Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Holiday Count Down!

Each year, my school has a transition afternoon where all the kids go and spend the afternoon in the class of next their next year teacher. 
Last year, my kids came up and I had balloons hanging from the ceiling. They asked me what they were for. I explained my class was counting down the 12 days to the Summer holidays by popping a balloon each day. Inside each balloon was a slip of paper that told the kids a special treat they were having the next day (boy, were those kids excited to come to school those last 2 weeks!). Anyway, those balloons have been mentioned a number of times this year, most recently today! I had totally forgotten that I was going to do it again! Just in a nick of time too, because tomorrow is the 12th day to our holidays!
Here's the freebie I posted last year in case you are wanting to use it. Just click on the pic.
NOTE: 3 days to go. The 'special surprise' is a big, long bubble wand that I get from Big W for $1 each. Day 3 is also our 'party day' when I give out presents to the kids (since most don't come to school during the last 2 days of school for clean up) so the bubble wand forms part of their present. I also give them a new book or two each, pencils, bookmarks and a 2012 calendar that has a poem and pictures of our year together on it (printed and laminated).

Tuesday, November 27, 2012


Another quickie post today. Here's a freebie from my Cooking Up Gingerbread Fun pack. Click the pic to grab it from google drive.

I didn't get many pics of my kids doing these activities last week but here's a few I managed between running records: 
It's funny how adding some baking trays to the above adjective/adverb sort activity instantly made it the favourite for the week!

I hope to be back soon to show you some awesome buys I made during the TpT sales!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Freebie Reindeer Fact Families

A little while ago, I mentioned that I buy a lot of my books from Scholastic Warehouse Sales. Well, the last one for the year is on this week or next week depending on where you live. You can find the brochure detailing where the events are being held here.

I've also got another freebie for you. This one is Reindeer Fact Families. 
TpT and TN
Freebie Fridays

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Freebie - Number Sequence Elves

I'm gearing up for the last 15, YES 15, days left of the school year! Where has the year gone?? I don't know about you, but the first half really dragged on for me but the second half has just shot by!

I want to keep my kidlets working hard though... I find this keeps their behaviour under check. So I'm making up some math activities to review some things we've learned this year. We actually did my Gingerbread Man Activities last week, but I didn't really take any photos because while they were quietly (and they sure were!) working, I was pulling kids to do some final running records (arrghh, the bane of my existence!). 

Anyway, since I love you all I'll give you a new math centre each day this week. 
 TpT and TN

And don't forget the sales going on at Teachers Notebook and TpT, both my stores are 20% off at the moment. Teachers Notebook will automatically deduct another 10% from your order total - that sale is on NOW! The TpT sale starts Monday (U.S. time) and you can use the code CMT12 at checkout to also get an additional 10% off the reduce price of all items.

I sure do love comments so please leave one if you're feeling the love!

(and yes, for those who've asked me before, I did spell 'behavior' with a /u/ and 'center' with an /re/ but that's how we spell it here in Australia!).
Freebie Fridays

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Cyber Monday Sale

Thanks to everyone who commented on my previous post about my change of year level. Little kids do freak me out a little but I'm actually starting to feel really excited about the change. I went and checked out my new classroom and I'm already thinking of how I'm going to arrange, set-up and decorate! 

I'm also super happy that I know my year level before the Cyber Monday plus Tuesday Sale that is happening next week at TpT. I'll be able to stock up on essential Grade 1 resources! 
 Image courtesy of The 3AM Teacher

If you haven't been around for a TpT sale before then you are in for a real treat! Many sellers, myself included, are putting their stores on sale for up to 20% off. On top of that, TpT take an extra 10% off the discounted price if you use the code CMT12 at checkout- giving you a saving up to 28%! Pretty cool, huh!

Here are some of my Christmas/Seasonal themed products if you'd like a peek: 

140 page, 20 Activity Cooking Up Gingerbread Fun pack! Here are the contents pages, you can check out a larger view in the preview file on TpT.

 Fry's Sight Word Board Games (Available for Fry's Sight Word Phrases Levels 1-3).

If you like, you can check out my store here and follow the linky party below (hosted by Michelle at The 3AM Teacher) to see who else is marking down their prices for Cyber Monday! You can begin filling up your cart now, ready to check out on Monday or Tuesday.

Here's a simple idea for a little craft I did last year with my kiddies. I can't remember for sure, but it probably came from Pinterest. One of my kidlets thought mismatched eyes would be fun! I wonder if they'll be hanging from their Christmas tree this year?

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Change of Grade Level

I was told on Friday what grade I'll be teaching next year and boy and I am terrified! I woke up last night in the middle of the night just thinking of how **hard** it's going to be and whether or not I'll be any good for the kids. 

