Sunday, March 30, 2014

A SATURDAY WELL SPENT

Yesterday I woke up thinking to myself "Why did I sign up for this Saturday workshop?" 

I didn't want to go.
I had too many things to do!
I wasn't going to learn anything new.
I even pondered bringing along some papers to grade...admit it, we all do it!
Still, I got up and headed out...I needed those hours!

Well, I was in for a pleasant surprise!

It turned out to be a Saturday well spent with The Bag Ladies!

You see, I haven't been feeling like a great teacher lately. I've been feeling like my lessons have been lack-luster and that I've been stuck in a rut following the same old routine.  So, I signed up to attend this Make and Take workshop to see if I can get some ideas to spruce up my lessons.   I am so glad I did because Karen and Cindy, also known as The Bag Ladies, presented some fun, hands-on projects that got me motivated again!

Their approach is simple yet fun!  They use very inexpensive things such as brown paper bags, shopping bags, old file folders, calendar pages, envelopes and even those coffee sleeves you get from your favorite coffee shops to make books, journals and other fun things.

I am already thinking of ways to incorporate their ideas in my upcoming lessons!


I never would have thought to use these sleeves as a fun way to write vocabulary words in.  
I'm sure there are lots of other ways to use this idea!

The ladies reused this shopping bag to create a place to write reading responses.

They cut out a pocket and adding paper with brads.

This "toolbox" was used to store "tools" they used to learn the concepts in a particular unit.
I'm thinking we can make a writing toolbox and even a reading toolbox!

The ladies put several small brown paper bags together to make this "Vocabulary Builder."
The bags actually collapse and the words are stored in the pockets.

There were so many other great examples but I was only able to snap pictures of these ones.  If you would like to learn more about The Bag Ladies, please visit their website by clicking HERE.

I hope all of you have a great day!

Now...I'm off to bake cookies!
Antoinette :)

P.S.  If you are looking for quick Easter themed math and literacy printables, click HERE...they're FREE! 

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

LEXICONS

Ever have one of those days when your students are on and you're like YES!  
That's exactly how I felt yesterday when the kids and I did our weekly lexicon.  


I had one of my students randomly choose a word from the dictionary just like I do every Monday.  

The word of the week...daughter.  

We recited our cute little rhyme and then counted the vowels, the consonants and added them together.

Student #1 - "Another way to make 8 is 4+4.  That's a double."
Student #2 - "The word daughter is a rule breaker because 'au' doesn't make the long a sound."
Student #3 - "I see bossy r!"

We went on and talked about the syllables.  Then, I wrote out the definition.

Student #4 - "What is a boy called?"
Student #5 to Student #4 - "A son!  But not the sun in the sky.  This son is spelled s-o-n."

I decided to throw in a little review of pronouns and prepositional phrases and they rocked that too!

When we were finished, we added the word to our lexicon word ring (which the kids refer back to quite often during writing time) and went on with the rest of the day. 


Yesterday really made me realize just how valuable lexicons can be.  The kids have the opportunity to learn new vocabulary and make connections across subjects.

Meanwhile in the kitchen...

During Spring Break, my good friend Jessica's dad gave us tickets to watch Maroon 5 at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.

Hello Adam Levine!


So...I made these cute little cookies as a thank you. 


He loved them!

Hope everyone has a great night!













Saturday, March 15, 2014

PLANS and a FREEBIE!

So what are your plans for St. Patrick's Day?

I am actually excited that St. Patrick's day falls on the day we get back after Spring Break!

Besides the fact that we get to wear jeans - woo hoo! -  it is a perfect way to ease back in to school.

Here's what I plan on doing...

We'll start the day off by reading Clever Tom and the Leprechaun by Linda Shute.  After reading the book we'll discuss what the author's purpose is since that is the concept we'll be working on that week.


For writing, we will do a cute activity that one of my teammates found on Pinterest.  The kids will think of six wishes and write one each on a strip of construction paper (rainbow colors).  Then, they'll glue the strips to the bottom of a pot of gold.  I can't wait to see how these turn out.  They will definitely put a pop of color into our classroom!

For math, the kids will do a read the room activity in which they practice counting mixed collections of coins.  Of course, we will be graphing Lucky Charms too!   If you are interested, you can find my St. Patrick's Day money read the room pack here.

If you are looking for some quick, easy and FREE printables for St. Patrick's Day click here.  Enjoy!

Have a good night!
  





Friday, March 14, 2014

A YEAR AND SIX MONTHS AGO...

A year and six months ago...
(I feel like Star Wars music should be playing in the background...ha!)

Yes folks, the last time I posted was a year and six months ago.  Eeek!

Well, a lot of things have happened during that time....I mean A LOT!  But all is well now, I've gained new momentum and am ready to do this whole blogging thing again!

So here's what I've been up to lately...
- LOTS of cookie baking and decorating
- enjoying this school year...I love my group of kids!
- finally opening up a store on TPT and uploading products (my proudest accomplishment!)

Please be sure to check back for more posts and a new blog design!!

Thanks for sticking around,
Antoinette :)