Sunday, November 25, 2012

Christmas in the Classroom (and freebie!)

Jingle Bells. Jingle Bells. Jingle All the Way! Oh what fun it is to ride on a one horse open sleigh!!!

I can barely believe it is already time for Christmas! But I am doing all that I can do to get myself into the Christmas Spirit! (I still have Halloween decorations up... so the first step is to take those down, lol.) But I am ready to decorate, turn up those Christmas songs, and have myself a cup of eggnog while cuddling with the boyfriend and watching a Christmas movie. I love the Holidays. I really do!

I love incorporating the Holidays into my classroom as well. Because lets all face it... kids are just as excited as we are (if not more excited) about Christmas! So in order to incorporate the Holidays into my classroom I've got a few things planned.

First off in unit this week we will be talking about Needs and Wants. We are going to be relating it to Christmas. I have this awesome activity that we are going to do using my Santa Sack and items from around my house. We will be sorting the items by needs and wants. Then we will be creating a wall display of items that are needs and wants. Here is the inspiration via Krazy for Kindergarten.
For the display the kids will be using magazines to cut out pictures of items that are needs and wants. And then we will be creating presents and writing about what we want for Christmas.

Over in math we will be discussing length. In order to get Christmas involved we will be measuring using Candy Canes. They will then choose an item that is shorter to write about. (Click the picture below to get the free worksheets.)

Then for the following 2 weeks we will be talking about Gingerbread Men, Reindeer, and discussing Christmas around the world, specifically comparing Christmas with Hanukkah using the Venn Diagram that you can find in my new Holiday Literacy Packet. Read all about this packet below and click on the picture to go on over and grab this packet.

This packet is jam packed with activities to help your students practice literacy skills while having a little holiday fun!

This 88 page packet includes
"All I Want for Christmas" brainstorming and writing page
Christmas vs. Hanukah venn diagram- with chart pieces included
Reindeer Tree Map with writing pages - chart pieces included
Label a Reindeer
and 11 Holiday Literacy Centers
1. Holiday Endings (RF.K.2d) - ending sounds
2. Spin the Letter (RF.K.2d) - beginning sounds
3. Snowman Sentences (RF.K.3c) - sight words
4. Rudolph’s Rhymes (RF.K.2a) - rhyming words
5. Santa’s Beginning Sounds (RF.K.2d) - beginning sounds
6. Words in a Wreath (RF.K.3c) - sight words
7. Snowflake Syllables (RF.K.2b) -syllables
8. The Alphabet Workshop (RF.K.1d) - abc order/missing letters
9. Elf’s Silly Words (RF.K.3a) - nonsense words
10. Alphabet Games – (RF.K.1d)
Memory Match, Alphabet Roll Say Keep, ABC Order
11. Holly BANG! (RF.K.3c) - sight words

This packet was designed for kindergarten but can be used as a review for first grade or a challenge packet for pre-K.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

I am Thankful (giveaway)

Hey everyone! I hope that you are having a wonderful week. Thanksgiving week is such a bittersweet time for me this year. I am thankful for having time with my family and thankful that I will get to turn another year older (Thanksgiving is my birthday!!)... but its bitter because my mom will still be in the hospital and it is the second year of having Thanksgiving without my dad. I love holidays but I miss him and seem to get depressed this time of year knowing that I won't get to see him wearing his green "Gift to the World" present shirt or get to taste his wonderful and famous pumpkin pie and banana pudding.

Thanksgiving is supposed to be a time of thanks. So I wanted to let you in on the list of things that I am very thankful for this year and every year.

1. Family. I truly believe family is the most important thing. They support you in (almost) every decision you make- even if it is not the best decision you have ever made. They love you unconditionally, which to me is the best type of love you can ever give anyone.
2. The boyfriend. After 4 years of dating, he is still my best friend, my confident, my constant. We have been through some very rough times and very good times. But through it all, even if we didn't see eye to eye on something, we have stood side by side. I told him the other day that I loved him more than I did the day before but not as much as I would tomorrow and even though that is probably the cheesiest line I could have every said, it was the truth.
3. My friends. I used to think that the more friends you had, the better your life was. But as I have gotten older, I have learned that isn't true. What is true though is that you should choose your friends carefully. I have friends that I don't see as much as I would like.... but when I do see them it is like we haven't spent a minute apart. That is what is important. I have friends that I truly believe would have my back in any situation. Friends that are family. Friends that are unique and special in their own ways. I am grateful for the friends that I have.
4. My job. I am given the opportunity every single day to work with some amazing little children. I am not only responsible for their learning, but I am responsible for making sure that they have fun and stay safe. There may be days when I wake up and don't want to go to work because I simply want to be lazy... but when it is all said and done, they make me happy. I told them today that I wanted them to know how thankful I am for each and everyone of them. And one of my little cuties told me "I am thankful for my teacher." It made me smile. Oh! and lets not forget my co-workers. I feel like I have grown closer to them this year.... and that is SUPER important to me. They may look at me like I am a little nuts sometimes... because I am. But they are an amazing team of educators and I am thankful to be a part of the group. The amazing part about this whole thing is I get paid to work with them, to teach them, and to guide them!
5. The boyfriend's job. If you know me then you know just how long the boyfriend looked for a job. It was a tortuous process. He looked for any type of job that he could get and nothing seemed to work out. But finally a few months ago he landed a job that is amazing! Although his hours are not ideal, he gets plenty of hours and his boss is very flexible! However, the best part of his job is that he is able to help support our family unit, taking some of the stress off of my shoulders.
6. Blogging. I may not be the best blogger or the most well-known blogger. I may go MIA from time to time. But the network of bloggers and teachers that I have been introduced to is beyond amazing. I am thankful that you share ideas freely, share products, and share yourself... your story. You will probably never know how important you are to me and how much I have learned from you.

