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Saturday, July 16, 2011

New Giveaway Winner

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Math Work Station Binder Update (Ch. 7)

Sorry I'm behind - you know - LIFE!! Well anyway, I've added some wonderful resources posted by wonderful  teachers in our blog community. Stop by to view my binder. This is the greatest way to store and organize materials and ideas. I can't wait to upload all of my materials into another binder.

Shapes, Shapes Everywhere and Not a Bite to Eat

My copy of Debbie Diller's Math Stations came yesterday. I was so excited when I say the UPS truck leaving my street. I wanted to share this activity to go with Chapter 7. During our unit on three-dimensional shapes, we made models using foam shapes, marshmallows, and toothpicks. Several years ago, I tried the activity with coffee stirrers and pipe cleaners. The children had trouble forming the shapes. So I adapted the idea to make it edible. Hope you try it this year with your mathematicians. You can link up with Chapter 7 here.

Rectangular Prism - check out his design using  supporting toothpicks
Triangular Pyramid
Another triangular pyramid -  I was impressed with her engineering skills. She laid out each face then smushed the marshmallows together at the top to join them.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

We have a winner!!

Thank you for blogging about my giveaway and following me!! I'm trying to get to 150 followers by next week. If I make it, I have a great giveaway to announce. So pass the word along. Link up and help me reach my goal. I'll be out of town for a few days, but will update my posts before I leave. Now for the winners...

Ladies, please send me your email addresses so I can get your mailing address or send you your file. Ms. Magee, I think I have yours, but send it just in case. Congrats!! If I haven't heard from you within 48 hours, I'll choose a runner up.

Just a few more hours...

Don't forget to enter my 100 follower giveaway. It ends tonight.

Here's a chance for another entry:
send out a reminder to enter the giveaway on your blog, facebook, or twitter (even if you have already blogged about the giveaway)!!

Remember, there will be two winners.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Favorite Books Linky Party

Reading is an adventure that unlocks worlds, feelings, passions, and memories we hold dear.
My favorite childhood book has to be Margeret Wise Brown's Goodnight Moon. In seventh grade, I would walk from class to class with a book in hand. We passed around Judy Blume's Are You There God?, It's Me Margaret. By the time I got to read it, I had to hold it gingerly so the pages wouldn't fall out. My favorite classroom read aloud is The Gingerbread Cowboy. I discovered this book several years ago while looking for versions of gingerbread man stories. One of my boys rapped the repeating verse and I was hooked. Every year when I share this book, I have to share the story of why it's my favorite. During the school year, I only read profession books. My favorite is Debbie Miller's Reading With Meaning. I still pick it up every year and discover a new insight to incorporate in my reading instruction. During the summer, I love to find a great beach book - something that stirs up emotions and causes me to reflect on my personal relationships. My absolute favorite so far was a book I read last summer - The Help. Currently, I am doing something I have never done before - I am reading more than one book at the same time. These are my current reads: Debbie Diller's Spaces and Places, Nicholas Sparks' A Walk To Remember, Candice Cameron Bure's Reshaping It All, and Debbie Diller's math station book (online).

Now it's your turn, but don't delay. There are only a few more days to join the party.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Drumroll Please......

It's finally here!!! I'm announcing my 100 giveaway. This is great for poetry and calendar math.
I am also giving away number of the day unit as a second prize. Here's how to enter:
1 entry for following my blog
1 entry for adding my button to your sidebar
2 entries for joining my linky party
2 entries for blogging about my giveaway or sharing a post from it
(Make sure you leave two comments with a link for joining the linky party or your blog referral.)
I will choose a winner Wed., July 13 at 9:00 pm.

Friday, July 8, 2011


I really want tubs like everyone is finding at the Target dollar spots. Here's the problem - I can't find a Target with these tubs without traveling for more than an hour or so. I will send a wonderful personal shopper the funds to purchase them for me and cover shipping costs. Is there anyone out there who would be willing to help out a fellow teacher and bloggy friend? You can leave me a comment with your email or just email me by clicking on the button below.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Interest Survey Linky Party

My Top Ten

10. I finally have a home. I moved all over the state of South Carolina while I was growing up. Now Gaffney is my home - I've lived here for 22 years.

