Sunday, June 29, 2014

TIps and Tools for Back to School: Math interactive Notebook/Lapbook

It's time for another tips and tools for back to school with the Primary Peeps.

This week, Lisa from PAWSitively Teaching is sharing her interactive math notebook with us.  

 This post is loaded with tips and tricks as well as advice for using interactive notebooks in primary classrooms.  I am a huge fan of interactive notebooks after using them this spring and Lisa's post gave me not only more ideas and strategies for using them in my classroom, but also helpful pointers as well.  Her Number Basics Interactive Noteboook/Laptop is FREE for only a week.  Folks, you don't want to miss this!  Hurry, grab it while you can!

Make sure to hop back her next Sunday for some more tips and tricks for Back to School! :)

See you soon!

Friday, June 27, 2014

Five for Friday

Once again, it's time for the Five for Friday linky party with Doodlebugs Teaching

I am getting ready for the Teachers Pay Teachers Conference in Las Vegas in a few weeks.  I love this business card Dreamlike Magic Designs made for me to correlate with my blog design!  I can't wait for them to come in!

I'm also super excited that some of my classroom decor came in the mail from Schoolgirl Style yesterday!

I plan on using the blue and white fans and green polka dot pom pom for a corner of a bulletin board and the hanging lanterns will go on top of a bookshelf since we aren't allowed to hang them at my school.  I love Schoolgirl Style's Preppy Nautical set!

I worked really hard this week to complete a math interactive notebook set on time.

Are you notebooking?  I just love interactive notebooks!  I love how they keep the kiddos invested and engaged.  I also love how they serve as a great reference, especially since the kiddos make them themselves.  You can check it out in my TPT store by clicking on the pic above.


I'm spending lots of time with these two this summer.  My son, Tyler and my dog Bentley and I'm loving every minute of it!

I'm also doing a ton of reading.  I've read 3 books in the past week alone.  Don't you just love having the chance to get caught on the things that you want/need to do but don't have time for during the school year?  I'd love to hear about your week!  

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

Not many words are needed for this! So glad that to be sharing this on Sugar and Spice!

 I got this confirmation by email yesterday!  I'm so excited I can't even stand myself!

Are you going to the Teachers Pay Teachers Conference in Las Vegas?

I'm loving it!

I'm loving this summer vacation, how about you? I also loving Covered in Glitter and Glue's  linky appropriately titled...

 Just hop on over to her site, grab the button above, blog about what you're loving, click on the "add your link" button at the end of her post and that's it!  Easy, peasy!  So here's what I'm loving...

I'm loving this anchor chart storage system that I found on Pinterest.  Click on the picture to take you to the site.  My name is Julie and I'm addicted to anchor charts.  Currently, I have been doing this to store anchor charts

but I like the lack of space that Teaching with a Mountain View uses.  

I am obsessed with interactive notebooks lately.  I started using them at the end of this school year when our math curriculum needed to be supplemented to meet the common core standards.  The kiddos love them!  They are a great reference guide, the interactive nature keeps them interested and motivated, and I love how they also serve as a great reference guide.  There were quite a few times when I said to a kiddo "check your notebook for help."  There are some great interactive math notebooks on TPT such as this one by Lucky Little Learners.

I am currently working on making a math interactive notebook on time that I hope to post within the need week or so. 

 This is the design/color scheme I have chosen for my classroom this year

This is the Preppy Nautical Lime Green Collection from Schoolgirl Style and I am in love!  Have you checked out her site?  I can pretty much guarantee it that you would not leave without making a purchase.  I cannot decorate my classroom each year without her.  

I would love to hear what you're loving!  Send me along a comment below or link up to share!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

And that's a wrap....

And it's a wrap!  My 17th year of teaching has come to an end.  I always get a bit sad to see the littles go.  However, I am looking foward to a lot of this....

I love to read and I never get the chance during the school year.  I bought these books last week and I have read all but one already!

I am also looking forward to spending my summer with this love...

This is Bentley.  He is a 1 1/2 year old beagle that we rescued from a shelter.  He has quite a story.  Bentley came from Kentucky where he was a Canine Companion.  He was in prison, raised by a prison inmate who taught him all his basic commands (sit, stay, down, heel, etc.).  After he "graduated" he was released to a shelter here in MA and that's how he came to us.  He is such a love and such a cuddle bug.  He suffers from a bit lot of separation anxiety from me so this summer we are going to work on me being able to leave the room without him and then progress to me leaving the house without whining, whimpering, and howling.  Poor little guy.

  I also plan on working more on this blog and creating and selling more on Teachers Pay Teachers.  I'm hoping to get an interactive math notebook set up by the end of the week (if Bentley lets me).  

