Sunday, July 28, 2013

Addition Fun With Buggy Friends

My newest  math center package is now out-    Addition Fun With Buggy Friends.  

This first set contains 20 addition facts (addends 1-5).  Each addition fact is written in two different ways.  Set A shows the facts using words and Set B shows the facts with numbers. Both sets have cute little buggy critters and flowers to represent the  equation.  The students then add and find the correct sum card.  I've included 2 recording sheets for the student to write the math equation. There are 6 different ways to use the cards and you can even set up 4 math centers at once!  Click on the title above to check it out.
Have a great day!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Liebster Award

I was pleasantly surprised to find out that Ms. Hamm from
Ms. Hamm's First Grade Funland has nominated me for the Liebster Award. The Liebster Award is given to up and coming bloggers who have less than 200 followers. So, what is a Liebster?  The meaning: Liebster is German and means sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome. Isn't that sweet? Blogging is about building a community and it's a great way to connect with other bloggers and help spread the word about newer bloggers/blogs. I am so happy to be a part of this community.

So here are the rules (we all know we must follow them Smile)
1.  Link back to the blog that nominated me. 
2. Answer the questions posted for me by my nominator.
3.  Share 11 random facts about myself.
4.  Create 11 questions for my nominees.
5.  Nominate 5-11 blogs with fewer than 200 followers. 
6.  Contact my nominees to let them know that I nominated them.

Here are the 11 Questions that Ms. Hamm asked me:
1. What type of behavior management do you use in your classroom?
I use the Punch Card system.  Each week every student gets a Punch Card ( a 5x8 index card) and writes their name on it.  When the student makes good choices or answers questions correctly, he/she receives a punch (a star hole punch).  If the child says please or thank you they are awarded another punch.  When a child misbehaves and has been warned to stop that behavior, they receive an X on the card.  On Friday, the children with the most punches and no Xs visit the Treasure Box.  The card is sent home to be signed.  When the child returns the card signed, he/she receive 10 extra punches on their new weekly card.  If a child gets 4Xs, they are not allowed to participate in Show & Tell.  That is a big deal for them and rarely do students get 4 Xs.  Our First grade has used this system for years and it works.  The parents get a weekly update on their child's behavior and it is great documentation for Child Study Team.
2. How do you get parents involved?  
Parents get updates from the Punch Cards and they sign assessments and return them so they are aware of what is going on with their child's progress.  During curriculum night, I go over how they can help their child at home and I send home a packet of directions.  I conference with all of my parents at least once a Trimester.  When we do special events, (pumpkin carving, involved science experiments etc.) I send home an invitation to come in and help.  Usually the same parents volunteer.
3. What your favorite sweet treat?
I have so many of them, that has caused a serious diet and exercise plan this summer.  For a school pick-me-up I love a snack mix with M&Ms and something salty. (bad) For a special occasion I like chocolate cake with chocolate frosting or carrot cake. (very bad) But the best has to be the Hummingbird cake with cream cheese frosting that my step-daughter has made me for several birthdays.  It's to die for! (extremely bad) LOL
4. If you were stuck on a deserted island, what are your 4 MUST HAVES?
I am spoiled so that only 4 must haves wouldn't do it for me.  But if you insist and I can't include my family I would have to have a murder mystery book, that M&M and something salty mix, a giant container of Ice Tea (unsweetened) and my iPhone with my music.
5. What’s one thing you created or want to create to use/display in your classroom this year?
My classroom theme is Froggy Everything.  I created a 120 chart with a cute froggy in the background poster which a friend laminated for me since it was so big.  I also made a smaller version for each student to have on their desk.
6. How do you infuse technology into your teaching?
I have an iPad and the school lets me check out another one.  They are full of great apps for kids.  My favorite is the Dr. Seuss stories.  My kiddies will watch them over and over.  They have sound effects and highlight each word as it is read to them.  They also allow the student to read them to themselves.
I have a doc camera which I use much of the day.  We use digital cameras to document our work and display the pics.  I also just found the old cassette players new on Amazon.  I have a ton of books with story tapes from Scholastic and now with 5 players I have a very cool center.
7. What is your favorite sport?
I like watching football if the Packers are playing. Go Cheese Heads! I really enjoy biking. I try to put 20 miles on my bike a day during the summers.  Once school starts however, the time for biking falls to the wayside and usually I only get time to bike on the weekends.
8. If you could take a trip to any place in the world where would you go? Why?
I would love to go to Italy.  I have never been and it looks so romantic from the movies and pictures that I have seen.
9. What is your favorite hobby when not teaching?
I love making fun learning games.  My mind is constantly thinking of new things to make. I think it might almost be an illness?? LOL
10. What is your favorite quote?
"A Teacher Takes a Small Hand, Opens a Mind and Touches a Heart"
11. What is your teaching philosophy?
FUN!  I try to make all the learning experiences in my room fun and exciting.  I love seeing them get excited to learn.

