Thursday, July 28, 2011


I have used Homworkopoly in my room for several years now and continue to love it more and more each year!  If you are not aware of homeworkopoly click here.  I use homeworkopoly for our Nightly Reading.  For each week that my students have their Reading Logs completed, they each get to roll the dice every Friday and take a turn on the game board.  If you do a simple search you will also find variations of the game board.  Many teachers are now making game boards to match their theme.  I've also seen some teachers making theirs to use with a Smartboard, Mimio, etc.  If you haven't ever used Homeworkopoly I highly recommend it!  It's an excellent way to motivate students to complete their Nightly Reading or other homework.

Unit 3: 2 Dear Juno

Here are the Reading Street Activities for Dear Juno that my team will use.

Dear Juno Trifold

Dear Juno Tic Tac Toe

Dear Juno Dominoes

Dear Juno Comprehension Questions

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Classroom Voice Levels

I recently got this banner from Vistaprint that Whole Brain Teaching created for Voice Levels and Risa from ProTeacher made into a chart for the classroom  One of my teamies wanted a copy, so I thought it would be easier to share with everyone.  I plan on getting velcro dots and placing a laminated star to show my class the expected noise level for certain activities.
Credit goes to Risa a member from and Whole Brain Teaching.  I changed the wording for 0.  It originally said Quiet of the Tomb.  Zero Noise Level works better for my 2nd graders.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Unit 3: 1 Pearl and Wagner

Here are the activities that my team will use for Reading Street: Pearl and Wagner.

Pearl and Wagner Trifolds

Pearl and Wagner Tic Tac Toe

Pearl and Wagner Dominoes

Pearl and Wagner Comprehension Questions

Bucket Fillers

This is the third year that I plan on implementing Bucket Fillers into my classroom.  This is a positive reinforcement that really brings out the good deeds that individuals do on a daily basis.  I had been using hanging cubbies like these that go on a pocket chart stand.  This year I have decided to make a poster in hopes of it taking up less space.

I will laminate the poster and put it on a bulletin board.  Once I have my class list, I will write their names with a dry erase marker below each pocket.  To make the poster, I got library pockets from our school and stuck those on.  Then I reduced the buckets so that 4 would fit on one page.  I glued those on and there you have it!

I also made business cards from Vistprint for the kids to fill out for each time someone wants to fill another's bucket.  I plan on putting the cards in a small bucket near the poster. They can also write on the back of the card if need be.

If you want more information on Bucket Fillers, this website has great information.  Amazon also has a list of many books that are great for both kids and adults in understanding the concept of being a Bucket Filler verses a Bucket Dipper.  Click here for Bucket Filler books.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Study Jams

Did you know that Scholastic has short math and science videos for students!  We have breakfast in the classroom at our school, and these videos would be perfect to show during that time.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Mrs. Bainbridge's Giveaway

I have been a stalker to Mrs. Baibridge's Class Website for quite some time.  She is one excellent teacher that has WONDERFUL ideas!  I recently learned that she also has a blog that is just a cool as her website!  She is having a giveaway for some of her Flippy Books.  You can enter her giveaway by clicking on her button below.

Mrs. Bainbridge's Class

Writing Units of Study

Our school uses Nancy Fetzer Writing Connections as our writing program.  It is a really great program for organizing your writing.  Nancy even came to our district several times, and I was lucky to have her actually come into my classroom and perform a lesson with my 2nd graders a few years back.

While this program is great, I am always on the lookout for topics to have my students write about.  I was recently looking around on ProTeacher and came across a couple of links for excellent Units of Study for Writing.  The first one is Ms. Gurian's 2nd Grade Class Website.  Not only does she have some excellent ideas for writing, she has a whole bunch of other great resources including Data Binder Forms!  Click here for Ms. Gurian's Website.  The other site that had a ton of writing resources was Mrs. Meacham's Classroom Snapshots.  You can check out her resources here.

I also have this book, No More "I'm Done!" on my wishlist.  If school weren't starting on August 15th here, I would have this on my Kindle and reading it now!  If you have read this book, please share your thoughts on it!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Incentives for your students

Last year I remember coming across a list of free or nearly free incentives for your students compiled by Risa on Proteacher.  I thought it had so many great ideas and wanted to pass it along.

Rewards List at No Cost

Cootie Catcher Giveaway

A Day in the Life of a 2nd Grader is having a giveaway  for  Cootie Catcher Resource Books and Classroom Incentives!  She has 5 ways to enter.  Check out her awesome blog to enter!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Learn Boost - Online Grading

Do you use an online grading program?  Our school has used Teacherease in the past.  Due to budget cuts, I'm not sure if we will have it this year or not.  I just learned of Learn Boost!  From their website they say "LearnBoost is 100% free. You get all the wonderful features in all of our modules: gradebook, attendance, lesson plan, calendar, and more. You have everything to gain by signing up because LearnBoost is free and amazing."  It looks worth checking into.  Click on the picture if you are interested.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


Have you heard of Dropbox?  I have been using this since last spring and am so glad that I found it!  With Dropbox I no longer need a thumbdrive or have to worry about did I save that file on my home computer or the one at school.  Dropbox is a free Web-based file hosting service operated by Dropbox, Inc. that uses cloud computing to enable users to store and share files and folders with others across the Internet using file synchronization.  If you're interesting in using Dropbox, click on the picture below.

Monday, July 18, 2011

More Bargains

Here are some more goodies I found for my classroom recently!

