My Teacher Crush!!!

I just HAD to write two posts today because I am so excited to share about my little weekend trip. The craziest thing happened to me two days after I posted my "Top Ten Essentials Every Bucket Filler Should Know" principles. My husband came home with two tickets to Ron Clark's The End of Molasses Classes Book Release Par-tay!!!! Words can not even begin to express just how excited I was: 1) because I seriously LOVE Ron Clark (my husband is totally ok with this little teacher crush) and 2) what better way to get SUPER pumped about the school year than by soaking up all of Ron's amazing and NEVER ending passion and energy?!? 

So last night, we traveled to the big time ATL and let me tell the words of Ron Clark..."The party was hoppin'!"  They rolled out the red carpet...literally!!!! We were greeted/interviewed/photographed with some of the RCA students and they are beyond PRECIOUS! I even remembered several of them from my visit to RCA last September. Ron was at his best and of course got us completely FIRED UP for the school year. The RCA students performed and then we celebrated the night away! I must say...this was the perfect beginning for a new school year and I am pretty sure that I am already 3/4 of the way through his new book! Go ahead and plan a little trip to Barnes&Noble and pick up this must read for all educators!!! Trust will finish it in a day...TOPS! It consists of the most inspiring, yet to the point solutions and stories not only for educators but also for parents. There is a BIG chance that many of his solutions for parents will be included and HIGHLIGHTED :0) in my Welcome Back Packet! Seriously, this is a book you will not want to miss out on! 

Here are a few pictures from the party: (Another little camera had a full battery and completely DIED when we arrived. Thank GOODNESS for my phone. Still, the pictures are not that great! Needless to say...a new camera is on the way!)

My Teacher Crush...Ron Clark! :)

                                       Well, I actually have two teacher crushes. ; )
                     Me, Ron Clark, My Amazing Husband (who also happens to be a teacher)

                                            The amazingly talented Kim Bearden

Since I am already in LOVE with this book, I created a little list of my "Top Ten Favorites" from  The End of Molasses Classes! Be Inspired! :)

Beboppin' Birthdays and TPT SALE!!!!

Beboppin' Birthdays is now on TPT and you can pick it up here! :)
If you left a comment and added my little button, I will be sending your copy today so be on the lookout! :)

To celebrate the beginning of what is yet to be the most fabulous year yet and to join all of the other TPT sales, I will be running a sale in my TPT store all week (Aug. 1-5) with an extra 20% off each item! So, go pick you up some goodies! I am also going to be adding two more units within the week:

Second Grade Word Work

Shiver Me "Time"bers

Thank you so much for all of your support and sweet comments since this new little blog began! You are the best! :)

Craft-A-Holic + Pinterest = A Force to be Reckoned With

I have really been getting my craft on over the past few days and I am just lovin' every minute of satisfying my addiction! Seriously, I LOVE to craft and am totally obsessed with it! I have always enjoyed making, creating, gluing, painting, etc. etc. etc.! My mom owned a craft business when I was a little girl and I was always "that child" that had the biggest bows (of course I had one to match EVERY outfit), the laciest ( that a word?) socks, and was accessorized to the MAX! But I swear...not in an ugly way! She would absolutely kill me if she thought I was insinuating that all of her hard work was tacky! It really wasn't! My mom continues to be an inspiration to me this day. You know that saying about turning junk into joke, this women can create anything out of nothing.  I am pretty sure that my kids love her even more than I do...if that is possible. She spends every Wednesday volunteering the WHOLE day in my classroom. My kids seriously have minor panic attacks when she is not there for some reason! They just can't get enough of her and she has helped so many of them reach their true potential!  

So...I guess I can thank my sweet Mama for passing on the "Crafty" gene! Now, mix that gene with some Pinterest browsing and oh dear...I get the itch to create! Pinterest is most definitely a craft addicts place to satisfy all of their needs! HA! I already have a list (it may or may not be a mile long....don't judge) of things that I want to do for each holiday season, ways to decorate my house, and of course ideas for my classroom. Well, since I am a "See and Do" kind of person, that is exactly what I have been occupied with (in my free time) over the past few weeks. I thought I would share a few things that I have been working on just in case you don't have...Pinterest! {Gasp, Clutch Chest} So many of these ideas are Pinspired (Inspired By Pinterest)! :) I have also linked some great tutorials just in case, me...are CRAFT-TASTIC! 

