Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween from my family to yours!!!


Pumpkin Math Freebies!

Some of the years I was in second grade we did a day of Pumpkin Math.  We asked parents to come in and volunteer and do math activities with pumpkins.  The years I was lucky parents sent in the pumpkins.  I found about five groups (and five pumpkins) to be about the magic number. Usually I could get four parents (plus myself for the 5th group) to come in. The kids loved it and it was a great way to burn some of that Halloween excitement off!

I revamped some of my handouts for this year to share!

Here is a copy of the parent letter I sent home requesting volunteers and supplies.

I made two versions of the recording sheet for students.  Both of the recording sheets have the same tasks/ information.  The format is just a bit different.

One is a single sheet of paper.

Students can record the information as they cut into the pumpkin.

The second is folded into a small booklet.

This would be great for kids that need a little push in following directions because they only do a page at a time.  However, it might be hard for kids with fine motor issues since it is smaller.

Also, today is the big day for releasing my November Math Centers!

 There are 11 centers in the pack and they cover 12 different standards!  The packet is over 100 pages and is only $8.00! Whoohoo! Some of the activities may cover the same skill and can be used to tier and differentiate learning.

All centers are in black and white for easy (and cheap) printing.

A colorful cover and directions page are included for a little ink cartridge (and wallet) friendly punch of color!

Every center includes a recording sheet for student accountability and each center was designed to be completed independently.  However, the centers can be modified to be completed in pairs if the teacher chooses.

I gave away several little freebies that supplement this center pack exclusively available on Facebook this week.  Make sure to hop on over and get a  taste of the pack.

These centers were designed to follow curriculum pacing guides and are also directly correlated to my November Daily Math Review Pages.  These are a spiraling review that cover 5 domains daily.  An assessment with similar format is provided for the 5th day of the week along with a rubric to score the assessment.

I am up to elbows right now getting my November Daily Math Review Pages ready for publishing, but here is a sneak peak!  You can see my weekly progression showing the increasing complexity of the problems.  The centers are planned to correlate with each standard.  My first draft of ideas can be seen in my blue chicken scratch!

Want to see more? Click here!

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



Did You Get Them?

Sometimes being a follower is not that bad ... :)

TOMORROW I will be releasing my November Math Centers. To celebrate, I have been releasing a freebie to supplement the pack each day exclusively on Facebook.  Just a hint...today's freebie is going to especially good!  :) So, are you a follower nabbing up all the free turkey goodness? Click here to be a follower...come on, everyone else is doing it!



Feelin' Crafty

Every so often I get the urge to craft so I slide on over to my computer, open up Pinterest and start clicking. And then usually I get so overwhelmed that I call my crafting session complete.  Either that or someone is crying and wants chocolate milk. Eh. All in a day's work.

Here are a few of my most favorite pins lately.  I have cited the original source.  Please, please, please DO NOT pin these from my site.  I am including the source underneath the photo that goes directly to the correct owner of the idea. If you pin it from me I am "stealing" their Pinterest traffic and that would just make the Pinterest Police (and me) sad.

I am so making these cookies this week.  How cute are they?!?!?!

I thought this poster was BRILLIANT. All higher order thinking and stuff like that.  This would be a great beginning of the year lesson to define metacognition and then highlight each strategy as it was taught throughout the year. 
Me like.

I have seen this commercial a million times and never thought of using it this way until I saw the pin!  The original pinner noted that he/ she was going to use it as an example of backing up your reasons and opinions with facts in opinion writing.  That.is.awesome.

Although I am not in the classroom this year, I have to admit this made me a bit jealous.  Holy cow, how creative is THAT!??  The rest of the hall displays are just as cute.  *Iwantthatparentinmyroom.

Kinley needs this tree.  Simple as that.  She is three and I think this year she is starting to really *get* Christmas.  I already bought the felt and have a half made version of a Jack O'Lantern.  I hope to finish it before she graduates.

We have done some crafting at home together.  Kinley loves to "do art." 

We went on a walk and collected leaves.  Then we made leaf rubbings when we came home.  So simple, but she loved it!

We also did apple stamping and she loved that too.  I have pictures somewhere! 



Monsterously Good Fun

I love teaching in October!  So many fun things to tie into the season!  We could never really teach Halloween, but I always worked in some good old fashioned monster fun.

Teresa at Confessions of a Teaching Junkie shared this adorable lesson on her blog last year. She shared her monster adjectives poster and I made my own version.
Not as cute as hers, but it will do!  Then I asked students to brainstorm words that describe the monsters and I wrote them all around the chart. Students then used the adjectives to write the close poem.

Another tie in to monsters was my Monster Measurement.  Students created a monster foot and then used a ruler to measure it to the nearest whole inch and related it to another real world object. They LOVED making these!

I do a whole HUGGEEEE Comm Core Unit with the text I Need My Monster  by Amanda Noll. I love this book so much.  I have started to write this unit for purchase on Teachers Pay Teachers but stall out every time since I lift the text for close reading and I can't figure out how to do this legally with copyright and all that jazz. There is SO much you can do with this book!

Another great read aloud is  Go Away, Big Green Monster! by  Ed Emberly. I am sure this lesson is nothing new or earth shattering.  I use this text to show how readers visualize when they read and writers write to describe characters.

I hide the cover of the book Go Away Big Green Monster by Ed Emberly.  Explain that there are two characters in this book, the narrator that is doing all of the talking and the monster that we “see.”

