Sunday, July 31, 2011

Freebie: Weather Patterns math activity

This freebie is a patterning activity. Students use the cards to create the listed patterns with 3 repeats and then record in their books or on the recording sheet. 

Click on me to download for FREE from TpT

If you like this, you might also like my Weather in Our World 88 page unit on TpT (for some reason, even though I've contacted them three times now, it is not able to be uploaded to Teachers Notebook....)

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Arrgh Pirate Ordinal Number Bingo

I don't know what has gotten into me lately, but I'm sooo into pirates! I don't have a pirate theme in my class (in fact, I don't have a theme) but I'm starting to make lots of pirate themed games. 

Here is one I just finished for students to consoldiate understandings of ordinal numbers to tenth. 
 Arrgh Bingo
This game comes with 6 board games (for up to 6 players) so is perfect for math stations, centers or rotations while you meet with other groups.
How to Play: Students take turns turning over a card. Students read the instructions (e.g. Find the fourth letter in 'anchor' or Find the 10th letter in 'Shiver me timbers'). If the letter is on their gameboard, they cover it with a counter/unifix cube. Either first to spell a word on their board or first to cover the board (depends on how long you have) wins.

There are two types of calling cards - Set 1 with word ordinals (e.g. fourth
and number ordinals (e.g. 4th) to differentiate. 
The same instructions are on each set of cards - just the ordinal (word or number) is different.

You can grab it from TpT and Teachers Notebook. Remember, TpT is having a Back to School promo with 10% off everything starting August 1st. I'm joining in the fun and also offering 20% of my entire store for 4 days only starting 1st August. You need the special TpT code B1T1S to receive the 10% discount - added to my 20% sale you'll get 30% off! You could get this baby for just over $1! Check out my store here.  I'm also having a 20% sale over at Teachers Notebook over the same days. 

Thursday, July 28, 2011

By request - Reading Focus Wall

I had a lovely comment the other day about my CAFE board signs and a request to make up similar signs for a reading focus wall.

Well, here they are! 8 focus wall signs to fit a pocket chart (3x6 inches or 7.6cm x 15.2). The signs read: 
  • Spelling words
  • Challenge words
  • High frequency words
  • Robust vocabulary
  • Genre
  • Comprehension
  • Objectives
  • Writing strategies
  • Question of the Day

Download them here

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

It's Getting Dicey Linky Party - Dice and Counters

I use dice and counters everyday for games and activities so I've had to come up with some guidelines for their use. 

I don't know about you, but I was sick of students rolling their dice across the table or floor and throwing it up a little or even behind them! Arrghh it drove me mad! So, the number 1 rule I have for dice is that the dice must be in your hand OR in the bowl. It's not allowed anywhere else! I've just got home from school and unfortunately don't have any photos but I'll try to remember to take some tomorrow. I just use the black Lean Cuisine (frozen meal) bowls or noodle bowls. Students pick up the dice and roll it into the bowl. Simple and free! You could also simply use paper or plastic bowls.
My favourite dice - blank dice that I can write on and make them any dice I need! Today I used blank dice that I had written 'er', 'or', 'ir', 'ur' and 'ar' on for a game involving r-controlled vowels.

Other favourite dice? Place value dice
and 0-9 (10-sided) dice. I looove these dice for mental computation games.

Now, I also use counters... A LOT! Either as pawns to move around a board or for bingo games etc. I've literally got 1000s of them and I try to keep the right amount of counters included with the game so that students do not have to find the counters they need. This is easy with film canisters! I just add the numbers of counters needed for each game and/or each player to the film canister and add to the bag the game is in. I found clear film caniseters at the Science Bob Store.I write on the caniseter how many counters there should be and students are responsible for ensuring the right amount go back in!

What do you do with dice? How do you store your dice? What are your favorite games with dice? What creative ways do you use dice in your classroom? Head on over to Little Miss Kindergarten's It's Getting Dicey linky party to share your ideas

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Daily 5 Work Board/Rotations Freebie

I have to say that I LOVE the Daily 5. However this term I have needed to modify it to the Daily 2 :( We have been given new guidelines for how we have to set up our English and literacy time (and show how we differentiate between the two) and what rotational type activities we HAVE to do. 

