Tuesday, January 29, 2013

My Document Camera Arrived!

I got my document camera yesterday from IPEVO.  If was free, I didn't pay a penny, not even for shipping!  Our awesome tech team got it hooked up for me today right as I was leaving.  I can't wait to try it out tomorrow!  Here is the link in case you missed it before:  http://www.ipevo.com/wishpool.  They are all out of the free tech items this month, but make sure you check back next month!

I was the blogger again today on Pinteresting Mama's.  I blogged about how to make these adorable pointers.  They cost less than $1.50 each!

Click on the link to be taken to the post.

Last thing for tonight, make sure you check out Kool in Kinderlands 100 follower giveaway.  She is giving away tons of awesome stuff!

I am joining some fabulous bloggers to celebrate Khrys from Keepin' It Kool In Kinderland. She is throwing a HUGE 100 follower giveaway! One lucky winner will win over 25 products and 3 winners will win a product of their choice from Khrys' TeachersPayTeachers store. I hope you will check it out!



a Rafflecopter giveaway

I hope you will enter this giveaway! This will end NEXT Wednesday February 6th when the clock strikes midnight. Can't wait to find out who the super lucky winner will be!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Friday Book I Love & Guided Math

This is probably one of my favorite books to use.  It is about a man who is homeless and he goes around town collecting cans.  A little boy that lives in the same city decided he wanted a new skateboard so he starts collecting cans also.  He finds out that the Can Man is collecting cans to get a new winter coat and the little boy decided to give all of his can money to the man.  You have to read this book to teach your students about wants and needs and good character.  There is also a surprise at the end of the book.   I tear up a little everytime I read it!
The Can Man
Click on the book to be taken to Amazon!

Guided Math!
So I dove in this week finally.  The kids LOVED it!  I am still unsure about it.  I was under the impression that I was going to be able to meet with all four of my math groups everyday.  That is NOT going to happen!  I tried that this week and I got two really good groups in and the third group I met with was short and not really detailed enough.  So next week my plan is for groups to look like this:
Monday - Whole Group Place Value Lesson and pretest
Tuesday - Group 1 and Group 2
Wednesday - Group 3 and Group 4
Thursday - Reteach groups that need it
Friday - Fluency Friday (we play fluency games and take our timed tests)

Doing groups this way will allow me to teach a 20 -25 minute lesson with each group and it gives me the opportunity to reteach, in small groups, the kids that need it.

While I was meeting with my groups the rest of my groups were at other centers.
Smartboard - Have you ever visited www.gregtangmath.com??  If not, you should.  They have a game on there called kakooma and my students LOVE it!  Our school also has a subscription to Education City so I had them alternate between those two things at the SMARTboard this week.

Extra Practice - Each group had a worksheet that pertained to the extra practice that they needed.  One group had an addition worksheet, two groups had a fact family worksheet, and one group had a subtraction through 20 worksheet.

Math Tubs - Each tub had a different game that pertained to what the particular group needed.  We are a Box Cars and One Eyed Jacks school, so finding games to put in their math tubs was fairly easy.   Here is a quick overview of one of the games we played this week!

Zap - students have a deck of cards divided equally between the two players.  Each player flips over a card and the first student to add them together and yell out the answer gets to keep the cards.  You can play two ways, the student to have the most cards after going through their piles wins, or you can play until one student has all the cards.
*I am going to use this game again when I teach adding three numbers, they will just play in a group of 3 instead of a group of 2.
Brrr It's Cold Outside: 10 Common Core Aligned Math Centers
We also played Frosty Fact Families & Snowy Subtraction out of Katie Kings Brrr! It's Cold Outside unit!

Hope you all have a great weekend!  We are *almost* antibiotic free at my house.  My youngest went back to get her ears rechecked and I asked about a rash that she has (and has had for a while) around her waist and ankles.  Apparently it is somewhat common for kids to be sensitive to elastic in their paints waistband (and because she lives in sweatpants the elastic around the ankles). So she got put on a steroid cream to help with the hives. 

