Rearranging Guided Math

I am so HAPPY!!!!!   I am so very lucky this year that I have lots of adult hands in my classroom.  Right now we have three (yes, count em, THREE )adults in our classroom during our math block.  Myself, co-teacher and a parapro (who is a actually a certified teacher- lucky us!) are all available at this time.  We have just had the extra adult since last Monday and it is PERFECT! To better use all this awesome adult help we have rearranged our math block. Here is our new schedule:

Monday- Whole group lesson
We use this time to introduce the skill we are focusing on that week.  After we give an overview and lesson (this week it was the conversation hearts adding and subtracting worksheet I shared here) we give a pretest. We give a pretest to determine groups.  We have 21 students so each group gets about 7 kids (give or take).  We do our best to ability group into these three groups.

Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday
No whole group lesson at all!  We break into small groups for about 40 minutes (I know, really.  I get FORTY minutes with a small group of kids!).  Then we give students an independent assignment.  The para then pulls about 3 children that are not independent and reviews and covers the skills they need specifically.  My partner pulls small groups if they have trouble and I float helping kids as trouble arises.  When students finish their independent work, they turn it in and have an assigned activity. Usually kids have about 15- 20 minutes for this time.   Students are either completing an All By Myself activity, Helping Others With Math Activity or playing a Math Game.  Helping Others with Math group then comes to me and I help them (or observe them) complete a word problem in their math journal before moving to partner work.

You can read about how I organize the M.A.T.H. acronym here.  If anyone would like more details about the materials for Guided Math or the activities for Helping Others, Math Games and All By Myself, please comment and I will try to write up a post about it.  It has been a GREAT system.

We post test and we teach some kind of new math game.  I usually find these games online or I often make my own.  Many are posted in my Teachers Pay Teachers store.  I also have several posted for free on my website.

I know it is an unusual set up with all the extra hands, but it has been SO helpful!  Please let me know if you want any more examples, pictures or information.  But I must say, I am one happy math teacher!  I wish we ALL had these kinds of ratios!

Click here for this great pack of FREE math centers, plus get tips and updates from me!



Fractions Freebie!

In third grade students need to learn to identify fractions and also be able to add and subbtract fractions with like denominators. My kids learn SO much better with manipulatives (as do most kids) and I wanted something hands on and interesting.

I did this activity last year and tweaked it. Hopefully it will work even better. Students will use a box of conversation hearts to identify fractions and add and subtract fractions.

* Fonts by Kevin and Amanda and Clipart by KPM Doodles

The first sheet I will use to model with on the Promethean board with my own box of conversation hearts.

After I model it for the students, I will give each student a box and a worksheet that is *almost* identical but a different number of conversation hearts to subtract.

Happy Sunday!


Winner, Winner Chicken Dinner!

Congratulations to the Valentine's Day Graphing: Bar Graphs and Line Plot Graphs winners!

Congratulations to Delighted, Jennifer, and Kala!  I am off to contact each of you! Thank you so much to everyone that entered!

I have put this mini two day unit in my Teachers Pay Teachers store for $3.00!
Click here if you would like to purchase a copy!  Thank you!



Whooo Hooo! I am Ahead of the Game!!!

Whoo Hoo!  I am ahead of the game!  Yay! Go me!

My house is clean...wait, no it is not.

All my laundry is done....wait, no it is not.

My lesson plans are all done for this week...wait, no they are not.


So what DID I do?

I did get my latest Teachers Pay Teachers item finished AND it is a Valentine's Day activity.  That is almost ready a MONTH in advance, people.  That is a record for me!

I am still doing the finishing touches and my wonderful editor is checking it out for me. So it is *thisclose* to being done.

This is a Valentin's Day mini (very, very mini) unit on graphing.  This is a two day (I said really mini, didn't I?) unit on line plots and bar graphs with conversation hearts.  Included in the packet are a bar graph and line plot graph to model with, a bar graph and line plot graph for students to create (with a scale of 2), and a completed bar graph with questions and a completed line plot graph with questions. These can be used as an assessment and an answer key is included.  The questions from the mini lesson match up the questions in the independent/ completed graphs so students will be exposed to this style of questions.

