Simple and Sporty Writing Activity!

Need a writing activity to help your students practice comparing and contrasting?!  Try this:

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Fair isn't....

As a teacher and a mother I'm sure I've heard the worlds "No FAIR!" 
at least 3,492 {or more} times! 
Those words are such a common refrain that I think kids
 truly don't understand the meaning of FAIR.  

Click on over to get a FREE copy of this printable sign to
 help remind your students that....

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Dive into Endings-an awesome *freebie*

Are you ready for a game that you can use ALL YEAR??? Hop on over to Heather's Heart to dive into a GREAT game for word endings!

From My Heart to Yours,
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Singing Penguins

Come on over and read about these singing penguins.  Curious?  Click on the little guys below.

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Pinterest Classroom Party Ideas Galore!

I have just updated my Winter Pinterest board and it has tons of winter party ideas, gift suggestions, and great academic lessons!  Make sure to head over to The Organized Classroom Blog today to check out five that I highlighted, and then stop at my Pinterest board to see the rest!

See you there!
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Happy Hanukkah!

Hey Friends!
In all my years of teaching, I never felt great about the activities I did surrounding Hanukkah. Typically, about half of my class celebrates Hanukkah and half celebrate Christmas. I also have several who celebrate aspects of both holidays in some way or another. I have tons of great Christmas and generic winter activities, but I never loved my Hanukkah stash...until now! I recently designed some hands-on, engaging activities that I think my kids will really appreciate.  Stop by my blog to check it out!

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Classroom Teacher Resources

TBA has recently become aware of a great new teaching resource, especially for those new to the profession or changing grade levels.  Classroom Teacher Resources, created and managed by teacher Betsy Weigle, is a content rich, easy to navigate website designed to help highly motivated and dedicated teachers become highly effective teachers and facilitate student success.

Betsy's site is full of great information and ideas.  One of the best features is that it can take a new teacher straight from college to classroom and will continue providing great tools for every step along the way.  Not sure which college to select?  Where should I become certified?  There are also sections for your student teaching, finding a teaching position, and substitute teachers, all right here in the resource center. 

So now, the dream come true and you have your own classroom.  Months of moving things around, working with a mentor teacher to find your way around the school, and then it happens.  The students arrive.  Think back to your first few months as a teacher.  You needed something.  An attendance sheet.  A sub plan template.  A field trip checklist.  Anybody remember how stressful these were to create?  It can be a bit overwhelming, especially when you've got papers to grade, unexpected appearances from the parents, and students just plain being kids. 

Of course creating one of these documents is no problem, you could have done it in 20 minutes in college.  But who has 20 minutes now?  Creating any of them plus the 500 other documents a new teacher will try, change, then retry, is very time consuming and takes away from what a new teacher should really be focusing on: working with students, planning, and teaching strategy.  Documents such as these, and many more are available in Betsy's free download center.  This is a great tool to help spend your time where you really need it to be spent, with the kids.

Betsy Weigle in the classroom

Moving past the basics, Classroom Teacher Resources then takes a deep dive into all of the key categories that really "make" a teacher.  Classroom Management, Team Building, Classroom Discipline, Teachable Moments and many other facets of being a teacher are represented with very easy to follow and apply strategies for success.  Betsy does a fantastic job of stating why something should be occurring, which truly helps a new teacher make good decisons on their own.

Classroom Teacher Resources of course transitions on beyond the early years of teaching, and covers many more topics of interest, including technology, school improvement, and best practices.  Teachers of all experience level would likely be interested in the free monthly newsletter, Q&A sessions, and website guide.  Betsy also provides plenty of great strategies for working with students, parents, and other teachers as your career progresses.

I'd like to also note that Betsy devotes a significant amount of her site to the Teachers Homeless Student Action Center and is a major advocate for this charity.  Please take a moment to visit her site and view some of the staggering statistics regarding homeless students, and how you can help.  As Betsy states on her site, "Teachers can help kids from a homeless family feel "normal" at school. It may only be for six hours a day, but those six hours are the difference between success and failure."  This is a truly inspiring initiative that Betsy and others have undertaken.  

Teachers of all experience levels and grade levels will likely want to take a look at this great resource.  You can visit Classroom Teacher Resources on the web, Facebook, or sign up for the free monthly newsletter.

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Elf on a Shelf Freebie!

I am soooo excited about doing Elf on a Shelf with my kiddos. Come by and read what we are doing and grab an Elf freebie. J

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Linear Measurement Foldable

I am folding, folding away over at Thinking of students and I started off our Measurement unit with a vocabulary foldable.

