Sunday, October 7, 2012

A Super Swap and a Giveaway

Yesterday was the wonderful "magical product swap" hosted by Jessica from Mrs. Stanford's Class!  I just love these product swaps, and I'm always thrilled to have the opportunity to participate!


I reviewed one of Fern Smith's products and Fern reviewed one of mine!  Make sure you check out Fern's blog for tons of great tips and some awesome freebies!

I got to try out Fern's Halloween themed multiplication center games, and the kids and I loved them!  Pick them all up from her store for just $5!  

She tested out my scoot game called rounding robots!  It's one of my best selling products on TPT, and it is great practice for rounding to the nearest ten and/or hundred!  If you liked her review and want the chance to win your own copy of the game, enter below by Wednesday at midnight!  All you have to do to enter (and maybe win!) is follow my blog!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Multiplication - Scary or Sweet?

Scary or sweet?  Tricks or treats?  How do your kids see multiplication?

Each and every year we work...and work...and work...on multiplication!  It is a big focus for our kids after Christmas, but I'm starting early with our review this year!  Our third graders should come to us knowing how to multiply by 0's, 1's, 2's, 5's, and 10's, but you know how that goes!  Thanks to Fern Smith, of Fern Smith's Classroom Ideas, my kids had a great time reviewing their 1's, 2's, and 5's this week with some Halloween fun!

Jessica Stanford is hosting another wonderful product swap, and I was paired up with Fern! 

 Looking through her TPT store, all of the great products made it so hard for me to make a choice, but I absolutely loved her Thirteen Halloween Multiplication Center Games!

Here's Fern's description of her product:

"This 110 Paged Halloween Themed Center Game has one game for every times tables ~ Zero to Twelve!!
* 13 Different Halloween themes in full color with student directions included.
* 110 PAGES of printable center games including a variety of different ways to play the game.
* Distinct Cover Sheet to glue on folders, or place in a Ziplock Baggie.
* Each theme has two pages of Matching Problems & Answers in Color to be cut apart as playing cards. Or use one page as a game board and one page cut apart as the matching playing cards.
* Everything also comes in Black and White if you want to save on color printer ink!
** Extra Bonus! A Cover Sheet for your students to organize their own folder for individualize center games.This center game is designed to be printed, cut apart for your classroom and laminated if desired. It is cute, colorful and is completely designed to be an independently led student activity. EXCELLENT for when the teacher is working with small reading or math groups. It also contains the ENTIRE file in a black and white version so that you can copy it and send it home as weekly homework. Great for the students to cut out and practice fine motor skills as well as reinforcing their multiplication times tables! Placed together or apart, the concepts in this center game helps a child learn to have quicker mental math!"

Not only do you get thirteen great multiplication games with cover (title) pages and student directions, but you get them in color and black and white and you get extra ideas for different ways to assemble and use the games!  I didn't take pictures of my preparation (I forget so many things lately!), but it was super quick and easy.  It took me maybe one 45 minute planning period to print, laminate, and cut out the color game pieces, title pages, and directions for three games!  I started with the 1's, 2's, and 5's because, like I said, that should be review for my kiddos!  I used large manilla folders to store the game pieces and directions with the game's cover/title page on the front. (forgot to snap a picture of that too unfortunately...)  But on to the game!

Check out these cute game pieces that can get us all in the Halloween spirit!

I loved Fern's tip for making the games self-checking!  I have TONS of small stickers/chart seals that I used to label matching cards.  Thanks for the idea, Fern!

The kids had a great time reviewing these multiplication facts when there was a fun game to help them out!  And with the self-checking cards, they all had the chance to be successful and make their own adjustments and corrections!

Fern has so many great products and tons of freebies in her store!  Be sure to check them all out.  She has great Halloween themed addition center games too if you're kids aren't quite ready for multiplication!  

Visit Fern's blog to check out her review of one of my products and to find all kinds of great ideas!

And don't forget to visit Jessica's blog to read reviews of lots of great teacher created products!
Come back here tomorrow for a quick giveaway if you like my product reviewed by Fern!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

A Tip for Today

Happy Sunday!  I hope everyone had a great week last week and has had a wonderful weekend as well!  I have a tip for you today.  You probably already know all about it, but I found it by accident working on my latest product!

When I create new products for TPT or TN, I use power point to make a collage of the pages included in the file.  In the past I've always saved each slide from my document's original power point file as a picture to insert into the collage.  Well I have found a better least for me!

Create your document (I use power point) and save it as a PDF before you begin to create your preview picture!

First, open a blank power point presentation and insert any backgrounds or frames you'd like to use as well as the text you want to include, such as the title and your name.

