Friday, December 28, 2012

Organization.... Help!

I am linking up with Hope from Second Grade Shenanigans.

She has some great ideas for organizing your classroom!  I love this linky because I need serious help to organize my life! {My husband would also like you to come help me! Any takers?}

I think when I was born the organizational gene was lost in the maternity ward.  I try to organize myself  ~ {I really honestly do}~ But then life takes over and I somehow lose that organization! 


1. I resolve to organize my books in my classroom.  I love First Grade Blue Skies library organizational tips!  This was an easy tip I know I can do!

2.  I resolve to make my teacher drawers cuter!  Kinder Craze has the cutest drawers around!  This Summer I saw her cute sticker organizer and organized my stickers! It has been so great - I am giving out more stickers because I can find the one I want so much faster!

3. I resolve to organize my posters. I love how Growing Kinders organizes her posters - I know I can do this!

The one tip I can share with you is to organize your memory book for your class as the year goes on - It will make it that much easier come May/June.  I have a folder for each student that I keep their items in.  Okay, I am not the best about printing their pictures, but when I find a sale, I print as many as I have at the time! And through Saturday, Dec. 29th - Walgreens has their prints for 9 cents each! Can't beat that deal! So I am uploading and heading to Walgreens today!

Okay, I think I can do 3 new things this year to organize my school life.... Now to organize my home life!
Is anyone willing to come over and organize me? Can you give me any tips? {My husband would greatly appreciate it! He does try to help me on a daily basis!}

Here's to a organized 2013!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

December, Freebies and Technology

{Warning.... This is a long post!}

I wanted to share what a busy month we had in our classroom.... We were very busy this month!

At the very beginning of the month I got to finally go to a workshop! I was sooo excited! I went to a Love & Logic workshop! Learned some great tips!  My favorite tip from speaker Jim Fay was "I love you too much to argue."  When my teenager tries to begin an argument with me, I just calmly say "I love you too  much to argue" and walk away (of course, she loves to argue and will follow me and try to continue).

Meanwhile... back in the classroom (while I was at this awesome workshop).... the electricity at my school was out! School was released at 10:00am. Any students that did not get picked up went with my sub to a neighboring school, where it was warm! {OK - great day to be gone! I couldn't have taught, tested or did any Christmas projects anyway! But my poor students! I was a wreck all day worrying about them!}

Our school's football played so great this year we got out early lots of Fridays so we could go to the playoffs - which we did! We played in Dallas Cowboy Stadium! It was an awesome game! Of course, with all this madness, I taught new concepts, did some report card testing, DRA testing and  finished up some cute Christmas projects! Want to see what we did?  Okay, this is a long post, but there are some freebies, so please stay with me.......

These were our Christmas presents to the parents. They turned out super cute!
Sarah from Kindergarten Korner created these.
You can find these here and read more about them here

This was the calendar and the picture below is the page I stapled them to - I put a picture of each student on a piece of construction paper (we took these outside on our swing in our school garden), painted their hand and put it on the page and had them write I Love You! and their name. Then I put a label in the bottom corner with their name and Kindergarten 2012-2013. I also put a magnet on the back so they could hang them on the refrigerator if they wanted to!
I am sooo sorry this is side ways - I can not get it to turn around!
My kiddos took a plain envelope, added some strips of red construction paper
and made it look like a present! We put our calendars in them!
They turned out so cute!

This was another parent present we made. I found the idea 2 years ago, when a sweet student celebrated Christmas, but NO Santa Claus {she could not make anything with Santa}, so I found these ornaments and have made them ever since!   
I bought the ornaments at Garden Ridge and used white paint from Wal Mart.
I used sharpies to decorate the faces. I attached a cute ribbon and added a poem.
To send these breakables home, I went to my favorite restaurant, Pei Wei,
and asked for 20 of their take home boxes!
Put a label on, put tissue paper in the bottom of the box, 
added the ornament, taped the top shut and put on a bow!
Super cute and super easy!

Would you like a tag for these? {Click here} I made it for 2013. If you need it for a different year, please email me.

This is the take home box from Pei Wei - perfect to take home their ornaments!

 We made these pretty poinsettias to decorate our tables and to decorate 
the students homes! Aren't they pretty?

For my class Christmas party, I made Gingerbread Play dough for my kiddos to play with and take home.
They had sooo much fun playing with it and it was super easy to make!
I got the recipe {here} and I put a label with the recipe on the bag
(in case their parents wanted to make more). Each recipe made 4 large balls - so I made 5 batches.
You can download the labels {here- I used Avery labels 5163.
I gave each student a playdoh mat I got free from Over the Moonbow

Our class also had to make this cute Santa craft from Miss Kindergarten!
It turned out super cute and I know the parents will love it as much as I did!

Again, I am sooo sorry - I wish I knew how to rotate a picture! I rotated on my computer, but when I download it, it is always the wrong way! So Sorry!

