Teacher Appreciation Blog Hop Winners (and a Smartboard game for you)!

Thank you all for participating in our blog hop.

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We had over 11,000 entries! Wow, that is truly an amazing number of entries. Our three lucky winners have been pulled, and I’m thrilled to announce them!

Number 1 Prize, winner of the gift card package, is . . .

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Congratulations Linda K!

Number 2 Prize, the winner of the customized room theme plus great beginning of the year activities . . .

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Congrats Emma!

Number 3 prize winner, the winner of their choice of an item from each blog hop sponsor’s store . . .

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Congrats Karyn W.!

Congratulations to all three winners!  I hope you all feel like winners with all the fantastic free items you were able to collect while hopping through our blogs!

My current fan freebie is up on my Facebook page.  If you downloaded it, you know it is an end of the year game called “Hang Ten” where the children practice making tens.

hang ten smartboard

I converted that game into a Smartboard game and played it on Friday with my kids.

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It’s played the same, but instead of partners playing against each other, we play it as team one against team two.  It’s a great way to introduce the game and be sure that everybody understands the rules, and it gave me a chance to see who understood the concept of adding to or subtracting from to make 10.  My kids loved the game and begged me to play again, but we ran out of time, so we’ll play again this week.

If you have a Smartboard and would like this game, you can download it by clicking on the picture below.  Enjoy!

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click here for free Smartboard Notebook file of this game.

Enjoy your week, everyone!  How many days do you have left?  We’re counting down now.  We have 13.5 school days left!


The Saturday Roundup!

There are so many awesome freebies that are offered on Saturday that you may not be aware of,  so I have decided to do a Saturday roundup for you all.

Before I get to that, though, let me tell you about my new resource that I am super-excited about!  This time of the year, as you well know, the kids start getting spring fever, and frankly, so do I.  I have always found my spring centers to be, well, not as inspiring or as exciting as my fall and winter centers.  When I pulled out my old, ragged, broken-down spring box this year to clean it out, I wound up throwing 99% of it away.   It left me with one nice art center activity, making a spring tree.  Hmm, not good.   So I have finally been working on making some fresh, new centers for spring.  The first one I have completed is my Mixed Operation Addition and Subtraction:  The Gnome Knows.

front cover gnome

Perfect spring center — gnome, toadstool, rain. Yep, it must be spring!

I found this clipart from Ninja Girl that I fell in love with, and I knew, after checking some papers the children have done, that some of my kids need to practice LOOKING AT THE SIGN FIRST BEFORE SOLVING A PROBLEM — you know how you can tell when they didn’t look at the sign first — and the whole center came together in two days.  Love when that happens!

Here’s a few photos of the finished center.  I purposely made the + or – sign in a smaller font and red so the children would have to look at the sign closely in order to solve the problem.  I also only used sums/differences from 7 to 18 because at this point, most of the children have memorized sums/differences less than 5.  I guess I could have included 6, but I don’t like having an odd number of things.  It upsets the balance.  Yeah, I’m weird like that.

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The complete center set up on my side chalkboard. I used the front cover as a center header. Brilliant and it only took me 26 years
to come up with that idea!

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A closer view of one of the toadstools and gnomes.

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And another toadstool and gnomes

Obviously, the objective is to correctly add or subtract and get the gnome out of the rain by placing him under the correct toadstool.

To kick off my Saturday roundup, I have the worksheet I included in this packet as a freebie for you.  Of course, I hope you purchase the center to go with the worksheet, but it can stand on its own as an assessment or practice sheet.  Enjoy!

gnome freebie

Click here to download this freebie

Now,  for the rest of the Saturday roundup!  First up is Primary Paradise!  After taking Easter weekend off,  she’s back with her Top Five Freebies of the week!  Visit Martha’s blog to see what she has this week.


Click here to visit Primary Paradise and see her top five freebies of the week.

After that, you will want to visit An Educator’s Life for Created by Mr. Hughes’ Share the Wealth linky party.

