Bye Bye Spring Break

Actually I am an off-track-year-round kind of teacher. So I have

been off for a month, and I am headed back Monday.  Boo Hoo!

But really I miss the students and did a reasonable job on my To Do

list. I have a few things left to do and of course laundry.  I hate the

laundry! It is always with me... Why does my family have to wear

clothing. Darn you Adam and Eve! If she had only thought about

 the laundry, she may have made a different

choice! I know I would have.

Hunger Games ...

Well, while the rest of you saw the movie this weekend, I devoured the book! I ordered it weeks ago, and it took Amazon an eternity to get me my book.  It was worth the wait. My goodness. I loved it, but I am nervous to go on to the next books. Somebody blurted out that they didn't like how book 3 ended... so should I read the rest? 

Who cares what one person says right?

But I am exhausted, and cannot even get myself to B&N to buy the
next one. This maybe because I was up until 1:30 finishing the book.  I sat on the sofa reading like my life, or Katniss' life depended on it.  Anybody want to make a dish of poisoned berries
for the president of the Capitol?  I can make a mean cobbler! 

Anyway, our new house has a slight "reading all night" disadvantage over our old house.  In the old house when I wanted to stay up all night and read, I would drag my blankets and pillows into our bathtub and shut the door. Hey don't judge, it is surprisingly
comfortable in there. Think about your tub filled with blankets and pillows. It is a little reading cocoon. The bonus in the old house was the reading light was blocked out by the door. Should my slumbering "Mr." awake, he has no idea I am irresponsibly squandering my precious hours of sleep.  He thinks, well, he doesn't think I'm reading all night. But now, the new house has a big beautiful arch between the master and the master bath. Arch. No door. Light gives me away.

 "Go to sleep, Katie" he calls.

 I move to the family room.

 "Are you still up?" he asks when he is up for a midnight snack.

 Caught again. 

"I promise only a few more pages." I say.

 I move to the living room. 

An hour later, more calls from the bed..."You're going to be grouchy in the morning, Katie." 

But then genius strikes. This house has a guest room ! Yes! The guest room! Comfy bed! Newly decorated. My new haven of sleep wasting reading. I love you, new house. I really do.

Now back to the Games. Are you kidding! I'd have been dead in the
first 60 seconds because I would pass out thereby, triggering the explosives. If I didn't pass out, I can neither climb trees, nor run fast, nor fish, nor gather food (unless you count raiding a pantry of clearly marked boxes that say Cheez-its and Lucky Charms).

Peeta. That's all I'm going to say. Maybe she should have gone home, eaten a few of his bakery rolls, and tried him on for size. I mean I get it, Gale, but I don't get it..... I get it.  But then again at the end of the Phantom of the Opera I always feel a little bad for the phantom.... Like Katniss I do not forget debt easily.

Boob job: That would have been a score. Katniss would have gotten over it. I would have. Imagine awaking hungry, skinny, and big boobed! That sounds like a dream come true. I awake hungry, headed to the treadmill, and seeing my previously mention parts shrink along with my thighs. Although the Capitol might have thought it fashionable to make them look like two differently sized enormous lumps of coal as tribute to her district... so maybe not. Cinna was right... maybe...

What's gonna happen next. I am too tired to really care, but should I get myself to B&N today???

Print Like a Jedi Master


This has come out of a place of needing my students to print neatly and actually making it happen.  Through daily 5 minute board work lessons & cool pages, my students really are printing like Jedi Masters.  I have found that some kids don't "see" or have not learned to look at  the lines so they are not able to use them. Seeing, naming, and using the lines is key. In class we call them sky line, tree line, dirt line.

How many times do you get crazy “k”s like this?
Or worse, the ALWAYS capital K... drives me nuts too.
These cards HELP. 
Because we name the lines, we have a common vocabulary.
I can talk about the dirt line (bottom line) and how I want that k to touch the dirt line. Or in the case of a lower case g, I can remind the kids, they don't start at the sky line. They start at 
the tree line and go down into the roots!
During 5 minute board work.... 
nobody can hide at their desk forming letters incorrectly. 
I can all of them!

After I model, help, and help some more, 
we move on to the practice pages.
Here are samples of the pages included! 

Star Wars Printing 7  Star Wars Printing 3

Each page has the letter inside real words with a picture clues. 
Words are kept short to make them readable to young eyes.
By the end of the alphabet I have transitioned into sentences.

Star Wars Printing 4

As a bonus, I included the 4 diagraphs!

