Sunday, March 31, 2013

Let's Get Acquainted Linky Party

Happy Easter! Hope you had a fabulous day celebrating! I know I did! I'll be back tomorrow with a recap of all the fun!

In other news, only 4 more followers until my blog hits 400 and celebrates with a giveaway! 
Here's a sneak peek at some of the generous donors! 
Mrs. Albanese's Kindergarten Class
Teacher Idea Factory
Little Red's Schoolhouse
Teeny Tiny Teacher
Tunstall's Teaching Tidbits
Dots of Fun
School Supply Addict
If you are interested in donating a prize send me an e-mail or comment below with your e-mail address and I'd love to have you!

Now it's time to get acquainted a bit more this week thanks to Latoya at Flying into First Grade.

This weekly linky party is wonderful because we really start to get to know each other a little bit more.

This week's theme is a Favorites Survey! Now this one I can definitely do! I sure have a lot of favorites that it is impossible to narrow it down to only one for each!

Here are the categories:
1. Favorite place to shop
2. Favorite TV show
3. Favorite sweet treat
4. Favorite food
5. Favorite restaurant

1. Favorite place to shop
Ahhh shopping! I live to shop! Retail therapy is the best therapy there is! 

My absolute favorite place to shop hands down is Target! 

I know who would have ever guessed Target would be my favorite place to shop? I mean I only have written a post each weekend with my shopping roundup from there. Dollar spot heaven! 

However, when it comes to shopping for clothes, Old Navy is where it's at! 

Love their fun colors and prints! Plus their clearance sales are amazing! 

2. Favorite TV show
When you ask a girl who has a DVR that is 90% full at all times to pick a favorite TV show it's basically impossible! I will name a few that I am particularly fond of.

Reality/Comedy - Total Blackout
If you are ever having a bad day, turn on Total Blackout and be prepared to laugh until you cry. The image above depicts a woman freaking out after touching a pineapple. The challenges they have to do are priceless! Funniest show ever!

Drama - Pretty Little Liars
LOVE this show! It's so intense and I love the mystery of it. Every episode leaves you in a cliff hanger! I can't stand the wait until it comes back on this summer! 

Singing/Competition - The Voice
I am really enjoying The Voice this season. I love the fact that the coaches don't get to see the singers before picking them for a team. I also love the close mentoring relationship they form with their team. I really like the new judges this season and can't wait to see what they have in store for us!

3. Favorite sweet treat
That's a tricky one! I have such a sweet tooth for candy in particular!

My favorite candy is a tie between Swedish Fish and Wild Berry Skittles! Yum!

4. Favorite food
I wish I could cook well. If I didn't want to be a teacher and I had the extra cash I would go to culinary school and pastry school. 
My favorite food to eat out is fried rice. I love Chinese food! It's to die for! 

My favorite home made dish is teriyaki chicken wings. So simple yet so delicious! I could eat them every day!

5. Favorite restaurant
Red Robin...Yum! 
I love their burgers and bottomless fries! So delicious! Plus I love the fact that every restaurant you visit has a different decor inside. If you haven't been I highly recommend going!

Well that's it! I tend to be long winded and this post definitely proved to live up to that! Hope you learned a little bit more about me! Hurry on over and link up! This is a fun one!

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Tell Me More Linky Party

It's time for another linky party! This time it's the Tell Me More linky party hosted by Stephanie from Primary Possibilities

This is a fun alliteration themed party which you all should know I would love! This time it's all about the playlist, plant and product! 

Here's what you share:

PLAYLIST- What kind of music do you play for your students?  What is on your “PLAYLIST”?  What do you use to “calm them down” or “pep them up”?

PLANT- What is your favorite PLANT?  Do you keep plants in your classroom?  How do you teach plants to your students?  Do you grow plants in your classroom?
PRODUCT-  What currently is your favorite PRODUCT?  Let’s be fair...  Choose one of your own and one of someone else.

First up, playlist...

