Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Habitats

We're up to our ears in test prep...but we did manage to squeeze in some science fun last week. We had a Moby and Annie and habitats flip book kind of day. 
Super simple...but we loved it!
Leave a comment below and then join the fun by linking up with Christina over at Sugar and Spice
Happy almost Thursday! ;) 

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Five for Friday {on a Saturday}

Hey y'all! 
Today I'm linking up with my good friend Kacey for her Five for Friday linky party...fun times! 
Last weekend I met up with some fabulous teacher/blogging friends for an amazing (and much needed) girls' weekend. We met in beautiful San Antonio to shop, eat, shop some more...and did I already mention eat? Oh yea...and we also ran/walked the Neon Dash. It was so much fun! 
Meeting blogging friends is the best part of this journey...and I'm so glad I got to spend time with these precious girls...they're all so beautiful inside and out.
Love them! 
{front row: me, Hope, Crystal, Deanna, Cara, Reagan, and Amy 
back row: Alisha, Elizabeth, Stephanie, Deedee, and Kacey}
And you can't visit Texas in the spring without taking a picture in some beautiful bluebonnets. Here we are before the race getting our neon on and sporting our tutus. ;)
And after...such a blast! 

If you want to read all about our amazing weekend...my friend Reagan summed it up best in this post. Be sure to check it out! I loved hanging out with these girls...they're absolutely amazing! And now I want to go to Vegas just to spend some more time chatting it up with them and my other blogging friends that didn't get to make it this time around. 
Hurry up, summertime! 
Our 4th and 5th graders took our state exam this past week...and boy was it hard to keep my little 3rd graders engaged in quiet activities all day long. I'm so glad we are back to our normal routine...that is until it's our turn to take the test. Eeek! 
We have been busy learning about different habitats...Moby and Annie have been extremely helpful this week...my littles love BrainPop, Jr. and so do I! 
I decided to keep it simple...so it was a habitats flip-books kind of week. ;) 
Even though traveling is difficult at times...the weather has been so perfect...we've thoroughly been enjoying my dear daughter's softball games...can't wait until the playoffs begin. Go Lady Eagles! 
Last but not least...I've been working on this little product...and I'm almost done. So excited about it! 

Now it's your turn...what fun things have you been up to? 
Go link up with Kacey!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

A Little Birthday Fun

Hey y'all! 
I'm here to let 'ya know about a little birthday fun that will be happening today. 
In celebration of my 30th something birthday ;) I will be having some fun giveaways, flash freebies, and exciting sales...stay tuned to all my social media...because you don't know where it will happen. 
It might be here on my blog, on my Facebook page, or on my favorite social media outlet at the moment, Instagram
All I know is it's going to be lots of fun! You don't want to miss out! Here's the first fun item...
I'll select a winner on Friday March 14, 2014. 

Happy Day! 

Monday, March 10, 2014

St. Patrick's Day Activities, Spring Break, and other Random Stuff

Hey y'all!
So the weather has been cloudy, wet, 58 degrees (that's chilly for this Texas gal!), a little dreary if you ask me...but who cares! I'm on Spring Break and lovin' every single minute of it! Tomorrow though, I'm hoping for sunny skies...this girl needs sunshine. ;) 

This week my entire time will be devoted to my littles...softball games, movies, 
kite flying, bike riding, and a road trip are the things we are looking forward to this week. 
Awww...the joy of being on vacation.

On another note...next Monday will be St. Patrick's Day and my kiddidles will be using this 'lil unit I created last year...I can't wait to use the projectable book and mini-reader with my struggling babies...I know they will love it!
Here's what's included in the unit...take a looksie. 
If you like what you see the unit will be on sale for 20% off until Tuesday at midnight.
Click here to go to my TpT store.

I'd also love to have an old-fashioned giveaway...just leave me a sweet comment below (as well as your email addy) and I'll choose 2 random comments sometime tomorrow. 

