Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Back To School SALE

FREETpTBacktoSchoolBoostSaleButton (1)In celebration of going back to school TPT is hosting a ONE DAY SALE tomorrow August 20th and I’ve decided to join in on the fun.

As a result EVERYTHING in my store will be 20% off and if you enter the promo code BOOST you can earn an additional 8% off. Now that’s something to celebrate!!!! I’m already stocking up on items that I know are must haves for this school year.

If you’re not exactly sure what you’re going to need , here are a few suggestions… feel free to check them out and let me know what you think :0)Intro. to Science: {includes the scientific method}

Parent Notes Bundle {EDITABLE}Pictographs: Graphing Unit

Learning about THEME in LiteratureGrammar Galore: Bundle Pack

Happy shopping and I hope you have a WONDERFUL school year!

XOXO,

MELISSA

Saturday, August 2, 2014

A Few Of My Favorite Things…

Do you know what time it is? It’s…

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You’re probably asking yourself why should you be excited about seeing the lazy days of summer come to an end? I have three ok four words for you…GIVEAWAY and LINK PARTY!

Although this mommy of 2 and teacher of many is weeping inside at the thought of once again having to wake up at 5:30am and having to check homework, I do always get a bit excited about a new school year!

I look at a new school year as a fresh beginning, or a chance to do it all again, but even BETTER this time around. And to make Back To School a little less painless for you, I have teamed up with a FABULOUS group of bloggers to offer you a chance to win over $370 in Amazon gift cards.

Can you imagine how much damage you can do on Amazon with that much moo-lah? That’s surely enough to make you a Back 2 School believer, don’t you think?

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So let’s talk Back 2 School Favorites… Below you will find a list of my top 10 Back 2 School MUST HAVES. I kid you not, I cannot start off the school year unless I have each of the following items.

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Item #1 are Labels-I am a bit label obsessed! I mean I label EVERYTHING in my classroom. It saves sooooo much time and helps to keep my kiddos organized.

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Item #2 is cardstock. I like to print all of my cover pages, job charts, classroom labels etc… on sturdy cardstock paper and then laminate so that they last a long time. I have found that Target and Walmart have the best prices.

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Item #3 is a place to store the materials I use throughout the week such as copies, flip books, art supplies etc… These GORGEOUS bin labels were created by the talented Mrs. S. from Learning in Wonderland.

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Item #4 Is one of my favorites and my students favorites as well. We use Post It Notes all the time in class. Why? Because they are colorful, sticky, and make learning FUN that’s why :0)

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Item #5 are table skirts from Party City. They are about $7.99 and can turn the ordinary into something extraordinary. Take a look at my desk before and after… doesn’t it look much nicer with the skirt. I also use this skirt around my computer tables to hide all those ugly cables.

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Item #6 A brand new journal to keep track of notes during staff meetings, PD’s, planning mtgs, etc… What I love about this journal besides the $4.97 price tag at Walmart is that it keeps ALL of my notes for a school year together. No more lost loose sheets of paper.

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Item #7 3M Poster Strips. I use these to hang up anything that tends to fall down throughout the school year. Especially things that are hung up high on my walls. These do NOT remove paint from your walls, and they last ALL year long!

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Item #8 Fadeless bulletin board paper… Need I say more!

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Item #9 Renuzits to keep the classroom smelling clean and fresh, and of course to keep the Fire Marshall happy… he doesn’t like plug ins :0(

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Item #10 Last on my list are the low odor Expo markers in a variety of colors. I’m a visual learner and find that many of my students tend to be visual too, so I like to use different colors to write on my boards. I also have to have LOW ODOR markers otherwise I get really bad headaches.

Now it’s your turn… I want to know what items you can’t live without during the school year and why?

Before you leave though, don’t forget to enter the giveaway. Remember that the more entries you have, the higher your odds are of winning! GOOD LUCK and have fun reading about other teachers favorite back 2 school items.

