Sunday, April 29, 2012

Share-A-Blog Sunday ~ Ms. Fultz's Corner

Good Sunday morning to you!  Can you believe April is almost over already?  This year is really flying by!

In this week's edition of Share-A-Blog Sunday, Christi from Ms. Fultz's Corner stands tall in the Spotlight!

Christi does her blogging from The Buckeye State, Ohio.  Anyone else here from Ohio?

Teaching for 7 years, Christi is a 3rd grade she teaches all content areas to her students.  She has a Master's degree and a Reading Specialist License.

Listing reading and writing as her favorite subjects, Christi also says this about her blog:

"Most of my hits come for reading and writing workshop ideas, though I'm gaining on math too."

I must tell you though, I see some great math and science ideas on Ms. Fultz's Corner as well.

This is what Christi shared as one of her favorite teaching moments:

"Working with kids means there's hardly ever a dull moment, as I'm sure you know. I think my favorite was when my students found out I was engaged. One of the boys asked what that meant and another boy piped up instantly with, 'She's having a baby... duh.' So precious! I love all those moments that let me see things from a child's perspective again."

Never a dull moment, indeed!  It is so funny to hear some of the things they come up with!

Christi shared 3 things with us to help us know a little more about her:

1.  "I admired my third grade teacher so much that she honestly inspired me to grow up and be a third grade teacher too. I think she'd be pretty proud of me and hope I can be the same kind of role model for my students, no matter what they grow up to be." 

2.  "I am a terrible singer. I can't help it and it's always been that way. I sing loudly at home to my husband's dismay because it brings the joy to my heart. However, I only pretend to sing happy birthday to my students at school. I don't want to harm any of them permanently." 

3.  "I love to be crafty and find ways to tie art activities into my standards too. I think it increases motivation, effort, and excitement. I recently upgraded my embroidery machine at home and find crafting helps me balance the sometimes stressful job of teaching. I may or may not make dog clothes for our three pups. =)"

Now you know it's time for me to talk about things I've found in common with Christi.  As usual, there are quite a few!

My favorite teacher was my 9th grade Geometry teacher, Mrs. Stevens, so I can totally relate to feeling inspired to be what I am today!

I, too, can't carry a tune in a bucket...much to my husband's and sons' chagrin!

Crafting is one of my favorite hobbies and it really does help you relax and focus on something other than the classroom!

If I could sew, I would be making clothes for our 4 dogs, too!

And...we have the same school mascot...Knights!!!

After spending some extra time on Ms. Fultz's Corner, I have to say that it was difficult to narrow down my favorite thing.

I love the post Making Science Fun...I wish I had been there for that!

I also love the look and feel of her blog.  It's very fun and colorful without being hurtful on my old eyes.  I really like all the pictures within her posts as it gives you a glimpse into her everyday classroom life.

If you haven't found Christi's blog, Ms. Fultz's Corner, I encourage you to head over and check it out!

You know what to do...leave her a comment or two and tell her who sent ya!

Enjoy :)

Making It {and smiling},

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Teacher Blogger Exchange...What I Made & What I Got!

I was so excited when I found the Teacher Blogger Exchange blog because I LOVE to do crafts {even though I'm no pro by any means} and I LOVE to get gifts in the mail!

So I joined in the exchange that just ended a few days ago.

The blogger who had my name was Jennifer from First Glade Blue Skies!

I was like a kid in a candy shop when I got home and saw my package had arrived!!!

And this is the adorable gift I found inside:

I {HEART} it!  And this thing is like 2' long!  I hung it up and all my students commented on it and wanted to know where I got it.  When I told them a blogging buddy had made it for me and sent it to me, they thought that was just about the coolest thing ever {and it takes a lot to impress a 7th grader}!

Thank you SO much, Jennifer!

My partner was Andrea from One Teacher's Take!

I set off to figure out what craft I would make for my partner.  Our tastes seemed pretty similar, so it wasn't too hard to find something I felt {pretty} sure she would like!

Her information listed what color/style she used in her classroom.   "I use fushia/aqua/black colors with designs of zebra, damask, dots, & stripes."

I tried to incorporate as much of that as I possibly could into what I made for her!

Here are some pics I took along the way...

I had so much fun making these clipboards!  I plan to make one for myself as well as my Secret Pal at school!

I really, really hope Andrea liked them!

Also, I am looking forward to participating in the next exchange...

Enjoy :)

Making It {and smiling},

A Surprise, My Top Teachers' Giveaway Galore WINNER & 7 Weekly Pins ~ Week 17

I'm super excited to announce my winner from the Top Teachers' Giveaway Galore that ended at midnight!

