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Thank-you!!! It's like 212 Degrees!

Oh my goodness - what started on Tuesday as an (almost) 300 Followers Celebration, has now officially turned into a 400 Followers Celebration!  You guys ROCK!!!  I can't thank-you enough for your positive comments.  You can still get in on my Friday Freebie until today (Saturday) at 6:00!

This celebration reminds me of 212 Degrees (and no, it's not the weather - although it's felt like it lately) - 212 Degrees is one of my favourite videos to show my students on the first day of school.  It's all about how putting in a little bit of extra effort makes anything possible.  Last year I showed it to my students and the response was so incredible, I've decided to show it every year.  I show the video right before we set our goals for first term - it's pretty inspiring.  Last year one of my students told me she showed it to her mother, then her mother showed it to her hockey coach, then her hockey coach showed it to the entire team.  LOVE IT!  I plan to make up a cute little goal setting sheet to go along with this video and post it for you - and I will - but I'm heading to the beach with my kiddies shortly.  I'll try to get it made up and posted tonight.  I can also see this video shown at a staff meeting - I find the message very inspiring - and we all need a little inspiration sometimes.

My BEST Friday Freebie EVER!

It's officially Friday Freebie time - and because I'm having my celebration week, this is the biggest freebie I've ever offered.  Happy browsing and Happy Friday!!!

Update:  I know some of us had some trouble viewing TpT today (myself included), so here's the good news - I'll keep this offer going until Saturday at 6:00 pm!  Thank-you for all your positive comments so far - you sure do make a girl feel appreciated. :)  And, WELCOME to my new followers.  

Still Celebrating ...

I'm still celebrating my followers!!!  There's nothing like a summer celebration, and I'm only half way through my summer vacation.  I don't start back until September 6th (yay!).  But rumour has it, many of you start back soon.  To get you in that back-to-school mood, you've got to stop by Lisa's Effective Teaching Articles blog.  She's having an AWESOME week long back-to-school party with different prizes every day.  The party starts on Monday, but you'll want to check in before that.

For the third day of my week-long follower celebration, I've got three bookmarks for you.  Click on the pictures to download each file.  My girls are loving these bookmarks, and have been helping me laminate them and cut them out.  I'll be well-stocked for the first few weeks, at least.  Be sure to check back in early tomorrow - I'm having a FABULOUS FRIDAY FREEBIE FOR my FANTASTIC FOLLOWERS!!!  It's a big one - you're going to love it (and it's not 4 bookmarks) lol!.

Happy Thursday ... I'm getting ready for my webinar to start!  Can't wait!

Celebration Day 2 ... And Some Other News

Tomorrow night I'm participating in Laura Candler's Mastering Math Facts webinar.  I'm quite excited about it.  I already have her Mastering Math Facts resources, and they are fabulous, so I can't wait to learn a little more from her.  The webinar is all about helping students master their multiplication facts.  Read more about her webinar by clicking here.

I also want to share a great blog and great giveaway with you.  Rachel Lynette, from Minds in Bloom, is celebrating her 100 followers.  Become a follower of her blog and facebook page, and you can choose any product from her TpT store.  Trust me, you'll want to check this one out - she has some FANTASTIC resources!!!

I want to say thank-you to Charity, from the Organized Classroom Blog.  She featured one of my products on her facebook page today, and the response was incredible!  If you're not already a follower of her blog and facebook page, you really need to be.  I have gotten so many great ideas from her - the amount of resources she finds and shares is UNBELIEVABLE!

Lastly, the celebrating is continuing here at Runde's Room.  Yesterday I began my week long celebration of (almost) 300 followers.  Today, it's officially a 300 (well, 315) Followers Celebration (thank-you!!!).  So, on day 2, I have 2 bookmarks for you.  Click on the pictures to download your own copies.  I hope you enjoy.

Happy Wednesday!

Celebrating (Almost) 300 Followers!

WOW!  If you would've told me a few months ago I'd have (almost) 300 followers on my blog, I wouldn't have believed you.  Actually, if you would've told me I'd have a blog, I wouldn't have believed you.  But here I am - and I am LOVING it!!!

