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Wednesday, July 8, 2015

July Currently

Joining up with Oh Boy 4th Grade for this month's Currently.  I am thankful for this linky as it always motivates me to post on my blog...I have been gone for WAY too long.

My dog Rufus is so happy, especially when he gets a new toy.  He can squeak all day long!  He now has his own Instagram page and he is becoming quite popular.  Check him out and see him in action!
Instagram: Rufusthejack

Have you been following Ashley at Schroeder Shenanigans and Angie from Lucky Little Learners? They have been streaming LIVE form Las Vegas!  Periscope is amazing - I feel like I am there and am having a chance to experience the TPT convention.  I am very motivated to go next year.  Did you go this year?  Plan to go next year?  I would love to hear about everything you learned.

I had to work a few extra days this week so now I am officially starting my summer vacation. Every minute counts and I plan to take advantage of each moment.  I hope you're having a great summer. Thanks for dropping by! :)

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Parent-teacher Conferences

It's that time of year again - meeting with parents to discuss our kiddos.  My district has us meet with parents over 3 days.  This makes it much easier and feels  less stressful.  This year I decided to do things a little differently.  Not sure why it too so long but I digress... First of all, I used Sign-Up Genius to book all my appointments.  This worked beautifully!  If you have not used this site I recommend you check it ASAP!  It was very easy and all my appointments were done without an issue.  They certainly got the name right!

Next I decided to organize myself before conference day.  Usually I use lined paper, as I have a section in my assessment binder for each student with sample work and standards checklists etc.  However, this seemed like something worth trying.  It will allow me to get my "talking points" straight and give me a place to take notes during the meeting.  I will keep this for myself but maybe make a different form for the parents.   This form is all about math since I am an intervention teacher but I am sure it can easily be modified for a classroom teacher.  Here is a copy for you to use!  I hope you find it helpful.  Do you use a similar form?  If so I would love to know about it - leave me a message down below. :)  

Thanks for stopping by, have a great week!

Friday, March 6, 2015

Five for Friday

TGIF - What a busy week! I am happy to be linking up with Doodlebugs Teaching again.  I have been working my little 2nd graders to the bone.  While focusing on developing a deeper understanding of place value, I am focusing my attention to the Common Core Math Practices.  This week we charted "words we use to describe numbers" (bigger, smaller, less, more etc.) and practicing using these words when solving problems and explaining our thinking.  Below are some of the activities I planned to help develop their understanding.

These kiddos were struggling when answering questions that asked "how many more?"  I thought of this daily routine  that they loved!  Each student grabbed a bunch of cubes, counted them then lined them up.  Visually they could determine how many more.  But what math equations model how to find the difference, if presented in a word problems?  These physical bar model helped a lot!

Manipulatives can be a little confusing, especially if we introduce them too quickly.  This week I worked with a student who was stumped when I asked: Is 30 was the same at 3?  There was also some difficulty "seeing" 100 since it's simply 1 square base-10 block.  So to help with this misconception we started counting ones and didn't stop until we had 100 (phew, so glad  I had enough!).  There was a real "ah-ha" moment and she was so excited to label and take pictures.

Thank you Erin, from The Open Door Classroom - Race to 50 was a big hit.  We also did a number sort - using 3-digit numbers written in standard form and expanded form.  Keeping their hands active makes all the difference when these kiddos are practicing their math skills.  

DWELP - this game is addictive!  If you have the Starbucks app then it is free until May!!  If you like puzzles then it is for you.  To complete a puzzle, just link all the same-colored dots by placing them near another.  Sounds easy...but it's not.  I'm currently stuck on level 61 - help!  

SNOW DAY!  Yesterday was the perfect day for a snow day.  I recently had my closets refitted and painted and I was looking forward to this weekend so I could unpack all my clothes and stop living out of cardboard boxes.  Luckily I had a free day to get it done.  I also had a chance to watch season 1 of The Real Housewives of Melbourne.  How did I miss this show?  Luckily the entire season was one and I was able to watch mind-numbing, yet wonderfully entertaining reality TV!  :)

I'm looking forward to checking out your posts.  Thanks for stopping by.   Hope you had a great week!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

March Currently

It's March already?  The year is flying by!!! I haven't posted in a while but I can't resist a new Currently.  Thank you Farley at Oh Boy 3rd Grade for keeping me motivated :)

I've been watching a bit too much TV lately but how can I resist Downton Abbey finale and the start of House of Cards.  Last time my hubby and I watched the entire season in 1 week.  This time I promise to make it last.

I am counting the days 'till spring break, cant wait to get in the sun.  However, I hear the snow plows outside which make me think we will have a snow day - I always welcome the time off to catch up on planning.

