Monday, February 20, 2012

llllloooooonnnngggg vowels!

Long weekend over! Poo! I am not too upset though... it's a short week!! ha! We've been to:
*Jr. League basketball games (end of season!)
*birthday party (yay-PUMP IT UP!)
*yesterday we didn't get out of pj's (my favorite kind of day!)
*today Addie Mae and I had a girl's day! We went "Target"ing for baby shower goodies and to the grocery. We stopped and had a special treat at Sweet CeCe's- it is a chain of yogurt shops where you choose your own flavors and toppings. Addie and I split one and she picked all the toppings (white chooclate chips, rainbow sprinkles, lucky charms, reeses pieces and gummi worms!)

Now to the school stuff:
We are finally getting to the point in our reading series where we start long vowels that aren't CVCe words. There are so many fun activities you can do with these vowel combos! I have created some fun packets to go with Long A (ai, ay), Long E (ea, ee), and Long O (oa, ow). The packets include:
*Read, write, sort around the room
*Pick a word out of the bucket (whole group or center activity)
*Word Ladders
*Making Words activities

I try to differentiate as much as possible and these activities are differentiating friendly. Each packet has a free download on TpT. Here are some examples of what you will see:

All 3 packets have the same activities but with different vowel sounds and spellings. I will have a long I packet posted soon too! If you are interested in these packets please visit my TPT or TN store!

Check it out!! Have a great short week!


p.s. I forgot to take pics of our Presidential Silhouettes we made the other day but I will post later this week b/c they are A-D-O-R-A-B-L-E!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

I have a winner... and am exhausted!

First off I have a winner for my Eric Carle study.
Congrats to:

Thank you all for participating in my first giveaway! If you didn't win you can always check out my unit at my TpT store! Mrs. Nunley please email me at to collect your prize!

Anyway, I don't know about ya'll but V-Day is exhausting! We had an ice cream sundae party (which was delicious) and the kids were crazy all day! I am just so glad it is over!! LOL
My hubby got me a Nook- which my 6 year old is playing now...ha! Forgot to put meat out for dinner--hoping we can squeeze into outback for some deliciousness! Hope your day was a fun as mine!


Sunday, February 12, 2012

I'm It!

A couple weeks ago I was tagged in this game and I sort of ignored it! I mean I had so much going on that I read it than I just didn't post a response or even acknowledge it. Now that I have been tagged AGAIN by Patricia at Primary Practice I suppose I will play along! [I mean the 2 year old is napping and the 6 year old is watching Tom and Jerry--so I have a few moments here!!]

Here are the rules:

1. Post the rules.
2. Post 12 fun facts about yourself.
3. Answer the questions the tagger set for you in her post, and then
create 12 new questions for the ones you tag.
4. Tag 12 people and link them in your post.
5. Let them know that they have been tagged.

Fun Facts About Me

1. Unless I am going out on Sunday I am sitting home in my pj's. I wake up, shower, and put on fresh pj's. I just love being comfortable.

2. Funny fact: My daughter woke me up this morning singing: Ring Around the Rosie. It was so cute!

3. I am a Dollar Bin addict! I know most of us are but I can't walk into Target without finding something there I love :)

4. I drive about 40 minutes to work everday (that is not so fun with 2 little ones in the backseat!)

5. A couple weeks ago I learned how to finger knit. Our school had a day called "Art Frenzy" where we learned different felting, knitting, weaving techniques. I actually made a Valentine's Day Crown for Tuesday.

6. I still have not read the Twilight series- although the first 2 books were given to me by my Secret Santa at work. They are sitting on my shelf...just waiting to be picked up! One day...

7. I might have posted this before but, I am a chocolate addict. I can't stop myself if there is chocolate in the house... maybe after Valentine's Day when all the chocolate is gone I will be able to use some self-control.

