Monday, July 30, 2012

Monday Made It!!!

Yeah! It's Monday!  Can't believe I'm happy about Monday but in blogland it's the greatest day! Why...Monday Made It!

Thanks again to Tara for this great linky! I've found so many wonderful projects and keep racking my brain to come up with something original to share but it's hard work with so much awesomeness out there. So here are my "made its" and they are my actual finished projects. I have lots of "almost made its" and hopefully they'll be finished this week. 

First up...

Open Number Line

I usually just quickly scribble open number lines on the white board when I need one. But I decided that having my very own classroom (for the first time in 9 years) I would create an open number line for everyday use.  It was quick and easy to create. 

I used a roll of fax paper (it was a glossy paper) and black electrical tape.  The tape was awesome on the glossy paper because it easily peeled off when I needed to move it - I wasn't perfectly straight on the first (second, third...) tries. 

 Once it's laminated I'll use dry erase markers to write on it.  Can't wait to see it hanging in my classroom! 


Count By Fives

I love these little counting by five posters.  A fellow teacher has a version using actual kid handprints in paint to create these darlings. But since I don't have any kids handy and I didn't think puppy would cooperate, I decided to use the cricut and create some hands. 

 The colours are hard to see in the pictures, but they are much more vibrant in person.  

On my agenda for this week...a floor version Hundred Chart.  I got the idea from Donna at Math Coach's Corner.  Check it out! I'll let you know how mine works out! Oh...and I'll probably try and make some of the rekenreks she shared as well! 

Now I'm off to play with the puppy...since she looks so bored and pathetic!

Happy Monday! Can't wait to see your Made Its! 


Sunday, July 29, 2012

Fabulous Finds


I'm a little late but still thought I would link up with Elizabeth at Fun in Room 4B for her Fabulous Find Friday. 
I was reading my newly arrived Guided Math book by Laney Sammons (which I waited 3 weeks for because it was on back order....but it's well worth the wait!!!) Anyway, I was thinking more and more about how to store my math stations this year.  I've tried bins and baskets and plastic shoe boxes but nothing seems right.  I don't like that most baskets and shoe boxes are not the right size for regular sheets of paper so that instructions and recording sheets get wrinkled.  And those that are big enough take up a lot of precious shelf space.  

So what is a girl to do???? Well, obviously, go shopping is the correct answer!!! So that's what I did. Off I went to Michaels with my 25% off entire purchase coupon and found this little darling...which was already 50% off.  And I LOVE it!!! Ten stations, neatly stored. 

Regular paper fits and so do my recycled mushroom containers that I use to store my manipulatives for stations in. (Love mushrooms...and the fact that they come in great little plastic containers is a plus!!! I use these containers for everything...but that's another post.) 

I was going to put my cart together at home but decided it would be much easier to take to school while still in the box.  I'm sure I'll post more pics once it's up and running in the classroom. I'll let you know how it works out!  And if you have any other great storage suggestions...let me know! 

Happy Sunday! 

What I love about blogland...

Ah....Sunday morning, cup of tea, sleepy puppy on the couch and blog time!!! I'm one happy teacher! Almost as happy as I am on Friday afternoons during the school year! 

So what do I really love about blogland...all the wonderful ideas, honest stories about what really happens in classrooms and freebies, deals and giveaways. As I was surfing through some blogs this morning I found Erin's adorable calendar set and she lured me into writing this the effort to finally win something! But truth be told, I'd probably just end up buying the set anyway because they are just so cute and would brighten up my boring calendar! Want to check it out...and maybe win a set for yourself? Head on over to her blog! Good Luck! 
Creating & Teaching
 I have a feeling I may be breaking the one post a day rule today because I have a found a few other things I want to share. But I must hurry now and hopes to be one of the first five! 

Happy Sunday! 


Yahoo! I won Erin's awesome Calendar set! Thank you Erin! It's awesome.  Now to get some more ink and get printing! 

Monday, July 23, 2012

Math game, freebie and a sweet treat recipe!