For the Christmas Party, I had my class make these cute Christmas Trees I saw all over Pinterest
and found some great tips at Kinder Craze.
Some fabulous tips I found:
* Put icing on the plate and the cone on top, to hold it in place.
*Give each child their own small cup with the green icing and a knife to spread it on the ice cream cone.
*Put some of the sprinkles on the plate and let them have fun!
I didn't send them home - I let them eat them!
Then we went to recess so they could run that sugar off!

So my kiddos could take all their goodies home, we made
these cute reindeer bags (using a grocery sack)!

Of course, I also had to teach and test this month!
We learned our numbers 11-15 (and boy, they are having a hard time with these)
To help us with that, we used
Kinderglynn's Number Books - you can find {here} and
Babbling Abby's RTI Number Sense - you can find {here}.
We also used lots of Christmas erasers I found at Dollar Tree for counting out 
on Math Mats from my I See Christmas pack.

We also worked on letters, rhyming and sentence structure.
To make the learning more fun, we used Deedee Wills awesome December Poetry Station!
My class loved it!  I can't wait to get her January Poetry Station!
I know they will sooo love it!

We also used our SmartBoard! My class LOVES it!
It is my classes favorite game!
To help my class learn their letters, I used Lakeshore's Letter of the Day Activities.

I use both of these as part of one of my educational centers.
The class loves them!
I want to get some more of their awesome software!
It is amazing!

You can read more about how much I love my SmartBoard {here}

I am linking up with Growing Kinders.
She has a great post on Technology!
I love that she has iPads in her classroom!
I plan to start a DonorsChoose project to get one for my classroom!

Go visit Growing Kinders and see all her awesome technology and get some new ideas for your classroom!

 I am also linking up with Run! Miss Nelson's Got the Camera!

I hope you enjoyed this long post and got a few ideas for your classroom!
Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Holly Bloggy Christmas!

Merry Christmas everyone!

What a wonderful day! My little one woke up way early to show us everything Santa brought him! I am way tired {that means a nap is on my agenda for later today!} but I am sooo excited!

This Christmas season has blessed me and my family and my classroom!  I have taken lots of pictures of the projects we made and will blog about that another day.... Today I am linking up to show you my Holly Bloggy Christmas 2012 present!

Holly Bloggy Christmas

I received my package in the cutest Snoopy envelope!  I should have known it was from Teri!  She is amazingly crafty and has the cutest crafts! I so love her blog!
A Cupcake for the Teacher
This year the theme was your favorite things!  She got me my favorite Bath and Body scents!  I am burning the candles she gave me right now {spice scent!} and my little one is just ooohing and aaaahing! It smells so good right now! {But I did bake cinnamon rolls this morning, so it is a good mixture!}

Isn't this precious?!!! And it smells soooo good!

Look at that adorable Snoopy package!!! Super Adorable!

Now to show you what I gave my Bloggy Exchange partner:

I had Farrah from

Fabulous Firsties

and she said she liked pink and bling, so I found her this.....

I hope she loves it!

 I have plans to hang out in my PJs all day long and love on my kids and husband! They are begging me to get off the computer.... So I will blog again another day!  Happy Christmas and remember the reason for the season.... Jesus was born today!  Blessings to you and your loved ones today!  Hugs!!!

Monday, December 17, 2012


I had a post all ready to post on Saturday morning, but could not bring myself to turn the computer on this weekend.  I visited family out of town and just tried to hug my family and kids as much as possible.

My heart is broken for the little lives we lost.

My principal sent me this poem today - I hope it touches your heart, like it did mine.....

Twas' 11 days before Christmas, around 9:38
When 20 beautiful children stormed through heaven's gate.
Their smiles were contagious, their laughter filled the air.
They could hardly believe all the beauty they saw there.
They were filled with such joy, they didn't know what to say.
They remembered nothing of what had happened earlier that day.
"Where are we?" asked a little girl, as quiet as a mouse.
"This is Heaven." declared a small boy. "We're spending Christmas at God's house."
When what to their wondering eyes did appear,
but Jesus, their Saviorthe children gathered near.
He looked at them and smiled, and they smiled just the same.
Then He opened His arms and He called them by name.
And in that moment was joy, that only Heaven can bring.
Those children all flew into the arms of their King.
And as they lingered in the warmth of His embrace,
One small girl turned and looked at Jesus' face.
And as if He could read all the questions she had,
He gently whispered to her, "I'll take care of mom and dad."
Then He looked down on earth, the world far below.
He saw all of the hurt, the sorrow, and woe.
Then He closed His eyes and He outstretched His hand,
"Let My power and presence re-enter this land!"
"May this country be delivered from the hands of fools."
"I'm taking back my nation. I'm taking back my schools!"
Then He and the children stood up without a sound.
"Come now my children, let me show you around."
Excitement filled the space, some skipped and some ran.
All displaying enthusiasm that only a small child can.
And I heard Him proclaim as He walked out of sight,
"In the midst of this darkness, I AM STILL THE LIGHT."

Written by Cameo Smith, Mt. Wolf, PA"

Nancy Messenger shared this picture and I wanted to share it with you.....

