...sharing strategies for teaching second graders...

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Don't Let the Pigeon...

My marvelous student teacher taught a lesson today on persuasive writing. She read Don't Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late between exploratory classes and lunch. When writing time rolled around, she told the children that we all have opinions and want to share them. She reminded them of the Pigeon story and how much they enjoyed it. Then she played this:
After watching the video clip twice, the children wrote their persuasive paragraph about whether they'd let the pigeon drive the bus trying to convince the reader to do the same. :) This was precious and hilarious at the same time. The children were sooooo excited and all of them except one finished. Even my struggling writers wrote! The one who did not finish has troubles. :( What a fantastic way to introduce persuasive writing! Try it! :)

Monday, February 27, 2012

Craaaazzzzzzzyyyy Day!

Wow! What a crazy day! We worked on Cause & Effect by reading Teach Us, Amelia Bedelia! and Play Ball, Amelia Bedelia! Thanks for sharing, Amy @ Step into 2nd Grade. Your post on Amelia Bedelia and the Baby was awesome! Did you share the cause and effect activities with the two stories above? I can't find where I found them... (sigh). It's been a  looonnnng day with Cause & Effect, PSA making, and Contraction Surgery! My children could NOT stop the talking today, but I know they were learning. They just chattered away about cause & effect, got even louder working on the story problems together, and couldn't even be STILL when they got their surgeon's masks on to perform Contraction Surgery.  We made the masks using paper and yarn (I forgot all about going to find some masks, so I improvised). I found some small bandaids in a teamie's room (she had a sub, but we often go in each other's closets) and also found some bandaid stickers that made for really cute contractions. I just hope I can find some more of those bandaid stickers! :) They worked rather well. I did get some pix...I'll paste some tomorrow...too tired tonight. Sweet dreams everyone. I'll update this post tomorrow with pix and more info... zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. :D

Friday, February 24, 2012

Kids Say the Darndest Things Linky Party

Jeannie at

is having a linky party! Join the fun...and please don't be offended by my student's comment. He was only a Kindergartener...

Monday, February 20, 2012

Denise @ Sunny Days in Second Grade is giving away...

Little Pockets! Check them out @ Sunny Days in Second Grade. I certainly hope to win! :) They'd certainly be put to quick use in my second grade class...we're studying cause and effect now!

Denise was my Valentine Bloggy Buddy and sent me such an awesome box of goodies...winning this would be the icing on the cake. The cake was already so sweet, though, that it doesn't require any icing. ;) Thanks, again, Denise! I'm still enjoying my goodies.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

A Bad Case of Stripes

Thanks to Amy Lemons @ Step into Second Grade for sharing this!  We were just beginning cause and effect when I found this project using A Bad Case of Stripes. I knew this story would be a good one, and honestly I just didn't want to do the Mouse & Cookie thing again. It's a great story, but I think even the children get burned out on it. I know they do it in first grade at our school, so that was my excuse to go with if I needed one! Par excellence!!

Check out Camouflage Camilla!

See Camilla Orange? ;) Somehow I got two
of this one...

Not everyone is finished...anyone have an idea why it takes
some of our sweeties soooooo long to write a paragraph or two? Yeah, I know...they're just immature, not ready, and all that...It just hurts my heart when some simply won't write even tho' I know they are capable. :*(  This was an amazing story idea, though!! Much thanks to whomever shared...I love it! :D

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day!

   What a marvelous day! It started out with my sweeties decorating their CapriSun boxes I blogged about yesterday. They were excited to get the party started so early! :) As soon as the boxes were decorated, everyone received his/her penpal letter from the wonderful Mrs. P! The excitement on the faces of my little sweeties was worth the hour drive on Sunday to deliver the letters we wrote for Mrs. P.'s students. I just hope our letters were 1/2 as exciting as the ones they wrote for us!

   At our regular exploratory class time, we got to go to a Valentine Dance in the gym. Students received a bag of popcorn. When they finished it, they danced away for about 45 minutes! Fabulous way to release some energy, especially with the cold snap we've had the last couple of days plus rain last night keeping us inside.
   We returned to our class and took turns putting Valentines in the now decorated boxes, went to lunch, returned to deliver more Valentines, and were called back to the gym for our annual teacher/student volleyball game. Finally, we returned to class and started our party! We had brownies, mini ice cream sandwiches, juice boxes (of course!), cookies, Cheetos, and about 8 different individually wrapped candies per student. (I made encouraged the children to take their candy home!)The children loved the penpal letters most of all! They seemed excited to write back and get more letters from our pals!
     I left school early enough to visit my chiropractor, go by Publix, then go to the minor emergency family medicine to get another antibiotic since I haven't shaken this crud yet. Please keep me in your prayers...I've had this since around Thanksgiving! :(

     Then I got home to open my Bloggy Valentine! Oh WOW! Denise @ Sunny Days in Second Grade sent me the most loveliest Valentine of all! Denise sent Ginger Peach White Tea~yum!, a domino Valentine pin, a necklace for St. Patty's Day, those sweet LOVE blocks (with XOXO on back), a sweet note, a heart lolly, and two cutie patootie clothespins. I love, love, love it all! Her note says her hubby talked her out of fancying up a stapler for me... :D That cracks me up! Actually, I don't have a fancied-up stapler...never even crossed my mind. ;) Thank you, Denise! I love your blog, and I'm not surprised how much I love everything you sent! :) The picture doesn't do it justice at all!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Liebster Award and Today...

