Monday, September 30, 2013

The COOL Water Cycle Song!

Have you heard it?  Do you know what I'm speaking of?  Oh yes, it's the most memorable, most catchy science song on the face of this's "The COOL Water Cycle Song" by Mr. Davies! 

While this is not the "original"'s pretty close...and it has the lyrics typed on top of the video, which I LOVE! 

So today, we started learning about the water cycle.  We took out our boring science books, and instead of simply reading and going over the diagrams, we added in this fun video and then "followed" the cycle with our fingers as it was sung through the song!  So cute, so fun, and my kiddos were singing the song ALL day up until dismissal.  Who could ask for more?!  :)
Following the Water Cycle as it's sung by Mr. Davies in his way COOL Water Cycle Song!

So I hope everyone's having a great beginning of the week, and if you haven't already taught the water cycle yet this year, I hope you'll keep this fun video in the back of your mind to pull out of your bag of tricks when you do begin!  Happy Monday!!!  (PS- Sorry in advance if you listen and the song gets stuck in your head the rest of the night!  Enjoy!!!)

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Are You Ready For Today?! TpT BACK TO SCHOOL SALE & North Texas Blogger Meet-Up!

Busy busy!  Today is going to be such a great day.  Why, you ask?  Only because it's Teachers Pay Teachers' Annual Back to School Sale AND the day of our North Texas Teacher Blogger Meet up!  Woo-Hoo!  Who could ask for more?! 


Look for more pics to come of my fun afternoon in Southlake, TX with fellow bloggers!
(Oh, and PS, I can't tell you how EXCITED I am for my new computer to be able to upload pictures to my blog now!  Woo-Hoo!)

Happy Sunday!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Want to "Excel"?!?

Yes, we talk talk talk about teaching our kiddos technology, but when it comes down to it, I'd really love to see some statistics about teachers' use of technology themselves!  Don't get me wrong, I'm GUILTY, too!  All the time, I think, goodness, I should know how to do this! 

So, what a better way then to ease into technology with one of Groupon's weekend deals!  Have you seen it yet? 

Groupon: From $25 for Online Microsoft Excel Training Course and Test for 1 or 10 people

It's a 12 hour "course" teaching the ins and outs of Excel.  (Yes, THAT Excel...the one that a lot of us know has charts and columns, and such, but not a lot of us use included!)

So click on over and check it out!  What do you have to loose?!  :)   (Hey, you may even get your administrator to make an exception and count those hours as PD, too!)

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Hope or Goal for This School Year?

Yesterday, when I was at my Literacy Cadre meeting, our "leader" asked us to think of a hope or goal for this upcoming school year.  I'll caught me off guard.  I don't quite have my "teacher brain" back yet, and I still am about 65% in summer mode. 

That being said, I do create a goal for each school year.  It's kind of a team thing...we sit down, think, discuss, and come up with one personal goal and one team goal.  So, I guess now's the time to start mulling...

(if my awesomely ghetto computer was working now, I'd upload a cute picture here...but alas, it's not, so this must be an all text post...I apologize up front.)

According to, goals are important because it helps you focus and organize your time and energy.  Basically, setting goals keeps you on track, AND allows you to clearly see your own individual progress!  And, personally, I agree.

Last year, my goal was much more broad.  This year, though, after a day of Literacy Cadre, I think I've figured mine out.  It's something I wanted to start last year and just never took off with it.  It is SENTENCE IMITATING!  Or, at least, a rendition of it!  :)

Here are my steps, (or so I think, so far...), to meeting my goal:

1. Each week, pick one sentence from a book or text that we have read in class. 
2. Copy that sentence either on a large sheet of paper, chart paper, or a sentence strip.  Leave sentence in easily viewable area all week.
3. First day-- read and examine the sentence together as a class.  What do we notice?  What do we like about it?  What makes it great?
4. Second day-- have students reread sentence on their own.  Maybe on a sticky note, have them write an observation, like, want, etc. of their own about the sentence.
5. Third day-- copy the sentence into their writing journals.  ME (the teacher!) point out what is awesome about it!
6. Fourth day-- under the copied sentence in writing journal, first model, then have students independently write their own "imitation" of the sentence.  Pair and share.
7. Fifth day-- go back and reread our "imitation" sentence from the day before.  Edit, revise, or add to.  IF time (and desire), students can come up with another, second, sentence imitation!