           11 Interesting Facts About Me
1.  I am married to the most amazing husband ever!
2.  I am obsessed with Pandora charms.
3.  I have the sweetest step-daughters ever.
4.  I am the oldest of 4 children.
5.  I used to be an insurance agent.
6.  I had several torn tendons in my ankle which caused me to teach from a Knee walker or wheelchair on and off for 3 years.  (I have now been walking on 2 feet for the last 2 years!)
7.  I have had every color cast that they make and had to resort to a two color cast for one of my last ones.
8.  I can re-purpose any used container into something wonderful.
9.  I began college wanting to be a Pediatrician.
10.  This is my 30th year teaching and I still am passionate about it.
11.  My best friend is my sister Jodi.

        11 Questions for my Nominees
1.  If you couldn't be a teacher, what would you be instead?
2.  If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live?
3.  What do you have planned for your kiddies to do first thing in the morning?
4.  Who is your favorite author?
5.  Which subject is your favorite to teach and why?
6.  What is your favorite sweet treat?
7.  If you were given 12 different colored sponges, what would you do or make with them?
8.  Tell me about the most wonderful thing that has happened in your classroom.
9.  Would you encourage someone to go into teacher? Why or why not?
10.  If you were on a deserted island, what would be your 4 must haves?
11.  How many years have you been teaching?

My nominees for the Liebster Award are:
Carrie from The First Grade Derby
Haley from My Silly Firsties
Kaitlyn from Wicked Fun In First Grade
Lindsay from First Grade With A Twist

Congratulations Ladies and I can't wait to hear all about you!  Please link your Liebster post back to me.

Monday, July 15, 2013

New Decoding Games with R-Blends

Let me share with you one of my newest activities package.
  Allie Alligator Matching Fun with "or" Words-

This package is full of learning activities for a whole week!  There are 30 "or" words to match to the correct picture, recording sheets, comprehension reading with "or" words, and even an Allie Alligator Fun card game.  Click on the title to see more!

On Sunday we celebrated my birthday with the family.  We had a great time even though it was raining cats and dogs.  Can you believe that Candy Land, a Barrel of Monkeys and a gift card to the Dollar Store was on my list? What's even better is that I got all 3 of them plus Froggy 3D stickers, an iTunes gift card and 2 beautiful beads for my Pandora charm bracelet.  I really felt like a queen for the day.  To top it off we had a delicious carrot Birthday cake!  Good thing I took my bike ride in the morning to burn off those extra calories.
Talk to you soon!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

48 Hour Freebie!!!!

Well it is about time for a special 48 hour Freebie.....  Wait for it...... Wait for it......
Need more practice with "ar" words?  Here is....

Cute little Barney Bear helps children practice those words containing the "ar" sound.  This game contains enough lotto cards for 6 players.  There are 16 word/picture cards and 40 Barney Bear cover-up cards.  Once you give the students the directions, they can play by themselves.  This is great for Word Work or as a center activity. Click on the title above to pick it up!  Hurry, the freebie is only good for 48 hours!!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

New Summer Linky Party

Celebrate the Summer with my new blogger friend Amy Harrod and her first Linky Party.

I would like to share a great one of my New TPT Products-
This package includes 48 card that students can match word-picture.  It can also be used as a memory game or a teaching tool.  For more information check it out here.  So join the Linky and share some Summer Fun with us.

Let's celebrate summer together! 

Two Great Teaching Aids....

1. Finding the reading level of your classroom library books-

Do you need help finding the reading levels for your classroom library. I did! I don't know how many hours I spent last summer trying to look up the levels through different websites. It was very frustrating, but I knew it had to be done. Well I found the answer that I had been wishing for. I don't recall which wonderful blog that I found this on, but in case you haven't seen it, here it is.

