Sunday, June 30, 2013

Let's Get Acquainted Linky Party

I am addicted to Linky Parties!  Is this my 4th Linky Party of the night?! Hop on over to Flying into First Grade to be a part of the Let's Get Acquainted Linky Party.

For this linky, I get to write about three subjects, choosing them in Tic-Tac-Toe fashion.

Share about your first year of teaching  My first year of teaching was short exciting. I worked for 15 days before going on maternity leave. I came back to work after Christmas vacation.  Luckily, one of my friends from college was my sub and she was with my class from the first day of school!  She volunteered her time for 15 days to spend time in the classroom and learn my procedures and let the students get to know her.  She did a great job and was in constant communication with me. It was really interesting to come back after Christmas to see how much the students grew academically!  The year FLEW by once I got back. Fortunately, our baby is a good baby and our three year old is a good girl, so I was able to balance work and home life.

My Favorite School Memory as a Kid I was a kid who LOVED school. When I wasn't in school, I was playing school with my two younger sisters in the basement.  It is hard to think of a single, favorite school memory.  In fourth grade we had pen pals with fourth graders at another school in the district. My teacher and her daughter's teacher paired up the students to be pen pals. We wrote back and forth to our pen pal, practicing writing friendly letters. We got to meet our pen pals at the end of the year. My pen pal, Casha, and I have been friends ever since!  She's currently in grad school, so I only see her a few times a year, but making a lifelong best friend through a school assignment is definitely a favorite school memory!

                                                        Lauren, Me, Kelly, and Casha

Books I'm Reading I love to read. The year I got a Kindle, I read more than 50 books!  I haven't read much lately, with work and having two small children. Summer vacation has given me the chance to read more. I just read The Black Box by Michael Connelly. 
I am a little ashamed to say that currently I'm reading Fifty Shades of Grey. I always jump on the book bandwagon late.  I got into Harry Potter right before the last movie came out. I got into Twilight after the movie had already come out.  I read Hunger Games just because my husband and I were going to watch it at the theater. At least this time I'm reading a book before it has been made into a movie!

Bloglovin' Blog Hop Linky

I think I love Bloglovin'! Daily I receive multiple emails about new followers on Bloglovin', which is more than I can say about followers on Google.  And, the iPad and iPhone app makes it so easy to read the blogs that I follow. I was happy link up with Tori's Teacher Tips  for the Blog Hop Linky.

 Follow me on Bloglovin'. Click here or on the button on the right.

July Currently

I'm excited to link up with Oh' Boy 4th Grade for the July Currently.  Eeek! I can't believe it is July already. School starts next month!

Five For Friday... Sunday Edition

Here it is- my five things. :)

1. Flowers: While I really dislike gardening, I love flowers! The lily is growing in my "garden." (My garden is pretty much an overgrown space next to my deck.  Maybe next year it will be better....) And the hydrangea is growing at a park downtown.

 2. I've mentioned it before that I'm training for the Chicago Marathon. I ran my longest distance yet yesterday--- 14 miles. I am using the Galloway Method of training, which uses a combination of running and walking. I was excited that even after running 14 miles, I could wear heels out on date night with my husband last night. (We saw The Heat. It was HILARIOUS!)

 3. I love my little Olivia! She is almost 10 months old. The time sure is flying! She is so quick; most of my pictures this week have been a little blurry, but thanks to Instagram, the blurred look works.

4.  Isabella, my almost 3 1/2 year old, has a thing for the Nightmare Before Christmas!  After watching it the other day, she requested that she could dress up like Sally.  I used gel eyeliner to draw the stitches. Now everyday she wants to look like Sally. (Note that she is Princess Sally. While she has a love for Tim Burton, she is a princess at heart.)

5.Cake pops with Aunt Gabrielle. My sister, Gabrielle, came over on Friday to make cake pops with Isabella. Isabella had fun decorating the cake pops with melted chocolate and sprinkles.

Hop on over to Doodle Bugs Teaching to link up!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Sweet Summer Giveaway!

Kinder Doodles is hosting a great summer giveaway! Hop on over to Kinder Doodles for your chance to win cute cupcake products from my TPT store and  Kinder Doodles' TPT store, as well as your choice of products from Christin of Shifting Teacher K-2 and Sara of Polka Dot Kinders.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Monday Made It

I'm so glad I found this linky party with 4th Grade Frolics. Thank you to my mom for introducing me to it! 

I want to make a bulletin board in my classroom that can be easily switched out, so I decided to go with ribbon strung across the board and clothes pins to quickly hang student work, anchor charts, etc without the holes of staples or thumbtacks.  But how could I make it more exciting than plain wooden clothespins? GLITTER!

Isabella, my three year old, and I love to use glitter!  I painted Elmer's Glue on each clothespin and Isabella dipped them in glitter.

We ended up glitterizing one and a half packages of clothespins. (That's 75 sparkly clothespins!)

I let them dry overnight before sealing the glitter with Mod Podge. I chose the glossy finish.