So there you have it!  My goal.  Step by step, day by day.  It's definitely going to take some work and effort on my part to remember to designate a few minutes to it each day, but I think it shouldn't be bad and in the end, I know the results will be amazing!  Crossing fingers!  :)

Now you read mine, tell me yours!  Haven't come up with a goal yet?  Maybe it's a big one, or maybe it's more specific like mine?  Either way, I'd love to hear it!  Leave me a comment below, and maybe we can help each other stay accountable this year through!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

What Do Our 21st Century Learners Look Like?

And we're off...
At least I am.  No, school has not officially begun, nor has staff inservice, but I for one, have begun my "back to school" regimen with changing classrooms, redecorating, cleaning, organizing, and most importantly, attending a few various meetings here and there. 

Today I'm off to my Literacy Cadre meeting, however, last week, I attended a new "council" meeting of a technology group our district has just created.  Technology is great, right?  Last summer, I shared various "techie" things I learned at technology workshops, like Alan November

Whereas last year's workshops taught me new, innovative, and specific ways to use technology in the classroom, this meeting last week was more broad discussion...all stemming around the question of how can we meet the needs and truly engage, inspire, and teach our 21st century learners?  In a world of constant information, I'll admit, there are many times I struggle to gain my students' attention on "lessons" that I think are pretty darn good or engaging.  But it's not my thoughts or wants/needs that I teach  to.  So that's the question to be thinking about as we start this year...

This little 5 minute video is oh-so inspiring and thought provoking.  I'd love for you to watch it, think about it, and let me know your thoughts.  What do you do for your 21st century learners?  Are you part of the 14% that let your students create, explore, and examine technology or the 86% that barely do?

Monday, August 5, 2013

A Change In Scenery

Change is good, right?!  Well that's the attitude I'm picking when I'm up on campus in the middle of summer, hauling my classroom belongings from one side of the building to the other!  That's right, friends, I'm moving rooms!  (To be clear, just rooms, not grades.)

So I'm leaving behind my beloved s inside classroom with no windows, no sink, no bathroom (but yes, all organized and laid out perfectly!), to move to a bigger, we'll lit (because of my new window!), room with a bathroom, sink, and huge storage closet!

So, of course more pics will come, but in the mean time, I thought I'd ask... How many of you all have windows in your rooms??  And what's your favorite part of your room?  Would you leave it behind for a bigger, better one or would you choose to stay in your fantastically organized room of 4 years?? Love to hear your thoughts!  Happy Monday!  :)

Sunday, August 4, 2013

What Have YOU Been Up To? Want to See What I've Been Doing?!

Okay, so I’ll admit I’ve been a little MIA the past few weeks (yes, even after I came back and started blogging “full time” again…).  It’s hard!  I know!  But here, in my mind, I do have some validation and excuses for being gone.  Ha! 

(Also, I'd like to take a moment to apologize for no pictures...I know, what fun is reading a blog without being able to see, right?!  I had pictures all ready to go, but my awesomely ancient laptop is seeming to have some technical difficulties at the moment and will not upload them to Blogger...So I will keep trying to post them and see what happens!)   :)

In the mean time, here’s what I’ve been doing with my summer (although not totally glamorous, still tons of fun!):

“Thing #1”—Summer Learning Groups.  For a few weeks, I’d meet with students from my school for an hour each morning.  Group session one was an enrichment book study using How to Eat Fried Worms.  Love. That. Book.!!!  And, LOVE. That. Group!!!

We would sit out under the gazebo at one of our local parks, read, discuss, and do activities with the book each morning.  Fun, challenging, and meaningful!  If you haven’t read that book yet, I strongly advise doing so.  It’s a children’s chapter book, but I promise you’ll love it, and then want to share it with your kiddos! 

“Thing #2”—My ever popular tutoring.  I’ll admit I did take a break for a few months there, but now I’m back on the road again.  I put my teacher hat back on and my reading intervention skills and knowledge of dyslexia to good use. 

“Thing #3”—Teaching Summer Camps.  The first week of camp (a few weeks back) was our K-1 “Zoologists in Training” camp where our class of 22 little students learned about an animal a day.  We got to read lots of books, watch some interesting videos about the animals, write little “reports” (really, like 2 sentences!), and of course make cute animal crafts!

So, do you forgive me now?  I do have another camp this coming week, but I think now that my co-teacher and I are in a routine, things will be a little more smoothly and I will have a little more free time!  I can’t wait to hear what all of you guys have been doing this summer, and I honestly can’t wait to see what everyone’s lives are like once school starts back again.  2 weeks and counting for me!


Leave me a comment, tell me what you’ve been up to!  I’d LOVE to read them, especially if you’ve done something fabulously wonderful that will make me jealous!  ;) Hope you all enjoy the rest of your weekend!