Author's Chair Face Lift
I have been dying for an authors chair in my room. Up until this year, my students have used my directors chair but it just did not exhibit that "cool factor" that was I looking for! Thanks to Pinterest, paint, a feather boa, and a two hour long Bachelorette episode, I turned this...
into THIS!!!!

 And the best part? It was super easy and almost impossible to mess up! You just go with whatever patterns you creative and DEFINITELY finish it off with Mod Podge! That is the absolute best "topcoat" for thick paint! I am pretty excited about using this chair in my new Rock -n- Roll room!

Rock Star Runway / Our "Red Carpet"
I am so blessed to be in a very tech savvy district where each room is equipped with it's own Smart Board. Our custodial staff also built wooden boxes for the primary grades so that our students could actually reach the Smart Board and it could fulfill is interactive duties! Last year, I tried covering the box with fabric which = fail! Kids will be kids and while sitting on the carpet would pick at it little by little. It DROVE ME INSANE!  This year, I had an idea to request an extra box and turned it into our Red Carpet Rock Star Runway!
Another easy little project. I Painted the boxes red and added shiny gold records that I spray painted! I also put a THICK coat of Mod Podge over the records so that they will not "catch" one of my kiddos feet as they are walking to the SB!

Beboppin Birthday Display
If you read my post from yesterday, you saw the way that I am choosing to celebrate birthdays in my classroom this year. I was trying to decide how to display my little ipods. I went to visit my parents house and went up to my old room to grab something and SAW IT! My old Elvis poster in all of his glory framed and everything! HA! I knew he would be a perfect fit in our rockin' classroom. With a little paint and some ribbon, I created a fun little display for our Beboppin' Birthday ipods! I am going to hang each ipod with the use of the clothespins!
Here is how I did it:
Pegboard Space Saver
I love space savers and since my classroom is a tad bit smaller this year, I am loving this idea to store craft/school supplies. This is most definitely a Pinterest inspired project. I so thought that I saw a tutorial online so I did not bother with taking step by step pictures. I can not locate that little tutorial so thank goodness this little DIY is very easy. All you need to do is drill holes in your plastic cups and attach the cups to the pegboard using zip ties. I am still searching for that tutorial so when I find it, I will post it for all of you! 

I used the chalkboard paint to create a little label and attached some cute little ribbon. Another very, very easy little DIY! 

Glitter Clothespins
A Rock Star classroom would not be complete without a little glitter. So, I found this little tutorial on pinterest (which is amazing by the way) and created this sparkly little craft for my ELA wall to hold my posters, signs, etc. Click on the picture to find the tutorial and below is my creation. SO, so easy and cheap!

This is a horrible picture but they turned out to look exactly like what you see above! So cute and fun!

Well, these little DIY's should keep you busy for a good while! Thank goodness it's Saturday! Feel free to email me if you need further explanation or help with any of the above projects!  I promise to post pictures of my whole week! {Fingers Crossed!}

Have a restful weekend and if you haven't already, don't forget to enter in my GIVEAWAY for a chance to win two of my TPT units. You can get all of the info on the giveaway right here!


