Mother's Day Bath Salts & More

1. Happy Mother's Day! This year we decided to honor our moms, or other special lady, with a spa themed gift. The craft seen here is from Fluttering Through First Grade. Isn't this just the most adorable craft you've ever seen? It makes me smile just looking at it!

We also made the coupon book that is included in the packet. Click on the link above and it will take you to the E-SPA-cially for Mom Craft Giftivity. Put it on your wish list for next year.

2. Next we made bath salts for our moms using Epsom Salt, baking soda, soap dye, and lavendar oil. I ordered the soap dye and lavendar oil from Amazon. The kiddos got to choose from one of three colors: peach, lilac, or sea foam green. The craft was fun, but making the salts was the best part! 

While the class worked on the craft, I call one child at a time to the teacher table to scoop and measure the dry ingredients. Then, he/she squeezed four drops of soap dye onto the mixture. I added a drop of lavendar oil and the kiddo stirred until the salts were mixed to his/her satisfaction. My room smelled great too!

3. Are you familar with this web site? If not, you should be. It's free to access many popular fiction and nonfiction books for your class. My student teacher used it in one of her lessons...that's how I learned about it. 

It's where I found this book for science class...

...which was perfect because we are incubating chicken eggs in the science lab and learning about the life cycle of a chicken.

4. I designed this life cycle craft using a paper plate, brad, construction paper, and a life cycle worksheet. I just free handed some wing tracers for the kids to trace on yellow construction paper. I die cut yellow circles for the head and orange hexagons for the beak. I used a paper cutter to cut strips of orange paper for the legs and I just free cut stacks of chicken feet with a large pair of scissors. It was the perfect craftivity for the kids during the last hour of the day after Super Kids Day (field day). I saw a similar style life cycle craft of a lady bug on the second grade hallway that inspired this craft. 

5. And, last...we've been learning how to be researchers. Can you believe the school library had this many grade appropriate books about dogs?

We started with a KWL chart.

Then the children worked in pairs to investigate the breed of dog that they wanted to learn more about. 

Finally, we decided to display what we learned on manila paper. This is my example. I forgot to take pics of the kids' work. 

And that's pretty much what we've been up to lately. 

Less than four weeks to go!!!!!!!

May Currently

We've made it to May! As school years go that's a VERY BIG DEAL. The only thing better than a May Currently is a June Currently :-)

If you have any great gift ideas for a student teacher, please share by leaving a comment below! She wants to teach first grade. 

If you've visited the Grand Canyon, I'd love to here your thoughts on that too. Any recommendations?

Liebster Award

An award? What?! Me? Fun!

Alexis over at Mrs. Hudgeons Hears a Who and Mrs. M at Color Me Kinder nominated me for The Liebster Award. The Liebster Award is an award given to new bloggers (less than 200 followers) who have amazing content to share and link up with other bloggers. 

Here are the questions I was given to answer as part of the award:

1. Why and how long ago did you start blogging?
I started blogging almost two years ago after I accepted a job at an elementary school. After ten years in middle school, I wanted to try something new. I thought blogging would be an excellent way to document my transition from sixth grade to first grade.

2. What one word sums up the heart of your blog and why?
Passion. I'm passionate and excited about what I do. I know my blog really only shows classroom highlights, not the stuff that happens that leaves me scratching my head in bewilderment. But when I look back on it years from now, I want to remember the good stuff! Plus, I like to read blogs that inspire, and that's my goal, to inspire other teachers. 

3. Is there something you learned late in your blog journey that you wish you knew before?
I didn't realize how time consuming it is to keep a blog going. I've done a better job keeping it updated this school year than last school year, but I still pretty much blog "on the fly." My goal for next year is to have a plan and some blogging goals. Fingers crossed. 

4. What is your favorite past time other than blogging?
If you take my children out of the equation, then my favorite past time is planning. Crazy right??? I am a Pinterest-aholic and I have an Amazon Wish List of professional development books like you wouldn't believe! I think I am meant to work in Curriculum & Instruction one day. I'd rather prepare than implement (#teacherproblems). The best thing about summer vacation (other than spending time with my family, sleeping late, and actual vacations) is PLANNING WITHOUT DEADLINES! Planning is so much more fun during the summer than during the school year. Thinking about re-organizing my Pinterest boards this summer makes me smile :-)

5. How many hours per week do you dedicate to your blog?
I have four children, so I don't actually dedicate or designate a certain amount of time to the blog. I just blog when I can. Maybe two or three hours a week. 

6. What category of blog posts do you enjoy the most?
Right now I'm into all things guided math, so I love to read posts about how other teachers implement guided math rotations or what they are using in math tubs. I also like it when teachers share cute craftivities. I just love to be inspired! Last year I was really interested in posts about Daily Five or Whole Brain Teaching. So it just depends on what I'm focused on at the moment.

7. Where does your blog inspiration come from?
My classroom. 

8. Which post that you have written are you most proud of?
Comments make me happy. I feel like if a teacher took the time to comment on a post, there must have been something useful in it! This post about Word Work only got one comment, but that one comment made me feel like the post was helpful for another teacher.

9. Is there a post you have been planning to do, but have been postponing for awhile?
I've been meaning to do a post on positive behavior intervention  and support for months but it just hasn't happened.

10. Which idea from a blog would you like to try for yourself?
Just about anything I see on Tunstall's Teaching Tidbits. Next year I'm going to try a calendar binder inspired by her Rise & Shine binder. You can a little about the binder in this post.

Here are my nominations!

Here are the rules for accepting:

1. In your post link to my blog through my button or a link as a shout out and follow my blog!

2. Answer the questions I answered above.

3. Nominate 5-11 blogs of your choice that have less than 200 followers.

4. Let your nominees know they have been nominated and provide them with a link to your post so they can accept!

5. Last, but not least, comment on my post with a link to your acceptance of the award!