I love stalking following all of your blogs - you all have such amazing ideas!  I love the comments you leave on my blog - again, such amazing ideas and support.  This has been such a fantastic learning experience, my only wish is that I had started earlier.  I am truly a better teacher because of all we share.

So, to keep sharing the love, I'm having an (almost) 300 Followers Celebration.  I go through bookmarks like crazy in my class - students are always asking for them, and I willingly oblige, knowing it will keep my precious books in tact a little longer.  I've been having so much fun drooling over my new scrapbook kits from ScrapDelicious, and my new laminator is still sitting in its box, begging to be let out, so I decided to create some decorative bookmarks - so much better than the freebies I usually give my students.  As a thank-you to you - my fabulous followers, I'm going to post one set of bookmarks each night for a week (and maybe, just maybe ... I'll hit 300 tonight!!!)

So, here goes ... the first set is "If you can read this, thank a teacher."  Thank-you, teachers ... I hope you enjoy!

Click here or on the picture to download your own set.

In Our Class with Zoo Burst

I came across a new site a few days ago that I wanted to explore a little further - Zoo Burst.  You can use Zoo Burst to create interactive pop-up books.  I thought this would be a great tool to use on the SMARTboard.  I signed up for a free teacher account, and it looks like teachers can create accounts for their students, too.  They do have a premium account (not free), but the standard account lets you create books that are 10 pages long.    Last night I came up with a neat idea about how I would use Zoo Burst.

I've seen some great posters about "In Our Class" floating around the blogs and pinterest.  Oh' Boy Fourth Grade has a fantastic one!!!  I thought I'd take that idea and create a pop-up book to show the students on the first day of school.  Now, this book is still a work in progress, but I wanted to share this site with you.  Click on the exclamation marks above the "characters" to read more on each page.

I think my students will have a lot of fun writing narratives with this site.  I did this one pretty quickly, so with a little extra work and effort, the students should be able to create something excellent.  Finished stories could be embedded on a classroom blog or website to share with parents.  How fun is that!?!

Happy Tuesday!

Couldn't Pass This Deal Up!

One of the first posts I saw this morning was at Oh Boy 4th Grade.  She is having an AMAZING giveaway for ScrapDelicious ... did I say AMAZING???  So, I started to enter her giveaway, and then went to look at the ScrapDelicious site to get a few more entries.  And.I.Fell.In.Love.  Seriously.  Now, I know I'm not a very lucky person when it comes to all these fabulous giveaways, and I'm all about the instant gratification, so when I saw this,
I was hooked!  You can buy the ENTIRE contents of both stores for $50.00, or one of the stores for $35.00.  Of course, I bought BOTH.  The amount of materials I received is INCREDIBLE!!!  And their customer service is absolutely top-notch!  Today was like Christmas - I just kept unwrapping gift after gift as I downloaded more and more!  And it gets better ... they will randomly choose one person who purchased both stores and refund the price.  You could get all this for FREE!

You've got to check this one out -  click on the picture to see for yourself.

Happy Sunday!!!

A Magical Day

It was my oldest daughter's eighth birthday party today.  My three little girls love a party.  She wanted a magic theme for her party, and because we weren't hiring a magician, I hit up my newest obsession, Pinterest, for some ideas.  I found a great cake that I got inspiration from.  I took me over 4 hours to decorate it, and cost way too much (remind me next year to buy a cake), but she LOVED it and told me it was the best cake ever!!!
I also found an idea for the cutest fruit salad.  I used a star cookie cutter for the fruit (my hand still hurts from pushing it through all that fruit), and topped each skewer with a star-shaped rice krispie treat - magic wand fruit skewers.
For the activities, we made giant bubbles with a hula hoop (trapped inside a bubble), played pass the magic wand, guessed the flavours of magic beans (jelly beans), and learned a couple magic tricks.  It truly was a magical day, and my little eight-year old had a blast ... and you know what - she deserves it!

Friday Freebie!

OK - this will be a quick post today - I'm prepping for my oldest daughter's birthday party tomorrow.  She's 8!  We're having "A Magical Day" in the backyard ... one of these days I'm going to get smarter and have her party somewhere where everything's taken care of for us, but for now I'm still having too much fun with the theme parties.

