Sunday, 22 February 2015

Black History Month: Harriett Tubman

As Black History month comes to an end this week, I always like to focus on one of my favorite Black History Heroes ... Harriet Tubman. I found her story to be such a fascinating one. Her bravery and strength allowed her to escape slavery, and help so many more people to freedom, as well!

I usually introduce her story through one of my favorite picture book biographies. I love this book from Scholastic.. it's from their "My First Biography" series. The text is simple and illustrations are bright and beautiful.

I also like to use these two picture books, too!

I then create a timeline of some of the important events that happened in her life, with my students. It's a great way to see how much they were able to absorb from her biography ... fantastic for retelling and comprehension. Then, we create a class story about her life. We use simple sentences, and each student illustrates one of the pages in the class story. The final product is always a masterpiece....

I couldn't help myself  ... I had to share their beautiful illustrations!! They worked so hard!!
 You can grab your copy of the Harriet Tubman Class Story here ... 

Check out my Harriet Tubman Craftivity, your students will love it!

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Organization Blog Hop

Is everyone ready for another fantastic blog hop hosted by the gals from Primary Powers?

It's that time of year, when everyone needs a little boost to get them going until Spring Break! I know that I need all of the "boosts" that I could get ... so I'm going to share how I use my V.I.P.'s in my classroom. ...

I love it when the students help me throughout the day!!! I used to have a "Classroom Jobs" bulletin board .. but it took up a lot of space. I have very limited bulletin board space in my classroom, and I felt that it was not working out for me. It stressed me out!! I simply had too many jobs! I also was not very good at rotating the students. That's when I came up with my V.I.P's of the day! My "VERY IMPORTANT PEOPLE"!!!

I select two students a day ... and they basically do everything for me ... They are like my assistants ... my "MINI PROFS!" as we might say in French! We go over some of the important "jobs/tasks" that I need help with over the course of the day ... passing out, collecting, sweeping, office, chairs ... You say it, annnnnnddd they do it!! They are so eager to be the "V.I.P's", that they pretty much want to do everything!!

I framed these two posters in my classroom, and use Crayola's Window Writers to change the names of my V.I.P.'s daily. I keep a boy's class list and a girl's class list near by .. and simply go down the list. My students love how predictable it is, and they keep me organized as to whose turn it is! They don't let me forget who comes next, that's for sure!!!!

Give it a try! You'll love it!!

If you missed anything and want to start over ... this is where it all begins ...

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Groundhog Day

Hello Everyone,

I'm not sure how ya'll are feeling about winter right now, but I think that I am DONE!!! It has been sooooooooo cold up here lately ... that I can't take it anymore. I'm ready for everything to just melt and spring to be on it's merry way.

The great thing is that time is on our side ... January is flying by! I can't believe that Groundhog day is just around the corner. I'm really hoping that cute little furry creature, predicts an early spring (fingers and toes crossed)!!! The problem is that when I really want something bad enough ... it never usually happens  ... but it's worth hoping for!!! Snow, cold, GO AWAY!!!

Saturday, 29 November 2014

Cyber Monday

Hi everyone!! Thanks for popping in!
You've landed at stop 15 of our blog hop!
We have teamed up with GoNoodle to share some of the ways you can use GN in YOUR classroom! Of course, we have lots of things to giveaway too!!!!!

If you want to start at the beginning, head on over to sweet Molly's blog by clicking her button!

Lucky to Be in First

I use GoNoodle in MANY different ways in my classroom, but here is how I get some of those reluctant Go Noodlers .. to noodle in my classroom!

1 - My GoNoodle policy is that you don't have to dance or copy everything they are doing on the screen, but you do have to MOVE! I encourage my toughest noodlers to march, jump, walk in place ... they can't just sit in their seats.

2 - Know your NOODLERS! Not all of my students like the same things, but I am getting to know what make some of my toughest noodlers wiggle! This is important! One of our class favorites is 'Boom Chicka Boom' from The Learning Station! It's a hoot!

3 - V.I.P. Noodler - My V.I.P. Noodler gets to pick our brain breaks for the day! My students love this. They can't wait for their turn! I suit them up in some GO NOODLE gear, and they walk around the classroom encouraging their friends to noodle! I find that even my toughest noodlers are so anxious to pick our songs and get Maximo on the screen!

4 - Noodler of the Day - I try to pick one student everyday, that I feel that has given GoNoodle all of their heart and soul!

5 - All Star Noodler - The students in my class love our weekly All Star Noodler! One student a week gets to be our All Star Noodler ... they basically get to have a solo in the middle of the room ... while we all all cheer them on ... sometimes there are even showdowns between a couple of All Star Noodlers! LOVE IT!

6 - You need to check out Casey Jane' from Wiggling Scholars and her ...

Of course, GoNoodle has got you covered...

Starting on Cyber Monday, GoNoodle is also offering all Primary Powers readers 30% off purchases from the GoNoodle Shop all the way through to December 8! AMAZING, right?!?!
Use the code POWERS30 at checkout to receive the discount PLUS a special gift from GoNoodle and Primary Powers
In addition to new t-shirts, tumblers, and other goodies for GoNoodling teachers, you can purchase affordable, pre-wrapped gift packs for students to bring a little GoNoodle love to your classroom this holiday.

I am so excited to tell you that I get to give one lucky reader a classroom supply of GoNoodle Headbands!

