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Facebook Fan Freebie

Did you know that when you deactivate your personal Facebook account it also deactivates any fan pages you have made?  Yep - it does.  I deactivated my personal FB account a few months ago and didn't think much of my blog page I made.  I know I should have, but with all the yucky stuff that was going on I didn't.

Yesterday, I decided to post something on my blog page.  I couldn't get on it.  Oops!  Well, I got everything all figured out last night and decided to add a freebie to my page.  Head over to the Teaching is Sweet Facebook page, become a fan, and a great freebie will be waiting for you.  {Hint:  It's my best selling item on TpT and will only be up for a few days.}

As 2013 comes to an end, I want to thank you for sticking with me!  I know I havent' been the best blogger out there, but I am going to try harder in the new year.  Have a fun and safe New Year!
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Fun With Verbs

My class and I had so much fun working on verbs in November.  {Yes, November. Remember that I have been a tad absent in my blogging?}

We started out our unit on verbs by singing this groovy song by Have Fun Teaching.  It was great to get the students up and moving.  {Warning:  This song will get stuck in your head and your significant other may look at you strangely when you start singing "A verb is a word.  It's an action word."}

Funny side story - I was being observed on my use of Kagan strategies and this was my little intro to my lesson. See where this was going?  Yep, for some reason right at that moment was when Youtube decided to stop working on my classroom computer. Going with the punches, I had the students sit down to start our strategy.  No sooner had they sat down, the video started playing again.  So we got up and started singing and dancing.  I am so glad my Instructional Coach had a great sense of humor and enjoyed the song.  {She was dancing along with us!}

We also did another activity that got my Kinders up and moving.  I call it The Verb Can.  Original, I know.  Don't be jealous of my creativity.  haha

Anyway, I had different verbs written on slips of paper in an empty can.  I would pull a piece of paper out and my Kinders would act it out.  The students had so much fun!  When they would start to giggle, I would say "The verb wasn't giggle" and that would make them giggle even more.  We had such a great time!

I had a little time this morning and I decided to cutesy it up a bit.  {I have to say it was great getting back into the designing mood.  It's been a while. :) }

I can't wait to take it to school and show it to my Kinders.  They will love the updated version!

If you would like to have your students giggling up a storm while practicing verbs, you can get your copy {here}.  I have it discounted right now for 20% off.

I would love to give away a few copies of The Verb Can to my followers.  The first three followers that comment and leave their email address will get a free copy.

What fun activities do you do in your classroom to practice verbs?

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Thirteen in '13 Linky

I saw this fun linky around blogland and thought it was just what I needed to get the year over with finish off my year.  See, I have had a kind of yucky year and am impatiently waiting for the new year to begin.  {I won't go into all the yuckiness here, but I will say it has nothing to do with my class or husband/son.  Those two (3?) things have actually been the best things going this year.}  Anyway, no one came here to listen to me whine.  On with the show blog post.  Thanks to Hadar, Traci, and Kristin for hosting this linky!

13.  Favorite piece of clothing
Last Christmas, my mother-in-law bought me a sweater to wear over my shirts at work.  My classroom gets cool sometimes so I have always had a long sleeved shirt at school to wear.  This sweater looks so much nicer.  I have to confess.  I also wear it at home and in the car when we go on trips {my hubby likes to keep the car/house cool}.  I may be wearing it right now.  ;)

I am wearing it here.  Love it!
12.  Favorite Movie You Watched
My favorite movie that I saw in the movie theater was Frozen.  We took our son to see this movie earlier this month, and I absolutely loved it!

My favorite movie that I watched at home on Netflix was The King's Speech.  I thought it was such a good movie. {I may have to watch it again soon!}

11.  Favorite TV Series
Unfortunately, I don't have just one favorite.  My favorites are How I Met Your Mother, NCIS Los Angeles, and Blue Bloods.  I also enjoy Two Broke Girls, Elementary, Big Bang Theory, and Hawaii 5-0.  {I think I just realized why I've been neglecting my blog.  haha}

10.  Favorite Restaurant
Sadly, I no longer have a favorite restaurant.  I did yesterday, but not today.  We went to my fav restaurant today, and they changed their menu.  I had two entrees I liked and my husband had an entree he liked.  Guess what?  All three entrees were off the menu!  The waitress said they took a few items off the menu.  I guess the few items were the things we liked.  :(

I will have to answer this question now with my favorite fast food place - Cafe Rio.  I love the pork burrito and queso with chips.  Yum!

