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June 30, 2013

Did you enter? If not - so long, farewell... :(

Down to the last few hours of this giveaway.  :)  Did you push the button?  Are you following?

I'm going to be honest.  The other day when it was Bloglovin' crazyville on the blogs, I don't think that I had a chance to enter every single giveaway.  Life got in the way.  I KNOW I went through my list of blogs and made sure I was following them though - just that was before all the giveaways started.  

On another note - today the blog AND FB reached 500 followers/likes!!!!  Double Yay!  Going to celebrate - even if tomorrow the follower thing on the side disappears... :(   

(Post is a repeat from Wednesday)
2nd post of the day - but it's worth it!! Have you entered in all the fabulous giveaways going on?  Here's another opportunity for you!  I know I've been talking about Bloglovin' for days... but now it's going to get a little fun.  :)  If you are a follower over at Bloglovin' you get a chance to win items from my stores of YOUR choice.  Check to make sure you are my new follower over there (or that it actually worked when you imported), fill out the rafflecopter below, and make sure you use your Bloglovin' user name.

Here's the link again to make sure you are really following the blog.

Let's Get Acquainted

It's time for another Let's Get Acquainted Party - this time it's a Tic Tac Toe Edition

I went to Biola University and a favorite memory included going with my friends to a dressy dinner at the Disneyland hotel.  Yes, Disneyland was 15 minutes away from school, so it was a constant source of entertainment.  I went with a group of friends, dressed in a ball gown (it was that dressy), and after the dinner we went into Disneyland with our season passes to ride some rides.

First Year of Teaching
When I graduated from Biola (Southern CA), I was offered a position at my student teaching site.  BUT I had my heart set on returning to my hometown (Northern CA) where there weren't any teaching positions available.  After a frustrating summer with only a couple of interviews, I was called 3 days before school started to interview at my own elementary school.  Only it wasn't for a classroom teacher position.  It was for a 40% science teacher position... I grabbed my student teaching Life Cycle Unit Binder (where I had been in charge of all the lessons revolving around those baby chicks) and headed out the door.  The interview went great - though it was weird being inside the principal's office.  I was offered that position, in addition to another 40% science position at another school across town.  My weeks were busy that year even with only teaching 80%.  I taught Monday & Tuesday at my old school, sharing a classroom with the other science teacher teaching 2nd, 3rd, and 5th graders.  Then on Wednesday & Thursday I went to the other school, had my own classroom, and taught 1st, 2nd, and 4th graders.  I had Fridays off so I was able to sub for the 9 classes that I taught.  I met my future husband in February of that year, and had my appendix out that March.  Awww... memories.  :) 

My Favorite Grade to Teach and Why
Over the past 13 years of teaching I've taught everything from Kindergarten to 8th grade, special education, to science, to general education.  What I really love is 4th grade.  In college I had my head wrapped around primary, I think mainly since that's what my mom taught her entire career.  I LOVE my 4th graders though.  Yes, I did leave 4th grade for 4 years because there was an opportunity to teach 2nd grade, in a non rotating room, with only 20 kids, on a year round schedule... BUT when the opportunity came back to teach 4th I jumped at it.  The kids are the perfect age for me.  They are independent, they get my jokes, and they still love their teacher.  Then you add the curriculum: California history, fun math, and literature that I still love from when I was little  - and it's the perfect combination.  :)  

I hope you go link up too!

June 29, 2013

Currently (almost) July

I already blogged this morning.  Well, actually I didn't blog - I more linked up over at Kristin and Elizabeth's Organization linky.  Then I went, responded to email (and cleaned out my email box), and then had breakfast & washed the dishes.

I came back to the computer only to find out that Farley  posted Currently EARLY!  I know I follow her on Facebook, and I guess she mentioned it over there, but I guess I haven't been on FB lately.  Oh well!!

So here you go.  My July Currently.  :)  

My boys are happily playing for the moment, I'm enjoying having a PJ morning, and yes - my living room is covered with toys - BUT they are playing happily.  

