Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Liebster Blog Award

The Liebster Award is for new blogs with less than 200 followers. 

I was nominated for the Liebster Award, YEA!  I feel so special & loved, thanks!  Plus it’s a great way to link up with other bloggers.
   Here are the Liebster Blog Rules:

1. You must post 11 random things about yourself.
2. Answer the questions that the nominator set for you.
3. Create 11 questions for the people you nominate.
4. Choose 11 other blogs with fewer than 200 followers to nominate and link them in your post.
5. You cannot “tag back” the other blog, but leave a comment on this post with the URL of your Liebster post so I can learn more about you & see your nominations.

11 Random things
1.   Love all dorky “teacher-y” things
2.  Football fanatic
3.  Will often crank up the tunes at home and dance like there’s no tomorrow.
4. Candy is my vice-and I’m not giving it up anytime soon!
5.  Anything pertaining to art I enjoy (just can’t find much time for)
6. Started a health and fitness after school program, which I ran for 3 years
7. Bummed I can’t talk the hubby into having child #2 L
8.  Every time my son says “Guess what?!”  I secretly want to say “chicken but”
9. Like to gaze at the stars in the morning or at night
10.          Have daily trips to the beach (in the summer mostly) without bringing sand back in the car down to a science!
11.  Wish I was going to Miami in January to watch the Crimson Tide Roll right over Norte Dame, will have to settle for my couch with the fam.

Mrs. Seiber's blog questions:
1.  What is your classroom pet peeve? Talking out! Talking out, talking out  
2.  Do you have pets? 13 year old red Lab “Buddy” (she’s like a child to us)
3.  Do you have kids (if yes, how old and how many)? Yes, a son 4 years old (and first year at school with mommmy)

4.  What is the last “grown up” book you read? Grown up book? Besides all the What to expect when expecting, etc I would have to say  Bergdorf Blondes, or one of Sophie Consela’s books.

5.  How long have you been blogging? Two years, just really got into the blogging last year.
6.  Where do you live? Beautiful Charleston, SC
7.  Where were you on 9/11/01? Working at Leighton Head Start in rural North Alabama (went to church that afternoon to keep from the tv, where my parish priest had taped a handwritten note to the door “Mass @ 6pm for World Trade Center tragedy”
8.  What was the best trip you ever took?  London, England
9.  Do you have a tattoo? No, but had my tongue and belly pierced once
10.  If you had to choose another career, what would it be? Lawyer or artist not really considered or wanted anything else besides teaching
11.  What is your ideal Saturday? Yard work & playing with my son while listening to Eli Gold call the game on the Crimson Tide sports network.  Otherwise, watching the game with the Lowcountry Crimson Tide chapter or in the living room in my home J ROLL TIDE ROLL!!!

Here are the questions for the Blogs I've nominated:
1.      What is the best thing about your school?
2.   What is your co-worker pet peeve?
3.   How much time do you spend at home on your “school work”?  Be honest,
4.    What has been your favorite “teachable moment”  (something unplanned that turned into a totally awesome lesson)
5.   How long have you been blogging?
6.    Do you have any kids? If yes, how many & what age?
7.   Where do you live?
8.   Most profound moment in your life?
9.    What is your best organization or classroom management tip or advice for others?
10.  How do you spend your off days?
11.   How do you wish you spent your off days?

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Friday excitement!

Friday was full of excitement-one of our K5 teachers got engaged (or "married" if you asked any of the students from k4-2nd grade)  her fireman boyfriend surprised her and the whole school got to be a part of it.  Sweetest moment ever witnessed!  Our principal came around that morning pulling teachers out in the hall one by one just to say-"We're having a fire drill at 10am, but it's not a real fire drill-Rob's proposing to Sophie.  So, when the ladder truck pulls up you can gather your class up so they can see."  Even the maintenance guys had their camera phones out!

