Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Winner, Winner Chicken Dinner

A few things I learned from this giveaway:

1. Y’all love February because that means it’s just a little bit closer to Spring…goodbye jackets & uggs, hello flip flops!!!! Girls after my own heart. I couldn’t be MORE excited!!!

2. Some of y’all get a week off in February?!?! FOR REAL?!?! And one of y’all said it’s because of the Rodeo?! I think I know where we’re moving…SOON.

3. Y’all LOVE 3-day weekends as much as I do.

4. Y’all love teaching about all these fun little *holidays*…Groundhog Day, Valentine’s Day, President’s Day, Dental Health…just as much as I do, too!! Hopefully the winners of this little giveaway will find a few things to make planning in February a little easier!

Without further ado….


I will contact y’all via the email y’all left in your comment!! Thanks for playing, you guys!!!

For those of y’all that didn’t win, you can head on over to my TpT shop for 20% off of everything in my store through Friday!!

Have a great week!!!!!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Love, Splat. Black History Month. And a Giveaway

Hey sweet friends! Happy Saturday! Okay, so maybe notsomuch on the *happy* for me. The screen on my laptop decided to die, so I spent the morning taking her to get fixed only to learn that she needs to be sent off to be repaired! Shoo! I'm taking this as God's way of telling me to take a break from the computer, so my blogging and commenting will be very minimal the next few weeks. In the meantime, I'm trying to figure out a way to upload several new units I've been working on...just a few little goodies for February.

My newest little mini unit...Love, Splat...was just added to my TpT shop in the nick of time! HA! Here's a little preview:

You can grab it for $5 HERE.

Are y'all looking for the *perfect* activities to implement for Black History Month?? Well, you're in luck!! LaNesha Tabb, from First Grade Awesomeness, has an amazing unit for primary teachers! She started posting some of the activities on her blog for you to check out.

I have it and I LOVE IT!!! It's awesome!!! You can pick it up HERE.

So, this is the first time I've logged onto my actual blog in a while. I noticed that I reached 4,000 followers so I thought this would be a great time for a BIG giveaway!

I'll be giving away EVERYTHING in my store to 4 lucky winners :) I'll randomly select the winners via Random.org and I'll announce them on Tuesday. Just leave a comment telling me what you love most about February. Only one comment per person, all additional comments will be deleted. Please remember to include your email so that I can contact you if you win!

Have a GREAT weekend!!!!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Praise Jesus! And a Little More Alliteration




In other news, I just wanna put him in my pocket in take him home with me! PRESH!

Sarah left me a comment the other day directing me to this absolutely DARLING activity she did for alliteration.

We didn’t have the book Ten in a Sled, but I loved the idea of using verbs with alliteration. So…while I’m waiting for my copy of Ten in a Sled, I decided to do a little whole group shared writing activity with the class. We made two word alliteration sentences using nouns & verbs. This was a great way to assess my kids’ understanding of action words…a few of them were still having a hard time with it! When one kiddo couldn’t figure out the perfect verb to go with his/her name, he/she got to call on a friend for help. This was such a FUN activity!!!!


Then they got to follow up with a little writing activity for their desk task {literacy station} that day.

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Since that little activity got such rave reviews, I followed it up with something similar today. Instead of alliterations using nouns & verbs, we used nouns & adjectives! This was A LOT harder!!! It took lots of little minds working together to come up with words to describe themselves…especially words that had to start with the same initial sound as their first names!!!


We followed up with another little writing activity for their desk task today, too.

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I collected all of their writing to laminate and then turn into class books for our library.

These shared writing activities were also great for reinforcing punctuation and stretching out sounds to make words….we’re working SO hard on that!!!!

Nothing too exciting, but my kids had such a blast with these!! And to those of you that think my anchor charts are always fun and frivolous, as you can see, they’re clearly NOT. As long as it gets the job done, sometimes it just doesn’t matter how they look!!!!

I’ve got a glass of cabernet & Top Chef calling…y’all have a great rest of the week!!!

Monday, January 23, 2012

A Little Alliteration

One of the objectives we’re working on this week {and last week} is alliteration. There are SO many great books to read to introduce and cover this topic. Some of our favorites are…


Shel Silverstein poems are great for alliteration, too! My kids loved Picture Puzzle Piece, Noise Day, and Spoiled Brat :) the most!! The beg me to read them on the daily :)

We talked a lot about alliteration last week and ended the week with a little alliterative writing after reading If You Were Alliteration. We brainstormed a giant list of animals and then I had each of my firsties choose an animal to write about in an alliterative sentence. The sentence could be silly or serious. OF course, all of the writing I got back was definitely silly! The kids had to write a sentence and then illustrate it. They loved this activity!!!


