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Sunday, April 28, 2013

Insta Fun Every Tuesday & Winners

So are you as obsessed with Instagram as I am?

Right now I’m following the Kardashian/Jenner family vacation to Greece via Kris, Kylie, Kendall, Khloe, Brody, Kim, and Kourtney.

Not Rob.  He’s not there {or at least he’s not taking any pictures yet}.

I’m one of the millions to blame for why these people who are famous for no reason are famous.


But I know some people who DESERVE to be famous…hard-working, creative, fun, inspiring teachers!!! 

Rachelle and Natalie from What the Teacher Wants and Michelle from Apples and ABC’s have come up with this awesome idea called #teachertalktuesday

{That’s Teacher Talk Tuesday for you non-hastaggers}

Teacher Talk Tuesday

I’m not surprised.  Have you read Michelle’s posts?  She hashtags everything!

Starting this Tuesday, teachers all over the world will post a picture or two from their classroom with the hashtag #teachertalktuesday

That means every Tuesday you can head to Instagram, search the hashtag, and find all sorts of fun snapshots from teachers you know and love, and some new teachers you haven’t heard of yet.

Can I get an AWE-SOME?

Thank You!

If you want to get a head start on following me, as well as some of your absolute favorite bloggers, head on over to the linky the ladies are hosting {you can link up on either blog by clicking the pic above}.  Lots of fabulous bloggers have already linked up and you can check out their instagram name through their post.

Mine is halleacrossthehall

I don’t have tons of pictures up there yet, but you can bet I will!

If you’re a teacher and you have instagram be sure to link up or use the hashtag #teachertalktuesday every Tuesday!!

So excited for this to take over instagram on Tuesdays!

Before I go, I need to announce the winners of my Wants and Needs Giveaway...

Wants Winners

Congrats Ladies!  Looks for an email soon!


Thursday, April 25, 2013

Wants and Needs Fun!

 We’re all up in our economics portion of our communities curriculum.  This means teaching students all about wants and needs. 

I love this unit for 3 reasons:

1} They inherently get it.
2} This is real life stuff, people.  I know grown adults {me included} that constantly need to weigh what exactly they NEED vs. what they WANT.
3} I made up some fun craftivities to reinforce the concept.  And let’s be honest, we all NEED craftivties in our lives.

After a quick discussion on wants versus needs we whip up these cuties:

{Looks like this kiddo prefers his shelter in the form of a big, brown cave}


We put our needs on our “heart” because we need them to survive.  Students were allowed to choose which needs were most important to them.  I strung all of our needs together and they’re hanging out on our white board.


They look sooo cute I might add!

Wants are like wishes, so we put our wantiest {made-up word} wants on genie bottles!




I didn’t get a chance to hang up our wants yet because we were busy doing a HALLWAY HUNT!!!!!!!!!!!!


Students combed the hallway for images and classified them as wants or needs.  Fun for them.  Instant assessment for me.  I so NEEDED this!

{We classified all healthy foods as needs}

{Need. Duh. Speaking of needs, I definitely needed to refill my ink before printing these cards out.  The original image is actually a healthy green tree, not a dying yellowish-green one}

{One of my students told me a ring was a NEED as in “you NEED it to get married”.  Who was I to argue?}

{Packed up in the binder and ready to go for next year!}

So fun and so easy!  Now you see why I LOVE teaching Wants and Needs!  All of these activities come from my Wants and Needs Mini-Unit.  It’s been a staple of my little shop for awhile, but it recently got a make-over to include the Hallway Hunt.  {It also has 2 printables, one for wants and one for needs}.

{Click the picture to check out the unit on TpT}

I’d love to give a copy or two of this unit away!  If this looks like something you could use in your classroom leave a comment below.  Give me your #1 need and your #1 want!  Don’t forget your email. I can’t wait to read your answers!  I’ll pick a winner by tomorrow night!