Fall Updates

Wow!  I feel like I fell off the blog-o-sphere for awhile.  For months I've told myself I was going to sit down and blog, but life happened instead!  Do the DEW was a HUGE success   Junior high kids were overheard discussing words they used in the writing, another class asked if they were going to do it every month, and the little ones seemed to be totally engrossed in their writing.  We haven't had a chance to start going through our writing samples gathered, but I think I'm definitely going to push for this to become a monthly activity (not gathering samples but simply the whole do the DEW concept allowing the students to write freely).
  This week I decided to "clip down" for ANY behavioral "bad choices", meaning pretty much no more "talking paragraphs" no warnings just walk over and clip kids down.  It felt harsh but then again we've been in school a few months now and the consent talking out by several needed to be nixed.  That new plan of action coupled with not being able to have a "job" if work wasn't completed, worked wonders!  All my students really gave their all this week and I was able to get so much done it feels great!  Yes, I realize that Thanksgiving is about to hit and I will once again feel like I didn't get half of what I wanted covered!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


Finally!  It seems as though we are all settling into our 2nd grade routines and responsibilities.  We've begun our Phonics Dance & I really think it's going to be a great asset for the children!  Been sick it seems the past month, but somehow things are getting done.  We have a big school-wide writing assessment tomorrow and I am so excited!  We are calling it...                              

                                  Do the

Drop Everything & Write

Saturday, September 1, 2012


covered old desk with contact-plan on painting drawers black at some point

taken before it was fully set up but its still a hot mess-my library area

Wow! Finally have the first full week back under our belts!  Things are so different this year with my little man in K4 now, he has surprisingly been a really big help.  I still have a few things to do in the room and with some of my files, etc but for the most part the room is where I want it to be.  Except for my classroom library, which I've decided is just going to be a thorn in my side till I can get it organized and set up the way I want it.  Until then, I just have to let it go.  I decided to stick with my "rock star" theme and somehow ended up bringing in zebra print! (It went with my turquoise and black color them) Check out some of my pics-

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Setting it up & Personal home media monitoring sheet FREEBIE

So long summer fun in the sun, so long lazy days & timeless schedules!  It's almost time, and the excitment is mounting.  Oddly I am not ready to begin the process of setting up the classroom and what not-it's taken me years to realize my brain does not function well during "set up" time.  I have even drawn maps and planned out on paper only to rearrange once it was actually set up.  At least this time my hubby has stepped up to the plate and really been helpful.  From annoyingly telling me to get in that room while he's off & able to help with our son to coming in and uncovering and helping me arrange some things.  :)  Finally-it only took about  ten years for him to be this supportive in my teaching career (no joke literally about 10 years!).  I am tempted to rid myself of my desk but I need it for the laptop & paperwork stuff.  Other than that I really don't use it.  I have to connect the laptop to the SMARTboard b/c student computer has no sound (hence being the "student" computer) I'm going crazy trying to set up this part of my room, I have another area where I do my small group stuff....wish me look and any tips are greatly appreciated.

   On another subject-I have been meaning to post a Media Time Limit sheet for those with kiddos at home. It has helped me to keep up with how long my son's sat in front of a screen and given him a visual aid as well.  There were too many times I've sat and balanced bank account, paid bills, etc on the computer and fallen into the "sure" for every "Can I watch another Mickey? SuperWhy? Octonots" etc I laminated the sheet and we color in a star with an expo marker-I'll upload a couple I've made so help yourselves!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

What's up with Teaching blog addict site?

For two days now my computer says "possible threat" whenever I try to access Teaching Blog Addict site, anyone else have this problem?

