Monday, February 27, 2012

I'm still here and a long vowel freebie

Wow!  So I feel like I haven't posted in a really long time.  I have had some personal things come up and just haven't had the time to or energy to do much.  I missed so much, but feel that it was good timing!  There are so many amazing Dr. Seuss activities that you all have made and I don't get to do much of that stuff so I am glad that me going MIA was during this time. I would be so sad to have to pass up so many great ideas!  But I am back and trying to catch up on everyone's amazing posts! 

So as a little welcome back to blogland, I made a long vowel freebie that is played like uno.  Hope you like it!  You can download it here.

This week I am doing a presentation for the teachers on new behavior strategies so I'll let you know how that goes!  Hope everyone has a good week!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


As I have mentioned before, we are currently in the works to update our behavior program at school and so I have been scouring the blogland and pinterest for ideas.  I am leading a workshop next Thursday to give teachers some strategies to try out in their rooms as well as discuss our plan for next year.  I have been creating a presentation as well some example materials that teachers can use so it has been very busy.  I just finished a reward menu that I am going to hang in my room.  I am hoping to send it to snapfish and create it into a larger poster.  I am planning to do an ocean theme next year and am very pleased with how it turned out. 

I am planning to use the website that allows to me digitally give and take away points for each of my students.  As they accumulate points, they can turn them in for one of the rewards.  The rewards I can give is limited due to the lack of time I have each student, but I think this is a pretty good list.

What behavior programs do you use?  What are your students' favorite "rewards"?

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Another Money Game Freebie

I am just so excited that today is Sunday... because tomorrow is Monday and we're off!!!!!!  It is been a nice relaxing weekend.  Cleaned the house and went to dinner with some friends last night, and watching movies and working on some school work today.  Love it! 

I am just baffled at the response I got from the the game Chilly Change that I created and posted.  Thank you all so much, I am glad that you found it cute and useful.  So after the huge response I got from that, I thought I'd create another one for St. Patricks Day.  My kids loved chilly change and did a really great job with it.  This new game, Searching for Gold, is a game that students collect actual coins and count up the total at the end.  This will require them to count a larger number of coins but not go over a dollar.  I hope that you find this one just as helpful as the last!

You can download it here but if you do, please leave a comment, follow my blog (if you don't already), and let me know what you think!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

St. Patricks Place Value Freebie

Wow... What a week it has been!  I have been an emotional rollercoaster but sometimes that just happens.  But enough of that... Today was kinda a wash for teaching but man did I get some stuff done.  Our kiddos grades K-5 went to Children's Theatre and saw Pinnochio and our 8th graders went to a Holocaust museum so needlesss to say... my groups were almost all cancelled.  I saw 1 group today and it went quickly.  I took advantage of this empty day and I reorganized all of my worksheets.  I took them out of binders (because it just wasn't working) and put them into files in my filing cabinet.  I cleaned a bit, organized some comprehension activities so that I can just pull them and teach it, and I started on my behavior presentation that I am giving at the beginning of March!  What a productive day.  Don't you just love when you can get stuff done.  I have gotten 3 new kids this week and so I need to get their paperwork done, but Ill do that this weekend...

Now for the freebie... I am putting together some St. Patricks day activities with some clipart I got from Just So Scrappy (Don't you just love their stuff!).  This is a place value activity.  I have a kiddo that really struggles with this concept.  I have a few activities that have the word form written in order and she has caught onto the simplicity/trick of that.  So I made this one with the place value digits listed out of order to try and expand her thinking and push her a bit harder.  It is a matching game (I need to expand my game types... any suggestions?) and it also contains a worksheet.  Hope you enjoy it!  You can Download it here, all I ask is that you leave me a comment letting me know how you liked it.  Do your kiddos struggle with place value?  How do you plan to use it? 

Have a good night everyone!  Tomorrow is Friday and we're off Monday!  YAY long weekend!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

List of What I Love

The Hubs and I are not big on celebrating Valentines day so after working, tutoring, and taking the pup to the vet, I thought I would do a post listing a few of the things I love right now!

1st. and foremost... My family!  They are the best and I am so lucky to have them!  Especially the Hubs, he is so good at keeping me grounded and helping me to be my best!  Just love him!

2nd.  Teaching Blogs!  I really love posting, making activities to share, reading about your great ideas and implementing them!
3rd.  My cute little puppy Charlie.  He is just the cutest little thing even though he can be quite the troublemaker. 

Yes, that is him, standing on the coffee table, no he shouldn't be up there!