I got paper money for my Math Stations at Dollar General for $1.  I got the sharpies free at Target after using their online coupon.

I bought these games at Savers!  I paid $7 for them both!  

I found this lunch bag at Big Lots for a little over $5 when they were having their 20% sale on Sunday.

Also for those of you that LOVE Target, you have got to follow this site!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

2nd Day in 2nd Grade

This is a great back to school activity that my team uses.  We downloaded it from Joanne Griffin.


My 3rd grade friends also use Joanne Griffin's 3rd Day in 3rd Grade


Have you heard of Pinterest?  After seeing so many of the bloggers that I follow talk about Pinterest, I finally decided to check it out.  I must say WOW!  This is an awesome way to organize all of the great ideas I come across while on the internet. If you ever see something and think "Hey I want to do that!"  All you have to do is "Pin It!"  It will show up on your boards that you can organize any way you want.  In order to get started on Pinterest, you have to have an invite.  If you are interested send me your email address and I will send out an invite for you to get started.  It's really very simple and you will love this site!!!

This is what my Pinterest page looks like.  After I click on a board, it  takes me to the original sites where all of the really cool ideas were first posted.

Follow Me on Pinterest

Friday, July 15, 2011

Ladybug's Teacher Files

You have got to check out Ladybug's Teacher Files and her Resources page too!  She has such awesome ideas!  She has reached 1000 followers and is having a giveaway!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Office Max

Office Max has some really good deals advertised this week!  PLUS they will price match competitor ads!!  Unfortunately my local Staples wouldn't allow teachers to get more than the limit of 2 for their quarter sale.  I took their ad to Office Max and was able to get a class set of Poly Folders for a quarter each!

Office Max's Weekly Ad 

Teacher Appreciation Day at Office Max

Friday, July 8, 2011

Download Youtube Videos

I recently learned that you can download Youtube videos using Zamzar.  It's really pretty simple.  They will send you an email once the file has been converted and you can download it and save the file to your computer.  I'm excited to use this since our school has breakfast in the classroom and this is an excellent time to fit in these educational short videos.

I just discovered that apparently you can also download the files with RealPlayer too!  It's really awesome and has many different options.  You can download to an iPod, iPad, or save it to the computer and view in RealPlayer.  

Make an MP3 from Youtube

Did you know that you can make an MP3 File of songs on You Tube!

Here's how to do it:
**You need to have RealPlayer installed on your computer.  It's quick & easy... just go to**
1. When your video is playing on YouTube there should be a little RealPlayer tab at the top right of your video.
2. Click the RealPlayer button that says "Download this Video".
3. A little RealPlayer window should then pop up showing the video being downloaded.
4. Once the file is downloaded, hover over the file with your mouse.  Click "Convert".
5. Select "MP3 Audio Only" and then click the green "Start" button.
6. That's it!!

Some searches to look for songs that might be of interest include:
Schoolhouse Rock
Greg & Steve
School House
Harry Kindergarten
Mark D. Pencil

Rhonda Crigger
Jack Hartmann
Leap Frog

I Won!

After being out of town for a few days, I was excited to get home and check my mail!  I had recently won a blog giveaway from Lory Evans.  Her newest book, One-Page Math Games by Scholastic was waiting for me!

If you haven't come across Lory's Page or her TPT store you have got to check it out!  Lory is truly talented and has inspired me!  Lory you ROCK!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Shopping for Supplies!

I have been scoping out sales here and there and have already found several things for my classroom!
At Target in the Dollar Spot (in Albuq.) I found Desk Plates, Name Tags, Book Marks, Number Cards, A Clock for my Math Stations, and Pocket Charts.  I haven't checked out our local Target since it's smaller than most and gets picked over quickly! 

At Dollar General I found Foam Sheets for Math Work Mats, 3 packages of Dominoes for Math Stations, 2 Trays for a place value game that I saw on Teachertipster, Dot Stickers for differentiating Math Stations, Subtraction & Addition Flash Cards, Dice, and 2 Decks of Cards for Math Stations!

At Wal-Mart I found this Hangman game with the Toddler Puzzles on clearance for $5.00!
I found this class pack on Ebay for around $50.  It retails for around $150!  I will use these in my Math Stations too!

2011-2012 Calendar

I know that there are a lot of cute calendars out there that everyone creates, but I have found this simple one from Excel great!  I use it each month to write homework, birthday's, and special events that we have for the month in our classroom.  The kids each get a copy at the beginning of every month.  I also post the current month on my class website.  It has come in very handy for everyone!

Excel Calendar in Google Docs

Grandfather Tang's Story

I just came across this book that Just Love Teaching posted.  I plan to use this with my class this year!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Pattern Block Station has these really great patterns that I am going to use in my math stations.  Check it out!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Go Animate

I just saw a post by Primary Graffiti about making videos with Go Animate.  It's looks pretty simple and fun for students.  It looks like I might try to make one.

Monday, July 4, 2011

School Supplies at Staples

I just saw on slick deals that Staples is starting back to school supply sales this Sunday!

They have some pretty good deals coming up!

Staples Ad

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Music for Management

After a year of successfully implementing the clip chart into my classroom, I have discovered that Rick Morris also has a whole section on Music for Management.  He has some excellent ideas for transitions and routines.  He has many theme songs available for free downloads.  It looks like I am going to have to play with this and create a playlist for my daily routines.  You can check out his website here!