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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Pirates, Freebies, and Giveaways

So here I am blogging again and my report cards STILL aren't done, but I just had to share the some of the pirate things we have been working on.  Oh and some of the AHH MAZING giveaways that are out there!

First up we have been working on our pirate theme this week.  One of my fabulous teaching team members found this hilarious book, Dirty Joe the Pirate A True Story.
Dirty Joe sails the sea plundering other ships to steal their socks.  In the end he meets another pirate named Stinky Anne who steals underwear!  Can you believe I read this story and my class was not rolling on the floor in hysterics over the word underwear!!! (I think something might be wrong with them, I have never had a class that didn't giggle hysterically any time they heard the word underwear!)

I also wanted to share some pictures of the pirate owl glyph we made today.  I think they turned out SUPER cute!   The kids loved making them!
I love the eyelashes on this one!  She wanted to make it a girl pirate.
This kiddo wanted to add some facial hair to his pirate owl!
Arggh I hate when I can't get the pictures to turn!  But anywho I wanted to show you one with the pirate hat.
I love all of the "tattoos" that this kiddo added to his pirate!

And yes that is GLITTER you see on our pirates!  One kiddo asked if we were going to make the hooks shiny, so of course I said YES and broke out the glitter.  Then one thing led to another and there was glitter on eye patches, bandannas and hats!

I thought you might like the patterns I made for making this owl glyph, so click here to get your FREE copy. (the large body didn't fit on one sheet so in the file the bottom is on one sheet and the top is on another sheet) 

I also have the sheet with the glyph questions we asked and a pirate story map that I made for us this week. To get your free copy of those click here.  (sorry I couldn't get them in the same file)            

I also had to share a tip from one of my super smart teaching team members about doing glyphs.  She asks the question and makes the kids stand in two groups before she shows them what they get for each answer. (I can't believe I didn't think of that before!) And it did keep everyone from saying yes I saw an owl so they could get the pirate hook! I did have one kiddo who tried to change his answer when he saw the hook, but I was tough and said sorry you only get to answer once.

Now there are a few really great giveaways you will want to be sure to enter!! First my friend Khrys over at Keepin it Kool in Kinderland has reached 100 followers and her giveaway is huge!! Alot of bloggers teamed up to make a huge packet that a lucky someone will win.  Click below to go to her blog and enter!

Then Shannon at Kindergarten Hoppenings is also having a just because giveaway! Aren't those great! She is giving away your choice of one of her products but enter fast it ends January 31st!

Thanks for sticking with me through this really long post!!!  Hope you have a great end to your week!  I'd love to hear if you like the pirate owls (and feel free to pin) Thanks!!!!

Sunday, January 27, 2013


Hi all!  I should be working on my report cards and plans for the sub I have tomorrow afternoon but instead I just had to tell you about a couple of really great giveaways! (I always find a reason to procrastinate)

First my friend Khrys over at Keepin it Kool in Kinderland is almost to 100 followers so she is gearing up for a great giveaway!  I have donated my newest Winter Math Centers for Addition and Subtraction and she has lots of other great stuff ready for her giveaway. Head on over and check out her super cute blog! The sooner she hits 100 followers the sooner we'll get to the giveaway!

Then I found this great new blog called Blooming in First Grade!  She is giving away a super cute Valentine's Day graphics set!  Head on over and check it out but hurry you have to enter by Monday night!  I really hope I win this one!

OK that is it for tonight I really HAVE to get to work on those report cards!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Assessment Organization

Does anyone else feel like all we do is assess?  Don't get me wrong I LOVE data!  I love knowing exactly where my kiddos are functioning so that I can make sure I am meeting everyone's needs. And I might be a little obsessed with making charts of the data so I can see how my whole class is doing on a particular skill in just one glance. But some days and weeks I feel like I spend soooo much time assessing just for the sake of having data for meetings.  Let me give you the list of assessments we just had to give, PALS which is mandated by our state (it is a test of early reading skills), STAR Early Literacy which is a universal screener of early literacy skills, sight word list, Concepts of Print assessment, and Fountas and Pinnell  Benchmark assessment.  That list doesn't include the assessments that we give as a grade level for report cards either!  I am hoping for some changes for next year because is it just me or does that seem like a lot of tests to assess our students literacy skills! (and you will notice no tests for math, yup that's right NONE)

 But until it changes I had to find a way to keep all of that data, paperwork and information organized! Like a lot of teachers I keep my data in a binder. Click the picture to get your FREE copy of the cute cover. Having a cute cover makes me smile when I pull the binder out! (graphics by and

Inside the binder I have a plastic divider with pockets for each student. In the front pocket I keep their latest running record from the Fountas and Pinnell testing.
When you flip the pocket over on the other side I keep the papers that we copy and include in the report card.  I keep them in the pocket so they are easy to pull out and copy each quarter. (Sorry about the picture I couldn't get it to turn!)

 Next hole punched and in the binder is an overview sheet that I keep on each student. The sheet lists most of the basic literacy skills and all of the Common Core Math Standards.  This allows me to see the overall picture of each student at a glance. Every time I update information on the sheet I use a different colored pen or pencil and write the date with that same color on the date line so I can keep track of when they gained new skills or when I assessed that skill. 

If you would like a copy of my individual student sheet just click on the picture below to get your FREE copy.  I would be happy to modify it for you, just let me know.  You can email me at 

In the front cover of my binder I keep all of those charts that allow me to see how the class as a whole is doing clipped together.  I have one for letter sounds, letter recognition, sight words, number recognition, and lots of other skills.  So I might pull it out as we are reviewing the sight word said to see who still needs work on reading that word and I can quickly pull them together as a group. (Again sorry about the pic. Arghh!)

Hope this helps you organize some of your student assessment information!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Five for Friday Linky

I am linking up with Kacey at  Doodle Bugs Teaching for my first Five for Friday party.  


So here are my 5 random things from this week or today.

1.   This week was filled with testing!  I spent last weekend trying to get organized for testing and I plan on spending this weekend organizing the data I collected.  Stay tuned I am hoping to post some pics tomorrow of my data sheets and binder.

2.  Got a text from the hubby today that said "call me asap".  You know that is NEVER good!  Luckily it was lunch time so I called him right away.  Turns out he was at my kids school because my kinder daughter ran into another kinder head first on the playground and her mouth was bleeding A LOT and 3 of her teeth were loose!!!!  So I called the dentist and the hubby took her over there right away.  She  has all her teeth for now but will probably loose 1 or 2 of the front ones.  Luckily they are baby teeth and when they took the x-ray her permanent teeth have moved down so if she looses them hopefully the replacements will grow in quickly.  Now she has to eat soft food for 5 days, she hoping for nothing but mac and cheese and ice cream!

3. We managed to squeeze in some fun stuff around testing this week and my kiddos loved making this walrus I found on pinterest. Click on the picture to take you to the website with the directions.  I added a sheet where the kids wrote a fact they learned about walruses.  They cut out and glued the sheet on the back. Click here to get your free copy of the sheet.

4.  Looking forward to getting back to a regular schedule next week!  New guided reading groups and all!

5. Had to disinfect my room A LOT this week.  We have had all kinds of yuck going around, from flu to strep!  Including one of my kiddos throwing up on the keyboard while we were testing in the computer lab!  Hopefully next week everyone will be healthy!!!!

TGIF!!! Hope everyone has a great weekend!