9. I've only been teaching for 7 years. I was a stay at home mom.

8. Just recently became a Nicholas Sparks fan. I had seen several of his movies and needed a good beach read - The Guardian. Loved it!! Next on my list is A Walk to Remember.

7. My favorite movies are the Pirates of the Caribbean movies.

6.Favorite scene from Pirates is on the beach when Will says good-bye to Elizabeth. If you haven't seen it, I don't want to spoil it. Let's just say that I am ready to kiss my hubbie right then!

5. Reality TV reminds me how truly blessed I am. Housewives!! Ha - most of them aren't even wives any more. And yet, I still keep watching.

4. With that said, those are only my guilty sneeks on TV. My absolute favs are The Mentalist, Drop      Dead Diva, Criminal Minds, and Supernatural, of course. I married a Dean!!!

3. Teaching is a calling for me. It's what God had planned for my life. Each day I ask him to lead me in my actions, words, and in everything I do.

2. My other calling was to be a mother of three wonderful children. I have two boys, 16 and 13, and a girl, 10. They bring joy, laughter and tears daily.

1. My husband (the coach) and I are about to celebrate our 19th anniversary. He is my best friend. He jokes with me all the time that empty nest is just another opportunity to extend our love to his athletes - and, once again, he is soooo right!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

You just got a postcard, you just got a postcard


Who doesn't love to see anything besides a bill in the mailbox? My class will be participating in a postcard exchange and am inviting you to join in the fun. Our school is revamping our hallways with freshly painted lampposts and street signs. I want to have a mailbox installed outside my door, but may have to settle for my teacher box. I'll live. Hurry, before you run out of time. Start looking for state postcards at your local flea markets or Cracker Barrel store. has discounts on bulk postcards and they're available in many different formats for each state.

Giveaway is in sight!!

Well friends, I'm 6 followers away from 100!! You know what that means, a freebie and a giveaway. I will post a freebie as soon as I hit it. Then I will choose 4 winners to choose some fabulous prizes. Details will follow. Help me get there by posting and leaving a comment. If you refer a follower, be sure to let me know for an extra chance to win. Thank you to all of you who have been there to support me along this journey. Because of your tips and tutorials, I have been able to create two more blogs for my online course.


Monday, July 4, 2011

Math Work Station Binder Update

Okay, so I took a little longer than the weekend. Sorry. I'm working on my second masters this summer in addition to this book study and reading two other books (one professional/one fun). I have updated some wonderful resources for chapters 5 and 6. I'll post the Ch. 7 resources by next weekend.

Can you believe I only spent $26?

I'm disappointed, but happy with my finds. I went to Target looking for the wonderful baskets and bins everybody was finding only to be disappointed yet again. However, I did find the cutest and kid friendly wipe off markers and erasers to use with these cute posters. Money, money, money!!! I have so many ideas for these mats.


These boxes are going to store partner sets of base ten manipulatives. The trays are for sorting. I have some round trays I bought at DT several years ago, but I can place rule cards or math talk cards in the center for sorting. The calendar notepad was so cute, but I got an idea while I was staring at it in the middle of DT. At first I tried to justify buying it as another organizational tool, but then I remembered TIMELINE!! It's magnetic - so I'll write important events for the week and post it on the fridge in my room. After we complete the events, the page can be torn off and added to the classroom scrapbook with a picture of the week!! I'm super ecstatic over this idea.


Are you too busy or scared to design a blog?

If the answer is yes, then you must click here immediately. Jena Snowden has extended her giveaway deadline until midnight tomorrow night. If you already have a blog, she'll design a new one for you. This is great if you want to add a classroom blog like me.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Folder/Binder Insert

Thank you to Brooke Perry for inspiring such a neat idea. Click here to check out her post:

In the past, I have printed out a generic binder or folder insert on printed stationary with the child's name, my room #, and our school. I have also attached a little reminder to return it to school each day. After reading Brooke's post, I was inspired to create this little organizational tool.
Hammett Folder Insert

