Thursday, July 31, 2014

Hello, fellow teachers!

I can hear the clock ticking...summer is fading and back-to-school is creeping in!

I usually start to get a little excited this time of year. Sure, I'll miss the quality time I've had with my children, but I look forward to a more structured schedule and meeting the kids I'll spend the next 9 months inspiring!

If you're like me, you teach English, Language Arts, Reading, Social Studies or at least one of these! Please look through my products and see if there is anything that could make your life easier or more fun. If there is something you'd like to see, I can probably find it in my archives or make it happen!

I'd like to share and learn what worked and didn't work in my class this year. I'm currently teaching 5th grade ELAR/SS on an intermediate campus, in a 90 minute block. I have LEP and SpEd students for which to differentiate. I hope we can work together to teach each other and grow!

Click on the link below for a freebie! Thanks for taking the time to check me out!

Happy Teaching!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

A Little Summer-Planning Allows You to Sit Back and Watch Your Classroom Run Itself!

Getting some rest?

Planning your classroom in your mind? I know I do…every summer!

I learn something new every year. I feel like experience helps me “tweak” to make everything run more smoothly with each, new year.

I plan to use several things this year that will make my classroom run itself, like an automatic! In addition to utilizing student notebooks to house all of their writing, grammar, vocabulary, etc., I have decided that using literacy stations with a timer is the best way to manage my classroom. Students work alone or with a partner on student-centered, enrichment (GT), writing, reading, spelling, etc. activities while I conference with each student or work with a small group on areas of improvement. It works like a well-oiled machine!

Most of my career has been focused on struggling readers from a low socioeconomic background and English Language Learners. Understanding that limited vocabulary, fluency, and background knowledge are areas to address with these students is key. Finding the time in the day to work with these students means the rest of the class needs to be self-sufficient. Literacy work stations is the answer to this problem for me. All I have to do is push START, and it will take off!

Contact me if you have any questions about how to incorporate work-stations in your classroom or you'd like to share ideas! Check out my shop/store on Teachers-Pay-Teachers & Teachers Notebook for products that can help you get started. ‘No sense in reinventing the wheel!




Happy Teaching!


Sunday, April 7, 2013

April Showers Bring May Wow-ers!


I’m thinking I’ll have my students write poems this month. With the focus on how pretty it looks and feels outside, this should be an easy enough inspiration! I’ll post their poems on large flower, umbrella, cloud, butterfly, or tree templates. Hanging them from string around the room or in the hall for Spring Open House would decorate the room nicely. Any suggestions?

I’ve done a poem before where the students fill in the blanks with what they see, hear, smell, etc. Then, I cut off (or fold back) the beginning part of the sentence to make it sound more like poetry than a narrative.

I see…_____________________________________

I hear…____________________________________

I smell…____________________________________

I feel…_____________________________________

I touch…____________________________________

I taste…____________________________________

‘Just a fun idea. This time of year is one of my favorites! Visit my Teacher’s Notebook shop and/or Teachers-Pay-Teachers shop (look on the right side of my blog for a link to these) for more ideas.

*I’m running a Spring into Spring 15% off sale on both sites!!!*

Wednesday, March 13, 2013



March Madness. Spring Break. Easter. What else does March 2013 have in store for us???

I’ve been trying to come up with simple ways to cover grammar that aren’t too long and arduous. I’ve included two worksheets on “Teachers Pay Teachers” and “Teacher’s Notebook”. Use these for practice at home or in a station/center to assess your students’ understanding. Right now, my school is covering coordinating and subordinating conjunctions in compound and complex sentences. I also saw the need to review parts of speech…often!So, I made a shapes and color-coded practice sheet for parts of speech. Each is only .99!

On T-P-T:

Conjunctions: Hooking Together Clauses:

Shape and Color-Coded Weekly Grammar Homework:

On T.N.:

Conjunctions: Hooking Together Clauses:

Shape and Color-Coded Weekly Grammar Homework:

Enjoy your fun-filled, busy MARCH!

Happy Teaching!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

February: The Month of Love


We’re now in February. The month of love. Almost as soon as we’ve made our resolutions, we’re tested to keep them…

We love the Super Bowl. We love Mardi Gras. We love chocolate and over-indulging. After we go a little overboard, we have to reel ourselves back in…

I’ve created a fun little lesson you can do with your kids. My students loved them! After they’ve written their creative, unique Diamante poems, cut them out, glue them onto colored paper and hang them from string. Let their little diamonds shine!

On TpT:

On T.N.:

Have fun and enjoy!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Story Time

Whether you’re introducing the elements of a short story for the first time, or you need to review plot structure to analyze a novel, it’s nice to have a graphic organizer and ready-made analysis sheets to distribute to your students. I’ve added an item to both Teacher’s Notebook and Teachers Pay Teachers that can make this process more fun for you and your students.

If you have English Language Learners or Special Education students, having a mental model for them to organize their thoughts, makes things easier for them.

Check it out!

On T.N.: ' target=_blank>Character, Setting, & Plot

On T-p-T: Character, Setting, & Plot

Happy Teaching! :)

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Happy New Year!!!


2012 was a great year. I learned a lot about things that work and things that don’t. I decided to make things easier on myself (and consequently more fun for the kids), by implementing more technology in my teaching! It was scary at first, but I realized it really saves time and it’s more engaging for them.

First of all, rather than paper journals, the kids are using “Kid Blog” to record their thoughts and feelings. Let’s face it. Blogging is the new journaling anyway.

Next, I’ve been using for my students to practice and take their spelling tests. There are lots of activities they can do on “Spelling City” to learn the words – meaning, pronunciation AND spelling. It’s fun for them and a quick and easy grade for me!

Last (but not least), I have been allowing my students time to practice their typing skills on “Type to Learn”. They need practice typing. Too many of them STILL hunt and peck on the keyboard! AHHHH!!!!

I hope 2013 brings lots of excitement and wonder into your classrooms and your hearts. We’re starting our research projects. So be looking for some research lessons soon. In the meantime, check out a figurative language lesson, get your students’ papers organized into a ELAR notebook, or get ideas on how to use literacy stations by going to:

Teacher’s-Pay-Teacher’s Store:


Teacher’s Notebook Shop:

I have New Year’s Sales going on NOW!!!!



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