Monday, December 16, 2013

It's Beginning to Look a lot Like Christmas

It really is! Here's a little look at the weather we have here. A big snowy mess! But I love it.

This is my favorite time of the year… must why my wedding date is set for December 6, 2014! It's less than a year away, 355 days to be exact. But who's counting??

Last week, the sisters and I went to a wreath making class. Who knew about a million strips of curled paper, pins, and styrofoam would turn out so adorable! Our fingers were hurting but we each have a cute handmade decoration and lots of laughs to look back on.

Our classrooms are also all decked out for the holidays. We've been working hard on cute craftivities. Check them out…

Friday we celebrated Polar Express Day! Everyone wore their pjs. We enjoyed the story while sipping chocolate milk and nibbling on Oreos. Then we made a beginning, middle, and end train. We used a bunch of the activities from our Polar Express pack and ended the day with the movie. Such fun!

We also read, Merry Christmas Splat! We made inferences about what we thought was in that really big present… hmmm.

The Elf on the Shelf is HUGE with our kiddies. It's all they talk about so we wrote about what it takes to be a good elf and found this craft to go with it!

We have also been working on synonyms and antonyms. They make for such a cute hallway display.

Everyone is curious about what is going to be under their Christmas tree so we found this tree craft and wrote what we are hoping for!

I can't believe it's only 4 more days until break! Where is this year going????

Have a great night!
-Sister 3-

Monday, December 2, 2013

Monday Madness

How many of you are crazy like we are and did some Black Friday shopping!?! There's just no way I was about to pass up the deals. I didn't go out Thanksgiving night or even wake up freakishly early but I did make it to the stores and snag ALL the things I set out for (and a FEW others!). These my my best deals…

Do you see a theme? I must be in the nesting phase! I also got some maternity clothes 50% from Gap. I'm pretty proud of my purchases. :) What was your best Black Friday buy?

I'm also into Cyber Monday, who doesn't LOVE shopping in their pjs and slippers? The sad part is I only bought two Christmas presents out of all these purchases! I guess I'll be venturing out to stores to finish the rest.

Speaking of Cyber Monday (and Tuesday) we're hosting a TpT sale! Check out our store for 20% off today and tomorrow. Don't forget to use the code "cyber" for 8% more ;)


Today I was supposed to be back at school with my kiddies but instead I was at CITW training. Who schedules a workshop the day after Thanksgiving break!?! Don't blame me… it's a three day workshop our principal sent 7 of us too. Because I have "baby brain" (did anyone else suffer from this???) I TOTALLY forgot about this training until yesterday afternoon, thankfully one of my fabulous co-workers texted me! So I was in a sub plan pinch. THANK GOODNESS for our emergency sub packs. I texted the sisters and had them throw one on my desk this morning! What a life saver.

***These are all on sale***

My kids were occupied and I was happy that I didn't have to spend an hour or two writing plans and sneaking into school early this morning to get everything organized. (Everyone knows this sister isn't a morning person!). Successful day with a sub and I learned a lot at my training. Who knew advance organizers, cues, questions, and nonlinguistic representations would be so interesting!? I'm exciting to revamp some of my lessons to include these essential learning tools! 


This week the sisters and I are also "hosting" conferences. Two LONG days and nights but it's always fun to talk to parents and share the wonderful (and sometimes not so wonderful) things their kids are doing. I have a lot of catching up to do tomorrow… my hall bulletin board needs to get updated and I have to decorate for the holidays. I want the room looking good for all the parents!

We'll check in later this week and share the cutesy Christmas things we're up too! Catch y'all later.
-Sister 3-

Monday, November 25, 2013

Animal Print, Landfills, and Turkeys

It's me, Sister 3 again… are you getting sick of me yet!?! I sure hope not!

Well GOOD NEWS… the most adorable nursery bedding came today! It was like Christmas morning when I saw all the boxes on my porch. I tore into them only to fall more in love with the precious patterns. Somebody, I won't name any names… daddy-to-be … thinks I'm nuts. But I don't care.

Now that I have it, it's time to pick out a paint color. I can't wait until our little room looks just like this! 


