Only 16 more days left for me!  I know there are still some of you still in school (and those of you going year round!), so I thought I'd put together a fun linky to get you through the final days.

I'm starting with a little something from me . . . "Find-a-Friend" activities are a great way to keep kids moving and engaged in those final days of school.  I use them as a morning meeting activity, or a quick filler when we have a few minutes.  All you do is make enough copies for everyone in your class.  Students walk around the room and find someone (preferably a different person each time) who can say yes to one of the statements.  Then they write that person's name in the box. 
After everyone has filled their boxes (or after a set time), I like to call everyone together and do a "Stand Up/Sit Down."  I call out each statement and say something like, "Stand up if you have built a sandcastle." (Or whichever box I'm doing.)  Sometimes I get silly and say "Quack like a duck if you . . ." or "Jump up and down three times if you . . ."  It just depends on my mood.  And their mood.  Mostly their mood.  And how hot it is, of course.

You can download your freebie by clicking on the image below.
Looking for more fun freebies?  Check out the links below.  (Hopefully, there ARE links below when you read this.  If not, I apologize for the letdown.  You might want to check back later.  My blog is pretty small right now.  I'm hoping at least a few people know I'm here and can help those of us still counting down the days!)
Do you have a fun freebie with a summer or end-of-year theme you'd like to share? 
Link up with me!
And thanks for stopping by!

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Wow - I think Mother Nature is a little confused right now here in New England!  Last week it was almost 90 degrees and humid and this weekend it has been around 50 with wind and rain!  So much for the "unofficial kick-off to summer!"

Less than 20 days for my kiddos and we're getting ready to begin the countdown!  This past week we had our annual "Science Day" - students from our high school come down and - along with some help from volunteers! -  plan, develop and share science experiments with all our students.  It's a great day!

My seconds got to experience many different science concepts in an engaging and easy to understand way. 


It really was a great day!  After the "scientists" left, we did a quick reflection paper about we had learned.  I'm sharing it below, if you'd like a copy.
I also wanted to share a great site I found for doing easy but spectacular science experiments with kids.  It's from Science Bob.  Here's a sample video of making a lava lamp:

How cool is that!  I used to have a lava lamp.  I thought it was the greatest thing, too.   And I had one when they FIRST came out in the 70's... not when everything went retro in the last few years.  Oh the memories!

Oh good grief - now it is sunny, windy and raining all at once!  I certainly hope you all are having better weather than I am!  Oh - and don't forget that the wonderful teachers at TpT have put together some amazing bundles for sale to help the teachers affected by the tornadoes in Moore, OK.  Click on the link below to go to one of the bundles.
And don't forget to visit my store on Monday - I'm having a sale and donating all my profits that day to the Red Cross. 

Thanks for stopping by!

When I first heard about the devastating tornadoes that hit Moore, OK this past week, I was deeply saddened.  Once again we had to hear of little ones losing their lives, and of the terrifying moments children, teachers and the residents of Moore had to go through.  But, once again, out of the darkness comes the amazing stories of survival and hope.  What those teachers and staff members did to save the lives of so many students, is beyond amazing.  We know that each of us, if faced with same situation, would have done exactly the same.  It is part of being a teacher.
And, once again, out of that terrible day, come teachers - from across the country and beyond - wanting to help in any way they can.  The amazing teachers on Teachers Pay Teachers have put together a fundraiser to help the teachers affected by the Oklahoma tornado.
There are 4 bundles available - ranging from K-2 products, to clipart, to upper grade resources.  Each bundle is valued at well over $100.00, and will be made available for a $25.00 donation. These bundles will be available for a LIMITED TIME, beginning Friday, May 24 through Monday, June 3rd, 2013.
100% of the proceeds for this fundraising event is being collected by TPT, and will be distributed by check to the appropriate Moore Oklahoma School District Representative earmarked to specifically aid the teachers as they begin the process of rebuilding.

