Freebie and Sale!

Wow! TPT has reached 3 MILLION teachers! What a great time to have a sale, right?! My entire store will be 20% off on Feb 27th & 28th! Plus use the code TPT3 and get an additional 10% off!
Plus you can still entire my giveaway for a chance to win "The Naughty Leprechaun Story", my St. Patrick's Day Lucky Leprechaun Math Unit and Kroger's Kindergarten's Somewhere Over the Rainbow craftivity! Just CLICK HERE to go enter!

And, just because I wanted to share some St. Patrick's Day fun, here's a freebie for you! Click the picture to go download it!

St. Patrick's Day Review and Giveaway (FREEBIE!)

If you've been following my blog for a while, you will know that St. Patrick's Day is a BIG DEAL in my classroom! Seriously, it's probably my favorite week of the year!
We create Leprechaun Traps and earn this lovely BragTag:
We read every Leprechaun book known to man, then write our own class books. Every day for a week, a leprechaun causes some kind of mischief in our room, and even though we try our darndest to catch him, we have yet to manage such a feat. Luckily the sly little fellow still leaves us a treat:
This year I was so excited to be given the opportunity to review The Naughty Leprechaun Story:
What a wonderful book! Although it deals more with starting the leprechaun tradition at home, it is easily adaptable to the classroom as well. My favorite part is the coin:

 This is a heavy weight coin, palm-sized that I'll feel comfortable passing around to my kiddos - no worries that it won't hold up or will somehow get broken.

The book has rhyming text, cute illustrations (love the shamrocks on each page!) and a sweet story - it teaches that luck is a consequence of hard work and not just random chance. It features twin leprechauns, Liam and Leyland.

Each day, if the children have behaved, we'll get to choose whether we want treasure (Liam's side of the coin) or ticks and treats (Leyland's side of the coin). If the children misbehave then they don't get to choose which leprechaun comes to visit that night. I love the idea of this because even if we have a bad day, we can start over the next day with a visit from a leprechaun anyways - just not one the kiddos would have wanted lol!

I plan to have Leyland pull a whole bunch of pranks (toilet paper leading from the bathroom all the way to our classroom!) while leaving just a few small treats - maybe some Smarties or small chocolate coins. Liam on the other hand will leave "School treasure": new crayons, new books (my class LOVES FlyGuy and coincidentally Scholastic has a Flyguy book for just $1 this month! Talk about a great treasure - I can buy one for each of my kids and not have to resort to ramen this month!) and maybe some special stickers and craft items. I am so excited to get this started!

The author, Stephanie Hicks, has graciously agreed to allow me to giveaway one copy of her book! Plus my friend Danielle  of  Kroger's Kindergarten created this sweet little Somewhere Over the Rainbow craft/writing set and agreed to let me give one away!

I'm throwing in my St. Patrick's Day Lucky Leprechaun Math Unit too!

To win all 3 prizes - book, craftivity and my math unit - just enter via the rafflecopter below! If you'd like to purchase The Naughty Leprechaun Story there is free 2 day shipping PLUS a guaranteed delivery date of March 15th if you order by March 8th! 
a Rafflecopter giveaway
If you'd like more info about setting up a leprechaun visit to your classroom, check out this "How to Plan a Leprechaun Visit" FREEBIE!

Seuss Fun! (FREEBIE)

I am so happy to be able to post this picture of Sullivan! We got into see the pediatric dermatologist finally and with new lotions, antihistamines and a regimen of wet wraps, he is looking sooo much better! He's laughing for the first time in weeks! We still have to see an immunologist to find out the underlying cause and come up with a permanent plan, but it is such a relief to have him comfortable again!
 (Don't judge me for the candy corn jammies - his ointments stain everything so we are trying to keep him in old outfits for now lol)

I'm gearing up for Read Across America week! I've signed my class up to have visitors come read to us - we're just a few blocks from the university campus, so we always have education students volunteer for this type of thing. I even have a BragTag that kids can earn by reading a Dr. Seuss book aloud to the class and completing a writing activity.

Unfortunately, Dr. Suess Enterprises has a very tight copyright on Dr. Seuss titles and images, so a lot of the games and activities I had made or found on TPT had to be removed. I have found some adorable clipart that works around this issue, by utilizing a Circus Cat! I know my students will love the colorful graphics! I revamped several of my forbidden Dr. Seuss products with this Circus Cat clipart, and put them back up on TPT:
~A fun card game with Fry Phrases for building reading fluency!~
~A word family matching game to help with rhyming and reading simple word families!~
~A Roll & Graph game that covers data analysis, comparing numbers and addition!~
~A Roll & Cover game set with number recognition, addition & subtraction boards!~

And here's a "What Makes Ten?" FREEBIE for you! Just click the picture to go download it now!

How to Quickly & Easily Save Youtube Videos, FREE!

Does your district restrict access to youtube or other video websites? Mine runs a filtering program that removes all the ads from the side and restricts access to certain videos. Unfortunately, even some perfectly appropriate videos fall victim to the filter! During testing in the spring, our access is often cut off for weeks at a time too. This is a big problem in my classroom as we really enjoy using youtube videos throughout our day!

