Saturday, March 26, 2016

Plants...A Science Unit - UPDATED!!

Spring is in the air and we are all feeling it!  I love this time of year for so many reasons.  The fact that summer is calling is a major reason, but it isn't the ONLY reason.  I love going to the local nursery and getting my ferns, my Zinnias, Impatiens, Geraniums, Petunias and the list goes on. I think I am the only house in the neighborhood that spends a small fortune on my flowerbed. I am a plant LOVER!!!! Yes, I'd rather have flowers than SHOES!!!! 

And while I'm there, I also thinking about my classroom.  The kids get so excited when they see me bring in dirt, pots, plants, seeds, grasses, a bunch of seeds and more!  I do believe they love this as much as I do.  

MANY of you bought our 42-page
 Plants...A Science Unit 
a few years ago from Teachers Pay Teachers.  We took a look at it this year and saw just how outdated it was.  It desperately needed a make-over!  The borders!  The fonts!  The graphics!  OH MY!
So...if you own it, go to TPT, look through your purchases for this NEWLY REVISED DOWNLOAD. 
We added lots of new activities, vocabulary cards, reorganized the whole thing and added skills and lesson plan help. It is now 91 pages.  If you do not own it, click here.  It has everything you will need to teach the Science standards to your first graders! Let's Get Growing! 

Friday, March 25, 2016

Humpty Dumpty - Book Extension

Who doesn't love Humpty Dumpty?!?!  We do!  Each year we include this classic during our Chicks and Eggs theme.  Some years it's prior to Easter and some years it's after.  There are so many versions out there, including songs and raps that the kids absolutely love! One of our favorite activities is perfect for your hall display.  The students make the wall and make Humpty  (everything you need is in our product below).  At the end, we hand them the poem.  Each word of the poem is in a separate box.  We ask them to cut the poem apart. Then, they "put the poem back together again".  They love it!!
We have also included a booklet that we've used on the occasions that time doesn't allow for the craftivity. It's just as much fun!  

Click here to get the book extension.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

The Easter Egg Farm - Book Extension

Every year we do a big thematic unit on Chicks and Eggs.  Sometimes it's prior to Easter and sometimes it's after Easter.  Either way, we always include The Easter Egg Farm by Mary Jane Auch.  It's about a personable hen named Pauline.  She wasn't laying her share of eggs and the other hens were calling her lazy.  She wasn't lazy.  She just couldn't concentrate due to all the noise in the hen house.  Soon, she finds that she can concentrate and she begins laying some really peculiar eggs.  A lady sees the eggs and offers to buy them all for the annual Easter Egg Hunt.  But, then the unexpected happened!!  
You have to read this book to your kids.  They will love the story as well as the characters and beautiful illustrations.

Click here to get the book extension.

Monday, March 21, 2016


I thought this week would never get here.  I'm not sure who was more or my students. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE my job!  I LOVE my students!  And, I LOVE what I do!  Sometimes you just need a minute.  And in my case...several minutes.  It's been a crazy year.  All of us are busy and all of us have a life outside the walls of the classroom and sometimes we just need a minute to catch up on life.  

Do you ever feel like you are being pulled in a bajillion different directions?  I sure do.  Between my family, extended family, husband, school, friends, and my TPT business partner, I was at my wits end.  I literally thought I was going to explode before the day was over.  And when that bell rang...this was me!  

I felt like yesterday was just a day of crowd control.  (OK, maybe most of the week!)  Now let's add a data meeting with documentation on 20 children due, being handed a book inventory Thursday and due on Friday, and did I mention it was REPORT CARD POSTING WEEK? Oh and did I mention that meetings took my break so getting things done gets a LITTLE stressful?  My goal was to make it through the day, go home and go to bed! We got through it.  I went home at 4, went straight to a bubble bath, and I did ABSOLUTELY NOTHING for two hours. 
And now, I'm good!  

We did have a bright spot in this week. A few years ago my husband started buying a one dollar  scratch off  lottery ticket for each family member. He gives us one for each year. SO, we go to get Mom's 71 scratch off tickets and he bought one for himself. He got a $10 one and it paid $1,000.  YAYYY! So we will be heading  north to Nashville to pick up his winnings then south to the white sandy beaches of the Emerald  Coast. I'm REALLY looking forward to getting a few things done, spending time with my family, and staring at that beautiful ocean and enjoying my "minute"!  
I hope you  enjoy yours, too.

Sand and Sun...HERE I COME!

Friday, March 11, 2016

Farmer Duck - Book Extension

We just read Farmer Duck by Martin Waddel.  It's about a lazy farmer that spends all day in bed, eating chocolate and reading the newspaper. (sounds like a pretty good life, huh)  The farmer has his duck do all the work on the farm.  Duck couldn't take it anymore and broke down.  The other farm animals got together with Duck to hatch a plan.  Your students will love the story as well as the characters.

Click here to get the book extension.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

The Little Red Hen

Today we read the classic  The Little Red Hen.  This classic folktale has been told for many, many years!  Of course we compared several different versions, but then the students got to write their own. They had so much fun and did a great job with it. Books are such good motivators for writing. The really inspire us to put our own thoughts in writing! 

The pages below are out of our 
Little Red Hen Book Extension.  