AGAHAHAHHGH! Classroom libraries

Yep I misspelled the title of the post-I can't seem to get my classroom shut down and it's so frustrating!  I've covered and bagged, cleaned and put away....for a week now!  I should be reminding myself that the last work day was just Tuesday-but really was hoping to not take all week.  I finally took my computer down, just have to bag it tidy up my mess I've left and cover class library bookshelves.  Which brings me to my request and outcry for help with CLASSROOM LIBRARIES!!!!!
  This seems to be the one huge thorn in my side for two years running.  It's just my second year in second grade (was in k5 before), and it's my first year in this classroom.  I've arranged and re-arranged and finally have  all other areas of my classroom how I would like them (for the most part).  But no matter how I organize or categorize my books, I feel like the students still aren't able to search as easily as I'd like, not to mention put them back in the matching basket, I think my mix of overly labeled books from k5 and the extra genres and categories are confusing for a second grader.  Next year I'm going to use color codes for reading levels.  I recently obtained a metal shelf that I thought would be great (I even measured the small spaces for baskets-just clearly not very well) None of my baskets work and the ones that fit do not hold that many picture books.

   I originally wanted to move my library area to the corner of the room, and the metal shelving to the side of it can be used to hang some of my cloth world and U.S. maps.  Then I thought maybe I should separate the larger book bins (science, reptiles, birds, animal families, etc. my really large group of books) and have a "class community boxes" basically by themes, then have an area with the chapter books and leveled books,  but I'm hopelessly lost :(  Any thoughts or suggestions would be much appreciated!
As you can see I just began with a pile and then got ready to get my shelves covered.  So I had some kind of progress in a way. ;)

Friday, June 1, 2012

Last Day :(

Well....."Schools out for SUMMER!!" Even so, I am such a dork that I'm a little bummed.  As you near the last few weeks of the school year, your thoughts switch to the new school year.  It's only natural, how and what you'd do differently next year, what you'll do the same that worked well this year, finding new ideas, etc.  By the time you actually shut your room down you've gained so much momentum finishing up file  folder games, or organizational things that you've played with all year-you're bummed its over!  At least I am and this is my theory.  hahahah
  This year my class was full of children that had enormous hearts. So loving and so thoughtful I really will miss this group-time went to fast this year.  One of my students, first thing this morning says "This is the saddest day of the year-the last day of school"  so sweet.
  Of course I will be swinging by this weekend to knock out some covering of bookshelves, etc and finish putting everything away.  My students cleaned their desk inside and out for me (gotta love shaving cream!) I also had a few super duper cleaners help me clean off the shelves (seriously-someone taught these kids some serious cleaning skills!) One boy was explaining to one of my girls how to be sure and wipe the sides and back of the shelves!  So cute, so helpful.  Will miss them all, but can't wait to see them go through school excelling all the way!  :)  They were truly some rockin' stars!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Free Mother's Day Activity Packet

Check out these great writing activities for Mother's Day!  Download them for FREE
TPT Mother's day

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Hello World!

Hello World!  I'm back :)  What a crazy past few weeks I've had.....First, getting back from Spring Break.
Second, had my first full on wreck (truck a total loss)
Third, Testing and its the last few weeks of school (need I say more)
But, at least I'm ok, Gieco is the greatest and is handling everything, son wasn't in the car so all is good :)
Going to the school Bazaar today and hoping to win some cakes and cookies :) Hoping to get back to Blogging and posting some cool stuff.  Yea!!!!!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Where did the time go?

It's my official last day of Spring Bread....Pretty proud of myself for not becoming overwhelmed with anxiety.  :)  All the things I took home to "work on, organize," etc are still untouched.  Yes, I'm one of those that drags everything but the kitchen sink with me in hopes I will accomplish something!  Actually, I did begin the break sketching out my plans for the rest of April.  But that's the only thing I've done!  Well, besides housework.  I did get my child's end of the year teacher gifts 75% finish (which means they'll be completed the last week of school-something I was trying to avoid)  All things consider though, I've had a pretty excellent spring vacation!  Looking forward to seeing my kiddos and the none stop chatter of all their happenings over the break.  :)  Maybe I'll even have a chance this weekend to post some freebies. :)

Monday, April 9, 2012

Meeting the gov!