Then I explain how Ed used lots of describing words to paint a picture in the reader’s head.  Words that describe a noun (a person, place or thing) are called adjectives.  While reading the story today, we are going to picture what the monster looks like using the adjectives and description Ed gives the reader.

 Then I give each student a white sheet of paper. I read aloud the story without showing the students ANY of the pictures. Ask students to close their eyes and listen to the story and picture in their heads what the monster looks like.  Then ask students to draw a picture of the monster in pencil only while the story is read aloud.  You can read it aloud yourself  or students can listen to the recording on You Tube (as long as they cannot see the images projected) .After students have imagined and drawn the picture in pencil, read aloud the story one more time to add color and any details.

Then I read aloud the book the last time, this time allowing students to see the pictures and compare it to their pictures.  I ask, did Ed Emberly do a good job of describing his characters?  Why or why not?  How can we do a better job or describing our characters in our writing?

I wish I took pictures of their drawings last year.  They were so cute!

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



Cheating on a Thrifty Thursday!

I have a little secret to admit.  I have no freebie today for Thrifty Thursday.  No reason, or excuses.  Somehow Thursday just appeared this week and I wasn't prepared. Dang.   So I thought I would do a throwback post with freebies that are pretty timely.  I know conferences are creeping up, so here is a post about conferences.  Please make sure to check the files to make sure all the links are still active and correct, just in case!

Since conferences start soon I thought I would share some of the conference forms and parent handouts I have collected over time.  NONE of these are my original creations.  I have tried to cite the original author or cite when I knew or recognized the work, but unfortunately most of this has been lost over time.  I did take the content and "pretty it up."  If you are the author or recognize the work, please let me know so I can give credit where credit is due.

This sheet has helpful English and Grammar sites

This is a questionnaire to send home prior to conferences to get a feel for what a parent may want to discuss.

A collection of website in Reading, Writing, Spelling and Math
Double check to make sure all of the links are still active!

I  DID NOT create this handout- I just added the graphics and fonts and such.  This was originally on the Mosaic Listserv but the page it was from is not longer active.   I could not find the exact document anywhere online?  Does anyone remember this link?

I have created a conference check list for teachers to use as a guide to prepare for conferences and also as a guide for discussion. It is available on Teachers Pay Teachers for $2.00.  The check list is a Word document and is customizable once it is downloaded.  Please feel free to check it out!


Lots of good little nuggets!  And now for your Thrifty Thursday deal of the week!  

This one is the first in a new product line I am created called Historical People Pockets! It is my Historical People Pockets: Frederick Douglass: Interactive Notebook Activities!

This pack has 6 hands-on activities that are standards based.  They are made to either fit in a pocket like in the large picture on the right above OR in an interactive notebook. This pack will be a great supplement to my Frederick Douglass pack I am about to start working on.  Right now I am making a Paul Revere version of the above and I am about 1/3 done!
This pack includes:
  • The pocket to store materials in
  • Small book with questions
  • Character trait flip book using text evidence
  • Timeline
  • Step Book that can also be a short assessment
  • Word Search
  • 3 Additional journal responses about the activities.
Typically this pack is $4.75, but for today only it is 50% off at $2.38!



Five Word Wednesday!

Make sure to hop on over to my Facebook page for Five Word Wednesday!  The responses are a hoot and it is a great chance to win ANY item from my store :).  Get ready for the giggles!


A Little Autumn Collection

It is finally cooling down around here!  Yay! We spent the weekend up in the mountains this weekend with my family.  It was beautiful weather!  Warm days and cooler evenings!  We went to the apple orchard and picked a few apples. Kinley loved sitting on the tractor!

That child and her hair! It has a life of its own!

I know times are busy so I thought I would  create a post of all my Autumn and Fall freebies. That way everything is in one place, right at your fingertips!


Reading/ ELA

My website has a ton of FREE Halloween and Fall-ish ideas.  Click here to check them out!



Spooky Fact Family Practice

Okay, so this isn't really  spooky.  I teach 7 year olds! I have to keep it clean, engaging, and nothing that can be associated with any kind of religious shenanigans.  Because that would be bad.  Real bad.

I noticed many, many of our second grade students were struggling with fact families. We had to stop everything and back the bus up and realllly work on this before we moved on to anything more difficult.

I came up with this idea during lunch about 20 minutes before the kids came in.  We rushed to get it together and the kids loved it!

We made haunted fact family houses!

We gave the kids an index card with three numbers.  We made the index cards ahead of time and were able to differentiate the difficulty of the task by how large the numbers were.  And best of all?  The kids had no idea that task was leveled.

The kids were then able to pick out two pumpkins to write the subtraction sentence on and two spider webs to write the addition sentences on.

They were cute, but I decided to make them MUCH cuter than my "on the fly" activity.  I created a template to share with several pages.  Here is the house.
Make a few copies on cards stock and cut them out. Students can use them as tracers and choose their own color of construction paper for the house.

Students write the fact family numbers on the door.

I then included a few other pages you (or the students) can use for the number sentences.  There are several doors on one page to save paper!

Students can then write the number sentences on the bats, pumpkins or windows.  Or they can write them on the windows and use the pumpkins and bats as decoration.  I hand drew the pumpkins and bats in Photoshop because I couldn't find simple enough clip art.  They aren't perfect, but it was my first go!

If you would like a copy of this file you can download it here, free!


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


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