So, today's Friday Freebie is for math.  This is my Solving Word Problems poster set and graphic organizer.  I have these posters laminated over my math bulletin board.  My math bulletin board is titled, "We've got problems ... Solved!"  The kids always get a kick out of that.  I spend a lot of time modelling how to solve problems step by step, and the graphic organizer really helps the students with this.  Click on the picture to download your own copy.

Enjoy and Happy Friday!!!
(It's back to cleaning for me ... )

Never Work Harder Than Your Students ... Use Technology

As I mentioned before, I participated in my very first webinar last night.  It was hosted by the STEM Institute, and I really enjoyed the experience.

The webinar was called:  Communicate, Collaborate, and Create: Building Dynamic Classroom Projects.  It was based on the 7 principles outlined by Robyn Jackson in her book, Never Work Harder Than Your Students.  I haven't read this book, but I think I need to ... I'm afraid I'm definitely working harder than some of my students most days.  ;)

The neat thing about this webinar was that it took the 7 principles from the book, and applied them to technology.  I want to give you a brief outline of what I learned last night, and some of the sites we were given.  I haven't explored a lot of the sites yet ... but as I try them out, I'll share my experiences with you.

1)  Start Where Your Students Are ...
Adjust your teaching to meet your students' interests (use more technology because that's where their interests are)

2)  Know Where Your Students Are Going ...
As teachers, we are preparing our students for jobs that don't even exist yet ... we need to prepare them the best we can.

3)  Expect Students To Get To Their Goals
We want students to reach their goals, but they don't all need to be A+ students - many truly successful people were far from it in school.

4)  Support Students Along The Way
This is where the technology resources started - here are some websites we were given to help students learn and meet their individual learning styles: - (English to text lingo conversion - I blogged about this last night - see my post below).
Google Translate - Language translation - spells it (correctly and phonetically), and says it.
Skype - great for author conferences, social studies (talk to people in other countries), keep a student connected who has been absent, or is away on a trip. - easy way to create your own blog through your email - great for setting up a class blog to keep students / parents informed.

5)  Use Feedback
Feedback needs to be descriptive and given in a timely fashion.  If feedback is to be beneficial to the students, it needs to be given to them quickly and consistently. - It's almost like a kind of facebook - but you can set it up for your classroom - post questions, reading clubs, etc. and give feedback to students as they answer questions. - Students can use this for their writing assignments, and not worry about bringing files back and forth to school.  Teachers have access to the page to make corrections / give feedback throughout the writing process.

6)  Focus on Quality Rather Than Quantity
Get ready for this ... you've got some exploring to do ... - I've set up an account with glogster so we can make multi-media posters next year.  I can so see myself using this with science / social studies. - A site for making movies and slideshows. - Another site for making movies and slideshows. - Yet another site for making movies and slideshows - this one looks like it has a few more features (like slow-motion). - Bring your still pictures to life by making them talk - I can so see myself using this next year with my SMARTboard lessons!  Wouldn't it be cool to make a fraction talk and explain how to do a concept during a math lesson?!? - I am definitely going to investigate this one further.  I'd like to make a wiki for one of my science units next year - assigning students a different part or concept, and then putting it all together.  We could even print off the pages later and turn them into our own reference book. - A lot of the teachers at the webinar talked about how they would use this resource to set up student portfolios ... hmmmmm ... intriguing. - Students can create their own ebooks (which other people can access) and display them on a shelf (similar in looks to shelfari).  A great way to publish their writing, and make the writing process more authentic for them. - Another multi-media site great for presentations.  Use as an introduction to a new unit, or have students create their own presentations for a certain topic.

7)  Never Work Harder Than Your Students
To summarize, by using these resources, your students will be applying bloom's taxonomy while exploring new technology and creating fantastic technological presentations.  However ... with all these new resources to explore, I have a feeling I'm going to be working pretty hard for a while ... ;)

Do any of you these any of these websites in your classroom?  If you do, I'd love for you to leave a comment and tell me how you use them.
Happy Thursday!!!

Writing Prompts with Text Lingo ... So KEWL!

