Five for Friday! {End of the Year Catch Up Post with a Freebie!}

Why hello summer's so GOOD to see you!! Well friends week one of my summer break is in the books! It flew by, like they always do. My week consisted of baking, running, snuggling with my sweet little Dexter, cleaning, and I took a little impromptu trip to Target and the outlet mall yesterday...just because it was sunny out and it's summer and well I could! :) I didn't need a thing but I did score some deals at Target and Gap.... and the caramel frappacino I had while I was shopping was a nice little bonus! ;)

I'm a little behind on my blogging...The last week and half of school was crazy busy. I moved everything out so my floors could be waxed. But before that I decided I wanted to paint my room.... So I started painting like a mad woman before my floors were cleaned. 
I thought I would do a little catch up post and share a few things with you Five for Friday style! I'm linking up with Kacey for Five for Friday with five random things from the end of the school year.

One of my favorite end of the year traditions is camping out with a good book day. Students bring their favorite books and spend part of the day reading with their sweet buddies. I also invite them to participate in a book swap. They can bring up to five books they would like to trade for up to five new-to-you books. This is a great way for students to get some different books to read over the summer and it doesn't cost them a thing. 
Here is the pile of books that was brought in for the swap this year. I spy some good ones, don't you?
Another tradition for this day is enjoying some yummy s'mores! Because with only 2 s'more days left why not celebrate!?

This year for our last bulletin board craft we made this cutie patootie butterfly.
If your interested in this, this was another thing I did this week... I got it added to my tpt store. This craftivity pack comes with the craft template and lots of writing papers for K-3. It can also be used as a back to school craft. Suggestions for how to use are included in this little pack. 

As an end of the year gift I gave my students these bubble wands. Super simple, but fun, and the kids were so excited and thought I was the best! ha If your still looking for an end of the year gift for your students you can snag the tags as a FREEBIE HERE. :)

So I mentioned I was painting my room earlier in the post. I got a wild hair to paint my room. I painted it gray and I LOVE it. Do you see that terrible board on the far left? It's damaged and yucky looking and won't come clean. I have always covered it every year with bulletin board paper... but since it isn't cork I have to tape things up and then when I change things out the tape rips the paper and I can't stand the messy ripped paper and who wants to change paper every time you take something off the board?? Not this girl. So......I bought a big ole roll of cork and me and a few of my sweet teacher gal pals covered this board and a couple others in my room before we left for summer. And just like that I have a bulletin board friends! One that I can actually staple and push pin things too. Shut the front door I'm excited! It's little things... or well... a big roll of cork things... that make my teacher heart happy. :)

And.... I mentioned awhile back that I am changing my theme for the upcoming school year. I'm doing a camping/woodland friends theme. Before leaving for summer I just had to put up this new burlap fadeless paper with some of my new border! I'm loving it! I can't wait to add more and finish up the rest of the room. Those critters make my heart smile. SO.STINKIN.CUTE!!

Well friends, that's all I've got for now. Have a fabulous Memorial Day!


Non-Fiction Reading Gurus {Donors Choose & a DEAL!}

The past several years I have used Scholastic News in my classroom and love it! It is such a wonderful resource. I am able to cover so many standards by using the common core lesson plans and technology components that are included with the subscription to this awesome classroom newspaper.

We used Scholastic News this year to find the main idea and details.

 While learning about penguins and verbs, we used a Scholastic News to hunt for verbs. Students highlighted all of the verbs as we read through the great article about penguins. 

We then made an anchor chart with some verbs we found from the Scholastic News and added a few extras as well.

Students then used the verbs to help them write all about Penguins!

Another way we used it this past year was finding the main idea and details. We used one about David Shannon to help us do this.

This is just a few examples of the many different ways that I have used Scholastic News in my classroom in the past.

Scholastic News is such a great resource to add more non-fiction reading into your classroom. I am working to add more non-fiction titles to my classroom library, but still don't have no where near would I would like to have. Scholastic News definitely helps us cover tons of standards and be non-fiction reading gurus! :) Plus it's great to use with our thematic units such as penguins, fire safety, plants, Dr. Seuss, etc. just to name a few!

I would love to use Scholastic News again this year with my firsties. I recently posted a new Donors Choose project for a subscription to Scholastic News and Science Spin for my students to use for the upcoming 2016-2017 school year. I would be thrilled to get it funded so we can start using this great resource right away at the beginning of the new school year.