What are your summer plans?  I love to hear from you so please do share!

Tips and Tools for Back to School: Week 2

This is week 2 of our blog hop.  Myself and the fabulous group of gals who make up Primary Peeps are coming to you each week with some tips and tools for you to use in your classroom. 

Last week, Leah Grasty from Grasty's Second Grade Goodies shared with us a fabulous freebie of a math planning guide for second grade. We are talking daily lessons, aligned to the common core with all (yes, all!) the planning done for you.  Woah!

This week the fabulous Missy from Dirt Road Teacher is sharing her thoughts and ideas on using parent volunteers in the classroomDo you use parent volunteers in your classroom.  I'd love for you to share with us your thoughts and ideas in the comments below.  I really do love hearing from other teachers!

In my district, I am required to use parents in my classroom on a daily basis. Dirt Road Teacher's fabulous volunteer contract is a great resource for both myself and parents.

 Just like the kiddos, I have found that when parents know clearly what they will be doing, some classroom rules and procedures, expectations, etc. they are much more effective in the classroom and the experience goes much more smoothly.  Dirt Road Teacher has shared a great "to do" list for volunteers as well as this volunteer contract on her blog.  They are both free! You can check them out here.

I use parents in my classroom during Daily 5. I assign rotations, rather than let the students choose.  This is a huge timesaver.  After my mini lesson, when the kiddos begin their rotations, I work with my leveled guided reading groups.  The parent volunteers assists students as they complete various ELA tasks (read to self, read to someone, writing, listening and word work.)  Since we use iPads during Daily 5 sometimes a parent may assist a student with an app, or help a student with "word work."  She may ask a pair of students engaged in "read to someone" some comprehension or story element questions based on the text they are reading.  A "to do list" and contract such as those Dirt Road Teacher has provided are the perfect way to make directions and expectations clear.  Sometimes with 20 little friends who all need my attention right this very minute, it can be hard to engage in going over the rules/procedures especially when I have a different parent in every day.  This is a perfect timesaver.  Many thanks, Missy!

Come back next Sunday for more tips and tools from:

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Tips and tools for Back to School

   I have teamed up with an amazing group of ladies.  We are primary teachers,bloggers, TPT sellers, and about 100 other titles.  Together we have formed a blog hop.  We are:

and we plan on giving you a little something every week that is new and useful.

We begin with Leah Grasty from Grasty's 2nd Grade Goodies.  Leah is offering tips and a planning guide for second grade math.  I know I could share use some help with math planning!

I love how the kiddos get a copy of the daily math activity every day as part of their morning routine.  We all know how valuable that continued practice is.

You can find this amazing product on Grasty's GoodiesYou can also learn more about it on Gratsy's 2nd Grade Goodies blog.

Next week, there will be ever more tips and tricks!

Pinterest Picks

Anyone else out there addicted to Pinterest?  I swear I waste hours on Pinterest.  It's like my guilty pleasure.  A glass of wine, Pinterest and almost anything on Bravo TV.  I figured I'd make use of the amount of time I waste spend on Pinterest by posting some of my favorite pins lately.

 I have a confession.  I am not a fan of water.  Therefore, I have to "spice" it up a bit so I don't turn to coke.  I have found that making a pitcher of flavored water works much better than trying to flavor an individual glass.  I am learning which fruits and veggies are the most flavorful and so far cucumber and mint leaves are my favorite.  The less calories I consume on beverages (wine doesn't count), the more I have leftover for my insatiable sweet tooth.

Something else about me- I hate the heat.  Although I love the summer I really don't tolerate the heat well so I'm always looking for some cool meals for the summer.  I was happy to find this collection of 30 salads!

I also found this adorable landform activity which I think my first graders would really enjoy.  I always try to find activities that go beyond printables or worksheets.

 And since I always have my classroom on my mind....I fell in love with this...

This adorablness is from Schoolgirl Style.  I love, love, love her products and design. I'm thinking about using this Preppy Nautical Theme this school year.

That way, I can still use the same colored bins (blue and green) that I have used this past year when using her Totally Teamwork theme.  Here is a pic of my current classroom using the Totally Teamwork theme.

How are you going to decorate your classroom this upcoming school year?  I'd love to know!! Please share in the comments below!  

Happy Teaching!

Saturday, June 14, 2014


Somehow, amongst end of the year activities and report cards, I managed to add another product to TPT.  I'm so excited to be featuring it here on


This unit on contraction words features colorful mini posters to describe and define contractions.

This unit also contains printables...

It also includes large or small group actitivities such as "I Have, Who Has", and contraction concentration...

And lastly, the unit also contains centers/word work to match contraction words.

 It's available now in my store on Teachers Pay Teachers.