It's spring break!!! (Hence the lack of blogging, etc)  We went downtown tonight to meet the governor, and all on his own my little boy got so excited (even changed shirts before we left) he could not wait to meet her.

 She was so great so sweet and the owners of the bookstore (Blue Bicycle Bookstore) were very welcoming and easy going.  On a side note-super great books from new to old to collectible!  I snagged up a great local award winning children's book Shackles-LOVE it!

Monday, March 26, 2012


....Need I say more?  I left my portable hard drive at home this morning.  It has EVERYTHING on it.  When I say everything, I mean everything-SMARTboard programs, lesson plans, etc.  Because my laptop for some reason doesn't want to connect to my home printer, (and I am too lazy to fight with it on that) I use my home lap to type my lesson plans, and at the same time I do those I am creating the week's "Welcome Work" and SMARTboard programs.   Obviously it is a MONDAY!!!!  Thank goodness for exceptionally loving parents who are in town as well as scholastic.com's "daily starters"!!!!  Anyone else having this much fun?

Friday, March 23, 2012

Happy accident

 I happened to stubble into a contractions activity that my students LOVED!!!  My original plan was to use the paint color strips 

As you can see however, my three year old cut almost all I had into perfect little rectangles-pretty good cutter that little man!  Otherwise I would probably not have laughed it off so much.  

Anyways, in a last might brain flash I decided to whip out some good old fashion sticky notes....below are my examples but the students filled their pages!  They used the smaller tiny stickies and just went to town on the activity!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

I survived the week!!!

Ok so the week is not over but our practice today went great, and Vanessa and I finished the "music video".  Which, I might add is ROCKIN'!!!!  We were jumping up and down screaming and clapping this afternoon after watching it (which I preached to my students about NOT doing, luckily they were home at the time LOL)
I did not get my test papers sent home however-but we can't have it all.  :)  We were also able to write our thank you letters to the ladies from Water Missions International, and I was so proud of my kiddos they really didn't even need my to edit they did so awesome.  Yea!!!!! Looks like we'll make it two more weeks till spring break.  :)

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

If I can make it through

If I can make it through this week without a complete meltdown I am most certainly doing something extra special for myself!  Performance is Thursday, just finished wrapping up the video yesterday (still have yet to put it all together)  Just practice the paragraph dance on stage today.  Tomorrow is an early out day, and can't plan on putting video together then-no it's not a staff meeting (that we could have gotten out of, maybe) nope its stations of the cross.  Obviously we will be attending that and attempting to let go of all our panicked thoughts on  putting on a great performance as well as getting all our lessons, etc done this week!  Breathe Breathe Breathe.....Anyone else having one of these weeks?

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Check out the Adventure Sharing Book Drive

Adventure Sharing Book Drive Facebook page
Check out what one of my parents has created and organized-so great and such a great charity. Donate today!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The Lovely Blog Award

I was pleasantly surprised and joyous when I learned I received another "Lovely Blog Award" Thanks to Heather's Heart for my first one, and a special thanks to The Honey Bunch for my second. :)  And FINALLY in keeping with the rules and my word-I would like to return the favor and show my love for these LOVELY blogs....

Tickled to Teach
Teaching...My Calling 
Lutton 519 

SMARTBOX and Patty's Day freebie

Yes, I realize that Saturday is St. Patrick's Day so I am CLEARLY late and getting my freebie posted. :(  But hey, it is a FREEBIE! :)  I learned of "smart boxes" from another teacher and conformed them to meet my needs, they're a great go to for early finishers as well as easily prepared holiday and theme activities for Daily 5 or Language Arts centers.  So here's what I did:
create a "directions" page for the box, decorate and label a file folder box (not sure on the actually name for these type of file folders), gather 4-5 student leveled books, and any worksheets that may be needed (I put these in a folder) last but not least if you have and file folder games put them in too!  I've taken some pics of mine, and my St. Patty's Day SMARTbox is free @ my teacher store!  Also, I've uploaded a link to the page for reading comprehension and a great math activity from abcteach.com.  Enjoy!
Reading Comprehension
Pot of Gold

