Saturday, March 26, 2011

Skip Counting Cheerleaders

Here’s a quick review math station I’m using this week. Our 3-8th graders are testing all next week. You know what that means…no movement until testing is done for the day. I’m planning a week of fun, hands -on activities to keep the stir crazies away!




Count By Fives Cheerleader

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Survivor: Teacher Edition

Issue One:

Don’t you just love when John McLaughlin says that on PBS’s McLaughlin Group.

A dear retired teacher friend of mine just sent me this e-mail. All I can say is Amen and Amen! “Bye-Bye” (Another McLaughlin saying)


Next Season on Survivor:

Have you heard about the next planned "Survivor" show?

Mayor Bloomberg (NYC), Kathy Black (NYC Schools' Chancellor), Governor Walker ( Wis ) and Governor Christie (NJ) will be dropped in an elementary school classroom for 1 school year.  Each of them will be provided with a copy of his/her school district's curriculum, and a class of 20-25 students in a self-contained classroom with ancient furniture and few supplies.

Each class will have a minimum of five learning-disabled children, three with A.D.H.D., one gifted child, and two who speak limited English. Three students will be labeled with severe behavior problems.

Each of them must complete lesson plans at least 10 days in advance, with annotations for curriculum objectives and modify, organize, or create their materials accordingly. They will be required to teach students, handle misconduct, implement technology, document attendance, write referrals, correct homework, make bulletin boards, compute grades, complete report cards, document benchmarks, communicate with parents, and arrange parent conferences. They must also stand in their doorway between class changes to monitor the hallways.

In addition, they will complete fire drills, tornado drills, and [Code Red] drills for shooting attacks each month.

They must attend workshops, faculty meetings, and attend curriculum development meetings. This incudes mandatory summer workshops and training for textbooks and the current ways one should teach Reading and Math. They must also tutor students who are behind and strive to get their 2 non-English speaking children proficient enough to take the SOLS tests.  If they are sick or having a bad day they must not let it show.

Each day they must incorporate reading, writing, math, science, and social studies into the program. They must maintain discipline and provide an educationally stimulating environment to motivate students at all times.  If all students do not wish to cooperate, work, or learn, the teacher will be held responsible.

These people will only have access to the public golf course on the weekends, but with their new salary, they will not be able to afford it.  There will be no access to vendors who want to take them out to lunch, and lunch will be limited to thirty minutes, which is not counted as part of their work day.  They will be permitted to use a student restroom, as long as another survival candidate can supervise their kids.

If the copier is operable, they may make copies of necessary materials before, or after school, however, they cannot surpass their monthly limit of copies.  They must also continually advance their education, at their expense, and on their own time.

The winner of this Season of Survivor will be allowed to return to their job, but will have to plan for more students and less funding than currently allotted.

Pass this to your friends who think teaching is easy, and to the ones that know it is hard.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Just So Scrappy Winners

Here are winners of my Just So Scrappy giveaway! Congrats ladies! You have until Monday 12 midnight to contact me. Mrs. Saoud let me know which kit you’ve decided on.


Winners   Winners


Thursday, March 17, 2011


A second-grader writes in his journal.

Students looking upwards.     Mr. Sinnett sitting and talking with his students.

Have you ever heard of Learner.Org? About six years ago I discovered this wonderful website full of excellent videos… all free, all you have to do is register and set up a user name and password in order to watch . I especially love the following:

Teaching Reading: K-2 Workshop

Teaching Reading K-2: A Library of Classroom Practices

Teaching Math: A Video Library K-4

Mathematics: What’s the Big Idea

The following are for 3-5 grades…but when I watch them I can find ideas to tweak for my first graders.

Engaging with Literature: A Video Library 3-5

Engaging with Literature: A Workshop for Teachers 3-5

Inside Writing Communities 3-5

Teaching Reading 3-5 Workshop

If you get the chance you should definitely check them out. It’s like having your own professional library at your fingertips.

