Friday, October 31, 2014

Five for Friday!

Happy Halloween! 

Here is how we celebrated Halloween this week:

Engagement Photos
We finally received some of our engagement photos! I was so terribly excited! 

To view more engagement photos click HERE.

Pumpkin Lifecycle Activity

We studied the lifecycle of a pumpkin early in the week.
Pumpkin Project

We conducted the "Pumpkin Project" using the scientific method. Students worked in groups of two and three.  I cut off the top of the pumpkin (before school) and then the students felt the pulp and seeds inside. Then, they poured in three cups of soil and two cups of water. Last, we took our pumpkins and put them in the sunlight outside. We will continue to monitor our pumpkins' growth over the next few weeks! You can find the "Pumpkin Project" HERE.

I LOVE Fall 

I LOVE fall weather and the changing of the leaves. It's cool, beautiful, and refreshing! Just love it. 

Decorate a pumpkin contest! 

This year I decided to hold a pumpkin decorating contest. I have twenty kids, so I put them into ten groups of two. Each group had a pumpkin to decorate using paint, GLITTER (a teacher's nightmare), cotton balls, pom-poms, eyeball stick ons, markers, crayons, etc. I wanted to see them collaborate and work with their partners to come up with something great. On Halloween day, I set the ten pumpkins outside our door on a table. I numbered them 1-10. Then I put stickies, pencils, and a bucket for students to come by and vote. My kids got a real kick out of this. It was a huge hit! 

Students working together to decorate their pumpkins.


Spiderman and Spiderwoman

My "SUPER" second grade team!

The most adorable transformer I've ever seen!

Have a SPOOK-TACULAR weekend!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Lessons from Dad

I may be biased, but I believe I have the most kind, loving, and spectacular dad a girl could ever ask for. As my siblings and I were growing up, we always referred to my dad as "Danny Tanner" aka Bob Saget from the hit TV show, "Full House".

My dad and Danny Tanner are two of the same, they both have "the nose" and the "life lessons".

See the striking resemblance?
My Dad

Danny Tanner

This post is dedicated to my father who taught me important life lessons.

1. Less is MORE.

2. Be a GOOD listener.

3. SAVE 20% percent.

4. Do what you LOVE.

5. Complain LESS.

6. Be KIND.

7. Make each day a MASTERPIECE.

Thank you Daddio for the life lessons.

Love you always. XO


Friday, October 10, 2014

Five for Friday!

Happy Friday! 

Whew, this week flew by! 

I blinked and suddenly it was Friday.

Maybe it was because we were so busy learning and having fun.

Here's what our class was up to this past week. 

To learn more about Step Up to Writing, click here.
On Monday, my school brought in a presenter who gave us strategies and ideas on how to use the program, Step Up to Writing. 

Example: Three Part Sentence Strategy with PWIM

PWIM: Label the picture.

Three Part Sentence: The girl walked through the pumpkin patch.

 The girl         walked        through the pumpkin patch
(who or what? )  (action)               ( finish the thought)

Peer teaching! What a BEAUTIFUL sight!
Students helping one another during our math lesson over regrouping.
Peer teaching? I've never tried it...but it's GENIUS.

I was teaching a challenging lesson about regrouping using base ten blocks. By the way, this lesson took three days for my students to master the concept. As I let them do their independent work, I noticed some of my students were struggling. Some of my students finished their work easily, and I had them guide their classmates. 

Yippee for Fall decor! 

Boo! Ready for Halloween!

Our porch is almost set for Fall! Just missing our new burlap wreath!

The Biggest Pumpkin Ever read aloud and pumpkin craft.

We read aloud The Biggest Pumpkin Ever  by Steven Kroll.

After the read aloud, it was time for our pumpkin craft!

Paper plate (1 for each child)
Orange & black paint 
Paint brushes
Green & Orange streamers

Students painting their plate orange for their pumpkin.

Pumpkin with freckles.

Ninja pumpkin.

Cuddle time

Now it's time to rest with my sweet fur babies. 
Have a super weekend!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

A Cuppa Day

Oh how to start the day off right...a cup-a-joe of course!

I'm a creature of routine and habit. The first thing I do in the morning is grudgingly swipe the "snooze" button on my alarm as my dog, Fitz attacks my face with puppy kisses. At 5:05 a.m. Fitz hears the alarm, and then BOOM, he's on my face.

Time to wake up.


Everyday as in including WEEKENDS.

GRRRR.....(I'm mad about Fitz waking me up...not the puppy kisses!)

