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Friday, November 30, 2012

100 follower giveaway!

I made it! I can't believe I started this blog just a few months ago and reached 100 followers so quickly. To share my excitement, I am hosting a giveaway. I have 15 amazing bloggers who are helping me with this giveaway, and there are two chances to win!

For the first giveaway, you can win one of these AMAZING pencil sharpeners from Classroom Friendly Supplies that every teacher really needs. It now comes in blue, green, or RED. You choose the color!

I blogged about it a while back here, and my students now even comment that it's the most awesome pencil sharpener ever. They actually break pencils sometimes just to be able to use it. It's so fast and quiet, and the pencils are perfectly sharpened!

AND the following wonderful ladies (along with myself) are giving winner's choice of items from their TpT stores:


Oh' boy fourth grade

Kimberly's store

Fourth Grade Lemonade
Caitlyn's store

Alison's store

Teaching Maddeness
Amanda's store

Run Miss Nelsons got the Camera
Michele is actually offering 2 items from her store!

And since Christmas is my FAVORITE time of the year, the second giveaway is all Christmas related:

I will be giving away my Christmas literacy centers

Haley is offering her brand new Christmas math centers! Don't they look so cute?

Tori is offering her new Holiday Time Pack.

Kristen is offering her Season's Readings: 15 Festive Reader's Responses

Jackie and Danielle are offering their Magic Tree House: Christmas in Camelot pack. I have this and LOVE it! So detailed!

Teachin Little Texans
Dixie (who happens to be just shy of 100 followers herself) is donating her Rudolph creative writing unit.

Lauren is offering her Reindeer Reading packet and Opinion/Persuasive Writing Oreo Style.

Andrea is donating her Gingerbread Beginning and Ending Sounds.

Okay, so here are your chances! I will leave this giveaway up until next Friday, December 7.  Please share it with your friends, and good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, November 29, 2012

I've been featured and digital papers!

I was featured again last night! Amanda from Teaching Maddeness features new bloggers every Wednesday,  so go check out her blog! Plus she's ending a few giveaways this week, and there's still time to enter 4 of them (or at least 3). One is for a laminator that I'm really excited about!

Also, I just made my very first digital clip art items, and I think they're so cute! These 10 digital papers are now available in my store for FREE! As usual, feel free to pin and share (hint, hint). I  hope you like them as much as I do!

Then I also created two more packs of paper now that I've gotten the hang of it. These are available for $2 each!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

More TpT Products, Christmas freebie, and last day for the sale

I know this is the second post, but I wanted to have something more positive to say. Plus I decided to keep myself busy during my free time and uploaded a few more items to my TpT store, especially since the big sale ends tonight!

I started loading some science interactive notes that I made a few years back while I was still teaching 4th grade. We have Promethean boards in all of our classrooms, so I wanted to make flipcharts that went along with the notes as well. There are 7 different units (most are $3 regular - $2.40 right now), or you can buy the entire bundle for $18 (or $14.40 today only!). Actually, they would be even cheaper because that's just with my 20% off sale. Don't forget to add the promo code: CMT12 at check out for 10% off of that price! The sale ends tonight at midnight! I'm only going to link to the huge bundle, but you can go to my store to find all of the little units as well.

I may have mentioned this before, but I LOVE Christmas! When I was younger, we lived in south Mississippi - very close to Louisiana, where cajun culture is prominent. I remember every Christmas Eve, they would read this book called The Cajun Night Before Christmas on the news. My dad eventually bought the book, and it became a family tradition for him to read it every year. We LOVED it!

Cajun Night Before Christmas (The Night Before Christmas Series)

When Steven and I got married, we came across the Irish Night Before Christmas and bought it.

Irish Night Before Christmas, An (The Night Before Christmas Series)

Last year, I decided it would be fun to read a few of these versions to my students and then have them create their own Night Before Christmas story. So I began putting together a little format to follow. Then I also searched to find as many versions as I could that already existed. I've found 27 so far! This item is a freebie in my store! Please pin it, share it, and rate me!

Have a wonderful evening! I'm on my way home to hopefully relax a little (and maybe do some online shopping).

When tragedy strikes

Yesterday we learned that one of our 3rd grade teachers passed away unexpectedly. Today will be a very difficult day for students and staff. Please be in prayer for our school during this difficult time. She had been teaching in New Kent schools since 1989 and was loved by many.