Monday, March 12, 2012


It's report card time, Busy Bodies Day, class performance next Thursday, teacher work day Friday, AND to top it of it.......its a Monday.  Need I say more!
I received another award and I am sooooo returning the goodwill hopefully this evening if not tomorrow.  I feel horrible I haven't gotten to it sooner, and hope to post a freebie on St. Patrick-better late than never.  Who knows maybe someone will need it.  :)


Tickled to Teach: Another Award!!!: Another sweet surprise this weekend when I was awarded the Lovely Blog award from The Journey of a Substitute Teacher , Dragonflies in First...http://tickledtoteach.blogspot.com

Monday, March 5, 2012

Math Notebooks

Math Notebooks

So I've taken it upon myself to try to revamp my math program, etc.  It's been a process to say the least!  I began by revisiting, and review stuff from college and became inspired.  With my inspiration I have devised a game plan-sort of. :)
First step was a "Math Notebook"  I have seen several great post with some awesome ideas.  We had a "Math Journal" an expensive notebook I order at the first of the year and pretty much the whole class has filled theirs up.  Staples had composition notebooks for 50cents this weekend which I bought up with my Staples rewards (so nice to not be out of pocket for things).  I began my "teacher" copy this weekend and designed it much like the older grades with  the Table of Contents, subjects and page numbers (subjects and page #s as we go).  Next year obviously this will be done at the first of the year, but my students seem to lack a good foundation in Math anyways so I decided it wouldn't hurt.  AND they'll be my trial run to see how this works!  We wrote our first page (Numeration) today and it went great!  The kids were amped about it and I really think they'll start getting more out of math with completing their notebooks.  The first few pages are basically their reference pages and after that work will be done in the rest.  I'll try to upload some pics this afternoon.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Ready for Spring!

Wow!  What a whirlwind of a week and looks like this week will be the same!  At least Friday I was able to re-organize my math manipulatives and get the bins labeled, etc.  Granted, this is after my hour and a half writing committee meeting which put me leaving at 5pm!  At least I left happy and hopeful :).  Today my class was so chatty I had to keep telling myself I am in control.  Do not respond.  Yeah, still chatty even with clipping down and having a few sign our "minor disruption acknowledgement".  I guess all and all we did get a lot accomplished due to it being Mardi Gras and out of school yesterday.  Maybe I set my expectations on what I want to accomplish in the classroom for the day too high on days like these.  My determination to keep us on task can sometimes be my downfall.  We ate our king cake, but didn't get to our beads today-Oh, well.  We live and we learn. :)

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Informational reports

Last week went really well in the classroom, informational reports are finally finished!!!! YEA!!!!!  I so swept them under the rug in December when the kids first started their obsession with reports.  Then, before I knew it this big, enormous "Informational Reports" had evolved.  What could I do?  Obviously if the students' interests led into this teachable moment so to speak, I HAD to roll with it.  As time consuming as it was I think it was worth it.  Now I just have to let those that want to "present" their studies do so.  Next week is a short week so hopefully that will work out well for the sharing.
  I have decided to join the "Teachers Pay Teachers".  When I first saw the site last year-I thought no way!  I'm a teacher.  I don't have the money to be buying activities.  But as I search for new ideas on all the wonderfully awesome teacher blogs, I realized what an idiot I was!  :)  My husband is always irritated with me when I'm doing "school" stuff, why not create, share, and buy with the rest of them.  It's genius actually, no more wasting time searching for specific things, just create myself & then maybe the hubby won't complain if I'm making a couple extra bucks.  AND I won't feel guilty buying up some awesome activities when I stumble upon them.  :) Of course, this all depends on my creating an account and what not.  Here's hoping for a relaxing week with extra time on my hands. :)