However, that's besides the point, I want to share my cup-a-joe.

I'm a simple girl who loves her Folger's Breakfast Blend.
Folgers Breakfast Blend
 Steps to making my favorite cup-a-joe:

  • Step 1: Pour about 6 fluid ounces.

  • Step 2: Put 1 tablespoon of ground Folger's Breakfast Blend.
How to measure the right amount of coffee

  • Step 3: Add a dash of cinnamon.

  • Step 4: Brew the delicious coffee.

  • Step 5: Add a dash of pumpkin spice creamer, a spoonful of hazelnut creamer, and one splenda.

  • Step 6: Enjoy a cup-of- joe and have a fantastic day!

*This post is dedicated to my dear friend, Brecken who gave me inspiration. 

Friday, October 3, 2014

Five for FRIDAY (Actually on a FRIDAY!!)

Yay! I was able to get the post done ON FRIDAY! Wahoo! 
Here is my weekly adventure:

Who doesn't love them some Johnny Appleseed?

 This week we ditched the science curriculum and dove into a Johnny Appleseed thematic unit. You can purchase that unit here. We watched the Johnny Appleseed video on I also showed my kiddos a Johnny Appleseed PowerPoint
downloaded from Smart Exchange. We talked about the life cycle and parts of an apple. On the last day of our unit we sampled three different kinds of apples: honey crisp, red delicious, and granny. We created a bar graph and graphed our favorite apples.

 The kids LOVED it!

 It has been a great activity filled week learning about the wonderful Johnny Appleseed. 

Johnny Appleseed writing craft.
Some of them look a little frightening but for the most part they turned out cute!
apple life cycle 

Author and Illustrator Carolyn Mueller
Our school was able to have the opportunity to have Carolyn Mueller come to our school to give a presentation. Mueller is a zoo keeper at the St. Louis Zoo. She has written a few stories including Bubbles the Dwarf Zebu and Lily a True Story of Courage in the Joplin Tornado.
My students were so excited to listen and watch her presentation about her job and her books. She explained the four main necessities animals need: food, water, shelter, and entertainment.

The students were so excited they could hardly contain themselves. The best part of the presentation was yet to come...

Mueller decided to show our kids a mama llama giving birth to her child. It was a video and it was AWESOME. All you see is a baby llama plopping out behind the mama and being dropped on it's head.

One of my students says, "Whoa, that just fell out of her butt!". My principal about died from a case of embarrassment. 

Absolutely hilarious. It couldn't have been any more epic.

However, I decided to purchase two of the books. Lily a True Story of Courage in the Joplin Tornado is a special book to people like me who live near the Joplin area. We all remember the day of the tornado, and it's great to see something positive brought out of something so catastrophic. 

New books! Bubbles the Dwarf Zebu and Lily a True Story of Courage in the Joplin Tornado

*You can learn more about Carolyn Mueller and her beautiful books on her website.

How about them ROYALS?
Now, do I watch Royals baseball all the time? 

Heck no. I really don't like baseball...

 However, the Royals (my home team) made it to post season! The last time they made it to the post season was 29 years ago...

The Royals played the Oakland A's in an epic match where the Royals would get behind and then find themselves rallying to stay in the ball game. The game nearly lasted five hours. They played twelve innings. And they pulled off an incredible WIN. 

They are advancing to the series!

That's a big deal and something to celebrate! 

Making pasta sauce using home grown tomatoes!
It's a miracle. 

I didn't kill a plant. I actually was able to grow my OWN tomatoes.Who knew that such a simple thing such as gardening could be so fulfilling?

My future hubby and I decided to make pasta sauce using our tomatoes. We sauteed garlic, onions, and basil. Then we chopped the tomatoes and added them to the pan full of deliciousness. Then, my future hubby did something AWFUL. He added heavy cream and butter... Does he realize I can't say NO and that this will not be good for my thighs? 

But oh was AMAZING.  

Cosmic Kids Yoga

Cosmic Kids Yoga is simply AMAZING. 

 I let my students do an episode of Cosmic Kids Yoga every Friday morning. Fridays are always a little hectic and this helps us start our day off calmly. 

The lady in the video walks the kids through a story while involving them in many yoga poses.  The lady has a British accent and she always looks up to the sun and says, "Hello Sun!". The students repeat it and they say it with an accent. It's adorable and the kids enjoy the activity. 

My students doing the "Parsnip the Cat" episode.
Type in "Cosmic Kids Yoga" on YouTube and a list of her videos will pop up. Trust me, you'll love them!

Happy Weekend! :)