To celebrate having something done AHEAD of time (the angels are singing and the heavens have parted) I am doing a give away.   I will randomly draw three names to win a free copy of this unit.  In order to enter please follow my blog and leave a comment.  For a second entry, follow my Teachers Pay Teachers store and leave a comment!

I hope everyone has a wonderful, short week!


Geometry Freebie!

Freebie Fridays

She's A-L-I-V-E!  I am sorry I have been MIA the last week.  For some reason I have been SO tired.  It is like I can't get my teaching mojo back this week.  I am so grateful for the long weekend to recover!  This was the longest four day week ever!

I wanted to share a freebie that I did not include in my geometry unit because it was simply getting too big and I wanted to be done with it.  Ever feel this way?

We have been studying circles, mostly focusing on vocabulary.  In third grade students need to know radius, diameter, center, and circumference.  For this activity we went over the vocabulary using the geometry dictionary from the unit.  You could also define the words on the board and draw a picture instead.  My fabulous partner came up with the idea to relate diameter and radius to the size of the d and the r.  For example, diameter is a long line all the way across the circle through the center and the "d" is made with a long line.  The radius is a short line from the center to an outside point and the "r" is made with a short line.  Get it?  My kids all went, "Ahhh," when we explained this!

The googly eye is hidden under the yarn, but it is there!!  The student crossed out the upper- case letters D and R to make it match our saying!  I thought she was so smart, that I went back and made the blackline master all lower-case too!

Then we gave students 3 colors of yarn and a googly eye.  I would have rather used buttons, but didn't have any so a googly eye it was!

Students then use one color of yarn to glue down and create a diameter, another color to glue down and create a radius and a final color for the circumference.  Then students used the googly eye as the center.  Then students created a key for each yarn color. I like this activity because it made the learn kinesthetic.  A large portion of my class has some kind of language disorder or speaks another language so any way we can bring vocabulary to life, the better!

I hope you guys have a fantastic LONG weekend!

Click here for this great pack of FREE math centers, plus get tips and updates from me!



Love to Joplin Linky Party

DeeDee over at Mrs. Wills Kindergarten is throwing an amazing linky party to help teachers in need.

  Teachers in Joplin, Missouri lost so much in the tornadoes last year and are having to rebuild. Although it has been eight months I am sure many people are struggling to rebuild what was lost, and this includes the thousands of dollars teachers lost when classrooms were destroyed.  My classroom is my second home and I have invested s much.  I would be heart broken to lose it all.

  DeeDee thought it would build their spirits to send them some units from TPT and Teacher's Notebook. You can join in the party by clicking the heart below. It's amazing to see the blogging community come together to help other teachers. I hope you can help out!


Geometry Unit WINNERS!

So much to type, but so tired tonight after my first day back.  I am jotting down, "Post a REAL blog post!" on my to do list!  Will do it soon!

Congratulations to the winners of my Geometry Supplemental Unit!

Congratulations Lindsey, Mindy and Nikki8!  Nikki, if you will please email me at I will sent the prize to you!  Lindsey and Mindy, I am off to email it to you! Thank you so much for all the comments!


Geometry Unit Give Away and a Bunch of Other Random Stuff

Hi Everyone!

This is going to be a quick post.  My mother in law is very sick and hospitalized (she is getting MUCH better).  My husband has been with her since Friday so I have been playing the role of "single Mommy" for the last few days.  It is SO HARD.  All those single moms have all my admiration right now! I can do it knowing there is an end in eight, but if this was ALL the time?  I would go crazy!

I finished my HUGE, geometry supplemental unit.  It turned out to be 77 pages from start to finish!  Yikes!  It is currently for sale on TpT for $6.00.  Here is a picture/ preview I posted earlier.
Here is the description straight from TpT:

This 77 page packet includes vocabulary cards, a student dictionary, three games, two sorting activities, two creative art projects and a short assessment.