Next, choose 'insert - picture from file', and choose your product's pdf file.  You should see a pop-up screen that says 'Select Page' and is showing the first page of your product.

Now you're ready to find the page you want to insert!  Scroll through until you find the picture you want to include and just click to insert it.  Easy-Peasy!  Resize it and put it in place!

Finally, insert the rest of your pages/pictures and arrange them to your liking!

To me, this is so much easier and less time consuming than saving each slide as a picture then going back to find them later.  Plus, it saves space on your computer if you're like me and forget to delete all of those slide pictures when you're finished with them!

Anyway...I hope this quick little tip is helpful to somebody out there!

My rounding unit, "Ready and Rounding" is now up and active on TPT and on TN if you're interested, and don't forget to download your rounding freebie from my last blog post!

Everybody have a great week ahead!  We're out on Friday, so I'm thinking it'll be a great week!!

Monday, September 10, 2012

I'm back!!

If anyone is still here, I'm back, and I have lots to share today!

First I have some big news....

Can this count as a Monday Made it?

Tomorrow we'll be 12 weeks, and as awesome and amazing as it is (at least to me), I guess it can't be a Monday Made It! haha...but I do have some things to share with you over the next month or so that have already made my year easier!  I'll save a couple for next month's linky!

Now hopefully I can make math a little easier for you this year!

We just finished up rounding to the nearest ten and the nearest hundred.  One of the things my kids have the most trouble with is knowing their options!  I usually see many answers at the beginning that affirm that...6 rounded to the nearest ten is 60...236 rounded to the nearest hundred is 600.  So that's always where I start, learning how to find your choices.  We review counting by tens and hundreds first.  Then we practice finding the two multiples that a number is between.  We make a color coded hundreds chart and then practice A LOT by writing our options down to find the correct answer.  That hundreds chart and other worksheets for a rounding unit are in my new "Ready and Rounding" unit that's {almost} for sale in my TPT store or TN shop.  But I have a freebie for you too!  Click on the picture to download the freebie and use these two worksheets to practice finding your options for rounding to the nearest ten and the nearest hundred!

If you like those worksheets remember to check out my "Ready and Rounding" unit {soon} and my "Rounding Robots" Scoot Game in my TPT store or my TN shop!

And I want to apologize again before I go...can you forgive me for my month long (and then some) absence??  Finding out we're having our first precious little one, school starting about 2 weeks later, and a few scary moments with a one night hospital stay in between (already...ugh...) have really kept me occupied!  I've already missed two days of work due to unplanned doctor visits...and I HATE missing work!!  Hopefully things will straighten themselves out soon and my body will start cooperating!  And hopefully I'm back for good...for at least a post or two a week!

So if you're still with me and you're still reading this 'forgive me, please' post, if you'd like to proofread my rounding unit leave me a quick comment!  The first person will get to keep the finished unit for free!  I'd love to post it within the next couple of days so make sure you can look over it soon!  Anyway, thanks again for sticking with me, and know that I'll try to be a better blogger during this school year! :)

Now go grab some more great freebies!

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Everyone enjoy the week ahead!  
I hope it got off to a great start today!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Hershey Bars...Yes, Please!

If you asked for one of my scoot game freebies over the weekend, check your email!  They've all been sent!  I had about 3 people who didn't leave their email address.  And guess're no-reply bloggers too, so I can't send you the game you requested.  {Check out Jessica's tutorial to fix that!}  If you already commented on that post and didn't get your freebie, email me!

Now...on to those Hershey bars!  Who doesn't love tasty chocolate candy?  {Remember my chocolate drawer I told you about?}  Using chocolate for math makes it even better!

I joined in with Jessica from Mrs. Stanford's Class and over 100 other teachers for her magical product swap, and boy am I glad!


Thanks to this little party, I got to meet a great new blogger!  I swapped products with Julie from Math Is Elementary!  Julie is a third grade teacher from Florida who teaches math and science.  You have to go check out her blog!  She has terrific math ideas {a blogger after my own heart =)} not to mention great ideas for other subjects too!  Click on her button at the bottom of this post to visit her blog!  And don't forget to visit her TPT store to grab some freebies or one of her other great products (like the one I'm reviewing today)!

I got to review Julie's TPT product "We Love Candy Bar Fractions"!  Here's her description of the product.

"Candy Bar Fractions (16 pages) is a math literature unit designed to coordinate with Jerry Pallotta's Hersheys(TM) Fractions Book. It contains models of whole candy bars and all the fractional parts as well as equivalent fractions recording sheets, fraction cards and fraction comparison work mats. Aligned with Common Core standards for 3rd and 4th grade, it can be used for any grade working with fractional parts / equal shares."

