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Sunday, January 27, 2013

A New Love and an "Old" Valentine.... freebie

Let me introduce you to my new love! My new classroom pet, a dwarf hamster, named Hines. She is sooooooo soft and little and FAT!  She's like a little pompom or cotton ball.  I named her Hines after Hines Ward (A Pittsburgh Steeler that I just love) and Heinz ketchup. Yup, I said ketchup.  Ever since I was a little girl I would only eat Heinz ketchup.  Yes, there is a BIG difference between Heinz Ketchup and other catsup! Anywho, I thought that would be a cute name.  When I take Hines to class tomorrow I am sure my students will name it something else. 

If you haven't been to the website Very Jane you absolutely must!  It has daily deals and adorable goodies!  They have everything from children's headbands to bags to personalized notepads.  You just have to visit daily (or sign up for their emails) to see the daily deal.
Daily Boutique Deals
Last year time around this year, I blogged about a Math Valentine project I assign to my students and I included some Valentine cards you can print out and give to your students.  (That's where the "old" Valentine comes from in the title.)   Just click here {TOADally Awesome Valentines} to get the instructions for the Valentine Math Box along with the Valentines.
Before I go, I want to introduce you to my new friend and fellow teacher blogger, Amy.  She is new to blogging and doesn't have a lot of followers yet but does have a lot of fabulous information! Please stop by her blog and say Howdy! Become a follower and tell her Lorraine from Fabulous 4th Grade Froggies sent ya!  Click on the pic below to go see Amy's blog.

Have a great week my friends!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Going Back with Fabulous Recommendations!

I know some of you have already gone back to work after your Holiday break so you don't have any pity on us who are going back on Monday. However, l bet you got everything done you had planned and I didn't.  In fact, I didn't get anything done except a lot of napping, a lot of spending time with my hubby and kids, and a lot of eating.... And you know what? I'm O.K. with that.  The time spent with my family was priceless.

It looks like tonight I will be grading while I watch TV.  Luckily for me I got some super fabulous resources to use from some of my favorite TPT sellers (Teachers Pay Teachers).  So for tonight's blog post I thought I would share with you a few awesome resources I will be using when I return to school....

Oh, before I share the resources with you let me share with you another site where I am finding super clipart!  Click on the pic below and check out all the incredible art and even some crafts!
Mygrafico Digital Arts & Crafts

OK, now on to some recommendations...
 I own and highly recommend the following products from some Frogilicious educators!  Just click on the title or the small pic to see these resources and previews.

The first two products are from  the FA-BU Farley from Oh Boy 4th Grade!

One of my favorite authors is Patricia Polacco. I will be using her book and this packet on Monday.  Thunder Cake Book Study and Writing Activities.

For Math I am using Farley's Winter Math Pack for Older Kids...... The kids will love it!

This next AWESOME product is from the Superb Stephanie at Teaching in Room 6.  I plan to start this Paragraph of the Week ASAP!

and since we are currently on our fractions and decimal unit I am using Angela Watson's  (yeah that's right. THE Angela Watson from The Cornerstone for Teachers) 4th Grade Fraction and Decimal games for partners . I love when my students have fun while they are

Like I said, these are just a few awesome resources I am using ASAP.  I plan on "showcasing" more of the products I have and use.  In fact I just won an incredible resource from Tabitha at FlapJack Educational Resources that I will tell you all about after I try it with my class.

Have a HOPPY day!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Gratitude all year long!

This year my family started a couple of new holiday traditions.  My daughter is almost 18 (only 8 more days) and my son is 15.   This year they both have school trips that are quite costly but too good of an opportunity to not go.  My son, Jake, plays the bass in his H.S. Orchestra and they are going to New York City in April.... $1400.00...cha-ching! My daughter, Isabella, is in Varsity choir and they are going to Washington D.C. in March.......$1250.00.... again cha-ching!!!!  Thank goodness we are able to make monthly payments.

Back to our new traditions... Due the kids being older and all of our busy schedules we decided that every Christmas, starting this Christmas we will take a little trip.  This year due to the cost of their "field trips" we just did an overnight trip to our state capital, Austin, TX (we live in San Antonio).  We still do Christmas with my parents early on the 24th of December and then go all together to our annual Christmas Eve bash at my Aunt Rose's house. We wait for Santa to come on Christmas morning at our own house as we have done since the kids were born. {This year Santa brought them cash to spend on our trip---- How did Santa even know we were going on a trip?}  I won't bore you with details about our "Christmas trip" but we went to Austin on the 26th and had a BLAST!  It was so fun spending time with just us 4!  We went shopping (Outlet Malls, Ikea, and even good ol' Target), sightseeing, and ate like it was the last time we were ever going to eat.  We really appreciated spending time with each other and hopefully this will be a tradition we will keep especially as my daughter will be in college next year.

Our new tradition for New Years is being grateful! After having so much fun together on our Christmas trip and talking about how grateful we are to have each other my kids and I decided to make GRATITUDE JOURNALS.  I know gratitude journals and being grateful for things are not  new concepts but writing down what we are thankful for is new to us.  Yesterday, on New Years Day, we made our own gratitude journals and wrote down our first entry.  When I say we, I mean my kids and myself because my party pooper husband didn't want to make a journal.....whateva! He'll be jealous of them eventually! LOL!  We put all the stickers, scrapbook paper, magazines, etc we found in one of my craft boxes and plopped them on the table.  Everyone grabbed a composition notebook (I bought several during the summer when they were a quarter each) and went for it.  Above you can see the one I made and my first entry.

We will keep our journals in our own rooms and every single day, before we go to bed, we will write down one thing we are thankful for.  We talked about it being  anything.... I'm grateful for my family to I'm grateful for my erin condren planner to I'm grateful for the beautiful weather..... really anything you feel grateful for that particular day.  At the end of the year on New Year's Eve Day we will take the time to sit together and read aloud what we were all grateful for through the past year. On New Year's Day we will all (hopefully my party pooper husband included) make new gratitude journals and start again. How awesome is that?  I hope we really stick to it!  I think this is such a great idea!  For my first entry (pictured above) I used some stickers to represent what I felt because I had them but I'm not planning on necessarily putting a picture with every entry.  Some days my entries may be a paragraph describing a moment, some days I may just write a single word.   Today my son got his braces off so I am predicting he will be he will be writing he is grateful for an extra beautiful smile.... we shall see.  Here is a pic of all of our journals.  I love how they are all so individual (and I love that mine has glitter letters!!!!!!)

Have you ever kept a gratitude journal?  Do you have any New Year traditions?  I love to hear all about them.

HAPPY 2013!