A Common Core Teacher's Toolbox!

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Currently MARCH!!

March already?! Seriously, Seriously people, where does the time go?! March makes me smile. March means spring is in the air (hopefully), if not at least Spring Break is in the air.  That also means summer is just around the corner.  Since March makes me so happy, I decided to take time to link up for Farley's Currently!

Listening: So I have to admit watching MTV's Real World has always been somewhat of a guilty pleasure of mine. I've even got my husband watching it with me. We are finally catching up on some of our DVR shows, so that is what is on now.

Loving: Spring break is one week away! I'm super excited! We have lots of fun things planned, and I am ready for a break. Did I mention I'm EXCITED?!

Thinking: My mind is on Little Mermaid/all things Under the Sea themed overload. My baby girl will be 3 next month *cue the tears!! I never truly understood "they grow up fast" until I blinked and my baby is now basically a mini adult. So much of an adult in fact, she choose her own birthday party theme. So Little Mermaid it is, and I have gone a little Pinterest crazy looking for ideas for her big 3rd birthday.

Wanting:  Spring to come and stay. It made a mini appearance, and as quickly as it appeared, it has gone away.  I'm ready for warmer weather.

Needing: Well I need to do a lot of things, but on the top of that list is to get caught up on planning. After spring break, we will have 6 weeks until our big standardized test. I want to have my review skills all planned out before I leave for spring break. Strangely enough, I already have units planned for after the "test", so if I can get my basic review skills planned out I'll be all planned up for they year. That at least will take a little bit of stress off of from all the Standardized Testing pressure.

I also need to find some new, easy, and tasty South Beach diet recipes. I'd also like to get ahead on my menu planning.

????????  The answer is New Orleans!!!!

Happy March Everyone!!! 

Monday, February 17, 2014

Calling All National Board Certifited Teachers!!

     Are there any NBCTs out there who would like to share their expertise with the world? If you are interested in becoming a part of the NBCT Share collaborative blog please send an email to nbctshare@gmail.com for all the details.  Share your awesomeness with the teaching blogging world!!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Love is in the Air....Valentine's Day Freebies!

   It's almost Valentine's Day! I know I can't wait to spend it with my two Valentines. I love holiday themed activities almost as much as my kiddos do.  So to wish you a Happy Valentine's Day, I have two fun Valentine themed freebies for you. Hopefully this will give you a little extra time with your Valentine this week!

First, I have Jar of Hearts Valentine's Day Crafitivity. I orginally created it to use for creating arrays, as well as reviewing fractions. However, there are many ways I'm sure you could use it for other math purposes as well. You can get your Jar of Hearts Craftivity here.


Want to take some times to review types of sentences?  You can download my Sweet Sentences Sort here. There is a color and black and white version for you!  You could also use this to starting point to having students create their own conversation hearts! If you find these activities helpful and enjoyable for your students, please leave me feedback and let me know.

If you'd like a versatile writing craftivity, I also have my Valentine's Love Bug Writing Craftivity. Sorry, this one is not free. However, it is discounted to $ 2.50 in honor of Valentine's Day. It includes multiple different writing templates that can be adapted for any grade level. It also makes a cute Valentine's Day gift or bulletin board display. You can check it out here:


I hope you enjoy these freebies, and have a very sweet  Valentine's Day Week!!     

Friday, February 7, 2014

Friday Favorites- Weather Investigation

    Well  I promised Friday Favorites post from my students, and I've already fallen behind. Things have been super busy both in and outside of school, that I haven't had time to get this post up. My kiddos are so excited about blogging, that I get asked daily when it will be their turn to do it. So here is our latest Friday Favorites from Curious C.

   Hi. I chose my name to be Curious C, because my favorite thing about 3rd grade is getting to research what I am curious about. This week I have been researching floods. Do you want to know something cool I learned? More people die in floods that any other type of extreme weather.  I thought that was a pretty cool fact. That is why our research projects are my favorite thing in 3rd grade.

    I know that Curious C is not the only one in my class who would say that researching is one of their favorite things to do in my class. I teach in an IB school, so most of our teaching is based on science and social studies topics. For each unit, the students complete a research project.  At the beginning of the year, we spent almost the first whole 9 weeks doing a research project about animals step by step together. Now, the students are expert researchers, and they absolutely love it. I create an investigation journal to go with each unit, and the students work in small groups to become experts about their topic. They then come up with their own way teach the class as the culminating activity.

Below is a picture of our inquiry station. This is where I keep library books and research materials for each unit. Students place questions, ideas, and things they are wondering about on post it notes on the "Inquire Here" bulletin board. 

 Our current unit deals with weather, so students have been focusing their research on extreme weather. Below is a sample of what their investigation journals look like:
Curious C and I hope you enjoyed this edition of Friday Favorites from our classroom. We promise to bring more fun things from our room very, very soon! 


Friday, January 17, 2014

Friday Favorites!