Share the Wealth-April 6th- Freebie Linky

And finally, while not  technically a freebie, there is a huge blog linky party going on with The Reading Olympians.  There is also a rafflecopter giveaway with it.  You might want to check that out.


Click here to learn about the Pass the Torch linky giveaway.

And one last site I just found.  It is especially appropriate in the month of April!


Find this freebie and others at Daily Autism Freebies! Click the picture to visit and explore the blog.

It’s so quite at my house right now.  My hubby is away for the weekend.  My baby girl is away at Girl Scout camp for the weekend, and my son, after running in the Race for Grace (local fundraiser for Cancer Research) has headed down to the Gathering of Catholic Men.  So it’s just me and the snoring dog and the two cats at the moment.  Ahhh.  I love my family, but a day of silence is not something that I get too often.  So I’m off to take a bath and do some creating.  I still need to make a literacy spring center for my classroom!    Enjoy your day!

Numbers and Operations in Base 10 Flash Freebie is ON!

** UPDATE to the update**  The flash freebie is over, as is the half-off sale.  But, since I see new pins today, for the next four days, I am knocking $2.00 off the regular price of $5.00.  So you can get this item for only $3.00 from now until Saturday, March 16 until 11:59 PM EST.

UPDATE**The Flash Freebie has ended!  If you missed it, you can still get this item 50% off the regular price for the rest of the evening until tomorrow morning.**

From now until 6:30 PM EST, my newest product, Numbers and Operations in Base 10 Common Core Braintwisters;  Springy Thingies will be FREE!  Click the picture below to claim yours from my TPT store.

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Click the pic to download your flash freebie!

Hope you get yours!

New Fan Freebie Up on Facebook!

In case you don’t follow my Facebook page, I just wanted to let you know I

posted a new Fan Freebie.

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Click here visit my Facebook page and claim your freebie. Be sure to click on the Free for Fans Only Tab!

It’s a sample page from the newest resource I’m working on using the Numbers and Operations  in Base Ten standards 1.NBT.1 and 1.NBT.5.  I hope you and your students enjoy it.  When I finish the product later today,  look for a flash freebie on the product!  I’ll be sure to let you know here and on Facebook.

Also, don’t forgot our blog hop!  It is still going on all this week, so if you haven’t followed the rainbow buttons, be sure to do so this week.  Click the link below to see the original post and start your hop!


Click here to view the original post and start your hop around the rainbow trail to TPT gold – a chance to win a $100.00 TPT gift certificate!

Enjoy your shortened Sunday!

Callum’s Addition Pyramid


Adding basic facts is too easy! Can we try the hard level?

Today during Pickles and Ketchup time, a group of my students were using the SMARTBoard to play Callum’s Addition Pyramid.  If you don’t know about this resource, you’ve got to check it out!  Click on the picture to visit the site.

It’s an addition game with three levels of play, easy, medium, or hard.  After each turn, you can choose which level you want to play.  Easy is basic facts, and typically, my kids start there.  But then they get adventurous and want to try medium and hard.

Today, about 5 of my kids decided to play on the hard level, and it was so cool to watch the different ways they tried to figure 17+19.  One boy was trying to count on his fingers.  One of my girls got out the cubes.  Ben realized counting on his fingers wasn’t going to work, so he started helping Jules count cubes.  In the meantime, Alaina and Shelby decided to use the number line above the chalkboard.  It only goes to 30, but Alaina was finally the one who came up with the answer using the number line!  Anyway, the game is really cool and easy for the kids to get the hang of.  Try it out!

There’s a really cool giveaway going on at Rockin’ Teacher Materials.  Hilary has 6 flash drives to giveaway, one at each grade level, loaded with teacher materials donated from TPT members.  Can you imagine?  A flash drive full of resources at your fingertips!  Click on the picture below to visit Hilary’s blog and sign up for her giveaway.   It ends Sunday, so go now!

Good luck!

Preparing for January

I hope of you have had a peaceful and restful winter break so far.  We had an excellent Christmas and are now enjoying the lull between Christmas and New Year’s with lots of sleeping in, visiting family, and of course, shopping!  Those gift cards don’t spend themselves,  you know? 