I would love to go shopping by myself one of these days... being the one that's home with the boys doesn't allow me to go very many places by myself during the summer.  I even have to lock the bathroom door to get a moment of privacy from my 3 year old.

I want to do something fun.  I need to get something on the calendar for July - a day trip or something to look forward to.  

As for a blogging tip - I've learned not to compare myself to others.  I'm me and I'm glad I'm me.  Yes, even without comparing myself to others, sometimes I get stuck on the fact that I'm SO CLOSE to 500 followers...and that will most likely be going away on Monday... but there are more important things in life than a number. :)  I've met some great people, I've been able to have these amazing opportunities, and I still love being a teacher.  I'm thankful for all your support.  :)  

Have a great day!  

Optimum Organization: Cords and Sandpails

Saturday (pretend to be an organized person) Time!  Linking up this morning with Kristen & Elizabeth for their weekly linky.

This week I wanted to share 2 little tidbits that worked well this past year.

This pin was floating around last year - it worked brilliant to keep all those cords organized under the computer table and near my teaching cart.  
Not my own picture - but the pin that is floating around Pinterest.  Same idea.
Since that was such a small little thing (of course remembering to save the bagel and sandwich tabs was a big thing), I wanted to share something else that I guess I never took a picture of.

Sand pails

During summer they are super cheap, but they held up to the rigors of life in my classroom.  I have them in my class colors (red, yellow, green, blue) and I stuck labels on them for the different purposes.  I store them throughout the classroom.  

*Centers pail - "Missing Pieces"

*By the door - "Lost and Found"

*On top of the bookshelf I have 3 - "Crayons" pail, "Markers" pail, and "Colored Pencils" pail.

*By the Bucket Filler mailboxes I have 2 - one pail is for index card cards labeled "Someone was a bucket filler when..." and the other one is labeled "Mailbox" for the ones waiting for me to deliver.

*I also have 2 blank ones that have been wonderful for when I need to lug water from the office sink to the classroom for art projects (I don't have water in my portable).  

I got them at the end of the summer stuff - so basically they were 75% off this past summer.  Can you say cheap!?!  The handles are a bonus.

Hope this helped someone!

June 28, 2013

Five for Friday

Linking up with Doodlebugs Teaching to share 5 things from my week.  You might have seen some of these over on Instagram.  :)

This past week I realized that my vacation is about halfway over and that I had yet to even start on my to do list...  that scared me!  So I got busy...

First up I made one of my first math units to tackle - after place value and rounding comes adding & subtracting multi-digit numbers.  My intermediate kids have to go up to 4 numbers with and without regrouping, and they usually need some practice.  Insert some cute apple task cards (since we will be doing this in September).    
Then I was busy with my boys in the kitchen.

Yep, yep - pancakes on a Thursday morning AND Trix Treats.  :) Yummy!

I also went shopping a bit... wanted to share what I picked up.  The online shopping bug has really kicked into high gear!  

Clip art from Ashley Hughes

Apples {Graphics for Commercial Use} Biomes {Graphics for Commercial Use}Math Symbols {Graphics for Commercial Use}

Dice {Graphics for Commercial Use}Technology Set 1 {Graphics for Commercial Use}

Mentor Sentences from Jivey

First 10 Weeks: Mentor Sentence UnitSecond 10 Weeks: Mentor Sentence UnitThird 10 Weeks: Mentor Sentence Unit

Back to School Stuff from Jennifer Findley

Back to School Reading and Writing Activities {Common CoreBack to School Math Centers for 4th Grade {Common Core AliSchool Rules! {And Procedures, Too!} Activities and Printa

Back to School Activity Pack by Katie Texas

Back to School Activity Packet : Welcome to 4th Grade

Alphabet Clip Art by Workaholic NBCT

Bright and Colorful Alphadoodles Alphabet Letter Clip Art Set

I bought the Amazon Dry Erase Deal

These babies were on sale from $21.99 to $6.99 a box!!!

I have to learn to say NO soon... of course next week or the next the sales will be in the stores and I do have to buy school supplies for these new kiddos...