Drum roll, please......

Pam is the author of First Class Teacher!  Congratulations!!!

Thanks to everyone who entered, liked, followed, etc....  I truly appreciate each and every one of you!  

To show you just how much, click on the image below to go to my TPT Store where I've discounted The Answer Is...What's The Question? Math Task Cards from this giveaway to JUST $1!  That's 50% OFF!!!  

This offer is good through 2 PM tomorrow...Sunday, April 29th!

Now, on to this week's 7 Weekly Pins...

I hope you'll enjoy this weekly feature and check back here often to get some inspiration for yourself!

As always, I'd LOVE for you to follow me on Pinterest!  Click here to see all my Boards.

My Own Pin

Educational Pin

Crafty Pin

Organizational Pin

Delicious Pin

Apparel Pin

Random Pin

Source: via Michelle on Pinterest

Enjoy :)

Making It {and smiling},

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Review While Moving...With Music

Teacher:  "OK class, today we're going to review __________."

Class:  Moans and groans {or wants to fall asleep like the cartoon above}

Even I hate dislike a review day, even though they are so needed, if it means I have to stand at the board and talk at my students all day!  Yes...I said 'at' instead of 'to' because I feel like that's what I'm really doing.

So, I outlawed that type of review in my classroom after about my 2nd attempt years ago!

Of course that means a little more front-end prep on my part, but I think it's so totally worth it.  Over time, I've done lots of different types of, partners, groups, etc....

What I'm sharing with you today ends up always being a big hit.  {To be honest, I'm not sure why...other than there is movement and music involved!}  I always get complete cooperation with focused, on-task behavior while students work very hard for the entire class period with this type of review.

No rocket science is needed.  It's fairly quick and easy to set up.

{Unfortunately, I've never taken pictures of this in action, so you'll have to use a little imagination here!}

I find questions, problems, whatever, that I know my students need to review.  I have as many questions as I do students...and the questions need to be numbered.

I type up the questions and print them out {typically} on bright paper.  Only one copy is needed.  Then I cut the questions apart and use packing tape to tape them down at each seat on my tables {or desks if you have them}.

Students number their papers from 1 - 25 or whatever number of students you have.

{Take a minute to make sure they understand that the question numbers and the numbers on their papers should match up.  If a student begins at question number 14's spot, she should answer it beside number 14 on her paper and so on...}

It's now time to begin!

I usually give students 1 - 2 minutes per question, depending on the types of questions I picked.

Then I play about 15 seconds of music to signal that it's time to move to the very next question number.

Yep, they move about 6" unless they need to walk a couple of feet to the next 15 seconds is plenty of time.  They must be seated when I stop the music.

Repeat until all the questions have been completed.

To go over their answers, I display the correct answers on my ActivBoard.

Students have a chance to ask questions for the ones they missed.

I'm happy!

They're happy {and they were fully engaged in the work}!

For the music, I usually try to play something about walking.  There are hundreds of songs about walking, but many of them are not appropriate for the classroom. :-(

Here are a few from across the decades that are student-friendly.  This is also a great way to introduce students to different types of music...even upbeat tunes from other countries work great.  Just pick something fun with a good beat!

Walking on Sunshine ~ Katrina and the Waves

I'm Walking ~ Fats Domino

Walk Like an Egyptian ~ The Bangles

{I am linking this post up with Rachel from Minds In Bloom.  Head over to her blog to see lots of other great ideas about incorporating movement into your classroom.}

Enjoy :)

Making It {and smiling},

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Top Teachers' Giveaway Galore

It's Giveaway time and you are not going to believe this!  Over 20 items up for grabs from AMAZING bloggers all over the USA!  It's Top Teacher's Giveaway Galore!

Contest runs from Tuesday, April 24th through Friday, April 27th at Midnight EDT.  
Winner will be announced on Saturday, April 28th!

Fill out the Rafflecopter form below for a chance to win this from me!!

  The Answer is… What’s the Question? Math Task Cards by Michelle of Making It As A Middle School Teacher: "28 numbered cards that leave the level of difficulty and specific math skill to be assessed up to you! Some students may only do basic operations, while other students may be required to do more advanced skills and give more details for their answers. Two student response options are also included!! Use for early finishers, have the whole class complete in Round Robin style, or use as a center. Pull out specific cards or use all 28 cards." (5-8) 

Monday, April 23, 2012

Math Game Monday Links Up with Manic Monday at Classroom Freebies

This week's Math Game Monday is a free game I posted a while back.  I'm sharing it again and linking up with Charity's Manic Monday at Classroom Freebies.

