Thursday, March 19, 2015


March 20th marks the first day of spring!  Even though there is still snow on the ground, my kids and I are anticipating spring like never before.  Our thinking is if we read about spring, write about spring, and talk about spring, it'll come sooner!

We started off with an acrostic poem about spring.  If you've never done one, an acrostic poem uses the letters in a word to begin each line of the poem.  All  of the lines in the poem should relate to the topic.

I always brainstorm spring words to help the kids write their poems and I always love how they come out! 
Since we've been reading some fantastic books about the season, the kids have done a great job coming up with words.

I created these Spring Acrostic Poem Sheets that you can grab here for free! They are available in both portrait style and landscape style for those kids that write a bit more.

I've got some creative kids who love to draw!

Check out some of their poems:

 my Spring Craft and Close Reading for grades 2-3 and create these adorable bunnies. They are No-Prep!

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Going Buggy!

Linking up with Carla from Comprehension Connection for Thematic Thursday!

I think I'm the kind of person that loves and appreciates bugs as long as they stay in a book and outside my house =)
That being said, here are a few cute ideas to connect with the books above. 

After reading In the Tall, Tall Grass and Inch by Inch, we took the ideas of measurement and the parts of an insect (three body segments - head, thorax, and abdomen, six legs, antennae, and wings), and put them together. 

First, kids had to order the grass pieces from smallest to largest. Then, they drew some bugs on another piece of paper, cut them out, and glued them in their tall, tall, grass!

I paired up some non-fiction and fiction books about ladybugs and created some ladybug rocks. I didn't take any pictures of our rocks, but I found these similar ones online (all links are below).  I also love the paper craft so I included it as well... definitely a less messy idea!

This is a beautifully written book that my kids loved and it contains wonderful, descriptive language. 
It's about a boy on a summer evening who is so excited and mesmerized by catching these magical creatures in a jar.   However, he soon realizes that by keeping the fireflies locked away in a jar, they begin to lose their mysterious glow and will die. He makes the wise decision to let them go. 

 If I saw this adorable craft earlier, I would have done it. Hope you get a chance to do the craft!

I thought this tied in great with the bug theme!

I created Buggy Math to teach and reinforce the concept of place value, even and odd numbers, greater than/less than, 10 more/less and 1 more/less through printables and easy NO PREP dice games. Worksheets are differentiated and some have a choose your own number option.  

You can grab Buggy Math here!

                  Here is one of the partner dice games.

Here we are learning how to representing numbers in different ways.

You can also grab 3 FREE hundreds chart for your students here! There is also a black and white version too!

Found these fun freebies too!

Buggy Math has been updated! Download the updates for free if you purchased it!

St. Patrick's Day Coloring Sheets FREEBIES!

No matter how old they are, kids love to color!  It's great for their fine motor skills and it's relaxing for others.

Linking Up with Catia from Always a Teacher & Forever a Mom for Freebies Friday! Check out some more freebies here!

I hope you enjoy these FREE St. Patrick's Day coloring sheets I made - I even drew that shamrocks - woo hoo!
If you're looking for some great March Ideas, keep scrolling down.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Wishlist Wednesday!

Joining up again with Hanging Around In Primary for Wishlist Wednesday!  
Visit other great teachers to get a special 20% off an item in their store.
 I'll give you a hint on the item in my store... we will be celebrating this holiday soon and it contains great printables for L.A. and math!

Check out a few pages from the product!
You can grab this at my store by clicking here!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Math Madness Monday!

Today I'm linking up with Diana Lynn for some Math Madness Monday!  Feel free to join the fun and check out some great ideas from other bloggers by clicking here!

Here are a few ideas that have helped my kids in math:

Math Fluency:
Each night, I have my kids complete a similar version of minute math. Usually, in Minute Math, children have a minute to do as many problems as they can. With this activity, it's the opposite - they do all the problems and write the time below. You start with a column of simple math facts that you can make with Excel. When the students are ready, they hit the timer, complete the column, and write how long it takes to complete.. Each week, they try to get a better time with new math facts.  They love trying to beat their own time.
Here's an example:

EngageNY also has some great free resources/timed sprints that have helped my kids work on math facts as well.

Math Games:
I love to play math dice games in my room.  I'm down for trying anything to get kids to practice concepts in a fun way and keeps them interested. That being said, if I do a dice game, it's only with foam dice! It makes everything so much quieter!  If you don't have foam dice, pick up an 8 1/2 X 11 piece of foam to use as a sound buffer.  You'll thank me!

Here are some other fun dice games you can play with your kids at home:
10,000 Dice Game (older kids)

Number Representation:
For the younger kids, I worked on a Number Representation Activity which works great as a center.  Children try to match up all the different ways to show a number. They also use the greater than/less than cards to compare numbers shown in different ways. Check out Number Match Up here!

Here's an example:

Feel free to share some of your tricks or ways to practice math fluency.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

March Activities!

Despite the snow piling up outside, I'm convinced that spring is around the corner. At least I hope so!

This week, I learned the hard way that a laptop and a large cup of coffee are a disaster waiting to happen. If anyone has had a laptop that has met the same fate, all you can hope for is that you can recover your files and your hard work won't be lost forever.  I encourage everyone to back up all your files! 

Now, let's get onto the fun spring and St. Patrick's Day activities.

March is a great time of year.  They say it comes in like a lion and out like a lamb.  With my kinders, we wanted to show it!  The kids loved the lion/lamb paper plate activity.

First, we painted the lion plate since
the lamb plate is made from just a plain white plate. 

Then, we added the eyes and ears.
You can grab the templates here.



Let's hope for some lamb weather soon!

This year, I created a NO PREP St. Patrick's Themed Language Arts and Math Printables. It includes a family project (all letters are included), writing activities, and lots of  great math printables that are aligned with the common core  for grades 1-3. 

The family project came out great!  I decided to print mine out on green tag board.

Here, we practiced adding together multiple addends with our Over the Rainbow Game (that's what one of my kids called it!)

 Here are some more of the activities:

In the past, for St. Patrick's Day, we made these Wish Upon Rocks.  
First, we painted them green (just don't use washable paint, it'll just wash off)

  The reality is that after painting 10 or so rocks, your table really looks like this!
When they were dried, we added glue and gave them a little shimmer by adding green or gold sparkles.  

 All done!

For Dr. Seuss's birthday, we created Dr. Seuss hats. Who knew that red gummy savers would be in such high demand? So, we settled for some rainbow hats!

We also love to make leprechauns.

Stay tuned for some more March activities!