So.... I can do 2 rotations each day so I'm making up a board that will show what students will do for each rotation (rather than having them choose). I am sticking with the Daily 5 components as such (I've always done Write About Reading rather than Work on Writing and do a separate writing workshop) but I've also had to do Writing Skills as one of the rotations.

We've been told we have to do guided reading (check - Read with Teacher), independent reading (check - Read to Self) and a 4 Resource Model activity (check - Write About Reading) and we are allowed to do a Word Work (check) and Writing Skills rotation (check). I've included these so that there is some variation and not always independent reading and a reading response (how boring!). We also have to do three 31 minute (yes, 31 minute!) English lessons per week.

I haven't finalised how I'm going to do this yet, but I've made up some rotation board labels in case you are interested. I've included all the Daily 5 type ones even if I can't use them :(

There are 6 to a page. 
And my favourite because I have brown hair and wear glasses!


I have just started following a blog called First Grade Pandamonium. Amy is hosting a a giveaway for a great Book Club packet. And the best bit is that everyone wins. Check it out here. The giveaway ends Monday so get in quick! 

Yearn to Learn is also having a fantastic giveaway of all 48 of her Task Cards Sets - something for everyone in this lot! This one also ends Monday so there's no time to delay! If you haven't already done so, you can check out her Blog Mixer Linky party while you're there!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Pirates HTO Place Value Dominoes

I've been working on this for ages, but finally it is ready! I've just listed Pirates: Hundreds, Tens and Ones Place Value dominoes on TpT and Teacher's Notebook.
The aim of Pirates: HTO Place Value Dominoes is to consolidate understandings of place value, particularly hundreds, tens and ones. It is suitable for individual, pair and small group work.

The game has 4 different sets of domino cards (24 dominoes per game).
Set 1 (pages 4-7): Match numbers to Base 10
Set 2 (pages 8-11): Match number words to Base 10
Set 3 (pages 12-15): Match number words with numbers
Set 4 (pages 16-19): Match numbers with its place value expanded form
Each set has a different colored border and picture to easily allow misplaced pieces to be returned to the appropriate game.

You can check it out on TpT and Teachers Notebook.

I also have Under the Sea: Tens and Ones dominoes and Tens and Ones Bingo available if your interested.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

We have some winners!

Thank you to everyone who entered my giveaway! Congratulations to Mrs Dillard from Oh the Places We'll Go for winning 1st prize! You get to choose 3 products from my TpT store!

Also big cheers for Cheryl and Mrs Shepherd who have won 2 and 1 items respectively. 

Please leave a comment within 48 hours to let me know which items you want emailed to you. 

Thanks again to everyone who entered! 

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Only 1 day to go to enter my 3, 2, 1 giveaway

That's right, so jump on board before you miss out!

Remember, there will be 3 winners: 
  1. First prize chooses any 3 items from my TpT store. 
  2. Second prizes chooses any 2 items. 
  3. and you guessed it, third chooses 1.

Will you choose these, some of my top sellers? Click the link or images to see these packs in more detail.


Enter the giveaway here.

Bits and Pieces

I am utterly exhausted. I don't know what it is about the teaching profession but at times it can leave me feeling totally drained. And it's only my second week back from our Winter holidays! Don't get me wrong, I've loved being back. It was wonderful to see all my little kiddos again and they've actually been a joy to teach with no behavioural problems to speak of. I've just had so many extra things to do and my to do list is forever growing - we tested our little Year 2s on a past years Year 3 national test and have had to go through and analyse the results for each student to put them in band scales for reading, spelling, grammar/punctuation and math, my son has regional softball try-outs an hours drive away over two days, a friend is coming to stay so I've been tidying up and I've been printing and cutting and laminating like my life depended on it! It's the same thing after every holiday... I sit and wonder Why didn't I get more done!!