I live in NYC and Whole Foods just opened up in my neighborhood - YAY!  I think I will need to shop off-hours because it is SO crowded.  9am?  (maybe tomorrow ;)

Have a great week!!

Friday, January 2, 2015

Happy New Year! 5 for Friday

Wow....it's January already!  It is hard to believe how fast the school year is going.  It is January, making it the perfect time to reflect and set some goals for next year.  Joining Doodle Bug's linky today to let you know what I'm up to.

Holiday is coming to an end :( It went quickly but I'm not sure how.  Went away with my family and had a great time.  Dress up  shopping is always fun when you're on vacation!  Kept us busy and laughing all night!



Jack had a chance to swim with the dolphins.  AMAZING!  He is a dog lover and said (apart from them being wet and slippery) it was just like petting a pup.  What an wonderful opportunity.  Big thanks to my brother and sister-in-law for taking him out for the day!


As you noticed, we were in Mexico.  It was a wonderful week.  So glad we were able to spend some extra time with family.  Sad to say we live so close and still can't find the time.  Goal for 2015- make an effort to see family more often!  Even though we are all busy with sports, kids activities, work etc. we still need to make the time.  


Goal for 2015 - don't cut my hair!!!!!  I went crazy this summer and chopped of my hair.  It grew back a bit and I asked for a trim, just to fix up the ends.  This is what I got!  It is a nice cut (I had to tell the stylist) but just too short for me!  I am horrified and can't get over it.  TOO SHORT!  I vow not to cut my hair again until July.  *I know...it's just hair, it will grow back,  and I am overreacting.  However, in my world it is a big deal ;)  Waaa...

(I look happy in this pic, but only because I'm standing next to this cutie!)

Goal for 2015 - start some sort of exercise.  Typical, right?  But I guess it's for a reason.  I enjoyed my vacation a bit TOO much and it's time to get back on track.  Power walking, swimming, yoga, running, biking?  Maybe an exercise video to do in my home!  Can you recommend one?  I really don't want to spend the money on a gym right now.  Any of you hear of Fitness Blender on YouTube?  It's free, a good place to start, no?  Please share your suggestions, I'm all ears!

Wishing you all a wonderful new year, filled with health, joy, and prosperity.  Thanks for stopping by. :)

Monday, December 22, 2014

Decomposing 10 Freebie!

Happy Monday!  It's holiday time so let's share some freebies!

I am always looking for different ways to support my students' understanding of 10.  Being able to decmpose and compose 10 is necessary component when developing number sense.  But let's be careful, we want our kiddos to be flexible with their numbers and be able to use what they know when they start working with 2  and 3-digit numbers.  After all, it's all about 10 so we don't want them to simply memorize these facts.  To that end, I try to review these facts and incorporate games as often as possible.    Many of my resources use 10-frames and rekenreks but I couldn't resist using this adorable cookie clipart by Krista Wallden at Creative Clips.  I love all her work and they were part of her Unwrap Freebies.  Thank you, Krista! 

Ok...back to the game.  Kids shake and spill - I had my students use red and green chips (sprinkles) and gently spill them on the cookie.  They counted how many landed on the the cookie and figured out how many are off the cookie.  Hopefully they can remember their combinations, if not, the chips are there to count and check!  Students then wrote the combinations on a recording sheet.  It is cute and fun for the kids while supportive and helpful for their understanding!
Grab your free copy here from Google Drive!

Glad to be linking up with Charity for the Manic Monday linky.  What freebies do you have to share this week?  

Happy holidays!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

December Currently

December is my favorite time of year! Is it me, or are most people in a good mood?  I love the holiday decorations, Christmas cheer and even a little snow!  Time to link up with Farley again for this month's Currently.

So I am listening to Pandora, Holiday Jazz.  So festive :)  I have the channel set in my car, as well.  The songs start to repeat but that's OK.  Have you heard "Baby It's Cold" by Idina Menzel and Michael Buble?  The video is adorable, check it out!!

I'm loving my new Startbucks mug.  It's part of the new Dot Collection. It is big and has such a cute picture - perfect for a big cup of tea.   It's the little things ;) 
I am starting to think about vacation!  We will be traveling to Mexico and I am very excited.  I feel like school just started and BAM vacation is almost here.  Time flies, maybe I'm getting old!

I want an extra hour of sleep.  There is never enough time (old complain, right?!)  Maybe I'll set my alarm an hour early to psych myself out.  Hmm...maybe NOT!

My nails are horrible and the cold weather doesn't help.  I am in desperate need of a manicure (shh!)

Finally, I am giving thanks to ALL teacher bloggers out there.   I am always in awe and inspired by you.  I am a new blogger and have a lot to live up to, one day at a time.  Thank you for all you do and share :)

Have a great month and a happy and healthy holiday season and New Year!!