Sunday, November 25, 2012

Thanksgiving Break Project

OK, so Crystal's project motivated me to do something this break as I didn't do anything as big as she did.  My project took me only about 10 min.   That's the kind of projects that I like.  :-)

A few years ago, my husband woke up one Saturday morning and said "I have an idea"-oh boy I thought.  Next thing I knew he was knocking down our kitchen wall.  You could imagine my face!!! 

Long story short, it took awhile but he did make an opening from our kitchen to our living room.  He then put a nice little place for us to sit and eat.  That way we were able to open up our kitchen more by getting rid of our huge table that we would place all of our mail on.  In the end, the area turned out great and I really love it.  The only problem is that our mail now goes on the counter and stools in front of the counter and it bothers me-looks cluttered.  So, I thought ok, I have to find a place to put our mail and junk that we end up tossing on the counter etc. 

I found this idea on pinterest and decided to go with it and YAY my counters are now clean and so our my stools :-) :

Here's mine:

                                                            Look-no more clutter!  :-)

Today my husband worked on a project as well.  Luckily it was a quick one.  :-)  My 18 year old cat has developed arthritis in his lower back and hips.  About a year ago my husband built some steps for him to get into the bed.  He uses them often, but has gotten to where he likes to also get up on our couch with us.  He can usually make it up on the couch, but at times it is harder for him.  So my husband built some more steps for him.  Now he has steps in the bedroom to get in the bed and by the couch to get up on the couch.  Can you say spoiled?  LOL!  He is so excited about them that all night long he has been going from the bedroom and using the steps and then back out to the living room and using the ones by the couch-back and forth, back and forth.   Check them out!

Don't forget to check out the TPT and TN great sales that Crystal and I joined in. You will be able to get 30% off of our products over the next few days.


Hope all of you had a great Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Crackle Painting with Glue - REALLY!

Happy Thanksgiving!!!
Kristi and I can finally join in the celebration. We were a little jealous that many of you were off the entire week. We made it through a jam packed two days and officially started Thanksgiving break yesterday!
Check out how my first attempt at crackle painting with Elmer's glue turned out. This was an idea I found on Pinterest (of course).

When we moved into this house, the bathroom had this HUGE vanity. It was a very dark wood and since it is an interior room I really wanted to brighten it up. We painted it white - almost everything in the room. It was bright, but lacked personality so now - about three years later - I decided to try again. I wanted to bring in my favorite color scheme (blue and brown).
I had read that you paint your base coat (in my case brown). Then put Elmer's glue on it before painting the top color. I really had no idea how much glue I needed...
I may or may not have raced to find the glue before another lady at the store who was also telling her kids she needed a lot of glue!
Okay, I was nervous about I just tried it on a door first with a light coat of glue. Cracks were too small - like slivers. Read some more online and realized I needed A LOT of glue for bigger cracks.
So I really smeared it on...then you wait until your glue gets tacky.
Paint your top-coat on and TADA! You have the crackle effect.

Lessons learned:
I didn't need as much glue as I thought. I bought 9 bottles of 7 oz. glue (I saved the other lady 3) and I only used 4 1/2.
Wait for it...I was a little nervous at first. After it was completely dry, I loved the results.
If you try this on a vertical surface (like the sides of my vanity), you will not be able to use as much glue. It will slide.
Fortunately for us, one of the sliding spots was right where a hinge goes and the other is on the side of the vanity no one can see.
Okay on to some exciting news - TPT and TN are having some great sales and Kristi and I joined in. You will be able to get 30% off of our products over the next few days.


Enjoy your Thanksgiving break!


Sunday, November 18, 2012

Writer's Eye and Thanksgiving

So, I found this cute writer's eye that I have put up in my room.  I found it at:
I was wondering if anyone else uses something like this as well and how are you using it?  I know that Crystal was talking about making goals each week for the students and putting his/her name on a post it note by the one that they should be working on for the week.  I plan on doing this and was also curious how others may use it. 
Here are some more pictures of our turkeys that we made last week:

We have 2 days this week and then have our Thanksgiving break.  Our school has a neat Grandparent's day program on Tuesday.  The grandparents come into our rooms in the afternoon for a little while and then go to the gym where the students put on a Thanksgiving musical program.  It is a neat thing that we have done for years at our school.  How long do you have before your Thanksgiving break and what all do you do in your classroom for the holiday?
I will be looking forward to hearing some of your ideas on writer's eyes and to hear how you spend your days in the classroom before the holiday. 
Hope all of you have a great Thanksgiving break!  Kristi 

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Action Words - Verbs - Kagan Style

How many of you have these books in your school library?

