February Shout Outs

I love February! 

I do so many fun activities with my students, and  I 

get to enjoy their "January Jump". 

This is that time of year when everything you have been 

saying for the last 4 months has finally "clicked". 

Their skills take a giant leap forward and

 learning/ teaching is really fun! 

I have a lot of fun teaching Chinese New Year with my "little loves".

It is a very fun yet rigorous learning adventure!

I am teaming up with Rachel Lamb to offer you our two units.

Rachel's includes: 

  • What's you sign? chart and Venn
  • a Fun Facts about China foldable mini book
  • Make a New Year Banner craft (I included all the animals so you can use any year)
  • Math word problem scavenger hunt
  • Chinese New Year booklist and story map to use with any book
  • Make a red envelope activity-includes color/bw coupons
  • Double Bubble for comparing our new year celebrations with China's
Katie's (mine) includes:

  • Social Studies Test on Chinese New Year
  • ABC Order
  • Synonyms and Antonyms Activity
  • Panda Science Fluency
  • Panda Science Test
  • Writing- Word of the Day “China”
  • Writing- Word of the day “Pandas”
  • “I love Rice” Math Graphing 
  • Chinese New Year Poem and Rubric
  • Bulletin Board / Vocabulary Wall images
  • Panda Smart Art
  • Dragon Hats
  • Chinese Lanterns 
  • Interactive Student fact book all about the New Year

Just enter the rafflecopter below :0)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The giveaway ends Sat at midnight.

Remember the BiG sale is on for TpT Super Bowl Sunday.

28% off everything in my store!!!!

It is time already to shout out some love. This month has flown by!

The rules of this sweet linky are to shout out a blog with more

followers than you and a blog with less followers than you.

The blog with less followers than me is


This is a darling new blogger who tells you about life with the littles.

She has wonderful ideas and  is really “bringing it”

to get her kids ready for school. 

Today’s post is about PJ Day 

and a simultaneous visit from the Dept. of Health. 

yep... that's a footed Hello Kitty "onsie"

She is my kind of gal!

You have to visit and read her post.

She also did an amazing winter display…

This is a glimpse of the process. Let me tell you this about a tenth of

the gloriousness of the finished product!

It is awe inspiring!

I know what I am doing next year…..

While you are there, give her some “follower”

love if you are so inclined.

She is brand spankin’ new. Let’s welcome her to blogging!

My shout out for the blogger with more followers than me is

Blooming on Bainbridge

I adore this woman. I really do.

She cooks the most outrageous goodies.

You have seen her stuff all over Pinterest. 

You probably have an entire board dedicated to

“Things I want to make”

and 1/2 the stuff on your board is hers!

The best part is that she is a retired 1st grade teacher!!!!!!!


I mean look at that picture…. every picture is this good.

Right now, she is almost done with her 40 days of clean eating…

10 more to go would be my guess. I am learning about juicing.

soups, detoxing, and I am patiently waiting for her

to post on the “cookie” diet.

White Chocolate Cookies~ Blooming on Bainbridge


Since the cookie diet does not exists, I may have to wait longer than

expected.  I will just continue to believe that a happy heart burns

more calories and these cookies will make my heart happy.

How’s my logic?

Head on back to Lisa’s to link up with us

and shout out your two favorite blogs!

You can also link up in the post below about your

highs and lows for the month of January.

high low

Or you can link up with Farley!

Most of mine are 100 self explanatory...

the 1 more follower will help me get to 500!!!

Running out of hot water often means a tepid tub (yuck)


We are linking up like crazy here!

Don’t know what to blog about?

Link up with us, we have all kinds of ideas to keep you smiling!

High / Low Linky Party

high low
Please join me in sharing your
highest and lowest moments/memories from January.
This will be a reoccurring linky party that will revolutionize blogging.
Well maybe not, but it will be fun and it will
give us a chance to get real about the lows in life
as well as the highs.
Here goes….
“Fasten your safety belts, Its going to be a bumpy ride.”-Betty Davis
HIgh (2)
I have to say one of the high moments of my January came
to me as a classroom creator for TpT.
My high was seeing American Heroes make it to #7 on the top 100 list.
I worked on it for months.
I mean months…
Like through Christmas break even…
Many dear and darling friends and family edited for me,
cheered me on,
you guys liked it! 
love it
You liking it was the best part!
Thank you for making that happen…
What a joy!

My low point was losing one of my students.
Well, losing him was not the low point.
{I am about to get really real with you. Are you ready?}
My low point was that  I was happy to see him move on.
Please don’t throw tomatoes.
I actually loved him, but he was soooooo much work.
No matter how much I gave him, it wasn’t enough.
No matter how many times I would reteach a concept,
he never scored more than a 50% on any given test.
Which would mean another re-teaching session.
He had every peer buddy in place…
sight words
I did 1 on 1 guided reading
I used every trick ….
You name it.
Plus, he hurt the other children in my class.
He would mutter mean things, pinch, and trip others.
Socially he was in pain and misery loves company.
He grew in tiny steps- barely measurable.
He was not special day, nor did he need RSP services,
He was just low, distracted, and busy.
He was wearing me out.
Then he moved.
Being soooo HAPPY to lose a student, made me so sad.
I felt horrible being happy, but I was happy.
I know that another teacher will pick up where I left off.
I know that I planted and watered and tended his little garden.
I am HAPPY to let someone else bring in the harvest (so to speak).
I am SOOO HAPPY that I feel sad.
But don’t cry of me Argentina….
Tell me all about your Highs and Lows of this month.
Share pictures… spill the beans… let that cat out of the bag!
Let us high five and hug you with the stories you share.
Let the comments you receive be your both
"Oscar Moment" and your free therapy.
Grab any and all of the graphics you want.
Link up, Link back, and comment out the person directly in front of you
and come on back to check out the person after you.
I love Farley’s Power of Three.
Here are your graphics.
You can also grab the “type onto” graphic
a-la Fraley style.
Farley, I love ya. Can you tell?????
high low Big
high low
HIgh (2)