Music is huge in the classroom for me! I am always playing songs for everything we learn. I know from personal experience, I can remember song lyrics by heart from years ago but ask me a simple phone number and it never is going to stick in my brain. 

Some of my favorites are Dr. Jean, Hap Palmer, Greg and Steve, Jack Hartman and Laurie Berkner. The children just eat these songs up! There are songs for every concept and they really help the children learn. 

I also love to play calming music that helps them focus on writing. We play lots of nature sounds and classical music. It really has helped. 

Next, plants...

I am allergic to lots of plants however I still love them. They just brighten up any room and instantly cheer you up. A sneeze here or there is so worth it for their beauty. My favorite flower as a child was baby's breath because I loved the name. Now I love the blue and green hydrangeas. They are my grandma's favorite too. 

In the classroom, plants are a large focus no matter the season. We focus on everything from different trees, apples, pumpkins, and flowers. I have grown flowers in cups but now I love the ones where you grow beans in a ziploc baggie and hang it in the window to really see the process.

Finally, product...

I don't have any products for sale but I do have some freebies. You can see them all in one place at the tab at the top labeled Freebies.    

My favorite freebie that I created was my first ever freebie: I have who has Tooth Fairy edition. 

As the name leads you to believe it is a game that deals with money amounts given from the tooth fairy. I just love how it turned out! 

My favorite products of another blogger are Cheryl's Little Old Lady Sub Tubs. 

Her newest one is ready for Easter and Spring. She has one for nearly every book and they are perfect! They make it so easy to have an entire lesson at your hands and the children just love them! Each pack has different activities to accompany the story. It has everything you need except the book! They are even low ink to print! Cheryl you have created such a treasure here! I look forward to you next sub tub! I know it will be just as fantastic! 

Now that you have heard from me, why don't you head on over and link up yourself! You will be glad you did!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Five for Friday

So it seems that I can't go a day without having the urge to join another linky party. There are just so many amazing linky parties that I love linking up for. They are the best way to meet other bloggers in my opinion! 

Speaking of meeting other bloggers, I am almost to 400 followers. I can't believe it! Can we get over this last 10 follower hump and hit 400? I sure hope so! I can't wait to celebrate with a big giveaway for you all! They are just so much fun! I love giving people the chance to win big!

Today I'm going to link up with Kacey from Doodle Bugs Teaching for Five for Friday.
As for the other linky parties, I am going to schedule two posts in advance for this weekend since I am a busy beaver. Read on to find out why!

Just a fair warning, there will be no pictures this post. I clearly forgot how to use a camera this week!

1. This week I didn't really do much at school. It was only a 3 day week. That's one of the huge perks of going to a Catholic school. We get a 5 day weekend. It's like another Spring Break and I love it! 

2. This weekend is all about celebrating. Hosting two parties back to back is lots of fun but entails lots of baking and cleaning! Especially when they are two completely different themes. Can't double dip items there. I will be sharing pics with Tara for Monday Made It next week because I am obsessed with how all my Pinterest finds have turned out! Stay tuned!

3. A retired teacher was so kind to let me scrounge through her books to help continue to grow my collection. I haven't even begun to count how many books I was fortunate enough to receive but let me tell you it is a whole whole lot. I really focused on getting quality non-fiction which is huge now due to the CCSS. It is making me really excited for student teaching! The time is getting near! 

4. I taught my second whole class lesson this week. It went even better than last week. These firsties just blow me away with how smart they are! They are becoming experts! I am really starting to build my confidence when it comes to classroom management which is huge. My favorite thing is using the little singing stuffed animals for transitions. It is a great way for children to get the cue without having to speak. You can change it up for each season and I just love it!

5. I am unfortunately out of the March Madness tournament in my household. Both teams I picked to play in the championship were eliminated. Oh well, it's still fun to watch! The games are so intense this year! If you picked teams how are you doing? All these upsets did not fare well for my bracket! However I am all about the underdogs and Cinderella teams so I hope to see one of them win this year! 

