Monday, May 25, 2015

Splish-Splash! It's a Summer Time Blog Bash!

Summer is almost here!  What better way to celebrate than with a fun blog hop!  I am joining Rachael from The Classroom Game Nook for this exciting hop!

The blog hop will run from May 25-29. Follow along, collect freebies, sign up to win some great prize packs, and hear what everyone is doing this summer.
My store is 20% off throughout the blog hop, too.  Stock up for next year with great savings.

This year I created a new product series called I am Reading.  These packs have raced to the top and are becoming one of my best sellers.  They include Lexiled fiction and nonfiction passages along with comprehension activities.  Each passage has the word count on them so you can check fluency rates as well.  This freebie is a sample of what the packs look like.

You could be the winner of one of my best selling Nonfiction News-Close Reading and Writing packs.  Just enter with the Rafflecopter below.

The winner will get to choose from one of these packs:


My entire shop is on sale during the blog hop so go grab so discounted products here.

Summer is my favorite season!  I adore hot, sunny days.  I even love humidity!  I cannot wait to have all day to enjoy the weather!

I have a long list of books to read that I've been collecting throughout the school year.

I love spending lazy days at our community pool.

I'm headed to New York in June!  I cannot wait.

My family is going to Cape May, NJ, the last week of June.  I love this old, historic town.

I'm heading to Las Vegas July 8th to attend the TPT conference.

I LOVE the summer!  What are you doing this summer?

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Cannot Wait for the Blog Hop

Something VERY exciting is about to happen here in blogland!

As a way to kick off the end of school and the beginning of summer, 40+ bloggers and I are doing a FABULOUS blog hop beginning  on Memorial Day, May 25th.
You will be able to grab all sorts of freebies and enter to win some amazing prizes (and maybe find a new blogger or two to follow!)!    Each blogger is giving exclusive freebies to all of our hoppers (that means YOU!) as well as a chance to win some of their best products!  You will NOT want to miss this week-long event.

So mark your calendars - Beginning at 9am (EST) May 25  you can start here.    Then you can hop off to pure summertime bliss for our SPLISH SPLASH:  It's a Summertime Blog Bash!  Invite your friends to the party as well!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

If You Give a Teacher a Gift Card

I know I am a little late on this but I've just come back from a week in Florida where my 16 year old daughter competed in The Cheerleading Worlds.  They ended up in 6th place.  Their goal was to make it to Day 3 - Finals.  They surpassed that goal and got 6th out of 78 in the World!!! So proud of all of their hard work, perseverance, and dedication. Here are some highlights:

So much fun...
Teacher Appreciation Week is just around the corner and the bloggers at my collaborative board  iTeach First want to show you a little love!  We are having a giveaway!  You could win one of four $25 gift cards. would you spend your gift card?
If you give a teacher a gift card from Amazon, she will probably look at clothing/shoes first.  She will  find an adorable outfit, but then question whether she deserves it.
Then, she will look at perfume/beauty products and think the extravagant price tag could be put to better use.
Next, she will look at some toys for her children, but think she really needs some smelly markers and books for her classroom.
So that fabulous teacher will spend her gift card on her students.

Enter to win a $25 gift card to some of our favorite places on the iTeach First blog.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Catching Up (and Currently)

It has been a very long, emotional week.

Last Saturday was the first day of Spring Break.  I woke up at the crack of dawn and started working on finishing up a TPT project. 
A few hours later my son told me my middle brother had texted him and I needed to call him.
I ran upstairs to my bedroom and grabbed my phone.  There were screens full of messages and missed calls.  I knew something was wrong.
My mind began to race and my heart prepared for the worst.

When I finally got through I found out it was my baby brother.  I was not expecting that at all.
He had driven himself to the hospital the night before because he did not feel right and his left arm was numb.  When he got there, they said he had a minor heart attack and transferred him to a bigger hospital.  There, he was told he had over 90% blockage in all 4 arteries and they began to put stints in.  When they got to the fourth artery, he had a massive heart attack.  He actually died ten times and was revived ten times. It was a good thing he was on the table when it happened otherwise I would be telling a different story.
Next, they transferred him to a new hospital that had an ECMO, a machine that takes over the work of the lungs and heart; basically life support.
My daughter and I were at the airport within 3 hours of getting the call and flew to NYC.
Emily went to stay with my brother's kids, age 5 and 11, and I stayed at the hospital.