 The Mod Podge dried clear and now we have some beautiful sparkly clothespins to showcase Isabella and Olivia's work at home as well as lots of sparkly clothespins for my bulletin board at school!

Our door display of the girls' projects.  We have a stainless steel refrigerator, so we can't hang anything with magnets on it. Isabella is proud of her work and loves to show it off to Mimi and Papa when they visit. I had to remove the bottom ribbon because 9 month old Olivia is on the move and kept pulling the artwork down! 

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Five for Friday

My phone is full of pictures, so it's hard to pick just five for this week's Five for Friday Linky Party with Doodle Bugs Teaching.

1. My girls love splashing in the kiddie pool! Carlos the Chihuahua joined in the fun, too!  Our aboveground pool is open but still green, so until it is clean, we're sticking to this little pool. 

2. Green smoothie: kale, broccoli, carrots, banana, almond milk, and cinnamon. The only thing that's missing is chia seeds. (They're on my grocery list!) 

3. My three year old loves visiting the local frozen yogurt shop. I actually deviated from my usual cotton candy and pink cupcake flavor to try peach. It was delicious! 

4. Who doesn't love a beautiful sunset? I love the pink in the sky and how it reflects on the water!

5. My mom, sister, and best friend took a painting class last night. We had so much fun. I'm excited to hang my artwork in my house. I'm really happy with how it turned out. 

Friday, June 14, 2013

Five for Friday

I'm linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching  for a Five for Friday Linky Party. I love finding new blogs to follow through linkies!

 1. Have I mentioned I LOVE summer!? It was a beautiful day today... sunny skies, warm (upper 70's) and a light breeze. Perfect for a day outside!

 2. I took my daughters to a local park today. Tower Park is perfect for my three year old!  She can do most everything by herself this summer. There are swings, too!  My girlies like to swing side by side for hours!

3. We found this itty bitty toad today. Isabella, my three year old, was scared of it and didn't like Mimi (my mom and fellow kindergarten teacher) holding it! It was adorable and I had to snap a picture of it!
 4. We saw a magic show today while visiting my grandma. She lives in the memory care wing of assisted living home. It was heartwarming to see how the residents were so focused and animated with the magic tricks.
5. One week away from school and I'm already planning for the upcoming year!  My students will use this literacy station to match capital and lowercase letters. My school system teaches D'Nealian manuscript, so I start from the first day of school introducing D'Nealian writing. 

Cupcake Alphabet Match

One week into summer vacation and I'm already planning for back to school! As a child, I always loved getting ready to go back to school. I remember my mom telling us we weren't allowed to even buy new school supplies until after the fair was over! (What can I say? I'm a planner! I love organization and planning!)

I am excited to introduce new literacy stations in my classroom in August. I recently was awarded a grant to have a Listen to Reading station. I am so excited to be the proud owner of an iPod touch, KIDZ GEAR headphones, a Rockstar splitter to have up to 5 students listen to the iPod, and lots of books and CDs from Scholastic.

I want to get my new class excited about literacy, so I made this Cupcake Alphabet Match literacy center to match my cupcake-themed classroom.  The students will match capital and lowercase letters to make a cupcake. It's available in my TPT store!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Follow Me on Bloglovin!

<a href="">Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

Thank you to my mom, Mrs. Phillips of Kinder Doodles, for posting a link to super easy steps to move to Bloglovin. It took me only a few minutes. (And that was with holding wiggly 9 month old baby!)

Make the switch!  And follow me on Bloglovin!

My little girls playing in the pool. I love summer vacation; it is wonderful to spend all day with these smiling princesses!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Duck on a Bike Class Play

Today was our school's awards program. The day started out with parents, siblings, and grandparents in our classroom to watch the class perform our rendition of David Shannon's Duck on a Bike.

The class worked so hard practicing for weeks! I was so proud of their performance!  Everyone did a great job!  I am so glad I recorded our final dress rehearsal yesterday because my classroom was PACKED today! I was surprised with the number of family members in the audience! Click here to watch our play.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Class Gift and Some Furry Visitors

 Today my class surprised me with a cute gift!  They eat lunch in the classroom on Mondays and the mom volunteer had been working with them each Monday while I was out of the classroom to create this cute bag!
Each student has a quote!

(Sorry- I can't seem to make this picture rotate!)

After the excitement of my present, we had some cute furry visitors!  The class earns "cupcakes" on two ten-frames for good behavior. Once they earn 20 cupcakes, they get a prize.  Usually they vote, but this time I picked for them. My sister Emily has five ferrets and was very generous to bring two to visit on her day off. (She is a nurse and an author! Visit her blog here.)

 Petting Romeo the ferret.
 Elvis was a good sport in his old age, letting everyone pet him!

 They really enjoyed meeting Romeo and Elvis. This was the first time some of the kids had ever seen ferrets. After Emily left we had a little time to create thank you notes.

 Emily and the illustrator.
 Another photo I can't rotate.... I am very impressed with the number of sentences! 
I love the ferret illustrations!

 Only three more days of school! And three more days of excitement!  Watching plays, performing plays, a pizza party, awards program, and field day!