Monday, May 2, 2016

Teacher Appreciation Sale and TPT Gift Cards Giveaway!

It’s hard to believe it’s almost the end of the school year- in fact, I only have 17 student days left.  I’ve had a great group of students this year so it’s going to be a bittersweet ending to this school year! 

But- for now, I want to appreciate all of you teachers out there!  We have a tough job and I want you to spend this week thinking about all of the great things about teaching and why you started in the first place!  I know the day to day can be extremely demanding, but focusing on the students and why you LOVE your job does help!  I want to say THANK YOU by having a GIVEAWAY- like a really BIG GIVEAWAY!  I am going to give away 4 $25 Teachers Pay Teachers Gift Cards and I am also giving away 2 Ultimate Guided Reading Toolkit Levels O-Z and 1 Ultimate Guided Reading Toolkit Levels A-Z!   You can choose to enter 1, 2, or all 3 Rafflecopters!

Also, I wanted to share one of my end of the year FREEBIES!  I love doing a little end of the year countdown!  I actually do it for all of the First Grade Teachers in my school.  I put the “rewards” in an envelope and seal them so the teachers don’t even know what the reward is for the day!  It keeps them on their toes!

Happy Teacher Appreciation Week!  You can enter the Rafflecopters here:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Mother's Day Ideas

It’s hard to believe that Mother’s Day is right around the corner!  We are starting to get our projects going this year.  So, I thought I would share with you what we are planning.  Two of the things we have done the past couple of years.  The third is something new we are trying.  So, here they are!

 1.  Spa Mom-  I cannot say enough how much I LOVE this project!  I think it’s just so original and the kids absolutely love making it for mom.  This project was made by Fluttering Through First Grade.  Click on their name or the picture to take you to their blog post about this project.

2.  The World Needs Moms-  This is a book that I made for the kids to make for their mom.  There are different questions for the kids to answer about their mother.  It’s great to see what they come up with!  Included in the product, there are also pages for Grandma in case you have any kiddos that don’t have a mom to make it for.  Some sample questions are:  What kind of little girl was your mom?  Who’s the boss at your house?  What does your mom like to clean?  What does your mom do in her spare time?  I usually choose 8 different questions to put into the book.

3.  Word Cloud- This is something new we are trying this year.  The kids are going to make a word cloud about their mom.  We are using the Word Cloud on  If you type in the word mom several times, it will make it bigger than the other words.  There are different layouts you can choose and different color schemes.  I have made a simple planning page for the kids to use to come up with their words.  You can download it HERE for free.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

French Lick Blogger Retreat

Sometimes I feel like there aren’t other people that share my same CRAZY passion about teaching and making products for my students… and then I go to the French Lick Blogger Retreat and I’m in a room filled with a ton of them.  This is my second year going to this meet-up hosted by Holly from Ehle’s Kindergarten.  She has a great team of teachers that help her prepare for this amazing weekend.

My teaching partner Kelly and I took a half-day off of school to head to French Lick, Indiana.  We had about a 5 hour drive and arrived Friday evening.  We met a few people and had somewhat of a late night at the casino.  Let’s just say it’s a good thing we didn’t start the next day until 11:30.

The next day, was our “conference”.  We got to be inspired, eat lunch together, and go to a few round table discussions.  We had a little gift exchange among grade levels where I received a box with a poem written by Christina DeCarbo.  The box is used to put student creations (letters/pictures) etc.  or parent letters or anything that will brighten my day when things are a little overwhelming. 

 Amy and Nicole from TPT came to our retreat too!!!

This years theme:  Take your Passion and Make it Happen!

We had a little “auction” with some really AMAZING prizes from our Teacher Sponsors!  I even won a class set of seat sacks! 

Everyone got a TON of freebies from many different sponsors!

The best part of the weekend was the 80’s party!  Here are some fun pictures! 

 Richard Simmons (A.K.A. Greg from Kindergarten Smorgasbord) 
I can't even explain how much fun this weekend was!  I was able to connect with so many people and get a little "recharge" going into the end of the school year!
Saying good-bye was hard to do!

Kelly, Jonelle (A Place Called Kindergarten), and Me!

Here is a Rafflecopter where you can enter to win an awesome package from our sponsors!  A big thanks to Erin Condren, Go Noodle, Teachers Pay Teachers, Creative Clips, ESGI, Kwik Stix, OSMO, Udderly Smooth, Vera Bradley, Creative Teaching Press, Digi by Amy, Astrobrights, Better Life Bags and The Pencil Grip for their donations for our swag bags!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Leap Day Sale! February 29th ONLY!

I thought I would do a little sale for Leap Day- I mean why not??  Everything in my store will be 20% off- even my BUNDLES that are already discounted.  

I recently added my Guided Reading Level A Books, Lesson Plans, Activities, and Running Records. I am so excited about these!  They can be used for Guided Reading, RTI, or Intervention.  EVERYTHING you need is there- including the books.  They are in both color and black and white.  You can make copies to keep by laminating and binding or you can simply print and staple together.  

FARM ANIMALS is offered for FREE in my store so you can see exactly how these work!

I have already started on my LEVEL B Books!

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Tips for Teachers who use Teachers Pay Teachers

Last week, I did a “training” for any staff members who wanted to learn about Teachers Pay Teachers (TPT).  I was asked to do this after speaking with our Superintendent about TPT.  He didn’t really know about it and we soon realized there were many staff members who didn’t know anything about TPT.  My first thought was, how could this be??  Really- I don’t go a day without searching for something that I need for my class.  And so this training has now turned into a blog post and PDF of Tips that every teacher should know when using TPT.  I hope you find it helpful and please feel free to share with all of your co-workers.

**All of the pictures below are in a FREE PDF on Teachers Pay Teachers.  Feel free to share and download it from there for a hard copy!  You can click on any of the pictures below.

First you need to set up a FREE account.  If you are using TPT as a buyer, you just need to sign up for the basic plan.  Enter in your information to set up your account.

You do not want to miss out on the weekly newsletter or the daily e-mail about newly posted products by your favorite sellers!

When you leave feedback on your purchases, you earn credit.  You credit can be used at any time when you are checking out.  Simply enter the amount of credits you would like to use for that purchase.

To search by Common Core Standard, simple enter the standard into the search box.  For example: if I am looking up first grade measurement standard I would search for 1.MD.A.1.  All of the product that are tagged with this standard will show up in my search. 

Look at the feedback on the product to help you decide if this product is right for you.  

When you checkout, you can pay with credit card, Paypal, or P.O.  This is also when you redeem gift certificates, TPT credits, or use a coupon code when there is a TPT sale.

When you are in My Purchases, you can see if something has been revised.  If you buy a Growing Bundle, this is where you go to re-download and get the additional parts of the product.

Whenever you download a FREEBIE from the site, it is also "stored" on My Purchases.  This is an easy way to go back and find something that you may have already downloaded.  

This is how we are using our "classroom" money in our district.  It is easier to purchase a Gift Certificate and use it as needed throughout the school year.  If you have any other great ways of purchasing from TPT with school funds, I would love to hear about it!

TPT is really a pretty user-friendly website but I hope that the tips that I am sharing with you today will make it even easier to navigate and find exactly what you are looking for.  Happy searching!  Oh yeah, and if you are new to TPT, be aware:  YOU WILL GET ADDICTED!  

I'm linking up with iTeach K-2!

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