After two days in 3 airports trying to get home (we flew standby) I am home and EXHAUSTED.   My brother's condition is the same but they did take him off sedation and we now know his brain is fine.  Hallelujah!

That's my story and my Currently pretty much reflects it.

Do you want to post a Currently on your blog?  Or maybe you want to see what everyone else is doing?  Check it out on Farley's blog.

I had planned on doing a Spring Break Sale so I've decided to throw it now even though I go back to school tomorrow.  Check it out here.
Happy Easter!
I know I am so thankful for all the blessings bestowed to me and my family, even my brother.  I know God's plan is perfect and He knows what He is doing in him.


Saturday, March 21, 2015

iTeachFirst Blog and Freebie

Happy Spring Friends,

As you know I am one of the collaborating authors of a new blog called iTeachFirst.  I just posted my introduction and a freebie.  I wanted to make sure all of my loyal followers on this blog had the opportunity to get the freebie.  Click on the picture below to check it out!

Sunday, March 15, 2015

iTeachFirst and a Giveaway

I have a very exciting announcement to make! 
I have decided to team up with some of my very best first grade buddies to write for a collaborative blog! 
That means ONE blog with TONS of great ideas from several super awesome First Grade teachers!

One thing I L-O-V-E about this blog, is you will know exactly what to expect each day of the week.  For every day, there is a blogging theme.  Check them out! 

I'm SO excited to get started on this new adventure, and am thrilled to invite you along for the ride.  Let's celebrate with a little giveaway!


You can win my Non Fiction News- Common Core Close Reading and Writing K-2 Baby Animal Edition.  This 139 page product is what you need to implement ELA Common Core Standards in your classroom. It includes 24 nonfiction articles for close reading on baby animals and the animal: Puppies, Puppy Fun Facts, Hedgehog Hoglets, Hedgehogs, African Elephant Calves, Elephants, Panda Cubs, Panda Bears, Piglets, Pigs, Polar Bear Cubs, Polar Bears, Giraffe Calf, Giraffes, Sea Lion Pups, Sea Lions, Koala Joeys, Koala Bears, Lambs, Sheep, Deer Fawn, Deer, Kittens, and Cats. The nonfiction articles include stunning photographs and nonfiction text features. They can be used in guided reading groups or whole class. They are a great way to practice close reading and answering text dependent questions citing evidence. Lesson plans for 8 days and the CCSS ELA standards (K, 1, 2) are included. You will also find all of the close reading resources, worksheets, writing materials, posters, sorts, activities in this pack.
The easy to read format, amazing photographs, and engaging topics will capture all of your students attention and begging for more!

All you have to do to enter is follow us over at iTeachFirst then follow the instructions.

Can't wait to get started sharing some great First Grade ideas with you! 

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Book Study: Worksheets Don’t Grow Dendrites: Chapters 3

I'm linking up ( a little late) with Deedee for week two of the book study, Worksheets Don't Grow Dendrites!


This week is all about field trips!  With school budgets being severely cut, we know how hard it is to go on field trips.  This chapter opened my eyes to in-house field trip possibilities and I'm excited to try them!  

I appreciated all of the out-of-the-box thinking that went into this chapter.  The ideas are not what I expected and are very do-able.

Here is what I've already done:

Above is a chick who came to our class when we researched chickens and their life cycle.

My son's ducklings came to school when we were researching ducks and learning about their life cycle. We did this in the middle of the unit which really enhanced their research projects!
I have Mystery Reader's come to our class.  They leave clues about their job and then children learn about their work.  I love to hear their questions and get a glimpse of their thinking.
 Tastiest How-to Writing!
If you live in Colorado you know Anthony's Pizza is real NY style pizza.  Here, the owner came in and showed our first graders the steps in making a pizza.    He allowed for questions and answers and was so patient and kind to our kiddos.  Best part of all, he gave us lots of free pizza (like 10 extra large pies) and coupons!  Yum!


We've had firemen come in and teach fire safety, an author come in, read her children's book and share with kids her writing process, veterans meet and talk with the children,  the insect mobile come to our school with bugs, and more.

Here is what my big ideas were from this chapter.

I am loving this book and highly recommend it to every teacher!