Friday, April 29, 2011


In honor of Teacher Appreciation next week I am putting together some gifts for my son's special area teachers.  His gym, music, spanish, art, and library teachers need some love too!  One gift that is easy to make and inexpensive is a lottery ticket gift.  You will need a lottery ticket for each teacher you wish to make it for.

This is a 3 inch punch that I bought at Michael's.  I think it was like 25 bucks, so make sure you bring a 40% coupon!

 I found super cute apple scrap book paper to make circle punches for the background.

I then added Trevor is "Lucky" to have you as a teacher!  Thank you for all you do!
I found these adorable tiny clothes pins and attached the saying to the lottery ticket.  You can also put the ticket in a bag and attach the saying on the outside.  The bag I used is a blue lunch bag and cut off the top to make the bag shorter.

Click  HERE for the saying.  Enjoy!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Look How We've Bloomed!

This is a cute display that I put in the hallway for the past couple years in May.  I send home a letter requesting each child bring in a baby picture and a picture of them now.  I have the kiddos decorate a cheap white paper plate with petals any color they wish by tracing their hands and cutting them out.    We have an Ellison die cut machine at school, so I cut out yellow circles for the center.  When they are finished I usually help them cut and glue their picture of them now in the center. Next, they glue a green sentence strip on the back to use for the stem.  On the bottom they trace their shoe for their "seed" on brown paper, cut it out, and glue it to the bottom of the sentence strip.  I write their names on the sentence strip and they always come out so adorable.  You can put brown bulletin paper covering the entire bottom so the seeds look like they are under ground.  Happy Spring!!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Teacher Appreciation Gift

I was searching the web for some creative Teacher Appreciation gifts for my son's teacher and came across The Tip Junkie.  I LOVE her blog.  I found this adorable crayon craft and feel in love with it.  I was super excited because I went to Michael's and found a shadow box for $3.99!!  Wahooo!!  The project was so took me 10 minutes!  The materials I used for this project was:  an 8 x 8 shadow box, crayons, hot glue gun, and a piece of card stock to print the teacher's name on and her initial.  I used green because that is her favorite color.  I can't wait to have my play room, so I can do this for my boys!!  Teacher Appreciation is May 2nd-May 6th, so make sure you have something special for your kiddos' teachers:)

Click  HERE for the template:)
Thank you to Lisa from Rainy Tuesday Mornings!!!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Close your eyes and make a wish!

This is one of my favorites!  It comes out super cute and it is pretty easy to make.  After reading the book Wish: Wishing Traditions Around the World we close our eyes and think about all the things we wish.  My students then brainstorm their wishes and then they get to type a paragraph about their wishes.
 Yes, they are dandelions! I used white yarn and wrapped the yarn around my hands several times pulled it off and then tied a knot around it. I then cut the loops. I hot glued the flowers on black paper.  The next time I do this I would like to take pictures of the kids blowing and making a wish.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

April Showers Bring May Flowers

I love putting this out at my writing center during April.  My old umbrella and prompts were getting old looking, so I just made new ones.  This is a simple way to have fun with writing during the month of April.  The umbrella is from the Dollar Tree and I created the raindrops using text boxes on top of raindrop clipart.  Your students will love to pick raindrops from the umbrella and begin writing.  Click HERE to print the raindrops.  Print on cardstock and laminate, so they last longer.

You will need fishing string, an umbrella, and the raindrops.

The best part is this folds right up and it's easy to store.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Carrot craft

I usually have this craft at a center during my Spring party.  I use orange foam for the carrot and green foam for the leaves.  I attach the poem onto scrapbook paper and attach it with ribbon.  They always come out adorable.  My sister put an adorable twist on hers.  Handprints are used for the leaves!  How cute is that?!


The poem says:

Hang this special carrot
On the knob of your front door
So that the Easter Bunny
Will be absolutely sure
There's a special boy or girl
In their room who's fast asleep
who is most deserving of
Lots of Easter Treats!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Easter Basket Cupcakes!

I made these super cute cupcakes yesterday for my son's class.  They are so easy and come out adorable.  All you need are cupcakes iced in green icing.  I rolled the edges in green coconut and pushed colored Twizzlers into the edges.  Lastly, put jellybeans in the center.  Enjoy!! 

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Organize ME!!!

I was out and about shopping at one of my favorite stores, Home Goods and found this wonderful organizer.  I originally wanted it for my three kiddos to organize their school work and such.  It works out perfect because there are 3 compartments and I have three kids.  I now am thinking of going back again for another.  It was $39.99 and I LOVE it!  It is so well made and it already has been super awesome. 

What is your favorite thing to keep you organized?  How can this be used in the classroom...I need some ideas!!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Easter Show and Tell

Tonight my Kindergartener had such cute homework.  His teacher gave each child a plastic egg.  They had to fill the egg with an item and then describe it giving three clues.  Then, on Friday when everyone has their eggs filled they will read their clues and the class will take their guess.  Too stinkin' cute!  I love it, so I made it a bit more cutsie.  Click here for the family page explaining the assignment!  Enjoy!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Poetry Month-Fractions of Me!

