Wrapping Up the End of the Year!

Well! It has been a whirlwind of wrapping up, packing up and finishing up around here! We are finally out for the summer, and while I will miss my kiddos, I am very glad for the time off! We had our last day on Thursday, and I had to have my whole classroom packed up and cleaned so that our local YMCA could move in by 3pm Friday! Talk about stressful! Everything had to come off the walls, furniture had to be emptied, cleaned and pushed against one wall, and cupboards had to be emptied unless I wanted things to walk off. I tell you, by 2pm on Friday afternoon, with only an hour to go, I was saying to heck with some of the stuff - if it walks off this summer or gets broken, I guess I'll just have to replace it!

I have to share some images from our final week. We had our BragTag ceremony where the students got to add beads to their necklaces and string the tags they'd earned:

Passing out the tags, picking out beads and trying to string them so they faced the same direction took quite a bit of concentration! We all gathered around the carpet for a good 30 minutes, reminiscing about what each tag represented.
For those of you new to BragTags, they are from www.imagestuff.com. You can custom order them and they are about 36 cents a piece. The company is fabulous to work with - you choose colors, design, shape etc and they make free proofs for you to view with no obligation to buy! They also have teacher packs that have all sorts of tags for attendance, homework, citizenship etc. The tags are plastic coated so they are very durable - I have students from last year who still have their necklaces! Here are some finished necklaces:

We got tags for being good spellers, for going on a field trip, for finishing our Chicken Life Cycle unit, for doing different Homework projects etc.

We used Marsha of A Differentiated Kindergarten's Ball Words Series to help learn our sight words this year, so this tag was for learning all 220 Dolch sight words!
I'm happy to say that 21 of 26 kiddos earned this one!

We had a Math Club that students could earn entry to - it was for any grade level, and they got a t-shirt and their name on a bulletin board. For 1st grade the standard was 100 addition problems with sums to 20 in 5 minutes. For kindergarten it was writing numbers from 1-100 and completing 10 addition problems with sums to 5 in 5 minutes. Once they earned their entry to the Math Club they got this tag:
I had to get them a special tag for it, because the shirt looked like this:

Did you notice anything about the t-shirt? Apparently the printer didn't either, which is why we got the shirts for free. I still think we should have trashed them and paid for properly printed shirts, but $ won out over common sense unfortunately, so I hoped that the BragTag would help make up for it. Surprisingly, we got not a single parental complaint about the shirts....

I have a few more end of year photos and stories to share, but I'll save them for another post. Now that I'm out of school I think I'll have more energy to blog :) so hopefully I'll be able to post several times a week over the summer. I have so much to share!

Oh, and thanks for all the sweet comments about our ultrasound appointment! We did indeed find out the gender - it was kind of hard to miss in fact, it was pretty much the only body part that baby decided to show off - for everything else he made sure to turn away from the camera! Yep, it is another boy - I'd show you the pic, but its rather pornographic since he truly was flaunting! Instead I'll show you the one semi-decent look we got at his chubby little face:

Now we just have to work on a name. I have one I've been using for him, but no one else in the family likes it. Of course since no one else can come up with anything better, I might be able to have my way with this. Seems we used up all the "good" names with our first 3 boys - Robert Andrew Frederick (he got the grandfathers' names), Thomas Patrick Ryan, and Joshua James Kees. Since we call them Robbie, Tommy and Joshie we wanted another name that could be shortened with a long e sound like that. My children are also insisting it has an O in it since they have a "secret" club called "MoRoToJo" (daughter's name is Moira) and if baby wants in apparently he will have to have a name that fits the consonant-O pattern lol.

So obviously, finding a name is going to be a tall order - almost as hard as keeping him in till his August 16th due date! I'm already having contractions - you know those "practice" contractions that I assure you I do not need after birthing 4 children! My body has had enough practice thank you very much! Not to mention the joys of gestational diabetes - one minute my blood sugar is too high and my vision is blurry and I'm soo sleepy, the next minute it nose dives and I get all sweaty and shaky. Again, very thankful school is over so I can deal with all of this without dealing with 26 kiddos at the same time!

Life Cycles and a Sale!

Hi friends! Woo this pregnancy at nearly 40, plus all the end of school activities, plus all the extra curricular activities of my other kiddos, is really wearing on me these days! I'm hoping to be blogging on a regular schedule once everything settles down - which is is only 13 school days from now!

Source: google.com via Erin on Pinterest

We get May 17th off since we didn't use our inclement weather days - which I was bummed out about in February but I am thankful for now! Plus I am taking May 9th off to go see the perinatologist and get my ultrasound! We are still debating whether or not we will find out the sex - we did with the other 4, but honestly I already had "mother's intuition" about them (I was right each time!) but with this baby its hard to tell. Don't take this the wrong way, because I love my boys with all my heart and I'd be overjoyed with another one, but since this is ABSOLUTELY  the last one, I am really hoping for a girl. My boys are hoping for a girl as well - partly because they don't want to have to share their room and toys with yet another brother, but also because they are eager to have a little sister :)

Oh, and by debating, I mean that I am waffling, and my husband is emphatically saying that he's finding out whether I do or not. Apparently he's decided not to leave the dr's office unless they tell him. I have no clue why he's so gung-ho about it, but he's taking the day off work to go with me, so I guess he means it! Of course, if he finds out, I'll have to find out since I can't stand him knowing something I don't! I'm actually thinking we may have a little gender-reveal party with the kiddos since I don't think we can stuff all 4 of them into the exam room with us. I'm just hoping there are no tears if its a boy lol (from me or the kids!)

Alright, enough of the personal stuff, let's talk school. We had a fabulous Spring program the other night - it was called "The Naughty Bunny" and the three class were divided into birds, bunnies or fish. My class were birds, and just for fun the music teacher made them all Angry Bird masks. At the evening performance I had 20 out of 26 kiddos show up which was outstanding for our school. As they put on their shirts and masks, we had some time to kill and one of my little birds piped up and said "Can we read?" which just melted my teacher's heart of course. Soon I had piled of little birds around the room, enjoying Mo Willem's Elephant & Piggie books which are their absolute, hands down favorites and oh my! if you don't have any for your class yet you need to get them!

In other news, our chicken eggs have not hatched - I suspect a problem with the rooster as very few seemed to have been fertilized :(  This is the first year I have had this problem - but luckily, we have a feed store in town that sells baby chicks so some of the eggs will miraculously hatch Monday night and on Tuesday morning we will find adorable baby chicks when we enter the classroom! I know, I know, deceitful of me, but its in a good cause :)

In other life cycle news, my pregnant butt nearly fell into the creek trying to catch these critters:

Of course, I had taken my 4 children to the creek with me, with the intention of having them do the wading and catching, but apparently my children are too squeamish to put their feet in creek water. Only 1 our of the 4 was brave enough, and only after he saw very pregnant mama doing it (and slipping on algae covered rocks! My equilibrium is not what it was!). I think he was partially motivated out of fear that I would do myself an injury, but whatever, the reason it worked! We went home with 3 tadpoles, after releasing the snails and crawfish we caught. I feel better about having caught the tadpoles ourselves - not only was it a fun experience,  now I know exactly where to release them once they are frogs, and I know they are indigenous to our area!

Alright, I am going to work on lesson plans now - and order my end of year BragTags before I forget again! I'll leave you with this little tidbit - in honor of Teacher Appreciation Week there's a big sale going on at Teachers Pay Teachers! My store will be on sale, plus there's a code you can use the get an extra 10% off everything! Check it out May 7th & 8th!

Here are some fabulous Kinder and 1st grade stores that are also joining the sale:

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