I absolutely LOVED Julie Lee’s “All About Me Alliteration” activity, so I borrowed that idea and gave it a little twist. Instead of having the kids write an alliterative sentence about themselves, I had them write one about a friend! They thought this was the neatest idea! They couldn’t wait to say silly things about their buddies. I definitely chose partners so that the kids weren’t fighting over each other. They did such an AWESOME job!!!

alliterationpeople1alliterationpeople2 alliterationpeople3

I created a little anchor chart today to hang up and display all of their alliterative animal sentences. I haven’t started on that yet, but hopefully that will be up by the end of the week! In the meantime, it’s sitting on the easel for reference.


As we were packing up to leave this afternoon, one of my sweeties said she couldn’t wait to do more alliteration activities. “We get to do some more tomorrow, right Mrs. Carroll?!?!!?” Ummmm…sure! Have y’all seen any great ideas or do you do anything in your class you want to share?! I’d love to add a few new things to the mix!

ps: thank you for this! you can head on over and vote for your favorite blog ‘til January 26th!


Sunday, January 22, 2012

My Current Obsessions {Totally Unrelated to Teaching}

After a week of cramming for that dang ESL certification, I’m back and ready to blogstalk. I missed catching up on everything y’all are doing in your classrooms!! Now I’ve got lots to read while I’m waiting for my test results {gulp}. In the meantime, I needed something totally unrelated to teaching to occupy my time. So I thought I’d share with y’all my current favorite obsessions.

1. My growing collection of M.A.C. eyeshadow.


I’m completely obsessed. Mr. Spouse says I’m going through a mid-life crisis. Not sure about that, but I LOVE me some M.A.C!!!! Their eyeshadows are the best…they stay on without getting icky and they last forever, too!!!

2. This perfume.


Alfred Tsung, Shi. A total throwback to my college days. Found it at Marshall’s for $15 and had to bring her home. It reminds me of Friday nights out on the town with my girls and scarfing down Quizno’s sandwiches and watching Lifetime on Saturdays.

3. Stripes.


Holy heck. I own a lot of stripes, I guess. Dangit. My mom is sick of this obsession of mine. Whenever we get together and go shopping, she has to pry me away from buying more. I love stripes.

4. This song.


Who’d Have Known”

I know this is nothing new, definitely made an appearance on my ipod circa 2009, but it’s definitely been repeat the last few weeks. Maybe because T-Pain made it famous again?!?! Love her voice. And all her music. But this one is my current favorite because I like to go “old school” every now and then. Also on constant replay?!?! Justin Bieber’s “Never Say Never” {my 4-year-old’s favorite song} and Zac Brown Band’s “Knee Deep” {my 2-year-old’s favorite song}. Wow. Never thought I’d say that in a sentence.

5. This album:


Oh how I love me some Amos Lee. I started listening to him about 7{ish} years ago and man, that boy can sing. If you like folk{ish}/acoustic-y type music, you’d LOVE Amos. Soooo good. Especially “Colors” and “Arms of a Woman” from his first album. Chills. Right now.

6. This FREE App…


Red Stamp…LOVE. Found out about this from a sweet friend and now I’m obsessed. I just posted a ton of Red Stamp creations on my family blog. I absolutely LOVE this app!!!!

7. This show…

modern familyphil

This show gets me through the week. I love it. Cracks me right up. And I have a serious not-so-secret crush on Phil Dunphy. He absolutely makes the show! SO funny!

8. These candles…


Circle E Candles. I burn these ALL.THE.TIME. I promise these are the best candles you’ll ever burn. I haven’t burned anything different since I started using these about 8 years ago! My current favorite scent is Apple Streudel. Birds of Paradise is pretty dang good, too.

9. Caramel Cappuccino from La Duni Dulce.


Do y’all have one of these where you are?? I LOVE La Duni. The food is to die for. Dulce is almost better, especially if you have a hankering for sweets and coffee. Their desserts are insanely amazing and the caramel cappuccino is like heaven in a cup. SO good.

10. This Lip Balm

lip balm

Love it. Absolutely ADORE. I can’t go a day without it. Perhaps I’m a little addicted.

11. These cleaning supplies


Mrs. Meyer’s cleaning products!!!! Ohmiword. I don’t like cleaning {who does?!?!}, but these cleaning products make me happy. I actually want to clean as often as I can because this smells SO dang good. I have the lavender scent and ohmiword…AMAZING. You’ve gotta try these out!! Sweet Janell {who doesn’t have a blog, but absolutely should} gifted these to me {THANK YOU!!!!} and it was love at first spray. I swear I don’t want to use anything else anymore!!!!

12. This oatmeal.


Starbuck’s Perfect Oatmeal. It comes with a little pack of nuts, dried fruit, and 50 calories worth of brown sugar. I don’t like the nuts or the fruit, so I just eat mine with the sugar. I LOVE IT!!!! I ate it for breakfast every day last week and I’m pretty sure that’s how I’ll start my day tomorrow, too. SO yum!