For more information, and to see details of what each bundle includes, click on the links below:
I have to say, there are some AMAZING resources in these bundles!  This TpT fundraiser was put into effect SO fast, and I'm so happy to be a part of it.  My "Find Someone Who Has - Place Value Bundle" is part of the K-2 Bundle 2.

In addition to the bundles, many teachers - including myself!- will be donating some or all of the proceeds from their TpT sales on Monday (Memorial Day) to help those affected by the tornado.  Everything in my store will be 10% off on Monday May 27 - it's a great time to take a few things off your wishlist!  Check out the blog hop below to see who else is joining the fundraising.
I'm off to purchase a bundle or two for myself.  What a great way to help fellow teachers, and receive some fantastic products to use in your classroom at the same time!
Thanks for stopping by!
I cannot believe it is the weekend already!  The end of the year is definitely getting closer - those crazy weeks filled with assemblies, field trips and end-of-the-year fun are fast approaching.

In an earlier post, I shared a quick math game my students enjoy doing.  This week we did another one my kiddos really enjoyed.  It became a favorite for our intervention block activities.  I'm not sure where I found it, but it's quite simple - and it really makes them think - a plus this time of year!

Roll 6 dice.  Take out the 1's and 5's.  Ones are worth 100 points and fives are worth 50 points.  You can choose to stop, or roll again (using the dice that weren't ones or fives.)  Keep rolling until you have no dice left - but if you roll and get NO ones or fives, you lose all your points from that round.  The person who gets to 1,000 points first is the winner.  Make sense?  Probably not.  It seemed easy to explain when I could model it.  You can modify it so it makes sense to you. 

I just noticed there are only girls in the pictures.  I do have boys in my class.  And I did take pictures of them.  But they were all blurry.  Boys move a lot more than girls.

We also worked on telling time to 5-minutes this week.  I was actually impressed with how well they did.  We did this unit after doing fractions and I think that really helped them understand the idea of the clock being in quarters - quarter of, quarter after, etc. 

We ended the week with a quick formative assessment (my administrator would be so proud of me) using book characters.  Students chose any book character they wanted and came up with four different things that character would do.  Then they decided on a time (including am or pm) it would happen.  Here are some examples.  (Do not grade the spelling - we were in a hurry.)

I love the one from the book, Teammates, about Jackie Robinson.  This kiddo really liked that book.  And I couldn't remember the name of the book with AJ as the character.  I know it's from those wacky school books.

If you would like to use the activity sheet with your kids, click on the picture below to download it.

I'm going to end this week with a peek into my closet.  I was talking with a couple teacher friends about blogging about school clothes - and they suggested I share shoe pictures!  Now, if you know me, you know shoes are my favorite part of an outfit.... along with cute tops... and accessories... so I thought each Friday (ok, Saturday this time) I'd share a photo or two of some fave shoes from the week.  Here are this week's picks:

I originally took the pictures with the shoes on my feet.  But I redid them.  I need a pedicure.  And some new toes.  They are not very photogenic.  The shoes looked better with my feet out of the picture.  I think I got the ones on the right at Kohls.  I'm not sure where the other ones came from.  Shoes are so fun!
Thanks for stopping by!
Happy weekend!  I had a great time shopping this week during the Teachers Pay Teachers 2-day sale.  I bought a lot.  More than I realized.  What fun!  I'm linking up with Blog-Hoppin' today to share with you some of the great resources I found to get me through the rest of the year.
I'm not going to share everything I bought.  I chose a few great products I thought you would love.  Not only would it take you forever and a day to read this post, but I don't think I should publicly share how much I spent.  (It really wasn't THAT much. )

This first one is my absolute favorite!  I am telling you, if you teach second grade (good for end of the year or stronger readers) or third or fourth... wow.  I found this from a recommendation on another blog.  She raved about it.  I am SOOOO glad I purchased it.
There are 10 well-written articles on a variety of animals - all with nonfiction text features.  Each article has 7 different common core aligned activities that focus on close reading.  This is amazing.  I can't wait to use these with my students.  Click on the picture above to go to her blog post to see everything you get.  Wow again.
I also picked up a few end-of-the-year resources.  This one, from Primary Punch, will help us review all the common core strands.  I got the LA one, too, of course!  Gotta have the matching set!
And since we'll need something fun to do after we work so hard....
Of course, I also stocked up on clipart, backgrounds, borders, etc.... I'm so excited to use everything I purchased.  No buyer's remorse here!
And since everyone is in the sharing mood lately, I'll end by sharing my newest "Fix-It" freebie.  I was going to wait and share this later, but since so many of you are focusing on summertime now, I figured I'd better get it posted before it's too late!

