Monday, January 30, 2012

Dang-it! I got caught!

Even though I ran as fast as my little legs would let me, I got tagged! Not by one. Not by two. But THREE quick-on-their-clicks ladies! :) {Thank you}
Since three pretty ladies nabbed me, I thought I better get to playing along before I get whacked again (how many times do you have to remind your little ones that they can NOT play tag at school?!...MY WORD)!

Ok.  The rules:

1)           You must post the rules. {check}
2)          Post 12 fun facts about yourself on the blog post.
3)          Answer the questions the tagger set for you in their post, and then create 12 new questions for the people you tagged.
4)          Tag 12 people and link them on your post.
5)           Let them know you've tagged them! 
 Prepare yourself for a read that has everything to do with ME {for this, I apologize} we go:
1. I LOVE speaking in front of people {my goal is to be an educational presenter one day...hopefully soon!}
2. I married the guy I started dating at the ripe age of 18.
3. My husband and I met through our parents {they went to high school and college together} after they got back in touch at their 25th high school reunion.  We then began IM-ing (remember when that was the IT thing to do). He lived in Boston. I lived in Gainesville, FL. He flew me up to meet him in person (which was okay because our parents were good friends) on Oct. 11, 2002.  The rest is history! :)
4. I am an animal activist (not the extreme kind though). I just love furry creatures...not slithery or slimy
5. Doc Hollywood was filmed in my hometown.
6. I've only seen snow twice. Not the fluffy white kind either. The slushy, wet, dark gray kind...not fun.
7. My hometown is where the recent 1-75 crashers occured this weekend. (My parents literally live 5 minutes from the wreckage).
8. I love mexican food.
9. I'm obsessed with the Hunger Games series.
10. I teach next to my best friend.
11. My husband drives an 86' ford F-150. It's amazing...except for when I have to drive it! ha!
12. Me and my coworkers refer to outfits as "so pinterest!" haha! If it looks like we pinned it on pinterest, it's 'so pinterest!" :)
okay. Now for my questions from my first tagger, my sweet friend from First Grade Delight
1. Do you have to sign in and out when you arrive and leave school? (including if you leave for lunch?) Yea, but it's not really regulated. So I could sign in for the entire week on Friday! :)
2. What is your favorite snack? banana with Nutella...obsessed 
3. What time do you usually get to work? By 7:15. This is my 'quiet time' to get things done. Teachers don't have to report until 7:45. 
4. What is your dream vacation? Australia 
5. Who is your favorite actor/actress? Jennifer Aniston & Ryan Ryenolds  
6. Have you ever had a bad habit that you have now overcome? I eat a lot of cookies...not going to get rid of that habit though. I have a sweet tooth that needs sweets! :) 
7. Is there a smell that you can’t tolerate? The kiddos bad breath...YUCK! 
8. Do you have a favorite sports team? Florida State Seminoles...that gives away where I live! :) I BLEED garnet and gold! 
9. What’s your favorite type of music? everything. 
10.What annoys you more than anything? going through financial problems when we both work so dang hard 
11. What is your favorite children’s book? that's WAY too hard. My two favorite growing up were Jessica and Imogene's Antlers 
12. How long have you been teaching? four years
Now for my questions from Sandra at Literacy Minute:
1.  What is your favorite snack? Banana's with Nutella
2.  Where do you shop for clothes? OMG....Forever 21, Gap, J.Crew
3.  What is your favorite TV show? HA!...all reality tv
4.  Do you have a pet? 2 pups ever
5.  Who is your favorite children's author? Kevin Henkes
6. What is your favorite lesson to teach? I really enjoyed my inferencing and contraction units this year thanks to Cara and Abby!
7.  What travel spot do you like the most? the beach
8.  What is your guilty pleasure? all things sweet
9.  What do you like to do with your best friend? have a glass of wine and gossip (I know..both bad)
10.  What is your favorite magazine? Women's Health
11.  Who inspires you to be a better person? my mother
12.  What would you buy with an extra $100.00? I'd pay bills!