I was also thinking of the teeny, tiny classrooms the grade level is in and the weirdness of them! I guess you've never heard classrooms called 'weird' before but they really are! One wall is on a diagonal in all the rooms, there is a little 1m x 1.5m little hallway type thing at the front of the room (what to put in that????). There is only one small bulletin board and NO wall space! 2 walls are glass sliding doors and windows from almost the roof to floor, one has the interactive whiteboard/1 small whiteboard/and the little hallway and the last side has one of those opening/closing concertina doors (that doesn't close all the way mind you so I'll be able to hear the noise of the class next door and vice versa). There is an office for the teacher - but that is a box that comes into the classroom space  and you guessed it, has glass windows from the top to halfway to the floor for the teacher to see out. We do have a kitchen to share between the two classes and a storage room! Yippee, I'm very excited about that! I haven't had one since my first year teaching. 

I know some of my Aussie friends are probably thinking it doesn't sound too bad. I remember some of the older classrooms I was in during my uni pracs and none of them had kitchens or storerooms. I guess because our school is new (only about 6 or so years old now) I've been a little spoiled! But the thought of setting up this weird shaped classroom is daunting! It's also much smaller than my demountable (portable) so I'm not sure if my things will even fit in when desks take up pretty much all the space!

Oh, by the way, I'm going to First! Term 1 of Grade 2 is always soooo very hard for me but continues to get better as the year progresses and as the kids mature a bit. The thought of those kids being a year younger is making me have palpitations! We have a step-up day in a few weeks (so the preps/kinders) will come up to their Grade 1 teacher. I guess I'll see what I'm in for then!

I'm on the lookout for Grade 1 blogs and great TpT products so I can start to get ready over our Summer holidays. Any suggestions (your own or ones you have used)? 

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Cooking Up Gingerbread Fun!

Today I just have a quick post to let you know I have posted a new 140 page pack called Cooking Up Gingerbread Fun! It has 20 reading, writing, literacy and math activities and centers. 

The good thing about it is that it doesn't include 'Christmas-y' type things (trees, decorations, presents, Santa etc) so could be used if you are not allowed Christmas themed activities at your school.

The above pics are from the preview which you can check out on TpT . It's 20% off at the moment. Now I'm back to reports.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Used and Love - Calendar Discovery

An excursion (field trip), meetings, discos and reports have kept me so busy this week that I forgot to finish this post about a great product I have used this year. It's called Calendar Discovery by Alison over at Teaching Maths with Meaning

This pack comes with a calendar and questions worksheet for each month of the year (from August 2012 to July 2013), but they will be updated again next year! Even though I don't usually do many worksheets for math, this is one that I pull out at the start of each month. The kids get reinforcement each month in identifying days on the calendar, counting forwards and backwards, working out the last day of the previous month or the first day in the next month (my kids used to always get stuck on the last two!). 

I like to put this in my Independent Work or Essential Revision math rotations each month (along with some other activities, because most kids have gotten so good at it).

I've just seen that Alison as this pack reduced right now so you can pick it up for only $2.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Used and Love - Daily Math

As you've probably read from previous posts, we have been busy, busy, busy with assessment in our class. I have 2 kids leaving early next week and one the following week who all won't be back this year so we've been trying to get all the end of unit assessments, running records, spelling inventories etc done and dusted. We are almost there. The downside is I don't have much to share about what we've been working on! So I've decided for the next week or so to highlight some packs that I am using or have used this year that I've loved. 

The first is Daily Math by Lory Evans. She has it available for Grade 1 and 2.

I've bought all of the Grade 2 packs and I'm using the Term 4 one at the moment (this is the first one I've used). I look forward to using the packs from the start of the year next year. I do have to white out the money/coins and draw in my own before I copy but the rest of it is usable for Australians. To save on paper, I also shrink down the size of pages so that 2 fit on one page. The kids haven't had any problems with the shrunken size.

Each day has 10 questions for students to complete. I love the progressive increase in difficulty as we go through the year. The consistency in the skills for each term also means I am not having to teach the kidlets what to do each week. To mark, I display the pdf on my interactive whiteboard and we do as a whole class. I get the kids to write in anything they didn't do correctly in coloured pencil so that they can see where they went wrong (e.g. for the addition and subtraction, they'll identify whether it was a process error or a basic math fact error). I think this is better for them to see how they are going than to mark it by myself and they just get a score back. 

Lory has lots of other great things in her store so be sure to check it out! She has a few There Was An Old Lady packs out that I've got on my wish list!

Saturday, November 03, 2012

November Currently

Big Brother - have never really liked it but I have been watching a little this season... Have no particular favourite to win though. 

After some really hot days lately, I'm lovin' the cooler days. 

I am soooo behind in my marking. Reports are open for us to start in week 6 so need to get a move on. Does anyone else use OneSchool for their reports? So much faster than using Word however we are restricted with our comments (we can only use comments that we have uploaded to the comment bank in One School - we can't actually even click on the box to add in our own little sneaky comment!). 

I find it really hard to find nice comfy flats in size 5. I'm usually size 5-6 but size 6 flats tend to fall off my feet when walking :(

I've had the same haircut for years... I feel like I should branch out and try something new. 

Music - I don't really listen to music. The music I listen to tends to be from the 60-80's!! The only current song I know at the moment is that Ooben Gongen Star or whatever it is (I know that from the Big Brother ads! - that ad was sooo hilarious, loved it!). When driving I tend to have the radio off and talk to my boy. So don't have a fav song at the moment. 

Link up with the lovely Farley with your Currently!