Friday, August 1, 2014

Super Back to School Sales, Five for Friday, & a Giveaway!

http://doodlebugsteaching.blogspot.com/p/i-love.htmlI've been super busy this week crafting some fun projects for my classroom, packing for Disney, and getting my two year old son ready for a peanut challenge. I did want to take some time to stop in and link up for Five For Friday to share some good, some bad, and some exciting news.

So first off, I am teaching Social Studies for the first time this year. I am excited and nervous and hoping my TPT and Blog friends can help me plan my way through the year. When I ran into my classroom for a quick second this week, I noticed the lovely (yuck) globes had been passed on to me. Where the heck am I going to store these!?


Did you hear about the quick sale at Educents? From July 30 - August 2 (Wednesday - Saturday), they are bringing back all of their favorite and most popular bundles for INSTANT download at up to 77% OFF! There is something for everyone and it is their BIGGEST sale of the year!

http://www.educents.com/poetry-curriculum-and-activities-bundle.html#Pinkadots

http://www.educents.com/poetry-curriculum-and-activities-bundle.html#Pinkadots

Ready for another Back to School Sale? Ready or not, it's coming!! Everything in my store will be marked 20% off, except my bundles will be marked down 10% since they are already such a huge savings. Then, use the code BTS14 to get an ADDITIONAL 10% off! That's a huge savings! You can really stock up on some awesome stuff to get ready for your year! Need some ideas of what to buy?

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Pinkadots-Elementary

Here are the two most wishlisted items in my store: My most wishlisted item in my store is my most recent! Our Morning Work Bundle for the WHOLE YEAR will only be $24.00 during the sale! Our Reward Coupons are also huge hit and even more of a deal while on sale!

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/ELA-Morning-WorkBell-Work-BUNDLE-PACK-40-WEEKS-ENTIRE-YEAR-Monthly-Themed-1317892

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Reward-Coupons-60-Coupons-PERFECT-for-Classroom-Management-542106


And of course, my wishlist keeps growing, but I have to share something with you that I'm going to buy during the sale!  The Complete NO PREP Reading & Writing Units for 40 Popular Mentor Texts will only be $18 during the sale! This will be PERFECT for my kiddos this year! In fact, after I grab this goodie, I am heading to Barnes & Noble to make sure I own each and every book used in the bundle.
http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Complete-NO-PREP-Reading-Writing-Units-for-40-Popular-Mentor-Texts-1339979


I feel SOOO much better already knowing I have morning work, homework, and actual reading lessons set for the YEAR! Check out some other products people are wishing for or buying, by clicking on the links below!


Sooooo don't you need some extra money to spend during this sale??? We've got your back!


Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Two for Tuesday: Editing/Revising Around the Room!

Happy Tuesday Friends, 

It is your lucky day if you've been wishlisting my Edit Around the Room activities. I am putting my two new favorites on sale for TODAY only! 

First up is the NONFICTION football themed set. Need to get your boys (or girls, yes, I had female football players in my fourth grade class before) enthusiastic during language arts? They are going to LOVE the crazy facts they will be editing while looking for posters around the room. Everyone is guaranteed to be interested and learning in this engaging activity.

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Edit-Around-the-Room-Facts-About-Football-Nonfiction-Editing-CCSS-Aligned-1340021

Next is everyone's other favorite Around the Room activity, the NONFICTION Owl themed set! Not only is this set adorable, but it is also amazing to read all the owl facts around the room. 

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Edit-Around-the-Room-Facts-About-Owls-Nonfiction-Editing-CCSS-Aligned-1329971


My students love this activity and even my summer school students found success while getting out of their seat and moving around to edit. I allow them to use partners if needed and it is a great change of routine for the students. It does not matter what sentence they start with, just make sure they write them in the correct order on the recording sheet. When everyone is finished, we correct the worksheet as a class. 

I hope you will add these two sets into your fall plans. Not only will you love seeing your students engaged in editing activities, but the students will be motivated by the content to work to their best potential! 

Check out the other deals today at The Teaching Tribune's - 2 For Tuesday!


Monday, July 28, 2014

Monday Made it! First time trying spray paint!

