Sunday, December 7, 2014

Win gift cards & prizes at the Favorite Things Blog Hop 2014


These are a few of my favorite things!

I'm so excited to be a part of this fun blog hop. Thank you, Laura from Where the Magic Happens, for organizing this treat for our blogs! As you hop from blog to blog you can read about each blogger's favorite things and enter to win a prize package! There are a total of 7 big prize packs and they each are full of wonderful gift cards and products. Also, many of the bloggers have put some products on sale at TPT. You can search for "myfavoritethings2014".


I will attempt to go through my favorite things without breaking into song ala Sound of Music or adding any references to whiskers on kittens!


Favorite Beauty Product - ESSIE polish
I would say my favorite product is Essie nail polish. I have tried various polishes over the year and I was ready to give up on ever polishing my nails. If I go to the salon a manicure would usually only last a week and I definitely don't want to pay to have them done every week! I tried the nail wraps and sort of liked them, but they took a long time for me to apply (that was probably just me needing to get used to them) and I found the good ones too expensive for my budget. So, I was thrilled when I tried Essie polish and found that it was thick enough to apply easily and lasted for a while. I tried a few other popular brands in that price range and it just wasn't the same. For me, the Essie polish is just the right consistency. I also love the colors that are available! I started buying this polish in the summer and have a nice little collection. I'm looking forward to adding more colors. Plus, it's fun to see the collection of colorful bottles!

Favorite Restaurant - Olive Garden
My favorites are Italian & Greek. My all-time favorite is Olive Garden. Our area is small so some of my favorite restaurants are not in the area so I only get a chance to visit them when travelling - Cracker Barrel, Chick-fil-A (coming to WA soon! still will be a drive for me, but much better!), Zoopa - so wish this was closer and they should totally have more locations! I would be remiss if I left out Taco Bell. My mom says that is a phrase I learned right after my first few words! I do tend to make way too many stops there after late nights at school. :)
My area doesn't have a wide range of restaurant cuisines. When we are travelling we try to seek out those little individual places with authentic recipes. While visiting Seattle, we tried out a little Ethiopian place at the Pike Place Market and loved the injera (bread) plate.

                                                                   
Favorite teaching supply - Frixion markers
I won a set of Pilot Frixion markers and I have fallen in love with them! They are the only marker (or even pen) that I've used that really erases. The kids love them also! I've recently used them to have us underline parts of a story (jobs that the mom did and those that the daughter completed). The only problem - the kids were purposely making lines longer so they could erase! I let them do it one time each and then we had to get back to work! The video cuts off just as the little girl is saying awesome, but I think you can tell they like them. :)
I love them for grading, because if I make a mistake I can easily erase it. There have been times when I graded a test and gave 100% and then noticed a mistake. I used to cover it with a sticker and re-grade. Now, I can just erase!

Favorite Tradition - Ornaments
When I was growing up, my grandma sent us ornaments. I don't remember if it was every year, but she sent each of us several ornaments. I only have a couple that survived the years! I have the one pictured above which was from 1984 and a Garfield one. 

My 2 boys each have several ornaments of their own on our tree. Some of these are shown in these pictures. They have a few that were give to them when they were younger. Of course, there are also ones that they made for the tree like the clay stocking in the top picture. As they grew older, I've let them choose an ornament for the tree almost every year. I write their name and the date on each one. It's fun to see the things they choose each year. It shows their personality and what their interests were during that time. This year, my oldest chose the burger and fries. We tease him about wanting to eat all the time! Welcome to the teen years! My youngest chose the red cardinal. He loves animals. Last year, he chose the Arctic Fox that looks like a little stuffed animal. We don't have a designer tree that could be featured in magazines, but it's a tree full of memories! That is precious to me!



Favorite Store - Amazon
I love Amazon prime! My prime membership expired and I tried going without it for a few months. Then I needed a baby shower gift. I could not get it to ship w/ free shipping and kept adding items to my cart to get it to work. I was also nervous that it wouldn't make it in time. I finally gave in and renewed prime. Presto! Delivered super fast and no shipping charges.
You can win a $20 gift card to Amazon along with the other fabulous prizes! This gift card is part of prize pack #7. It will be emailed to the winner. It is in US funds and can only be used at amazon.com.
My 4 featured items are 1/2 off during this blog hop! These are bundles that are already discounted, so to get them an extra 50% off is a big treat!

The Animal Research Papers Bundle includes pages for kids to research 99 different animal. It even includes my best-selling Arctic Animal Research Paper pack. They are written for early readers and feature photos rather than clip art. They have been used successfully with kindergarten - 5th grade. I'm a 1st grade teacher and use them in my class every year! The kids love writing their own report and becoming an "expert" on an animal.

I also have my Healthy Habits Mega Bundle on sale which features several food group activities and other activity to promote a healthy lifestyle. The healthy habits posters in this bundle have been used by many teachers and have been used for cafeteria bulletin boards.

