Tuesday, July 31, 2012


Pocket Full of Kinders

Please stop by and visit me today at Pocket Full of Kinders! I’m guest blogging again for the awesome, keep ‘em laughing, superstar teacher, Ms. Shuna Patterson. I was beyond excited to have the opportunity to hang out in her neck of the woods again and she’s promised to come over and check on us in the near future.  I can’t wait! 

Click on her cute button above to hop over and see what I REALLY NEED some help with!  PlllllllEEaassse!!! ;-)

Enjoy your Tuesday evening!

Monday, July 30, 2012


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….your dining room table has now become the home office,

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you’re stirring your dinner, while watching the laminator to see if its ready for another sheet,

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and your kids ask you where they can sit because your sofa is covered with materials you’re cutting out for the new year! OMG, you can tell exactly where I’ve been plopped down cutting ‘til my little heart’s content, LOL! Do you think I need to pick a different spot? Give the poor chair a break? Does anyone else’s house look like this?  Please tell me that its not just me, lol!

July has come and is almost gone.  It’s time to get down to the nitty gritty folks! I’m so excited to have prepped the “look” of my classroom because now my brain can move on to what we’re going to “do” in the midst of all the cuteness!

AND can I just say that my little rainbow labels turned out so pretty! :-) I know that I’m a little biased, but I just love them!  I can already picture them in place!

Our daily schedule is what drives the how, when, what, and where so I thought I’d share that with you today along with a fantastic find to help begin establishing the routines of The Daily 5.
schedule It took me a little while to wrap my mind around creating our schedule because it changed some from last year, but I finally figured out a good flow for us and am actually looking forward to the change.  Our new schedule allowed for a dedicated time for us to work on writing, another of my loves because its so closely tied to reading success.

As I created our schedule, I was also all smiles to still have my nice lonnnnnnng block of uninterrupted time for literacy.  THAT is my FAVORITE 2 hours of the WHOLE day! One of the things that stood out to me in reading D5 was that students should spend a minimum of one and a half hours a day reading in school (in addition to instructional time). With a dedicated writing time scheduled earlier in the day, we can focus on grammar at that time and leave our reading time strictly to strategies that will help us grow as readers. *LOVE*

As I’ve been preparing for the new year, I’ve also been on the hunt for book boxes.  I never realized how expensive those bad boys are! The cheapest that I found was $45 for a set of 25 and that was for cardboard, not plastic!  Well, you know teachers are all about a bargain….

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…so after talking with my teaching bestie, we’ve been on the hunt! Can you guess where she found some for a whole whopping $1.00 each! You guessed it! Target’s $1 spot to the rescue!

Now, normally, I would want these to all match.  When she called to say that she had found some for a $1, I could’ve cared less what they looked like, lol! They could’ve had purple, polka dotted zebras riding giraffes on them and I would’ve still bought them! Did I mention that she was 2 hours away when she called?  Man! Between her, my sister, and myself, we were scouring every Target within a 2 hour radius to make sure we had complete class sets! Calling, texting, emailing…..we were on a mission!

If you live locally, forget about it….until they restock, lol! They’re all in my living room!  AND (call me) if you find anymore!!! HA!  Thanks, Chicas!

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Though they’ll be mismatched {Yes, I’ll get over it!}, I’ll bring their look together by using matching labels for student numbers.  These labels will also double as the numbers for my calendar from The Rainbow Room set.

Before I go, I wanted to tell you about a little change you might notice.  I had been using the comment pop up box. When I leave a comment on another blogger’s blog, its a nice feature, because, well, the comments come to you!  It keeps you from having to scroll all the way down the screen.  BUT!!!!!!!! I had a ton of returned emails this weekend, after trying to reply via email, so I decided to change my comments to embedded it so that I can jump in and reply in the comments thread.

When you reply via email using the handy dandy iphone, you can’t see whether or not a friend is a no-reply blogger or not, so I made that change to prevent getting so many returned emails.  If you’re interested in changing the settings for your comments so that bloggers can connect with you via email, click here to read a great post by Lori from Teaching With Love and Laughter.

Now! If you stuck around all the way to the end {thanks}….grab the picture below and link up to finish the sentence:  You might be a teacher IF…..  Share how you know it’s that time of year for you! 

you might be a teacher linky

Friday, July 27, 2012



Hi, friends! How are ya?

