## Wednesday, November 30, 2011

### Battlin' It Out!: A Simple and Sporty Writing Activity

During writing!  That's right.  Today we read the book Shark vs. Train
Such a funny and creative way to compare and contrast two objects!

Before reading the book, we predicted who would win.  The vote was split 50-50!  Throughout the book, the setting continuously changes.  This would help one of the characters win and hinder the other, causing them to lose.  Hilarious!  After reading the book, we created a chart displaying who won during each situation/setting.  Who won?!  See for yourself below!
The kids were so excited about the book that they wanted to create their own stories!  I can't wait for them to finish up so I can share them with you!  Fun times!  Happy Wednesday!

## Tuesday, November 29, 2011

### Division...Bring It!

We're in the midst of multiplication and division madness in my classroom!  To help the kids understand the termonology associated with a division problem, I created this anchor chart.
I also revamped an activity I posted last year.  I wanted my kids to have more practice with division problems while being held accountable for the termonology as well.  So I took a one page activity and turned it into a seven page center!  You can click the picture below to check it out at my TpT store.

## Monday, November 28, 2011

### I Need More Cowbell!

I felt like Christopher Walken today when I was teaching this writing minilesson.  :)  I just needed better adjectives!  No more "boring, blah, make me wanna take a nap" words...I need more FLAVOR!!!

Here are the five sentences I wrote for my kids.  Then we used a thesaurus and their genius little minds to come up with several alternatives that really packed a punch!
We also discussed the differences and similiarities of the thesaurus and the dictionary.  With more practice, I hope the kids will:

1.  become better writers, and
2.  become more efficient at using the tools and resources that are available.

Now, give me more COWBELL!  :)  Happy Monday, y'all!

## Friday, November 25, 2011

### Black Friday/Weekend Sale!

I didn't go shopping last night or early this morning, but will definitely be shopping online!  It's less hassle and I don't even have to get out of my pj's.  :)  To celebrate all of my own shopping, I'm putting everything in my TpT store and my TN store 20% off from today until Monday!  And TpT adding an extra 10% off when you use this code Monday:  CMS28!!!  Hopefully some of the stores with my wishlist items are doing the same!

Hope everyone enjoys a nice, relaxing weekend before going back to work Monday!

## Tuesday, November 22, 2011

### A little bit of sunshine to start your day!

I am honored and blessed that Charity from the OC Blog has awarded my blog with the Sunshine Award!  Thank you so much, Charity!

Here are the rules for accepting this award:

1. Thank the person who gave this award and write a post about it.
2. Answer the following questions below.
3. And pass the award to 10-12 fabulous bloggers, link their blogs, and let them know you awarded them.

So, here are my answers to the questions:

1. Favorite Color?  red and tan
2. Favorite animal?  dog
3. Favorite number?  12
4. Favorite drink?  Diet Dr. Pepper and Chardonnay, but not at the same time  :)
6. Your passion?  blogging, networking with other teachers, sharing ideas and activities with other teachers (work smarter, not harder!!!)
7. Giving or getting presents?  I would rather give presents.  I love that special feeling when someone truly enjoys what you gave them and how much it means to them.
8. Favorite day?  Hmmmm...that's a tough one.  Any day where I get to hang out with my family and friends.  Free time is precious, and quality time with my loved ones is priceless.

And now the hard part...choosing a select few to pass the award on to.  I want to give it to about 100 blogs!

1.  Ginger Snaps
2.  Empowering Little Learners
3.  Nyla's Crafty Teaching
4.  Relentlessly Fun, Deceptively Educational
5.  Classroom Freebies
6.  Teacher Bits and Bobs
7.  Ucreate with Kids
8.  Ashleigh's Education Journey
9.  Thoughts of a Third Grade Teacher
10.  Yearn to Learn
﻿
Congrats, you guys!!!  Please know that there are HUNDREDS of great teacher blogs I follow!  Check out my "FAB Blogs" tab to check them all out!

I hope everyone enjoys their time off from work and relaxes with family and friends!

### FREEBIES - Math and Literacy Centers!

I thought I could wait and do this each day this week...but I can't!  I'm too excited!  I want you to go ahead and have these just in case you can get them ready to use soon!  :)

When we come back from Thanksgiving break, we'll be discussing angles and geometry.  We're also going to review rhyming words with different spelling patterns.  You can snag ALL THREE centers by clicking the pictures below!  And please, if you're not a follower already, become one!  Enjoy and Happy Thanksgiving!

## Monday, November 21, 2011

### Math Fun Packs...and a GIVEAWAY!

To celebrate the cooler weather (off and on here in GA), I made these math fun packs.  One is for autumn and the other is for winter.  Each pack includes centers for fact families, flashcards, word problems, money, place value, and even/odd numbers.  It's five centers/activities all in one pack!