We use YouTube videos for Brain Breaks:
This is our current favorite, so simple and yet the kids love how it speeds up each time!

We use them to reinforce certain skills:
I'm hoping to find a video that goes to 200, but so far no luck!

We use them to expand our knowledge:

The point I'm trying to make is, I NEED YouTube! So imagine how happy I was today to learn a simple, quick FREE way to download youtube videos to my computer so I can use them without internet access!I thought I would share this, via a quick tutorial, because I know other teachers must be looking for this too :)

The site I used was Once you get to the site, here are the steps:

 Step 1: Paste in the url of the video you want to save (just find it on youtube first, copy the address and then go back to

Step 2: Press "Download"

Step 3: Select your format. An MP4 will play in Windows Media Player while you can drop an FLV into a Smartboard file.

Step 5: Either save to your computer or open in Windows Media Player. 
 This is how it looks in a Mozilla Firefox browser.

This is how it looks in Internet Explorer.

Step 6: You can add it to a playlist in Windows Media Player (maybe a Brain Break playlist? A Calendar playlist?) or just save it to your videos file or to your desktop!
I am going to be downloading videos all weekend and putting them into powerpoint presentations for each part of my day! Now I don't have to worry about whether the internet will be up, whether we will have YouTube access or whether videos will suddenly be yanked off the site!

100th Day Projects

We had our 100th Day on Monday, a bit late because of 2 snow days last week. Since it was so close to Valentine's Day I decided not to do any type of party or have any food. It seems like when we try to do something like 100th Day Trail Mix or necklaces with 100 Froot Loops etc it becomes more about the food than the actual day. This year the only thing we did was create our 100th Day projects. Since I have so many kiddos this year, we had to make 7! Here's what we did:

In advance, I traced all 7 pictures (Dalmatian, gumball machine, sunflower, cherry tree, pizza, fishbowl and fish) onto colored butcher paper by projecting the images on my Smartboard. This took about an hour. The next day I spent another hour after school outlining all the pictures with a Sharpie marker. The 3rd day I cut out all the pictures - note for next year, that sunflower took FOREVER to cut out!
On the 100th Day I let each student choose which project they wanted to work on. Since I had 28 kiddos that day it worked out perfectly with 4 kids per project. Once they were in their groups they had to choose a team leader who would be the person in charge of assigning tasks and securing supplies. Then they wrote up a list of what they needed - scissors, glue the different colors of construction paper they wanted, and items to trace to make their pieces.
Once they had their supplies they got to work tracing, cutting and counting, and then traced, cut and counted some more! They were very surprised by how long it took them to get to 100! We had read Counting Coconuts by Wendy Silvano last week. It is a great book for skip counting, and by referring back to it, each group came to the conclusion that it would be easiest to make 10 piles of 10.
Once each group had their 100 pieces cut out, I gave them their butcher paper picture. This is where I'll give further guidance next year because very few of my groups made a plan before slapping the glue on. They soon realized that though 100 seems like a lot, they didn't have enough to cover the whole picture. Some of them wanted to cut out more pieces to fill in the gaps!

Our projects took about 3 hours, broken up by lunch, recess and bathroom breaks. It was completely cost-free for me (I have a TON of construction paper!) and only took 3 hours to prep. My students didn't miss the crowns and snacks at all and the team work, planning, skip counting and number sense practice they got was priceless! Here are our finished projects:

This group traced quarters for their gumballs. They were disappointed that even though they had 100 it didn't fill their machine. They looked at the fishbowl that could barely hold 100 fish and quickly realized it was the size that mattered! Then they started scouring the room for other circular things - discussing which would be too big to fit 100 (paint bottle) and which too small (water bottle cap).  What a great reinforcement of number sense and preview of volume!

Snow Days & a Flash Freebie

This week we only had school on Tuesday, for 1/2 day Wednesday and today. Talk about a wacky schedule! My kiddos have cabin fever too, which makes for a noisy classroom! We just are not used to the cold and snow here in Oklahoma.

After my conference on Monday I hit up the Kohls store across from the hotel since we don't have a Kohls in my town. I picked up the Kohls Cares books and plush animals for "Go Dog, Go", "Put Me In The Zoo" and "Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb". My kiddos were so excited to see new friends to read with! I introduced the books by reading them aloud this week and set them out as a special treat for my kiddos who finish their work quickly. I tell you, they are tripping over themselves trying to finish up so they get a chance to read one of these books:

 Here are two friends reading "Go Dog, Go!"
And two more reading "Put Me In The Zoo!"

In a few weeks they'll head back to our reading center, but for now they have pride of place at carpet :) It always thrills me to see how excited my kiddos get over newq books!

Speaking of new books, our school is having a Scholastic book fair next week and tonight was the "sneak preview" for teachers. Our librarians did it up right with a fiesta theme - faux margaritas, salsa and chips and a spicy corn dip. Nothing like shopping for new books while munching yummy goodies!

My kiddos are still on a "What does the Fox say? kick. It's our extra special good behavior dance lol. I created a "The Fox Says CVC Words" Write the Room activity and I'm offering it as a Flash Freebie for the next 10 minutes. Just click on the picture to go check it out!


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