Do U undRstNd wot I'm writing?  I cn garNT yor students do.  OMG - how kewl wud dey tink U R f U rOt a writiN prompt UzN thR language?  wot f U lt dem wrte bak 2 U n txt lingo?  Put a whol nu spin on a pln old writiN assignment.

I took part in a technology webinar tonight (more on that in tomorrow's post), but I just HAD to visit one of the sites I learned about the minute the webinar was over.

Transl8it is a trendy, FREE site that translates English messages into text lingo, or vice versa.  I'm definitely going to use this next year in my writing classes.  I will translate one of my writing prompts into text lingo and display it over the projector for the kids.  I think I will even let them write me back in text lingo at least once ... but it might take this 'old' teacher weeks to figure out what they are writing ... rotfl.  ;)

New Products At My Store

I uploaded two new products to my TpT store today.  Click on the pictures to download a preview of the products.

Any Day Drama Circle
This drama activity with a general theme has a similar format to the "I Have / Who Has" game. This is a fun any day activity. There are 40 cards, that follow in a sequence, with each card having a different instruction. Students assemble in a circle to perform their scenarios. As each student finishes acting out his or her card, the student with the next card in the sequence starts acting out his or her card. The game continues until the last card is acted out. 

Paper Bag Character Study
This assignment is a fun alternative to the traditional book report. Using a paper bag, students draw a picture of the main character, report on his or her likes and dislikes, and interactions with other characters, and analyse how the character has changed throughout the novel. Inside the bag, students include 10 items that are related to the character.
A version of this resource is included in my Characterization Resources for Language Arts and Literary Elements Resource Binder.

Lastly, I read a great article on the Teacher2Teacher Blog today - 10 Tips for First-Year Teachers.  If you are a first year teacher, or just got your own classroom, you really need to go over and check this one out.

Happy Wednesday!!!

Integration - The Name of the Game

As a teacher who is responsible for teaching ALL subject areas (except French), I have had to become a master of integration (just my humble opinion lol).  The amount of curriculum expectations we have to teach keeps growing.  Every time we have new P.D. something else seems to be added on.  The presenters always begin with, "This isn't new ... I'm sure you're already doing this in your classroom ... BUT ... JUST ONE MORE THING ..."  It's a good thing I love finding ways to integrate the subject areas, and the teacher nerd in me loves how I can get multiple subject assessments from one assignment.

This was a fun assignment we did near the end of the year - and the best part was I got a math, media literacy, art, health, and drama mark from it.  We were studying volume and surface area of rectangular and triangular prisms in math.  I paired the students up and gave them two pieces of bristol board.  The pairs had to draw the nets for both prisms, then assemble them.  I set a challenge to see what group could create the prism that had the largest volume and the largest surface area.  When the groups had finished, as a whole class we checked the volume and surface area of all the prisms.

Then the pairs had to turn one of their finished prisms into a cereal or candy box.  They had to include specific information on each of the panels (including nutritional information for health).  When the pairs had completed their product boxes, they had to create a 90 second commercial for their product using one of the methods of advertising we had studied in class.  The commercials were so much fun!  Many of the groups even created jingles (although it wasn't required).  I videotaped the commercials, and the students couldn't wait to watch them.  We even popped popcorn for the event!

Happy Tuesday!!!

Sidenote:  I'm keeping my TpT store on sale for today, as well.  I know the site was having some server issues yesterday, so if you wanted to do some shopping and were unable to, you can still get 20% off my products today.  

Christmas in July SALE!!!

It's here!  It's the official Christmas in July SALE!  ALL my TpT products are on sale for 20% off until midnight tonight.  Click on the tag below to bring you to my store to take a peek.  While you're browsing, be sure to download some of my freebies.

There are over 30 TpT sellers participating in this SALE.  Click on the button below to see a list of all participating stores.

Happy Shopping, and Merry Christmas in July!

Christmas Craft Ideas

I'm linking up to the TBA Christmas Crafts linky party.  I LOVE making Christmas crafts with my students (and everyone at my school must know it, because somehow I am now responsible for coming up with the Christmas crafts for our entire school's Christmas craft workshops).  So get those ideas in ... I'm going to need a lot more next year!!!