So, needless to say, I haven't been working on all the great new things that I want to post for you guys. I've almost finished my new Pirates HTO Place Value Dominoes and Multiplication concept mats. I should have some freebies this weekend so check on back.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Beach/Ocean Theme CAFE headings

I had a comment under the Froggy CAFE headings asking whether I had found any with a beach/ocean theme.... well I hadn't, so I decided to quicky make some up! They are about the size of half a page landscape. I only did these quickly after I read the message so please be kind!

I've also attached the ones I use in my class this term. While on our Winter holidays, I rearranged things in my room and my old headers didn't fit - in fact I've only got a small CAFE board. So these ones are about half a page each, portrait orientation.
You can grab them from Google Docs by clicking on the pictures.

CAFE headers - froggy theme

I've been blog-hopping all over the place this morning, trying to catch up on the neverending list of unread posts in Google Reader! I happened to stumble across these very cute froggy CAFE/FACE posters. If you have a froggy theme you'll want to check them out. The teacher Jackie, from Here we go Loopty Loop, arranges them as FACE, but they can easily be put has as CAFE. 
You can check them out here on her blog.

Saturday, July 16, 2011


Only 5 days to go to get in for my giveaway!

Remember, there will be 3 winners: 
  1. First prize chooses any 3 items from my TpT and/or Teacher's Notebook stores. 
  2. Second prizes chooses any 2 items. 
  3. and you guessed it, third chooses 1.

What will you choose?

Enter the giveaway now!

P.S. Now I'm off to see Harry Potter, finally! Sob, sob, it's all over....sniff.

Teachers Notebook shop now open!

OK, so I'm following the trend and have started a Teachers Notebook shop! It does seem REALLY good for sellers since once you add up your TpT monthly fee (annual charge divided by 12) PLUS their commission, it ends up costing more than the Teachers Notebook monthly fee. So if you sell, you should sign up - there is a link to the side of my blog.

If you buy, than it doesn't matter where you buy from because the products cost the same! So really, it's a win-win and you are helping your favourite sellers! You can visit my Teachers Notebook shop by clicking the button here or in my sidebar. I've only got a few items listed at the moment, but more will  be added soon.

Giveaways Galore!

To  save on blog posts I've combined these three wonderful giveaways into one: 

Anna from Crazy for First Grade has teamed up with some buddies to offer an awesome Jungle Giveaway to celebrate 700 followers (which is A-MAZ-ING!!). You could win jungle themed literacy and numeracy centres, reading and writing strategy posters and a jungle themed kit! WOW. Get on board here.
Another giveaway on at the moment is hosted by Kristen over at Ladybug's Teacher Files for reaching 1000 followers!! She is giving away Mix and Match and Pre-made blog templates!! They are so cute - check them out at Ladybug's Teaching Resources. Head on over to her blog here to enter.

And you wouldn't believe it but Ocean's of First Grade Fun is also having a giveaway! Here's another blogger who has 1000 followers! Here 10 winners - YES, 10 winners - gets to pick an item from her TpT store. Check it out here.

Congratulations to all of these inspirational bloggers! Remember to check out their TpT stores this weekend! Pretty much everyone in blogland is having a sale - yay!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Freebie - Money Board Game

Here is the notes and coin version of my money snakes and ladders game. You can grab it here for free from my TpT store
Once again, it uses Australian currency, but if you want to let me know where I can get yours, I can make up a copy for you. 

Remember to join my giveaway!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Adding numbers to your comments

Now that I am having my first giveaway, I thought I'd better learn how to number my comments. I googled it and came up with this very easy to follow tutorial. It has screen images and everything so anyone can follow it!

100 Followers Giveaway!

I am so excited and grateful to have 100 followers on my blog and google reader! Thank you for visiting and especially a big THANKYOU to people who comment - you ROCK! 

To say a big thank you, I'm having a giveaway!

Now to post anything from here to OS (where most of my visitors are) would cost a fortune, so I've decided for my first giveaway to go with giving away my TpT items. 

There will be 3 winners: 
  1. First prize chooses any 3 items from my TpT store. 
  2. Second prizes chooses any 2 items. 
  3. and you guessed it, third chooses 1.
Perhaps you'll choose one of my board games - click to see more info: 

 Or one of these other items:
OR you may decide to hold off for one of the other items I have in the works - more place value and other board games, word work activities and a Halloween unit are all starting to come together. 

