Monday, October 31, 2016

Fall Parties!

Today, we had our Fall Party at the end of the day.  The kids had a lot of fun.  They started off by putting their hands into some boxes and feeling inside of them.  One was supposed to be eyeballs and it had watermelon in it and another one was supposed to be hair and it had hay in it.  Some of their facial expressions when feeling some of the stuff was just priceless.  

Then they got to eat a lot of yummy treats, including dirt and worms (chocolate pudding, oreos and gummy worms).  They had a lot of fun!

 I hope you had a great day!

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Wisdom for Wednesday-Drifting Away

Welcome to this week's:

Isn't this just the cutest picture?  I know you are probably thinking what does this have to do about any type of wisdom??  I've seen lots of pictures of sea otters like this and I was curious why they hold hands so I looked it up.  It says that they will hold hands while they sleep so that they don't drift away from each other. It made me think about how we need to be holding on tight every day to God just like this so that we don't drift away from him.  When we drift away from God it is usually a slow and steady process and doesn't just happen over night.  We may at some point realize that we have been pushing God away instead of running toward him and holding on tightly to him.  So when I see these cute creatures it reminds me that I need to be holding on tightly to God and his word so that I don't drift away from him at any time.  

Have a great day!

Monday, October 24, 2016

Parent Teacher Conferences Week

This week will be our first parent teacher conferences for the year.  In the past I had found some neat ideas to add to conferences.  The first one that I liked, I found at What the Teacher Wants.  It is a kid's personal grade card.  I found it very interesting to see how each kid felt they were doing in a variety of areas.  Here is what it looks like:
The second thing that I found that I liked was just something to give out to the parents at the conferences.  It gives a lot of websites that the kids can go to and work on various academic areas.  I found this very helpful especially since we are living in a technology world.  I found this at Mandy's Tips for Teachers:
It also includes websites to help with math, spelling and grammar.  It is a great resource.
How do you do your conferences and have you added anything that you found helpful to your parent teacher conferences?  I would love to hear about them. 
Hope you have a great day!

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Five for...Well, Sunday!

Good morning!

We had a short school week last week with an inservice on Friday and then we will have another short week this week with PT comp day on Friday. 

Anybody else feel like short weeks are longer??? 

I don't know if it is because I'm trying to cram so much in or what the deal is, but I'm always completely confused what the day it actually is (my kiddos corrected me at least five times on Thursday for saying Friday) and completely exhausted by the end of the week! Ha!

Anyway, let's jump in to this week's photos for the Five for Friday linky from Kacey at Doodlebugs Teaching.


Last week, we reviewed telling time to the hour and half-hour. This week, we'll work on telling time to the five minutes. Games and practice pages from our Telling Time Mega Pack make planning easy! :-)


I also introduced the kids to Showbie this week for the first time. I love this app! While I don't go completely paperless in second grade (I think it is still important for them to learn how to WRITE on paper), I do like to put things on Showbie that are good review but simple enough they seem like a waste of copy paper!


Our math games from Dealing with Math Homework from Teacher's Clubhouse are always a hit. We practiced this new one and they loved finding the missing addends!

4 and 5

 Yesterday, was regional cross country for my son and then we rushed back for sub-state volleyball for my daughter (and the team I help coach). My hubby was ready to make a quick wardrobe switch to support them! ;-)

The entire cross country team PR'd! It was great to see them run well. My niece will move on to the state meet next weekend.

The volleyball team won their sub-state tournament, taking their record to 38-2. We will play in the state tournament next weekend. Here's a picture with a bunch of the fans that showed up to cheer us on (my daughter is #14). :-)

Have a blessed Sunday and a great week!

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Wisdom for Wednesday - Strengthen Thou Me!

I just love reading and studying the book of Psalms! There is so much encouragement to be found there.

As you may know, I'm currently attempting to memorize the 119th Psalm, so I am meditating on those verses a lot and our Wisdom post is taken from there. 

This verse was part of the passage I was memorizing last week. 