Well that's it! Hopefully next week I will have more to share! Come May I definitely will that's for sure! Go visit Kacey and find out what everyone else was up to this week!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Five For Friday

All day yesterday I kept thinking it was Friday. That's what happens when you have no school on a Friday. I was blog stalking and wondering how it could be that no one linked up with Kacey for Five for Friday when her linky party is so popular! I finally figured out it couldn't be Friday based on that fact alone! 

Since today is indeed Friday, I'm linking up! 

1. I taught my first ever full class lesson this week and it went really well! It was surprisingly much easier to manage the whole class than I thought! The kiddos were so engaged and I was so impressed by their learning! Brain Pop Jr is my new best friend! Those videos are beyond adorable! Shout out to Catherine from The Brown Bag Teacher for helping me out with some great ideas to use in the classroom!
 Thanks so much! The kiddos loved it!

2. Although Wednesday was the first day of Spring, yesterday we had a random snowstorm!
Spring, Spring, where are you? I want to see some bright cheery flowers and warm sunshiney weather!

3. March Madness is is FULL swing in my house! I never have a good bracket but I have loads of fun competing against the family. This year we even got my grandma involved and she has really become invested in watching to see if her teams win! This year is really intense! I mean #1 Gonzaga nearly losing to #16 team! Crazy! You can never count any teams out!

I'm playing in a little bloggy March Madness tournament hosted by Diane at Fifth in the Middle. 
I currently am in 20th place out of 25 but lucky for me there is a random winner prize each round so I don't have to have a good bracket to win! Are you following the madness? Who do you have winning?

4. Now is the time to reveal my two truths and a lie from Latoya's linky party! 
The three choices were...
1) I won the 5th grade spelling bee by spelling the word hearth.
2) I wore a hula skirt to my elementary school graduation.
3) I stayed inside from recess nearly every day as a choice.
Here are the results!
1) LIE! Brandi, Julie, Jessica and Terri all guessed correctly! 
I came in second place in the spelling bee because I spelled hearth wrong. I went with harth. A mistake that clearly I will never forget! Great guesses ladies! 
2) TRUTH! We had a Hawaiian themed graduation celebration even though I went to school no where near Hawaii! It was a lot of fun to dress up for a day! 
3) TRUTH! I hardly ever went outside for recess. I preferred to stay inside and learn sign language so I could communicate with the special education students who were in my class. I even had my own sign name and everything! Little teacher in the making!

5. A while back I hosted a giveaway for THE pencil sharpener! A winner was finally chosen! 
 The winner of the world's greatest pencil sharpener is....Lorina DeMello! 
Congrats Lorina! I will be contacting you very shortly to claim your fantastic prize! Which fantastic color will you choose?

Thanks so much for hosting once again Kacey! It's so much fun to give the week a little recap! I am looking forward to a very relaxing weekend watching some movies! It's rough adjusting back to school after a week off! Happy weekend!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

SomeBUNNY Loves Your Blog Linky!

Christina at Bunting, Books, and Bainbridge is hosting a super fun linky party! It's cute, holiday related, and all about being a bucket filler of other bloggers! 

The rules are very simple! Grab the image, share the love with another blogger, let that blogger know you love them, and link up with Christina so everyone can share the love. 

I'm highlighting one of my favorite blogs of all time.

It's Reagan from Tunstall's Teaching Tidbits! SomeBUNNY just loves your blog Reagan!

Reagan's blog is so fun to read! Any blog with an alliteration in the name is great in my book! I blame her for my shopping obsession because posts the best ideas for the classroom! Those Easter goodies she snagged at Walmart? Yup obsessed! Speaking of her classroom, have you seen the pics? The colors, the rug, the bright yellow rocking chair! I am obsessed with her homey classroom! And the products she creates to sell on TPT? The most amazing resources you will ever find! I want to be a student in her room for a day! I'm sure it would be the most fabulous experience ever! I know that because of Reagan's great teaching ideas I will be a much more effective teacher!