It is an app that will literally scan the ISBN bar code and give you the Lexile, Guided Reading Level, Grade Equivalent level and the DRA levels for over 150,000 books. They are constantly updating their data base. This little app does even so much more. You can create a digital roster to track beginning and current reading level. Also you can keep track of who borrowed which book from your classroom! There is even more that it does. For only $2.99 it is a must have. Check it out here-

2.  Easy Bar Graphing-

Recently I was on which if you haven't checked into it, has amazing ideas for the classroom which are FUN and inexpensive.  The latest idea that I will definitely try next year is sponge bar graphing.  You need to get some thick multi-colored sponges from a Dollar Store.  Each morning, you put up a Poll on the board.  For example, which pet is your favorite?  The students come up, take a sponge and lay it on the tray above the type of pet.
So easy, quick and fun.  The children can easily see the bar graph and since they had a part in it, they want to be involved in your discussion. Now you can ask the graphing questions.  I love it and have put sponges on my shopping list.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

4th of July Sale at my TPT Store

This is the start of the birthday week.  Our country and my very own on the 3rd.  I would like you to come visit my store for a 20% off sale.  This sales starts is from July3-July4th.  

Visit 24/7 Teacher
to find her Star Spangled 100 Follower Give Away.  Who knows, you might be a winner of some amazing prizes.

Blog Lovin' Hop Winners and Let's Get Acquainted

Let me begin by congratulating my winners from the Bloglovin' Hop.  Since my birthday is tomorrow and the 4th of July is Thursday, I decided to not only pick 2 winners, but 4 winners.  Congratulations to:
1.  Barbara
2.  Stephanie M.
3.  Mrs. Reinartz
4.  Rachael

Thank you for following me and good luck next time.

Topic- Tic Tac Toe
How it Works:  Look at the graphic below.  It is a Tic Tac Toe board filled with different categories.  You will post about three of these categories but they have to make Tic Tac Toe.  For example, you can choose to write about 3 topics that go vertical, or 3 topics that go horizontal, or three topics that go diagonal. 

I am doing the first vertical column.

I went to college at Marquette University in Milwaukee, WI.  I was a commuter, so I didn't really experience the college life.  One of my favorite memories was when school closed early for a huge snowstorm.  My friend and I battled the storm back to my house.  We took the toboggan and headed for the favorite hill at a nearby park.  Bundled up we headed down the hill.  The toboggan was just a bit long for only 2 people and we continued to topple over again and again.  Back at my house we warmed up with hot cocoa.  We had a blast!

My first year teaching was the start of a wonderful new adventure. I moved to Florida (by myself) and started at a little migrant school way out in Wimauma.  My first graders would bring me cauliflower and tomatoes as gifts.  It was pretty cool, since this was so new to me. On my first day teaching I took the kids outside for PE and when we returned I told them to line up at the bubbler.  Much to my dismay, they wandered around the hall (apparently looking for this "bubbler").  Again I told them to line up at the bubbler to no avail.  Finally I pointed to the bubbler and they told me that this was no bubbler, this was the water fountain.  Where I come from a water fountain shot water out of some thing's mouth and was a decorative piece.  LOL I learned something new that day.  Apparently only a small piece of the country calls it a bubbler.

My favorite grade to teach is 1st.  It was and will always be.  I love the curiosity of a six year old.  I can amaze them with the simplest thing as long as I appear amazed myself.  I love the way that they can instantly pretend along with me that I am hearing something or seeing something to engage them in a lesson. "Why look over there, I see ____."  "Oh yes, we see it too."  The best part is when they get that "Ah ha" look on their face.  That makes it all worth it.  They are such precious little children that I am entrusted to teach them all that I can. I wouldn't trade them for any other grade. 

Now it is your turn to Link Up and share.... 

Monday, July 1, 2013

Fun With r-controlled Words

Mighty Monster Matching Fun With "er" Words is one of  five my new packages that help students recognize and use r-controlled vowels.

This package has 60 cards and 5 different center activities to use for a whole week.  The Mighty Monster Fun Card game is a blast and the course of the game can change from minute to minute.  Click above to see more.  This package is selling for $4.00, but you can save money and buy the Combo package which includes all 5 packages for only $12.00!