In the words of  Tony the Tiger……..I feel GRRRRRRRRRREAAAATTTT!! Why, you ask?  Welllll, yesterday I was surprised by two messages notifying me that I had won TWO giveaway prizes! Now, generally, I would say that I don’t win anything!

I was in shock! Me?! Who? Won? Get out of here!  Really?!!! I was actually in the middle of writing a blog post and had to go back in and edit it to share the excitement of winning BOTH giveaways!

My winning streak, actually started last Friday with a giveaway at my church! We have an upcoming conference for women and were kicking it off with a super fun pep rally just for us girls!

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There were some really good giveaways…including one that began with a C and ended with an OACH! When my pastor pulled the first name from the basket, read it and it was mine, I was in shock! What shocked me even more {and I will love her forever for it} is that she pronounced it correctly! When my sister friend sitting next to me started to lose it, I realized that it REALLY was my name that she had called and headed down the aisle Price is Right style!!!

I won the very first prize of the night, some “smell goods” from Bath and Body Works!

You might remember my blog post from a couple of days ago about some great giveaways I had found in Blogland?   I blogged about 3 and won 2 of the 3!!

How often does that ever happen?


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Remember this little cutie pie?  Yep! I won the Easi-Speak voice recorder from Learning Resources! It will be a big help during fluency assessments.  This giveaway was hosted by Lori from Teaching With Love and Laughter!  She just plain ole rocks!  Thanks, Lori!

I’ll be skipping all the way to the mailbox every day until it arrives!

Right after I read Lori’s email, in came another message from Dani at Patterson’s Porch! My head began to spin! I couldn’t believe what I was seeing! You won my giveaway! You get the $10 TPT gift card!  Thanks, Dani!

Patterson's porch

Say what?!!! Both of these ladies rank pretty high in the blogosphere for me, so it was especially exciting winning prizes from giveaways held on their blogs! Please click either of their blog’s names to visit them!  You’ll be glad you did!  Thanks again, Lori and Dani!

Now, I’m gonna run because I’ve got a little shopping to do…..hmmm, what do I already have on my wish list? :-)

Have a fab Friday, blog buds! AND the next time you see a giveaway that interests you, take the time to enter! You never know, it could just be YOUR lucky day! :-)

Thursday, July 26, 2012



I’ve been sitting at my computer lost in Blogland for a ridonkulous amount of time getting to know lots of fab bloggers a little better through Amy Lemmons’ Tell Me More Linky. {lightbulb!} Why don’t I tell you a little more?

So, I hopped over here to join in the fun! Bloggers are some very interesting people! I have got to get out more, lol!


1.   I enjoy doing hair.  When I was growing up, I did mine, my mom’s, my grandmother’s and always experimented on my little sister.  I’d cut it, style it….they even trusted me to put chemicals in it! AND we all still have hair! Hahaa! Best of all, God blessed me with 2 beautiful daughters with a head full of it! My own personal barbies…

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BUT, strangely enough…I keep mine super short because I don’t like to feel it touching my skin and my oldest daughter cut off every inch of her long locks as soon as she got the chance!

2.  I *LOVE* to take pictures! I take pictures of EVERYTHING! I’m a super visual person! You’ll see a lot of my son if you follow my blog faithfully. My daughter, Deja, not so much….she literally runs when I pull out the handy dandy iPhone to snap one.

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My collection includes several of them with the Old Navy modelquins! Hahahaa!!! Am I the only one that does this?  I’ve got tons of them for every season and Old Navy sale, lol!

3.  Teaching is a definite passion.  Luckily, I’ve always had the honor of being a part of some awesome teaching teams!  Nothing makes going to work easier than enjoying the people that you work with!

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I worked with these ladies my very first year in 1st grade and they are absolutely INCREDIBLE!  Even though we’re now spread across different states and campuses, we still collaborate and keep in touch with one another.

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I’ll miss this crazy crew, this year too! We had lots of fun and dramatic moments opening a new campus together last year, so much so, our team was nicknamed “The Drama Queens”! Can you say, BIG PERSONALITIES? :-)

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4. I despise the work that it takes to paint a room, but *LOVE* the end product, so I’ve been working through each room of my house adding a touch of color. 

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5.  My two favorite colors? Pink and Green.  Their an ode to my college sorority! We have a local graduate chapter full of amazing women, but the demands of being a wife, mommy, and teacher have had to come first.  One day, when there’s a little more me time, I’ll rejoin my pretty sisters of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.