Sunday, December 9, 2012

12 in '12 Linky Party

I had so much fun with this linky party last year!  So when I read Miss Kindergarten's and A Teeny Tiny Teacher's posts, I knew I wanted to join in on the fun! :)

12. Favorite movie you watched:
I love to go to the movies!
Was it The Vow?  Twilight? Hunger Games? or Brave?
I can't decide!
11. Favorite TV series:
Burn Notice on USA
( but recently I started watching Revolution on NBC - Love it!)
10. Favorite restaurant:
Pei Wei - I love thier lettuce wraps and Pei Wei Spicy Chicken! Yum!
9. Favorite new thing you tried:
After a hard day at school, after I do yoga, I feel like I just drank a glass of wine!
I am loving it! A wonderful parent (also a Yoga instructor) is doing it once a week after school in our gym
and is only asking for $25 in return! (So we divide the $25 by how many show up)
Talk about a Sweetheart!
8. Favorite gift you got:
My trip to Italy (Verona and Northern Italy) with my Dad!
We took some cooking classes, visited some wineries, learned a lot about the culture and history and saw some breathtaking views!
7. Favorite thing you pinned:
I love my Aggies!!!
(I was brainwashed at birth!)
6. Favorite blog post:
I just love our Skeleton! It was so much fun to make!
Next year, I need to dress him up!
Last year he was Super Skeleton and had a cape - but this year we were on
a time crunch, so we just made a plain skeleton!
Some of the teachers at my school dressed theirs with jewelry and pom poms!
One, even put spots on theirs! (For letter Ss and because it was fire prevention month)
5. Best accomplishment:
Opening my TpT store!
I was so nervous to put items on TpT,
but I have had such great support!
(Thank you to my fabulous supporters and followers!)
4. Favorite picture:

I would love to say it is one of my Italy pictures (and I do love looking at those!)
but my favorite is always one of my children and family!
This is from our trip to Disney!
My Dad went with us and we had sooo much fun!
My son got to be a pirate and fight with Jack Sparrow.
He also got to be a Jedi Knight!
It was a very memorable trip! 
3. Favorite memory:
 My Disney trip with my kids and Dad!
My 7 year old rode every ride (even the scary ones!)
and my 13 year old was sweet to him!
(that doesn't happen very often - but it is "the happiest place on earth"!)
2. Goal for 2013:
More yoga - to calm my inner soul!
I need to find a good DVD so I can do it everyday!
Once a week is not enough!
1. One Little Word:
I so need to trust in myself and others more!

Okay, your turn!
Go link up and join the fun!

Day 9 Christmas Blog Hop

I hope you have been having a great weekend!  I have been super busy!  I want to announce the winner of my Kohl's Giveaway!

Congrats to Jennifer S.!  I hope it helps make Christmas shopping a little more fun! :)

Now on to the freebies! I hope you have been enjoying the 12 Days of Christmas Blog Hop!
If you missed the first day, you can go see Tiffani at Time 4 Kindergarten and get caught up!

My class is working on learning their numbers! I love letting them put them on a sentence strip and wear them as a hat! So I created an ornament number order freebie for you!  Just print it out, let your class color it, cut it out and glue it to a sentence strip! Then staple the ends of the sentence strip together and they can wear it on their heads! My class loves to do this!

I hope you enjoy this freebie! If you aren't a follower, I would love for you to become a follower of my blog! :)

And if you need more Christmas Math Centers, you can find my I See Christmas Reader and Math Pack at my TpT store! This freebie is included in the pack, along with numbers 11 - 20!  They would be great for a center!

Kristen's Kindergarten is Day 10 of our Blog Hop! Visit her tomorrow and see what goody she has for you! 
Kristen's Kindergarten

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

A Super Quick Kohl's Giveaway!

This Summer I did my back to school shopping for my family at Kohl's!  {You can read that post here}

It was so easy to do it all on-line!  I even picked up some cute Skippyjon Jones items! {You can read more about Skippyjon Jones at this post}

Now it's time to do some Christmas shopping! I sooo love to shop on-line in my PJ's! 

A representative from Kohl's contacted me to let me know...

"Kohl’s recently launched a tool in their toys department which allows shoppers to browse toys based on age. It makes shopping for age appropriate gifts for your kids, cousins, nieces, nephews and grandchildren a whole lot easier!"

"We are very excited about this feature and hope that you will take a moment to look around the new page" {click here}

As a thank you for letting you know about Kohl's new "shop by age" toys feature, they have given me a $50 gift card to share with you! They mailed it to me and I get to mail it to you!

All you have to do is use the Rafflecopter!  But hurry, this Giveaway ends Friday, Dec. 7th at 11:59pm!
I will announce the winner this weekend!

Please make sure to leave your email so I can contact you and the name you follow my blog as! {I will verify before I contact you! If you don't do this, you can't win - so please follow the rules!}

{Due to the cost of shipping overseas, I am going to have to limit this to the USA - Sorry for any inconvenience this may cause!}

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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