Saturday, July 28, 2012

Double Posting in One Day...Oh My!!

          I saw this awesome blog hop about the book First Day Jitters and knew I had to link up!!  Ashley over at Fierce in Fourth is hosting!

          I get jittery every year even after teaching for so many years, but the top three reasons I am nervous this year are:
  1. Our school is getting a new principal...AND a new assistant principal!!  Our principal got promoted to a new position at central office and they did fruit basket turnovers with all the A.P.'s for some reason!  
  2. We will begin implementing the new common core this year.  I am excited, but nervous/jittery!
  3. I will have a new group of second graders this year.  I have had the same students for the past two years.  I looped up to second with them from first.  We had become such a close-knit group that we all were sobbing on the last day of school.  We definitely needed therapy that day!!
Till next time!

Pattern for Lettering Displays

          So...I've told you that my school is doing a Keys4Success theme, but that I'm mainly using owls and integrating them into the Keys theme.  Well, this little display is what I'm using outside my classroom in my main colors.  I'll add some owls in the mix later...

          But...what I've got for you tonight is the pattern for this display.  It can be used for ANY of your titled displays.  I plan to make a few more to use in my class to label different sections of my classroom - MATH, READING, etc...
          Another great thing about this post is that I went to DollarTree and low and behold...they had a great supply of scrapbook paper in their teacher section!  In my colors, no less!!!!
They had polka dots, squares, chevrons, little swirlies, diagonal stripes on one side and solid on the other.  Totally cute!  And, there are 10 sheets in a pack!  So you can make cute little displays to your heart's content!!  ;o) 

Click on the picture to grab your copy of the patterns!

I'm off to enjoy the rest of my day with my honey!  It's our 22nd wedding anniversary!  :)

Till next time...
Thursday, July 26, 2012

Three awards in two days = Excitement!!!

      I am so thankful and humbled to have been awarded the One Lovely Blog Award not once, but twice in the past two days. I am SO excited.
Once from Cheryl over at Spotted Around the School and the second from Donna over at Working 5 to 9 Math.  Definitely check them out! 

The rules of accepting the award is as follows:
  • Follow the blogger who gave you the award.  (DONE & DONE!)
  • Link back to the person who gave you the award.  (DONE & DONE!)
  • Pass this award to 15 new bloggers.  (DONE) 
And, here they are...
  1. Hope at Teaching with Hope.
  2. Heather at Can't Make This Stuff Up...Adventures in Teaching.
  3. Brittany at Closing the a Cute Outfit.
  4. Ashley at That's So Second Grade.
  5. Melissa at Teacher Treasure Hunter.
  6. Rebecca at First Grade Fascination.
  7. Meagan at Buzz Around in 2nd Grade.
  8. Jaime at Bright Concepts 4 Teachers.
  9. Mandy at Teaching is Bliss.
  10. Cassandra at Adventures in Room 5.
  11. Chasity at Second Grade is the Bees Knees.
  12. Erin at Sample's Superstars.
  13. Gwen at Learning with Mrs. Brinn.
  14. Lori at Live, Laugh, Love Second.
  15. Carol at Still Teaching After All These Years.
Whew!  That is hard - picking from all of the great blogs out there!

I also received this award from Kelly over at First Grade Fairytales:

I am so excited about this!!  Thanks again!

The rules for this award are:
  • Link back to the person who gave you the award.  (DONE)
  • Post the award to your blog.  (DONE)
  • Give this award to at least 5 bloggers who have less than 200 followers.  (DONE)
  • Post to their blog letting them know they have been offered this award.  (DONE)
  1. Traci at The Bender Bunch.
  2. Sarah at Co-Kindering.
  3. Liz at Polka-Dot Firsties
  4. Liz at Leaping Into First Grade.
  5. Rebby at Classroom Compulsion
Enjoy your AWARDS!  Visit these great blogs!!

Till next time...
Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Newbie Blogger Blog Hop first blog hop...I'm not quite sure if I'm doing it right, but here goes.

Since I am a brand-new blogger, I thought this would be a perfect first blog hop!  I'm linking up with Kelly from First Grade Fairytales.  She's my latest follower and left such kind words!  Thanks Kelly!