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6.  Something that I really don’t like?  Being outside. Heat.Cold. Bugs, yuk! {Deathly afraid of dogs and the dentist} Vegetables. Tight clothes. Sea food, though I love fish. Missing a great shoe sale, lol!

7.  My favorite movies are all kid’s movies! What can I say?  I’m a big kid! Most of what I see is animated.  I’m a mommy and a wife to an Army NCO. Most of his time is dedicated to caring for his soldiers or committing to deployments.  We appreciate all he does to defend our freedom and provide for our family. While Daddy’s working, mommy has to do SOMETHING to keep the natives entertained.

My absolute favorite is Meet the Robinsons! It reminds me of my crazy, quirky family!

8.  I’m the ONLY one of my siblings that does not have a tattoo! Meeting with a needle for recreational purposes is not on my list of favorite things to do either!

9.  Whenever I feel discouraged or down, this is what I have to remind myself of and know that everything…………….eventually………….will be okay.

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10.  I do my best work late at night and I love to laugh! I’ve been told, I have quite the comedic timing.  I won’t give up my day job just yet, but nothing is better for the soul than a good laugh!

 I’ve also discovered that I have a little mini-me that is quite the clown too! I wish his 2nd grade teacher well, lol! And I hope she enjoys a good ha-ha as much as he does!

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Well, that’s me in a nutshell, for now! Silly, quirky, photographer, creative….me! See ya soon, blog buds! I hope you’ll enjoy Amy’s Linky as much as I have!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012



I’m participating in 2 linkies {July 25, 2012}! My entire TPT store is discounted by  20%!  I’m joining in with two groups of awesome teachers to bring you some summer shopping goodness!

The first is from Blog Hoppin!

The second is from Elementary Matters.

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You can click either of the pictures to check out the fab bloggers that have joined into each linky!  TPT will be down from 12 midnight tonight until 8 am tomorrow morning for maintenance.

Happy shopping and Merry Christmas everybody!

The Rainbow Room


Hi, Friends!

I did it! I finally finished it! Well….I believe I have.  It’s done for now, lol! I’ve completed the labels that we will be using  to set up for the school year.  We still have about 4 weeks before we have to go back, BUT you know my mind is already on setting up the classroom.

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Last year, one of the things that my students enjoyed the most was a quick transition game we played called, “What’s the Password?”. As we entered the room throughout the day, they were required to read a word printed on the mini poster outside of our classroom door. The words were pulled from our sight word list for the week.

After lunch, it was done limbo style with my arm extended across the doorway.  They didn’t know it…..but playing this little game was also an incentive to hurry out of the bathroom, so we could move on with our day! Ha!


This is what our little mini poster will look like this year!  As I put this little set together, I tried to think of the basics we would need to start the year and worked from the doorway into the room….

{Stick with me, there’s something in it for you!}


….and voila! Word wall, cubby tags, table tags, calendar, book bin labels….oh my! Room 113 is ready to go! Do you think my students will pick up on the fact that I like pink?  It’s so funny, how quickly they get to know you. Luckily, its not just for girls anymore! I love the colors of this digital pack of paper.  It’s the rainbow, but with a calm color combo so that its not too overwhelming.  If you’ve never visited DreamLike Magic…stop by some time and check out what Alicia has to offer.  I love her work!

I missed Manic Monday this week, but didn’t want to leave you without a freebie, so I’ve prepped a part of our little classroom set to share with you! 


I saw this behavior clip chart on Pinterest.  You can check out a great Q&A post about it {here}.  It was created by Stephanie at 3rd Grade Thoughts.  I really appreciated the insight she shared about using the clip chart with Whole Brain Teaching in her classroom. 

I have not been trained on Whole Brain Teaching, but was in search of a positive way to address classroom behavior.  There are those days where the rainbow is a little harder to see than others!

This chart will allow for the opportunity of redemption and flexibility.  We all make mistakes.  What’s important is that we learn from them.  Each student will start the day on “ready to learn” and “clip up or down”, as warranted. Those that rise to the occasion, will go home with a simple sticker in their daily folder.  Those that don’t, will not.  Simple.

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This is what the chart we will be using will look like…..AND you can use it too! Click {here} to grab it and enjoy!  Thanks for sticking around allllll the way to the end! Be sure to check back often. It’s crunch time, so there will be many more back to school freebies to come!

Have a terrific Tuesday!