The science teacher and I run our Green Team at school. Our club has 32 members… sadly we had to limit it this year because last year we had 70+ and it was just to chaotic. We didn't have the adult help so we decided to cap it at 30. How did we get 32 you ask? I couldn't say no to those 2 little faces who handed me their registration! I'm a sucker. But the 40 in my mailbox…  I said no without hesitation!

Today we took a field trip to the Waste Management Landfill that's about 20 minutes from our school. Before we got there I was praying it didn't smell… and luckily… it didn't! We got an awesome bus tour. The kids were so into it- answering questions, asking questions, and wanting more when she said it was over. Who would have guessed the landfill would be so exciting?!? Next year, we're thinking the recycling plant! 


The sisters and I have been anxiously waiting for Thanksgiving break. To pass the time we've been working from our Gobble, Gobble unit! One more day, we can do it! 

-Sister 3-

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Ohh Baby, Baby, Baby Ohh

The past week I have been consumed with baby. I went to my "you're half way there" ultrasound last Thursday. We had a full house with daddy, grandma, and grandpa! I am overwhelmed with the amount of love this baby has and he/she isn't even here yet! I well up every time I think about it… darn hormones! Anyways we got to see our little baby. Baby was excited to see us too… look baby is waving!!!

Ugh, it just melts my heart!

We finally settled on some bedding! I was glued to the internet trying to find something that would work for a boy or a girl. Boyyy (or girl!) it was a hard task! Everything seems to be either boyish or girly… where is the neutral???? Finally, I found something that I am just absolutely in LOVE with. I can't wait for it to arrive, 6 more days… but who's counting?!?

I also discovered that I am eligible for these parking spots…

I felt bad doing it but after circling the lot 3 times and finding no open spots I decided, what the heck? I'm expecting! So I went for it. And it was totally worth it. Ahh the perks ;)

Now on the the stuff you came for… Seeing as how this is a teacher blog and all! 

This week we are knee deep in measurement. We started with inches. We've done some fun activities from Amy Lemon's unit! LOVE HER. We've measured our bodies with measuring tapes, we've done a measurement I Spy, and we've also practiced measuring in our math workbook. We' have a few more tricks up our sleeves for later this week! Our classes are totally digging measurement. 

We are also finishing up our continents and oceans unit. We have our location quiz tomorrow. I always get so nervous for them before a quiz or test! I just worry if I've given them everything they need and they are prepared enough to be successful. After the test I always yell at myself for being such a worry wart! Check out some of our fun activities from our Mapping Skills and Continents/Oceans unit! 

Alright everyone, this momma needs to catch The Voice! I'll check in soon.
- Sister 3 -

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Five for Friday

Time management has never been one of my strengths… like last week I started this post after school on Friday and of course got side tracked. This weekend I've spent a lot of time researching the safest baby car seats and looking for bedding to decorate the cutest nursery. ALL super important but my school work has taken a back seat. I'm not complaining at all! But I knew I had to get back to this post.


Here's a peak at some of the things we've been up to the last two weeks!

Thankfully Halloween is behind us. But it preparation for our festivities we all made a candy bag. (Like they needed anymore sugar!) We used foam sticks, stickers, and markers to decorate our bags. They turned out so cute!

Unfortunately, after Halloween comes "falling back."  I am having the hardest time getting use to such early darkness. Ugh, I'm ready for bed at 6 every night! Or maybe it's the pregnancy??? Who knows! 

The day after Halloween is always so quiet... until we asked them each to bring a peice of candy to school! What were we thinking???? Ohh that's right, we want to spark their interest with activities they are excited about! We did "The Day After Halloween" graph, which can be found in our Halloween unit. We sorted all the candy first. We talked about the different ways we could sort them. Then we talled each type of candy on our tally sheet and graphed them on the back page. It was a blast!

Career Day! Last Friday we celebrated the end of our communities study with community workers. Each student researched the career they would like to have when they grow up. We had quite a variety from McDonald worker (I do LOVE their french fries!!) to archeologist to teacher to chef. They have some wonderful aspirations!

We also practiced using a thesaurus this past week. The kids could spend hours looking up new words. One of our activities was to use the thesaurus to find new and exciting words to replace dull words. Grab this activity now… Wow Words Freebie!