During the summer I always block out a week or two to re-watch and get a fresh perspective for a new year. Let me know what you think.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Just So Scrappy Giveaway

I mentioned yesterday how much I LOVE Just So Scrappy. Well I contacted Katie, the owner, and asked about letting me host a giveaway….she said yes! I’m so excited. She made a coupon for me to give to one lucky winner. The coupon is for five dollars off anything in her store, and it’s good for a year.

She also said she’d be willing to let me make a few things to give away to my followers…so I thought why not include that in the contest. Then I thought I have such great followers so why not buy an extra kit…then give that away too! Don’t ya love me!

Here are the prizes:

1st Winner: Just So Scrappy Coupon

2nd Winner: A Just So Scrappy Kit

3rd Winner: The fabulous Picnic Bingo Game pictured below. I stayed up way past midnight making this.


Here’s what you have to do:

1. Follow my blog and post about it.

2. Follow Just So Scrappy. Click here to follow. Then post about it.

3. Look around her store and post about what you’d buy with your coupon.

4. Look around her store and post a comment about which kit is your favorite.

5. If you have a blog…post about this giveaway.

That’s five chances to win! I’m telling you once you look around her store you’ll be hooked. I’ve blown about two months of my entertainment/book/magazine money. She also has lots of free things. I’m telling you…..YOU WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED !


The contest ends Friday 7pm CST. Winners will be announced on Saturday!


Just to get you pumped, I’ve included another game similar to the one I posted yesterday. All you need are paper clip spinners and white boards or paper. Students spin and add the two numbers together.

Adding Up Sweet Treats

“I’m supposed to be on vacation!”

Remember that line from City Slickers Smile

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Cute Word Work!

I just discovered Just So Scrappy! LOVE IT! I‘d promised myself I’d take it easy this week…have a real Spring Break. IMPOSSIBLE.

I whipped these babies up right quick, and hope they can be of use to someone. All you need are paperclip spinners. You laminate the board and cut out and laminate the letter cards.

I plan to use these with a few of my strugglers who aren’t consistently automatic in taking apart words and blending them back. I figured having the cards would enable them to touch and say each sound then blend them.

Directions: They’d spin the spinner and place the letter card in the first square. Then spin again and do the same thing until they have three or two letter cards (depending on which mat they have). After they decide if it’s a real word or nonsense word, they would then touch and blend the word together.

I only want them to blend if it’s a real word.

If I make a recording sheet I’ll post it, but I’m anticipating just having them write the word on individual white boards.

If you’d like a copy just click on the picture to download.

I hope I did it right…I haven’t used Google Docs in a while. Smile





Monday, March 14, 2011

The Cow Jumped Over the Moon

I’ve uploaded my newest Read the Room and Sentence Reading Kits to TpT. There is

The Cow Jumped Over the Moon Read the Room Kit or

The Cow Jumped Over the Moon Sentence Reading Kit. 

You can purchase them separately or get the combo pack. I tried them out before Spring Break and my students loved them!


The Cow Jumped Over the Moon Read the Room Kit






The Cow Jumped Over the Moon Sentence Reading Kit

image  image



Book Giveaway Winner

Here it is….the winner of Hands On Math is… number 31!


Tanya said…Math stations that I like using are the quick and easy to put together type. Dice games are great. Give first graders a pair of dice and a recording sheet and they can really add or subtract the afternoon away.

Alright Tanya you have until Wednesday to e-mail me with your school address so I can get your book to you!

Thanks to everyone who shared their ideas! I got some good ones to add to my bag of math station tricks!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Henry and Mudge Literacy Journal


Here is the Literacy Journal I plan to use with our Henry and Mudge stories.

I plan to make several copies of the Favorite Part and Story Map pages. I’ll compile the first six pages into their journals.

I’ll leave he book recommendation  out of the journal, and instead make several copies so my students can complete these as they finish a book during the week.

After they complete their recommendations I’ll post the forms on a special bulletin board in the room.



Henry and Mudge Literature Study Journal

Ms. A

Henry and Mudge and Mrs. Hopper’s House

This week is Spring Break for me…but here’s the word work my students will work on for our next story, Henry and Mudge and Mrs. Hopper’s House.