Friday, July 20, 2012



Hi, friends! I was awakened by that mean old alarm clock today and then promptly introduced it to my real friend…..the snooze button, lol!!! After coming to my early morning senses, I made it up and ventured out to pick up a few things.  I decided against the big sale that I had mentioned because I realized that I don’t need any BIG things!

I’m working on labels and decor that will be the perfect fit for my room and realized I only needed a few, cheap little things to pull it all together.

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…like our desktags.  These are the quick stick kind that don’t stay stuck! This year, I’m going to cover them with laminate film and see if that helps.  I also picked up some word strips for adding reading strategies to our CAFE board, plain boarder for the “rainbow” and my 5,677th pocket chart! I’m sure that I must have at least that many, if not more!

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Many of you that scrapbook may have one of these.  I’ve been eyeing one for awhile and finally decided to pick one up to help prep for back to school.  I will be our grade level leader this year and am working to prep all the little pieces of my room, so that when we go back I will have time to help the newbies coming onto our team.

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Now, I can print and cut a little faster.  It works with pages up to 17 inches in width. With this little addition, I think the home office (aka dining room table that I’ve taken over) is just about complete!  All I need now is a copier…oh, wait a minute…my crazy printer does that….{when it works}!

That ridonkulous thing actually STOPPED printing in the middle of a print job today to tell me that I needed to INSTALL a printer! Shut the front door! Say what??!!!!!!!! I took that as I sign that I should go take a nap!  AND, I did!

Back to the drawing board tomorrow…

Before I walked away, frustrated with it, I created this little mini-poster.  It matches the one that I made to describe the 3 Ways to Read a Book.  Just in case you missed it, you can click {here} to grab it.


It’s Freebie Friday, so be sure to grab this one too before you go!  I think my little follower counter thingy may be stuck, so if you REALLY like it….tell a friend to come over and follow today too! Let’s just double check to see if its still working?! :-)

You can also find it at Teaching My 3 where I’m guest blogging today! I’m discussing Chapter 2:  The Joy of Reading. Head over and check out what DJ and I did to explore the stages of reading development from Playful Learning by Mariah Bruehl.

Teaching My 3

See ya you there!

Thursday, July 19, 2012



Yesterday, I told you I’d come back with another great giveway….well, are you ready for it?  This one’s for an awesome prize as well. Do you ever wish you could have an easy to use recording tool for fluency practice or assessment?

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If you have, you should visit my friend, Lori. The giveaway is super easy to enter and this is the tool that you could possibly win for your classroom!  Isn’t he a cutie?  Her Easi-Speak USB recorder giveaway is being sponsored by Learning Resources! ~Great stuff!


Be sure to check it out!

Is cutesifying a real word?

According to spell check, it most certainly isn’t.  Let’s create it, shall we? My blog isn’t the only thing that’s been on the list for cutesifying this summer.  This wonderful orange wall is a picture of my last painting project.  I love color and I’ve been adding some to my house one room at a time…

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Like the doodles? That was the fun part!  And where did I get the idea, you ask?  Pinterest, of course, lol! Next on the list is my bedroom, IF I can figure out what color I’d want to use! My bathroom is a yummy mocha color…I’m thinking that I will probably just go a shade darker in my room. Nothing like waking up every day to the feel of being wrapped in chocolate!

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Before I was able to get ready for my room, I had to finish up a quick “let’s move things around” in Deja’s room.  This little bench used to sit right in front of her window.  It also used to be bright pink!  After moving it away from the window, it just faded right into the wall. We couldn’t have that! Enter watermelon….

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SPRAY PAINT…and voila, back to pink!  Part of my patio is now also pink…hopefully, the sprinklers will wash it away. This bench is probably much too small for her by now, but I can’t bring myself to get rid of it.  Hmmmmm….take it to school, you say?  Hahaha! Maybe!

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I also put this little guy together today.  That’s another of my little quirks. I like assembling things. These shelves, admittedly, are pretty easy to put together. It’s going to house our cd player and a choice of books on cd for Listen to Reading. 

Tomorrow is THE big sale at one of our local teacher stores, so I actually have set my alarm in order to get up early! Did I really just use the word alarm in a sentence related to me? Isn’t it still July? Grrrrr…after I set it, I saw this little funny and just had to share!

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Have a great day! I’ll be back to share the goodies I find and some freebies we’ll be using to setup The Daily 5 in our classroom.


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