My first craft is my personal favourite.  I love making quilled snowflakes with my students - I do it every year.  After the students get the hang of rolling the paper, it keeps them engaged and quiet for a long time.  And the best part is ... you probably already have all of the supplies you need.  I use the paper shredder (not the cross cut kind) to make the paper strips.  We roll the paper around large paper clips to get the shapes started.  It usually takes a few class periods to make all the shapes needed, each student stores the little shapes in an envelope with their name on it.  When the shapes are finished and glued together, the snowflakes can be embellished with silver sparkles, but I think they look beautiful just the way they are.  Use a little fishing line or string to make a loop to hang them on the tree.
Here are some pictures of my quilled snowflakes - these are ones I've made before, and hang on my own tree.  If you search "quilling" or "quilled snowflakes" on youtube, there are plenty of videos that will show you how to make a snowflake step by step.  Once you know a few of the little shapes, it's easy to make your own creations.

The other two ideas have pictures from my sister's blog, but are activities I have done.  The first one is a handprint snowman ornament.  I did this one with my own children a few years ago after I found them online somewhere (this time, I actually gave my sister the idea) - and it turns out so cute!  This would be a great craft for a primary classroom.  We made extra ornaments to give as gifts to the grandparents.  I cherish these ornaments - and know I always will.  Click here for instructions on how to make these adorable ornaments.

Last year my sister posted this cute fingerprint craft she had done with her kids.  Click here to see how she made it.  The moment I saw it I knew it would make a fantastic bulletin board border for our seasonal work.  I cut strips of white paper, and stapled them around the bulletin board to make a border.  Then I drew a long, curvy line around the border to act as the wire, and had my students stamp their painted thumb prints all over the line.  Quick, fabulous, easy, and super cheap! 

I hope you're enjoying our Christmas in July.  Link up with a craft of your own!!!

Happy Sunday!

Study Ladder

I found another new site last night that intrigued me - well, it may not be new to you, but it was to me (I'm always the last one to find out about these things).  Study Ladder is an organized online learning center.  They have lessons in 10 different subjects (but specialize in literacy and math), from grades pre-K to grade 7.  And best of all ... it's FREE to teachers.  I set up an account last night, and was pleased to find out you can have an unlimited number of classes.  So, I set up a class for my daughters and plan to start exploring the site with them further this summer.  So far, I'm intrigued.  I think it could be a great tool in the classroom, and students can access the site from home, so it would be very helpful for students who need a little extra reinforcement.  Does anybody else use this program?  What do you think of it?

Don't forget to download my festive freebies - they're only free until tonight at midnight!  And don't forget about my big Christmas in July sale - July 18th.  All my TeacherspayTeachers products will on sale for 20% off!
Happy Saturday!!!

The Winners Are ...

Thanks to everyone who linked up to "My Favourite Books" linky party!  It was my very first linky party and I'm happy you joined me.  I found a lot of great new books, added too many to my amazon wish list, and even went out and bought a new book last night.  I drew my winners last night through the random number generator.

The first winner was Emily at Playground Party.  She won my Reading Comprehension Strategy Resource Binder.  Emily, I sent you an email very late last night with the resource.

I was sooooo happy I reached 250 followers, so as promised, I chose another winner.  Katie, from Once Upon A Teaching Blog, was chosen to receive 5 products from my TpT store.  Katie, I sent you an email very late last night with the details.  Congratulations to both of you, and I hope you find my resources helpful.

Don't forget to download my Festive Friday Freebies - they will only be free until tomorrow at midnight.  I hope you're enjoying Christmas in July - there are so many fantastic freebies and ideas over at Teaching Blog Addict - make sure you make a visit there.  And speaking of GREAT freebies, head over to the Vintage Teacher.  She has the most fantastic deal that you don't want to miss out on!!!

Lastly, don't forget I'm having a BIG sale on July 18th (celebrating Christmas in July and my oldest daughter's 8th birthday).  ALL my TpT products will be on sale for 20% off!  A perfect time to get some back to school shopping done!