Autumn Math Fun Pack

Winter Math Fun Pack
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The first five people to comment on this post will receive both packs FREE!  Please include your email when you comment!  :)  And if you happen to miss this...there will be SEVERAL more freebies (permanent ones!) coming throughout the week!

## Sunday, November 20, 2011

I'm thankful for my loving and supportive family members and friends.  While I'm very independent in some areas of my life, it has been crucial to have this support system during the difficult and trying times.  My parents, my husband, several close friends, and the amazing grace of God have helped me get to where I am today.  I am truly blessed.

Now it's your turn!  Link up with What The Teacher Wants by clicking on the picture below!

## Saturday, November 19, 2011

### Pocket Chart Math Center!

Or it could be used for morning work or during Calendar time!  It was actually Really Good Stuff's TGIF special yesterday.  I saw it this morning and my mind went NUTS with all the possibilities!
I would definitely use this as a Math center!  Not only does this pocket chart come with all the activity cards and craft sticks, it comes with a handy dandy activity guide WITH REPRODUCIBLES!!!  I downloaded it directly from the site...for FREE!  It covers everything from story problems to place value!

And no, I'm not getting paid for this.  I think the product is just that awesome!  Click the pic above to see more details!

## Friday, November 18, 2011

### "Eat More ....

anything besides turkey!"  This has been our writing/Thanksgiving activity for the past couple days.  The kids LOVED it!  The ladies at Dishing It Out gave me the idea.

I searched online for a turkey outline that fit our topic and THIS ONE hit the nail on the head!  So we got our supplies out and were ready for action!
First, we brainstormed other foods that people could eat instead of turkey.  The kids were coming up with some really fabulous ideas!  Then, they decorate their turkeys.  They cut them out and glued them to a large piece of construction paper.  Next, they took a piece of printer paper and used it to write the names and draw illustrations of their different foods.  Finally, the students cut out and glued the labels/illustrations around the turkey.

Here are a few of the final products:
They cracked me up!  Hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving with family and friends!  And remember, you don't HAVE to eat turkey!  ;o)

## Thursday, November 17, 2011

### Prefix-Suffix Roundup! (FREEBIE 'til Friday!)

We've been covering prefixes and suffixes.  I created this center to help reinforce everything else we've done so far.  There are 12 prefix cards, 12 suffix cards, and a recording sheet.  The students also have to match the definitions with the correct word.  And it's all yours for FREE until tomorrow night!!!  Click the picture below to snag it!  :)  After Friday, the link will be changed to my TpT store

## Wednesday, November 16, 2011

### Division is Dino-mite!

The kids are doing an amazing job relating multiplication to division!  It's all starting to click and they taking off like rockets!  I created this center to help them reinforce the skill of repeated subtraction.  It's very similar to my Multiplication Madness game...just with division.  :)  Click the picture below to check it out at my TpT store.
And stay tuned for a special FREEBIE post tomorrow!  ;o)

## Tuesday, November 15, 2011

### D-O-N-E!

I just got home from my very last class for my Specialist degree!  We did our group presentation and I turned in my two papers and I'm DONE!!!  Then I came home to these beautiful flowers from the hubby!

Oh, the relief!  Now for Dec. 10th...GRADUATION!
(Can you tell I'm a little excited?!?!)

## Monday, November 14, 2011

### Franklin D. Roosevelt Activity Pack

Oh, friends!  We haven't covered FDR yet, but I'm trying to be on the ball and have it ready for when we do.  :)  If you want, click on the pic below and you can check out the packet at my TpT store.  It includes vocabulary activities, a timeline, an informational scavenger hunt, and a writing activity.

## Sunday, November 13, 2011

### Fish! Sticks :)

Not the food, the book!  Have you heard of it?  I just finished reading it for a grad school project (in my Leadership class) and my mind is racing!  It's a super-quick read (120 pages) that really digs down to the core of the leadership and vision of an organization.  I am truly inspired by this book!  After going through certain personal and professional situations, a book like this is sort of like therapy.  Ok...let me stop!  I don't want to spoil it for you.

## Friday, November 11, 2011

### Ahoy, me Hearties! It's the Friday FREEBIE!!!

This is an addition match-up center that can be used during math centers!  Print it on cardstock, laminate, and bag it up!  Click the picture below to snag it from my TpT store.  Hope everyone has an amazing weekend!!!

Be sure to stop by TBA and check out the other freebies!

