Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Rainbow Brights Chalkboard Kids... AND a FREEBIE!!

Hi Ya'll!  I have been busy working on this classroom set for a fellow teacher for a WHILE now.  She gave me some ideas what she was looking for and I started creating.  I have to admit this has turned out cuter than I ever imagined.  She wanted BRIGHT colors, she wanted chalkboard and she loves the Melonheadz Kidlettes. So I meshed all three and came up with this.


As usual I've bundled lots of stuff in this pack so here's a little sneak peak of some of the items:
Alphabet
One of my favorite things in this set are the shape posters... I love the polka dots!

There are even calendar pieces that go with this set.  My FAVORITE part of this set are the Color Posters!  I know they don't go with my room but I want to print them out and use them anyway!!!
There is a ton more to this set and I won't bore you with all the details but if you would like to check out the preview file you can go HERE. I am having a GIVEAWAY on my facebook page right now... so if you want to enter, like my page, share the post, tag a friend and they can win the pack too!  If you don't like bright colors or want a different theme, I have lots of other decor packs in my store you can pick from if you win!  I will be choosing a winner tomorrow at 5 p.m. CST!  If you just can't wait, everything in my store is 20% off today and tomorrow! (July 29 and July 30) 

I mentioned in the title of this text that there is a FREEBIE today!  This pack inspired me to create some posters with cute rainbow sayings... they turned out like this:


With all her cute kidlettes, Nikki makes it SO hard to choose which cutie patooties to use ~ so I made two different options.


And this is definitely my new mantra... Enjoy your last few days of summer break and don't forget to play in the rain, laugh often, smile, paint rainbows, believe in fairy tales, sing silly songs and DREAM BIG!  Click on any of the pictures above to grab this for your classroom! Happy Tuesday!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Updates and More Updates! Jazzin' things up a bit!

As I've been updating a lot of my products on TPT this summer, I can't help but think about Erica Bohrer's post about "Getting Started on TPT". She talks about what her first products looked like versus her more recent items.  I had to chuckle as I look back on things I made years ago compared to my more recent items.  I think I had some really good concepts but visually some of my stuff just didn't cut it.  I realize it's a process... I've learned and grown and still have so much more to learn but I do feel like my newer items are so much more appealing.  (Side note:  If you haven't read Erica's post and are thinking about using TPT ~ it is a must read FULL of valuable information!) 

Here is an example of what I'm talking about:
This poster has been updated with all new fonts, backgrounds and clip art.  
Here is what it looked like before the updates:

UMMMM.... I loved these posters and used them for each unit of Reading Street... But seriously they I had to revamp! If by chance you purchased these posters... They have ALL been updated and you can go to your purchases on TPT and re-download.  

Not only did I update THESE posters but since we are using the new Common Core Edition of Reading Street... many of the concepts changed.  SO I created a new product that I am in love with... and I can't wait to use them on my focus wall! 

This is the same concept as the first poster but slightly different terminology for Common Core.  I created these all new Common Core Versions and I have to admit I'm loving the look of them!  Here is Unit 1:

I made each unit a different color and tried to make them as visually appealing and kid-friendly so that my students can use these as a reference as we learn each grammar concept. 
I especially love the Melonheadz clipart.  I am a COMPLETE ADDICT... Serious UH-DICT-ION! Okay ya'll... one last image to share ~


I have updated tons more but just thought I'd share some of the updates I've made this summer. I just got the word that I can get into my classroom on Monday so I guess it's time for back to school mode!  I've been pinning and getting lots of ideas on ways to set up my classroom this year. YOWZA!  So excited!  



Monday, June 30, 2014

Last Day of June... July already?

Hello all!  I know it's been forever... It makes me so sad just to think about how long I've been away from the blogging world.  I've still kept up with things.. I just didn't post about my own happenings.  I've gone back and forth about whether or not I should share about the things going on in my life and why I haven't posted but I think that will come in time as I get back in the swing of things.  I am in a good place now, emotionally, spiritually, physically (location wise - yes I moved) so let's just say there was a lot going on but I'm very happy with where I am now and my kids are doing well also!
Sooooo..... I can't believe that July is tomorrow!  Where did June go?  I wanted to share a new theme pack I created for a teacher as a request.  It's the largest classroom set I've done and I'm very excited about it. If you are looking for a new theme or if you are doing a Camping Theme you may want to check it out!

