Monday, October 29, 2012

NY and Motivational Monday Linky

I made it to New York. The one and only, Lucy Calkins was there!!! Tony Wagner was the key note speaker and my notes (10 long pages) prove how amazing it was to be there.
I am downloading pictures, lesson planning and working on typing my notes. Can't wait to share.

While I work on that, I am joining Sara's Linky by sharing some of my favorite quotes. I am a quote kind of girl.
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Thinking about all of you who are being affected by the hurricane. 

Monday, October 22, 2012

Back to Work and 2nd Grade Bloggy Friends

I went back to work last Thursday after my super lazy break. I did not clean the house, I did not work on school work, I did not attend any professional development... I just rested.

My students came back today and they were absolutely fabulous! It was like they never left. Sometimes our track out time (three week break) is long enough for them to forget everything. Not this time.

I am expected to get observed this week...sometime before my principal retires (let's not go there, I have cried already).  Today I expected her to walk through the door and part of me really wanted her to. The kids were magnificent and I am so ready to have an amazing week with my kiddos (we'll talk Friday).

I am also planning on flying to New York (Columbia University) to attend the Teacher's College Saturday workshops. I am not sure if this trip will take place as I can't find a place to stay. This poor teacher cannot afford a $300 hotel stay. Boo! I guess this is what happens when you don't plan ahead. 

Casey is hosting a linky party about graphics. I love linky parties and second grade blogs :)


Erin has a 200 follower giveaway and I am very happy to be part of it. Anything for a second grade bloggy friend :)

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Hoping to get observed tomorrow!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Two Small Freebies (Exit Slips and Halloween Homework Passes)

I purchased this guy in the summer. Cookies were gone right after the purchase :)
I knew he had to be used in my classroom since the Mr. thought the bear does not match our decor.  :)

I had read about Exit Slips and this is my Beary own way of using the same fantastic idea. 
I measured and created two different labels for Mr. Bear, exit slips and a sign with ideas on what to share. 

The idea is to find something Beary (insert your choice here) to share about, at the end of the day.

Find them here.


Halloween Homework Passes anyone?  I am looking forward to stealing organizing my kids' candy right after they go to bed.
I made these homework passes for my students and I am also sending it to my son's teacher (hint, hint).

Find them here.

If you download them (either one), would you leave me some love?  My comment box has been really sad lately.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Three Favorites

I learned way back when, that the best way to find great ideas for my classroom, was by visiting my peers. I read teaching magazines and visited as many teachers as I was able to, during my teaching practicums and student teaching placement.  I have to say... there is no magazine that can replace visiting many, many classrooms. Welcome to mine :)

My Three favorites:

Can I go to the bathroom?
I am sure I heard this question about a zillion times. I used a log, bathroom passes, hand signals, common bathroom breaks... until...
Whooooo Went to the Bathroom and Who Went to the Library was born. (Straight from Pinterest - with a twist).
The inside of my door has two top hooks. In the beginning of the year the kids learn that only two kids (one for a boy and one for a girl) are allowed to use the bathroom (located in the hallway) and/or get a drink of water from the water fountain.

There is no need to ask for permission to go to the bathroom. Really???!!!!

The only rule: You can use the bathroom when the teacher is not doing a mini lesson, or when she is not  in the middle of her famous speeches :)

I have a basket with all their names (laminated owl notepad sheets with a ring). One for the boys, one for the girls. If they need to use the bathroom, they do not ask bug me, they just go.

The bottom 4 hooks are for 4 kids who are visiting the library. Four kids can visit the library (no boy/girl rule here) at the same time.  Again, they do not ask, they just go. The best times to go to the library are while we are doing morning work and snack time.

Did you bring...?
I had issues tracking when they kids returned a form the office needed, payment for a field trip, paid for their yearbook ... until...
My quick check off list was invented.
After I get my class list, I type their names in alphabetical order (first names only). It must be thin enough to fit into one of those long notebooks you find at Michael's Dollar bin.