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Math Stations Binder

Thanks to Kristen at LadyBug Teacher Files! I started my own binder to help me organize my favorite materials and ideas that were shared by all of my wonderful bloggy sisters during the Debbie Diller book study. I've only made it to Chapter 4. I will upload Ch. 5 this week. Here is a link to my LiveBinder. Please leave me a comment and become a follower if you're not already following.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Stuart J. Murphy Downloads

Becca over at Simply 2nd Resources blogged about using Stuart J. Murphy's math books, which I also love. If you have ever used his books in your math lessons, you may have noticed the extensions in the back of each book. Last year, I hopped over to his website and found these wonderful downloads. I'll post some of the materials I have used with them later this week.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Postcard Exchange and giveaway

If you live in the following states: Washington, Oregon, Montana, South Dakota, Minnesota, Colorado, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Loiusiana, Indiana, West Virginia, Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Maryland, Deleware, Rhode Island or Massachusets - stop right now and head over the postcard exchange that Primary Graffiti and Techy Teacher are hosting.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Calendar Math vs. Promethean Board Linky Party

Our district implemented Every Day Counts calendar math many years ago. I can admit that I resisted using the program for a couple of years, but saw the benefits of daily instruction after only a few weeks. The problem was having only three small bulletin boards to use. Then the questions - which one do I use? What do I include? What do I leave out? How can I keep the kids attention? How can I design it so that everyone can see? Then, I was blessed with my BOARD!!! It took me a whole summer to create my first flipchart, but thanks to my IT lady, the following months became easier. I love using the board for calendar math because it gives the helper for the day the opportunity to teach the class. I also have an opportunity to assess on several standards at once. I have posted a few of them here on my blog. Sorry that I slacked off. I'll redo them for the whole school year and post them in the next couple of weeks.

April Calendar
March Calendar
February Calendar

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Positively Rewarding Linky Party

My principal asked us to contribute a list of possible positive rewards to include in our behavior plan for the fall. We are using PBIS and looking at a possible "Honey Pot" (our school mascot is a bear). I submitted a list, but still want some input from teachers who have implemented PBIS. If you have a great idea, join in the fun. My principal and I will submit the entries to our staff for a vote and choose a winner - PRIZE!!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Daily Schedule

This is my schedule for this past school year when I implemented Daily 5. I only did two rotations. Next year, I plan to incorporate writing workshop into this routine and use three rotations. My planning/special period, lunch, recess, and computer lab times were set by the principal. We are allowed to schedule content areas, but have criteria regarding instructional time set by the district. How much of your schedule do you have control over? Leave me a comment and let me know.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Daily 5 Response Forms

I created these for a fellow PTer. These are meant to be used in a three prong folder. If you would like for me to adjust this format to fit your schedule, leave me a comment and I'll work on it for you.

Crawl over and see my new blog design

I have been inspired by all of your creative sites since school ended. I wanted to try to develop my own design and finally had time to give it a whirl. Thanks to Hadar for pointing me in the right direction. Thanks also to Kristen at Ladybug Teacher Files for all of her tutorials! Leave me a comment to let me know what you think. Stay tuned for the grand opening of my TPT store in a few weeks and a giveaway!!!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Future Builders of America

Our first grade class participated in the Lowe’s Build and Grow clinic in the classroom. Ms. Kimberly teaches the free how-to clinics two Saturdays a month at Lowe’s in Gaffney. She taught the students how to use the safety equipment, follow a written set of directions, and safely use a hammer. The boys built a table top basketball game complete with stickers and score board. The girls built a see through planter adorned with flowers. The children received a free work apron, safety goggles, merit badge, and completion certificate from Lowe’s. We had a busy morning as the children hammered away. What a delight to watch classmates join together to ensure that each project was completed in time. We are fortunate to have a wonderful and supportive community at Limestone-Central Elementary.
 If you are interested in this program, visit your local Lowe's store and speak with their coordinator. You can visit their website by following this link:

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Desks and tables classroom

Several years ago I had only tables in my first grade classroom in effort to appease my principal's experimental whim. We kept them until Christmas and converted the classroom to desks over break. The thought was that the children would transition from the kindergarten Montessori classroom setup to a more traditional first grade setup. I struggled with student supply storage during that time. I used drawers for the chidlren, but wasn't happy with that solution. The chair buddies would have been wonderful, but we couldn't afford them. Now I have a table for small group instruction and one for the writing center. The students sit in desk groups. Here is a picture of the groups.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Curls and a Smile: A Mother's Day Giveaway!