I have until June 2nd to get any donations MATCHED when using the code EMPOWER at checkout! Will you please help me?? For donating $10 to my Donors Choose project I will in turn GIVE you $25 worth of products{of your choice} from my tpt store. All you have to do is donate $10 and email me with your Donors Choose name that you donated under and include the names of the items from my tpt store that you would like! Easy peasy, lemon squeezy!!?? If you would like to donate more I will honor that deal for every $10 you donate.... so if you donated $20 then you would get $50 worth of products from my tpt store and so on! :) Check out my project HERE if you would like to help us. Don't forget to use the code EMPOWER at checkout!

Do you use Scholastic News in your classroom?? I would love to know how you use it! 


Psst...SNEAK PEEK at CTP's NEW Product Line!!

A big thank you to everyone who joined us for our CTP Exclusive Blogger product giveaway blog hop. Congratulations to Emily Levine for winning the Woodland Friends prize pack #1 from Creative Teaching Press that I was giving away on my blog! Emily I hope you love this super cute line of products as much as I do! :)

I've got a little secret to share with you...I have access to a secret landing page with all of the new Creative Teaching Press products that will be coming out in late May! Exciting right!!?? Click the image below to get a sneak peek of the newest items coming soon! AND while your there enter for a chance to win $50 worth of Creative Teaching Press products!

I'm loving all of the new items... but I'm super excited about the new magnetic decor strips!! What a great idea!! Magnetic strips can be used on any magnetic surface including magnetic whiteboards, magnetic bulletin boards, file cabinets, lockers, and steel doors. Magnetic border strips are reusable and can be easily cut with scissors to customize the length. These durable magnetic strips are sturdy and will last for years to come. I plan to put these around my door and can't wait!! This is such a great idea and will make snazzing up areas much easier and quicker!

Another item I'm excited about is the Woodland Friends Peek-Overs. I'm changing my theme this year to Woodland Friends collection and I can't wait to use these super cute peek overs to make a cute work display. I can't wait to share my room makeover with you! :)

Well what are you waiting for?? Head over to get an exclusive sneak peek of the newest items coming soon! AND while you're there don't forget to enter for a chance to win $50 worth of CTP products!!!


We Love Our Moms! {Mother's Day Freebie!}

Hi blog friends! We have been busy this week working on special gifts for Mother's Day! I wanted to share with you a couple of our gifts just in case you are needing something last minute that's pretty quick and simple...But moms are sure to LOVE! 

The first one I want to share about is one that I have been doing this one since I started teaching and it's my favorite! It's a hand print flower that doubles as a work/picture holder for the refrigerator. I found the idea sometime ago online and I can't remember where. :(

Sorry for the poor lighting!

I got my supplies at Wal-Mart... magnetic strips, jumbo craft sticks and clothespins. Simply get your students to make a hand print. (I let them pick which color) I free handed the stem and copied it onto green paper and laminated it and the hand print. Then I hot glued the craft stick to the stem then added the hand print. I hot glued the clothespin to the bottom of the the craft stick and then hot glued a magnetic strip. I add a label and students will sign their name. These turn out super cute and are a great keepsake!

CLICK HERE for the label I added to the back. :) Avery size 2" x 4" labels.

Here is another project that we have worked on this week that I shared about last year. To show our moms just how special they are and how much we love them, students worked on a simile mother's day poem and drew a pretty picture to go along with it. I attached the poem to one side of a piece of construction paper, attached the drawing to the other side, and then laminated for durability. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy! :) It's simple, but oh so cute and their responses are so sweet. I hope that these will be a hit with the moms of my firsties. The kids sure were proud of them.
 I loved reading the things they came up with to complete the poem. Some examples that they used... you are as funny as a clown, pretty as a rose, special as my teacher {melt my heart}, helpful as a nurse, smart as a mad scientist, cute as a monkey, and as special as a rhino. Apparently rhinos are pretty special! Who knew?? :)

If you are looking for a quick, simple, last minute project for your sweeties to work on for Mother's Day I just uploaded this as a freebie in my tpt shop. :)

What do your students make for their moms for mother's day??

I'm joining in on the huge teacher appreciation sale that's happening right now through May 4th! Everything in my little tpt store is 20% off! Plus you can use the code CELEBRATE to snag additional savings!! Happy Teacher Appreciation week!! 
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Have a great rest of the week! :)