I wondered about ways that I would share this issue with my students were I still in the regular classroom, so I browsed the internet a little this morning. I did find a website with a list of tips here. However, I was really looking for a good book to read with them. I work with grades 3-5

I did find this book listed on one website, so I'm going to see what it's all about. The website says it talks about a class dealing with the unexpected loss of their teacher after she is killed in a car accident. I felt like it was the most fitting I could find in this situation.
I Remember Miss Perry

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Liebster Award!

Wow, I feel so loved!! I'm still visiting family, but I wanted to quickly go ahead and do this. I had six wonderful ladies nominate my blog for the Liebster award AND I surpassed 100 followers! Thank you to Lori at The Reinspired Teacher,  Hilary at Second Grade is Out of This World, Gina at Beach Sand and Lesson Plans, Richie at Ribbons, Recipes, and Rhymes, Michele from Coffee Cups and Lesson Plans, and Caitlyn from Fourth Grade Lemonade!
Here are the rules:
1. You must post 11 random things about yourself.
2. Answer the questions that the nominator set for you.
3. Create 11 questions for the people you nominate.
4. Choose 11 other blogs with fewer than 200 followers to nominate and link them in your post.
5. You cannot “tag back” the other blog, but leave a comment on this post with the URL of your Liebster post so I can learn more about you & see who you nominate.
Alright, so 11 random things about me:

  1. I used to be TERRIFIED of dogs. Now I have two 55 pound hounds that I adore!
  2. I fought being a teacher for years, but I've always known I wanted to work with kids.
  3. My dad is a preacher.
  4. I HATE masks. They really creep me out, and I won't step foot near an amusement park in the fall because of them.
  5. I love college football and take pride in being pretty knowledgeable about it!
  6. Sometimes I choose the other team just to be a pain.
  7. I'm the quietest person in my family (they're VERY loud!)
  8. I did color guard in high school and actually coached it this year.
  9. The only reason I started eating veggies is because Steven told me we couldn't have a baby until I did. I learned to like steamed broccoli and green beans.
  10. I have a blonde streak at the bottom of my hair (apparently this is true for lots of redheads)
  11. I think Vin Diesel is hideous and have always thought that. Not too much a fan of Chipper Jones either. Sorry if you disagree.

And since it would take me FOREVER to answer all 44 questions, I'm going to do the ones from Lori since she sent it to me first.
1. What is something you've always wanted to do but haven't tried yet? I really want to be in a flash mob. If you live near me and know of one, please let me know! It's on my 30 before 30 list at my personal blog, and I'd love to check it off!
2. If you couldn't be a teacher, what would you choose for your career? I went to college thinking about being a pharmacist, but I remembered how much I hated science. I think I might enjoy
3. What was your very first job? I began working for my church day care helping sweep when I was 15. Then I stayed there and began working with kids from age 17 through the summer after my first year of college. I loved it there!
4. What was the last book you read (personally, not for your class or children)? The Lovely Bones. I'm working on Unglued by Lisa Terkeust right now. Great book!
5. What is your favorite animal? Such a hard choice! I like quite a few for different (albeit random) reasons - moose (only male) and turtles are up there though
6. How long have you been blogging? I started truly blogging back in March of last year at The Dalton Gang. This blog has been up since September!
7. What is your favorite tv show? The Big Bang Theory - I can't get enough of it!
8. What is one item you can't live without? My phone. I think I might be a little addicted...
9. What is your favorite food? So healthy, but chocolate ice cream. Nothing mixed in.
10. Are you an introvert or an extrovert? Extrovert all the way! I can't function when I'm not around other people.
11. Do you play games on the computer? if so, what is your favorite? I don't really. I used to play crossword puzzles and Sudoku when I had more time. Oh, and I did Sorority Life and Mafia Wars for a little while. That was fun!

I had a lot of fun with the questions! Here they are:

  1. What's your favorite thing to do in your spare time?
  2. Which appliance best represents you and why?
  3. If you were on death row, what would you choose as your last meal?
  4. What's your favorite Christmas read aloud?
  5. Coke or Pepsi?
  6. If you had to choose one song as your theme song, what would it be?
  7. What famous actor/actress would you have play you in the story of your life?
  8. What's your favorite vacation destination?
  9. What made you decide you wanted to teach?
  10. What do you most want for Christmas?
  11. If you could have any dessert every day and not have to worry about calories, what would it be?

It was hard to find 11 bloggers who hadn't already been found, so if I duplicated, I'm sorry!

Finally, Amanda at Teaching Maddeness is having a giveaway! Today is day 6, and there have been so many great prizes already. Go back and enter them all!