4th.  I am obsessed with cooking and baking and finding new recipes to shake it up!  However, I have an overabundance of cookbooks, magazines, and don't even get me started on pinterest board....  This website lets me upload all my recipes and favorite meals.  I can do a weekly meal plan and add all of the ingredients to a shopping list in one click!  It also includes nutritional info which is helping with the diet.  Oh I just love it!! O and it can be sent to my phone through an app or Onenote!

5th. You may have read previously that I am in the works of re-doing our schools behavior program and trying to find ideas to use.  I found this website from the RTI Guy's newsletter and I love it!  I actually just started using it with my kids yesterday but it is fantastic.  Its a point system online with avatars.  Points can be added or taken away and you can track each students points in a "behavior report card" which is great for RTI data.  I also like that you can share classes so it's great for support teachers, and special teachers!  you should definitely check it out!

6th. The new show this season, New Girl on FOX with Zoey Deschanel.  She is so funny and I just love to watch that show each week.  It is definitely my favorite right now!

7th.  I always thought using free clipart was good enough for my activities, and it still is in some aspects, but man I just really love using this cute stuff and I think it makes it so much better!

8th. My Crockpot... I am very much a chicken, casserole, pasta, mexican cooker.  But recently I have been branching out and finding new things to make and thanks to my crockpot, I am finding so much!

9th. Cupcakes!!!!!  Anyone who knows me knows I love baking and I especially love baking cupcakes.  I frequently make them for birthdays, showers, holidays, etc. and would love to make it a side business!  YumYumYum!

10th. Ikea!  The Hubs and I are getting ready to redo our basement and turn it into a double office/craft area.  Ikea is going to be quite the supporter in this remodel!

What are the things you love?

Monday, February 13, 2012

An Award for Little 'Ole Me? And a Telling Time Freebie...

First I would like to give you a freebie!  I just love giving freebies and hearing from you all how you like them and how you plan to use them!  This one is another matching game for telling time to the 5 minutes.  Match up the tiger with his matching clock! 
You can download it here; hope you like it!

Now for some really exciting news, I received an award!  I am so shocked and excited and thank you so much Jen for giving it to me!  I love looking each day and seeing everyone's ideas and have really enjoyed sharing my own so being awarded this just makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside!   

The Liebster award is given to blogs with less than 200 followers. Because I've been given the award, I need to find 5 blogs to give it to. I'm excited to give it to 5 new blogs that I'm already following.  I love each of these blogs and highly suggest you follow them, if you don't already!

Sarah at
Fun in Title Math
Dawn at The Teaching Resource Resort
Ms. O'Brien at The Ramblings of a 5th Grade Teacher
Ms. Ice at 3rd Grade Sprinkles
Bri at The Art of Teaching: A Kindergarten Blog

Sunday, February 12, 2012

You know you're a teacher when... & Chilly Change Freebie

Since the Hubs is working today, I figured I would take the time to work on some more activities.  I dowloaded some clipart (thanks Hadar for the great tip!)

Being a special ed teacher, I focus on the essential skills; the ones that all other skills build on and the ones people need in day to day life (money, time, computation facts, basic reading skills, writing sentences, etc.)  I have a group of 4th graders that I work with and they are just not getting the concept of money.  Therefore I have been making tons of money activities so that I can change it up and keep them interested.  Here is the money game I made today and I think it turned out too cute if I do say so myself!  Feel free to download it here but please leave me a comment and let me know what you think if you do! 

I am also linking up with Kindergarten Lifestyle on You Know You're a Teacher When...  I just love this!  It is so true that there are many things that only those who are teachers and maybe even those who are married to teachers know and understand.  I have loved reading all of your "teacher knowledge" and thought I would share mine as well!

Have a great rest of the weekend!


Saturday, February 11, 2012

Design Question PLEASE HELP!

This weekend, 2 of my sisters are staying at the house while my parents are out of town visiting the other at college.  So while one plays with the dog and the other plays XBox with the Hubs, I thought I'd ask a quick question.  I am finally starting to use powerpoint to make my activities (you all are right, it is so much better!!!) But I can't seem to figure out how to get such cute backgrounds.  How do you all amazing bloggers do it?  Suggestions would be greatly appreciated and once I figure it out, there will be plenty of freebies for you!  Thanks a ton in advance!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Thank you to all of you!

First of all... I hope this isn't too deep for any of you but I really wanted to post about this!  Every now and then, we all have those moments where we need some seriousness, and after this I promise I'll get back to my fun-lovin self! 

All of you are absolutely amazing and I hope that as I become more comfortable and accustomed to the teaching blog world, I can be half as good as ya'll!  You all inspire me to be better and each day I feel myself trying to find ways to improve and do more fun things. 