P.S.  Go check out A Sweet Little Giveaway at Fashion Crazy Learning Days!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Free Document Camera and Changes...

Have you heard of IPEVO?
Yeah, me neither until about a week ago when a coworker sent out an email saying she had gotten a free document camera.  Just the word free made my ears perk up a little bit, so I thought I would check it out.  I did, and then kind of forgot about it because I have been so busy at work and  I have a sick child at home.  Friday I had to pick up my little Whit from the sitters and take her to the doctor and when I came home the girls laid down for a nap so I checked my email and saw the email again.  I figured I would sign up, what's the worst that can happen?  They fill my inbox with junk mail and I don't get a camera.  Well, much to my surprise after writing a very short paragraph on why I NEED a document camera, my wish came true.  I got an email from IPEVA today saying my wish had been granted.  Now, I don't actually have the document camera yet, I will update you when it comes!
IPEVO Point 2 View USB Document Camera
The website is:
Apparently they give away different technology items every month.  Maybe next month I can wish for an Ipad.  I know, I know, keep dreaming!
I am also working on making my blog cute.  But, I am not a huge fan of the internet when it comes to codes.  My blog looks beautiful and centered in Mozilla, off centered to the right in Internet Explorer, and off centered to the left on my phone.  Seriously...how is this even possible.  So, if you are looking at my blog and it looks off to you, it probably is.  I will keep working at it.  I did find the little button to make the background stay put instead of scroll.  Learning,  little steps, baby steps, google is my friend.

Have a wonderful Martin Luther King Jr. Day. I for one, can't wait to get back and see my little monkeys tomorrow!

I also uploaded a new item to my TPT store.. Check it out!
This file includes two sets of place value (o through 99) I have, who has.  Each set has 20 cards.  I use these cards when we have a couple extra m...

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Check it out!

I was todays blogger on PinterestingMama's today.  I talk about how I am teaching my strong-willed 3 1/2 year old letter identification. 

Friday, January 18, 2013

Books I LOVE!

I have decided to dedicate Fridays to books that I LOVE to use in my classroom.  Today I am going to talk about a little girl named Lulu.  Lulu and the Brontosaurus by Judith Viorst is probably the best childrens book I have ever read.  The story is about a little girl who is very stubborn and strong-willed.  She ALWAYS gets what she wants and she decided she wanted a brontosaurus for her birthday.  Obviously her parents said no and Lulu (written like Lulu herself wrote the story) tells an amazing tale of what happens next.  My first graders loved this book and they all take turns checking it out from our school library.   The kids thought it was fantastic that there is a chapter 8 1/2.  I think it is fantastic for teaching voice.  Check out the book on Amazon!  You can even read some excerpts from the book.  What books do your students love to read?

Lulu and the Brontosaurus
(click on the book to be taken to Amazon.com)
I am home with a sick kiddo today so I decided to make a new fact family math game for my students to use next week at centers.  Check it out on TPT, it is on sale until Monday!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

MLK Give Away

Check out Kickin' It In Kindergarten for a great MLK Day giveaway! 
Here is a picture of part of the packet you could win.

What are you doing in your classroom to Celebrate? 
I have a few books to read including Martin's Big Words.
Martin's Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

I also stumbled across this MLK fact sheet on pinterest.