For this blog hop, this is what is being shared:
1.  what state you are in
2.  your current teaching position
3.  your teaching experience
4.  when you started blogging
So, here goes...
I live in Georgia and I currently teach second grade.  I began my teaching career in 2nd and stayed in 2nd for 11 years.  I then taught 1st for 10 years and finally got to move back to 2nd this past year after looping up with my first graders.  I hope to finish my career in 2nd!  I absolutely LOVE it!!  I am truly a newbie blogger!  I began blogging just this month (July '12) after finishing my masters degree in mathematics education.  

Till next time...

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Getting my Classroom Ready...Owl Lunch Choices

       I've been really busy trying to get my classroom ready!  Which means I've been trying to get more owl stuff integrated!

Of course, I've STILL got to finish unpacking and organizing my classroom since I moved  rooms!  The decorating has not happened that much yet - just little bits and pieces.  When I get home, I think of all the cute things I can add to make it cute and homey.  We spend so much time in our classrooms, we should make it cute and homey!  Right?!?!

Today, I made a ribbon orgainizer for my lunch choices.  It coordinates with my transportaion ribbon roganizer!  Simply print, laminate, attach ribbon on the back, and use clothes pins for students to choose their lunches.  I’ve included three different colors so that you can use all the same color, or mix and match the colors.  Your choice!  Hope you like it!!

Don't forget to follow my blog and TpT store!

Till next time...

How I Use Student Binders

       I received a sweet comment from a reader about how I use organizational binders with my students.  It's probably a good idea to share that info with you! ;)

       Each student has a 1 1/2 inch clear view binder.  That way we can put those CUTE binder covers in there.  Inside, they have an agenda (our system provides these), and two pocket folders (the plastic kind).  The agenda is where students write down their homework and I place their behavior information for the day.  The first pocket folder is behind the agenda.  That is their "homework" folder.  This is not a folder with prongs - just the pockets.  I put stickers on each of the pockets: Keep at Home and Bring back!  I like to use the plastic because they hold up so much better, but if they don't have the three ring holes already punched - Watch Out!  It is a PAIN to punch them! 

The left pocket is for things to be "keep at home."  These things might be announcements, daily work, etc.  You know, those jillion things that are sent home that you don't need a reply for.  One of the rules on the binder cover is that they are supposed to clean out their Keep at Home section each night.  They usually do a good job of this.  Occasionally, you have to remind them!  The right pocket is for things that they need to return to you...homework, permission forms, lunch money in an envelope, etc.  Pretty easy so far, right??

The second pocket folder can be used for anything that you want, whether it be sight words, homework sheets, whatever you feel is best for your class.  I have used it mainly for sight words since the homework is taken care of in our students' agendas.  Last year, I didn't even use the second folder because I looped up to 2nd with my students and my students had already mastered all the sight words that our district requires.

Also, if I need to I will put page protectors in their binders if there is something I want them to keep in there.  That could be maybe a poem we are working on, a readers theater script, etc...anything!  The first year, I use plastic pencil pouches in the binders, but I found them cumbersome.  They just put 

I could say this is the only way to do binders, but that is sooo not true, but it is what works for my students and me.  When it's time to pack up, I just tell them which pocket to put their item in.  It keeps them organized, their parents are able to find what they need, and I love that they are not searching in the bottom of their bookbags for that homework or lunch money! 

I hate that I don't have pictures, but if you have any questions - just ask!

Till next time...
Saturday, July 21, 2012

Organizational Binder Covers

Who all uses organizational binders in their classroom?  I love them!  My parents love them!  Not so sure if my students love them, but they sure do help them stay a bit more organized!

Can I get an "AMEN"??? 

Every year, I have had fellow teachers ask me about my binder covers.  I like to include my rules for their binder right on the cover so that I can have them refer back to them if needed.   Most of the time, my sweeties have taken very good care of them and haven't had any problems.  I found the rules that I use several years ago and I don't know where they came from.  If you know, please let me know so that I can give credit where credit is due!!

Today, I'm including two binder covers that I have used in the past.

Hope you like them!

Follow my blog for more cute and useful stuff to come! 

What do you think?

Till next time...
Thursday, July 19, 2012

Another FREEBIE!

A quick post today offering up a FREEBIE!

Up for grabs today is some Parent Homework.  Your students will love that you are giving their parents homework and your parents will love that you want to know more about their child!  It's quick, simple, and painless!!  This is great for your meet the teacher night.  Just give it to your parents and have them return it on the first day of school!