Well, let me tell you...a couple of summers ago, I spent a lot of time copying, cutting, and laminating. Then I stashed the gems I made away in the corresponding math or reading unit to supplement our curriculum.

My classroom is not a "total Kagan" room with students sitting in teams, but I do enjoy throwing in some Kagan structures. The way that I do this is by having students assigned to a "shoulder buddy" and a "team." I use the shoulder buddies for all partner work or sharing during lessons. The students know who is on their team and I will simply say, "Get with your team," to quickly transition to group activities.

This week as verbs came up in our reading curriculum, I was excited to see my ready-made Quiz, Quiz, Trade cards taken from the Balanced Literacy book above. I knew the kids would LOVE it. The students carry cards with verbs on them as they mingle throughout the room. When they pair up, they have to act out each other's verb.

Fun for the kids -- and easy for me. You can't beat that!

Hope you're having a great week!


Saturday, November 10, 2012

Our Talking Turkeys

Boy did that election wear me out!  LOL!  We did have a fun time with it.  It is funny how those little things can make you so tired.  Then to top it off, Crystal decided that we needed to get our bulletin board changed and paint turkeys....what???  I was already tired... granted the craft of the talking turkeys she found was very cute, but the thought of another project and a painting project at that made me even more tired.   
She found it at:

I was actually able to talk her out of painting the entire thing (I think she was tired too after the election, so agreed with me about not using paint on all of it LOL!) and using crayons on some of the parts.  They turned out cute and the kids had fun doing them.  Sorry that the pics aren't too clear, I will try to get better ones to post this week.  Like I said, I was tired and took them and didn't really take a glance at them until I got home.  That's when I noticed that they are a little hard to see :-(.

Hope all of you have a great weekend!  I plan to get some much needed rest!  :-)  Kristi

Thursday, November 8, 2012

And the Winner is...

The results are in...
...and the winner is...
The kids took this election so seriously. It was so stinken' cute! Here's some pictures:
Isn't our voting booth cute...and private? We had an awesome K teacher bring in the decorations for us! That is a blank ballot my kiddo is holding up because, of course, we would never tell who we voted for. :-)

Our election workers took their job very seriously. They checked in each voter and gave them an "I VOTED" sticker when they were finished.

We even had a line for voting because this had to be as realistic as possible - or maybe it was because Kristi kept shoving sending kids out the door so we could finish voting before our specials. Granted I did leave her in the "party room" with ALL of our students so I could maintain the integrity of the election.

And just for giggles...we were searching the room for things that were taller than us and I had one little sweetie draw GOD. Thought it was cute -- and true. He's pretty big alright! ;-)

Have a happy Friday! We're in no kiddos tomorrow.


Saturday, November 3, 2012


The kids are so excited about voting next week for their favorite animal.  Most of them have already decided on who they want to win and who they will be casting their vote for next week.  It is so cute to see them because they are taking it so seriously.  In fact, this week, Crystal had one of her students ask her what they should wear on the day that they are going to vote.  LOL! 

We have it all planned out for Nov. 6.  One of our Kindergarten teachers was so nice to let us borrow her patriotic tablecloths which we will decorate a cubby desk and this will be where they will vote.  There will be 2 students that are in charge of marking off the names as students finish voting.  We have a red voting box where they will place his/her ballot when done voting.  One of our 2nd grade teachers found some old I voted stickers that came in one of her scholastic book orders and she gave them to us.  Now, we will have stickers for them after they vote.  WOW!  It is really nice to work with a group of teachers that are always willing to help out! 

We decided that while they are voting, we would be in one room having an election party.  The students will enjoy cookies and we will all watch a video on the animals that are the candidates for this animal election!  We will post some pictures of the kids voting later next week! 

Have a great weekend!  Kristi

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