Another quick thing...if you are implementing the Houghton Mifflin's Journeys reading series...I'm almost finished with the last few stories...after I list them separately...I will then bundle them up in a nice little packet for your convenience. 
Here's the one I'm working on right now...I hope to be finished tomorrow.  
Stop by later on during the week for a birthday surprise...whose birthday you ask?
Well...mine of course! ;) 

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Bright Ideas Blog Hop {#2}

Hi y'all! Happy Sunday!
Today I'm joining some amazing teacher-bloggers for another round of Bright Ideas.
So...grab that second cup of coffee...hop along with us...and have fun!

As teachers we all know how crucial vocabulary instruction is, right?
Research has shown that vocabulary influences fluency, comprehension, and student achievement. It plays an important role in learning to read as well as reading to learn. In addition, a broad vocabulary is essential for effective speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills. We can't deny the importance vocabulary instruction has in our classrooms.

Today I am here with a few tips...just a few little things that I find helpful in fostering vocabulary development in my own classroom. 
In my classroom, I use authentic literature to explicitly teach vocabulary. This is not to say that I only use fiction read alouds...no, that's not the case. While I do find teaching good fiction pieces extremely helpful in teaching vocabulary, I often find myself using nonfiction pieces as well. A good nonfiction article can be invaluable in teaching academic language. 
Relating the vocabulary word to a concept being taught and supplying a kid-friendly definition is very important. Doing so will help your students tremendously. So go ahead...use the word in a sentence and give several meaningful examples...then switch roles and have the students do what you have just modeled. 
Have your students use the word...ask them to restate the definition, explain its meaning in their own words, or give an example of the word. If they can do this, then they have demonstrated understanding of the word...if they can't...it's okay, don't worry...they just need more exposure to this new word. 
Display the vocabulary word in anchor charts, concept maps, or create a 
"fancy words" word wall to display the targeted vocabulary. All of this exposure will have your students learning and internalizing the new vocabulary in no time. 
I always have my students write the new word and its meaning in their own words...using a kid-friendly definition. Then I ask them to draw a picture or symbol to represent that word. Doing so helps bring the vocabulary word to life and it will most definitely help them remember it. 
Model the use of academic language. Point out the new word as you read the text. Use the word frequently...and set high expectations for your students to use it as well. Ask your students to construct sentences with the new word and encourage them to use the new vocabulary when speaking. 
Reinforce the word through interactive games. Play with and manipulate the new vocabulary...find rhyming words, synonyms, antonyms. 
Create vocabulary games and interactive word walls. 
Have fun with the new acquired language! 
Allow plenty of opportunities to read. Reading allows your students to be exposed to words all the time. So...have them read, read, read! They can read to themselves, to a partner, or even to you...the point is to have them read so they are soaking up that rich content language.

I hope you find these tips helpful...if you have any more to add to the list...I'd love to hear from you! 

Next up on the blog hop is Finding Joy in 6th Grade...she has a great classroom management tip.
Just click on her button to check it out.
Alternatively, you may want to visit the link-up below and choose a topic that interests you!

Happy hoppin'! 




Sunday, March 2, 2014

All in the Family {Update} and a Giveaway

Do y'all remember way back when in 2012 {yikes, was it that long ago?!} that I posted about this 'lil unit? I even blogged about it here...when I was a guest blogger over at Jennifer and Daphne's blog Pixie Chicks. I have always used this lesson to introduce fact families to my kiddidles...it's hands on and so much fun...and I have to say that the lesson really sticks with them...it helps them tremendously. 
Well...as much as I loved that unit, it really needed an update...so I went back to the beginning...updated fonts, graphics, and added some interactive notebook pages as well as a few other things. Here's a sneak peek at what it looks like now.
If you own this unit already...just redownload and you'll have access to all the new goodies. 
Are you up for a 'lil giveaway? Go to my FB fan page and leave a comment for your chance to win...I'll be choosing a winner sometime this evening. :)

Do you need a new way to teach fact families soon?
Grab this resource while it's on sale for 20% off...today and tomorrow only!