Sunday, November 16, 2014

Let's Talk About Turkeys Nonfiction Study + Freebie!

Gobble Gobble!!
Thanksgiving is coming near! I don't know about you, but I am in desperate need of a few extra days of R & R, turkey, and some retail therapy!
Until then, we are waddling into our nonfiction study on TURKEYS!!!
Not only are the holidays fun for the obvious reasons, but I just love to bring nonfiction studies into this time of year. My students are so excited and engaged to learn about nonfiction topics, such as pumpkins and turkeys.
In our Let's Talk About  Turkeys nonfiction unit, we begin by discussing important vocabulary that pertains to turkeys, as well as study nonfiction books and pictures about turkeys.

 We use our close reading posters to learn about each aspect of turkeys, including general information, habitat, offspring, features, the history of how turkeys evolve, differences and similarities between turkeys and chickens, and some fun trivia facts about turkeys (such as...did you know that turkeys have heart attacks?- My students get a kick out of that one!).
Throughout our studies, we use several graphic organizers to display our learning, such as circle, tree, bubble, and double bubble thinking maps. Then we take those organizers and transform our thoughts into writing.


The best part about this is the fact keeper booklet that they create as a keepsake to take home after this unit is complete. In their Fact Keeper is a vocabulary section, label a turkey, and several pages that they have to complete the sentences with the correct vocabulary for each topic learned about turkeys.
To change things up a little, we also create a turkeys fact craftivity booklet with turkey facts that we have learned! :) Who doesn't like craftivities right?!? We proudly display these on our writing bulletin board in the hallway.
Here is a bubble map freebie that goes along perfectly for any nonfiction turkey study!
All of this is included in my Let's Talk About Turkeys nonfiction pack. Click on the picture below to learn more! Happy learning!

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Holidays Around the Blog!

Happy November 1st friends!,
I hope your littles had fun trick or treating last night! I'm still in recovery mode, but it was so heartwarming to see everyone dressed up so cute and excited.
Now the real fun begins...did you know there's only 53 days until Christmas?!?!
Yikes I know, but there's no better time to begin to collect your ideas. Today I'm joining Amy from Learning Lessons With Mrs. Labrasciano for her Holidays Around the Blog linky.
One of the highlights of the holiday season for my students is celebrating Holidays Around the World. I love to expose my students to different cultures and how they celebrate. It's so engaging for them to learn about.
Last year, I thought, "Why not place our Holidays Around the World lessons in a keepsake file?" So the Holidays Around the World Interactive Student Notebook was born!
Throughout the entire month of December, we learn about a different country each day to make it through 15 different countries/customs by Winter Break.
We use several books to supplement our unit. One is a Holidays Around the World book from Reading A-Z.
One of my favorites to read while we are studying Hanukkah is "Latkes and Applesauce"!
Here are a few other recommendations:

We begin by receiving our boarding pass to place in our ISN's:
Then we glue our passport in our ISN's so we can glue a stamp on it as we go along learning about each tradition.
Each day, we read about each country's traditions and glue it on the left side of the notebook. My students interact with it by underlining the pertinent information indicated at the bottom of each page.
Then my students create a foldable/craft for the right side of their notebook that relates to the country that we are studying. Here is an example for Italy:
Here are some various pictures throughout of our Holidays Around the World Interactive Student Notebook unit:
 If this is something that may interest you, click on the picture above to check it out!

Come and see all of the other wonderful ideas to kick off your Christmas season!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Pumpkin Exploration F-U-N + Freebie!!

Hi there friends!!,
Friday officially marks the beginning of the most exciting time of the year. I call it the "triple whammy"- Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas! I absolutely LOVE this time of year. Not only is it exciting for me, but it is a time for my students to get excited, and I feel like I can get back to the roots of what teaching is about: the enthusiasm and meaningful learning.
Every year, we do a Pumpkin Circuit in my classroom. These are pumpkin exploration centers that integrate multiple subjects for meaningful learning! I usually set up 5 centers that we rotate every 10-15 minutes around. *Side note: This is a good day to ask for volunteers. :)
My students love this day! They are completely engaged and making connections. Their favorite is the pumpkin eruption!

We also spend some time reading one of my favorite non fiction pumpkin books, "Pumpkin Pumpkin," by Jeanne Titherington. It is about the pumpkin life cycle and is perfect for the primary age.
Following reading the book, we make a pumpkin life cycle craftivity:

All of this is included in my Pumpkin Circuit Pumpkin Day centers pack:
In this center, I have included 10 different pumpkin exploration centers:
*Making pumpkin butter
*Pumpkin Eruption
*Pumpkin Product Taste Testing
*Pumpkin Senses
*Pumpkin Be Gone (testing candy pumpkin in various liquids)
*Pumpkin Exploration Math & Science
*Pumpkin Life Cycle Craftivity
*Making Pumpkin Play Doh
*Pumpkin Oobleck
*Popping Pumpkins
Click on either picture to take a look!
I am also giving one away on my FB page. Come on over & say hi!
Here is a freebie as a way to say thanks for following along. This is my Pumpkin Sense page. Students will use their 5 senses to explore a pumpkin. Click on the picture below to download.
Until the next time friends!!,

Friday, October 10, 2014

Halloween Bash Blog Hop!!

Welcome to all of my old friends & new!!
I hope you are enjoying our Halloween Bash blog hop so far! I'm the next stop in your hop!!!