I am SO excited I can actually link up with Tara this week for Monday Made-It, and I can finally focus on SCHOOL projects, now that my summer has started!

I don't know about you, but I am not the craftiest person. The thought of painting something is scary enough, but when you add paint in a can that sprays many feet away, I am pretty petrified and certain of a disaster. If you remember pictures from my classroom for the past few years, it has been hot pink and zebra. Although my room couldn't have been brighter, I was ready for a change. I decided to change up all of my bulletin board borders to teal and white chevron. I love teal and hot pink together, so that became my new theme. I am excited to finally be starting some projects for my classroom (now that summer school is finally over).

Up first was #1 of many Sterilite paper sorters.

I struggle with organization and this year I will have 75 students, I need to be on top of things. I came across some free labels that I feel in love with on TPT.

They inspired me to try to make a pretty paper sorter. I decided to label the three trays, Morning Work, Home Work, and Lined Paper. I will only have 24 students for ELA so this will work out perfectly. I have and am SO excited to use our new weekly morning work for the WHOLE year that is given out every week in a packet. I also have homework in packet form for the whole year. Every Monday, I plan on stocking this bin and leaving it up to the students to get their materials for the week. I think this will be a great responsibility for the students to take on and develop into a routine. The bottom drawer for lined paper will just be a helpful and neat place to keep paper for every day projects. So how did I do this...well that is the fun part of this post.

  • I picked up the spray paint at Walmart for $3 a can. I made sure it was special paint to apply onto plastic.  I bought hot pink and teal, but only have used the teal so far. 
  • I grabbed an old plastic table cloth and put it on the grass outside. I placed the Sterilite container on the table cloth, shook the spray paint a few times and started to spray. 
  • A freak rainstorm came out of no where and soaked me, my container full of wet paint, and my table cloth...so I ran in the house. 
  • Five minutes later I tried again...When I started to spray the container, some flying bugs jumped on the pretty container and got stuck! Every time I tried to brush them off, I ruined my paint job. 
  • A big gust of wind came and blew the table cloth right on top on the wet container and I actually had to PEAL it off... 
  • At this point, I gave up and brought it into the house to dry. Later on I tried a second coat and it covered everything (included the dead bugs) up. 
Because of that crazy experience I have learned some tips! 

  1. Check the weather before painting outside. 
  2. Paint in the sun where bugs won't bother you. 
  3. Use a plastic table cloth, piece of material, or old sheet to protect the ground, BUT use weights to hold down each side. 
  4. Shake the can (like the directions say) for a good two minutes and while spraying.
  5. Spray 6-8 inches away from the object and keep your hand moving. 
  6. Light and thin coats work best. 
 I think my first project of the summer was pretty successful. I was not scared away by the spray paint and will definitely be using it on future projects. I already started making over my teacher tool box because I found matching labels! I will post more about that...when I finish!

I hope this will help you and inspire you to brighten up your classroom with a little paint!


Wednesday, July 23, 2014

What I'm Wearing Wednesday: Baby Edition! ;)

We are on our last week of summer school and of course our classroom is the only one in the building that doesn't have air conditioning. That being said, I'm not wearing anything exciting and my hair is a frizzy mess! Robyn comes to visit everyday after she drops her oldest daughter off at summer camp and lets me steal Harper for a little bit.  So, instead of taking a picture of my sweaty, mismatched, summer school recycled clothes, here is what Harper is wearing on today's What I'm Wearing Wednesday!



Seriously, is she not the cutest little baby? Look at the chubby thighs!! Her outfit is from Carters, which in my opinion has the best baby clothes. They are soft, comfortable, and adorable! 

So until I actually wear a picture worthy outfit, this is all you get! :) 

If you aren't a fan of us on Facebook, be sure to "Like" our page! There is an awesome opportunity to win our MORNING WORK FOR A YEAR!



Have a wonderful day! :)

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Why I do What I do...homework edition & FREEBIE!

I am linking up with Christina today from Bunting, Books, and Bright Ideas for this informative linky. 