    I mentioned several times I wanted to get back to letting my students do some blogging about whats going on in our classroom. We decided as a class we would begin "Friday Favorites".  Students will blog about their favorite things from our classroom. Without further adieu let me introduce our first Friday Favorites Student Blogger:

    Hi. I'm Creative  K from Mrs. M's class! Let me tell you about my favorite things about 3rd grade so far.  I love it when we get to work on things in groups. I used to hate group work in 2nd grade, but now I LOVE IT!  Mrs. M taught me that it is an important life lesson to learn how to work with groups, even when everyone doesn't get along or agree.   
     My favorite from this week was the gallon man activity.  I loved it. It was simple but fun. The reason it was fun was that we had to be creative and thinkers. We named our gallon man, King Gallon.  Check him out: 
 I hope you enjoyed my favorites! : )    : D

    We do hope you enjoyed hearing from Creative K!  The students have been so excited about finally getting to blog.  Creative K even informed me when we were editing her Friday Favorites,that certain words must be left in "all caps", and she made sure to know what they little smiley face symbols were for.  We were finishing up some measurement this week, when I remembered last year I had purchased an adorable measurement unit from Hope King!  That unit is where our adorable Football Gallon men came from! Check back next Friday when Curious C will be sharing his favorites!

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Happy New Year!! 2014 already?!

       Every time I blog, I am always in a perpetual state of shock at how quickly time passes!  Happy 2014! Resolutions, resolutions, resolutions! Do you have them? I used to be a New Year's resolutions kind of girl, but the last couple of years I've strayed away from it.  I create goals throughout the whole year I try to work towards. (Same difference maybe). With that said, it is almost impossible to not begin a new year without some goals in mind.  I'm  continuing with some goals I had from last year, as well as working towards some new things. One of which will be bringing a little life to my blog. I'm actually going to do this by letting my students do some blogging for me!I've done this in the past, and my students loved it.  So look forward to some classroom updates from my sweet kiddos in the near future!

Also, if  you are looking for something to do with your kiddos this week to celebrate the new year. I have an awesome freebie for you in my TpT store. It's a New Year's Writing Craftivity! Just print and go and save yourself some time planning for the new year! You can pick up this freebie here.
 You can sort of see the finished product from last year on the cabinets below!  I simply printed the craftivity and let the kids color it themselves. This year I might try to have them use construction paper to create their New Year's craftivity.  I'll post pictures once we finish this week!
I totally geek out when it comes to motivational/inspirational quotes!  So let me share a few great ones I found for the new year!

Here's to a wonderful start 2014!! Happy New Year!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Currently August Edition......

Seriously August is here already?! Back to School time is so crazy, that I'm about 10 days late to the Currently August party!

Currently I am:

*Listening: It's Saturday morning, and I'm the only one awake early! We purchased a noise maker for our daughter when she was born. We now can't sleep without listening to the ocean waves, ourselves. So I sit here, when I should be sleeping in listening. It's actually quite relaxing.

*Loving: All the encouraging people in my life. Sadly, I am very much a pessimist at heart. I have been working extremely hard to be much more positive about things the last couple of years. I have already been letting myself get overly stressed about some things this school year. I'm so blessed to have people close to me who surround me with love and encouragement. It's kind of hard to stay so negative when you surround yourself with positive! I especially am thankful for my sweet husband. The good Lord knew what he was doing when he sent him to me. We are so alike in so many ways, but polar opposite at how we take on stress.  He lets me vent, then always takes that vent and turns it into something positive. He is my biggest cheerleader and encourager! What would I do without him?!

*Thinking:  I have been extremely stressed about how I am going to be an effective teacher this  year. Most years I get a similar mix of a kids ( A couple high/on grade level, the majority being a little below grade level, and a few who are extremely low, and maybe one or two special situations).  This year that mix is out the window.  The majority of what I normally have in my classroom is virtually non existent this year, and I have quite a few "special situations". That all leads back to the stress and why I'm really loving all those encouraging people right now who are making me look at this in a positive light. So I'm spending some serious reflection time this weekend thinking of how I can best meet the needs of my class this year.

*Wanting-  You would think after having 2 months off, Back to School time wouldn't be so exhausting. However, it seems to me that is what makes it even more exhausting. I really could use a little energy boost, because exhausted is an understatement. (Yet, I'm up early today, go figure!)

*Needing-  I have a few projects left on my summer to do list I really want to finish. One being finishing our bedroom "makeover". I also have decided to completely revamp my class website. I just need to sit down and  do it.

*Back to School Must Haves:
1. Planner/Calendar- I have to start the new school year off with a cute new calendar. It makes me feel much more organized to start the year with all of the important dates already put in the calender. Plus I go ahead and list breaks/vacations/special events, so I can smile when I look at all the good stuff I have coming up.
2. Supplies- I am a teacher, so of course I'm kind of addicted to new school supplies. I especially love a good pen set!
3. Summer Vacation Pictures- I have to start my year off with a few pictures  hanging around to remind me of my wonderful summer!

I hope that you all have a wonderful Back To School Start! May it be much less stressful than mine has been. If it is stressful, surround yourself with positive, encouraging people. It works wonders for the body and soul! Here's to a wonderful school year for everyone! : )