Be sure to check out Ms. Morgart's giveaway at Curls and a Smile: A Mother's Day Giveaway!: "Good morning and Happy Mother's Day! All though I have to spend some time today getting ready for an ESL training I am giving tomorrow, I am..."

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Grab My Button

Well, I finally figured out how to create my blog button. Now I need my bloggie friends to help figure out how to share it. Help!!!

Arrgghh!! R controlled vowel games

My kiddos love pirates and popcorn, so I created these sorts. You can use them as a small group concentration game. After modeling, you can use it during word work in Daily 5. My kids love these and their reading strategies are improving as a result. Two birds with one stone!!

Arrgghh Ar Sort

Poppin Vowels Or

Monday, May 2, 2011

In The Teacher's Lounge: 100 Followers Give-Away!

In The Teacher's Lounge: 100 Followers Give-Away!: "I am excited to announce my 100 Followers Give-Away !!! I am so close to hitting 100! I am very psyched and have been thinking of what to..."

Sunday, May 1, 2011

First Grade is Fantabulous!: O-MI-GOODNESS It's GIVE-AWAY Time!

Head on over to First Grade is Fantabulous!: O-MI-GOODNESS It's GIVE-AWAY Time!: "I can't believe I just hit 100 followers . I didn't even realize I was so close. How exciting!'s time for a new give-away. You..."

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Geography project book page

This week we'll be working on our geography postcard project. I have saved our postcards for our Social Studies unit. We are supposed to learn about kids across America, how they are like us and different from us. I couldn't find anything to use with my kids. I created this book page to document a state each day from the main regions of the US. Our focus skill in reading will be fact/opinion the following week, so I decided to introduce it with this unit. Hope you can use it.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Mother's Day Idea

We have a Mother's Day Tea. We send home invitations on floral stationary for the tea, which is held on the Friday before Mother's Day. We serve light pickups and iced tea. The children present their gift (a flower planted in a planter) and a poem or story about their mother. I think we're going to use the Mailbox foldout flower card this year. I'm also going to ask our support staffers to take pics this year so I can post and send home copies with the students. Grandmas are welcome in place of mothers who can't make it.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Do You Dew word sort is fixed!

So sorry. I tried to zip the file because I created three separate word docs. Oh well. Still learning. I think I know what to do next time. Thanks for your patience.

UE/EW word sort

Thank you to all my fellow bloggers for sharing the freebies. Here is my answer to an unusual situation. Our district is still using Scott Foresman's old reading series. This week's skill is ew/ue diphthongs. When I tried to find activities to go with this skill all I could find was ew and oo. So, this is what I came up with for my kiddos this week. Let me know what you think. I'm open to suggestions. I've relied on your help for long enough. It's time to give back. Thank you for following. I am trying to come up with a great giveaway for 100 followers soon. Stay tuned...

Click on the page links below the preview to download.

Monday, April 4, 2011

April Calendar Math Flipchart

Sorry I didn't have this posted for Friday - we are on Spring Break this week and I was so ready to leave on Friday!!! Feel free to make any changes to it once you download it. Click on the calendar below to download.

Friday, March 18, 2011

March Everyday Counts Math Flipchart

So sorry I'm late. I actuall had this ready the last week in February, but I've begun another blog for a class I'm taking. That blog has taken a higher priority since I'm being graded on it. I'll try to do better. Click here for the link.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Do you have Bieber Fever?

I'm not really a fan, but simply couldn't resist this youtube video for the sake of my little ones. Justin reads Dr. Seuss' The Cat in the Hat.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Yes we can propagate!

On Monday, my husband brought his students to our science lab to demonstrate their understanding of horticulture. They brought Tradescantia pallida, commonly known as the wandering jew plant. His students served as teacher/mentors to our first graders who will begin a science unit surrounding the characteristics and needs of plants in the spring. The students learned how to propagate plants by cutting a clipping from a parent plant and transplanting the clipping. These clippings will be used in the spring to further investigate how plants can grow by more than one method. The first grade teachers would like to thank Mr. Hammett, Mr. Middleton, and their students for sharing their classroom experiences and resources with us. Next up - we're making greenhouses in the spring when we begin our unit!!