There are 12 sentences with a variety of mistakes - grammar, spelling, punctuation, etc.  Students find the errors and write the sentences correctly on the recording sheet.  I included a set of sentences that are "fixed" so students can self-check their work.  Click on the picture to go to my little store and download your freebie.
Whew!  That was a lot of sharing.  I really liked visiting different blogs and seeing what people purchased this week.  I found some great ideas.  What was your favorite purchase?
Thanks for stopping by!
Oh boy.  I saved my own shopping for the big Teachers Pay Teachers sale until tonight.  I've shopped twice already and I need to STOP!  Thank goodness everything I purchased is digital, because I would have a MAJOR hoarding problem . . . I promised myself I would only buy things I would really use from now until the end of the year . . . or if it was really cute clipart . . . or something I just HAD to have . . . you see my problem . . .
Oh well.  At least my kiddos appreciate cute clipart.  They are fond of looking at a new activity sheet, or Smartboard lesson and saying, "Oooohh.. that's so cute!"  (You have to have the adorable second grade slight lisp because all your teeth are not in .  . See?  much better...) 
We've been hard at work on our fishing theme these past two weeks.  It's a favorite of mine and we really played it up this year.  Not one, not two, but THREE writing pieces with a fishing theme.  All Common Core aligned - informational (how to catch a fish), narrative (a story about catching a unique fish) and opinion (is it fun to fish?).  Throw in a few ELA and math centers and an easy to create fishy glyph (of course, you have to add the catchy jingle for the fish sandwich from that fast food place!) - and you have my oh-so-fun fishing bundle!
There's so much in here I couldn't fit it on one slide.  Click on the picture above to go to the item in my TpT store and download the preview to see everything you get. 
And the best thing is, it's on sale through tomorrow (Thursday May 9) for 20% off - add the extra discount you get from TpT (code TAD13) through tonight and you can save even more!
And just to get you more excited, here's a picture of someone in my classroom who decided to go all out for this unit.  You can't write about fishing if you don't have the correct fishing vocabulary - and the best way to teach vocabulary is with the real thing!
Now, I'm not telling if this is me or not.  And I covered the face to protect the innocent... but I will say that my students were very impressed that I actually had my own fishing pole and tackle box!
Just in case you still need the link to Teachers Pay Teachers, here it is.  Everything is on sale until midnight tonight - and some stores have extended their sale!  Visit my store, then take a look at other great resources.  Have fun!
Thanks for stopping by!

Happy Teacher Appreciation Day to everyone!  It's nice to have a day (or a week!) to celebrate all that we do.  I have gotten a couple very nice notes from parents thanking me for all I do for their child.  I looked around my room today as my students were working, and thought once again how lucky I am to be doing something I absolutely love. 

I remember quite a few years back, I was helping to interview candidates for a teaching position at our school.  This young woman, pretty much straight out of college, with more enthusiasm and excitement than I had seen in a while, was asked to tell how she decided to become a teacher.  I will never forget her response.

She spoke of a "teaching gene," that is some people's blood.  You are born with it.  Teaching is all you have wanted to do.  And you've never considered anything else.  Teaching comes natural to these wonderful and amazing people.  The classroom is like a second home - it is where you feel most comfortable and where you know you are meant to be.

That really stuck with me.  I do have that teaching gene.  I could not imagine going to work every day and doing anything else.  I don't need a special day to know that what I do makes a difference - although it is nice to hear it once in a while! 