And, finally my questions from Sheri at 1st Grade Rocks:
Were you excited to be tagged? OF COURSE
What are you doing right now while trying to write this post???  Catching up on some reality tv and avoiding writing progress reports
What subject do you feel like you ROCK at teaching and why??? reading
What grades have you taught? K and 1
Who is the person that you go to for help when you need support at school? my mom (for venting) other bloggers for ideas
Do you have a lot of after school meetings? more than I would like
What do you do for reading interventions? differentiate!
What is your favorite blog post? hmm...well, which one do you like?!
Do you like comments on your blog posts? most certainly!
Are you a coffee person? can't function without it
What is your favorite show to watch on television? all reality tv shows
What great book have your read lately? Hunger Games

My 12 Questions:
1. Are you stuck in a 'high-stakes' year this year?
2. How long have you been teaching?
3. Did you initially graduate with a degree in education?
4. Have you always wanted to be a teacher?
5. What is the best conference you've been to?
6. Favorite 'adult' book you've read?
7. You vice?
8. Have any kiddos of your own?
9. Favorite vacation spot?
10. Favorite movie?
11. If you weren't a teacher, what would you do?
12. Top 3 bloggers?

And 12 I've caught up to and 'tagged':

First Grade Fanatics

 that's not 12 but I'm outta time.  If you're still here reading this God Bless You!!! :)

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Numberline Games

This post was inspired by the wonderful Kim Adsit! One of the MANY things that I snagged from the conference I attended last week was differentiating math workstations.  I love simple and easy games that kids can play with little instruction.  Numberlines are one those workstations!
This game can be played SO many different ways.  Students can play to find even and odd numbers, add, subtract single or double digit numbers, multiply, divide!  You can even differentiate more by having your more 'advanced' students record their number sentences.  To learn how these games are played click HERE to be directed to Kim and Megan's blog Kingergals.  They give a great description of the basics to this game and direct you to the many units where you can purchase more themed numberlines that Kim has created.  
I spent today not only fighting a cold {uuggghhhh} but creating a numberline as well to use during my Valentine's Unit! All you need to do is print the copies on cardstock {for durability}, adhere to some construction paper {to create the numberline} and let the playing begin!  After creating the document, I realized I did not place a circle card to place in the middle for the starting point.  :(  I hate when that happens!
Start Circles

Again, sorry you have to make two downloads! GGGRRR!!! I'll just blame it on the meds I'm taking for this awful cold. Now off to rest and read some more of Hunger Games.  Have you read that yet?!
It has taken over my life. It's so hard to put that book down! AHHHH-MAZING!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I saw a pig fly!

Ok.  Not really.  BUT I did get to meet one of my very own bloggy celebrities! 

This amazing woman...

KIM ADSIT! I mean this is one extraordinary woman.  
{side note...excuse the horrible pixels and pale white was taken on my phone and...well, my skin has not seen sun in what feels like forever} {I also wish I had some extra time to jazz up the photo with a backdrop or something but since I don't, I think my over-plastered smile does the trick}

ok.  So I attended Kim's "DI for the little guy" conference today.  I'm pretty sure, aside from Kim, I traveled the furthest to be there.  3 1/2 hours one way for a one day conference.  Would I do it again? In a HEARTBEAT!  

I'm not sure if you remember {hopefully not} but I recently blogged about how stressed out, etc.. I was with this school year.  I had been bogged down by the stress and weight of assessments that I had lost sight of what I loved most about teaching...THE KIDS!  Today, that stress and weight was lifted.  Kim TOTALLY rejuvenated me to get my butt in gear and have some fun with these kiddos!  I left feeling excited, ready, and VALIDATED! Yes, VALIDATED!!!  I had so many TONS of 'aha' moments throughout this conference.  So many, "OMG! I'm already doing that!" and "WOW! She really gets it!" Maybe that's because she's been teaching (now retired) for 30+ years and KNOWS HER STUFF!

