Friday, November 30, 2012

The Polar Express Craftivity Freebie

I know I've been absent from this sweet little blog lately.  To make it up to all of my loyal followers, here is an adorable, fun, easy craftivity you can use to accompany "The Polar Express" book or movie.  Not only is it adorable, fun, and easy, but it is also FREE!!! 
You can click on the picture to head over to google docs to download your copy.  It has everything you need to create the craftivity.  Included are directions for incorporating this craftivity into your Polar Express activities and reproducibles for the mug, hot chocolate, and marshamallows.  All I ask is that if you download a copy, please follow my blog by clicking on the "join this site" link on the right side of this page~thank you!
For this post I linked up with an awesome blog, Freebielicious.  They are having a new linky party featuring freebies from all over the blogosphere on the first of every month.  Click on the top picture to check out tons of other freebies!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Cyber Monday (Plus Tuesday) Sale

I love a good sale!  And now that the big Black Friday rush is over, how about doing a little shopping for your teaching needs?  In case you haven't heard, at Teachers Pay Teachers there is a HUGE, MEGA, GINORMOUS sale on Cyber Monday + Tuesday (November 26th and 27th).  Everything in my store will be 20% off!  Wowie Wow Wow!!!  Not only will you get 20% off, but if you enter this code: CMT12, you'll get an additional 10% off.  That adds up to a savings up 28% off the regular price.  My cart is already full of goodies!!! 

You do not want to miss this sale!  Head over to TPT now to load up your cart with all those great units you've added to your wish list.  You can click on the picture above from the lovely Ashley Hughes to head to my store or click on any of the products featured below. All 31 of my teaching resources will be on sale.  Here are some of my favorite products you might want to check out:

And check out one of my newest additions, a bundle zip file containing the first 5 Houghton Mifflin Theme Resource Packs

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Yack Attack! {Freebie}

Hi there!  Today's post is short and sweet!  One thing I've been meaning to share with all of you are my "Yack Attack" tokens.  My students get a "Yack Attack" when they call out or talk when they should be listening.  If they get 3 "Yack Attacks" in a day, they pull a card from our 4-3-2-1 system.  Luckily, no one has ever gotten 3, which tells me these babies must work!  I've heard of this idea before, so I can't take credit for coming up with the term, "Yack Attack."  But what I've done is actually create these as tokens to give to my students.  If you like this idea, click on the link to get your own free set.  Print as many as you need!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Being a Good Teammate, Near Doubles, & More

Hi bloggy world!  I have a few different things to share with you today and I hope you'll find some ideas you can use with your kiddos!
First I want to share this cute book
Bat's Big Game by Margaret Read McDonald
This is a fictional story about a bat who keeps changing teams between birds and animals during a big game of soccer.  He changes based upon who's winning.  In the end, no one wants him on their team since he isn't a loyal teammate.
I read the book to my students as a part of our weekly Olweus-inspired class meeting.  We had a great discussion before, during, and after reading.  After reading, I gave each student a football on which to write one way to be a good teammate.  They did such a great job!  Check out a few:

This activity was perfect for this time of year for a couple of reasons.  1.  We've been learning about bats, so it was fun to hear their explanations of whether bat belonged with the birds or the animals (mammals).  2.  "Loyal" was one of our text talk words from early in the school year and it was great to see if they still remembered the word and its meaning.  3.  It's football season, so these babies will make a great display in our hallway.  But before I hang them in the hallway, I want to show you what's hanging out there now:

Near Doubles Trees
     This is a craftivity that we made to help us understand near doubles (a.k.a. doubles plus one).  This is ALWAYS so tricky.  And some of you may disagree with me, but I often wonder is near doubles is actually a strategy that any first grader uses to add.  It's so hard for them to even grasp the concept, that I cannot imagine them actually using it when they're adding!  But I digress...
   Here's what we did.  I gave the students a tree pattern and I had a huge set of die-cut leaves.  The students glued their tree to the large blue construction paper.  Then they chose two colors for their leaves.  Using these two colors, they first displayed a doubles fact. 
Sorry, I didn't take a picture of the first step, but essentially, this student would've had four red leaves in the tree and four yellow leaves on the ground.  Then she recorded her doubles fact (4 + 4 = 8).  Next, she added one more red leaf to the tree to get her near double (5 + 4 = 9) and wrote it at the bottom.  We did this in these exact steps, so the students could first see their double, then very intentionally added one more leaf to the tree so they could understand how it became a near double.   
Here are a few more:

The doubles and near doubles trees made a great display to have up during parent-teacher conferences.  Which in case you haven't guessed, I survived parent-teacher conferences a few weeks ago!  Have you had them yet?  What really helped get me through were some forms that I created this year to help me stay on track, organized, and productive before, during, and after my conferences. 

 I have put these forms and many great others in a pack in my TPT store.  Click on the picture below to go there and check it out.