Speaking of pinterest, do you ever wonder how you came up with lesson plans and taught without it?  I have come across so many neat ideas and lessons on pinterest.  I must have been a boring teacher before it.  I date my teaching in categories;  B.P. and A.P...before pinterest and after pinterest!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

12 in '12 Linky

This is my first linky party! 
12 favorite things!
12. Favorite movie you watched:
Brave... I know this may sound ridiculous, but I took my three year old on a mommy/daughter date to see Brave shortly after I had my second baby.  She was glued to the screen the entire time.  It is a great movie!  It definitely takes the cake for my favorite Disney movie!
11. Favorite TV series:
Nashville - I was hooked and broke my early bedtime every Wednesday night to stay up for it!
10. Favorite restaurant:
Chili's - I am a sucker for their never ending chip bowl!
9. Favorite new thing you tried:
Asparagus - I really thought that I hated asparagus and refused for 9 years to try it.  I finally tried it to shut my husband up and I had to bite my tongue because I LOVE it!
8. Favorite gift you got:
Amazon Gift Cards - then I can buy whatever I want!
7. Favorite thing you pinned:
Pinned Image
Seriously, anyone with a toddler has to find the humor in this.  It is exactly how things go here!
6. Favorite blog post:
Anything from Queen of The First Grade Jungle...her blog is the first teacher blog I really came across and I have gotten so many AWESOME ideas and activities from her. 
5. Best accomplishment:
I was honored to be asked to mentor a new teacher in our school. 
4. Favorite picture:
(I have two)
3. Favorite memory:
Any memory that involves my kids playing together!
2. Goal for 2013:
Find the positive in every situation instead of stressing myself out with the negative.
1. One Little Word:

Monday, January 7, 2013

Addition Frenzy - Freebie

I currently have a love/hate relationship with the Common Core State Standards.  I think that in the long run they are going to be very beneficial, but in the short term they give me a HEADACHE!  I have decided for the remainder of the school year I am going to devote my Friday math time slot strictly to fluency.  So then I went on a hunt to find some fun fluency activities that do not involve timed tests or flashcards.  I couldn't quite find what I was looking for.  I have seen something like this before but it was too complex for what I was wanting, too many problems and it was timed.  I created this simplified version for my littles to use. 
Click on the picture above to get your copy!
(I am working with TPT to get the image to show up in the preview window)

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Enter To Win!

You can enter to win my Doubles/Doubles Plus One Math Around the Room along with many other AWESOME resources over at Rockin' Teacher Materials.  Click on the picture below to check it out!Photobucket

Another Freebie

I have been working with my reading groups on responding to their reading with graphic organizers.  One of my lower groups is still having a difficult time determining what happens in the beginning, middle and end of the story.  I have seen quite a few graphic organizers for this online and they have worked well.  I wanted to create one that we can use until Valentine's Day.  My plan is to have the students write a few words in each heart and then illustrate.  After they have that down I will show them how to use their organizer to write a book review about the book that they read.  Making sure they understand that they should highlight main things happened throughout the story, but they should not rewrite the story word for word.   Click on the picture below to be taken to my TPT store where you can download this for FREE!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Check It Out!

I was today's blogger on Pinteresting Mamas!  Check it out!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Very First Freebie!

In honor of kicking off my blog, I posted a new freebie to my TPT store.   I love changing my students' desk tags to match the season/holiday.  With Valentine's Day quickly approaching I whipped these babies up quickly tonight.  Thanks to Ashley Hughes and her adorable clip art!  Click on the picture to get to my TPT store where you can download these for free.  Please remember to leave feedback!

New to the Blogging World!

Please bear with me as I am figuring out this whole blogging thing.  I have wanted to do this for a while and made it my New Year's Resolution to sit down and figure it out.  I did not want to spend money on a blog design as I am sure I can figure this out on my own (read my husband can figure this out and then teach me).  

I am super excited to be starting Guided Math with my first graders when we come back from break on Tuesday.  It is something that I have wanted to do for a while, but I struggled with the logistics of it.  My boss gave me some great advice and got me motivated.  The conversation went like this: 

Me:  I really want to try guided math, I have dabbled with it a little, but I just can't wrap my head around how it is going to work.

Her:  Amber, it isn't much different than Guided Reading.  Just do it.

Me:  Okay then!

I saw the magnetic pizza tins for group management on pinterest.  I am going to get some tomorrow!  I will post pictures when I get them finished!

Update:  Here is the finished product!  The supplies to make them cost less than 15 dollars!