Sunday, July 26, 2015

The Sunday Scoop {7.26.15}

I'm so glad to be back for Teaching Trio's link up for the The Sunday Scoop!  Be sure to hop over to their blog to check out everyone else linking up!

I am a week away from school starting back (WHERE did summer go???!!!???).  So all my have to do's are related to that.  Our district is giving us 3 work days, but has filled them up with meetings (insert sad trombone sound).  I vowed to stay out of my classroom and away from all things school related until last week.  I only have a few small room set up things left to do, so my goal after that is to lesson plan and make copies...and laminate!

Last year, I got SO super tired of kids having to drag their chairs over to my small group table, so I ordered 6 of these stools from IKEA.

Has anyone else tried these in your classroom?  I'm really hoping these hold up well.

Since this is my last week of summer vacation, I'm only planning on working on school work Monday and Tuesday.  After that we are headed off to Six Flags and spending time with family.  Do you have some end of the summer plans you are going to squeeze in?

Monday, July 20, 2015

The Last 5 Months....

So I disappeared...almost completely for the last 5 months and I'm back today to explain why!

Have you ever felt comfortable with your life?  Felt that you had gotten to a good place?  Had a pretty clear idea of what the immediate future held?

I felt that way too in February.  It was a lot like the picture above...miles of beautiful, straight roadway ahead.  Little did I know that my life would change dramatically at the end of that short little month.

One of my students started missing a lot (and I mean A LOT) of school days in a row.  A child who was always there, suddenly missed two weeks in a row.  I spent a good amount of time that last week in February trying to track her down.

Tuesday, March 3, I found out she had been removed from her home by Social Services.  The next day, the social worker showed up at the school to withdraw her and I volunteered to take her.  Thursday, another case worker came to my home, and Friday at 7 pm, Little Miss was dropped off at my house.

I went from being single with no children to sharing a tiny apartment with a 7 year old.  It was a big change.

Because I was her teacher and it was considered an emergency placement, I was able to get a provisional foster care license.  I FINALLY completed all the classes and paperwork just a few short weeks ago and am now fully licensed.

Little Miss is (thankfully) an absolute sweetheart and since I had been her teacher, we didn't have any drama related to her not knowing me.

We are living one day at a time...or court date to court date (which we have another one coming up the second week of August and if you are a praying person, we would covet your prayers).

So that, in a nutshell, is why I completely disappeared from Teachers Pay Teachers and blogging.  I needed some time this summer to really recharge after a challenging school year and becoming a parent! If you are on Instagram, I would love to connect with you there (@theprimarysource)!  It is the only social media platform that I haven't completely neglected!

I hope you and yours have been having a wonderful summer break...we sure have!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Worship Wednesday // 2-12-15

I'm so excited about Beth at Adventures of a Schoolmarm's new weekly linky: Worship Wednesday.

I tend to be an internal the extreme sometimes.  I always hope that never comes through to other people in my everyday life, but it can seriously keep me up at night if I allow it to do so.  Hillsong's Oceans has spoken directly to me ever since the first time I heard it.  Particularly these words:

Trust without borders.

"Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you.  Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life."
Psalm 143:8

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Five For Friday

I am linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for Five for Friday....yes, I realize that it is now Saturday.  I fell asleep before I could even think about finishing this post and hitting publish!

Be sure to check out her post for all the other people linking up!

I participated in an Instagram Freebie Loop on Sunday.   This is the freebie I shared.

It is a sample from my newest handwriting set, Winter Holidays Handwriting.  

I hope you will check out the Valentine sample (and the Winter Holidays set)!  Leave me some feedback and let me know what you think!

Monday, we had a great time celebrating Groundhog Day with the help of some fabulous freebies I found on Teachers Pay Teachers as well as one of my first products I ever created.

We started the day with a short video from Discovery Education about the history of Groundhog Day and then made our predictions.  When my little friends came back from Specials and PE, I had added the groundhog to the side of the graph with the correct prediction.  

Next, we used the Comprehension Mini-Read from Primary Punch's Free Groundhog Day No Prep Practice pack.  We have been working REALLY hard on finding text evidence to prove our answers.  I projected the story on the board and we worked together to find and underline evidence from the article to prove the answers they were writing to the questions.  This pack also has a great Tally and Graph activity that we used as well.

We also made the super cute hats included in First Grade Blue Skies Groundhog Day set.  No, second graders are not too old to enjoy silly hats!!

Finally, we used my own Groundhog Day 100's Chart Mystery Picture to practice plus/minus 10 mental math! 

I have a blog post that I am working on about a wonderful new resource from Melissa Dailey at Mrs. Dailey's Classroom.  One of the things I have loved most since starting this Teachers Pay Teachers/blogging adventure are the new people I have "met" (online).  Mrs. Dailey is one of those people.  I buy resources for my own classroom all the time, and I especially love when I can support people who I find to be truly wonderful, supportive, and kind!  She has a new product called Counting Coins and it is on sale right now for only $1.  These task cards include 2 sets so that you can differentiate in your classroom.  As I said, I will be telling you more later about how I have been using these, but seriously...check them out now!!

I have a new classroom timer that I have been using.  It is from and plays music!  Check out all the fun options (you can even upload your own)!

We love Mission Impossible and Star Wars.  They are perfect for timing all the different games we play during whole group time.

Last, but not least...we have been working this week on writing book reviews.  I created a template to help my students organize their thoughts.  Click the link below to grab a copy for your class!

Book Review Freebie!

