Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Morning Meeting Greetings

One of the things I am horrible about when I do Morning Meeting is mixing up the greetings I use! I kind of find myself always drawn to just a couple of them. I've been wanting to take the time to create a little book of greetings so that I could have a handy, dandy set of cards with a greeting on each card. Although these greetings are not my original ideas, I have modified some of them. I've also made them all uniform and easy to print. Most of the ideas came from Origins and my teacher friends. I didn't use all of the ideas on the Origins website and they also have ideas for activities, acknowledgements, etc. so if you're looking for more ideas, check them out!

Here's the cover page for the cards:

Here's an example of one of the greetings:

If you want to purchase these go to TeachersPayTeachers.

I would appreciate any constructive feedback as I am new to selling and want to improve my products as needed.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Angry Bird Birthday Party

Ok...so today's post belongs more under the blog Parenting without Tears, but as I've been busy replanning my son's birthday party...he last minute decided to go with an Angry Birds theme instead of Legos...I decided to go ahead and blog about that today.

While waiting for his cupcakes to mix, here's my boy announcing to the world that he's 5! Yes, 5! Note the Angry Bird shirt!

Back up a moment...and here he is pouring the ingredients in the mixer bowl for his cupcakes...

The flag that I was going to hang up outside, but then upon further reflection realized we wouldn't be in the front yard, so we wouldn't see it. Alas, we hung it up in the dining room and will be hanging it on his new Angry Birds wall in his room (he currently has a Cars wall and a Super Hero wall).

Some other decorations....Angry Bird balloons and a banner....there was a white balloon, too, but the kids had played with them and I couldn't find it when I went to take the picture. Needless to say, it was found later and my husband snapped a picture for me.

Here's one of the games we played. This game was Pin the Beak on the Angry Bird. It was SOOOO easy and would work for any theme. I went to Walmart, bought a poster, and went to the teacher store to laminate it (only $0.75!). Then I scanned the beak part of the poster, added the kids' names in the Angry Bird font (incidentally it's called Feast of Flesh - REALLY?!), printed the beaks, and cut them out. Then we threw the poster up on the wall (using painter's tape) and we were good to go. We'll be putting this up in his room on his new Angry Bird wall, too!

Here's the life size Angry Birds game we played in the backyard. We had boxes set up on the other side of the yard that they aimed at.

Favor bags were very easy - I bought the hard plastic cups (we have a ton of these and my kids love them) and filled them with a small Angry Birds kite, a frisbee flier (which wasn't Angry Birds so I printed small circles with Angry Birds in them and glued them over what was there), a bottle of bubbles (which I wanted to print a label for to put over the original one and just ran out of time to do so), and Angry Bird tattoos.

Here's our watermelon we filled with fruit. I had thought about printing pieces to put on the watermelon to make it look like the pig (kind of like I did with the balloons above) but could never come up with a way to attach them to the watermelon that I liked. In fairness, it wasn't really that important to me, so I really didn't brainstorm all that much.

Ok...last picture...this is the red Angry Bird cupcake the kids decorated. They used jelly beans, black licorice, monster eyes, jellied orange fruit slices, and a sliced marshmallow.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Spelling Extensions

Ok, so I'm going to try to post something at least every few days - hopefully something helpful! Today I'm going to post some pictures I took while my students were working on spelling centers and will later be adding some spelling files to my TeachersPayTeachers site. Even though I teach fifth grade, my students love Wednesdays and Thursdays because they get to pick HOW to study their spelling words!

In the first picture, students are using rubber stamps to practice their words. This was their first time doing this, so they're all at desks, neatly organized. However, typically they spread out whereever they want to work.

In the second picture, students are using stencils to practice their words.

In the third picture, students are working together to put their words in alphabetical order. First, students write their words on index cards, then they use the pocket chart to put their words in order. Finally, they record their words (in ABC order) on paper. Although they are in a small group, since they don't all have the same spelling words, they do this independently. Once a student has their words in order in the pocket chart, the other members of the group check his/her work before the words are recorded.

In the fourth picture, students are using magnetic letters to practice their words. Some students choose to use cookie sheets (from the dollar store), others prefer to use one of the magnetic white boards, and still others choose to use the side of the magazine rack I got when Hollywood Video was going out of business that I then painted using magnetic paint.

It'll take a few days (or weeks), but I'm hoping to finalize my spelling extensions (inspired by my friend Sarah K.) project and put it up on TeachersPayTeachers.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Apple Noun Sort

So yesterday I finished my first project to put up on Teachers Pay Teachers. It serves a purpose, but I can't help thinking it isn't as cutesy as so much else out there on TPT. I'm not sure if I'm just not a cutesy enough designer, if it's because I teach older grades, or what. That said, I'm excited because it's useful to ME! I've put a couple of examples of what it looks like below. I'm now off to make a center for proper and common nouns.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Besides my marriage and children, teaching is the most rewarding thing I've every done. However, just like a good marriage and raising children, teaching is hard. Sometimes it seems impossible. I've seen some really great blogs lately, and these incredible educators have not only given me some great ideas, but have made teaching easier for me. Given time, I hope my blog can provide inspiration for other teachers, too.