You have up to 9 chances to win: 
  1. Follow my blog (1 entry)
  2. Follow my TpT store (1 entry)
  3. Subscribe to my blog in Google Reader or another subscriber of choice (1 entry)
  4. Add my blog to your blog list (2 entries - remember to comment twice)
  5. Blog about my giveaway and leave a link in the comment (2 entries - remember to comment twice)
  6. I've just made a button so add another 2 comments if you grab it! Let me know if it doesn't work!
 Please remember to make a separate post for each entry!!
You can enter until next Thursday, July 21st July.

Thanks so much for taking the time to read my blog!!

Giveaway at Mrs Kincaid's First Grade

Mrs Kincaid's is giving away an awesome album, Brainy Beats to one lucky winner. Another winner will also receive a Starbucks voucher. Click on the image to go to her giveaway.
Head on over to her blog - time is almost up!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

HELP! I really dislike my blog settings

Arrgghhh, this is really starting to bug me. About a week ago my blog started showing only 1 to 3 posts on the main page! I have my settings set to 10 posts, but no, only 1-3. It really makes my blog look empty.... very bad since I'm really new to the blogging world and trying to build up my followers! If you know how to fix this can you please comment?!

OK, I did some reading on the net and there's that pagination thing that happened quite a while a go now. So I've made the image files smaller and a few more posts are showing up on the main page... but still, one or two images were all that was on each page, can't see why that was a big deal.... but anyway, hopefully I'll continue to at least have a few posts on the main page.

I LOVE my external hard drive

I just can't live without my hard drive! I left it at school yesterday, remembered while driving and turned around again to go and get it! It has everything on it that I need - planning, created and downloaded resources, assessment data, fonts and photos.

The thing I love about it the most is that it doesn't need to be plugged in (to the power socket). I just have to plug it in the USB port and I'm ready to go. It is small and slim - about 11cm by 7cm and only 1.2cm thick - so I can slip it in my handbag if I'm in a rush and heading out the door.

This is similar to what it looks like - mine doesn't have the white squares on it.
I love my data so much I try to update each week - there is SOOO much that I create, download and update (like assessment data and planning) that I'd cry if I had to start back over.

What do you do to store all of your awesome cyber ideas? 
Are they on a hard drive?  What kind do you use, do you back up your computer often?
Join Kinder Kraziness with your ideas of backing up your data!

FREEBIE - Dollars and Cents Board Game

This is a snakes and ladders board game where kiddos collect money as they travel around the board. BEWARE: there are also pickpockets who will steal your hard-earned money or you might be generous and donate to charity! The player with the most money at the end of the game wins. Can be played by 2-4 players and is tabloid/A3 size (alternatively print as 2 letter/A4 sized sheets and stick to a file folder). You'll need play coins to play.

This board uses Australian currency, but if you know where I can get yours, please email me and I can make up a game for you. The coins come out darker and clearer than what can be seen here when printed.

Please consider leaving feedback if you download the game. Any feedback and suggestions are welcome. Grab it for free in my TpT store.

Notes and coins version coming soon.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Amazing Giveaway and Freebies at The Lesson Plan Diva!

Wow, freebies galore!! Head on over to The Lesson Plan Diva for lots of freebies to celebrate her receiving 500 blog and facebook followers! I'm LOVING What's in a Name Glyph!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Bits and Pieces

Ahhh, back to school tomorrow for a pupil free day. Not looking forward to it as the schedule looks pretty boring. Can't wait for Tuesday though, when I see my kiddo's again. I miss their smiles and hugs and "I love you, I love you, I love you Miss C" which one of special needs kids HAS to tell me at least 3 times before he leaves each day (actually, he says it and cuddles me while fiddling with my hair, goes and gets his bag, comes back in and does it again, leaves and then comes back and does it one more time!). Always makes me smile. 

I've bought a rug which hasn't been delivered yet. It was the best one I could find for the price. It's going to be another 4 weeks! The meeting area will be incomplete without it (my old one is getting very raggedy).