As soon as I opened the file and looked over it, I loved it!  I can see this being a big hit in my classroom!  As much as full size Hershey bars cost, I can't buy one for every child, so the printable Hershey bars in this product will be great (and less messy) to use for manipulatives along with the fraction cards for 1/2 through the twelfths!  And after the activity maybe we can share a few bars or each get a mini bar as a treat for a job well done!  You get whole bars, halves, fourths, thirds, sixths, and twelfths.

Laminating and cutting could take a while, but this would be a perfect and easy task for a parent volunteer you may have!  I find it really difficult to ask for help sometimes, but I've found that a lot of parents really do want to help and just need to know what to do.

When you have all of those Hershey Bars and number cards ready to go, grab your work mats.  You get three work mats - one for comparing equal fractions, one for less than, and one for greater than.  They'll be easy for the kids to use alone or with a partner!  In my class we'll be comparing first with the bars and then adding the number cards.

As they work, each student will record the equivalent fractions on a recording sheet.  You have three variations of the equivalent fractions recording sheet.

You can choose the recording sheet that lets the kids find and write any two equivalent fractions.

Or you can choose the recording sheet that has them find all of the equivalent fractions they can for any fraction they want to begin with.

My favorite is just like the second option I showed you, except for one thing.  The first fraction is given so students have to find fractions equivalent to it.  If you plan to check their recording sheets for accuracy, I think this one would be the easiest and quickest to check!

All in all, this is a great product!  I can't wait to see more of what Julie has to offer as she continues to add products to her store!  Be sure to check out her blog (click the button) and her TPT store (click here)!


And don't forget to check out all of the other product reviews linked up on Jessica's blog for her "Magical Product Swap"!


Are there any products you've found on TPT or TN that you just love?

Monday, July 30, 2012

Giveaway Winners and Repurposing

We have winners!  

Congratulations to Yvonnee and Tori!  You will each receive a copy of "The Worst Best School Year Ever" and an assortment of stickers.  Check your email, ladies!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
This week I have another super simple Monday Made-It!  I'm all about repurposing when I can...why buy something new when I already have something perfectly useful?  So, when I needed something to wrangle all of those tickets (earned for good behavior at our school) and box tops, I knew I had something perfect on hand!

Birchbox  boxes are really quite sturdy, so I knew that it could be just the thing I needed!  I just had to fix it up a bit to work with my class theme!  And that was really easily done!  {P.S.  I love Birchbox!  If you want to check it out and/or sign up click here!}

First, I measured and drew a rectangle on the lid (as centered as possible) and cut that out for the opening.  Then I grabbed some of my tie dye duck tape to match our retro theme and started covering the top of the box and what's seen of the bottom!

Finally, I used some scrapbooking rub-on letters (similar to these) and ribbon to label each box!

We take our tickets to the office every Friday, and it will be really easy for my kids to carry this ticket box down without losing any tickets because it is so sturdy and the lid is very well-fitting!

That's my simple but useful Monday Made-It for this week!  Maybe it will get you thinking about something you have laying around that you can use in a different way!

Congratulations again to the winners of my giveaway!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

It's My Blog's Birthday!

One year ago today I published my first post on my little ole blog!  I didn't keep up with it so well during the school year, but I think I might have the hang of it now!  Hopefully!  I plan to keep up with my posting a little better this time around!

Now it's time to celebrate!  

It's my birthday, but you get the presents!

I have reached 250 followers, and my blog is one year old!  So to celebrate I'm throwing a sale in my TPT store and in my TN shop for 15% off this weekend only, July 28th - July 29th!

I'm also giving ALL of my followers a birthday gift!  You can pick any one of my scoot games listed below, and I'll email it to you for free!  You can see all of my games and more details and pictures in my TN shop or in my TPT store!

Just leave me a comment with your email address and the item you'd like BEFORE MIDNIGHT on Sunday the 29th!  I'll have all of the items emailed by Wednesday, August 1st!

Scoot: Identifying Nouns

Scoot: Rounding Robots

Scoot: Adjectives

And finally, I'm giving away some items to make going back to school a little more fun!  2 winners will each receive a copy of Barbara Robinson's chapter book "The Worst Best School Year Ever" (you know how I love those crazy Herdman's) and 7 packs of stickers (various shapes, sizes, and themes)!

You've just got one easy entry using rafflecopter!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

So, do you have any blogging tips to help me keep it up after school starts?  

I'm going to have A LOT going on!

**Both giveaways are now closed!  Thanks to everyone who entered!**