If you don't already follow Reagan you are seriously missing out! Hop to it and follow Reagan today so you never miss out on another fabulous idea again! 

Thanks so much for hosting this wonderful linky party Christina! It was so much fun! I can't wait to meet some more new blogging friends along the way!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

2 Truths and a Lie

I like to be the first one to arrive, or fashionably late to any party. Since I am clearly not going to be first to arrive, I prefer to call myself fashionably late to Latoya's linky party. 

I never got around to linking up to her first series but I was waiting for today so I could link up. I knew she would have another fun go around and she didn't disappoint! 

This week's topic is 2 Truths and a Lie. Now I should be fantastic at this game! I have played it so many time throughout high school and college. However, I can never think of anything good and finding a believable lie is incredibly difficult for me to come up with. Yet, I am willing to give it a good go for bloggy fun! 

I decided to link my three choices to elementary school memories because I thought it would be fun being that this is a teaching related blog. 

Here are my three choices:
1) I won the 5th grade spelling bee by spelling the word hearth.
2) I wore a hula skirt to my elementary school graduation.
3) I stayed inside from recess nearly every day as a choice.

Which is the lie? Can you tell? Leave me a comment below with your guess! I'll be back next week to share the truth! 

I'm off to go watch some Revenge and try to remain in denial that Spring Break is over and it's back to school.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Do You Sheppard Software?

I don't know about you, but when kids have the choice to work with pencil and paper or play a game on the computer they always jump for the computer. The best part, the time they spend on the computer they are 100% engaged and truly learning! 

This past week I was informed of a fantastic FREE website that is a teacher's dream. Have you heard of Sheppard Software? If not you better get to bookmarking because it is sure to be one of your favorite new sites! 
 Their tagline is "we make learning fun" and boy do they ever! I witnessed firsties in action playing the various math games and they were having so much fun. They never wanted to leave the center. It covers a wide variety of topics however, in class we focused just on the math portion. 

Here are some of my favorite things about the website:

1) It is broken down by concept
There are various sections for addition, place value, comparing, estimating and many more.
Here is a snippet of the games that can be played when learning basic operations.

2) Each game can be differentiated by skill level
In a class there are so many differing abilities. Sheppard Software makes it very easy to tackle that challenge. 
One of the kiddos favorites is a game called Fruit Shoot. 
With the addition game there are four levels. 
Just look how many ways the game can be differentiated just for addition and subtraction alone!

3) The games feature familiar references
Mathman is just like Pacman so it links math with prior fun games that the children love!

4) The games are easily linked to the CCSS
This website makes it easy to pick the games that are linked to the CCSS that you are learning about that week

5) The website spans numerous grade levels
As I don't stay in one grade level this website is perfect! I can take it to whichever grade level I am teaching because there are games for everyone

This website is so fun and interactive. The children and your teacher self will fall in love! Where else can you find such perfect games separated by concept and skill level for FREE? You can't beat Sheppard Software!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Five For Friday {Spring Break Edition}

This week's Five For Friday with Kacey is a boring one. 
With Spring Break there wasn't much going on in my life to share. However I can't pass up a great linky party so here goes nothing! 

1. Created a fun Easter freebie which led into FINALLY updating the freebies tab on my blog. Click on the freebies tab to be taken to a page where you can directly download any freebie I have ever created. 

2. Shopping spree day
Click on any of the pictures to read a detailed description of my trip!

3. Became addicted to the app 94 seconds
If you haven't played you are seriously missing out! I love it because it is a quick simple game yet has lots of competition! My record is 27 so far! Can you beat that?

4. Went shopping yet again because some other bloggers...
*cough* Reagan and Kim *cough*
Click on either picture to see what I snagged!

5. My giveaway for the best pencil sharpener ever ends next Friday. Hurry and enter before it's too late! Click HERE or the picture below to enter!

Well that's it! Head on over to link up! 

Next week I promise I will have loads more classroom fun to share! Stay tuned tomorrow when I share of a great website to use in the classroom! I know you are going to love it!
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