Friday, December 28, 2012

Sweet Treats, Last 2012 Sale, and Linky Party Reminder

Are you loving winter break? I am. I love wearing my PJs pretty much all day and actually reading a book. I have also been able to finish my Valentine centers for all of you early planners. That's so not me but I wish it was! 

Here are some images from the pack. You can click on any of them to view it on TPT.

Best of all, I am having an End of the Year sale in my store from Friday through  Sunday. Thanks for all your support this year!  Y'all are the best!

Graphics from Maree Truelove.

So much has been going on that I almost forgot about my "Best Books for Boys" linky party. Now that you are off on vacation, feel free to link up. One lucky person will get a $25 Amazon gift certificate.

 Click on the picture to head over to the linky party.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

12 in '12

I'm joining the fabulous ladies at "Miss Kindergarten" and "A Teeny Tiny Teacher' for the 12 in 12 linky party. Here are 12 of my favorite things!

(12) Favorite movie you watched

I absolutely loved the "Hunger Games" books and the movie was just as good. I usually can't watch a movie more than once but I've already watched this movie several times.

I'm really looking forward to "Les Miserables" I know all the words to the songs because I've seen the musical so many times. However, I will not be singing it in the theater just cause that drives me crazy when people do that. 
(11) Favorite TV series

I love "Big Bang Theory" and "Modern Family" but my favorite series this year was "Scandal."
Do you watch it? It completely sucked me in.

(10) Favorite restaurant

My favorite new restaurant is Tupelo Honey. I went over Fall Break to Asheville to eat there and now we have one in Knoxville. Yummy! You have to go there if you go to Asheville or come to Knoxville. The wait is quite long but it's worth it. 

 I mean c'mon look at those biscuits with homemade jam and honey. That's what they give you before your food comes. And the okra is too die for too!

(9) Favorite new thing you tried

This would have to be BragTags from imagestuff. The kids love them so much and I can get them to do about anything for BragTags.

(8) Favorite gift you got

I had my 30th birthday this year and I was surprised with my favorite flowers at school. The arrangement was gorgeous!

(7) Favorite thing you pinned
How can I pick just one? I love Pinterest. 
 One of my favorite things I've bought after seeing it on Pinterest are wreaths from twoinspireyou on Etsy. This is the one I have for Christmas. It's gorgeous in person and it also has a little sparkle.

I got this one for the fall. I have gotten tons of compliments on it.

(6) Favorite blog post
My favorite blog post was my "Show Off Your Space" linky party. I had lots of entries and I love peeking into other people's classrooms. I saw lots of things that I wanted to do in my classroom. You can view the linky party by clicking on the picture above.

(5) Best accomplishment

I was named "Teacher of the Month" for this December by a local radio station. It was such an honor because one of my kid's parents nominated me and wrote the sweetest letter. That really made my month because I was beginning to feel completely burned out.

(4) Favorite picture

 No, that's not me. That's my beautiful sister-in-law. This is my favorite picture because I am going to be an aunt soon and I am super excited about it.

(3) Favorite memory

 I got to see Chipper Jones last home game. I've grown up watching the Braves so it was good to see his send off.

(2) Goal for 2013
 Leave school earlier. I spend way too much time at school and I need to have some "me" time, like going to the gym or cooking dinner. My goal is to leave school earlier than normal. I'm not going to say what time because I know I won't always make a certain time but I want to leave earlier than I normally do. 

(1) One little word
Why's that my word? Honestly, I'm completely burned out. I wish I could just teach the kids but all the other things keep piling on. It's seems all I'm doing lately is testing and filling out forms. I hate that that's what teaching has become but I'm hoping it will get better. I love my class this year and they make it so much easier!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Christmas opinion freebies

Have you started writing opinion pieces as part of the common core? This was our first year to teach opinion as a writing genre and I have really loved it. Usually, we do how-to as this time of the year but that has gone away. I was kinda upset about not teaching how-to anymore because there is so much that you can do with it. But I now love teaching opinion. (There'

This is one of my favorite writing pieces that I have ever read. I've read it to tons of people just because I love it so much. Obviously, she was very opinionated about this topic. I was out at a conference with the kids did this so I'm impressed that she wrote so much with a sub in the room.