In between all the fun, I’ve been thinking about teaching in January.  I’ve developed 4 new eSources (my newly coined name for my digital resources; how do you like it?)  Funny story about eSources — it started out as a typo when I left the “r” off  “resource.”  I looked at it and thought, esource, huh.  Let’s spell it eSource and it makes sense.

Anyways, back to my eSources.  Two are winter math games including adding, subtracting, and place value, January Roll and Cover with Mike the Moose


and Penguin Push


I also added a long and short O sorting activity to complement my other long and short vowel sorting packets, Short I and Short E.  The remaining vowels will be added — someday.


And finally, I added a Martin Luther King integrated Esource packet.


Feel free to click on any picture above to visit my TPT store and explore these products further.

Finally, I have a quick and easy MLK freebie for you.  It’s a dove of peace made out of paper plates.  I’ve been doing this activity along with MLK for years in my classroom.  It makes a nice wall dsiplay when I pair it with the children’s writings on what they think would make the world a better place today.


If you click on the picture, it will take you to a page with the PDF on it.  Open the PDF for directions and a step-by-step pictorial tutorial for you.

Enjoy and have a very Happy New Year!

Schedule Disruption Survival Plan

Before I begin this post, I must make a disclaimer:  I really do love the holiday season.  I love the traditions that surround Christmas, the concerts, the crafts, the Santa’s Shops.  I really do.  BUT. . .

Oh my, how they disrupt a daily schedule, and if you teach young children, you know…know…KNOW what a disrupted schedule means…hyper-vigilence on your part and ENGAGING and EXCITING activites to keep them focused.

This week we have — Monday, dress rehersal for Christmas play.  Monday night, Christmas play, Tuesday afternoon  (all afternoon) Santa’s Helper’s Craft  Day,  Wednesday morning, mass, Wednesday afternoon, Santa’s Secret Shop, and Friday, regulary scheduled superstar student guest reader.  That’s a lot of schedule disruption.

So what’s a teacher to do?  Pull out the big guns!  Pull out those extra special fun learning games to keep everyone involved.  I’ve got two I’ve been saving… one I created just yesterday, and one I created about a month ago.  In math, we’ve been learning addition strategies, so I created this game.

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I’m using one paper dice with numbers on it and one dotted dice.  The idea is the children will practice counting on from the numbered die  instead of counting each dot on both dice.  Most of my kids are getting this concept, but I still notice some putting up fingers for both numbers when adding.  Hopefully, playing this game will help that concept sink in for a few more.  Ive also differentiated the resource by including number dice from 1-6 and 7-12.  This will give you sums to 12 or sums to 18, depending on which die you use with your dotted dice.  This resource can also be used to reinforce subtracting from the bigger number.  Don’t you just love a versatile resource?

You can claim this FREEBIE from my TPT store by clicking on the picture above.  For our public school friends who may not be able to race to Bethlehem, I created an alternate version:Race to North POle coverjpg_Page1

Same concept as above, but you’re racing to the North Pole.  Click on the picture above to grab this FREEBIE from my TPT store.

The other game I’ve been saving for math class is Elf Toss.

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This is a fun and fast-paced game that is similar to bump, but I’ve added my own unique twist to it.  It also includes worksheets that I can use as homework this work.  So math is taken care of for this week!

In language arts, I will be ditching the reading series for this week — but not the reading series skills!  This is the week I will pull out my stories of celebrating the holidays around the world.  I have a wonderful SMARTBoard presentation that I found on SMART Exchange.  If you’ve never looked there, you should check it out.  I use various literature resources and crafts and interactive learning activities to illustrate how Christmas is celebrated in other countries.

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In addition, I will be using my Bearly Orderly resource with the whole group and with small groups.  In addition to alphabetical order, we will be practicing phonics and writing skills.

Because of our crazy schedule this week, we probably won’t have time to do more than focus on math and Language Arts until at least Thursday.  I think I’ve got the first three days of the week covered pretty well with my “Schedule Disruption Surivival Plan.”  How do you get through weeks like this?