I was feeling pretty overwhelmed and discouraged about things at work*. I had been working on this passage for a few days when it hit me (call me a slow learner - ha!). God was giving me the encouragement I needed. It was right in front of me the entire week! This verse is the reminder I need that I am not alone and I do not have to "do it" alone. God is with me and He wants to be my strength!

I will love thee, O LORD, my strength. The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower.
Psalm 18:1-2

*PRAISE - We were finally able to hire a special needs para to help with our caseload and more help is on the way! The last two days have been so much better for my students and me!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Sight Word Fun!

We have been drilling our first 9 weeks sight words and I'm happy to say that the majority of my students passed this 9 weeks!  YAY!  They were even more excited because my co-teacher found these cool pinwheels on clearance at Wal-Mart.  If they could read all of their sight words in 2 1/2 minutes then they earned one of the pinwheels.  You would have thought that they had got a million dollars.  They were thrilled and mesmerized by these pinwheels.  

They were so excited about these things!  Now, to figure out what they can earn for the 2nd nine weeks sight words.  Any ideas?

Have a great day!

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Five for Friday!

Woohoo! It's Saturday and I am NOT at a volleyball tournament for the first time since August. Don't misunderstand! I love coaching and I love tournaments, but I am so ready for a free Saturday.

Speaking of volleyball, that leads me to my first picture for today's Five for Friday!


Yep, that's us. Ranked #4 in the state! Woohoo!

Last year, we made it to state and didn't play well. Our goal this year is to make it and COMPETE. Sub-state is next Saturday, and if we win, we will play in the state tournament the next weekend.


A before picture would have made this so much better...but I'll try to explain. This is my "command center" that sits on my kitchen counter (you can read all about it here). 

Do you see how thin the "To File" folder is? I usually file on long breaks from school, think Spring Break, Christmas Break, Summer Break, etc. Well, that file was busting at the seams.

An unexpected day off due to a power outage was the perfect opportunity to take care of that. Guess what? I hadn't filed since Spring Break! Insert embarrassed face emoji here. I blame the shoulder surgery this summer.


Disclaimer: These next two pictures are completely unflattering, but well, let's just be real.

Coaching volleyball has made it hard to watch my son run Cross Country, but I was finally able to make it to a meet this week. He ran his fastest time since blowing out his knee his freshman year, so I was pretty excited to be there.

So excited I faked death.

Not really.

We have had some major tech issues this year as we are switching tech providers. It has been a bit frustrating for all of us, so my principal sent out this video (hilarious!) and encouraged us to all share our pictures.
P.S. My son was too embarrassed to take it. LOL!


This guy was so excited about the shed he built during "Fun Friday" (with one hand) that he asked me to take a picture. Think indoor recess for the kiddos who complete all their work and behave well during the week. I even broke out the paints this week, so they were super excited. :-)


I'm struggling a bit this year, so when I saw this it just resonated with me. Several special needs students moved into our small district this year, and we are so understaffed. We are slowly finding people willing to make the drive to our rural schools, but these first couple months of school have been challenging in a way that I just cannot fully describe. Add to that the normal "busyness" of teaching, coaching, and completing the final steps in the publication process of my book. This quote just reminds me to keep looking up and takes me back to "my mantra" - Embrace the Day!

Thanks again to Kacey for this fun linky!

Here's wishing you a restful weekend!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Wisdom for Wednesday-Laughter

Welcome to another week of:

Life is hard, serious and it brings a lot of stress on a day to day basis.  I believe that God didn't intend for our days to be like that.  In fact, the bible clearly states that having a merry heart is good for us. 

 Proverbs 17:22 A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.

I think God wants us to have laughter and joy on a daily basis.  I'm sure you have seen this video before, but when I watched it, I thought this is what I need every day.  Something simple that makes me just laugh for a little bit.  Instead of always taking life so serious, I need to take time and enjoy it and add laughter every day just like this lady in the video.

Have a great day and I hope you find some time to laugh a little bit!