Now I ‘m off to dinner… I NEED some sushi ;)


Sunday, April 21, 2013

Five for Someday

So it’s been forever since I linked up for Doodle Bug’s Five for Friday because I just can’t seem to get it together on Fridays these days!  So why not Sunday?  Here we go…

This Five for Friday is dedicated mostly to my student teacher for two reasons:
1} She rocks!  It’s so awesome to see how naturally teaching comes to her.  She is patient, creative, and hard-working.
2}  I hardly get to do any teaching these days.  I’m gradually getting some time back as we get ready for her to bid adieu in May, but the majority of the day is still hers.

1. My student teacher was in charge of our latest bulletin board.  She decided to combine our current lesson on action verbs with spring.  I had the felt watering cans hanging out in my closet for years.  They made the perfect finishing touch! I think it turned out absolutely adorable!


2. Besides lesson planning, teaching, grading, and all that stuff that goes along with student teaching that you have to do without pay, my student teacher also has to do an additional project.  She gets to come up with her own idea, and she went with classroom goal setting.  Each child met with her and discussed a possible goal.  What we thought was pretty amazing was that many of them suggested a goal on their own that we were hoping to guide them towards.  Throughout the week she checked in with them to make sure they were focusing on their goal.  We also wrote them down and taped them to their desks.


3. At the end of the week students who achieved their goal got to play “Minute to Win It”.  Ohmyword, did they eat this up.  I loved her idea of a reward for a few reasons.  One, they had fun whether they won or lost because playing was their prize.  Two, students who did not achieve their goal still got to have fun by watching and cheering on their friends, but definitely became motivated to try harder next week. 

{Students who completed their goal met with our student teacher and got a certificate to take home}

Students had two choices for their game.  They could sort M&Ms based on color or wrap themselves in toilet paper like a mummy.  We played the “blue print” video like the show does to show them how to play.  We even had the minute timer from the show playing on our projector.  It was a lot of fun and INTENSE!!!!!  Every single student who participated completed their challenge within one minute, so we took their picture to add to the Minute to Win It Hall of Fame!


This will be an activity I keep up with one way or another even after our student teacher leaves!

3. Amy Lemons did a post recently on listing poems. Read all about her idea here.  I basically ripped her off borrowed her idea and played a video on clouds and rain and we created some listing poems of our own.

First I explained what a listing poem was using my {FREE} Poetry Posters.

{Click the picture to grab them for free}

Then we watched the video and brainstormed facts and opinions we had about clouds and rain.  I randomly drew names and let students decide whether they wanted to create a cloud or rain listing poem.  The kiddos worked so hard and the end result was absolutely darling :)


{The last line on the bottom raindrop says “Rain is like a tune”…LOVE it!!!!}

4. Ok, finally something I can take FULL credit for!  We started our Earth Day lessons from the my mini-unit “Heal the World”.  We read through the mini interactive books and discussed some of the problems our planet is facing.  Tomorrow, we’ll use the center on our projector and make the craftivity to display in the hallway.

{Click here to check out this unit on TpT}

5. And since I was slightly tardy to this party, number 5 is actually something I did on Saturday!  We went to the Phillies game with our families to celebrate my husband’s uncle’s 60th birthday.  It was a coooooold night for April, but we had a fun time tailgating and watching the game eating.  Because my husband and I met through my brother, our families often spend holidays and birthdays together.  I love how well we all get along and I finally get the chance to feel what a bigger family feels like! Score!

{What you don’t see in this picture: the sweater and sweatshirt I have on under my North Face, 2 scarves, 2 pairs of socks, and Uggs}

That’s about it!  I hope everyone is enjoying their Sunday and has a great week! And thanks Doodle Bugs{as always} for such a fun linky!



Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Write About It Wednesday: Expository Writing

Hello Everyone!  Happy Wednesday!

Kate and I are joining forces again to bring you another Write About It Wednesday.  If you’re new to this series, click “Write About It Wednesday” over there to the right…you can go through all the topics we’ve already written about.  There’s some good stuff there!!