Get ready... I have some more goodies for you. :)
Halloween is one of my favorite holidays for so many reasons! Halloween represents the true beginning of fall to me (especially since I live in Florida where the leaves do not change colors). Having a sweet tooth, I L-O-V-E some good candy! Speaking of candy, my favorite Halloween recipe is Candy Corn Bark!!

Click HERE to download the recipe!!
Even though I loved Halloween as a kid (although my mom dressed me up in the same witch costume for 5 years in a row... :) ), I enjoy Halloween so much more as an adult. I get to watch my 2 beautiful daughters be excited about it, and we live in the most amazing neighborhood for Halloween!!! There are awesome Halloween decorations all over, haunted houses, and hundreds upon hundreds of kids trick or treat in our neighborhood. It is everything that I hoped my girls would be able to experience! It is truly a blast to partake in!
In celebration of our Halloween Bash, I'd like to share my Cut It, Sort It, Glue It Fall Math freebie! It has some addition and number sense activities for your students to review. Click on the picture below to download it!


Also don't forget to enter in the prize packs for some amazing fall/Halloween prizes for all grade levels!! It is too good to pass up!!
K - 2 Giveaway Pack a Rafflecopter giveaway
2-5 Giveaway Pack a Rafflecopter giveaway
Secondary Giveaway Pack a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you for joining The Teaching 2 Step Halloween Hop. I hope you enjoyed my post, did you know you can follow me on Facebook and Pinterest Hop through more Halloween Bash bloggers below:

An InLinkz Link-up 

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Johnny Appleseed Traveling Party + Freebie

Hello my sweet blogger friends,
Ahhh... fall is coming near. The weather is becoming milder (well, in Florida at this time of year, anything in the 80s is milder), Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte is back.... It is definitely my favorite time of the year, which brings me to one of my many favorite days of the school year: My Johnny Appleseed Traveling Party!

On Apple Day, I don't like to do the traditional activities. Many years ago, I started doing the Johnny Appleseed Traveling Party with my students on Johnny Appleseed's birthday.
I usually set up 5 apple stations. With each station, I have a sign with a state that Johnny Appleseed either resided or lived in.
For this pack, I added 10 activities for differentiated purposes. Some of the activities include:
-Which Apple Do You Like the Best (taste testing different apples and graphing)
-Apple-licious Taste Testing (sample different apple products)
-Apple Oxidation (use different materials to determine whether the apple will turn brown or not)
 -Apple Exploration (use math and science skills to describe your apple)
-Apple Parts (label parts of an apple)
Additional activities included in the pack are:
 -Crockpot Apple Crisp (with a how-to writing to accompany it)
-Apple Eruption (use different ingredients to make an apple volcano)
-Apple Play Doh (students will make apple play doh and complete a sequencing sheet on how they made it)
-Apple Life Cycle Craftivity
-Johnny Appleseed Pot Hat (students will make a pot shaped hat to wear on their head like Johnny Appleseed)

It really helps to have parent volunteers help run the stations; however, I have had years where parental involvement is non-existent. You may choose to do these activities with your students throughout the week or pick some activities that are simple if you don't have any volunteers.

To begin this week, I send home a parent letter asking for donations of certain apple products and for each student to donate an apple of any color. I also ask for volunteers in advance. I have always been very fortunate with having most of my students bring in an apple!
On the day of, I slice the apples 20 minutes before we begin our stations. Our stations last anywhere from 10-15 mins a piece. It runs like a well-oiled machine!
Here are some pictures of our stations in action:


Here is a preview of everything that's included:

And to show my appreciation of my fans, here is a freebie from the pack. This is a "Parts of An Apple Labeling Sheet". I hope you enjoy using it with your students! Click on the picture to download!!
I hope this post has given you some ideas! Have a fun-filled apple week!! :)

Monday, August 4, 2014

Monday Made It + TPT sale time!!

Happy Monday Friends,
I'm getting ready to venture into my classroom tomorrow! EEEK!! This year I am moving to a new school, so my classroom is starting from scratch. It is such an exciting, yet nerve wracking time!
Today I'm linking up with Tara from 4th Grade Frolics for Monday Made It!!
First I made some decorative items for my classroom. I made this "READ" decoration that I am going to hang using Command hooks. I found the zebra plates at Hobby Lobby and the self adhesive letters at Walmart!!
Next up, I made a sign for my classroom door! I bought a canvas at Hobby Lobby. I found a zebra stencil at Hobby Lobby also and used a black paint pen to do the stenciling. Then, I made a name tag from pink cardstock and letter stickers, added some gems, and VOILA! 
I also made my helper chart for my rock star classroom!!! I couldn't find a helper chart that I loved. Then the idea popped into my head one day. Why not take individual pictures of my students and make them into "backstage passes". Then I will hang them under each job.

This is an example of a badge using my daughter Summer!
 This helper chart is EDITABLE & now in my TPT store!! Click on the cover page above to take you there!
I also created & ordered this banner from Vistaprint. Since our school is doing a rock star theme, I am going to hang this on the board for Meet the Teacher. Folks, I am IN LOVE with this sign!!!
Lastly, I have been feverishly working on my Rockin' Through My Alphabet pack! I am going to use this as a fun review for my firsties the first few weeks of school. This pack includes a poster for each letter of the alphabet, a QR code that links to a song for each letter, a list of songs with links if you do not choose to use QR codes, and a workbook to reinforce students' knowledge on their letters and sounds.

Also I'm sure you've heard about the BIG back to school TPT sale!!!
All my products in my TPT store are 20% off! With promo code BTS14 you get an extra 8% off. Click on the picture below to go to my store & snatch some of these goodies:

 See you next time friends!