The QR Code Story Collection is a recent addition and has become very popular. Teachers love to use these for centers. There are many similar items in the TPT store. I think this one is unique because:
*each collection features a theme - this makes it easy for you to rotate the books to match your curriculum or the season
*unique picture on each card - I've seen many sets that have no pictures or the same picture on everything. I try to put a picture on each card that goes with the story and is unique from the others. This makes it easy for pre-readers to find the right story. It also makes the card visually appealing.
*Playing time is listed - This is important in my classroom. I give my students a set amount of time. This helps them to choose a story that is not too long.
*SafeShare - The QR codes link to the video through safeshare. This means that the students do not see comments or ads that show up on YouTube. Most of the other TPT sets also do this, but please make sure before you buy a set.

The Literacy Poster collection includes poems that can be posted on the wall and a matching student version for a poety notebook. The poems used are traditional poems for the season in a range of levels for kindergarten - 2nd grade. They are great for building fluency. Color and black/white versions are included for the student notebooks.

Here is the info. about the giveaway. There are a lot of stores and mine is near the bottom so make sure you keep going to get your points for following the Teacher Treasure Hunter store at TPT. To go to the next blog in this hop, you can scroll down the blog buttons at the bottom of this post. Find the Teacher Treasure Hunter logo near the bottom and click on the next logo. You can do this at each blog so you keep "hopping" and don't miss anything. :) Also, it would be wonderful if you could leave comments on a few blogs - we love to hear from you!!

Because we value our followers and wanted to treat you to our favorite things Oprah style, we have put together the best giveaway of the season! My bloggy friends and I welcome you to the best, biggest, most cheerful event of the season:






7 winners for 7 prize packs!















Come and enter the giveaway and check out my bloggy friends' favorite things:



a Rafflecopter giveaway


Thursday, December 4, 2014

National Dice Day ~ December 4th

Today is National Dice Day! Dice are a part of many fun family games -- including Monopoly, Boggle & Yahtzee. They are also a fun part of many educational math games. 

Dice found at Cantonment Clinch (1823-1834) in Pensacola, Florida
Dice have been around for a very long time! In Iran, archaeologists discovered the oldest known dice. They are over 5,000 years old! I couldn't find a picture that I could post, but you can see a picture of the oldest dice here. The picture on the left shows dice that were likely used during the American Civil War. Historically, dice have been made from bone, wood, ivory & plastic. There are many more materials available today. A little trivia - --did you know that the dots on dice are called pips? This is also the word for the dots on dominoes. 

We have been taught that die is the singular form of dice. However, according to the Oxford dictionary, dice is now used for both singular and plural. I wish I would have know that at the beginning of my research for this post! While looking for graphics to use, I typed "dice" into the search field of a graphics site and when there weren't any results (should I say - "no dice" LOL!) I quickly typed in die. Then, I started laughing thinking about the absurdity of finding a graphic for die on this cute graphics site that caters to scrapbookers-- not to mention what will the site owner think when they look at the history of search terms. I'm pretty sure that I will be the only one who used that search term!

There are many great classroom resources that use dice. I've provided a little list here of some freebies. Read to the end of the post for a few ways to organize your dice collection!
CLASSROOM FREEBIES
1) Winter Dice Games by Teacher Treasure Hunter
2) Winter Color by Sum created by Teacher Tam
3) Polar Express Roll and Cover Games created by Mary Lirette
4) Roll a Snowman by the Tutu Teacher
5) Roll it! Make it! Expand it! worksheet by Rebecca Anderton - Teaching First
6) Roll a Tree a Christmas worksheet for adding 3 digits by Fun in First
7) Save the Snowman a winter game by Heather's Heart
8) Anna, Elsa & Sven dice game for number recognition by the Activity Mom

Here are some great ideas to keep your dice organized:
*Put dice in magnetic containers that are put on a hanging cookie sheet (cutesified!)
*Plastic craft boxes with multiple compartments
*Plastic bin storage made for organization nails and other hardware (repurposed!)

Keep the dice QUIET with these ideas:
*Dice in a water bottle
*Glue felt or foam to the bottom of a container

Happy dice day! Now, go "shake" things up in your math lesson today!


Monday, December 1, 2014

Calendar Time! December National Calendar Days

Happy December, friends! Here is a list of National Days in December - mostly the unusual ones! I didn't include ones that are on most calendars and/or ones that would be difficult for little ones to celebrate. 

It is so difficult for me to find blogging time! I'm trying!! I will try to do at least a few posts this month on some of these days. My goals for a Calendar Time post are:

1) educate you about the day and give you ideas of things you could tell your class about the day

2) share a list of resources that you can use in the classroom

3) sometimes provide links to freebies by me or other sellers

I'm currently working on a post for December 4th - National Dice Day! This will be a fun one!

DECEMBER






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