Just click on the graphic.

What do you think?? Please leave a comment letting me know.
Till next time!
Wednesday, July 18, 2012


Ok...I've gone a little bit owl-crazy.

I'm not really sure how it happened, but it's definitely happened!  They are just so darn cute!  I've also gone a little ribbon crazy!  I have lots of plans for these little spools of black, pink, and blue! 

One of the projects I have been wanting to do is create a cute transportation organizer.  I was inspired by this:

This is from the blog:

So cute!

I wanted it to be easy to use for me as well as my students and most especially any substitutes that I may have.  I plan to print out the following  transportation organizer, laminate them for durability and hot glue ribbon on the back so that it can hang.  A long tail of ribbon will hang from the bottom so that I can clip clothes pins on it.  The clothes pins will have student names on them and if it's a bus rider or van rider, also the bus number or van name. 

I created mine in three different colors because I'm not sure if I'm going to use the same color for each of the cards or if I'm going to mix it up.  In my TpT store, you can see the three different colors I have created.  I am using primarily pinks, blues, greens, and black in my classroom this year so that is what I used in this  
Just click on the graphic to take you to TpT. 

 (I learned how to do clickable links!  Whoo-hoo!!!)

What do you think about the product??

If you decide to download, please come back and leave a comment! Or tell me what you think of the blog so far...

Stop by soon...more cute stuff to come!!

Till next time!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

School Themes and a FREEBIE!

Does your school do a new theme each year?

Mine does.   You name it, we have probably done it!  Which means I have a lot of themed stuff.  I used to go all out, but as time has gone on, I have kind of scaled it back...This is good because this year, our theme is "Keys4Success."  (The 4 keys are  Respect, Responsibility, Safety, Persistence).  This is the hardest one we have ever had!  So...

For this year, I have decided to do an owl theme in my class this year.  I am soooo excited!!  I always try to match our school theme to my student binder covers, but my plan from now on is to use the owls and incorporate them into whatever theme our school adopts for the year. I've made a new OWL Book binder cover to share with you!    Hope you like it!

Click HERE to go to my TpT store. 

Till next time...

P.S. If you decide to download, please leave a comment telling me what you think.  Thanks!
Monday, July 16, 2012

On a personal note...

          I spent the weekend at the youngest Harris son's baseball tournament!  He's 13.  His team came in 2nd after 3 games of baseball (SIX hours!!!) on Sunday in the horrible heat! I am so proud of these boys.  They have really worked hard and the team that beat them for the championship displayed less than admirable sportsmanship.  Despite this, they held their ground and we (the parents) were so proud!  It really is nice to see the fine young men that they are becoming!  They even won rings for this tournament!  This was a first!
Pretty nice, huh!?

          I also wanted to tell you a little about myself.  You'd think I would have done that in my first post...Oh, well!!
          I am a veteran teacher.  I've been teaching for 22 years.  Wow!  In some ways, it feels like I just got started, but in others, it feels like forever.  I'm glad I still feel excited about teaching!  I love getting ready for the new year!  I taught 2nd grade for 10 years in another county.  I came home to teach in my home county and have been at this same school now for 12 years.  This first year at my current school, I taught 2nd which was awesome!  Then, my principal asked me to move to either 1st or 3rd.  I chose 1st.  I spent 10 years in 1st!  Then, this amazing class came along and I asked to loop up to 2nd with them.  This was last year.  This little group of sweeties was amazing!  All year long, I dreaded the last day!  And for good reason too!  We all needed a bit of therapy when the last bell rang!  It was heart-wrenching!  One of my little girls even cried herself to sleep I was told!!
          My awesome family includes my husband (my high school sweetheart), two boys (ages 13 and 19), and one sweet little Yorkie, Tiger.  My oldest son is in college, while my youngest will begin high school this upcoming year!  Where, of where has the time gone?!?!  We are constantly on the go and we love it!
Till next time...
Friday, July 13, 2012

My Classroom in progress and Shopping!!

My boys and I were supposed to go to a water park today, but the rain got in the way so what do we do but go to school and work.  They were not thrilled, but the promise of going twice next week brought them around.

I've included some pics of my classroom in progress, and believe me, it is definitely a work in progress.  I had to move classrooms this year.  I really didn't HAVE to move...just call me a glutton for punishment.  Really, it was just that I'd be closer to my team and I gained five additional feet in the length of my room.  That makes a HUGE difference as you all know!

