Mother's Day Freebie

Hop over and visit me at Owl-ways Be Inspired today to grab a little Mother's Day FREEBIE!

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Must-Read Monday {Chocolate Socks}

Last week we had a special author visit from Holly Durst.  Do you recognize that name?  Of course, our students only know her as the author of this book, but the teachers know her from...
Yep, she was on one of our favorite reality shows.  Two, actually, as she went on to be on Bachelor Pad where she met her husband, Blake, who just so happens to be a dentist here in our town. They're kind of local celebrities, so when Holly emailed me to ask if she could come visit our school and read her book - well, of course!

She was just as sweet and cute in person, and her book is just precious.  It's a short, imaginative tale of following your dreams.  In the book, Holly, combines her two favorite things - chocolate and socks - into one to make her dream come true!
After reading her book, she opened the floor for questions - and boy, did she get some!  It's a good thing that off-the-wall questions are her favorite part of school visits, but did she really wake up that morning thinking that she needed to know how old she is in dog years??  #ikidyounot  #sigh

This book is perfect for K-2 and would be a great springboard for getting children to combine their own favorite things to come up with an invention of their dreams.

If you're interested in using the book with your students, I've created a little planning page to help them get started with their ideas.  You can download it below.

I'd love for you to link up and share something you've read lately!

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Five for Friday {A Weekly Recap}

A quick little recap of our week...

On Monday, we had an author come visit to read and autograph books.  I'll post about that book (along with a freebie) on Monday for my Must-Read Monday linky, but I'll give you a little clue...
This week was kind of a went by super quickly, but hey, I'm not complaining....SIX more weeks!  We still have a LOT to squeeze in though, so it's no surprise that we are hitting multiple standards with each activity we do.
In this activity, we hit identifying properties of solids, using adjectives to describe, partitioning rectangles into rows and columns, and writing similes.  Whew!  They rocked it, though!
Speaking of similes, we're preparing for our poetry picnic celebration and created our Simile Sandwiches.  These are always one of my favorite displays...and they're similes for each layer of the sandwich were AMAZING!  These are a part of our best-selling Poetry Pizzazz unit.

We also wrote "sandwich poems" as one of our displays for this unit.  I love that students have the choice of using syllabication or rhyming to write these poems.  And, we had some very creative ants!
Since we just finished our Economics unit, we're holding our "Madden's Marketplace" on Monday.  As usual, I combine a lot of skills with this unit celebration, and I'm working on a new product for it....I have students become producers as they create a good from paper to sell at our market.  They have to write persuasive commercials to convince consumers to buy their products.  Then, they become consumers!  Well, there's a lot more to it, but you get the idea!  Today students started bringing in their products and they were AMAZING!  So, so creative...
More on our Marketplace next week!

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Must-Read Monday {Poetry}

We are in the midst of our poetry study right now.  Have I ever mentioned how much I LOVE teaching poetry?  Today, I thought I would share some of my favorite picture books to use while teaching students how to read and write this genre.

I hope you'll check these out for your poetry unit!  What are you reading this week??  And, don't forget to go enter my Fairy Tale Frenzy giveaway!!

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Fairy Tale Frenzy Giveaway

Spring Break is over.  Seven more weeks until summer.  It's going to be a magical seven weeks in our classroom.  Thanks to Fairy Tales.

I've always loved teaching Fairy Tales and I've had updating my Fairy Tales unit on my to-do list forever.  It finally happened over spring break and can I just say that I am more excited than ever to teach this genre!

Here's a sneak peek at the unit....

It's filled with activities that are aligned to common core standards that are also fun and engaging.  There are lots of craftivities, games, foldables, a glyph, ideas for a royal ball celebration, and more!

I'm giving away this new pack along with our already existing Fairy Tales pack (which is Cinderella-based) to one lucky winner.

To win BOTH of these units, just enter below.  A winner will be announced on Wednesday!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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Must-Read Monday {Spring Break Edition}

Finally.  I am on Spring Break.  Finally.  And that, folks, is why this linky is a bit late being posted yesterday.  Mr. Madden and I went to The Masters yesterday (blog post about THAT tomorrow).  It wore me out.  Let's just say I haven't been outdoors that long since the beach last summer.  An outdoor girl I am not.  So, last night, when we go home I crashed.  And, this morning I slept late, showered late (I'm proud I actually did that), and have been slow going.  My entire spring break cannot be like this.  My to-do list is WAY too long for that.  But day one, I'm letting myself relax.

With that said, I'm starting a new book.  A WHAT?  Yep.  A book.  Just for me.  I love summer when I'm able to read several books a week.  I'm hoping to get through a couple this week.  We'll see.

First up.
I read the first two books long ago, but the third book wasn't out yet.  And, well, it's been buried on my to-read list since then.  Since I saw the Divergent movie last week, I'm inspired to dig this one from the pile and jump in!  I've heard of people being disappointed in this one, but I'm hopeful.

I'm not sure what I'll read next.  I really want a "can't-put-it-down" series.  I'm a HUGE suspense fan (think Gone Girl), so if you have any suggestions, I'd love to hear them!

What are you reading this week?

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Rain Gutter Bookshelves {A Bright Idea}

 Many years ago, I saw these amazing bookshelves made from rain gutters.  I always wanted them in my classroom.  They are PERFECT for that small space under your board that is usually pretty "unusable."  But, I had a different idea...

My students are always wanting to take AR tests on books that I read aloud.  I've always had a great system for books that they read independently, but for read-alouds....not so much.  They never knew how to spell the titles and once one student grabbed the book to test on it, it would be misplaced and other students couldn't find it.

Problem solved!  I had my husband make me two 3 ft. rain gutter bookshelves to go right above our laptop station so that I could place books read aloud in them.  Now, the books are there for all students to see and test on!

It also makes for a great "showcase spot" for themed books, such as an author study.

Here's how I...okay, hubs...made them.  

We bought a 10 foot rain gutter from Lowe's.  We cut it into 3 ft sections.  We chose to spray paint it red to match my room.  We used two endcaps for each gutter and 3 braces.  On the back of each brace, we added velcro.  Heavy duty velcro.  Seriously...the sturdiest velcro you can find.  I found mine in the section with the Command Hooks (industrial strength is best)!  That's it! {Here's the actual link to the tutorial we found on Pinterest and used.}

We put the velcro on the three braces...
and attached it to the wall.  Easy peasy!  One thing that I really love is that it is removable, so if I really need that wall space for something, the shelves can pop right off. 
And then back on! :)
So practical, so easy, so versatile!  How could you see yourself using these in your classroom?

If you enjoyed this bright idea, be sure you are following me on Instagram, Facebook, and TpT.

For more Bright Ideas from 150 bloggers, please browse through the link-up below by choosing the topic/grade level that interests you.

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