I thought it would be the perfect idea to tell you about our homework plan. To keep myself organized and plan ahead. We copy all of our homework ahead of time. Robyn is the super organized teacher and already has homework for the WHOLE year copied and ready to go. I just have a master copy printed out for each week and will copy a few weeks at a time. 

I found copying homework for the week and creating a packet teaches students responsibility. It helps them plan their time accordingly and puts the ownership on the students to complete the work, not the parents. Last year the best purchase I made on TPT was the Common Core Weekly Reading Homework from Forkin 4th!
http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Common-Core-Weekly-Reading-Homework-3rd-4th-5th-Grade-Complete-Set-40-Texts-772040
I love consistency and start giving this homework out to my students at the start of school. When it is time for Open House, I add images into my Power Point so I can explain to parents what the students are expected to complete weekly. Each student brings their homework in on Friday, we correct it together, and I collect it to look at parent comments on the fluency. Last year this routine worked out amazing. The kids loved the high interest readings, their fluency scores definitely improved, and the parents loved the idea of getting the homework ahead of time. I was so proud of hearing my students converse with one another saying, "I have football tonight and tomorrow. I am going to do most of my homework tonight so I will have time!" Now folks, I'm not even making that up! 

I am still on summer vacation for another month...in fact, I'm not even done with teaching summer school, but I am already thinking about next year. I am adding Social Studies and Science into my class instead of just ELA and although I am a little nervous, I'm hoping I'll survive with lots of support from my blogging friends!

Just in case you haven't heard, Robyn and I finally finished our Morning Work For a Year! We are so excited because like the homework, it allows us to prepare for the year, it is Common Core Aligned, and the students LOVE the activities! 

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/ELA-Morning-WorkBell-Work-BUNDLE-PACK-40-WEEKS-ENTIRE-YEAR-Monthly-Themed-1317892

Just in case you need some more persuading, check out the free WEEK of morning work I've uploaded as a sample! 

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/One-Week-of-3-5th-ELA-Morning-Work-Contractions-CCSS-Try-Before-You-Buy-1341011


Being so prepared is definitely taking my jitters away from the back to school craze that is just around the corner. Hopefully these products will help you too! 

Have a great week! :)

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Stop, Note, & Notice Book Suggestions!

Have you heard of this great book? Last year, my coach, Kara and I worked our way through the book and tested out many sign posts together. It was a wonderful way to get the students to look closer at text and think deeply. I enjoyed this book because I could understand what the authors were explaining and could actually picture the strategy situations happening in my own classroom. To improve the book, I would suggest a book list of picture books & chapter books that are perfect for the different strategies. I wasn't the only person who thought about this idea, in fact, when I talked to my coach, Kara, we both tried to brainstorm books to match the sign posts. Somewhere along the line, we were invited to add to a Google Doc of ideas. This was VERY helpful and I am excited to continue to use these strategies this year! To make me remember the books, I compiled a personal list of my favorite books that fit with the sign post strategies. I am going to print this out and put it in my lesson planning book. 


I own all of these books and house them in my classroom. Although some of these books are read over and over again throughout the grade levels and years, I find it perfectly acceptable to reuse them. It's great to reread a book, but for a different purpose. It allows the students to look deeper into the book and to think about it in a different way. It is also a great strategy for struggling readers because it was already preread and pretaught at a different time. This helps them get more out of the new lesson by not focusing so much on understanding the text, but about understanding and using the new strategy.

Since I've been using this book so much, I created my own set of sign posts for a classroom bulletin board. They work out great because the students are constantly referring to them and it is really awesome when they let you know they could use a strategy in their Just Right Chapter Book after silent reading time!

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Stop-Note-Notice-Reading-Strategies-for-Close-Reading-Chalkboard-theme-862279

I'd love to know what you think of this book and what books you would recommend for the sign posts. To access and add to the Google Doc, click on the image below.

https://docs.google.com/a/bethel.k12.ct.us/document/d/1G1i3ldBItHdsOJ0sZAlsZerAEkfKACDnderk9TsdQ4Q/edit


If you haven't read this book yet and teach Reading in grades 3+, I would highly suggest adding it to your summer reading list! What you learn is completely doable and very meaningful!

Have a great weekend!