They will sort the words onto the correct mat. Then I’ll have them use a dry erase board and marker to write sentences. I’ll probably do this with my guided reading groups first then put it out as a Work on Words choice.

Owl word sort

We are also going to do a lit study of all the Henry and Mudge books. I’m working on the Literature Journal for that as well as my regular literacy pack. Hope to get them done by mid week…so check back soon.

I know  some people abhor “worksheets” but I don’t feel like my Lit Packets are just a collection of worksheets…more like tools to show what my students have learned for the week. It’s written evidence that’s completely engaging, totally fun as well as very practical.

Don’t forget tomorrow I’ll announce the winner of my book giveaway!


Ms. A

Friday, March 11, 2011

Book Giveaway

I have confessed in an earlier post that I was indeed a PBJ. Hands-on Math: Learning Numeration Through Manipulative Activities

Well, I have duplicate copies of this book (a story I don’t want to get into at this time) and thought it would be a great giveaway.

This  would be good for math stations. There are three sections, each one dealing with hands on numeration activities.

Section 1: Numeration Activities through 100

Section 2: Numeration Activities through 1,000

Section 3: Numeration Activities through 100,000,000

So I’ve decided to give it away to one lucky winner. I figured what better way to kick off my Spring Break than to give. Who doesn’t love free stuff!

All you have to do is:

1. Leave a post about one math station or fun math activity you do with your class.

2. Follow my blog.


The contest ends Sunday-Midnight CST.

Monday I’ll post the winner.


Ms. A

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Winners of Light Up the Night Read the Room Kit


The Winners are!!!!

#35:  Amy




#70: Mireya Aguirre



#9 Pinks My Ink 



congratulations ladies!!!!

You have until Thursday 8pm CST to contact me by e-mail to claim your prize.

Thanks to everyone who entered my little give away. Your kind comments made my heart swoon.

If you think this was something...I got the Big Lebowski  of giveaways coming up next week. 

Has anyone ever seen that movie? Hiiiilarious!!!


BTW: For those of you who downloaded my Light Up the Night Sentence Reading Kit click  Here to download an updated version. I had to fix a couple of sentences…that’s what I get for being in a hurry ;D

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Be My Guinea Pig… Please



A lovely teacher just e-mailed me and asked if I could make a Read the Room Kit with sentences.

It’s funny because doing that very same thing crossed my mind this week.

So I’ve uploaded my very first Sentence Read the Room Kit. And here’s the best part….are you ready? It’s free! You get to be my official testers…let me know how it works for you.

All I ask is that you rate the item at my storefront…and possibly leave a comment…at my storefront. Please…please…pretty please.


Ms. A

Don’t forget the contest for the original Light Up the Night Read the Room Kit ends tomorrow at 7pm CST.

Peter’s Chair

This week we are reading Peter’s Chair. Here is the literacy pack and the work on words activity I’ll use with this story. Don’t forget to enter the contest for my Light Up the Night Give Away. It ends tomorrow at 7pm cst.


Peters Chair Pack


Yummy Barbecue Word Sort

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Light Up the Night Read the Room Kit

Here’s your chance to win my newest TpT product. My Light Up the Night Read the Room Kit showcases long i: ie and igh words. This contest will last until Monday March 7th at 7:00 pm Central Time.

Here’s what you have to do:

1. Follow my blog and post about it.

2. Follow me on Teachers Pay Teachers and post about it.

3. Link my contest on your blog (if you have one) and post about it.

That’s three chances to win.

I will choose three winners and post the results on Tuesday. Good Luck!!!




Friday, March 4, 2011

Descriptive Writing and Adjectives

We are still working on adjectives….it’s so much fun and the students are having a great time with it. This week during D5(Work on Writing) they completed the activity below. I forgot to take pictures of the student’s work but will hopefully have it posted by next week!


Descriptive Writing Kit -


Have a great weekend!

Ms. A