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Sentence diagramming

I've had some pressure on me from a first grade teacher to diagram sentences.  Well, more like pressure to emphasis sentence diagramming.  So I ask my father (an English professor) for his opinion.  He said with his experience and research it would seem that with emphasis on sentence diagramming all you'll have are really good diagrammers.  hahah!  So true and I wish I had thought of that response.
...he suggest some links this is one of them-

http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Sentence diagramming: no unanimity among users.-a0165912653

Thursday, February 2, 2012

New Webpage

Currently I will be trying to switch our class webpage to a Google page (since weebly contract will be up soon)-stay tuned!

Finishing up with projects and rockin' into February!

We're FINALLY starting to wrap up our non-fiction projects!  I'm so looking forward to the short and crazy month of February.  There's so much going on this month, even the kids were commenting about how many holidays, activities, and happenings there are.  One would think this would be a stressful month, but I so don't see it as such. :)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Happy Thoughts!

I am a optimist through and through.  There is not a silver lining I cannot find.  With that said, even with overwhelming days I stop to remind myself of the positives.  Today I certainly stopped a few times!  At the end of the day when we are lining up for Special area and I am filled with irritation as my class is so LOUD -I realize I can't have it all.  At least they all cleaned up (and from a science experiment at that!) had ROYALs on their desk and were in line, yes even in line.  If you HEARD the class you would not believe they were in any way orderly or half way ready, at least we were ready to go and in a line :)
  Even so I did talk with four or five of them as we headed out the door (quietly finally), and clearly was not optimistic in any way.  One of my boys apologized and I did tell him I forgave him but that he should really try harder tomorrow; Sister Marilyn stopped me and whispered "you should just be happy he apologized" So TRUE!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Room/Class Managment

Having rearranged my students' desk after Christmas TWICE already, I began searching for a solution that would suit everyone's needs.  I found a picture on a teacher's wonderful site- http://thecornerstoneforteachers.com/ she had a lot of pics to look at (which help, somehow the tiny squares I've drawn on paper never look the same with actual desks)  I think this will work much better because I can see everyone and everyone will be able to see me too! :) The flow of the room seems good still so I am so excited! AND I still have extra desks in the back by the Word Wall for "Work on Writing" and "Word Work"  Can't wait to see how it works Tuesday.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Daily Happenings

Just got back from Mass-Fr. Kurby ROCKS!  The children have never been so tuned in to the Mass!  Everyone loved him, we're so excited to have him here with us-looking forward to more Masses like today.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Report Cards

Report Cards go home today, but the quarter ended the last week before Christmas Vacation, so I'm hoping that parents and students haven't forgotten their most recent test grades that went home before the break.  This quarter as I printed the averages out, I was very pleased that the grades seem to have truly reflected the students' work.  Many have either not been turning in "calender questions" or participating and writing their D.O.L. in the mornings, and those students' Language grades were lower.  Last quarter there were none on "Principal's Honor Roll" this quarter we had three, and others who haven't received AB Honor Roll did!  So.....feelin' good about these report cards! :)

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

First Week Back

So far so good, even with just coming back from Christmas vacation my class has been getting a lot accomplished, and I seem to be on top things myself :)
I found a really great website on the Chinese zodiac for kids, we're going to graph our zodiac animals tomorrow and finish writing our characteristics for each too.  Hopefully things will go so well I'll be able to let them do some origami or paper lanterns!
Anyone interested in the website I found, here's the link:

Monday, January 2, 2012

New Year, New Blog to add!

So here I go, creating a new blog (I've visited so many others I just had to have one myself!).  I have no idea how these other teachers do it-find the time to create not just blogs but creative handouts and what not.  I try, but my husband is not too fond of the time it takes away from family time.  After a year and a half in second grade under my belt now, I think I may be able to pull this off ! :)