After getting some much needed ZZZZ's I'm going to get right to work on my LONG list of 'to-do's' that I have grabbed from Kim.  This weekend I'm going to be the "loser" (as Kim refers to herself) and stay home and get busy making these new creations.  Can't wait to post pictures and catch you up to speed on what I've learned from this awesome educator. I just LOVE learning! :)

If you're looking for an amazing conference be sure to check her out.  In the meantime you can find her on her blog she shares with her daughter, Megan at Kindergals or on her website.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Door hangers

So this post has nothing to do with current academic themes but thought I would share some goods! Since I FINALLY have a program that is PDF friendly I can finally share some goodies I created in the past.  

This is super simple.  I wanted cute door hangers to place on the door when we were out of the classroom.  I simply printed these on cardstock and laminated with the 'thick' laminate.  I also did not cut on the lines to make it a slide on/off hanger.  I wanted the door hanger to be placed on the handle without having the ability to slide off {the top part of the hanger}.  My classroom door faces outside so when the wind blows it would make the door hanger fly off!  To weigh the hanger down, for precautionary measures, my kiddos place two clothespins on the bottom of the hanger before they place it on the door.
Simple. Cute. Useful.
Here's your freebie:
Door Hangers

Loving all the love and support from you wonderful bloggers! Thanks for the wonderful comments ladies.  Keep the love coming! :)

Thursday, January 19, 2012

so many emotions

Even though it was a "short" one it has been one of "those" weeks! My goodness!! After having to call a parent about their child's harsh words said on the playground {worst phone calls to make} I head to our faculty meeting that lasted an hour and a half.  Of course, not much wonderful news was brought to us, instead sad news about the state of sexual activity going on amongst the 4th and 5th graders.  Yes, you read that right! It's just shocking.  I mean, jaw dropped to the floor, speechless kind of shocking! Maybe I'm naive to think that 9-11 year olds wouldn't know {to that extent} about sexual activity, but I was literally in shock! Very sneaky fellas.  Our school is a VERY old, historic school with lots of "hiding" places.  Apparently the students have found those places.  Not a very fun way to spend the end of a long and stressful day.

Next.... is anyone else feeling like there's just SO much to do?!  Every year during the weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas break I always feel so overwhelmed, like I have so much that I want to squeeeeeze in, that I stress myself out trying to get all the fun in.  Then I get to the end of January, beginning week of February and am reminded that THIS is the time for ALL the 'cramming' to begin.  I mean our 100th Day is on the 31st, Groundhog Day the 2nd {absolutely favorite theme...not sure why}, wrapping up our Penguins and Snowmen units, beginning our inventors unit after that, and then, of course, don't forget Valentine's Day! I love each and every one of these themes! I just wish there was more time in the day to get it all that I want to get in! I mean I have 'pinned' so many fabulous ideas that I just want to DO THEM ALL! :)

And Finally, can we talk about my reality show obsessions?!  I mean between Real Housewives, The Bachelor, Teen Mom 2, and Jersey Shore there's just so much going on and my DVR is filling up quick! My sweet hubbers asked me the other day why I watch all this "filth" {not my choice word..hehe} I think it's just my way of not dealing with the stress of my own life sometimes.  Not that I don't deal with them, but sometimes I just like to not have to think! Does that make sense?  Do you feel that way sometimes?  Well, my new favorite thing to do is see what Kristin over at A Teeny Tiny Teacher has to say about these shows (we watch the same line up) every Wednesday.  9 times out of 10 she's RIGHT on target! :) 

I am now going to head on to the kitchen, pour myself a small glass of red, and grade some papers while catching up on Suburgatory and Modern Family! :)

Happy ALMOST Friday!!!!  So ready for my sun shiny weekend!
Will have an update with fun stuff to share this weekend....promise.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Currently in January

I'm excited to participate in my first *currently* linky party held by none other than Farley from Oh' Boy 4th Grade! 