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

This is my Absolute Value War Card Game.  It's a fun and easy way to review absolute value skills which seem to cause many students to struggle.

You can download this freebie right here from my blog.  Click on the image below to go to my Free Stuff page and you'll see the download in the Math section.

Thank you so much for stopping by and I hope you will find this product useful!

Enjoy :)

Making It {and smiling},

Sunday, April 22, 2012

New TBA Author, 5 Star Blogger Badge, & Share-A-Blog Sunday ~ Thinking Out Loud

Happy Sunday and Happy Earth Day to each of you!

Pledge to do at least one small thing to make a difference in our's the only one we have!

As you can see from the title of this post, I have a few things to share with you.

First, I am a NEW AUTHOR on TBA!!!  Sorry to shout, but I'm over-the-moon happy!  I had to do a double-take when I received the e-mail Friday.  I'll be posting an introduction there very soon and will then begin posting on a regular basis.  So if you're not a TBA follower, you're missing out on posts from some of the best bloggers out there!  Although the blog is geared more toward lower grades, there are some new middle grades folks being added and there's always a ton of great information, printables, and freebies that you can adapt to most any grade level!

Click on the image to go to Teaching Blog Addict.

Next, I'm happy to announce that I completed the steps in the 5 Star Blogger Challenge by Charity at The Organized Classroom Blog!  I have earned my badge and will display in proudly on my sidebar.  If you are a blogger and would like to check out this challenge, click here.

5-Star Blogger

Now, on to this week's edition of Share-A-Blog Sunday where I'm spotlighting a blog that has been around for a few years now...Thinking Out Loud!

Let me just say that I love the blog design!  So cute and fresh looking.  :)

Jana from Thinking Out Loud has been a teacher for 10 years.  Six years as a 7th and 8th grade teacher and 4 years as an Instructional Coach.  She is married and has a 23-year-old cat!

Jana says what sets her blog apart from others is :

"I know that many blogs have a niche that follows a particular grade level, but my blog crosses a variety of grade levels and subjects. I taught in a classroom in 7th and 8th grade and have coached PK-12th grade teachers. My goal is to share teaching resources that can be used at any grade level."

I completely agree with her assessment!  She offers a wonderful array of ideas for many grade levels.

As for Jana's favorite teaching moment, this is what she shared:

"The last year I was a classroom teacher (before becoming an Instructional Coach), I had an independent reading time of at least 15 minutes each day. The best part was at the end when I told my seventh and eighth graders that they needed to finish the paragraph they were in and stop. Almost every day there was a collective groan because they were into their books and didn't want to stop. That is a sound that I miss now that I am not in my own classroom."

Isn't it wonderful when your students are enjoying their time at school?!  I kind of make than groan sound even now as an adult when I have to put my book away.

I'm sure many of us have aspirations of one day doing something outside of the classroom, but I'm sure we'll all miss the time with some all of our students as well.

I love the 3 things Jana shared about herself with us this week:

"1.  I didn't go to Disney World until my late twenties and I can't wait to go back. The second best time in my life. 

2.  I can't cook at all but wish I could. 

3.  Reading is my all time favorite hobby. The best series I have read recently is The Hunger Games."

Well, Jana, I still haven't been to Disney World, but I want to go.  I also love to read and I thought The Hunger Games was phenomenal!

You all know by now that I always find some things in common with my Spotlight Bloggers.  Other than reading and The Hunger Games, Jana and I share a love for Dr. Pepper!  Although I did have to switch to Diet Dr. P due to diabetes.  We also agree that Christmas is our all-time favorite holiday!

And for the thing(s) I'm most in love with at Thinking Out Loud right now...I had to pick 2 this week {I just couldn't help it}!

Jana has a Voki on her blog using her own voice.  If you aren't familiar with a Voki, well, you'll just have to visit her blog to take a look.  You can't miss it!

The latest post on Thinking Out Loud includes a screen shot video Jana created about a Smart Board lesson on sentences.  She did a fantastic job and I loved the lesson!  Way to go!

So...if you haven't found Jana and Teaching Out Loud yet, show her some bloggy love and run over to check it out.  You know the deal by now.  Leave her a comment or 2 and tell her who sent you!

Enjoy :)

Making It {and smiling},

7 Weekly Pins ~ Week 16

I hope you'll enjoy this weekly feature and check back here often to get some inspiration for yourself!

As always, I'd LOVE for you to follow me on Pinterest!  Click here to see all my Boards.

My Own Pin

Educational Pin

Crafty Pin

Organizational Pin

Delicious Pin

Apparel Pin

Random Pin

Enjoy :)

Making It {and smiling},