WWednesday Graphic

This week’s topic is Expository Writing.  I hope you’ll stick around to read my post, and then head over to read how Kate launches expository writing in her class.

My post today isn’t about launching expository writing, rather it’s about the expository writing we’re working on right now in my class: All About Animal books.

My kiddos started out by doing research at home with this FREEBIE from Lindsey over at “A Year of Many Firsts”.  I stumbled across this sheet on TpT, but all of Lindsey’s things are awesome!!  Make sure you check them out!  {Like my favorite, here}.

Once we’ve done our research {I provide time in class for any of my cuties who don’t have computer access or parent support}, we’re ready to start our expository writings on our animal.

This may be overkill, but I have my kiddos do their writing in paragraph form before they make their books.  I want them to see that expository writing takes on many forms.

Students receive their All About Books after they write their paragraph form writing.  They use their writing to complete their books.  The books have a page for table of contents, a labeled picture, and different titles pages.  Oh, and of course an About the Author page!




We’re in the thick of these books right now, so I don’t have any completed books to show you, but I’m sure you get the idea.  I have been collecting all finished pages from my kiddos and holding on to them.  Once they’re finished with all sections of their book, we’ll do The Table of Contents together.  Then they will use a standard checklist in their writing folder to edit and revise their books.


We will keep these books in our Non-Fiction Animals book bin for a few weeks before I add them to their portfolios.

I’ve uploaded the All About Book template, which you can grab at TpT.  If you use it be sure to leave some positive feedback.  I love reading each and every comment!!

{Click the picture to grab them from TpT}

And just like we always do, Kate and I are inviting you to link up with any expository writing post you have on your blog.  It doesn’t have to be a new post, as long as it’s related to expository writing we’d love to read it!!!  Just be sure to follow the guidelines below.

*be a follower of both of our blogs.
*use the provided button {just save the image above and link it back here, or provide a link in the picture caption}.
*link to a post related to today’s topic.
*make sure you link to the specific post and not just your blog.

What expository writing topics do you do with your class?

Don’t forget to check out Kate’s post!


Sunday, April 14, 2013

It’s Poetry Month! Free Posters!

Hello there!  Happy Sunday!

Relaxing, Heavenly
Coffee, Brunch, Nap
Goes by too quickly

As you were probably made aware by my incredibly inspiring cinquain, we’re right smack dab in the middle of Poetry Month!  My students are only slightly aware, as I haven’t really touched on it except for randomly saying it out loud to them from time to time.

“It’s Poetry Month!”

“Oh hey everyone!  Good Morning!  Happy Poetry Month!”

“Did someone say Poetry Month?  Oh yes, I did.”

Starting tomorrow I actually plan on backing up my random comments by introducing a few types of poetry and reading or showing some examples to my very confused kiddos. 


I plan on projecting these posters I made on my projector/white board each day to give them a visual definition of each type of poetry.  Of course these posters would also look adorable printed and laminated as well!  After we go over the type of poetry being discussed, we’ll either make our own, or read a few examples.



They’re yours if you’d like to use them!  Please keep in mind that I haven’t listed all the types of poetry, and I probably won’t be adding anymore {at least this year!}.  I made posters only for the types of poetry I plan on covering with my guys and gals.

I’ll be back this week to share some of the ways we’ll be celebrating poetry in our classroom.  And Kate and I have a post planned for Write About It Wednesday this week too!  Our topic this Wednesday will be Expository Writing, so make sure you stay tuned or plan to link-up!

Enjoy what’s left of your weekend, friends!


Sunday, April 7, 2013

Heal the…errrr…Planet?

Hello Friends!  Happy Sunday!  {Or not…we go back to school tomorrow, so this is actually Sad Sunday for me}

Anyways…I’m going to try to make a long story short.

I made an Earth Day Unit.  A mini-one if you will…and I was so excited to call it “Heal the World”

{Do you hear Michael Jackson yet??… “make it a better place…”}

But then I did some extensive research a Google search, and I figured out that phrase is pretty much trademarked, and that the Jackson Estate will come after me.  And…Ain’t Nobody Got Money Time for That!