I did play some games... 

We both didn't realize someone had already won...
... and last I started prepping stuff for next year.  This was a biggie that I've had FOREVER (I'm exaggerating) but needed to wait for time and patience and ink to print.  I still have to laminate it, but that's another day...    


Did you enter the Bloglovin' Giveaway?  Just click here to see that you are really following, then head to the giveaway to enter the Rafflecopter.  

Hope you have a great day!  

June 27, 2013

2 Linky Parties: Ten Pin Math and Throwback Thursday

Good morning everyone!  Before I dive into the point of blogging today, wanted to remind you of the Bloglovin' giveaway and the School To Do linky going on from yesterday.  

Linking up today with Ashley over at Just Reed with 10 math pins from my Math Board.  Click on any of the images and it will take you to the pin, then onto the blogs/websites.

Math Notebooking Journals - free printable
I'm excited to start Math Journals this next year...

Fancy Free in Fourth: A Fact Family Neighborhood

...and I want to start out the year with a Fact Family Neighborhood.

Think you don't need Math? FREE poster

This will be one of the first things I share with the kids...

Live, Laugh, Love, Teach: soccer ball multiplication

...and I want to incorporate more fun math fact games.

Nice set of student guidelines for work in math stations.

This past year I started doing math centers, I enjoyed them immensely.  I want to set it up similar to this Daily 5 math to match all the other Daily 5 anchor charts.  

In their lapbooks/interactive notebooks, I want to remember to use toothpicks for geometry, 

LCM Math Journal

and to use this "M" strategy during factors and learning LCM.  

Math Conference Notes - Ladybug's Teacher Files
With Teacher Time, I want to add this aspect on when checking in with kids.

Freebie Top 25 Tools and Foods to Teach Fractions-Chart - so cute!

Fractions are almost always the most difficult for my 4th graders to learn, so I like this list of ideas to make it more interesting.  
Squinkies! Coordinate Points Graphing FREEBIE!

I also love this freebie to make coordinate points a fun review.  

Then I'm linking up with Cara from The First Grade Parade for a post from way back when...

actually September 6, 2012 at 5:29 pm

Regions Maps

Last Friday we created our Region Maps.  The students had to bring in 2 cups of flour and 1 cup of salt in a gallon sized bag.  For homework they also had to practice drawing our state.  My wonderful parent helpers came to help monitor the students as we poured 1 cup of water into the bags, sealed them up, and they gently "massaged" the bag to make a cookie dough type mixture.  

A wonderful school mom donated 12x12 cardboard pieces from her business, so the students had to draw our state nice and large on the boards.  They then had to form the different regions, making sure to remember San Francisco Bay, the different mountain ranges, the large valley in the middle of the state, and a nice flat area for the desert in the southern area.  Once again, with this group of kids, I am so glad for extra eyes.  

So yesterday was painting day after they dried all weekend long.  I put the kids into groups of 6 or 7, and they shared the same color.  There is no need to wash out brushes between colors.  They just sit and work until it's time to switch spots.  We do the set up outside on the ground.  3 bowls of paint per group and I use tiny little brushes for all colors except the Ocean.  Those need the big brushes or they will never finish.  This year I also pulled out the laminated maps that came with the S.S. curriculum and labeled the specific areas they needed to paint when they went to that station.  The students only needed between 5-10 minutes per color, and no one switched until they were all ready to get up and move.  5 switches later and they were all done.  
 The Coast was purple.
 The Desert was yellow.
 The Valley was green.
 Mountains were brown.
 The Ocean (which I had them mark a X on the correct side of our state before we headed outside) was blue.  
When we came inside we took 1/2 pieces of index cards and created a Legend.  These are on their desks drying overnight.  I think these projects might be going home tomorrow.  :)  Have a good night!  

I hope you enjoyed this walk down memory lane.  Since that post I did make up a Regions Pack to add more depth to my regions lessons.  It is posted in my store.  Maybe it can help someone. :)

Have a great day!