Another obsession?! My bed. We haven’t spent much time together this past week, but we’re getting reacquainted starting now!!!! As my dear friend, Abby, would say, “PTL!!!!!”

Have a great week sweet friends!!!!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Inferencing with NO David! and a Silent E Freebie

To kick off inferencing, we started out using Abby’s Snow Day Case Files. Do y’all have this yet??


If you’re teaching inferencing, you SERIOUSLY need this!!!! Let me just tell you that my kids were all over it. I set up my case files and the kids went to town being little “inference investigators”. Wow. I mean, they really got it!!!!!


To follow up, we pulled out the book, NO David! My kids LOVE this one!!! Our whole team is using this book to reinforce inferencing skills. First up, we made a little “No David!” inferencing brainstorm chart. We talked about using our schema and the clues in the text to make really good inferences. As we looked at each page of the story, I called on a few kids to give me an inference about the picture and then the clue/schema that helped them make the inference. We broke up this activity into parts because even though this isn’t a long story word wise, it’s pretty long when you’re making inferences!!!


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After we brainstormed our inferences, I introduced our little inferencing anchor chart. We talked about words to use {sentence starters} when we’re making/writing about inferences. We went over schema again and they IMMEDIATELY knew what evidence was {thanks to Abby’s Snow Day Case Files!!!!}



I had the kids fill out this little inferencing sheet where they had to describe a picture from the story, write their inference about the picture, and then write about a clue/schema that helped them make their inference. LOVE!!!!



We’ve got lots more inferencing activities planned, but so far we’re off to a great start!

We’ve also been reviewing and working with silent e. I don’t want to jinx myself, but I think they’re *finally* getting it!!! Now we’re working hard to incorporate the silent e into our everyday spelling. Here’s a little activity we did a couple of weeks ago. My kids LOVED it and it really helped them to understand the job of silent e!!!

Click to download Silent E Freebie

I’ll be spending the next few nights cramming for my ESL certification test on Friday. EEEEK!!! Nervous!! I’m NOT a test taker by a LONG shot. However, I think God is helping me through this one!!! I’ll be praying big time!! Have y’all taken it?!?! I heard it’s REALLY hard!!! Nothing like waiting ‘til the last minute to study! To prep for a long night of studying, I’ll be watching Top Chef and cooking THIS for dinner. That should help me make it through!!! HA!!!


Thursday, January 12, 2012

Snowflakes Falling & Contraction Surgery

I love Mr. Spouse. Like, BIG love him. Even when he’s being a turd, I adore the man. However, I think it’s crazy how helpless men are when they’re sick. Completely helpless. I’ve been less than sympathetic toward him and his recent bout of sickness this week. Not sure what’s wrong with him, but I’m sure hoping I don’t get it. I started feeling a little guilty about my lack of nurturing, so I made him some soup tonight. And it was pretty dang good ifidosaysomyself.

I’ve been escaping the germs in my house for even better germs at school :) We’ve been incorporating cutesy little snowmen into our learning this week, but we’ve also been knee deep in some big stuff…contractions, inferencing, place value, and problem solving just to name a few.

We started out the week introducing my little “Contraction Crocodile” {from my Crazy for Contractions unit} to kick off our little contraction activities.


Then we did a little surgery :) I found this darling idea on Pinterest from Mrs. D. Lue Pann at Buzzing About Second Grade…contraction surgery!!! LOVE!!! The kids got masks & surgical gloves and then went to town with their scalpels {scissors} cutting apart words and then bandaging new words {contractions} together. The kids were SO pumped! I put them in small ‘surgical teams’ and each doctor got to perform surgery while the other team members assisted in surgery if the doc needed help. I swear they’ve never been more engaged. I took all the bandaged words and then made a little anchor chart{ish} to remind the kids what we learned. And seriously…they’ve been knockin’ my socks off with their use & recognition of contractions! I’m so dang excited!

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contractionsurgery4 contractionsurgery5

We do word problems in our calendar notebooks almost everyday, but we got a little crazy today and added a little craftivity into the mix. Of course, this was Pinterest inspired as well. I loved the idea of this little art activity from Joanna Davis at Our Art Lately. Precious, right!?


Well, we pretty much did the same thing, but I threw in a little problem solving and patterning to tie it all together. The kids had to solve the word problem, create a number sentence, and then write a complete sentence answering the question. Once I checked to make sure everything was correct, the kids got to work creating their snowmen. I had them make a pattern on the scarves to tie in last week’s objectives and then they added thumbprint snowflakes to match the sum of the word problem.





TGIF sweet friends!!! This will be the best Friday the 13th yet :)

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