I'd like to share a story - familiar to many of you - that to me, really expresses what being a teacher means.

Enjoy your special week.  And don't forget - Teachers Pay Teachers is having a spectacular 2-day sale today and tomorrow (May 7-8)!  The link below will take you to my little store... but be sure to take a peek at what everyone else has to offer!
Thanks for stopping by! 
It's time to celebrate teaching!  This week is Teacher Appreciation week and I know how hard each of us works - all day, every day.  I also know that if there's one thing teachers love more than finding new materials and resources to use in our classrooms, it's finding them on SALE!  Teachers Pay Teachers is throwing a HUGE 2-day site-wide sale Tuesday May 7 - Wednesday May 8. 

Click on the image to visit my store

You can get up to 28% off your total purchase just by using the code "TAD13" when you checkout.  Many sellers have their entire stores on sale - including me!  I'm offering 20% off everything in my little store - so you can get the full 28% off when you use the code.  You can click on the button above to go directly to my store.  Then look around the rest of the site and see what other teachers have to offer.  I am always A-MAZ-ED at how creative everyone is.

I will be back this week with a freebie or two - just to show I appreciate each and every one of you - and to share some pictures of our fishing writing unit.  Boy, has that unit been a hit! 

I know our wonderful PTA is doing something for us for lunch sometime this week.  They usually have a couple other sweet treats, as well.  Does your school do anything for Teacher Appreciation Week?

Thanks for stopping by!

I am so happy it is Friday!  This week really did go SO fast, and because of that I feel like I didn't really get done what I planned.  There's always next week though!  (and the week after that... and after that.... 7 more, to be exact... blah!)

I thought I would end this week by linking up with Farley and my very first "Currently."
First things first.. I love being able to keep the windows open through the evening now.  It still gets pretty cool at night, but it's nice to work and hear the sounds of the outside... and some 80's music.  I admit, I'm an 80s girl.  Give me some Journey or Def Leppard and I'm grooving it. (That might be more of a 70's term... I wouldn't know, because I'm an 80's girl.)

I am definitely loving the fact that it is light out so much longer.  It makes me feel not so guilty for staying at school and getting work done when I can come home and not feel like it's bedtime.  That leads to another issue though....

Since it's light out for so long now, I feel guilty putting on my pajamas when it's daylight.  I don't have people popping over every night for a drink and some hors d'oeuvres (had to look that up), so that's not the issue.  It just doesn't feel quite right...  which leads me to my next thought...

I really need new pajamas.  My niece and nephews gave me a pair of footie pajamas for Christmas.   I loved them.  Warm feetsies (new word)... hoodie... pure comfort.  I liked them so much I bought another pair myself.  Anyway... it was so nice to come home - when it was dark - and put on my footie pajamas and do some work.  Not now.  Not only is it now too LIGHT to put on pajamas when I come home, but it is too warm. 

I'm thinking I need new pajamas to come home to.  Any suggestions?

Although I am needing new pajamas... I am also needing another day this weekend.  Tomorrow is a "work day" (school, TpT, etc...) and Sunday is a family event all day and evening.  That leaves me no time to relax... eat ice cream, read trashy magazines and enjoy the day.  Just one more day would be perfect.

I can look forward to many of those days, though, this summer.  I have a TON of new books on my Kindle (I upgraded to the paperwhite one at Christmas and I love it.  Much better for reading outside.)  I find I don't read anything that is not school related for most of the school year.  I am not one of those people who can read for 10 minutes, then put the book down and come back later.  I need time devoted to reading.  (Those little 10 minute times are better devoted to Words or Scramble With Friends... or mini-golf, which is what I have been playing a lot on my phone lately.)

I'm also looking forward to beach time with friends, and going fishing.  Not real "get out the waders and let's hook a big one!" kind of fishing... just sitting on the dock, or in the boat on the lake and fishing for fun.  It's very relaxing.  Maybe it would be even better in my footie pajamas....

Enjoy the weekend, and thanks for stopping by!

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