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, July 21, 2014

Florida Teacher's Blog Hop

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My blogger friends and I would like to welcome you to our Florida teacher blog hop! But before we get started why don’t you go grab yourself a nice tall cup of coffee… Now sit back and relax while we take you on a quick tour of The Sunshine State. While here don’t forget to grab yourself a few FREEBIES and remember to enter for a chance to win our Bundles of Sunshine!image I live in Miami which is about 3 ½ hours from Disney World…my family’s second home! We are very fortunate to live so close to the parks and so we usually make at least one trip a year to Disney. As a matter of fact, just last week we were up in Universal and Islands of Adventure visiting the brand new Harry Potter rides….AMAZING… they were definitely worth the 5:00 am wake up call!!!!! image I’ve lived in Miami pretty much my entire life… except for the 5 months that I went away to college in Tampa, FL. I will be honest, though, in telling you that my husband and I have considered moving due to how congested and over populated Miami has become. However, for the time being this is still our home :0) imageLiving in sunny South Florida sure has its benefits… especially for those like myself that HATE the cold weather. You see one of the best parts of living here is that you can wear flip flops, shorts, and tank tops pretty much year round. You see the weather in Florida is H-O-T, hot!!!!! And I must say for the past few years it has been a scorcher. 
Many people hear Miami and automatically think of South Beach. However, my family and I don’t get out to SB quite often. Instead, one of our favorite places to go on a Saturday is to Everglades National Park. This park is said to be one of the most unusual public parks in the US. and I happen to think it is also quite amazing! Take a look …  Female American Anhinga with Young at Nest - Everglades National Park, Florida Dollarphotoclub_24105585 The Florida everglades is also the only place in the world where alligators and crocodiles can co-exist?… Interesting… This park has so much to do and see… you can boat, hike, bike, canoe, fish, and camp just to name a few activities you can do here. What you will surely see in this park is plenty of wildlife such as alligators, manatees, spoonbills, egrets, and these amazing birds called anhingas that appear to scuba dive underwater looking for fish and then suddenly emerge on the surface. So now that you’ve learned a little bit about Miami, it’s time for a few FREEBIES! For the next 3 days you will have an opportunity to check out each of our blogs to snag yourself some wonderful ideas for your own classroom. To grab my freebie all you have to do is click on the image below.
image This freebie would be a wonderful Back to School activity to use with your students during those hectic first few weeks of school when you’re getting to know your students. You can also check out the 3 packs below that are wonderful Back to School resources. They will be on sale for this weekend only!
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The Florida teachers below have two fantastic giveaways for you! You can enter once from each one of our pages. All you have to do is follow my blog! Hop around to all the blogs listed below, and be sure to follow them to get more entries. The more entries you have, the more likely you are to win! Each pack also includes a Starbucks gift card (because, well, a teacher's gotta have a coffee!).


Come find out more about the beautiful state of Florida by reading about these other sweet teachers!





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Monday, July 14, 2014

The Adventures of Ai

Slide1Just recently I was lucky enough to receive an advanced copy (e-book) of New York Times bestselling author Craig Bouchard’s latest children’s book called The Adventures of Ai.

This adventure story which debuts in just a few short days (July 16th), is part fantasy and part non-fiction; and although it targets boys and girls between the ages of 9-12… I quickly became immersed in the plot right from the beginning and enjoyed the adventurous ride alongside Ai.

Here’s a sneak peek…
The Adventures of Ai game and book trailer

So now that I’ve caught your attention with beautiful sights and sounds, what exactly is this story all about…

The Adventures of Ai is a tale about never giving up! A topic which hits close to home with many of our own students.

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Ai, a young, brave girl learns that with every struggle she faces while on her adventure to find the secret treasure, she learns a valuable lesson in return. One of the lessons she quickly realizes is that she cannot do it all alone. She needs the help of her animal friends and family.

While on her adventures with her faithful horse Chuugi, a bluebird named Honmei, and a deer called Yorokobi Ai encounters magical trees, monsters, secrets, and treasures. There is never a dull moment!

Besides painting a beautiful tale through the use of fantasy, Craig Bouchard incorporates art, history, poetry, music, and even some math through the story.

And for those students that at first might not pick up a book of this nature, there IS a 3D videogame for iOS, Android and Kindle that might just be the spark they need. Click here to check that out.

Finally, I am happy to share that in celebration of the book launch, I am hosting a giveaway in which 2 lucky winners will receive an e-book copy of The Adventures of Ai . The winners will be selected on Friday, July 18th. All you have to do to enter is fill out the Rafflecopter form below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Good Luck to All!
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Friday, July 11, 2014

Lets talk patterns & a FREEBIE

power of patterns

We live in a world surrounded by patterns and half of the time we don’t even realize it!

