back!  it's pretty awesome!}
{This is still new, but my kiddos are eating this up in the classroom!  Love my little bucket fillers!}
{I still think this is my most favorite unit ever made.  I big, puffy <3 Mo.}

{We will be starting this with some of my kiddos in my reading group in a few weeks!}

{This pack is starting this week!}
{We have our fairy tale unit coming up in the next week or so---so excited to use this one again!  My kids loved it last year!}
{Ah, Skippy....  I'll be using this coming up in May.  We have an animal unit for reading---Skippy is an animal... and these books fit perfectly around Cinco de Mayo!}
{I love this unit too.  I'm going to miss it next year!}
{I've been using parts of this all year.  The kids just love Splat and Pete!}

Well, what are you waiting for?!  The sale kicks off at midnight tonight!!!!  Happy shopping! :)

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Thursday, February 13, 2014

Class Books, snow, freebies..

So much for sharing what I'm working on with writing on Wednesdays!  We have had quite a memorable winter, to say the very least.  And snow days for me mean---I get nothing done.  My kids keep me busy, or are sitting right on top of me doing things...  :(  (In fact, it's been really difficult to find things that will help you all, or inspire you because we haven't had consistency and are behind!  We haven't had our 100th Day yet, and it appears that our Valentine's Day party will be after President's Day!!!) :/

I wanted to share what I do in my classroom with class books.  By no means am I the creator of this!  We frequently, weekly/bi-weekly write to a prompt that I turn into a class book.  Sometimes it's more than a prompt and it's the kids writing "research" about different things we've done in other areas.  I bind them with a page in the back for parents to sign and write a positive comment to the class.  The students love sharing these books with their parents!  (Not to mention, it also gives parents a glimpse inside the classroom to see how their own child is doing!  Are they writing as much as the others?  Is their handwriting readable??)

Of course, my freebie is a little late to use this year, if you are one to want to do it BEFORE Valentine's Day, but it is something you can do afterwards.  I had my kids write what they thought "Love is in the air" means.  I LOVE their responses.  This one was all their writing--no rewriting.  I did underwrite a few words to help parents out.  Take a look at a few of their pages:

Click {HERE} to grab yourself the writing page and the book cover for "Love is in the air."

I also had my kids write to Mother Nature before we left on Wednesday, since the big nor'easter was heading our way.... and we might not see each other for 5 days...  Here's a few of their adorable responses! 

Click {HERE} to grab yourself a copy of the writing page and class book cover for Mother Nature.  (Mother Earth is also in there, since that's what I used first... It was a spur of the moment activity and what I had created for Earth Day last year!)

This is the parent sheet I put behind every book made, and I also have a copy of the note I send home with the first few books.  I send the books home in ziploc bags.  I tried big envelopes... laminated and not.  Neither lasted.  Ziplocs are cheap and easy!  And so far the books have held up just fine by going to all 20 homes!  {click on the pictures to download a copy for yourself!}

LAST-what I do with the books at the end of the year!  I disassemble the books and create books for each student to take home filled with all of their writing throughout the year.  It's a great keepsake.  If you read THIS post, there's a little bit of info about the covers I used at the end of the post.  (freebie too!)

Friday, February 7, 2014


Well, I had my first full day today---in what feels like forever.  I'm a bit jealous of all the pics out there for the 100th day.  Sad to say ours isn't until February 19th, so my festivities will not be of much help for you all this year!  ;)

I wanted to share what I'm doing for my Valentines this year in class and what I whipped up for my oldest for his at school!  Mine is a repeat from last year.  You can read about that post {HERE}  We've had 6-7 (I lost count) snow days in January alone... and I'll be going to school till just about July!  ugh.....  (and I know all about how February has major snow storms!  I was born in one!  My bday is always around President's Day...)  Fingers crossed for a mild and snow-less February (and March, while I'm at it!!!!!)  My littlest and I made these for our classes on one of our snow days.  My tip for this project is at the end of the school year, collect all the crayons from the kids....  BONUS!  Have them peel the crayons before giving them to you.  My class LOVED doing this last year, and it was super quiet while they did it... almost therapeutic!  haha!

Here's what I whipped up for my oldest.  He just got that Rainbow Loom for the holidays.  Of course, he doesn't like to stay in one place for very long... so I talked him into making his classmates bracelets for Valentine's Day.  After explaining to him how it's a nice gesture making things for others because it means you were thinking of them......  He made his bracelets.  (Of course, they are the VERY basic... cause, it's what I would expect of him!  lol  I feel like I need to add that he is in his school's gifted program... so he is smart---but he's a "work smarter, not HARDER" kind of kid...)  I created this little card to use.  I punched a hole (with a heart hole puncher of course!  That's how I roll!) and we attached the bracelets through the hole!  All he needs to do now is write everyone's names!  I LOVE how it turned out! 

If you'd like a copy of these cards, click on the picture below!

Happy Valentine's Day friends!  I hope to have more things to share soon... that is, if we can just get this winter OVER WITH!!!!  

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