Please enter the giveaway below:

Don't forget to check out the GoNoodle Facebook Fan Page

It's time to keep on hopping! All of my Primary Powers friends have some great swag to give away AND amazing ideas to share. Be sure to stop by Primary Powers for a chance to win the grand prize!. A FREE subscription to GoNoodle PLUS!

Click the picture below to head over to Permanently Primary!
You can read all about how Sarah uses GoNoodle to calm her students!

Friday, 10 October 2014

Reading and Writing Helpers

I love this time of year ... and it's not ONLY because the leaves are changing colors!!! It's because it's the time of the year, when my firsties begin to see themselves as readers and writers! It's so magical to see that special smile, when "things" begin to click for them ... I just LOVE it! However, it's also the most demanding time of the year, as well! These little cuties are not as "independent" as we would like them to be. "Mrs. Leslie ... how do you spell "this" ... how do you spell "that" .... " It can be exhausting.

It is so important to provide your students with all of the necessary tools for them to become independent readers and writers!!! This is why I created my "Reading &Writing Helpers" tool!

I created two charts: an alphabet chart and a sound chart. I used the same graphics that are displayed on the posters around my classroom.

I also created a sight word list. These are words that they will eventually master and spell on their own ... EVENTUALLY ... right? LOL!!!

I then glued them into a file folder, and it became an awesome tool for my students to use for any reading and writing activity.

Hopefully, your students will find it helpful, too!


Saturday, 2 August 2014

Five For Friday

Today, I'm linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching , for some Friday fun!

Where did July go? I swear, it just flew by .. I can't believe that I have 24 days left until I go back to school, and 24 days left of my maternity leave! Time flies ... when you have four kids! Little Xander and I had a FANTASTIC year together! His smile makes me giggle inside and out!

I haven't been to a concert in a VERY long time .. and this week, I got to see two concerts.  I went to go see JT (notice the capitals!!) and Bruno Mars, my two favorite artists, EVER!! These two HOTTIES, are amazing performers! I danced, my heels off !! Yes, probably not one of my smartest moves ...wearing heels to a concert (I did that in Vegas, too! You would have thought that I would have learned my lesson by now ... apparently NOT!) but I did it, and 6 days later ... I still feel the FUN! 

I did some cross border shopping AGAIN, and got me some more teacher swag! Gosh, Target is so much better when you have to wait at customs .. for an hour .. to buy stickers, stamps, and laminating pouches!!!
I love me, my cross border shopping sprees!

On top getting ready to go back to school, we are moving in 14 days! Yes, folks ... WE ARE NUTS!! I have 14 days left to pack a lot of stuff! Overwhelming you say .. YES.. but I can do it!! Sleep is an understatement ... wine is a MUST!!!

The TPT Back To School Sale is just around the corner!!
Get your cards, ready to SHOP and CHING!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, 17 July 2014

What Happens in Vegas ...

Hello Everyone!!
I can't believe that I went to Vegas last week. It was one of the most inspiring and exciting trips of my life! I went with my best friend Nicole from Today in Second Grade, and my other buddy Val from All Students Can Shine! I won't lie to all of you,  it was tough leaving my four children and Mr. Leslie behind, but I did it ... and I am proud of ME! We were gone for a total of 6 days! I have never done that before .. but it was really worth it! I feel SUPERCHARGED!!! LOL!!!

The first night we arrived, we got dressed in a hurry and went to TAO for a scrumptious late night dinner! Definitely, a great way to kick start our trip!

The SDE & TPT conferences were sensational. At one point I had to just breathe ... and pinch myself, just to make sure that I was really there. I learned so much!! I met some of the most inspirational bloggers, EVER!!! I felt star struck by Deanna Jump, Rachel Smith and Cara Caroll, Kim Adsit, Jennifer White, Erica Bohrer, Kaci Hoffer, Greg Smedly and Corinna just to name a few!

The TPT Happy Hour was a blast! I had a couple glasses of wine (maybe more than a couple!!!), got to unwind a bit, and chat with Sarah Kirby and my pals!!!

I also got to meet Nicki from Nicki's Notepad! She is so sweet!! I loved chatting away with her!! We really hit it off!!

How did we manage to add in a little shopping, an excursion to the Grand Canyon, and a MOTOWN show??? Good Question!!!

OMG!! I can't believe that I got to experience the Grand Canyon with my BESTIE!!! It was surreal!! When I got into the helicopter, I had a bit of a FREAK OUT moment ... but managed to keep my eyes open for most of the trip! Nothing beats a glass of champagne at 9 o'clock in the morning, at the bottom of the Grand Canyon! That sure took my jitters away!!

The Motown Show was just a B-L-A-S-T!! There is a cute story about how we got tickets to the show (I will leave that for another time!!!) Mr. Foster, you rock.. WHAT AN HONOR!! I think that I sang and danced for the entire hour and a half!! (I wore flats .. thank goodness!) It brought me back to such special times in my life .. I remember dancing to so many of these songs, with my mom and dad.. I really enjoyed listening to the hotties from Human Nature .. they are so talented!! They were definitely eye candy, and ... pretty sweet to my ears, too! 

On another note.. my husband sent me this picture, during one of the conferences .. and this message.... 

"Babe, what time does Julian take a nap?!!??"

LOL!!! OIE!!!!

This trip was out of this world! PHENOMENAL !!! So much learning, laughter, and INSPIRATION!!! What an action packed week!! I can't wait for next year!!