Sunday, November 11, 2012

The year is flying by! And...FREEBIEs!

 I can't believe that Thanksgiving will soon be here!  This year has been flying by and I have not been blogging much:(  I hope to change that...  For all of my followers, I have just posted a freebie in my TPT store for students to practice writing about reading with Scholastic News (could be used with other weekly papers as well).  It is in MS Word format so you can adapt it to fit the needs of your class:)  You can download it here.  I also have my grocery shopping math center available for free here.  My store has a lot of other free items available so please come and take a look!  I have added a few things to my TPT store available for purchase, including my football themed math center game which enables students to practice a variety of skills including:
-3 Addend Addition
-2-D & 3-D Shapes
-Telling Time to the hour
-Telling Time to the ½ hour
-Telling Time to the quarter hour
-Telling Time to 5 minutes
-Blank sheet for your own skill
You can purchase it here.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Back to School (for me that is) & a TPT SALE Pt. II & GIVEAWAY

I spent a good amount of time today getting my classroom ready.  I decided yesterday, for the 1st time in 7 years to change my classroom theme!  Although I love the ocean/beach theme, and will do it again for sure, it was time for a change.  I will be having some of the same students from last year, so I think that they will appreciate the change too.  So...I am changing to a sports themed room!  I figure that with the Olympics just finishing up, this will be perfect.  I have a confession though...I will sneak in as much Sparty as possible (a very proud MSU alum here!!!).  So I bought some green and white stuff to go all around the room.  I'll post pictures once it is all up:)
Sparty and I when we were very fortunate to have him visit our school for March is Reading Month:)

I will be joining in the TPT back to school sale on the 12th and 13th with having my entire store be 20%! 

I hope that you can come and find something that will make your life a little easier!  I am also having a give-away here!  I will be giving and 2 items of your choice from my store to the 1st two people who comment below.  Make sure that you include your e-mail, and which two items from my store that you would like.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Back to School (for me that is) & a TPT SALE

This past week I was in my classroom.  My school normally has summer day camp so normally we are unable to get into our classrooms until a few days before.  This year we did not, and as I finished summer school I wanted to take my things back there, rather than in my has enough other school things there.  I will be going back next week for a day or two, but want to enjoy summer vacation too:)

Now that that is over, I am taking my first grad class in a few years to renew my teaching certificate next year.  I am taking my class on-line from Connecting Link.  I am really looking forward to it as it is a math class and I love teaching math!  Has anyone out there taken a class from them?  Two of my friends have in the past and recommended it.

As I am starting this class, I decided to throw a sale at my Teachers Pay Teachers storeAll of my math related materials will be 20% off through Monday!  This includes my brand new Primary Grades Math Reference Guide.  This reference guide provides pages of math references your primary grades students can use. You can print the entire reference guide and make a copy for each student, or you can use individual pages as needed for your grade/unit. Reference guides can be kept in math folders or math notebooks. You could also print them out to use as anchor charts during a unit of study.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Robert McCloskey Lapbook

Yesterday was my last day of school!  Although I do love my job, I am very much looking forward to summer vacation!  It won't be a complete vacation as I am supposed to take 2 classes to renew my certificate, and I am teaching summer school.  But, at only 12 mornings of teaching, that is not too bad:)

We finished our Robert McCloskey (one of my favorite children's authors) author study lapbooks the day before school ended.  In my "teacher report card," multiple students wrote that it was their favorite activity from this year.  If you are new to "lapbooking," I made an introduction to it packet on Teachers Pay Teachers.  This project was perfect for the end of the year.  Before the project started, I went to "Michael's" and bought some scrapbooking supplies that went along with the themes/colors of the books.  I also went and printed out color images of things (ex. donuts for Homer Price).  Students had been earning classroom store money with their behavior (very helpful at the end of the year).  They came and "shopped" at the store to but things for their books.  I think that the next time that I do this, I will just print things and save myself a little money.