8. I DO not know how to deal with my parents at school. What I mean is I came from a school where there was 0 parent involvement and just getting a parent on the phone equaled a success. Now my parents want to come to parties and come in a help and I just don't know how to assign jobs. For example, we are having an ice cream sundae party on Tuesday and I didn't even invite parents (although I do have a few coming) because I hate the awkward feeling of them just standing around. I am getting better but I think I just don't know how to give up some of that control in the room. I am use to doing everything so letting go of that is hard! I love my parent volunteers and am very happy for the amount of involvement I have but I am still trying to figure out how to deal! Maybe someone can help me with this?!

9. When I make a craft or recipe from pinterest I really feel proud of myself. I just love a finished product!

10. I spend WAY too much money on school stuff (not just for me- for my kindergartener too!)

11. Hoping my husband got the hint that I want to see The Vow this weekend.... since it's almost over, I am thinking that he didn't...

12. I really want an IPAD but am thinking I am going to have to settle for a Nook or Kindle Fire. Do you know which one is better?

My answers
1. Who inspired you to blog? Babbling Abby was my biggest inspiration, but I also love Mrs. Jump (who more inspired me to open my TPT and TN stores).

2. Do any of your colleagues follow your blog? I don't think so... I know a few former colleagues do but my not my new ones.

3. How did you choose your blog name? I was thinking of something catchy and something we (as teachers) deal with on a daily basis--tattling!!!

4. What new skill do you want to learn? After buying clipart and working on my blog I am very interested in graphic design. I would love to make my own graphics!

5. What is your favorite resource for graphics? I always search Etsy first. There are so many choices on there. Also, Teacher's Notebook has some great reasonably priced graphics. If all else fails, lettering delights is good too.

6. What is your best blogging tip?
I am not that experienced but having just surpassed 100 followers I would recommend that new bloggers stick with it. It may seem like no one is reading but they are and over time you will have quite a few people listening to your perspective.

7. If you weren't a teacher, which profession would you choose?
After starting teaching I have thought that I could stay home with the kids and be a children's book author. It is still a dream of mine but I am not sure when I will follow through on that!

8. What is the best advice that you have ever been given? Leave it at school! When you have a bad day, sometimes you just need to leave it at school. I hate coming home negative [but believe me- it happens!]

9. What is your favorite comfort food? Chocolate!!!

10. What is your favorite way to relax? Taking a day away from everything. Whether this be litrally out of the house or not taking out my mac all day. With no temptation of school stuff I can relax.

11. Real books or Kindle? Well, I don't have a Kindle so I would say real books. But that could change once I get one...

12. What's your favorite font? I love all of Kevin and Amanda's Pea fonts. But my favorite font is Claudia Jean. I don't get to use it too much in first grade but I love it.

Here are my questions for you:

1. What time do you have to be at school?

2. How long do you get for planning and do you have to have PLC meetings with others throughout the week?

3. How do you handle/deal with your parent volunteers?

4. I know IPAD is the top choice but for budget purposes: KindleFire or Nook?

5. How long does it take you to plan on the weekend?

6. How often do you change bulletin boards and do you hang student work inside the class, outside of, or both?

7. What is your favorite TpT store?

8. How do you balance school and family time?

9. What kind of music do you and your kiddos listen to during the day?

10. Does your school provide you with an intervention program for your kids or do you have to come up with it?

11. What do you do to get out of school mode on the weekend?

12. Random: What do you think of Whitney Houston's death? Do you care?

Here are the bloggy friends I want to answer my above questions:
The Lemonade Stand
Bishop's Blackboard
Blissful Days in 2nd Grade
Crazy for First Grade
Curls and a Smile
First Grade Pandamonium
Inside the Classroom
The Lesson Plan Diva
Just Add Clipart
Life in First Grade
Mrs's Richardson's Class
Seusstastic Classroom Inspirations

Ok, that's it! Maybe something more school related later this week :)
Have a fun Sunday!


Friday, February 10, 2012

Catch up and my very first GIVEAWAY!

I am calling this my night of blogging catch up! I know I have actually blogged this week but I was too lazy to get my camera and upload photos.

The other day I blogged about a fun contraction activity and I just updated the post with photos of their fun!