This is toward the back of the room from the front door.
This is toward the front of the room a few feet from the front door.

This is toward the far side and the back of the room.  My students and I love our cozy reading center!

 As you can see, I have my work cut out for me!  Our system is on a 4 day work week during the summer so I won't make it to school tomorrow!

While my sweet hubby took my youngest son to baseball practice, my oldest son and I went shopping.  He is 19 and not too thrilled to be classroom shopping with mom, but he went.  He's really a sweetie! This my haul!

 I want to make the tubs in my math manipulatives area all uniform so off to DollarTree we went!  On the way, I decided to check out Dollar General.  I am so glad I did!  They had some really cute stuff!
From Dollar General:
The blue and pink tubs in the back, I plan to use with my Brain Bubbles.  I'll use these for enrichment and for students who finish early.  The pink will go with ELA and the blue will go with math.  These two colors match what I have going on in reading and math already.  The pink wire baskets will be used to hold papers for our writing.  I also got some tacky stuff to put my stuff on the wall and some spray adhesive.  I'm just not too excited about those so they didn't make it in the pics! 
From DollarTree:
I got the blue-topped shoe boxes to store my math manipulatives.  I also got those three sectioned storage trays with tops to store my base ten blocks for my groups.  This has been all over Pinterest.  I plan to put my base ten blocks in there and my groups can pull them out as needed.

Wow!  This is my longest post so far!  I hope you stuck it out with me!

Till next time...

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Chick-fil-a and My Classroom

Today I got to  read with the Chick-fil-a cow.  It's funny...I can be silly all day long with little kiddos, but I was really nervous in front of all the mommies and grandmommies!  It was fun though!  There were a lot of itty bitties there, which was different than my normal crowd of second graders.  The first story I read  was Harry the Dirty Dog, then we did the chicken dance and they got to dance through the little red door with Cow.  Trust me, if you have never been to a Chick-fil-a Dwarf House, going through the little red door is a big deal!  The next story is always a favorite with kiddos and adults alike - If You Give a Mouse a Cookie

I didn't get any pics of the actual storytime with my camera, but the marketing director did so I'll be sure to post those when she sends them to me.  I did, however, get to spend some time with one of my sweeties that I've had for the past two years.  (I looped up with her class.)  Can you say PRECIOUS?  That's what these two girls are!

My sweetie from last year and her little sis

I worked really hard in my classroom today.  It's so hard moving and unpacking.  You realize what you really use and what you don't!  I've got to seriously start the de-hoarding process!  But then again...I might need it! 

Till next time!
Monday, July 9, 2012

Great Ideas Gone Awry...and a FREEBIE

Most of you have seen a ton of great ideas on Pinterest, me included.  I had some great idea of painting one of my bookshelves and modge-podging some cute scrapbook paper on the inside.  Well...I really wanted to post some cute pics for you, but it did not turn out picture worthy.  In fact, I took all the paper off because it looked SOOO horrendous!

Tomorrow, I plan to get into my classroom to start the decorating process. That is, right after I have storytime with the Chick-fil-a cow at our local Chick-fil-a.  That should be an experience!!  I'll take get someone to take some pictures of that for me!  I'll also get some pics of my classroom to show the progression.

Now, for the freebie!  I've been working for a little bit today getting my back to school forms ready for the new year!  I jazzed them up just a little for this year.  I hope you like them!

Here's the link to download from my teacherspayteachers site:

I haven't learned how to embed the link into the pic, but that'll come!

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

First things first...

This is the first post to my first blog ever...

I'm a little nervous about starting this blog, but I hope it will be a place that you can come to find great information.  I have been teaching for 20+ years and will be graduating from the University of Georgia in August with my Masters of Education in Mathematics Education.  I've always thought of myself as a reading person.  I'm sure some of you can relate, right?

But, two years ago, I started this journey in gaining this masters degree in math ed because 1. I wanted the pay increase, and 2. my system was paying for the endorsement part of the degree so why not go ahead and get it started since they were paying for almost half...Anyway, here it is two years later, I am completely DONE!!!  And boy does it feel good!

Along the way though, I learned to LOVE math so I'll {(HoPeFuLlY)} be giving some reading/language arts information, but also some great math information too.

Hope you'll stick around!!
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