So I present to you…

Heal the Planet!

{Click the picture to grab it from TpT}

This unit is short and sweet because Earth Day is only one day.

Scratch that, Earth Day is every day…but if this holiday comes and goes as fast as every other holiday did this year, I have about thismuch time to teach it.  Way back when I made my Christmas Around the World Interactive Readers I discovered that they’re the perfect thing to hold my kiddos’ attention.  They read important information, and then they respond to it right away.  They have fun, and I sneak in a little learning!

Take a look-see:


Those are just a few of the pages.  Your students will either draw a picture based on what they read, or fill our information in a chart/table.

I also included a center:


Students read the scenario on each card, and sort them onto the correct mat: “Healing the Planet” or “Harming the Planet”.  Simple but effective.  Do you sense a theme?

Oh, and of course there’s a craftivity…because…why not?


I’m giving one of these away on my Facebook page.  So head on over and enter!  It ends tonight!

Click here to check it out on TpT!

Enjoy the rest of your Sad/Happy Sunday!


Thursday, April 4, 2013

Super Quick Spring Giveaway!!

I’m on Spring Break and basking in every glorious moment! 

I may be taking the word break a little too literally as I am boycotting laundry and grocery shopping this week :)

As much as I’m loving this week of pure bliss, I am feeling slightly guilty about not having anything even semi-educational to post.  Since I don’t want this guilty conscience to ruin what’s left of my break I thought I’d throw a Super-Quick, Super-Fab, Super-Easy to Enter Giveaway!

spring giveaway
{Graphics/Fonts: Hello Literacy, Miss Tiina, The Moffatt Girls}

The winner gets to pick any 2 spring-related items from my TpT store.  Read all about your choices here or check them out here!  Just enter using the Rafflecopter below.  Hurry!  This little giveaway ends at midnight tonight!

Ok, I’m off to take my third nap of the day!  I kid, it’s only my second.

Have a great day friends!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, April 1, 2013

Currently {April}

Yes.  I am just as baffled as you are as to how it’s already April!!! 

Time flies I tell ya.

On that note let’s get down to business:

april currently

Listening & Loving: Spring Break and HGTV is a deadly combination.  I watch an episode of Property Brothers and suddenly I’m getting in my car and heading to Home Depot!

Thinking: I have paper and a pen next to me, ready to make a Spring Break To-Do List.  Lots to get done!

Wanting:  It’s Spring Break, so I really wish it would feel like Spring out there!  
Tomorrow’s high is only 48.  Wah. Wahhhhh.  This winter needs to be over already!

Needing: The hubby and I are looking to buy a house by the end of the summer.  We’re currently in his grandmother’s home, and we need to decide whether to buy the house we’re in or a completely different one.  I go back and forth  I need a sign!

Advice: I LOVE this month’s “bonus box”, because with so many awesome bloggers linking up, there is tons of free and VALUABLE advice floating around out there right now! My advice applies more to Teachers Pay Teachers than blogging, but really it fits both.

If you are contemplating becoming a seller on TpT, or are a new seller and you want to be successful, I cannot stress QUALITY over quantity enough.  I want to make sure that I am super proud of every single product I post in my store.  I can only do that if I put my all into every single unit I make.  Sometimes that means walking away from it for hours, days, or weeks at a time. If I’m not in the mood to create a resource, I don’t.

And I ALWAYS have someone edit my work.  In my case, it’s usually my mom who is also the editor of her church newsletter.  Thanks Mom!!!*

There you have it!  Expert Advice :)

Enjoy your day everyone!


*That brings me to my second piece of advice.  Most {if not all} of my favorite bloggers and sellers on TpT have someone, or multiple someones, that edit their products before they post them.  That being said, some mistakes still make their way to the final copy.  If you find an error in a product that you purchase, the seller will happily fix it for you.  Just make sure you ask NICELY and understand that mistakes do happen.  Even to the best of us.