9.  Favorite New Thing You Tried
Kagan Strategies!  We had some inservice about Kagan Strategies in November.  I love using them in my classroom!  {I hope to write a blog post soon about this.}

8.  Favorite Gift You Got
I am going to have to break the rules again.  I have two favorite gifts, but they kind of go together.

I got my Silhouette Cameo as an early gift in November.  I haven't used it a lot, but I love it!  I also got a Cannon Selphy to print off pictures at home.  I can't wait to use these two new items to do a little scrapbooking!

7.  Favorite Thing you Pinned
I have two of these too.  {See a pattern here?}

I love quotes, and this one really spoke to me.

I laughed when I saw this one.  I showed it to my husband, and he didn't get it.  I guess it's a teacher thing.  :)

6.  Favorite Blog Post
It would probably have to be my post about how I set up my classroom tables.

5.  Best Accomplishment
I finally reached 200 followers on my blog this summer.  Thanks everyone!

4.  Favorite Picture

I snapped this picture of my husband and son watching the fireworks at Disneyland from Disney's California Adventure.  Normally Colton has to have his headphones on when the fireworks are going off, but since we were in the other park, he was able to enjoy them without.  :)

3.  Favorite Memory
My favorite memory this past year was probably going back to Kansas last January to see my grandma.  She passed away in June, and I was so happy that I got to see her one last time.

2.  Goals for 2014
Personal:  Make time for myself to do what I enjoy.
Home:  Use my cleaning schedule and meal planning apps.  :)
Professional:  Teach with rigor and intention.  Continue to make learning fun for my students and for myself!
Blog:  Post at least once a week.

1.  One Little Word
Challenge - I am going to try to challenge myself in different ways this year in order to achieve my goals.  It's not always going to be pretty or fun, but I need to do this for myself.  :)

Thanks for reading my Thirteen in '13!

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Making Stickers Using Your Silhouette Cameo

Have you ever wanted to make your own stickers for your classroom?  I've always wondered the best way to do just that.  Last night I was browsing around blog land at some scrapbooking blogs and found two tutorials on how to make stickers using the Silhouette Cameo.  The tutorials are {here} and {here}.  I didn't have any Silhouette sticker paper so I ran out to Staples to buy their brand of sticker paper.  {This paper was specifically recommended by one of blogs.}

I asked my son if he wanted me to make him some pirate stickers, and he said yes.  They were super easy to make by following the directions on the blogs.  I used KPM Doodles pirate set as my clip art.  I think they came out great!  They look just like stickers that you would buy at the store.

Colton had a lot of fun using these stickers to make a pirate picture.  They peeled off the backing just like a traditional sticker.

I have tons of ideas flying through my head as how I could make my own stickers to use in my classroom!  What have you made with your Silhouette?  Do you have any great tutorials that you have used?

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Five For Friday - Day After Thanksgiving Edition

Wow!  Three posts in one week.  That's more than I've written in three months.  haha {I'm telling you, it feels so good to be back in the swing of things!}  I am linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for Five for Friday!  Warning:  Only two are actually teaching related.  ;)

I saw this idea for a Squanto snack on Falling Into First and thought it was the perfect project to do right before Thanksgiving break.  The students did a great job learning the story of Squanto and had loads of fun making this snack.

This past week and a half, we have had Instructional Coaches come into our classrooms to teach us Kagan strategies to use in our classrooms.  I had previously heard of Kagan strategies, but loved seeing them in action with my own students.  The day after each strategy was taught, we were observed using the new strategy and given feedback from the ICs.  This is just the top of one of my observation sheets.  I have absolutely loved each and every strategy that I was taught and will being using them daily!

Yesterday, I shared the turkey that my husband deep fried.  Tonight I am sharing my son's Thanksgiving dinner.  Colton has "issues" with food as do many children with Autism.  He doesn't eat turkey, green bean casserole, mashed potatoes, stuffing etc.  My husband decided to make him some fries after the turkey was done.  He was very happy to see those fries.  :)  {By the way, he did eat some fruit and a roll too.}

We decided that this was the year to do Elf on the Shelf with our son.  Colton was super excited to see our elf appear.  He quickly named him "red coat elf".  {Yes, he named him with all lower case letters and made this teacher mommy cringe just a tad.  lol}  I am so excited to start this tradition with Colton!  {Colton is almost 8, but we didn't feel he would understand what was going previously.}

Did you do any Black Friday shopping?  I decided at about 3:00 this afternoon that I wanted to do a little scrapbook shopping.  I went to a local scrapbook store and Michaels.  I had a lot of fun doing a little shopping without too many crowds.  :)

Have a great weekend!