One of my co-workers had this fabulous math book with ideas and it had this in it.  I love doing this project in April because of poetry month and during our fraction unit! My students make a rectangle in their math journals and draw lines so they end up with 6 boxes. They have to decide what makes them up. Since it's cut into sixths here is an example...1/6 of me is a daughter, 1/6 of me is a soccer player, etc. They fill all boxes as a prewriting activity.  Then I have a final copy paper that they fill in and write sentences abot what makes them a whole.   Next,  they create arms (sentence strip), hands from the ellison machine, they create pants/skirt, and cut out a head. They always come out so cute!!!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


This is one of my all time favorite projects!  My second grade team last year had our students make a Robots out of Recycled materials for Earth Day.  It was super cute and the kiddos had so much fun.  I got this idea from my niece when she was in kindergarten when they were studying the letter "r".  We then had our school come vote for their favorite robot.  The winner from each class won a Terracycle item in honor of Earth Day.  We had the kids vote because our school budget was also that day.  The kids went home with a sticker son their shirts that said, "I voted today, Did you?"  It was a reminder for parents to vote!  This was a fantastic display in the second grade hallway and it even made it into the newspaper! Click HERE for the parent letter.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

What can we do with all of these eggs?

 Well the boys and I got out our Easter items and we had tons of plastic eggs.  I was thinking we should make something out of them, so that's just what we did.  I made a grammar center for my classroom to review all of the skills they have learned so far.  Since I am on maternity leave I will have to wait to use it next year.  My boys wanted to get in on the action, so I made a game for both boys.  My 5 year old wanted me to write addition facts and he had to match them up to their sums.  Then my little guy had to match up the correct letter with each other.  Here are some pics of how they came out!
Do you have any ideas what to do with plastic eggs?  This is super easy and CHEAP!  You can get 24 eggs at the Dollar Tree and you can also find an Easter basket there.  Click HERE here to get the Recording Sheet!!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Calling all Authors!

I love doing Author Studies with my students and some of my favorites are Jan Brett, Steven Kellogg, and Eric Carle!  That's why I was so excited yesterday when I found a fabulous book at The Christmas Tree Shop.  The best part about it was the price...$2.99.  Can you believe that?!  It will be a great introduction to many author studies.  This is how each author in the book is presented.

Check out a classbook cover for Kevin Henkes on TPT.  I use this for the cover of a packet while I am doing the author study on him and then I laminate one copy and make a classbook of my students' writing during the study.   I also made one for Marc Brown.  Click here for an Eric Carle Worksheet that you can use to compare different books that are read during your study.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Is your school GREEN?

About three years ago I discovered an awesome organization called Terracycle.  It is an organization that uploads items that would normally go to the landfill and makes them into new products.  The concept is wonderful.  It helps eliminate waste as well as earn cash for my school.  It's a win, win situation!  To get started visit their website and sign up for brigades that fit your school's needs.  My school is currently collecting juice pouches, chip bags, Elmer's glue, gum wrappers, tape dispensers, and writing instuments.  We have bins in our lobby for the non-food items and a container in our lunch room that I won through  I will be blogging about that soon!  Last year during April in honor of Earth Day we gave away Terracycle items through a raffle to our student body.  You can find their products at Target, Wal-Mart, and their website!  They are super cute and well made.  Our biggest brigade that we collect is juice pouches and to date we have collected over 32,000 pouches.  Even though it's only 2 cents per item it really does add up and help the environment!  Check it out!  Is anyone else's school involved with Terracycle?  If so, does your school do anything neat with it?
Watch these YouTube Videos!!

Our school has been so awesome, we have gotten 2 awards from Terracycle and the frame is made out of old Capri Sun pouches!!  A shout out to Gill Franklin who collects, organizes, and ships all of the juice pouches, chip wrappers, and cookie wrappers!! You rock Gill!! 

Friday, April 1, 2011

Bump Board

Bumping someone in my classroom is an ultimate favorite for my second graders.  I reserved a small section of my bulletin board for our "Bump Board".  In the beginning of the year I tell my students that I am looking for four super star papers.  Work that is neat, their best work, and of course has their name on it can be in the running to go on our Bump Board.  Once I choose 4 papers I call each child up to hang their papers.  They are so proud as their classmates clap and their masterpieces get to hang proud!!  Then, whenever I come across a paper, test, writing assignment, etc. that is fabulous I call them up and they get to bump someone off.  Before implementing this we talk about not getting upset when their paper is bumped off and to be a good sport.  I have been using this for the past 3 years in my room and have never had a negative issue with it.  It is super easy to implement and it doesn't cost anything to make it. 
Here is a picture of mine...