For starters...all I can say is WOW! I realized that on yesterday's post I put Happy Monday?!? OH.MY.WORD!  I should try to go into great detail to explain myself (MAJOR grad school test, 200 page book to read, book critique to write, classroom to decorate, planning for a little trip this weekend, house cleaning, etc. etc. etc.) BUT I won't! :)  I hope that I didn't terribly confuse any of you out in blog world and make you check yourself a thousand times to see if it was indeed Thursday instead of Monday! Seriously!?! Ay...yi...yi!!! face is no longer red with embarrassment sooooo....on to bigger and better things! BIRTHDAYS!!!!  Oh how I LOVE to celebrate birthdays. I tell my husband that it is my birthday month rather than just one day...hey a girls got to try right?!? As I was racking my brain over the past few weeks about how I was going to tie birthdays into my Rock-n-Roll theme, I got an email from one of my sweet little bloggy friends and she had an AMAZING idea! We decided that I would create since she came up with the idea! So, here you have it...BEBOPPIN' BIRTHDAYS! How cute is that?!? {Thank you Hillary!!! A BIG shout out goes to you and your awesome idea!!!} 

For display, you can write your students name and birthday under the correct month and display under the above sign.
OR...if you want to get really crafty, you an display the students pictures in each ipod. Boy do I just L.O.V.E. Pinterest. Here is an idea that has been popping up all over that site! This is from Erica Bohrer's Classroom. If you haven't seen her blog, you are missing out! She is fabulous!

I have also included a few other little cutsies in this birthday kit:

Birthday Balloons for Pixie Sticks
These are the Rock-n-Roll version, but there are generic themed balloons as well! 
There are several versions of these pixie sticks swirling around the internet but the above picture comes from What The Teacher Wants (another crazy amazing blog!)

Birthday Buttons
Again, the kits contains buttons for a Rock-n-Roll theme or a generic theme that could fit into any classroom! 

How can I get it?
Last night, I found a lovely little tutorial describing how to create a blog of course I just HAD TO!!!! I would love for you to snatch it up. It is located underneath the "followers" section of my blog and looks a little something like this:
To show my overwhelming gratitude for you adding the shenanigans to your blog, I will email you a copy of Beboppin' Birthdays!!!! When you comment, please be sure to leave your email address so I can send this your way!

Now...let me try this one more time because yesterday = epic fail! HAPPY FRIDAY!!!!!! Right?!? ; )

You'll Flip Over This!!!

Raise your hand if it totally stresses you out (not to mention messes with your teacher ADD) when you have a trillion anchor charts hanging all over your room!!! But they are just too important/meaningful to take down...right?!? These charts truly are beneficial when the students are connecting information, sparking interest/memory, maintaining attention, etc. etc. etc...BUT I hope that I am not the only one who feels a tad guilty about throwing all of these charts away simply because they clutter up my space! I seriously just can't handle it. If you can totally relate to I have an idea for you and here is all you need:

Composition Notebook for Each Student

I just LOVE this adorable little pink camera but any ol' camera will do just fine!

There are so many variations of these little go with whatever you like! :)


 all of your fabulous "Hooks to Hang Your Knowledge On" (A.K.A. - Anchor Charts, Flip Charts, Poster Boards, Crazy Pieces of Paper Flying Around the Room...whichever you prefer)
I am so wishing that I had a few pictures of some anchor charts that I created last year but can not locate any at the moment...sad day! :(  {Insert mental image of an anchor chart HERE} :), once you have these materials (most of which are probably already located in your classroom) you are ready to go! Now, I don't want to overwhelm we will just take it step by is how you can eliminate all of those crazy amazing charts!  :)

Step 1: Make Anchor Chart (I think I only create about 10...per day!)
Step 2: Take a Picture of Each Chart that You Make (or at least the ones that you think your kiddos may need to see again/hold valuable information)
Step 3: Print out the picture and make a copy for each student
Step 4: Have the students glue the picture of the anchor chart in their
"Flipin' Out Notebook" under the correct section.

THE END!!!!!!!!!!!

Are you kidding me? I was definitely kidding about the overwhelming part earlier! It can't get any easier than that AND poof...all of those charts disappear and only the necessities remain! Just call me a magician!  :) Ha!

One last thing...where do those little tabbies come in? Have your students (or a parent volunteer) divide the notebook into sections for the content areas that you would like to include. I divide my notebooks into Reading, Phonics, Writing, Math, Science, and Social Studies. That way when referencing a specific chart, the students can quickly flip to the section in which that chart would be located. This is a great resource for students and will completely eliminate all of those guilty feelings about trashing all of your beautiful charts! I hope this will help you as much as it helps me! Ok...time to flip out! :)  Happy Thursday Bloggy Friends!