Every day we drive through neighborhoods of neatly organized houses, we walk into stores filled with aisle upon aisle of merchandise that have been carefully categorized, and we stroll through parking lots of neatly spaced cars. Yet, do we ever stop to realize that these are ALL patterns and that they make our lives easier?

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Patterns are EVERYWHERE and most of the time we fail to take notice of them. Unfortunately, our students do the same thing…

I don’t think we place enough emphasis on the Power of Patterns in our classroom. At least I know that I don’t…

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Just recently, I attended a 3 day workshop that opened my eyes to the importance of teaching our children to recognize patterns all around us. Not only are most patterns BEAUTIFUL to look at, but they also bring order to our world and make our lives much easier!

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Because math is a study of patterns, if we can encourage our students to be on a constant quest for them, math will become MUCH more exciting and engaging! Let’s not even get into the long term benefits (such as Algebra) that our kiddos will reap from learning such a simple concept at a very young age.

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Why else should children be pattern detectives? Why is it NOT enough to teach about patterns when we get to the chapter in our books on patterns?

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In an effort to introduce my students to patterns right from the very start of the school year, I have created the following BACK to SCHOOL Coded 100 Chart Activity that I can’t wait to share with my 3rd graders. (If you’d like a free copy of the activity simply click on any of the pictures below.)

Pattern Puzzle cover page JPEG

Since my students are still on summer break, I tried the activity out with my own son and he absolutely LOVED it! As a matter of fact he made a point to tell me that if I make another one, he wants to be the first to “test it out”. (That’s a winner in my book!)

So what is this activity all about? Basically, students are given a mat that resembles a blank 100’s chart grid.

mat JPEG

They are then given 15 puzzle pieces and their goal is to work with a partner to assemble the puzzle. The key to solving this task, however, is to figure out the patterns that are present.Slide9

Now when you complete this activity with your own students, I want you to try REALLY hard NOT to offer them any clues. Instead guide them by asking questions such as… What do you notice about the different puzzle pieces? What do you know already about puzzles? What strategy you think you should try out first?

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Remember, the goal is to get your students to notice the patterns…

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When the puzzle has been completed join your students in doing the HAPPY DANCE!!!!!!! Then discuss ALL the patterns they were able to find and how it helped them solve the puzzle.

I hope YOUR students will have as much fun as my son did completing this Back to School Pattern Puzzle!

Stop… look around… do you notice any patterns?

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Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Giveaway Winners

Thank you SO much to everyone that participated in this weeks Parent Notes Giveaway!

Todays 3 lucky winners are none other than….. drumroll please…

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Congratulations, ladies!

I will be contacting you today so that I can get your prize out to you as soon as possible.

For those of you that participated and did not win this time around, I do have some great news to share! There is another GIVEAWAY right around the corner, so hang in there and stay tuned…

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Monday, July 7, 2014

Manic Monday Freebie

Slide1Hi there! Hope you all had a wonderful 4th of July weekend and were able to enjoy some glorious fireworks…

Now that the weekend has once again slipped through our fingers, it’s back to Monday. Although it’s not exactly a Manic Monday for me since we are off from school, I’ve still decided to go ahead and link up with Charity Preston over at Classroom Freebies.

Since in a few short weeks most of us will be scrambling once again with Back To School prep., I’ve decided to share a resource that I think is a necessity for every teacher’s bag of tricks. Today I’m sharing with you my Editable Weekly Behavior Chart which is part of my Parent Notes Bundle. I told you all about yesterday, but if you missed it just simply click here to go check it out.

Slide6What I love about this freebie, besides the fact that it is F-R-E-E, is that it is EDITABLE! If at any time you feel the need to customize the behaviors or work habits listed, simply click on the text boxes and voila. You can customize them to your liking. It’s that simple!

Although you may not be using a weekly behavior chart at the beginning of the year, it is always good to have one handy. So save this puppy to your jump drive and you’ll be thanking me later on :0)

I wonder

Do you have a Weekly Behavior Chart that you use with your students? Or were you like me… frustrated that I hadn’t found the right one yet? I’d love to hear from you…

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Classroom Freebies Manic Monday
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