Monday, October 10, 2016

Helpful Art Drawing Website

If you are anything like me, when it comes to arts and crafts....I am not good at all at it!  I have never been good at art.  In fact, I still remember in 3rd grade when we had art class and I did a drawing.  I have to say that I thought I had done a pretty good job on it and I had worked really hard on it.  When I got it back from the art teacher there was a big F on the back of it.  :-(  I guess it wasn't that good since I got a failing grade on it.  No matter how hard I try at it, I'm just not good at it.  

I was thrilled when my co-teacher introduced me to Art hub for kids. He shows kids how to draw a variety of things step by step.  The kids love it when we do his drawings.  I have been trying to do at least one a week in their writing journals and then they write a story about his/her drawing.  If you are like me and have a hard time with art, check it out.  I love it!

Have a great day!  

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Wisdom for Wednesday - Memorizing Scripture

Good morning!

I'm up early after a late night of volleyball and in need of some energy! It was a fun night though. The head coach reached his 500th career win and our varsity team (29-2) took first place in league play. We will have our league tournament on Saturday, one more outing on the 18th, and then it is GO time. As in "go" to state, I'm hoping! :-) The JV/C teams that I coach are 21-5 so we are having a successful and fun year. 

Anyway, I know you are probably not here to read about volleyball so let's get to the Wisdom!

This week's Wisdom comes straight from the source (and is probably familiar to you):

I know I've had this verse memorized for years. 
And I have memorized many short verses and passages over the years. 

This year has been different. 

The FB group Teachers in the Word put out a prayer journal for this school year centered around Psalm 119. The chapter is broken down into 4 verses each week in the journal. 
Do you know where this is headed? 

Yes, I determined in my heart to memorize the verses!

All 176 verses! Yikes!

Am I crazy? Maybe.

But I can tell you that after six weeks and 24 verses, I have meditated more on Scripture than I have in years! 

It has given me a new love and appreciation for God's Word. It has given me a determination to keep His Word, to seek Him with my WHOLE heart, and so much more. It has helped me stay positive at the beginning of a school year that has not started so positive. It has given me something to "do" when I am having trouble sleeping, riding in the car, or just killing time somewhere. It has changed me--which is exactly what God's Word will do when we give it the time and attention it deserves.

New to memorizing Scripture? 
Start small and go for it!

It is worth it because…
God's Word Changes Lives!

Monday, October 3, 2016

We Can All Relate!!

Happy Monday!  

This blog is going to be short and sweet today.  I didn't feel good this weekend and it continued today.  We all have been there, the big debate, go and work through it or make those sub plans.  I found a couple of cute sayings on the internet that I feel says it all!

I went and worked through it today and praying that I can sleep it off tonight and can be back to normal tomorrow.

Hope all of you are staying healthy and have a great day!

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Let's Catch Up (Five for Friday style)!

Hey there!

The last couple weeks have been absolutely CRAZY for me between teaching, coaching volleyball (Saturday tournaments every weekend), and this last week's parent teacher conferences. I actually just got home from our JV tournament, so I am about ready to CRASH.

So thankful to Kacey over at Doodlebugs for this linky!

First, my kids are loving these new books we got from Usborne Books. We had a book fair through them last Spring and got a lot of books for our library. Woohoo! These two are easy chapter books for my beginning 2nd graders who have been "dying" to check out chapter books!

Second, I love morning tubs! 
Who knew? 
The creativity and opportunity for socialization before we get down to business is perfect!

Third, when the HEAVY pillows someone gave you work like a weighted blanket for a student who really needs one...BONUS!

Fourth, we are rocking our Daily 5! 
There was one day this week, when I looked around and was just super impressed. 
The read-to-self kiddos were reading. 
The word-working kiddos were working with words. 
The work-on-writing kiddos were writing. 
I literally had to take a moment and soak it in. 
Then I gave them all Super Improver stickers because we have improved so much!

Fifth, we have been talking a lot about this kind of thing at school...teaching independence. 
This sums it up perfectly!

So parents and teachers...teach your kids to be independent! It may not be perfect when they are learning. They may make mistakes. But in the end they will be building confidence and gaining independence to prepare them for LIFE!

Happy weekend!

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