I'll be honest, this teaching setting isn't my first choice and I would love to get into a typical classroom setting (1st or 2nd are my favorite!) but for now I am just trying to do my best.  I see students once maybe twice a week for intervention and I honestly feel that just isn't enough for a lot of these kiddos.  I felt that the random pull out and lack of time I had with each student didn't really mean much or do much, but now I find myself trying to find ways to make it more functional and better for the students and myself!  I love to teach and I am so glad that I am finding ways to progress and do better in this setting so thank you!!  You all have been that little push I needed!!

I am already thinking of some great ways to improve next year and am in the process to try and increase my time at the school or change scheduling to provide an appropriate amount of time for these kiddos!  I can't wait to see what the next few years have in store for me and my career and for now I am thankful that I have ya'll as a support system!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Currently February

So the germ kiddos finally reached me... I have been home sick the last 2 days.  Thankfully feeling a bit better today and hoping to make it back into school tomorrow... I hate trying to catch back up! 

So with the lack of energy I am having today, I will leave you with a Currently: February from Farley (she's kinda awesome isn't she?!?!)  Go here to link up too!  Have a great rest of the week!

Monday, February 6, 2012

RTI for Behavior and an Intervention FREEBIE

Our little tiny private school is starting to see quite the change in population.  We are seeing an increased number of students that are struggling with both reading and math and are not being successful in the typical classroom.  So with that said, I suggested that we look into Response to Intervention.  I went to a seminar, did some online training, read lots of articles and books and talked with other schools that use it.  I am excited to say that after sharing all the information I have learned and presenting about it to the other teachers, we are moving forward with the process!  I know it's going to be quite a bit of work but I am so excited to see us do something proactive to help these kiddos improve and get the support they need!

I recently taught the other teachers I work with about RTI; the basics, what it can look like at our school, and gave some sample interventions.  This was a very nerve-wracking thing for me to do and I am glad that it is over!!  With that said though, I think it went really well and a lot of the teachers seemed to jump on board and get a good basic understanding of RTI.

As a school, we have decided to focus on RTI for behavior first so we are revamping our tier 1 (positive behavior support system), providing some in class interventions for students and finding some more intensive supports as well.  I went to a seminar on RTI for behavior done by Amie Dean who is fantastic by the way (she is who we are getting a lot of our ideas from)! You can see her Workshop information here!  I will leave you tonight with a nonverbal behavior intervention that she teaches about.

Correction Cards
 - print these cards, cut them out, and laminate

This is an intervention idea from Amie Dean and I took it and made it my own.  It is a nonverbal strategy to help redirect kids and give them a "warning" for a particular behavior.  For example... if a student it talking out /over you, you set a correction card on their desk that says "please stop talking."  The idea is that you can give that kid the warning they need and not have to stop your lesson to correct them or call them out and embarass them in front of the class.  I thought it was a great idea and I am excited to try them out in my class!! I'll let ya know how they work!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

What I Love Linky Party

It has been quite a busy yet fun and exciting weekend!  Friday was our Spaghetti Dinner at school!  One of my parents was in charge of it and it was so awesome to see her doing something she is fantastic at and loved!  I think we raised lots of money and we had a fantastic turn out!!!  Saturday, I had a nice relaxing day with my sister-in-law...much needed...  We went and got manicures and then went to Panera and sat and talked for over 2 hours!  It was so great!  Then Saturday night the Hubs and I had our planned monthly date night!  We went to SoHo (hibachi) for dinner and then went and saw Lewis Black downtown.  It was a great night out and we had a lot of fun!  Then today, I made some yummy fruit salsa for super bowl and then met my mom and my grandma for lunch and to go see One for the Money.  We all read all of Janet Evanovich's books and so we were so excited to go see it! I closed out the weekend celebrating my nephew's 10th birthday, my in-laws 40th anniversary and the super bowl.

Whew, I am pooped!!  So I will leave you tonight with a linky party being hosted by FunkyFirstGradeFun  With Valentines Day a-comin.. why not talk about things we love!?!?!  Link up and join in the fun!

Have a great night everyone!!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

I scream You Scream We All Scream for Ice Cream FREEBIE!!

So I don't know if it is the strange warmer weather we are having or what but I have found myself thinking summer already!  Flip flops, really having some time to organize the classroom, create and gather new materials, flip flops, vacation, pool time, a break, and did I mention flip flops??....  

Anywho...with that in mind, I made a new Nonsense Word/CVC word activity with ice cream in mind!!!  Who doesn't love ice cream??  I have quite the rambuncious 1st grade group this year so I feel myself needing a ton of different activities just to keep their interest. 

Feel free to download and use!!  All I ask is that you leave me a comment and let me know how you liked it!

Come back soon!!! We are currently in the works of revamping our behavior program at school (I am in charge of it... eek...) and so I will be posting about that soon!