If you can't read it, this is what it says:
In my opinion, it is better to be a reindeer than an elf because an elf does not get to guide a sleigh and see people's houses. A reindeer can. People believe in reindeer more than elves. People sing about reindeer. Reindeer fly with Santa not elves. Reindeer have babies. Elves do not. Reindeer can fly really really really fast. Reindeer run really really really fast too. Reindeer can guide Santa's sleigh on Christmas Eve. Elves can't fly and are not strong enough. Reindeer take it easy. Elves do all the work. Reindeer can fly to a lot of houses. Elves can't. Reindeer are the best.

So cute! Anyways, I just had to share that because it gave me such joy. I have made several other opinion prompts for Christmas and some Christmas books. You could probably also use some of them without the books.

Click here to download a free copy (if you leave a comment.) 
Clipart from DJ Inkers and Scrappin Doodles

Please leave me a comment if you download a copy. I know lots of you are out there that grab a copy and don't comment. I used to do that too. It just takes a second and makes the time to post something worth it.

Have a good night!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Elf Mischief

We've had our elf for two weeks now and he has been up to lots of mischief. The kids decided to name him Elfred and I have no idea why. I keep wanting to call him Jingle since that's what we named him last year.
 Elfred decided to draw himself on the board. The kids were upset that he didn't write his E correctly. 

 Elfred stole a candy cane ornament off of the tree and tried to eat it. 

 Elfred got really bored and took pictures of himself on all the computers and devices in the room.

 The kids decided he must have a brother because of this picture.

 He even played with the iPods and the iPad.

He decided to play Santa Bump with Charlie Brown.  He even used red and green cubes. Haha!

Have a good week friends!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Best Books for Boys (linky party + giveaway)

This past week, I went to a conference for Title 1 schools and I heard a great presentation about boys and reading by Michael Shoulders. Some of the research that he presented said that the average fourth grade girl reader is 1 year above grade level and the average fourth grade boy reader is 2 years below grade level. Unbelievable! Honestly, if I look at my classes over the last few years, my lowest reading groups consist of mostly boys. (Here's an article I found online with more interesting research if you're interested)

As teachers know, boys love nonfiction and this is backed by research. Boys do well remembering facts and figures. This week, I was reading a book about reindeer to my class and my boys could remember so many specific facts about reindeer the next day. They remembered more than I did.

I've noticed in my classroom library that I have mostly fiction books. In second grade, boys will read fiction books but they are drawn to the nonfiction books. I know that I need to do better to get my boys reading and loving to read so I thought I would host a linky party so we could all share ideas about books that boys love.

You can join the linky party by linking up below.

These smart word readers are a huge hit in my classroom. They are always in some one's book box.
 This "Who Was.." biography series was really popular in my classroom last year.  About half my class loved reading biographies and these were very appealing to them. There's a whole bunch of them with famous Americans and other famous world leaders. My girls loved these too because I had some with Annie Oakley, Helen Keller, and Sacagawea.

This book was shown at the training that I attended. It has lots of interesting, gross stories that the boys will love. I went to the Scholastic Warehouse sale today nearest my house and found it there. I can't wait to introduce it to my boys.

 These sports alphabet books by Brad Herzog are great for boys. There's a whole bunch of them you can find if you search for the author's name.
"Remarkable Reindeer" has been a big hit in my classroom lately. The other Science Vocabulary Readers are great too.

So what do your boys love? Link up below. Don't forget to grab the button when you do so other people can find the linky party. If you don't have a blog, feel free to leave a comment with your favorite books. If I get lots of entries, I'll try to combine them into a resource for all teachers. 

Best of all, I am going to give away a $25 Amazon gift certificate to one of the entrants. I'll draw for the gift card in mid January.

If anyone knows how to add a scroll box underneath my linky party image, let me know. I have done it before but I can't remember how to now. I would like to do it to make it easier to embed in your posts. 

Saturday, December 1, 2012

2nd grade 12 days of Christmas

You will not want to miss the chance to enter this great giveaway at Lory's Page. 
Twelve awesome 2nd grade bloggers are participating and 12 winners will receive a file from each of these blogs.

Check out Lory's page by clicking on the image above to enter the giveaway. 

You can win my "Snowmen at Christmas" pack.

Good luck!