And keep your eyes peeled for a giveaway coming soon! I've got to get things organized first, and I won't do that until I'm back home. We leave tomorrow morning. Oh, and if you've tried to download my Christmas literacy centers and are having problems, I'm aware. Unfortunately I can't fix it until I'm home as well. That's my goal for Monday morning. Sorry for the inconvenience!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

I'm Thankful for YOU!!

I'm a little late getting around to this, but I thought it would be appropriate to post on Thanksgiving anyway. Don't worry, most of this was already written a few days ago.

Thanks to Stephanie from Teaching in Room 6 for hosting this linky party! I started blogging back in March of last year at The Dalton Gang when the girls from my small group all had blogs. I don't remember exactly what teacher blog I first discovered, but I quickly began blogging more and more about my teacher stuff (although there was a lot about Keagan as well). Over the summer, I felt like it was time for me to separate my personal life from my teaching life in the blogging world, so this blog was born in September.

I am thankful for SO many bloggers! Here are a few of my favorites:


I discovered Andrea over the summer when I found out I was going to be switching positions to become a reading specialist. I searched blogger for other reading specialists and hit the jackpot with Andrea. Not only do we share positions, but she's a fellow Virginian! We have so much in common, and I hope to get to meet her soon!

Fourth Grade Lemonade

Caitlyn found me, and I'm so glad she did! She teaches fourth grade (my true love) in Virginia, so we have a lot of common experiences. She's got a lot of great ideas, and her products are beautiful!

Farley is my role model! She's hilarious, and I want to be her friend! I love participating in her monthly currently party, and it really helps to build my following.

In other news, I WON Third Grade Tidbit's giveaway! I started getting all these emails yesterday while we were driving to GA. So excited!

Okay, I'm off to spend time with the family. Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Sale, Christmas products, and Giveaway news

I don't know if you've heard yet, but TpT is participating in Cyber Monday, and I'm going to be a part of it!

Graphic by Surfing to Success. Isn't it cute?

TpT is offering 10% off all items, and individual sellers are putting their items at 20%. Fill your shopping cart now to save it for Monday (and Tuesday). Then type in the promo code CMT12 at check out! I've been working on my Christmas products and already have two live.

My Christmas Literacy Centers include 5 reading comprehension activities and 4 vocabulary centers. I LOVE the graphics from KPMdoodles!

My second activity is BRAND new - I just finished it and uploaded it onto TpT this morning.

It correlates with Kim Norman's book The Great Christmas Crisis (this is the author who came to visit a few weeks ago).
The Great Christmas Crisis

I put together a cute little elf writing crafitivity, a word recognition game (using words from the book), and a set of sequencing cards. I hope you enjoy it!
Isn't my little elf so cute?

Also, Tori is having her second giveaway of the week to celebrate 500 followers. Go check it out, and keep an eye out for the rest!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Context clues and a giveaway!

My third graders have been working on context clues, and I wanted to share a few books and resources that I've found and enjoyed. Both of the books have words in a foreign language, but they give enough clues for the students to decode the words.

I bought this book when I first started teaching. My first job was in a summer school, and one of my students  knew very little English. I searched for any book that looked interesting and had both Spanish and English for me to work with her. This is such a cute story! It's the Spanish version of The Little Red Hen, so the students can make a lot of connections. When I used this book, I stumbled across this little resource from Go Fourth! with Mrs. Owens. The book had an example of all these clues, so it was perfect!

Today, I went back into one of the classes to review, so I needed another good resource. I got on my trusty TpT and searched "context clues" for freebies, and I found this little store with only 6 items, but I really liked this resource. 

This chart is intended to be used with Jon Scieszka's Baloney (Henry P.) to practice using context clues

Sorry I couldn't get a better picture, but this is from my pinning since I don't think Erin has a blog to link a picture to. By the way, I'm her only follower, so be sure to give her some love when you download this resource!

Anyway, what you may not be able to see is that these are a list of words from the book Baloney (Henry P.) by Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith (love them). 

The book is about a little alien who is once again late for school, and he tells his teacher this outrageous lie to try to convince her not to put him in permanent detention! He uses all kinds of words from real foreign languages (and some made-up words as well) in his story. The worksheet I linked to above lists all of these words with a place for students to put the clue, what they believe the word means, and then to check if they were right or wrong at the end of the story. The kids LOVED it!

The best thing about both of these resources is that they are absolutely FREE! I don't know about you, but money is tight at my house, and I need all the freebies I can get.

I also wanted to share a giveaway that I found this morning. Gina has 3 opportunities to win, and there are some great prizes!

In other news, I'm ALMOST there myself! As of now, I'm sitting at 93 followers, so I want to start planning my own giveaway. If you would be interested in helping out, please let me know!