Wow! Thanks, Ms. T. at Second Grade Math Maniacs for awarding me the Liebster Award.

I am honored! This award is given to blogs with 200 followers or fewer and is meant to give recognition and love to wonderful, upcoming blogs. Wow again! Thanks, Ms. T! I choose five blogs and pass on the Liebster Award. They are:
1. Mrs. Shepherd @ Shepherd's Shining Stars
2. Denise @ 2nd Grade Ponderings
3. Ms. Chrissy B @ Buzzing with Ms. B.
4. Sara @ Ms. Pagano's Place
5. Frau @ Half a Dollar in the Jar

Now to tell about my day! It was busy, busy, busy as usual in a second grade classroom. My student teacher helped soooo much, but we still didn't get it all finished! She's there Mondays and Wednesdays. I'm very thankful to have her with me! She just jumps right in wherever she thinks I need help and has been a Godsend! I still haven't gotten all my copies ready for tomorrow morning...even with her there which means I gotta get up and to school by 6:30 to get those done! I do have Conversation hearts ready for my children, as well as their penpal letters from the awesome Mrs. P! I can't wait to see their faces when the children get their penpal letters!

So, this evening my teamie (Leah) and I taped up Capri Sun boxes to make Valentine holders for our students. :) Pictures follow...yep, I got a little crazy with the camera. We had an assembly line going and it was amazing how quickly we knocked this out. We had a blast while we were doing it, too!

My brother brought me loads of paper when he worked at a printing company and I still have about ten rolls. It seems they have to recycle when the rolls get so close to the end because of the humidity of the paper. So, check with local printing companies. They seem happy enough to donate and the paper goes a loooooooonnnnnnggggg way! We use it for everything! Leah had considered spray painting the boxes red, but I remembered that if the temperature is below about 60 degrees, the paint won't dry. My brother found a shelf at the dump one year on Christmas Eve (he's always trying to save a dime!), went to Wal*mart and got spray paint (six cans), and tried to paint the shelf for me for that night when we had our family Christmas exchange. It took him four hours to get it dry with his spotlights on his carport, an extension cord, and his hair dryer. That is one of my favorite gifts of all time from him...the other being a grand piano keyring. I still want a baby grand! Oops...sorry, I digress again.

So, I cut the piece of the box out where the fingerholes were to make the slit for the Valentines to slide down into the box. Leah wrapped the boxes around, taped, and passed them for me to fold the ends down and tape. Our students will decorate their boxes tomorrow morning after reading their penpal letters and sharing them with their buddies. We have lots of cool Valentine activities to share, they have the Valentine Dance from 9:50 to 10:40, more fun in the classroom, cheerleaders and football players from the high school we feed into will be in the cafeteria at lunch, taking pictures of the students in groups of 4 or 5 buddies, a Volleyball game at 1:00, and our party begin at 1:30. Whew! Stay tuned tomorrow...I'll have pix of the decorated boxes and hopefully I'll find time to get my "You Know You're a Teacher" links ready for the linky party. ;)  Can't wait for you to see them all!

Sweet dreams!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

How I Met My Hunny...Linky Party!

So, I'm breaking the rule...blogging twice in one day. Well, it seems like another day...I stayed up late, got up early, went to church, stayed for the new member luncheon (even though I'm not officially a new member-yet), finally got home to check e-mail, and gotta run hour away to deliver Valentine/penpal letters that I didn't get in the mail soon know the life of a second grade teacher. The sweet children just had so much to do this week. I kept them hopping! Why do they sometimes HATE to write, and other times just write and write and write? It seems that when it's an assignment, they hate it. When it's writing notes back and forth, they love it. I think next time we'll write notes back and forth to explain the new information we're learning. Have any of you done that? Oh, I digress...
Ms. Chrissy B. @ Buzzing with Ms. B is having her first linky party!

How I Met My, Teddy Bear! The picture was taken about a year after we married, when he talked me into getting our first Chihuahua puppy, Cocoa! We'd been at the lake...see the windblown hair?