Monday, January 31, 2011

February Calendar Math Flipchart!!!

Well, this one is a long one. I decided to really stretch it and add as much from the resource book as I possibly could. Let me know if there is something you want added. I have found that this covers most of it. Hope you enjoy. I'm including a screenshot this time. Click on it to download from googledocs.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Debbie Miller math cards

I was so inspired after reading Debbie Diller's new math station book, that I quickly began to tweek some cards I had on file. You will notice the "math talk" cards and the game labels - I haven't finished the game instructions, but you can make your own if you've read her book. I know some of you are going to her workshop in TN and I'm sooooo jealous!! Hope you can use these. Click here to view.
Place Value Cards

Monday, January 17, 2011

Community Helpers

Thanks to Jennifer Jones AGAIN!! I've been following her for several years now and still find some treasured tidbit tucked away. Our community worker day fell apart thanks to the snow and I needed to add something in its place. This is what I found:

Place Value Game

This weekend I spent time online reading Debbie Diller's Math Stations book. I made two pages of notes and was inspired to create the game below. There is a colored background that will show up when you download it. For some reason it doesn't show up in the viewer. If you'd like to read her book online, click here.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Penguin sing along

While following several fellow bloggers today, I found the cutest You Tube clip with Mary Poppins. It includes words, so I was thinking - FLUENCY practice!!! I can't wait to begin a penguin unit just so we can sing along with Mary! Click the penguin below to watch. Also - follow Gladys and Brooke for a chance to win a penguin unit!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

The Mitten online

Well, after a month at home for Christmas break, furlough, and snow days, we're back to school on Tuesday. We'll begin a Jan Brett author study while concentrating on The Mitten. I found an online version on the Barnes & Noble website. It is read by Jan Brett. Click here to listen.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Snowy Numbers | Bishop's Blackboard: A First Grade Blog

Ms. Bishop posted this wonderful lesson on her blog. We will be starting our place value unit when the snow melts and this will a great way to share the snow in the classroom.
Snowy Numbers Bishop's Blackboard: A First Grade Blog

Monday, January 10, 2011

Jan Brett's The Umbrella

Last year we decided to do  a week long author study on Jan Brett. We knew we wanted to complete the unit with a each class performing a reader's theater for the other two classes. I decided to read The Umbrella since it would integrate with our plants unit in the spring. I wrote a reader's theater for the book and have included a link to it on Jan Brett's website. I tried to retell her story using sight words and vocabulary that would be appropriate for each reading level in first grade. Hope you are able to use it in your classroom.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Everyday Counts Math Flipchart

I've been creating these monthly flipcharts for our district this year and thought I'd share the January flipchart. Let me know what you think. As soon as I have February ready, I'll post it.

Click here to download

Weekly Spelling/Reading List

Thanks to Heidi Samuelson for the idea for this list. We were supposed to adopt a new reading series this year. Unfortunately, budget cuts didn't allow that to happen. I was surfing the web for resources to add to our current Scott Foresman series until the adoption is back on task. My parents are constantly asking how we choose the words for our weekly spelling tests. This lists has been helpful in establishing the difference between sight words, spelling families, and fluency lists. We use the list at the bottom for a weekly reading assessment.

Click below to download

Friday, January 7, 2011

Gingerbread Sight Word Game

Okay-think I'm getting the hang of this now. Here is a sight word game I made to go with most any of the Gingerbread man/boy stories. Click on the Gingerbread boy below to download game.

Gingergread addition/subtraction

Thought I'd try creating a math game. This game was originally posted as Leaping Leprechaun by Mrs. Bennett at Lake Forest Elementary in SC. She was named the Golden Apple teacher this week. I'm getting a little stir crazy waiting to return to school on Monday. Our next unit will be The Gingerbread Man, so I created this game to go with the unit. Hope you like it. Thanks to all of the wonderful teachers who have paved the way with their creative blogs. You have inspired me.