So what are you thankful for?

Leave a comment below telling me what you are thankful for and enter my little giveaway! One of my lucky readers will receive 1 of my TPT products of their choosing. I will choose a winner of my mini giveaway on Thursday!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Whose Garden Is It and Freebie!

Whew! I am so tired! Thursdays are always a long day for me. I get to work early (like always) and then stay VERY late! However, I will admit if it was not for my faithful parent that comes in EVERY Thursday that we have school or don't have a field trip it would be a much longer day and I probably would never get everything I needed to accomplished!

But alas, she makes my copies for the next week and does other odds and ends for me. And then after school I stay late to get all my lesson plans done for the following week and get everything I need set up.

Another thing that has been a huge help the past several weeks is the wonderful literacy and math packets that Jennifer over at KinderTrips makes. If you don't know her go check out her blog!

If you use Scott Foresman then you definitely need to check out her math and literacy packets. They are totally worth the money! They give you everything you need to plan for reading whole group, literacy centers and math centers!

Next week we are doing Whose Garden Is It? Now despite my better judgement (I really don't understand why the basal has us doing a story about gardens when it is cold outside and everything green is dying.) I went ahead and got prepared for it!

Jennifer has some awesome activities for Whose Garden Is It? They are common core based and give you everything you need to score high when being observed. Go check out the literacy packet here and the math packet here!

To go along with the story I have also made 2 worksheets that I would like to share with you as a freebie. One is a page for your students to illustrate something that shows realism/fantasy in the story Whose Garden Is It? and another has the students illustrate 2 different types of gardens (flower gardens and vegetable gardens).

Click here to grab these worksheets and make sure you leave me some love!

P.S. Don't forget to sign up for the TN Blogger Holiday Meet-Up on Dec. 15th in Nashville! (Click the icon below to get the scoop!)

Sunday, November 4, 2012

TN Blogger Holiday Meet-Up!

So if you are a TN teacher and are part of the facebook page, you may have already heard the news. But incase you haven't we are having a TN Holiday Meet-Up in Nashville!
The plan is that we will meet up at the entrance of ICE at 10am (located in the Opryland Plaza area). They are featuring there DreamWorks Shrek the Halls made completely out of 2 MILLION pounds of ice! So its gonna be freezing! So make sure if you do get to come you wear WARM clothes and bring mittens. They will give you a blue parka to wear, but if your hands aren't wearing gloves your gonna be cold!

price- 24.95

After that we'll head on over to Opry Land Hotel to see the lights (which are ALWAYS spectacular).

price - FREE

From there we will head on over to the mall and eat lunch (location- up for suggestions!). During lunch we will be having an ornament exchange.

price - depends on what you get :)

So if you are interested in getting together with other TN teachers and coming down to Nashville for our Holiday Meet-Up e-mail me at When you e-mail me send me your first/last name and blog so that I can get some cute badges together!

Oh, and make sure to spread the word! I'm sure not all TN bloggers follow or even know about my little old blog and I would like to get as many of us teachers together as possible! The way I see it, the more the merrier!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Sub Help and Currently

I'm loving this weekend! It feels like it is lasting forever! By the time I went to bed last night, I already thought it was Sunday night and it was just Friday. I'm thinking it was the fact that I took a half day. It was my first day off this year. One of my students told me that they would miss me as I was leaving. It was precious! I was hoping everything would go well... and it may of... but 1) I got an e-mail last night from a parent saying that another parent had called her because their daughter's study buddy had come home with her. 2) When I went to school today to get some things done, my room was a disaster! I have never had a sub leave my room looking like it did today.

So here's what I need to know: what do you do to get ready for a sub? What is your best advice to make sure your students have a great day with their sub?

On another note.... it is November! There are MANY MANY reasons that I love this month. 1)My birthday (22nd). 2)Thanksgiving 3)Black Friday/Christmas shopping and last but not least.... 5)I get to participate in another "Currently"!!!

Head on over and link up with Farley!