Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Teachers Are Heroes TPT Sale

Who is your hero? Well....teachers of course. It's almost like we have super powers just like those in the cartoons! If only I could say "zap" and all the papers get graded! Ha! I can think of many teachers who have made such a difference in my life as well as with my own kids. I want to honor one by giving her a shout out. She just started her TpT store so I'd  love for you all to visit and show her some love. Her name is Kathleen and she is from Teaching It Up. Two of my children had her for kindergarten and now my 3rd child will have her for 1st grade. We love her.  She's amazing with many years of experience in K/1 and also in loving her students! She's been busy uploading some great Reader's Theatre....Check them out. She has many for the important people in history that our students have to learn about.


I'd love to also honor other teachers who've taught my own kiddos.... Mrs. Massey, Mrs. Musial, Mrs. Brandon, Mrs. Arnold, and Mrs. Shumpert! They are all amazing and I'm so happy my kids had the honor of being their students. :)

(Thanks to Mrs. Jones's Kindergarten for the sale button!)

Are you ready to stock up on some great products for the "Teaches Are Heroes" sale on TpT? Get you carts ready... I am marking my entire 20% off and when you use the code HEROES at check out you'll get 28% off. Just don't be like me and totally forget to put in the code to save more! I've done that so many times. 

I'm already filling my cart full.... I'm a little bit of a clip art addict! I'm always on the look out for great clipart to create more products.  I don't want to advertise too much but below you can check out some of my best sellers....Super Solvers. It's great weekly problem solving with single and multi-step problems  all throughout. It also includes a page each weak for students to apply what they've learned. Enjoy! They can be purchased separately or save with the bundle. :)


Monday, February 09, 2015

Kindergarten Technology Will Save Your Life!

I'm not sure if I actually mentioned to any of you that I am teaching 1/2 time EIP and 1/2 Gifted Education this year. Part of my EIP time is with a small group of kindergartners for reading and math. Now...up until this year my experience with this age group is ZERO! I've been an intermediate teacher for 16 years. I can now honestly say that ALL Kindergarten teachers deserve a special award for all that you do. WOW....is all I can say! I commend all of you. :)

A special thanks to Deanna Jump for creating some amazing Guided Readers that I've faithfully been using with my small group. Her February pack is up now too. I would definitely check it out!
I've seen such an improvement in not only reading but their writing as well! You can check it by clicking the link above.

I'd also love to give Mary Amos of Sharing Kindergarten a shout out for creating the Computer Center Sheets that I integrate each day! Check them out below. Without my blogging buddies, I don't know how would survive!!! Thank you!

Between YouTube, Deanna Jump, and Mary Amos....they are creating a kinder teacher out of me yet!

To help me with this age group, I've turned to technology. Any way I can integrate it into my day, I do! I only have 45 minutes with these kiddos so I have to provide variety. I wanted to share the technology components I use in my classroom each day.

I usually start off with a YouTube video practicing sight words. I am a huge believer that if they can say it, see it, and move to it that they will learn it! I've already seen great results. Check out a few of the ones I use below.

The app below is one of  their favorite apps!!! It's also FREE!

For math, I do a similar opener with a YouTube video. At the beginning of the year, I started off with rote counting to 20 because they had difficulty even getting to that number. Now we have moved on to counting by ones to 100 and counting by 10's. We've also had fun listening and interacting with the teen numbers. I don't know what I'd do without Harry Kindergarten!  I'll post a few of those below too for you to see.

I hope you find some of these useful. I know I couldn't survive without them! In a later post, I am going to be sharing some apps I used on the iPads too. The best part is that I test them all out with my own 5 year old. So....they are kid approved! Make sure to take a peek at one of my newest freebies for "Tens & More Ones". I'd love for you to try it out. :) Click the picture below  or the link to grab it up.

Come back for more technology integration ideas! :)

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Super Summarization Techniques & Student Engagement Strategies

Summarizing Anyone?

Is it just me or is summarizing one of the most difficult skills to teach students? I'm going to imagine that you all are nodding your heads! Even as an adult, I find it hard at times to summarize information. If you are out of ideas and need something new to try out, take a peek at the links below. I've tried some of them before, but I definitely see some that I'd love to try out. How about you?

10 Fun Ways To Effectively Summarize

Let's Get Engaged!

No.... we aren't getting married silly! Besides summarizing, I thought I'd also throw in a resource for "Best Practice Instructional Strategies". These are awesome for getting your students more engaged. Have you ever stopped and just looked around at your students during a lesson. There are times I swear I could see a student drooling because they were so bored. To be honest.... I'm sure there are times my lessons were very boring. Yes.... I said it! Teachers can be boring at times. It's hard to spice up some lessons or standards. My gifted endorsement class has opened my eyes again to some awesome ways to get students engaged. I'm back baby!