Friday, July 11, 2014

Five for Friday! Morning Work for the Year & a SUPER Freebiel!

Hello Friends and Happy Friday! For those of you working summer school, I'm sure you are enjoying the day being Friday, I know I am. I am excited to link up with Doodle Bugs today to celebrate the end of another week!

This is how I feel...maybe is has to do with all the bleach I smell from the custodians cleaning the classroom next to us? :)

http://doodlebugsteaching.blogspot.com/


I couldn't be more excited to announce that our morning work for the WHOLE year is now complete! It is bundled to save a bunch of money and it is also sold separately for each month. Being prepared for the whole year is such an amazing feeling. This morning work is Common Core Aligned. It focuses weekly on different topics and skills and is a perfect packet to correct daily and send home on Friday to keep the parents informed.

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/ELA-Morning-WorkBell-Work-BUNDLE-PACK-40-WEEKS-ENTIRE-YEAR-Monthly-Themed-1317892

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/ELA-Morning-WorkBell-Work-BUNDLE-PACK-40-WEEKS-ENTIRE-YEAR-Monthly-Themed-1317892

I'm telling you, if you buy one item for next year, this is what you need. I know it helped my students tremendously this year and I can't wait to hear how much it has helped you and your students.

This is a BUNDLE PACK of morning work for your 3-5 ELA classroom for the ENTIRE YEAR!

This bundle pack includes monthly themed morning work targeting CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.4.1 Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking. Specifically targeting one week of the following concepts:

 *Getting to know you activities
 * Subject *Predicate
*Sentence fragments
*Run on sentences
*Synonyms
*Antonyms
*Homophones
*Prefixes
*Suffixes
*It’s vs. Its
*Prepositions
*Adjectives
*Verbs
*Adverbs
*Articles
*Using Guide Words in a dictionary
*Editing skills
*Different types of sentences
*Alphabetical order
*Nouns
*Plural nouns
*Possessive nouns
*Pronouns
*Similes
*Onomatopoeia
*Personification
*Idioms
*Contractions
*Proper nouns
 *Conjunctions
*Compound words
*A and An
*Past/Present/Future tense
*Commas
*Commas in a series
*Understanding S and ES
*Quotations

 Each week your students will get four days of practice using, understanding, and writing out the targeted skill before the Friday quiz. The worksheets are designed to explain the targeted skill and increase in difficulty as the week progresses. Friday’s worksheet is considered a quiz grade in my classroom. The worksheets are designed to be quick, consistent, and easy to correct. This is the perfect grammar activity for grades 3-5.

January
February
 March
April
May
 June
August: Back to School Special
September
October
November
December

We use this weekly packet as an activity to start our day with. We call it “Bell Work” because as the students enter the room in the morning, they work on their packet before reading Just Right Books around the room. After the bell rings, we correct the morning work for the day. This activity allows us to squeeze meaningful grammar exercises into the day and keep the students focused all while keeping the room quiet. At the end of the week, the students take the corrected packet home. This works great for parent communication and allows the parents to see what their child is working on in the classroom.


Some more excitement to share with you is that I've finally finished our tech cards for next year. I can't wait to print these cards in color, laminate them, and attach them to a key ring. I actually might print a few copies so everyone at my tech station will have access to their own set. I loved this so much, I actually made it a freebie! Go grab these awesome cards and let me know what you think. 

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Tech-Choices-Task-Cards-w-QR-Codes-1317720

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Tech-Choices-Task-Cards-w-QR-Codes-1317720

I just purchased this book and cannot wait to read it. I am going to focus next year on incorporating vocabulary into ELA, SS, & Science. I am also going to be linking up for a Word Nerds book club. Stay tuned for a book review!

We just made 900 followers at our TPT Store and couldn't more excited. When we hit 1000 we are going to have a HUGE surprise! If you aren't following yet, click on the picture below and press "Follow"! This will allow you to know when we post freebies and new products that you won't want to miss out. 

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Pinkadots-Elementary

 It's my husband's birthday weekend, which means we will be letting him decide on the weekend plans. I'm sure it will involve tag sales and a family trip to Cabelas. Have a wonderful weekend! :)