My book is somewhat plain so that the kids got the stickers and such.  The students loved it because they were able to be very creative with fun scissors, and they were able to draw things that they wanted that went with the books.

Here is what mine looked like:
This is the cover
The first page includes pictures of Robert McCloskey and his family, as well as some of his sketches
The left side is pictures of the covers of his books.  The right is a page about Lentil.  I copied one illustration from each book for each book's page in the project.
These pages are about Make Way for Duckings.  The flaps on the left flip open for the children to write inside of.  The right includes a pocket to hold the ducklings (students wrote their names on them and can practice ABC order/-ack word family)
The left side was for Homer Price.  The right side contains multiple things for Blueberries for Sal.
We graphed our favorite foods containing blueberries on the left.  The right side contains a filmstrip to draw the beginning, middle, and end of Centerbrug Tales.
The left side contains tooth trivia cards, and dental dominoes.  The right side we wrote tips for keeping your teeth healthy.
The way we glues it, students were able to flip it and draw healthy foods on the tooth.
Since Time of Wonder contains a strong storm, we learned about hurricanes.
Since Burt Dow Deepwater Man is about a whale, students retold the story on the page on the left.  They then made a band-aid picture on the right.  They were very creative!
I think that the hardest page for everyone was choosing their favorite Robert McCloskey book and writing about why it was their favorite.  :)
Some useful books (besides the children's books themselves):
purchase here
available on Amazon
I also bought another old guide used but I don't see it on Amazon anymore and the book is at school.  Does anyone else "lapbook" out there?

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Southeast Michigan Teacher Meetup/End of School Year

I tried to plan a meetup about a month back and had not much luck.  The good news is, there is one being planned:)  I am not the planner though.  You can read more about the Northville meetup here.

I am so excited to meet with other teachers (besides those in my district)!

It is hard to believe that there are only 2.5 more days to go in this school year!  We have been having a lot of fun the last few weeks!

Yesterday was beach reading day where we went outside to do "read to self" and "read to someone."   The students enjoyed bringing their towels to do so.

Today we were fortunate to visit the local public library which is down the street from our school.  The kids really enjoyed it I think as many did not seem to know about it.  I found it interesting as it is a public library that receives no public funding.  They were so sweet there and even sent every teacher (we went in 2 classes at a time) home with a bag of several books for the classroom.

Tomorrow will be "pajama/movie day."  We read the book Padington Bear earlier this year and the kids really liked it.  So, I bought the dvd set of the old TV show and the kids are looking forward to that.  I also bought the 30th Anniversary Edition of Schoolhouse Rock.

Thursday will be "game day" where students are able to bring in their favorite board/card games from home.  I remind them that if it is a truly special game it should be left at home.

We've also been working on finishing up our Robert McCloskey lapbook.  I hope to post pictures of that soon.

2.5 more day...I can do it, I can do it!  :)

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Teachers Pay Teachers Sale

I am participating in the Teachers Pay Teachers 3 Day Sale (today through the 9th) by selling my items for 20% off!  I also have several free items, so even if you don't want to spend money come and check it out!  Just click on the "sale" link to the left to view my store.

Also, in case you were not aware, this is a excellent day for teachers, as many teachers are posting some of their wonderful items for free for today only.  For K-2, you can go to here, and grades 3-5 here.  I hope that you find something helpful!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Southeast Michigan Teacher Meetup

Attention Michigan teachers...I am planning a Southeast Michigan teacher meetup.  It will be on Sunday, May 20th at 3:00 in Troy.  If you are interested in joining and meeting fellow Michigan teachers, please send me an e-mail to: clossell @ (no spaces).

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Split Level Class Linky Party

Christina Bainbridge is having a linky party to share tips for teachers who have several grades together in one room so I figured that I would join. I am finishing my 2nd time of teaching a 1st/2nd split class.  My first split was split evenly 11-11, but this year it is 9-13 so it is a little different.  I love teaching a split as I am capped at 22 students whereas I may have up to 29 in a straight 1st grade, and 32 in a straight 2nd grade.  So here is how I manage things...