Here it is:
I would like to clarify that I chose 'beach' for my OLW because I live in sunny Florida and more days than not it's the kind of weather perfect for the beach! Like today...MAN I would have L-O-V-E-D to have my feet in the sand at the beach...not in the playground! :)

Join in on the linky party fun at

Sunday, January 8, 2012


This week my little firsties will be learning all about MLK! Last year I downloaded a free MLK Mini Unit from April at Chalk Talk.  Her mini unit is 'chalk filled' (no pun intended..hehe) of super cute ideas to implement in ALL grades! 

Go HERE to check out this wonderful ideas!

In her mini unit is an adorable poem about how we can be like Martin Luther King. Last year I used the poem she had already created and had my students highlight certain high frequency words.  This year I made my own little "twist" to the poem.  I started doing poetry journals like Abby from the Inspired Apple does.  You can check out how she does poetry journals HERE.  With that said, my kids write certain high frequency words to complete poems.  Below is your 'I Can Be Like Martin poem' FREEBIE! :)  The spaces are for the kiddos to write either "We can be" or "We can" on.  I would download April's mini-unit to go along with this additional freebie!

Be Like Martin Poem
To see some super cute MLK activities that I implemented in my classroom last year and will be creating again this year find the MLK link on my sidebar!  :)

Hope you all had a wonderfully relaxing weekend.  It was 78 degrees here in sunny Florida! Perfect sunbathing weather! 

On a side note: thank you all so much for the sweet comments and words of encouragement! I love getting to create documents now.  I finally feel like I can "give back" after "stealing" SO many amazing ideas from other bloggers!

Happy Sunday!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


Can you believe it?!  Another FREEBIE!  I'm just on a roll now!  They are no Cara Carroll, Babbling Abby, Deanna Jump, or Kim Adsit, but they'll do! :)

This little freebie is a quick center that I "whipped" {took 2 hours later..haha} up to put in our Word Study area next week.  We've been learning about fact and opinion and since we'll be learning about penguins, why not a simple little center?! :)

Hope this works for you too!

Penguin Fact Opinion

There's nothing more that I love than receiving comments/feedback! :)
Just sayin'!!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Sentence Scrambler FREEBIE!

I can't believe I actually did it!  I created a FREEBIE! :)  
Accomplishment one of the new year... check! Hehe, the simple joys in life.

On my final day of the holiday break I decided to create a winter facts sentence scrambler! My firsties absolutely LOVE doing these together during Word Study {Daily Five}.  It helps with sentence structure, reading, writing, penmanship, etc... Since I will be doing a mesh of multiple "themes" in these first few weeks back I thought it would be fun to throw this little center in to kind of 'tie' it all together!

 Click HERE! To snag the freebie!!
I'm butting heads with Scribd and Google Docs so I attempted for the bazillionth time below to have a preview and link but you can just click the link above to check it out too!  Let me know what you think! I'm so excited.... should I do more? :)   

Winter Sentence Scramble

Sunday, January 1, 2012 I come!!!

To all family, friends, and amazing fellow bloggers:

2011 has had extreme ups and downs for my sweet little family, but by the grace of God our lives are changing and good things are coming our way!  I have many resolutions that I am holding close to my heart.  

I will be starting this new year back to school with a good attitude.  With the horrific shift in education, I have had a sour attitude in the classroom and around colleagues and that's just NOT okay!  I'm excited to continue implementing all the wonderful things I've learned and 'mastered' {or at least I think I've mastered}.  Things like The Daily Five, Whole Brain Teaching, and Math Workstations!  Seriously, if you have not looked into WBT you MUST!  It is such an amazing way to keep students fully engaged throughout the day and REALLY helps your more challenging students stay on task and gives them little time to make a 'poor choice.'  Who wouldn't want that in the classroom!

While my husband is away doing what he loves to do {ride dirt bikes} I'm going to get to cleaning this house and prepare for our New Years Day cookout and bonfire with our dearest friends!  Wish you could all join me!! :)
Happy New Year from my family to yours!