## Thursday, November 10, 2011

### How-to/Informational Writing

This week we've been focusing on "how-to" and "informational" writing.  We started Monday by telling someone how to play a game.  I chose War.  After writing it all down, my kids were amazed!
Tuesday we discussed how to make a certain food or drink (like chocolate milk...nothing crazy!)  I chose my favorite home recipe "Spicy Sausage Pepper Stew!"  The kids were frantically copying down the recipe, begging me to bring some in.  I told it's just a tad too hot for their little tummies!
Wednesday we worked on informational stories about individuals.  I reminded them about our historical figure books that tell so many interesting facts about individuals.  Then I modeled a story about my husband.
There was such a cute moment afterward...the kids started interviewing each other and filling in their webs with facts about their classmates!  Oh, the joy of that moment cannot be expressed!  They were SO pumped!

I hope writing is going well in your classroom and with your students!  What is your focus this week during writing?!

## Wednesday, November 9, 2011

### Multiplication/Division Word Problems

I created this center to help my students practice their multiplication and division skills.  The center comes with six problems (in which the students must decide whether to multiply or divide) and a recording sheet to draw pictures and solve the problems.  Click the picture below to snag it from my TpT store.
Enjoy!  Dana﻿

## Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Grammar and language arts can get so stinkin' tricky!  Who knew there were so many different forms of one adjective?!  To help my students work through the process, I created this center to cover comparative and superlative adjectives.  The students will match up all three cards (ex. happy - happier - happiest) and then record their answers on the recording sheet.  There is even a 10-question assessment that can be used after all students have been to the center.  Click the picture below to snag it from my TpT store.

Enjoy!  Dana﻿

## Monday, November 7, 2011

### Daily 5/Literacy Center Organization Linky Party!

Mel at Oh the Places We'll Go is having a linky party completely devoted to Reading and how you organize it!  L-O-V-E!!!

Here are some snip-its from my room:
 Our center chart...gotta keep everything and everybody straight!
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 Center Organizer
﻿﻿﻿
 Extra center storage...they are LOVING the listening center!
﻿﻿
 I put all my centers in baggies...I try to keep pages shorter so you can seal the bag.
﻿﻿
 Part of our leveld classroom library
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 Indvidual book bins...including reading response journals and post-its.
﻿﻿
 Rdg posters reminding them to make connections!
﻿I feel like there is SO much more to show and tell about Reading and organization, but I'd be here all day typing that post!  :)  So now it's your turn!  Head over to Mel's blog and link up with us!

## Sunday, November 6, 2011

I am joining in this linky party to support anyone who has had cancer or known someone who has.  I have a blogging buddy that has it, again.  I know...again.  She is only 33, a wife, and a mother.  Please join with us in this linky party and show your support for Mandy and others who are or have been affected by cancer.

## Saturday, November 5, 2011

### BIG NEWS!!!

I've been added as a TBA author!!!  I'm thrilled and honored!!!  Click the pic below to check out my introductory post:

## Friday, November 4, 2011

### Our Donors Choose Project!

My kids and I have been introduced to one of the coolest educational "toys" ever!!!  The best way to sum it up:  Guided Math Meets Technology!  It's the Math Shark!  My kids tried one out last week and went crazy over it!  It helps them practice several different math skills (addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, fractions, decimals, and percentages) and the difficulty level can be changed depending on the student using it.

Here's a link to the Math Shark if you want more details:

In an attempt to give my students more support and instructional resources, I've signed up for a Donors Choose project.  And it was approved!  I'm asking for eight Math Sharks for my classroom.  Our excitement about this project is out of this world!  If you want to check it out, you can click on the picture below.  And a huge shout-out and thank you to Teresa Brown.  Thanks for getting us started!  :)

## Thursday, November 3, 2011

### FREEBIE Historical Figure Review

I created this activity to help my students review the historical figures we've covered this nine weeks.  We've covered Frederick Douglass, Susan B. Anthony, and Mary McLeod Bethune.  The students had to sort the facts and glue them into the correct category.  We did it today and went GREAT!!!  Click the picture below to snag it for FREE from my TpT store!

## Wednesday, November 2, 2011

### Division Math Center

I made this center to go along with our division unit.  My kids are doing pretty good with relating multiplication and division within a fact family.  But I wanted to give them another strategy.  One of the strategies we use is repeated subtraction.  Some have really caught on while others are still struggling.  Click the picture below to check it out.  Hopefully it will be useful to you and your kids!  :)

## Tuesday, November 1, 2011

### Self-Assessment...

for grad school!  Today's the day that my massive Ed Specialist portfolio is due!  This 143-page notebook has been keeping me busy for the past few days.  Now it's time to get back to blogging and making activities for my kiddos!
Here's a peek inside my portfolio:

WOOHOO - I'm finished!  22 days until I graduate!!!

Have you ever had to do a portfolio like this?  For work or grad school?