Our RtI program is finally underway. We do Monday through Thursday, 20 minutes per day. This year we decided to focus on informational reading. Between the three of us, Sister 2's WONDERFUL student teacher, and our three parapros we have pretty small groups! Each week we print off an A-Z pocketbook for each student. We spend the whole week working with that one book. The kids are intrigued and learning to love informational text. WIN WIN. 

Have a great upcoming week everyone!!!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Pre-Halloween Fun!

Halloween is in in full swing around here! Our classrooms are looking spooky and the kids are acting even stranger. Please don't tell us it's just our kids that have Halloween Fever!?!

This morning one of my little cuties brought me this adorable bracelet! Can you believe his mom made it?!?

Today the Candy Corn Bandit paid us a visit. Gotta love Babbling Abby! The Candy Corn Bandit took our treat but left us with some clues. After he made us trek around the whole school we ended up back in our classroom where the treat was waiting for us. This lesson on making preditions is absolutely adorable! You have to check it out.

Today we also had our annual pumpkin fun! Sister 2 and I had a full house of parent volunteers, poor Sister 1 didn't get any. She made it work tho! We weighed, measured, and counted our pumpkins. Then we carved them... this year they got pretty fancy! Grab our pumpkin fun worksheet here!

Now, this momma-to-be is ready for bed! Too bad it's only 3pm...

Have fun tomorrow at all your Halloween festivities!
-Sister 3-

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Five for Friday on Sunday

It's Friday again.... or Sunday?, when I'm actually able to finish this post! Better late than never!

#1. Halloween is seriously right around the corner!! I mean, really... where is this year going? It's def been a whirlwind, for me at least! Our Halloween projects and activities official started this week. Our classrooms are really starting to look "spook"tacular. 

We started our week with some scary stories. Each child picked to write a spooky story about either a witch, vampire, or Frankenstien. We had them work through the writing process and turn their stories into final copies. We used our writing toppers from our Halloween unit to jazz them up a bit! They turned out adorable super scary.

We also did some opinion writing this week with some inspiration from Amy Lemons' spiders. We are just amazed by her! We read a ton of informational spider books throughout the week. The students then had to use their new information to answer: Do you think spiders are creepy or cool? Some just couldn't decide because the creepy things about spiders makes them so cool! lol, second graders are so insightful sometimes. Check out some of our finished products...

#2. This past week we also started telling time. Our cuties got o'clock and thirty without a problem but were really struggling with the five minute intervals. Sister 2 whipped up this cute Halloween inspired I-Spy. Grab it from our TPT store here... free!

I also pulled out our brand new telling time floor mat for some additional practice. I had my students go out into our pod with a parent volunteer to practice telling time.

#3. This week we were also working on making visualizations. We have two poems that we just love for this strategy. One is about a pencil and the other is about an unusual pet. Grab them both here. Our students were so surprised to find out what the poems were actually about!

#4. My wonderful room mom knows just what this mom-to-be craves and popped by this week with my FAVORITES. Kind of random but my baby loves soup and McDonald's breakfast sandwiches.

#5. Remember how last week Big Boy swung by school with ice cream sundaes?? This week Olive Garden came to my classroom with salad, breadsticks, and pasta! They brought chef hats and name tags... the kids (and their very hungry teacher) were in heaven! MMM thank you Olive Garden!

Now I just need to get Sister 2 to give Chili's a call back! I'm hoping they want to bring their famous (and our favorite) chips and salsa!

The Lions are on so I'm off to relax before our weekly Soup and Sandwich Sunday dinner tradition!
-Sister 3- 

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Time to Catch Up

Where has the time gone?!? About a week and a half ago we said we had another major announcment... sorry to leave you hanging!

I'm having a baby!!! Lots of big news on my end this year.  My students are beyond excited! Every day I find sticky notes on my desk with potential baby names.

In the mist of wedding and baby planning I am managing to get some teaching in! hehe... Thanks to my two lovely sisters, of course.

We have our bat unit under way. We have to say we are very excited about this unit because it was our launch into TPT. It's our first Sister Secrets "baby" if you will! Check it out if you're interested in studying bats this year. Here's a writing craftivity from the unit.

We are also starting our Halloween inspired activities and lessons. Today our cuties began rough drafts of scary stories... look for pictures of the finished projects soon! We also have been enjoying Halloween Bump! in our Math Menu rotations. You can grab a year of bump here, for free!