Would you like this FREEBIE, that you can print and use right now?!?!  Well, here it is!!  ENJOY! 

There are many more engaging activities in our book extension.  Remember, it will work with any version that you have! Check it out here!! 

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Book Extension - Green Shamrocks

We are so in love with the book Green Shamrocks by Eve Bunting. Rabbit is growing green shamrocks in a yellow pot.  He wants to wear them to the St. Patrick's Day parade. He plants, waters, and waits.  Finally they start growing and just in time! On the morning of the parade, he wakes up to find his shamrocks missing.  Will he find them in time for the parade? You'll have to read this book to find out. The kids love listening to the St. Patrick's day tales so much that you can barely put it down before they are fighting over it. We made some fun things to do with this book. Check them out below. 

We created a book extension, full of activities that we use with our students when reading this book. We are sure that your students will fall in love with this story, just like we did. 

Click here to get the extension.

Sunday, March 6, 2016


Here are a few ways to have fun with 17. We love St. Patrick's Day! It's actually an anniversary for one of us, and both of us LOVE to see spring and summer coming since we are both sun addicts. We also love any excuse to add something to our lessons that gets our kids MOTIVATED!!! You know how hard that can be. Soooooo, here you will find  a few things you can do with the number 17.  Your kids will be learning, but they will also be having fun doing it.  Everything in the pack is about the number seventeen.  Perfect for March 17th when those sneaky little leprechauns are wreaking havoc on your classroom. 
Click here to get this packet and get ready for the March 17th!

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Dr. Seuss Week

We had so much fun with Dr. Seuss this week.  Sometimes the hardest part of reading is actually getting your students interested  in what's going on inside the cover of that book. We never have that problem when Dr. Seuss is in the house! They can't just get enough of these books. Maybe it's the silly, zany characters that draw the kids in. Maybe it's the repetitive sounds and simple vocabulary grabs their attention, and boosts their confidence in reading. Maybe it's that they have heard the story so many times, that it brings a level of comfort to them as they read. Maybe it's because the teachers are as excited as they are!! All I know is that they love this week!! I wanted to share some of the highlights of our week at JHES and some of my favorites from friends at other schools.

We absolutely loved the photo booth that our talented reading coach Missy Olinger, AKA READING THING 1 created. (She's the one in the blue hair!)  She is quite possibly the most creative person we've ever known.  She is pictured in the booth with our zany 3rd grade teachers.  There were definitely plenty of photo opportunities this week.  

 Fabulous Firsties!

 Cindy-Lou Who

Kindergarten Cuties

The Lorax look alikes!

Thing 1 and Thing 2 
were all over the school!!
   3rd Grade               First Grade

Just look at this Kindergarten cuteness!

And again as Star-bellied Sneetches!  Too cute!

 3rd grade Star-bellied Snack!
 Truffula Seeds                        Beezlenut Splash
Man...those 3rd graders know how to party!

  See what I mean?  Here they are on HAT DAY!  

It was a great week!  And as my co-workers 's all a  BLURRR. Did we get many pictures in First Grade?  NO!  Between field trips, in-service, and trying to fit everything in, we didn't do too well on pictures!!  Maybe next year!

Friday, March 4, 2016

PARTY TO GO - St. Patrick's Day

Are you all planning fun stuff for St. Patrick's day?  We are not permitted to have more than 3 "parties" during the school year since you can't have fun at school anymore, ha! However, you can close your door (And Lord knows, I hope you have a door!) and have fun with skills attached.  We love themes, and holidays are always on the list, so we could not help but create some fun stuff to get the kids into the spirit of St. Patrick's Day.  We could all stand to be a little more like St. Patrick, I do believe.  Anyway, here is our latest party pack in honor of this fun filled holiday.  We created this St. Patrick's Day Party To Go party package to share with other teachers. It has some of the things we have learned after many years of trying to maintain a little structure with all the excitement . In this packet you will have games to print and play, making YOUR day fun as well. With more and more mom's working now, we did not always have help when we needed it, so we made these packets that can be used year after year with no prep after year one, other than making copies as needed.  Just print and laminate the things you want to use,  and then bag them up for next year when you are finished. It truly makes your life much easier. Check it out below.  
Ready to Party?  Click here!

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Jamie O'Rourke and The Big Potato

You have got to read Jamie O'Rourke and the Big Potato to your students in March.  This old Irish folktale is an all time favorite of mine.  It's illustrated by Tomie dePaola who happens to be a favorite of ours as well!  Jamie O'Rourke is the laziest man in all of Ireland, He is far too lazy to help his wife on their farm. When his wife became ill, he had to do all of her work. Luckily, he found a leprechaun. Instead of gold he gets a seed and grows the biggest potato in the world. 

We have all kinds of fun learning about and with potatoes after reading this book.  We do lots of measuring, writing, and experimenting with potatoes.   We included many of our potato activities in our book extension.  It is available on Teachers Pay Teachers and is full of activities to do with this book.  

Click here to get the extension.

Another great book to read at this time is The Hungry Leprechaun by Mary Calhoun.  Patrick O'Michael O'Callahan finds the hungriest leprechaun in all of Ireland!  The two of them will eat lots of potatoes in this story too!