Included in this packet is
-cover page (page 1)

-A Note to the Teacher (page 2-3)

-Kaboom! Game: Students identify and name a geometric figure when given a picture.(page 4-12)

-Geometry Concentration Game: Students match the geometric term to a picture. An answer key is provided for students that may have difficulty. (Page 13-17)

-My Geometry Dictionary-An individual student dictionary that students can complete whole class. Students complete the cloze passage definitions and draw a picture. (Page 18-47)

-Vocabulary cards- 24 cards with definitions and a matching picture. The vocabulary cards have the same definitions needed to complete the My Geometry Dictionary.(Page 48-56)

- Angle Sort- Students sort angles into acute, obtuse or right angles. Students then create a 3 flap book (black line master NOT included, but directions ARE included) and glue the angles under the correctly labeled sort. Printable angles and labels are provided. (Page 57-59)

-Triangle Sort- students sort triangles into scalene, isosceles, or equilateral triangles. Students then create a 3 flap book (black line master NOT included, but directions ARE included) and glue the triangles under the correctly labeled sort. Printable triangles and labels are provided. (Page 60-62)

-Geometric Robot and Geometric Snowman: Two creative craftivities where students create either a robot or snowman when given specific shapes and criteria to include. A grading rubric is included for both projects. (Page 63-66)

-Geometry Quick Write: Partner game in which students use white boards and draw the geometric figure when given the term. (Page 67-70)

-Assessment- A short 7 question mini assessment is included that covers triangles, circles, and polygons. An answer key is included. (Page 71- 74)

-A Thank You Page (page 75)

-A Credits page (page 76)

-A copyright page (page 77)

I will be giving away 3 copies to 3 different people!  Leave a comment below and I will randomly choose three people- sometime soon!

I have been given several awards from a few bloggers and I am oh so grateful. Thank you so much.  I feel so honored! As soon as things return to normal I will post about them, AND the clutter challenge from the Clutterfree Classroom.

I have so much to type, but have the sweetest toddler that needs my attention.  Hopefully my mother in law will be better soon and things will get back to normal SOON!


Ringing in the New Year with a Ring of Bloggy Giveaways WINNERS!

Thank you so much to everyone that joined our big giveaway!  I am so excited to see so many new followers!  It has made my week!  Now, on to the good stuff...the WINNERS!

Congratulations to the three THIRD PLACE winners.  They may choose any ONE item from any of the stores listed below!

Congratulations Gina!

Congratulations Crayons and Curls!

Congratulations katieneu!

Congratulations to the TWO second place winners. They may choose any TWO items from any of the stores listed below!
Congratulations to Bobbi!

Congratulations Delighted!

Congratulations to the FIRST place winner! You may choose ONE item from EACH store below!

Congratulations Elisabeth!
I have emailed all the winners!

Winners, here are the stores to choose from below!



Today is the Big Day!!!

Hello bloggers! Welcome to all my newest followers....I'm so happy you've joined me!

So, today is the big day....the New Year Giveaway winners will be announced tonight at 8 pm. Stay tuned to see if you've won the big prize!!


Honest Opinions...

Alright, I am looking for honest opinions here, shoot me down if necessary. 

Of course I have to begin this with a story, or it would simply not be a *me* kinda post.  Last night I was browsing on my Kindle looking for a new story to read (side note- any recommendations out there?  I LOVED Mortal Instrument Series and the new Infernal Devices Series.  I would love some more books like this!)  I was reading the reader's reviews sections to see if the book looked good.  One review caught my eye.  It said that the the reviewer was given an free copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.  I didn't think anything of it, until I read it over, and over. Mostly this was reviews on smaller books, that are not necessarily mainstream (yet) or the authors are not hugely famous.

Then the light bulb clicked.  What if we did this in the blogging world?  This is where I need your opinions.