1. Link up at the bottom of the post
2. Link back to this post
3. Comment 3 times-here, the person before, and the person after.

“Snow” cute!

As promised, here are the pictures of the snowflakes in our hallway.
We are prepping for Grandparents day,
and it is getting “snow” cute in first grade!
The entire 80 foot hallway has mittens and snowflakes all the way down!
I created the mittens page for the students to practice their antonym
skills.  You know I can’t just slap a mitten on the page.
I have to make it academic.
I used the top part to review the skill and the kids took it home.
Then, they created a darling set of mittens that shows their favorite
antonym pair either from the top portion or words from their
own beautiful brain. They had to tell me the words
before I let them write with marker.
In honor of Mr. Kindergarten I decided to use glitter on our mittens.
Now I am SURE you know this glitter trick,
but I thought I would share just in case.
Place a large sheet of construction paper on your table.
This will catch all the glitter that you shake off the students work.
I like to put my glitter in Styrofoam cup and use the hand over hand
method of keeping glitter from ending up on the ceiling.
Fold up the student work- taco style.
Shake and tap your student’s art onto the large sheet.
Fold up large sheet and tap it into the cup.

Now you are ready to move onto the next child!

I stapled the thumbs of the mittens to keep them together.
Then, I used two pieces of tape to keep them on the yarn.
To make the polka dot ones you see right behind “sun and moon”, dip the

erasers of pencils into glue, then top with glitter.  Most of my class wanted
the “Chevron” design.  We grew up calling this rick rack.  But my students
are hip and use the current lingo.
If you want to learn how to make the GiGaNtiC snowflakes then you will
want to check out this blog post { here }.
I show you how to make them in words and pictures.
This is the last step, and they are deceptively impressive.
They look so hard, but they are not.
I taught my whole grade level how to make them,
and the most common comment was “Oh that IS easy!”
If you want to make your own “Snow” cute mittens
click the picture and download . 
Download now
Before cutting have them color the back of the mittens if you want to
hang then where you will see both sides. This will look nicer.
I hope your students LoVe making them. 
Don’t feel compelled to use glitter.
They look amazing without glitter.
I say this for my bestie, Celeste.
She has a self diagnosed “art phobia”.
The thought of glitter might give her a panic attack,
but crayons she can handle.
Where do you land on art?
Do you- Love it.
Do you think- It’s OK.
Or is it - Valium anyone?
Click the pic to link back up to freebielicious

Bathing Suits! Already?

This happens every year. I go to Target to buy mittens for our annual snow

trip.  When I arrive at Target this is the scene I see.


That’s right folks. No mittens to be found. It’s time to buy a bathing suit!

In January!!!
That’s Rude… I need mittens.

Now this is less crazy here in Sunny So. California because it can be 40

degrees and rainy one day and 80 degrees for a week afterward.

But is this what you see where you live?

Are you using your snow blower and

buying a bathing suit at the same time???

Seems cuh-ray-zee to me!

You know what else is crazy?

Spending all your prep time remaking

Anchor Charts every year.

Anchor chart

Well, I have a little bright idea for you.

This is what my anchor charts end up looking like…
Perhaps because I hang them on my door….

It’s the only spot in my classroom not covered with

mammals of the woods right now.

I like teaching with Anchor Charts.  I find them powerful revisiting tools,

and it makes the learning concrete.

But look at all that artwork…

…..ripped up by wild first graders….

……RUNNING like wild things walking politely to recess……

I love my cute hermit crab guy… Should I throw him away???

No Way!

I just cut off the awesome art!


Then, I file it with the corresponding story.

It is ready to be taped onto next year’s chart.


I love using plastic sheet protectors as file holders.

I am always worried something will fall out of a traditional file folder.

But you can fling a sheet protector full of papers across the room

{Frisbee style}

and NoThInG will fall out.
Plus my file box stay nice and neat.

This is my Houghton Mifflin drawer.


These are my Trimester 1 and 2 and 3 files in their drawer……

I used plastic folder dividers to dived the trimesters.
You can see a row of them in the very back of the drawer.


I buy these plastic sheet protectors in bulk.

At $10 for 100 that is pretty cheap.

I wait for the sale at Staples and then buy 3 at a time.

This filing system works so well for me.

If a file gets too full, then I staple two together and off I go.

Here is how it works if I have a really big “file” like

my Mammals of the Woods curriculum.
Each mammal has their own stapled file.




It works for me and thank God it does. 

My classroom always has a little bit of a mess in one spot or another,

but if you come in my room and ask me

“ Do you have a copy of the _______________ you gave me last year”

I can have it in your hands in less than 30 seconds….maybe 45.

I lOvE this system!