I use this quick check off list when the kids are asked to bring a payment, when I finish writing their report cards, when I get field trip money... I pretty much use it for anything I need to make sure no one is forgotten.  This way I do not have have to flip through pages, forms, checks....
This is a quick way to see who needs to turn something in. Voila'!

Noisy Base Ten Blocks and Quick Erasing?
We use our noisy base ten blocks quite often. It is not fun hearing all the crashing of base ten blocks.

On the other hand, how long do your kiddos take to erase their work form their white boards?

Both problems solved :)
We have something called Red Carpets.  Michael's rectangular sheets of felt.  I drew the lines to separate the hundreds, tens and ones). Whenever you are ready to use Base Ten Blocks just pretend you are me: "Please use a red carpet and show me what you know about place value". :)

If you think black socks were just to keep your feet warm...let me tell ya'. They are the best white board erasers every invented! I purchased a dozen of black socks which they usually smell (as if I was going to give them my stinky socks). I promise you they clean the whiteboard in no time!

Any tips that make your life easier?

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Homes and Giveaway

I am part of Halle's and Jenna's amazing giveaway.  I was wondering if I could enter because their goodies are fabulous! 


I went on a Parade... of Homes that is. My kids had a four hour play date, so I decided to visit three town homes in the area. I am hoping to check out some other homes tomorrow....with the kids :( The Mr. is working, so they are stuck with me.

I love to go to get decorating ideas. You should see my house. It looks like we just moved in (it's been 3 years).


I absolutely loved the muy grandisimo flower art and the chandelier prints.


This was the purple house. Super cute and girly.  I loved the seating area in the master bedroom.


Cute little TV nook and candy corn towels...how festive!


Loved the lamp and headboards.

Any advice on what room to decorate first? My house needs some serious TLC.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Winners and Promotion Dinner

My apologies for taking all day to blog about this.  I woke up at 11:00, stayed in my pajamas until 4:00 and did nothing all morning day. I am very proud of myself.

Congratulations to Julie and Christina. I hope you find them useful.  I have e-mailed you. 

I wish I could tell you I got some kind a promotion, or even a teeny tiny pay race. No, not me :(
We celebrated the Mr. tonight.  Table of 8, Maggiano's (Italian food), well behaved kids, dessert, wine and lots of bread for me, made for a  perfect evening.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Writing or Math? (Giveaway)

I am a bad, bad bloggy friend. The day I published my second product (with all the excitement) I forgot to have a quick giveaway. Then I realized I never did it for the first one either :(

Writing or Math?  That is the question.


This is a quick giveaway. Hurry go enter!

a Rafflecopter giveaway a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, October 5, 2012

Halloween Freebie

I took a three hour nap today and I can't sleep.  So I made this to share with you.

Download here.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

October Currently and some Pinteresting Ideas

October has brought us some beautiful Carolina blue skies, cool weather (good bye air conditioning) and pumpkins everywhere you go.

My kids have not decided what they want to be for Halloween, and all I want is Laffy Taffy!

Farley has a Currently for the Classroom! I must check it out :)


I have compiled some ideas I have been meaning to try. I'd like share with you in case you find something Pinteresting! You can find all the links here...under Halloween.


Happy Pumpkin Month!

Number Patterns and Snakes (freebie)

What's the rule? and Number Patterns was the last math topic in my classroom before our break. I gave the kids markers, pattern cards, white boards, and hundred charts. Model, think aloud, practice, model, teach a partner, model...repeat.

We started with two digit numbers. I modeled how to find the number pattern step by step. We did a lot of these before moving on to three digits.


We used two color markers. The first marker was to find the pattern, the second was to extend the pattern. They loved it! 

Then came the snakes!  I printed the snake pattern using different color paper to make them pop. The kids 'planned' their number pattern before getting the snake sheet. They had to choose a pattern (+2, +5, +11, -12...anything they wanted), and then transfer that to their numerical snake.


Here's the snake pattern for ya'.

You can find all my number cards and much more here. Thanks Jaime for all your help!