Best Practice Instructional Strategies: Get Students Engaged!

Independent Learning

Finally, I think I mentioned in a previous blog post about a vocabulary contract I was making. Grab it here.... I am taking a chance and offering it in editable format so you can tweak it. :) Enjoy.... This one was created for a 5th grade class that has gifted students but can be done with any student that you feel is ready for independent learning.  If you have trouble with the link, please let me know. Enjoy. You can also view each page below. **Remember...you can grab this and edit it for your needs. I know....the fonts are fun, but I had to choose a font that most of you would already have so that it didn't come out funky on your computer. Sorry to all of the font lovers out there.

Free Vocabulary Contract For Independent Learning

Vocabulary Frame Activity is from
Scroll down to activity 11.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Super Vocabulary Strategies

Am I the only one that gets bored doing the same old thing with vocabulary? I'm certain that I'm not the only one that has students that struggle learning vocabulary. Many students are given vocabulary and asked to study their definitions for a quiz that they'll be given later. I don't know about you, but when my own children are asked to do this they groan! One of my children learns vocabulary fairly easily, but my son struggles with simply reading a definition over and over trying to memorize. It definitely doesn't help him make connections. So, what does a teacher mom do? I go out and try to find something that is visual and not so boring!

Here are a few ideas that you may like and also use for students in your class room.

I found a great visual vocabulary sight called http://flashcardstash.com/. You not only put in your vocabulary word and definition. You also go to a database of pictures to put with it. So....you basically get a visual flashcard stack. You can then study traditionally or through matching with and without pictures. This would be great to create as a teacher and use whole group to introduce or review vocabulary.

You probably already know about www.quizlet.com . It is also a favorite of mine for learning vocabulary as well as any information for a test. It's similar to Flashcardstash. You can get the free app too. My son has this one on his iPhone and creates many flashcards for vocabulary and tests. He shares them with his friends by making them public. If you are a teacher you could create the flashcards for them and share them. They could then go home, search for them, and have access. It gives different options for practice too. My son loves the matching game the most and tries to beat his time each time he practices.

In my gifted endorsement, a teacher friend showed how she used www.animoto.com in her Language Arts class. It immediately gave me the idea to use it for vocabulary. Students can create awesome slideshows with images, music, and text to show their understanding of their vocabulary. You can create an educator's account for free. This gives you the option to have up to 50 student accounts under your name. I did this and it was very easy. If you don't already know how to create student accounts under a main Google click here http://help.animoto.com/entries/104077-How-do-I-set-up-accounts-for-my-students.

Here are some other ways to practice vocabulary on a deeper level.

*Have your students interview one of their words. They can ask thoughtful questions that would require and answer that explains it's meaning.

*Have students use their word as a piece of artwork for a scene. The catch is that their word must be transformed as a part of the scene, and others must be able to infer the meaning through the visual clues in the scene.

*Have students write a story but placing a blank where their vocabulary word would be. Their classmates must use the context clues in the story to figure out the word.

*Use http://www.conversationpieceslearning.org/vocabulary.html Word Wonder's Vocabulary Program. Students learn vocabulary at their own pace, challenging themselves. There's a competitive twist as they work through lists up through 6th grade. They take quizzes, earn, points, and get their name on the Vocabulary Hall of Fame on the website.

More ideas to come as I am creating an independent vocabulary learning contract for students for my gifted endorsement. I'll be posting it soon for you to grab. :)

I hope you've gotten a few ideas you can use.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Fall Fever & Fall Freebies

Well, I obviously haven't posted in a while. School has been a little crazy lately since I'm basically working with students from Kindergarten, Fourth, & Fifth grades. Enough about that though..... I'm am already feeling some cool, crisp mornings and it makes me itch for fall weather!  I couldn't resist all the fall clip art and just had to create a few little products for my friends at work. They are who give me most of my inspiration! So....below you'll see some of my latest products with a few FREEBIES at the bottom that I created last fall that you may like too. :)

For my 5th Grade Friends....


For All My Friends..... (probably more for 2nd -5th)


FREEBIE.....Who doesn't love problem solving right?


One more FREEBIE.....but for my 3rd & 4th Grade Friends

Enjoy taking a peek into my newest fall favorites and grabbing the Freebies along the way. :)  I'm on a roll creating for problem solving so if you teach 2nd, you may want to check out my newest 2nd grade differentiated problem solving packs for addition & subtraction while you are there.

Happy Fall Y'all!
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