Festive Friday Freebies

Hello.  My name is Jen, and I have a problem.  I'm addicted to Christmas.  Well, to be completely honest, I'm addicted to buying and giving Christmas presents.  Maybe I shouldn't show this ...
This is Christmas at my house ... and this is just my family.  Not gifts from the grandparents, or aunts and uncles, ... just us.  It's not my fault - really, it's not.  I blame it on my three little girls who give the BEST reactions to ALL presents - so it's totally their fault ... really.

Anyhow, my little addiction is good news for you!  It's officially Christmas in July on TBA, and have I got some Festive Friday Freebies for you!!!  Download ... enjoy ... and dream about Christmas.  All is ask is that you become a follower if you are not already one.  (And I always welcome ratings on my products - 'tis the season for giving).  Be sure to download right away, though.  These products will only be free until Saturday at midnight.

My first product is my Christmas Writing Prompts.  This Christmas Activity pack contains writing prompts and Christmas stationery for 8 different forms of writing. Forms of writing include: persuasive letter writing, procedure writing, journal writing, narrative writing, biographical writing, informational writing, newspaper article writing, and thank-you letter writing.  These writing prompts can be used as a centers activity during your writer's workshop, assigned as a summative writing activity, or as a free-choice free writing activity.  Completed writing activities can be posted to create a beautiful Christmas bulletin board.

My second product is Christmas Mad Libs on the SMARTboard.  OH.MY.GOODNESS - my students LOOOOVE this one!!!  This fun seasonal notebook file for your SMARTboard features mad libs for 5 different popular Christmas songs:  Jingle Bells, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Santa Claus is Coming to Town, Jingle Bell Rock, and We Wish You a Merry Christmas. The file also contains a teacher instruction page. This activity is a creative and entertaining way to practice parts of speech in an interactive way.

Merry Christmas!!!  And Happy Friday!

Look What I Bought Tonight ...

I went shopping ... again ...
Look what I bought tonight!
I went out to buy a binding machine - can't wait to use and abuse it in my writing program this year.  And then - laminators were on sale for $34.00!  How could I pass that up??  I already have my own at home, so this little baby is off to my classroom.  Woo hoo!  Let the projects begin - I'm heading over to pinterest to get those creative juices flowing.

Did you download your copy of my Book Talk yet?  It's only free until midnight tonight.  However, midnight tonight means the start of Christmas in July at TBA!!!  So I will be putting up another fantastic freebie then - you have to stop in and grab this one!

I'm sooooooo happy to announce I made it to 250 followers .  My Favourite Books linky party also ends at midnight tonight - at that time I will be picking TWO winners - one winner will get my Reading Comprehension Strategy Resource Binder, and another lucky winner will get to choose 5 products from my TpT store!!!  There are still a few hours to link up if you want to get in on this.  Everybody that links up gets a copy of my 30 Book Challenge - inspired by The Book Whisperer.

Don't forget - ALL my TpT products will be 20% on Monday, July 18th, for Christmas in July!  Drop by to get your wishlist started.
Happy Thursday!

Some Odds and Ends

One of my fantastic followers just let me know I had a typo in one of the freebies I offered - Book Talk.  OOPS - I HATE typos!  So, I fixed the file and reloaded on my TpT page.  I'll be offering it for free until tomorrow at midnight if you want to download a corrected version.  Or, if you're one of my fabulous new followers, get your chance to download it now.  Click on the picture to bring you to the link to download it.

Speaking of fabulous new followers ... I'm only three followers away from 250!  My "Favourite Books" linky party ends in just over 24 hours.  If I make it to 250 followers by the end of that time, I will be picking one person that has linked up to win 5 products from my TpT store.  Spread the word!!!

Have you noticed my new navigation bar?  My fabulous blog designer, Emily from Polka Dot Pixels, just added them for me.  I've listed all my free products from my TpT page under the Free Products Tab.  My Featured Products page lists all of my products I've discussed on my blog.  My Sites to See tab lists all the websites and technology resources I've discussed on my blog.  I plan to update all pages as I blog about them, so check back often.

I just signed up for a Building Dynamic Classroom Projects webinar for next Wednesday.  It is put on by the STEM Academy, and I'm very excited about it (but don't tell my daughter yet - it means I'll be missing her soccer game).  Click here to sign up or read more about it.

