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Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Let's Play a Little Game...

I'm 37 week pregnant today...and I am sorry for you, my blog readers, but I have baby on the brain right now. Instead of fighting it, I thought you could embrace it with me by playing a little game.


My due date is July 29th. The doctors have said that they will not let me have baby girl late, due to the health stuff they have been watching us for, but they haven't set an induction date yet. So the question is...

When will Abigail arrive?

How to play: In the comments section of this post, leave the date you think Abigail will arrive. The person with the closest date or correct date will win any item (excluding bundles) from my TPT store. If more than one person picks the correct date they will all win an item from my store. You can only pick one date...

Happy guessing! Right now your guess is as good as mine!

Friday, July 4, 2014

Happy 4th of July-Giveaway Winner Announced

Happy 4th of July everyone! It is a rainy day here in PA due to Hurricane Arthur churning off the coast, but I'm so thankful for what this day represents and to have my husband home today.

I am happy to announce the winners of the Simulation Giveaway!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Congratulations Ursula and Elizabeth! Please check your e-mail for an e-mail from me so you can pick your prizes!

Just a reminder, if anyone has an simulation suggestions for what I should make next I'd appreciate them. If I use your idea (and you are the first to suggest it) you will receive a free copy when it is finished!


Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Tried it Tuesday/Wednesday-Zoo Design

While I was on my unintentional blogging break, I was not allowed to work the second to last week of school, and I was put on "light duty" at school for the last week. That means that I was allowed to go in for a few hours each day, but that was it. While my body and baby needed me to be on light duty...that meant that I needed to to make sup plans for at least half a day (some days all day) for the last two weeks of school.

It isn't the easiest thing to come up with plans that will keep the kids engaged and focused. While I was picking out things for my kiddos to do I stumbled across a wonderful project that Matt from Digital: Divide and Conquer had shared with me earlier in the year, Zoo Design: Area and Perimeter.
I had already taught my students how to find area and perimeter of polygons earlier this year, so I was able to copy the pages in the packet, as well as the directions for the sub, and leave it in a folder for them to do one morning. I came in after the students had been working on this for a little while. The students were still busy working, and enjoying the activity.
Since it was the last week of school, I wasn't planning on grading this activity so I let the students work with a partner if they wanted to. It was great to see them enjoying and reviewing their skills so close to the end of the school year. I wish I had taken pictures of the project, but totally forgot! If you are looking for a fun, engaging, and differentiated project for your kiddos to do to practice area and perimeter this is just what you need!
http://fourthgradeflipper.blogspot.com/2014/07/tried-it-tuesday-business-cards.html
What activities/projects do you use to end the year? Looking for some more great things that people have tried? Check out Holly's blog for Tried it Tuesday!

Don't forget to enter the giveaway!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Currently July

I can't believe it is July! My word, does time fly! I'm linking up with Farley at Oh' Boy 4th Grade for Currently!

They are all self explanatory...but I will say that I miss being able to fall asleep in a reasonable fashion. I'm entering my 9th month of pregnancy when everyone says get extra sleep before the baby comes, and I can't seem to get comfortable enough to fall asleep. I will live...it's just annoying.

 Just a reminder to enter the giveaway...just a few more days left!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, June 30, 2014

Monday Made-It Nursery Edition

Happy Monday everyone! I'm excited to link up for Monday Made It this week. It's been so long since I've "made" something to share for this linky.
http://4thgradefrolics.blogspot.com/2014/06/monday-made-it-summer-week-5.html
Technically, I didn't exactly make what I am going to share today, but I did help to build (Actually, I just held things for my husband) and I did organize/decorate...so that counts....right?

Many of you know I am very pregnant. My little girl is due at the end of July, although we had a big scare about a month ago and thought we may be having her two months early. Thankfully God is in control, and she is still "cooking." She will be 36 weeks tomorrow, so we are just about full term, and if I am honest, it is fine by me if she comes anytime.After our scare, we went into full setting up the nursery mode. We had everything, just needed to finish washing, building, and organizing everything. With the help of my parents, we were able to finish it in a weekend. So here's our little girl's room...ready for her whenever she decides to make her appearance!
Don't mind my yoga ball...


All that is missing is a view of the large bookshelf that is full of picture books already...my husband thinks I may have a book addiction problem. Don't tell him, but I think he may be right.

What have you made recently?

Don't forget to enter the giveaway I'm running this week!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Social Studies Simulations Giveaway

When I was a student in high school, one of my favorite teachers was a history teacher, because he was the first teacher that made history come alive for me. When I decided to become a teacher, I knew that I didn't want my students to have to wait until they were in high school to have social studies come alive.

This past year, I discovered that most of my class (all but one if I am honest) hated social studies through a graphing activity I use in the beginning of the year. I decided I needed to do a little more to liven my curriculum up even more than I have in the past.

Early in the year the students had their first experience with an Underground Railroad simulation that I found on TPT the year before. It was a perfect way to make things come to life in a short time period.

Throughout the year I made three new simulations for my students to enjoy:
Pilgrim Dice Simulation
Oregon Trail Dice Simulation
Gold Rush Dice Simulation
Each of these simulations comes with a list of suggested books, a writing prompt, and the actual simulation. The simulation takes about 15 min, (it may take longer if you have a larger class.) I normally use the rest of the class period having the students work on their writing prompt and debriefing from the activity. I use these simulations as a wrap-up for our unit...however some teachers prefer to use them to kick off a unit. It is totally teacher's choice!
It can get a little crazy with all your students walking around the room at the same time, since they move from station to station at their own pace, so it is really important to lay down some ground rules before you start. I have found that the simulations do leave a lasting impression on the kiddos. They remember their results of the simulation more than other things we do in class.

Since I've had such a great experience using simulations, I want to give you all a chance to use them as well! I'll pick two winners on Friday, they will be able to choose any two of the three simulations for themselves.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

One more thing...
Now that I am taking time off to start a family, I'd love to make more simulations. What topics would you love to have a simulation for? If I use the topic you suggested you will receive a free copy of that simulation when it is completed as a thank you!
 

Friday, June 27, 2014

Reading Skills-Teaching Cause and Effect

Happy Friday everyone! It is nice to be putting two posts up in the same week. I hope you are all enjoying your summer vacation so far!

I know many of you are like me, you are always trying to find a fun new way to have your kids practice a skill. This year, I had a group of really bright kiddos, so I found I didn't need to spend a long time on teaching the skill, but rather found it more useful to do quick reviews throughout the year. My normal quick reviews are to make a SMART Board activity or play a quick game, but I found I was using the same ideas and decided to switch things up a bit.


When I decided to review cause and effect, I took situations from Sign of the Beaver, the book we had been reading together as a class. I typed up the causes on one colored paper, and the effects on another color.

The students had to match up the causes with the effects. As they worked on them, I walked around the room to "check" their work and guide them if they matched up something incorrectly or were stumped on something.
The kids enjoyed the activity, and it only took 10-15 min. It was an easy and fun way to review a concept.

What are your favorite ways to review a skill with your students?