Don't forget to enter in my GIVEAWAY below for two math units from my TPT store (Ending August 3rd)!!!!

The Triple Threat!!!!! New Unit, GIVEAWAY and FREEBIE

First of all, I just want to say thank you, thank you, THANK YOU to all of my amazing followers! You have all been so sweet welcoming this new little blog into your world! You are all so AWESOME!

Camp Out...Number Style is finished and ready for action! I am so excited about incorporating a "camp" theme during our first few weeks of math. This unit includes basic number and place value concepts, application and practice...PERFECT for whipping those kiddos back into shape at the beginning of the year! :) Here is a little peek at what this unit includes! You can head on over to my TPT store to pick it up!  

One thing that I am a HUGE fan of is differentiation in the classroom! So, most activities include two - three levels of difficulty. You can see an example of how the unit levels work in this little "snapshot" of my math camp out called "Odd and Even Roast."
So, to celebrate my first bloggy unit and the opening of my Teachers Pay Teachers Store, I am hosting a little giveaway. I will be giving two lucky winners their very own copy of Camp Out...Number Style along with my upcoming unit Shiver Me "Time"bers which is a nice little collection of all things time! Time with pirates??? How can you resist?!? That means you will get:

How Can I Win?!?
There are 4 ways to enter and one extra way to earn another camp out FREEBIE!
1) One Entry for Following My Blog
2) One Entry for Following my TPT Store
3) One Entry for Reposting this Giveaway on Your Blog (You will also receive another little camp out freebie when you do this! So, when you comment...leave your email!)
4) One Entry for Adding Me to Your Blog Roll

Please leave a comment for each entry that you complete. The giveaway will end next Wednesday, August 3rd at midnight (for all of you night owls)!  I will announce the winner on Thursday! Good Luck!!!

Blog Alert!!!! Ucreate with Kids

Don't you just LOVE when you stumble across an amazingly inspiring blog with lots of ideas to keep those creative juices flowing??? If you are like me (CRAFT-A-HOL-IC), then you are going to love Ucreate. Ucreate is a blog with crazy awesome craft ideas and tons of inspiration for all of those people like me who just L.O.V.E. to get their craft on! Well, they have now added Ucreate with Kids! This is a perfect resource for stay at home mommies, parents looking for creative ideas to get through these last few weeks of summer :) and of course, for TEACHERS! This will also be a fabulous resource to provide for those parents who are always asking about things that they can do at home with their child.

Ucreate with Kids is a collection of adorable crafts, projects and teaching ideas! If you like what you see below, you will definitely want to check out Ucreate with Kids and become a follower...ASAP!!!

If you like it...Click it!!! You'll be so glad you did!
DIY Finger Paints

How cute are these little guys??? The students would go CRAZY over these during a unit on plants!

Nothing like making outer space hands on!

Too Cool!!!

A Delicious Download...The "Sweet Life" Candy Bar

Summer usually = a zillion weddings! Now don't get me wrong...I LOVE weddings! The new "fashion statement" and "crowd pleaser" at weddings this summer has been the Candy Bar and I have one word for that...SWEET! Since the wheels of my teacher brain NEVER stop turning, while at one of the fabulous weddings this summer, I had an idea! Since I have never really liked my reward system in my classroom and because kids LOVE candy...why not create an improved reward system. I say improved because...duh...everybody gives their kids candy every now and again.  :)

In order to stay in tune with my "stylish" side, I have created a candy bar reward system for the classroom. You can download that HERE! It explains how it will work inside! I am hoping it will prove to be as much of a hit with my kids as it was with all of those sugar craving adults this summer! Enjoy this little treat!

Now...back to the Bachelorette! Who is on Team JP????


New Years Resolutions... Say WHAT?