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Turkey Time

I hope that everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving!  We hosted my husband's family.  We had a total of 19 people over to our house.  I didn't know my house could hold 19 people - haha.

On this turkey day, I thought I would share some turkey fun from the past few weeks.  I am going to start with a video that my kids loved, loved, loved.  Save this little ditty for next year.  It will being going through your head all day.  {Don't ask me how I know.}

One day this month, I decided on the fly to do a directed drawing of a turkey.  I quickly drew up my sample and the kids went to work.  Here are a few of my students' pictures.  I just love how each one is original!  {Let me know if you are interested in the directions for next year.  I can get them written up for you.}

Did you see Ms. Makinson's Thanksgiving Turkey Writing Activity in TpT's November 17th 10 free download's newsletter?  Well, I did and thought it was super cute!  I decided to modify it a smidge for my students.  Instead of writing what they were thankful for, my students drew pictures.

My students also answered the question "Do you like to eat turkey?".  I had the students write their names on post it notes to add to our chart.  I have to say that I was a little surprised by the results.  I was sure at least one student would answer no.  :)

I leave you with a picture of our yummy turkey from today.  Every year, my husband deep fries our turkey. Soooo good!  How do you prepare your turkey for Thanksgiving?

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The Thankful Thread

Hi Everyone! I know, I know.  It's been a very, very long time since I last blogged. I am not even kidding when I say that my life has been a tad bit crazy.  Ok, maybe a lot crazy.  There's been a few ups and quite a few downs.  However, I am definitely on the uphill slide, and I am trying to see the positives all around me.  That's why when I saw people linking up with Molly from Lucky to Be in First for her Thankful Thread, I knew I needed to join in.  Sometimes it's good to just stop and appreciate all the good things in your life.  :)

I don't think I could ask for two better guys.  My husband is always so supportive of any and all of my little adventures.  He has this great little smirk that he makes when he is making a joke that I just love!  There are just so many reasons I love this man!  I am so thankful that I met him a little over 12 years ago.  My son is such a blessing.  It's not always easy having a son with Autism, but I wouldn't trade it for the world.  I love seeing all the things that he can do now that he couldn't before.  I love hearing him sing "London Bridges" (his current obsession).  I waited years to hear him talk and now he sings.  Worth.the.wait!

I just took this picture on Saturday.  I loved that my tree was finally changing colors and some leaves had fallen on the ground.  My husband and I built our home almost 11 years ago.  It's a beautiful house, and I'm so lucky to call it home!

I feel very blessed that we are able to take our son to places that he loves.  We have annual passes to Legoland and Disneyland.  We visit the beach and the mountains.  We try to take a mini vacation at least once every other month.  I know many people are not able to do this, so I feel so lucky to be able to.  The picture above was taken just a few weeks ago at Disneyland.  He had such a good time!

I am very thankful for my job.  Things have been very, um, interesting this year, but I love my job.  I don't know what I would do if I wasn't a teacher.  It's not always the easiest job, but it's so rewarding!

I am very thankful for my friends.  I don't know how I would have made it through these past months without them!

So, I decided to add some lighthearted things that I am thankful for also.  I love all my scrapbooking "stuff" (I won't tell you what my husband calls it - haha).  I just got a Silhouette Cameo a few weeks ago.  I haven't played with it a lot yet, but it's on my to do list this long weekend!  I love, love, love Target.  It's probably my favorite place to shop.  I always find things that I need, but I don't need.  You know what I'm talking about, right?  I also love my soda and candy.  These are two things that I probably tone down a little on, but what fun would that be?  lol

Well, there you have it.  I have many things to be thankful for.  What are you the most thankful for this holiday week?

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Little Miss Muffet

I just wanted to do a quick post to share our Little Miss Muffet project that we completed last Friday.  Each week, we read a new nursery rhyme.  We practice reading it everyday as a shared reading.  On Fridays, we do a fun project. 

Last week we made spiders to go with Little Miss Muffet.  Students were given a 9 x 12 sheet of black construction paper, a 9 x 6 piece of black construction paper, eight 1 x 6 pieces of black construction paper, and a small white piece of construction paper {I just eyeballed size}. After a little cutting and gluing, we had a class full of spiders.  We then added the nursery rhyme to the spider's body.  I thought they turned out so cute!

My bestie and I put them out in the hallway today after school.  {Her class made spiders too.} I can't wait for the students to see the display tomorrow!

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