Morning Work: Each grade level has their own corresponding daily math practice sheet to do.  I only copy Monday-Thursday, as they each have their own day to "book shop" for their books for the week.  We also have library right away on Wednesday morning, so Friday is their "catch-up" day for morning math.

Morning Meeting/Calendar: I combine skills appropriate for both grades during calendar time.  You can see my calendar packet here.  I do the 2nd grade "daily oral language" as we do it together as a group I find that it is very manageable.

Daily 5: Students are in flexible groups so this works out well as no matter what grade level a child is in, they are reading at their own reading level.

Word Study: I use individualized spelling words for all of my students.  I may have a 2nd grader who is still mastering 1st grade words, and a 1st grader working on 3rd grad words.  I plan to make something for TPT about how I start and manage this.  I do "making words" with the 1st graders on Monday while the 2nd graders are doing their 2nd grade level word family practice sheet.  I then flip-flop this on Tuesdays with the 2nd graders.

Read Aloud: I do this together.  Right now we are reading Matilda and the kids are loving it.  It was one of my favorite books as a child.  I love read aloud time and so do the kids:)

Writing: I am fortunate in that some of the writing units overlap at least a bit.  Depending on the day/topic, I may give a mini-lesson to the entire class, or give it to one group while the other group works on their writing.  I do have different expectations for each grade that they are aware of while writing.  It is great to see when the 1st graders are aiming to do the 2nd grade expectations too:)

Math: I use a guided math/math workstations approach in my room (even when I don't have a split).  I have 4 flexible groups: two 1st grade and two 2nd grade.  You can read more about how I teach math (which I love) here.

Science/Social Studies: I teach with read aloud partially.  I also teach full lessons.  Depending on what I am doing, I may have the grade that is not working with me work on something at their seats, with a buddy, or do "read to someone" during this time.  Right now, the 1st graders are learning about animals, and the 2nd graders are learning about plants (it's a miracle that they are growing right now as I have by no means a green thumb!).  As a class, we planted several vegetables in a large and clear vase, and everyone has been so excited to see how much they can grow even over a classroom day.  Then everyone (even the 1st graders) planted their own flower seeds.  I figure that planting two years in a row won't hurt them.  :)

Friday, February 3, 2012

I am throwing a sale and having a give away!

I am throwing a sale this weekend at my TPT store!  Please come and check it out as virtually everything will be 20% off through the weekend!  I have many free items as well, so even if you don't want to spend money, please come and check it out!

I am having a February givewaway as well!  The first 3 people to comment on this post with their e-mail address, as well as the name of any item in my store that they would like (under $2.50) will receive it for free!

Hoping for winter in Michigan

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Sending Love to Joplin Linky Party

I am joining the "Love to Joplin Linky Party."  As all if you probably know of the devastation that hit Joplin, Missouri this past year, this is a great opportunity to give to teachers who have lost their classrooms in the devastating tornado that hit their town this past year.  I sent them a lot of my TpT store items for them to use in their classrooms.  I hope that you can join this linky party too!  See the link for more information!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Wishing for Snow Giveaway & Sale

Me skiing last year

I am enjoying my last few days of my winter break.  Although, looking outside in SE Michigan, you would never know it with the green grass and blue sky!  I have taken some time to make some "snow" and "ski" themed items for the classroom.  This includes multiple math and literacy games/activities/skill sheets ranging from K-3rd grade.  You can view them at my TpT store here.

As I sit here wishing for the snow to start falling (we have not had enough snow to cover the grass yet this year) so that I can possibly go skiing, I decided to do 2 things: have a sale (good through the end of the day today) on my TpT items, and to do a GIVEAWAY!  This will be my first giveaway.  I am offering a single snow/ski themed activity (not the bundle) to the first 3 people who comment with their: e-mail, and which snow/ski themed item that they would like.  Check out my store because there are about a 20 items to choose from for this giveaway!

Wishing for Snow in Michigan

P.S. My New Year's resolution is to be better about adding to my blog:)