What if we provided a few people with advanced, free copies of our units and items from our Teacher Notebook or Teachers Pay Teachers in exchange for a blog HONEST review and review on the Teacher Notebook or Teachers pay Teachers site?
  •   Do people do this? 
  •  Should we (I mean specifically, me- apparently I am a *wee bit* self centered) do this? 
  •  Would this be in poor taste? 
  • If it is appropriate, who would want to be the blogger/ reviewer?
Is this not what the teaching community is all about? I don't know, but I thought I would throw it out there.

Comment.  Throw tomatoes at me and tell me I am a selfish, money-grubbing scoundrel. I can put on my fuzzy slippers and robe (so, so, so ,so very thankful to still be on break- I am blocking out the return to school next week) and deal with it.

 I hope everyone back in school is having an easy first few days back.  If you are anything like me those first few days involve: wake, work, home, crash and that is about it.  For some reason the days after a break are almost as tiring as the beginning of the school year!!!!!!


The Unit that Would Never End

I recently posted that I would be returning to Geometry in math after the break because I didn't feel my students had a real grasp of the terms. Thank you so MUCH for all the comments!  They were so helpful!  I started creating a few activities...and then one thing led to another and another and another.  Before I knew it, the unit was almost 80 pages long?!  It is just supposed to be SUPPLEMENTAL, Mandy.  Sheesh.  But I like geometry and it is easy to do LOTS of things with it.  Plus, so much of elementary geometry is vocabulary based and many students have difficulty with this.

I am not quite ready to post it yet.  I still have to do some editing and send it to my friend (Hi, Katie!) who does an AWESOME job of editing for me  since I am terrible at editing AND typing,  but I thought I would show a "sneak peek."
This packet includes vocabulary cards, a student dictionary, three games, two sorting activities, two creative art projects with rubrics, and a short assessment.

I am hoping to have it posted by the end of this week!

It will also be a choice for our BIG, AWESOME giveaway! Have you entered yet? : )

For those back to school; good luck! I hope you have a wonderful first day back!  I am so grateful to be on break until the 9th. I have been sick for most of the break : ( and hope to start ticking things off my to do list now that I am feeling better!


Welcome 2012!!!

Mor at A Teacher's Treasure is having a New Years Resolution  linky party.  I thought to celebrate the first day of the New Year, I better start planning some goals!

Personal Goals:
1.  Lose WEIGHT!  I have gained so much weight the last four years- it is crazy.  The sad part it that I have lost all my baby weight.  I was just fat to start with.  Sigh.  I can really tell the weight is taking a toll on my body.  I have been sick pretty much since Thanksgiving and I really think it is a combination of a nasty virus, bad eating habits, lack of sleep, and little exercise.  This is a HUGE deal for me this year.

2.  Get back on the coupon wagon!  I did so well with this and then I got busy...and stopped. I need to get back on it!  A few weeks ago I saved over $25 and remembered why I used to do this!

That's is it.  No other goals because I really, really want to focus on number 1.

Professional Goals:
1. Get organized!  I feel like I am constantly swimming in paperwork!  I need to get better at filing as I go and organize my back "crap" shelf.

2.  I have really been enjoying writing units for Teachers Pay Teachers.  I want to focus on this a bit more since we will be implementing Common Core next year and I want to be prepared.

3.  Finish that dang book!  I have been writing a Guided Math book for almost a year now.  It has teacher information, organizational pages, but most importantly many, many, ready to go math centers and activities that teachers would just have to print and laminate.  I  think I have over 20 games planned.  I just need to finish it!  I have half of the games done and all of the games and activities planned. That is my goal for this summer.

4.  Figure out what to do with my website, (used to be I am not sure what I want to do with it.  It is so big that it is getting hard to manage and really needs a fresh new look.  I want to transfer all the activities from this blog on there , too.  First, I need to learn Word Press and I HATE messing with new web software.  I liked my OLD software that no longer works (another reason the site hasn't been updated in forever).

That is all!  I wonder if I will actually do it all! 

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