    A skating rink was built at the end of the highway upon which I live...five miles/minutes away. I loved skating and went every Friday and/or Saturday night (both if I could talk my parents into it). I met my hunny Teddy Bear there at age 15. I told my bff that I was going to marry him the first night I met him. Yep, followed through!
    Anyway, we dated on and off for 6 years. He dumped me once (right before Valentine's Day...after I'd made heart-shaped cakes and everything) so he could take out his secret love. She only wanted him to go and buy liquor for her (he was 18 at the time) and he quickly realized this. He called me back within five days, but OH NO! I would have none of that. I told him, of course I was planning to go out with other guys...that's what breaking up meant, right? He was free to do as he wanted, as was I! Oh wow! I cried for two weeks! :D It's funny now.
   During the time we were apart, he went and signed up to join the USNavy when he graduated from high school. He was gone three years. We dated on again, off again during that time as well. He always broke it off, never me. :*( I love, love, love him, you see.
   When he got out of the Navy, I decided I didn't need to see him...he'd broken my heart too many times. It took him about ten days to call me, just to wriggle back into my good graces. When the phone rang, M was there with me and wanted to answer the phone. She said, "Oh, it's a MAN!" I knew immediately it was my hunny Teddy Bear. He always had a deep voice. . .  still does. I had plans and told him he was welcome to go scooter pootin' around with my bff (different one from when I was 15) and me. She tried to leave and I threatened her if she did! ;)

     After many more stories, we finally married 2 months after my 21st birthday and 2 months before his 23rd birthday. We've been through lots and lots, but God has blessed us with good times that outweigh the bad. I am thankful for grace and love abounding in our marriage. One of the best blessings we received is our son. He was born on my Gramma's 84th birthday and we brought him home three days later, on our fifth wedding anniversary. I think of my hunny Teddy Bear as the "wind beneath my wings." I'm the extrovert, he's the introvert. He may not agree with all my crazy schemes, but most of the time he'll go along for the ride. He tells me I overextend myself (as does my mom), but he helps me out of the quandries in which I find myself. He builds cubbies and other fine wooden furniture for my classroom, he paints, he draws, he colors, he cuts laminating, ah, he's a jack of all trades!

    I could go on about him for days, but you get the picture. He welded for 30 years, but all the local welding jobs have gone to Mexico. Now he works part-time at Publix. Our son is an assistant manager and got his dad a job. My TB worries about making 1/3 his former salary and only working 12-20 hours weekly, but I remind him that he was understanding and supportive while I finished my M. Ed. and Ed. S. for just this support us if his job went south. He cleans the house, does laundry, and even loads and unloads the dishwasher. Just lately, he's started cooking! He told me before he left for work just now that he has soooo much to do tomorrow. Being a house-hubby is hard work and he doesn't know how I worked, took care of our son, and did all these chores all those years! What a smooze! :D I love him even more today than I did when I was 15. <3

Songs for Teaching

  So...I've blogged about our Genres Journey and how much my students love to sing and learn. Today, as I was "pinning" on Pinterest, I saw some songs teaching friendly letter, verb, adjective, and pronouns. WOW!! I've gotta get "K" involved again and write songs about nouns, adverbs, and some other stuff.

     For now, here are the copies I made for my students' Poetry on the link underneath the picture if you want it. Please leave a comment if you download. :) Thanks!

                                          Adjective Song,

                                       Friendly Letter,

                                              Pronouns, and
                                      Verbs in Action.
   They love to read/sing the poems and what an easy way to get the information stuck in their heads! soothes the soul! It is also something they already know, so it's a marvelous anchor activity! Hallelujah!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Fry Phrases

I just saw a post about Fry Phrases. I typed the 600 Fry phrases, copied them on bright yellow carstock with a couple of "KABOOM!"s for each 100, cut them into small strips (like french fries) and stored them in the little white cups with yellow lids that you get from "Go" cups...Oreos, Ritz cheese crackers (or peanut butter), etc. I bought extra packs of Oreos & Ritz cheese crackers to make more, put the cookies & crackers in freezer bags for hubby's enjoyment, cleaned out the containers, and labeled the top and bottom of with "Fry Phrases 1st 100" "Fry Phrases 2nd 100" etc. Here's a link to the first post...Fry Phrases ,but I never shared the anyone who wanted could use it. Click First 600 Fry Phrases to get it.

My children love playing "Fry Phrases KABOOM!" It's just like any other "KABOOM!" Pull out a "fry" and read it, keep it unless you pull "KABOOM!" If that happens you lose your fries, but continue game until time is called or all fries have been read. I like this because the Fry phrases get harder with each increment of 100. So your children reading at early second grade level get something that is a little challenge...and can enjoy playing, too. According to Fry, the first 300 words contain 67% of what students read. WOW! I hope this helps your students. It really does help mine. My lowest reader told me Friday that the Fry phrases help and he loves to play! :)

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Today and Currently February

Anyone else have a problem with students wanting to cram everything and I mean EVERYTHING! into their desks? Well, today Miss L. was ripping and tearing everything she took out of her desk. I told her, "No ma'am! You leave that on top of your desk for me to check." She left quite a bit...she also left a little bit somewhere else...wanna guess? Take a look...

Of course I sent these pix to her daddy...but it sort of got me tickled, you know? She's a cutie patootie, spunky little redhead and I love her dearly! I just can't quite believe she did this with papers that had her NAME on them. She's too smart to do that... (sigh).  

Anyone wanna 'splain to me how to do this without having to convert it to a picture? I feel so duhhhhh...

Sunday, February 5, 2012


I found this surfing the web the other day and it really speaks to me. I just wanted to share. I'm so glad Jesus is my lifeguard. I just wish I didn't get caught up in the moment and forget to lean on Him. Here's praying that we all remember to "lean on Jesus!" Enjoy DC Talk...they're one of my favs! :)