Star Wars Printing 1    Star Wars Printing 6

I named the groups based on how the letter is formed. And I created “stay sharp” pages to review.  We do one page once a week, and let me tell you they work hard on these pages because neat work means a skittle. If I have a child who is making the letters p, q, j, y, and g incorrectly I can hand them the " roots letters " review page for homework. This is also why they work hard on review pages because no one wants extra homework.

I have included pictures because some of us
need the see the whole thing before they can
feel comfortable taking the plunge.
So for those of us who want to see it all, here you go.
These are the ball and stick letters.

Letters with Roots

Letters with Roots

Sky Scrapers

Middle Men

Curved Letters

I also made Digraphs Pages as a Bonus!!!

Plus you get the board work cards and 
a detailed description of how to use them.

Star Wars Printing 7Star Wars Printing 3

These two pages are a little freebie for you. They are waiting for you at  TpT in the “Download Preview”. Enjoy!

Click tpt

Brown Bear Adjectives Book

Do you love the book ? Me too! I'm celebrating the 45th anniversary is this student book with a freebie! Well 3 freebies actually! I did one for each grade level K-2.

 First Grade 

Second Grade 

I really hope that you enjoy teaching adjectives using these books!

Each page gives students the power of choice ! After we write and illustrate our book, we use our dark yellow crayon (dandelion) to go back and highlight the adjectives. Funny enough, I think that the kids know what an adjective is by the end of writing the book. But I could not be more wrong! By going back and highlighting, I can see a few "freeze". They don't know... They have been pretending to know!

By the way, 


They didn't all get it to 100% accuracy!?!

Call the Common Core Cops!

There are always 5 kids who don't "get it".

Usually it is the same five.


Highlighting is my go to teaching trick. In this case, because we do the highlighting after their whole book is written, I am able to catch the kids who "tuned in"a little late in the program. I can see them freeze before highlighting because they were not really listening. Shame on them!  It happens. I sort of imagine their thought bubble to look like this......

What has 'teacher' been talking about for the last 15 minutes? I like her shirt. She has pretty hair. But adjective? ? ? What is an AdJecTive?"

It is in that moment of pause, crayon suspended in mid air, I can catch them & meaningfully reteach. I pull them back and we discuss each other's pages.  They can see the adjectives in another person's work so much easier than their own. Kids are such funny creatures! Their own writing mystifies them, but the writing of another child is clear as day. 

Sweets Shop

Brown Bear Student Book
Grab the First Grade Edition, the Kindergarten Edition and the Second Grade Edition
Star Wars Manuscript
Printing Practice Pages
Check out more details from this post.
To purchase from TpT for $6 click here to go to TpT

Super Hero 2 Digit Addition with and without regrouping

Check out more details from this post
Or purchase from TpT here
More Than One
Included in this is a sweet little unit are:
Anchor Chart
Booklet that teaches the 3 main rules for making words
"mean more than one"
39 student "posters" where students show what they know
find it on {  TPT  }
Read more about it on this blog {post}
ABC Order:
40 Holidays and Themes
These are the included holidays and themes:
Happy New Year
Chinese New Year
Valentine's Day
President's Day
St. Patrick's Day
Easter / Spring
Earth Day
Cinco de Mayo
Mother's Day
Father's Day
4th of July
Grandparent's Day
Fire Safety
The Beach
Rain forest
Ice Cream
Colors & "Mouse Paint" Mini Lesson
Sea Life
Fairy Tale
Jack and the Beanstalk
Summer Olympics
Star Wars

Common Core Smart Art

Click on over to { TpT }

Smart Art Nouns: Winter

To purchase click here
American Symbols

Read about this amazing fluency packet from this post {here}
Purchase from TpT {here}

Chicka Chicka Vowel Vowel

To read more about this little baby click this blog post {here}
To go to TpT and pucrchase click {here}
Mammals of the Woods
Common Core Informational Reading, Fun, Tests, and Art
Read more {here}.
To go directly to TpT click{here}
Read about this packet from the blog post {here}
Purchase from TpT {here} 
Read about this amazing informational reading packet from this post {here}
Purchase from TpT {here} 
Read about this packet from the blog post {here}
Purchase from TpT {here} 
Smart Art Leprechaun
Read about this packet from the blog post {here}
Purchase from TpT {here} 
Read more { here }
Purchase from {Teachers Pay Teachers}

To see all items in my shop click the picture below.