What I love about this set is all of the Summer Camp Kidlettes and the Woodland Animals.  This set includes everything you could imagine...plus a little more! Here are some examples of what's included.
I love the Alphabet Cards with all the camping items!  All of the vowels are outlined in your choice of either pink or aqua blue.
How cute are these number posters?  The set displays the numeral, the number word, tally marks and ten frames so students can refer to these all year long! 
I love the camp signs to display the 2D and 3D shapes!
What camping theme could be complete without bug jars?  What a great way to display color words in your classroom!

Months and Days of the Week
Nameplates in different designs and colors!
I love how the word wall headers and banner turned out!  All the vowels are blue so students can distinguish the vowels from the consonants.



Classroom Jobs!  How adorable is this??!! I'm in L.O.V.E.
The set includes a welcome banner and a banner that says "READ S'MORE".  This will be so cute hanging in the classroom library! 

If you are like me... I want everything to match.  So I made tons of supply labels for tubs, bins, boxes, whatever you'd like to use them for. 
These will be adorable attached to a baggie filled with marshmallows, graham crackers and a small chocolate bar!  I thought this might be a cute back to school welcome gift!
Finally, I included tons of colored pennant flags so you can make banners for your classroom.

After I finished this pack, I decided to make all the labels, banners and binder covers editable.  So I created this add-on pack. You can check it out here: 

Last thing, I promise!  LOL My friend requested a behavior chart to match so I'm very pleased with this new chart.  It includes 2 different behavior logs and a chart explanation for parents.  Plus, when students reach the top, they get an Eagle Badge!  Take a look:
I also created these in Chevron... but I think I like the solid backgrounds more.
When students reach the top, they earn an Eagle Badge.  Here they are:
I also created an Explanation Chart to keep in your students binders or folder all year for the parents!
I wasn't sure if I would even be able to make this work since my friend wanted straight faces and a sad face on the campers at the bottom. (She teaches Kindergarten)... but I talked with Nikki from Melonheadz and she gave me permission to use the versions I modified slightly. She is so wonderful! I love her clipart and wish I could own every set!  I'd really like to be in Vegas this summer at the TPT Conference so I could take her class. I asked her if she would consider doing an online tutorial... so I'm keeping my fingers crossed for that!
I guess I've posted quite a bit for one day!  I am currently reading the new version of Daily 5 and can't wait to post some about that.  I have done Daily 5 in my classroom for 4 years now and my co-workers were lucky enough to go see Gail Boushey and Joan Moser in person!  (Can you detect a little jealousy there?) It has totally transformed the way I run my classroom and I can't wait to share some things with you!  I've been loving all the posts so far! 
By the way ~ all my Camping Theme Decor is on sale TODAY (June 30th) and TOMORROW (July 1st)!  20% off ~ please share if you know a teacher choosing camping as their theme this year! Have a wonderful day! 

Monday, September 2, 2013

First Week Survival ~ Daily 5 Up and Running

I can't believe this three day weekend went SO fast... entirely too fast!  I would love to have just ONE more day! And even though I'm dead dog tired I told myself I had to blog and share with you a few things from our first full week back.  I know many of you do Daily 5 and we have gotten it up and running piece by piece.  I'm still not taking groups yet.  I want to make sure they are doing all activities properly and can problem solve and take care of situations without interrupting my group.  I love the first few weeks of Daily 5 because I am able to meander around the room and listen to kids read, watch them write, watch them build words and really get to know my students by having small conversations with them during this time. We start out with Read to Self and here are a few pics I took during that time.



We talked a lot about choosing just right books and using the five finger rule.  We also practice getting our book boxes and having them by our side during Daily 5.  After they all got the hang of Read to Self I introduced word work.  We began our first weekly word study last week and took our first spelling test on Friday!  I was amazed that 90% of my class spelled and wrote 100% of the words correctly!  Usually the first test is a doozy just because it's their first one.  I was blown away!  Word Work allows my students to practice these weekly words.  They always have a "must-do" and then they can choose several different activities to practice spelling and making words.  My "must-do" varies daily.  I use many of the pages from Abby's Short Vowels Pack and some word family activity pages from the great Cherry Carl .  I start out only introducing magnetic letters, rainbow words using smelly markers and glitter pens and stamps.  I add more throughout the year as I feel they can handle it.  Here are a few pics I took during word work.