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Jingle A-Weigh

Hop on over to Heather's Heart for a super fun math activity that I know your kiddos will love!

From My Heart to Yours,
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Fluxtime is a free, online animation program for kids. Find a description of Fluxtime and an example on my blog, Teaching...My Calling. How could you use Fluxtime in your classroom?

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Division, You Can't Scare Me!

Hop over to my blog to check out some simple strategies and activities to help your students get more familiar with division and its termonology!
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A Christmas Pinterest Project!

Yes Pinterest has struck again! But this is an adorable project! And cheap and easy! I also linked it up in the TBA Christmas Ideas Week post, but didn't want anyone to miss this project!

Come on over to my blog and check out the pictures!

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Come And Get It: Weather Web Quest Freebie!

Come on over to Middle School Survival Guide to discuss "Web Quests"...
 grab a brand-new Weather-themed Web-Quest FREEBIE!

 (+ grab last month's "Symmetry Web-Quest" AND  "Acids, Bases, and pH" Web-Quest Freebie 
if you haven't done so already....)

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Fables Update

I've added a few additional differentiated pages to the fables unit a few minutes ago.  My kids had an enjoyable time working on similes. A few of my babies needed a little extra support.   If you purchased the file this yesterday or today, please link here to redownload.  

My kids had a hard time with the metaphor 'you are what you eat' so I changed it to 'time is money'.  SUCCESS!  I did find a minor spelling mistake as we read The Tortoise and The Hare.  JUST TO AIR OUT MY DIRTY LAUNDRY.  (((WINK)))  

As always, I appreciate your support!  

Here are a few similes created today!

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Christmas Do A Dot (FREEBIE)

I can't wait to start my Christmas unit with my kiddies.  I have begun creating printables to use with them. I hope you enjoy!

Click the image to download.

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How To Eat a Gingerbread Man Writing Unit (freebie)

Come grab my latest writing unit for free.

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Magic Behavior Pack!

So I think we all know about the Elf on the Shelf...wouldn't it be wonderful to be able to use that trick in our classrooms all year?  Well, now you can...sort of (the same concept, but without a Christmas Elf hanging around all year). 

Introducing Kari the Classroom Fairy!!!!  I am so excited to have finally turned my best behavior management trick into a pack to offer my fellow teaching friends!

Classroom management is one of the most difficult, but most important parts of a teacher's job! Sometimes a class can get the best of us and we have to pull out some tricks!!! Kari the Classroom Fairy is the "trick" you need!!! Believe it or not, even the boys go crazy for Kari!

Implement Kari in your classroom and watch your classroom management shine! Your coworkers and administrators will be dazzled!

Included in this magical pack are the following:
*The Legend of Kari the Classroom Fairy story
*4 Choices of Fairies to print
*Various "Star Notes" from Kari to your class
*Template for your students to write to Kari
*Teacher tips to successfully implement this behavior management technique
*A "Fairy Good!" behavior bingo pack
*Parent Letter

Are you a mentor to a new teacher? Do you have a student teacher? This pack would make a fabulous gift!

As a teacher who has used this for many years, I can honestly say it works wonders!!! Not only is it fun for your students, but their behavior improves drastically!

If you are interested in Kari the Classroom Fairy, click on the image below!

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A Penny CAN Change the World

Click the Image to see how 1 cent can Change the World

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First Grade and Fabulous: So leave a peppermint stick for old St. Nick ---Hanging on the Christmas tree

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Frindle Storyboard

Well, after a little blogging break I am back at it again and I have a new reading project that my students and I have been working on...a storyboard for the novel Frindle by Andrew Clements. Come on over to Thinking of Teaching to check it out.

And...I have a freebie for you as well!!
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One Day....What are you REALLY teaching??!!!???

Today I needed a reminder and a little bop on the you feel like you need one too at times? =)

One day our kiddos will show everything they have learned in our rooms. Hop on over to Heather's Heart if you want to read about your kiddos learning more than just the curriculum.

From My Heart to Yours,
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Christmas Tree at the Wall

What an amazing community service project! Your kids can create Christmas ornaments to be placed on the Vietnam Memorial Christmas Tree. Click here for all the information.

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Saving a Little Green

If you are like me, you LOVE a good sale or discount! This time of year we can use a little extra cash right? Many retailers offer teacher discounts....come on In The Teachers' Lounge to learn about some discounts and maybe share a few too!

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