Have a happy and relaxing weekend!!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Favorite Things: Make Ahead Meals

I'm so excited to linking up with The Teaching Trio girls for the Favorite Things Linky!  

This month, I am sharing a few of my favorite make ahead meals.  I have found that I do better eating at home and not grabbing take-out if I cook ahead on Sunday for the week.  This includes packing lunches and making dinners.  

Now, I must tell you...if you are looking for health, whole foods, etc., then move on sister (or brother)!  My favorites are not necessarily the healthiest, however, all good things in moderation, right?

1.  Chicken Noodle Casserole.  This is SO easy to make and reheats really well.  I have little stone crocks with lids that I portion it out in for easy reheating in the oven or microwave.  Here's what you need:

3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breast (depends on the size)
6 oz. egg noodles
1/4 - 1/2 cup each of diced carrots, onions, and celery (whatever you do, don't leave these veggies out!)
1 small can of your favorite cream of whatever (I like mushroom, but seriously, whatever floats your boat)
1 - 1 1/2 cups sour cream (I don't measure when I make this, but I'm pretty sure I go heavier on the sour cream)
1 sleeve Ritz crackers (or in my case, whatever brand Aldi's carries)
1/2 cup of melted butter

Cook the chicken...I think the original recipe said to poach it...WHATEVER!  I throw those babies in the crockpot on Sunday morning.  Shred or chop up the chicken and set aside.  Cook the egg noodles according to the directions on the package.  In a pan, sauté the diced veggies.  Season them very lightly as the canned soup has a lot of salt already.  Mix the veggies in with the chicken when cooked.  In a bowl, mix the soup and sour cream together.  Combine the chicken, veggies, noodles, and soup/sour cream mixture together and dump into a 2 quart baking dish (I like to spray mine with cooking spray).  Crush Ritz crackers and sprinkle over the top.  Drizzle butter over the crackers.  Bake at 350 for around 30 minutes.

2.  Crockpot Buffalo Chicken.  This recipe comes from the Frugal Girls and can be found HERE.  I love this one.  I do shred mine up once it is done cooking.  One night I can have it on a bun, another night I may have it on a salad, sometimes for lunch in a, so, SO good!

3.  Cheeseburger Soup. I know the name sounds totally weird, but this soup is so good!!

1 pound ground beef or turkey
¾ cup chopped onion
¾ cup shredded carrots
¾ cup diced celery
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
4 tablespoons butter, divided
3 cups chicken broth
4 cups peeled and diced potatoes
¼ cup all purpose flour
2 cups of Velveeta processed cheese cubed (I used 16 ounces)
cups milk
¾ teaspoon salt
¼ to ½ teaspoon pepper
¼ cup sour cream

1.Brown the ground beef in 3 quart saucepan. Drain and set aside.

2.In the same saucepan add 1 T butter and add onion, shredded carrots, parsley flakes, basil and celery. Saute until tender.

3.Add the broth, potatoes and beef and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 10-12 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

4.In small skillet melt remaining butter (3 T) and add the flour. Cook and stir for 3-5 minutes or until bubbly. Add to the soup and bring to a boil. Cook and stir for 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low.

5.Stir in the cheese, milk, salt and pepper. Cook and stir until cheese melts. Remove from heat and blend in sour cream.

Do you have any favorite make ahead meals that reheat well??  If so, please share in the comments!  I am always looking for something new.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

February Currently

I'm linking up with Farley for February's Currently.

I am home visiting my family this weekend, and I am so glad I came.  It was a ROUGH week.  When I arrived at Mom and Dad's on Friday, there were 8 puppies that completely restored my good mood!

I have been at my new school for 6 months now and I am getting to know the teachers I work with.  I have found a sweet new friend that has started planning together with me (boy, doesn't that lighten the load!).  We've been meeting together on Thursdays and Fridays to plan and run our copies together.  So, for the past several weekends, I haven't had to work on ANY school work over the weekend!!!  WOO-HOO!!!!

I noticed my old-faithful brown boots that I've loved wearing for the past 4 years, finally have worn out....SADNESS!  I really want them to last through the rest of this winter, but I don't think they will make it.

We are a week away from starting Unit 4 of Wonders which means I need to get a move on to finish Unit 4 Morning Work and homework!!!

This leads me to my pageant title:  Procrastination Queen Supreme...I am the queen of waiting until the last minute on most things!!

Thursday, January 1, 2015

December SLANTbox

So December was my first time to sign up with Jameson over at Lessons with Coffee for SLANTbox!  I have stalked other people who participate for a long time, and I am so glad I signed up!  You are matched with two other teachers after signing teacher to send fun prizes to and one teacher who will send fun prizes to you!  Lauren Craton from Sparkling in Seventh sent me a super fun SLANTbox this month (Thanks Lauren!!!!!!).

The theme was "The 12 Days of Teaching".  Here are all the goodies I received:

12 Mr. Sketch Markers
11 erasers
10 dollars to the Amazon Kindle store
9 Reese cups
8 of "seriously the BEST colored pens ever!" - I can't wait to try these out!!
7 packs of stickers
6 tropical things - since she couldn't afford to send me on a tropical vacation.
5 golden things - yellow is my favorite color!!
4 homemade Christmas cards from her students
3 packs of Reese's Pieces
2 beauty products - my favorite mascara and tinted Burt's Bees balm
1 Grinch mug

LOVED. IT. ALL!!!  Thank you again Lauren and thank you to Jameson for putting this together each month!

If you are interested in SLANTbox, the signups for January should go live any day now.

Happy New Year friends!