As you can see our first week is short a.  She spelled "we" but as long as I see them building words it makes me happy. I love hearing them read me the words they have made.


These words were off of our word wall.  We start out with about 15 words on the word wall from Kindergarten or High Frequency words they will use a lot.  As you can see I think it's time for me to get some new ink pads!

I also have introduced writing.  I know that seems like a lot but we have writer's workshop every morning.  I like to introduce some "fun" writing choices so students can write and illustrate with markers.  One of our first writing activities is making a card.  I use the monthly premade card templates from Deedee Will's Writing Work Stations.  I also use her monthly vocabulary cards to hang in my writing center and I also use the corresponding page of the monthly words in my student's writing folders for writer's workshop.



Students are able to color and be creative during this time but are writing to their friends or their teacher.  This gives them more practice using the strategies we are learning during writer's workshop like stretching out the sounds in words.

On Friday I wanted to do something fun and yet connect it to our curriculum.  Since this week was short a and we worked with -at words, I found the cutest craftivity that allowed the students to write a story using at words and they got to make their own "Cat on a Mat".  The activity is by Mel From the Pond.  I fell in LOVE with it and my students did too! So after students wrote stories about their cat (and some were SO hilarious) we broke out the scissors and glue and began making our cats. I love standing back and watching how my new first graders use scissors and glue.

I wanted to take pictures of their stories too and forgot to take them before leaving for the weekend (it wasn't like I was in a hurry to start a three day weekend or anything ;)  I'll try to post them another time because they were so adorable!  Here is some more pics of our super cute craft!




Next week is only four days but we will be working with short i. I will be introducing more writing choices, our listening station and read with someone next week.  I love to hear how others use Daily 5!  I steal grab ideas from teachers all the time. It has to be my favorite time of the day!

Hope you had a fabulous three day weekend!  

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Freebies and Birthday/Back to School Sale!

The last few days have been super busy!  As I'm sure it is for all of you... back to school is here and I'm checking things off my to do list only not as fast as I want.  I don't have much to share today - because I'm getting ready to head out the door to celebrate my birthday! Nothing spectacular other than spending the day with my kiddos and having a dinner out ~ (Actually that's pretty spectacular) but I feel like I need a little break from it all. :)

I recently went to a whole brain teaching conference and absolutely L.O.V.E.D. it!  I used whole brain some in my classroom last year but now that I've experienced the workshop I'm ready to give it all a try this year.  First freebie I'm sharing is the WBT rules and signs I made:


You can download them for free HERE.
I have included these WITH and WITHOUT backgrounds in case you want to save some ink :)

I'm really excited about implementing Whole Brain and one piece that I'm SUPER excited about is the Super Improvers Wall.  All students start at the bottom and work their way up to the top by accomplishing goals... not just accomplishing but by showing IMPROVEMENT.  Students strive to make it to the top! You can always visit the Whole Brain Teaching website for more information.  SO - My next freebie are the super improver wall headers (10 levels and 10 different colors):



 Click on the first image to download for FREE!

But wait ~ there's more!  LOL For those of you who are interested in a Forest or an Owl Theme this year, I've had some requests for Daily 5 Posters in those themes.  So I've recently posted those for free also in my TPT Store.


These are the Forest Posters. Click on the image to download :)


These are the Owl Posters. Click on the image to download :)

Both of these poster sets also come with and without the backgrounds to save on ink.

There are so many other things I've been working on for Open House and the First Day of School... but I will save them for tomorrow. 
My daughter surprised me this morning with a homemade card.  It was super sweet... but I could've done without the birthday candles on the cake. :)  Takes the guessing out of how old I am! 
I just realized she left the d out of birthday.  She's really into writing in cursive right now. As far as I'm concerned homemade cards are 1,000 times better than Hallmark ;)

One last thing...I'm throwing a sale in my TPT store today through Saturday!  EVERYTHING is 20% off!
How many more days for you?  Our first school day is Wednesday, August 14th. I'm already getting the jitters!  Have a great day!
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