TBA is having a special Christmas in July promotion from July 15th to July 18th.  I LOVE Christmas - celebrate twice a year?!? - I'm in!)  Check back here on Friday for a Christmas freebie.  On Monday, July 18th, ALL my TpT products will be on sale for 20% off!  Merry Christmas!  Click on the tag to bring you to my store and start building your wishlist!

Lastly, I had a great time making handprint butterflies with my girls today.  They did a great job, and we can't wait to hang them in their bedrooms.

Happy Wednesday!!!

Reading Comprehension Sundaes

It's sooooo hot today!  I don't have air conditioning and it's 83 degrees inside my house!  Now the no air conditioning thing didn't used to be a problem, I do live in Northern Ontario after all, but today - it's a problem.

I've kept myself cool by surrounding myself with ice cream - ice cream products, that is.  A few days ago Shannon, from 6th Grade Reading Street, posted about this awesome Real Reading Sundae idea she had found.  I liked the idea so much I emailed the original author (Stacy Cervone), and asked her if I could create a lesson from it.  If you haven't already, check out her website - she has fantastic language resources!

When creating a lesson, I couldn't find the perfect sundae for the analogy.  So, I had to create my own.  As I'm not the best artist, this was the hardest part.  I think I did alright.  My kids think it's awesome - and I had to redraw sundaes for them for the rest of the day.

Check out my lessons by clicking on the image.

I also have a fraction sundae lesson for those of you looking for math ideas.  I did this last year, and my students really enjoyed it.  I really, really enjoyed it because I got a math and an art mark.

Enjoy!  And I hope you're staying cool!

Moving at a Snail's Pace ...

We're one week into our summer holidays here, and anxious to start on our summer crafts.  However, my craft bucket was looking a little empty, so I hopped over to the Dollar Store and spent an embarrassing amount of money (for the Dollar Store, that is).  This should keep up well stocked for the next little bit.

Although I teach the older grades, there must be a little bit of Kindergarten teacher in me.  I LOVE having theme days with my kids.  My sister had posted a really cute craft on her blog, and I knew I wanted to try it with my kids.

So, today's theme is ... Moving at a Snail's Pace.  [Author's note - this is a title only.  With my three children (ages 3, 5, and 7), it is impossible to move a snail's pace (that is, unless I have somewhere to go).]

So, I set the mood for our day by playing this song for them.  My girls love these funny songs by Bryant Oden.  After we sang it a few times, it was on to the craft.  Unfortunately, I couldn't find my glue gun and the white glue just wasn't working, so it quickly became meltdown time.  Luckily, I averted the major meltdown by reading a book (and sending my husband to the store to buy a new glue gun).  We must have thousands of kids books (literally), but I couldn't find a book about a snail!  So I chose to read a Franklin book - Franklin's friend is snail - good enough!

After our book, we came up with words that rhyme with snail, and then wrote and illustrated little poems about a snail.  This was soooooo cute!  They did such a great job!

This is Katie's poem.  She's my five year-old.  She just finished junior kindergarten this year.

This Allison's poem.  She's three, and still has another full year before she goes to junior kindergarten.  She's working on writing her name - she made those 'A's all by herself!  She said this is a picture of a giant snail under a rainbow, with mommy watching.  :)

And then it was time for lunch.  My sister does these fabulous "Fun Food Fridays", and my kids beg to have "Fun Food Fridays" no matter what day it is.  Sometimes, I oblige, and today was one of those days.  This is our snail-themed "Fun Food Saturday".  They LOVED it, and apparently I'm the BEST MOMMY EVER!!!  (I thought about getting this in writing for those days when I'm the worst mommy ever).

After lunch I broke out my brand new (cordless!!!) glue gun, and we finished the craft we started earlier.  Aren't they the cutest little snails ever?  I think they look great in the garden and I tried to convince my girls to let them stay there and act as "snail scarecrows", but I'm pretty sure they're destined to become Barbie's pets.

What a fun day!  But now I'm ready to relax, and hopefully, maybe, actually take it a snail's pace.

Happy Saturday!

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