This week we've been doing all sorts of visualizing. It's one of my favorite strategies! Yesterday, I read See the Ocean.. it's such a sweet story. I stopped about half way through and had the kiddies go back to their desk and draw what they saw when they heard the words on the page, in their Daily 5 Notebooks.  Then we did a gallery walk. Here are a few of their visualizations!

And finally the highlight of last week was a visit from Big Boy! Our students had written resturant letters a few weeks ago and Big Boy wrote back saying they wanted to bring an ice cream sundae treat to ALL of us! 90 ice cream sundaes!! Such sticky fun. :)

I'm off to meet a contractor... we're wanting to renovate the bathroom. Wish me luck!
-Sister 3-

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

It's Hump Day!

Today we started Math Menu! I know it's only been one day but I'm LOVING it. And more importantly... the kids LOVE it! Today we explained the structure and went over the expectations. We had our first successful day of rotations!

You can grab our free BUMP games from this post! To learn more about how we run Math Menu visit this past post!

Today we also practiced our sentence writing! First we read Dogs Don't Wear Sneakers. It's such a cute story. Around the room we placed animal cards.  We set the timer for 15 minutes and the students had to walk around the room (silently!). When they came to a card they had to stop and write a silly animal sentence. Once the timer went off everyone returned to their seat, reread their sentences, and picked their favorite. Their favorite was then turned into a "final copy." Since they got such a kick out of these sentences we decided to make them into a class book!

See you back here Friday for some Five for Friday! 

Monday, October 7, 2013

Is this real?!?

Now that I've had some time for it to sink in I wanted to share my engagement love story with you! My boyfriend fiancĂ© and I have know each other for 8 years but have been dating for the last 3. Last Wednesday, he told me we were going to go to a local park to meet his friend, who is an up and coming photographer build her portfolio and get our dog Jack's pictures taken. We looked adorable because he warned me that we might be in a few of the pictures. We were posing and next thing I knew he was down on one knee holding the most beautiful ring I had ever seen! I of course said, "Yes!"

I knew this moment was coming, we had been looking at rings since last MAY! But he really took me by surprise. I couldn't have asked for a more wonderful proposal and the best part is we have picture of the whole thing!

The day after I came to school excited to show off my bling and tell everyone about our wonderful engagement story! My work family was so excited. But the best reaction I got was from my 27 students. They had so many questions (some of my little cuties were a bit confused about what a proposal ment) starting with, "So what's your new last name?" "Did you get married last night?" "Can we be invited to the wedding?" Here's a little picture one of them drew for us...

It really is a dream come true to finally be engaged to my best friend and soul mate.  Days later I still find myself looking down at my ring in aww.

- Sister 3 -

Friday, October 4, 2013

Five for Friday!

Ohh how we've missed Five for Friday! It's so fun to recap our week and look back on all the excitement of second grade. So let's jump right in...

Johnny Appleseed Day! One of our favorite beginning of the year celebrations is Johnny Appleseed Day! We call it his "birthday party." We spend the week leading up to our Friday celebration learning about fall. (Even though it's been in the high 70s low 80s around here lately!... But we aren't complaining.)  On Johnny Appleseed Day we enlist the help of a few parent volunteers to run the centers. We had 4 centers this year and the best one by far was the apple pancake station! We also did an apple glyph, apple science with weighing and measuring, and apple math. All of these activities and more can be found in our Apples [A Thematic Unit] on TpT. Here's a copy of our apple pancake recipe...

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2! Today we went on our first field trip of the year to see Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2. We spent this week learning about weather... you know, trying to "connect" our learning. We also did a literature study of the book, which by the way the movie is NOTHING like.  We made a Weather Dictionary and by far one of the cutest activities we did was our precipitation umbrellas! You can find everything you need for the umbrellas in our Water Works unit.

Michigan Products Taste Test!  In social studies we've been focusing on communities: rural, suburban, and urban. Our communities unit is the biggest social studies unit of the year so we really get into it. You can find a ton of communities activities here.  Last week we talked about Michigan made products and you can't talk about Bettermade chips without eating a bag few.  We got 4 Michigan products and did a taste test.  Anything having to do with food and you've got the kids attention!

Here's an even and odd freebie!

We saved the BEST for last! Sister 3 got ENGAGED.

Check back next Friday for another BIG announcement!