Now, for the rest of week. We read and watched Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch, and we made some text-to-self connection and character analization of Mr. Hatch using my freebie unit on Mr. Hatch. Check it out here. Of course, the first day we started Mr. Hatch, it was Monday and the copy machine was broken--grrr! So, on the fly, I came up with a quick activity with heart shaped doilies. The kids wrote about what they could do to make someone feel loved. It turned out really cute...

We also read Valentine's Day is... by Gail Gibbons [I just love her]!
I didn't think the kids knew much about what Valentine's Day was or where it came from and it was apparent when we made this graphic organizer:

I got a lot of "I get candy" and I even had one kid write that the skunk is a symbol of this holiday [later she told me she read that in a fiction book!]. Here are some of the better ideas and new learning we had:

Today we made an amazing craft that I pinned here. The kids absolutely LOVED it!! It was really easy and it looks adorable (not sure I will be taking it down anytime soon!)

I couldn't resist making a few more for my house:

Last night I went into to Target to get diapers and found this in the dollar bin:

Valentine scrapbook paper- 8 sheets for a dollar. The best part is I was about to make another stop at Michaels for this! Winning!!!

Last, but not least, to celebrate my 99 followers and my very first complete unit on sale now:

I am having my very first giveaway!

So here is how you enter:
1. Follow my blog!
2. Follow my Teachers Pay Teachers Store.
3. Blog about my giveaway!

Leave one comment for each of the above and I will be choosing a random winner by Tuesday night! Remember to leave your name and email in your comments! Thanks so much for your support and good luck!


Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Motherly instincts...Listen to them!!

So, as I mentioned yesterday I stayed home with my little one yesterday for a slight fever but a happy attitude. I thought something was wrong with her but she was acting so normal I didn't take her to the doctor-- I HATE paying a co-pay for no reason (b/c usually "it's just a virus")! This morning I gave her some tylenol and took her on into school. She had a great day at school but wouldn't eat a snack when I picked her up! By the time we finally got home (45 minutes later) she had almost a 103 degree fever! What?! How did this happen? Turns out she has a DOUBLE ear infection! Poor baby... feeling like a total dud of a mom tonight! Then after taking her to a minute clinic (because my pediatrician is horrible with no late office hours) I had to pin her down to give her meds while she was literally spitting them in my face! My hubby was completely losing his patience with this [he was helping me hold her down] and I was laughing-- I just couldn't believe she was actually spitting it- not just on me- but in my face!!

She is now sound asleep in my bed...which is ok because I love cuddling with my little Addie Mae. Not sure my hubby can agree though-- I think he will be on the couch.

Anyway, today we worked with contractions in first grade. Look at this pin to see something fab we used. I made these paint-chip contraction cards this weekend and I didn't think much of it, but the kids thought it was the coolest game... you would have thought we were having recess or something! Basically each student had a card, they had to read the words then fold the paint chip and read the contraction. Then, they had to record their words and contraction on a recording sheet. After about a minute they swapped cards. We did this 12 times.

Click here to get the recording sheet. I am telling you they loved it... I think I can pull this out again with praise! The best part was they weren't just copying the words they were actually reading and talking to each other about it! I loved it as much as they did! I have some pics of them but I will update later, as I am going to snuggle up with my sweet girl!

UPDATE: Here are some photos of my kids working with the paint chip contraction cards!


Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Ready for a Day Off?

I don't know about you, but I am ready to be off on President's Day! I actually took off today because my 2 year old woke up with a fever, but she acted completely normal all day! Isn't that how it always happens?! So, with my day off I did a few things... I made heart shaped crayons out of a bunch of old broken crayons (for my kids Valentine's cards). It took A LONG time!! Really it was just the removal of the crayon paper that took forever. I got some cute silicone ice cube trays from the Dollar Bin at Target and used those for my molds. My inspiration came from none other than: Pinterest. Check out this pin to know what I am talking about!

Also, I finished my mini-unit for President's Day mini-unit.