I know what you are thinking...hold is NOT even August yet much less January. You are so RIGHT...THANK GOODNESS! However it is that time of year when for teachers everything seems to be going matter how organized you are! There are 200 books to level,  a million things to write 20 little names on, documents to create, shelves to organize, stacks and buckets of supplies...EVERYWHERE and paperwork that seems to NEVER end! We have all been there...right??? Although many would totally cringe at the thought of all of that madness...teachers become totally excited and motivated! Not about the work, of course, but about the anticipation of meeting new students and inspiring them to learn and grow each day.  In the spirit of a new year, The Clutter Free Classroom is hosting a New Year Resolution Linky Party and I just simply couldn't resist.

My new year resolutions are short and sweet...just the way I like them!

1) Inspire and Be Inspired
This year, I am so excited to be part of the party goin' down in the blog world. I can not wait to use the amazing resources that so many of these fantastic blogs have to offer. Not only will this wealth of creativity inspire powerful instruction, it will also inspire students to achieve! My hope is that I too, can be of inspiration to other teachers, parents, and the best second graders of all!

2) Keep Calm and Teach On
Whew...this will be a toughy! : ) Why is it that my high level of energy is always mistaken for being stressed!?! I typically tend to be a pretty calm person who only has 5,000 things going on at one time! Hey...don't we all??? This year, it is my goal to simply do as the saying says..."Keep Calm and Teach On" remembering that my job is to pour into the lives of second graders each day by making learning exciting and fun!

3) Never Forget the Reason Behind the "Madness"
Education is constantly changing and I have heard so many educators who are infuriated with new policies, laws, standards, future plans and dare I say it...budgets!  I know these things can get everyone a little frustrated and down at times, BUT...I hope to approach my classroom each day remembering WHO I am there for and my purpose behind doing what I love!  

So, if anybody has already caught the new year "butterflies" head on over and be inspired by some fabulous educators and their new year resolutions! And...a little something for the road that I thought was too funny but SO true!!! Let's hear it for a new year!!!

MORE MP3 Cubby Numbers

I have received several e-mails about my MP3 student numbers and your need for numbers beyond the 25 that I had originally posted. I am SO glad that these have helped some of you out as you begin to set up your new classrooms for this quickly approaching year! Many of you have said that you have more than 25 students and so you NEED MORE NUMBERS!!! :) You can click on the picture above to download numbers 1-50 (if you have more than 50 students in your classroom...(a) I am sending up a few prayers for you...DAILY and (b) e-mail me and I will be more than happy to create more numbers!

I have so many DIY projects and classroom materials that are in the works! As soon as this final grad paper is complete I will get those up and running for you! I am also excited about posting my "Camp Out...Number Style" unit next week! This is a great unit to get your students excited about math with a little review and a whole lot of fun! I hope that everyone is having an amazing weekend!!!! Check back soon for more materials!

Rock Star Profiles and Record Breaking Word Wall

If you haven't figured out how excited I am about my Rock -n- Roll theme by looking at my blog let me help you out : ) ...I am SUPER, SUPER excited about such a "rad" theme!  I am thinking my students (including boys) will just LOVE all of the rockin' details! Here are just a few things that I have been working on!

At the beginning of the year, what teacher doesn't enjoy getting to know all of the 20+ crazy, energizing, silly, quirky, loving, ADORABLE personalities that walk into the classroom?!? This year, my students will be creating a "VIP...All Access" pass to tell me just a little about the things that they enjoy. My favorite part about this activity (well, along with getting to know my students) is that we are going to go all out and make these profiles just like the real deal (but on a little larger scale). After the students have completed their profile, we are going to attach a lanyard to make it look just like the real thing! I think that this will be a great way to get our year rockin'! ; ) You can click on the picture above to grab this little freebie!
I have also been working and WORKING in my room to pull it all together and I promise to have pictures up very soon.  One little project that I just finished was my new word wall. I managed to dig and find some old records (not mine of course...I am WAY too young for that!) ; )  and decided to create my "Record Breaking" Word Wall!  I attached dicut letters to some cute scrapbook paper and voila! Perfection. They are so cute even if I do say so myself!  

                                              Please excuse the cluttery mess in the cubbies! :)