My sister is a complete history buff and at about 3 my son had a little bit of an obsession with George Washington. So, I thought with President's Day less than 2 weeks away this would be a fun mini-unit! Here is a little freebie....

If you like that than check it out on TPT or TN. It is only $2, so it won't break the bank! :)
Ya'll have a GREAT night!!!


p.s. The first 2 people who comment on this post (with their email address) will get the mini-unit for FREE!!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Love the Currently Linky Party that Farley has going. Just a quick post to participate... nothing school related tonight!

Now, off for an early bedtime!


Sunday, February 5, 2012

I LOVE Linky Party

Linky parties are so much fun! Link up at Funky in First and tell what you love.

I am working through the super bowl-- mainly because the outcome makes no difference to me down here in Tennessee! Getting planned for 2 weeks so I can make some time to work on something new soon!

Have a great night!


V-Day Freebie

Have you ever read "Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch"? Pretty awesome book, right?

Well, you can "read" this with your class by visiting a favorit site of mine: There are many books to choose from but this story is perfect for upcoming Valentines Day.
Anyhoo, I have just put together a freebie to go along with the book. A very short comprehension packet with some writing.

Visit my TpT shop or TN store to get your free copy!

Hope you I might want to go to bed and rest these pink eyes (I might have forgot to mention that a kiddo gave me the present of pink eye on Friday!!!)


Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Oooo...It's a Mystery!!

The mystery may quite possibly be... how do I even have energy to post today? Seriously, my kids were crazy today! I mean they would not STOP talking! After conferring with my sister after work today I realized my kids are crazy because...
of me!!
Well, I don't know if this is true but I was thinking about everything we did today and maybe it was TOO fun! Is it possible? Can I provide too much fun for my kids and they just don't know how to handle it all? They were really calm during a traditional reading lesson. Did their seat work like champs. They were even good little workers during center time, then language arts came and POW--they would not shut up! We have been learning contractions all week! Yesterday we did "Contraction Kids" from The Inspired Apple. I did this with my kiddos last year and they LOVED it! I think it is just the cutest thing ever! See below:

Look at that hair! HA!

Anyway today I thought we could do something a little more intensive- Contraction Surgery. You would have thought I gave them a present! They were so excited when I was modeling how to fix the contraction with the band-aid. Then when I turned it over to them it was a melt down! I had kids crying b/c their band-aids were sticking together, they all the sudden couldn't figure out how to cut the word just right so the o was missing, etc. It was like chaos (and of course, my assistant wasn't there!) I was just happy when those 45 minutes finally came to an end!

Then after lunch we were doing place value (again?! when will this unit end!) Yesterday I couldn't find the mats and had them write on their desks with a dry erase. See here. They were freaking out about where they write, how they write, what color marker they have... then during math they would not shut up!

Am I too crazy for my kids? Should I pull out some workbooks? (Oh NO!) I am just going to have to mellow it out tomorrow!

Anyway, the real mystery is my mystery sentence center. At the beginning of the year we did mystery sentences together everyday. We unscrambled a sentence, wrote it, and at the end of the week (after 5 sentences) illustrated the story it became. Good handwriting practice and prediction work. After Christmas I decided to put this into a center. Here is what is looks like [on a Wednesday afternoon]:

Everyday I put a new scrambled up sentence in the pocket chart. The sentences are made from/with spelling words. The kids have to unscramble the sentence then add 4-5 more sentences to make their own story. Most of them love it! Then after center time I have them share their stories and I just love that-- listening to them read their own stories is delightful! Today one of my boys (who isn't especially motivated to do his best work all the time) actually did his best work in this center.

[If you can't read that: Which is shorter your hair or my hair? If I get a haircut my hair will be shorter than yours. I am gettig a haircut this weekend. And I told my mom I wanted it short. I got my hair short so my hair is shorter than yours.]
I was so impressed and had to share what a great thinking center this is. Now, I am going to go eat dinner and try not to think about this day any more--- until I grade papers later! LOL-- I know you understand!