It's Monday and I'm linking up with Tara again! 

I'm loving Monday Made Its! Although it usually takes me until at least Friday to get through all the wonderful posts people have been sharing.  And my to do list grows longer each day. We may need a "Friday Finished It" linky party if I soon don't stop starting all these wonderful projects and then get sidetracked by a new one! 

This week I did accomplished a few things in between blog stalking and project starting.  The first is my new math game - Connect 10! 

I saw a game like this once at a "teacher" store and thought it was such an awesome idea. But, being cheap, I refused to pay $30 for it.  I thought it would be great to take an old Connect 4 game and turn it into Connect 10.  However,  it wasn't easy to find an old Connect 4 game.  I did find a version at a dollar store once but the little tokens had raised writing on them so it was impossible to write the numbers on them. 

So I was very excited last week when I found this version at the dollar store for $2.00.  I will admit that I opened the box in the store to make sure I could write on the tokens easily.   I can see this game being played many ways in the class.  I will start with connecting four tokens of your colour and adding to find the total.  Kids can then play a few rounds keeping a running total.   

In the above picture, I played so that you had to have 4 in a row and the sum be 10 (hence the Connect 10 title) but you could just connect any number of tokens and make 10. 

I only used the numbers 1-4 on my tokens for this game, but you could adapt it with higher numbers, or lower ones.  You're only limited by your imagination! 

Number Cards

As I was reading through my new curriculum for Grade 3 this year (I haven't taught Grade 3 math for a while and the curriculum has changed) I realized that I was going to need some new number cards for ordering, comparing, operations, just about everything!  In Grade 3 we focus on numbers up to 1000 and students must develop a very strong understanding of these numbers.  

So I went looking for some number cards that went to 1000 but couldn't find any that I liked. So I created my own in Word.  Now, these are not fancy! Just a font that came with Word but I love that I could customize a size that would work for most games and activities. This is what I came up with. 

I printed each group of 100 on a different colour of construction paper and laminated them.  Then, using my new handy, dandy paper cutter (see my last post - I'm still over the moon excited about it!)  I cut them out and hole punched them.  I plan on keeping them on rings but my rings are still at school.  I also plan on having a few students that "need to keep their hands moving" be in charge of keeping them in order on the rings each week. 

If you would like a copy (and I managed to figure out google docs correctly) you can click here.  If I didn't figure it out correctly and you would still like a copy please leave a comment with your email and I'll send you a copy. 

Sweet Treat

Finally, this week I made our favourite sweet treat!  It's a yummy, yummy summer (or anytime of the year) dessert that is is quite easy but tastes like you slaved all day! 

My apologies for the pictures, they didn't turn out very well! But the dessert did! They're called Drumstick Squares and taste like the yummy Drumstick ice cream treats from my childhood (or two weeks ago when I last had one!) 

Here's the recipe if you want to try them!  It will make a large 9x13 pan or two 8x8 pans. 

Drumstick Squares 

Crust and topping: 
*3 tbsp of melted peanut butter (I usually add a little extra) 
*1/4 cup of melted butter
*1/2 cup chopped peanuts 
* 1 box of oatmeal cookies crushed ( 250 g box - you can also use Nilla wafers or graham crackers if you like) 

Melt the butter and peanut butter together in the microwave. Add cookies and peanuts until coated.  Press 3/4 of the mixture into the bottom of your pan and save the reaming 1/4 for the topping. 

*1 pkg of cream cheese (softened) 
*1/2 cup of icing sugar
*3/4 cup of peanut butter
*2 tsp of vanilla
*3 eggs 
*1 large tub of Cool Whip 

Cream the cream cheese and sugar together. Add the peanut butter.  Add eggs one at a time and then vanilla.  Fold in the Cool Whip. Spread over the crust.  Drizzle with chocolate sauce and butterscotch sauce and sprinkle the topping on. Cover pans with foil and freeze over night! 

Wow! My longest post yet!  I can't stop thinking that I could have read at least 10 posts and added 3 things to my to do list in the amount of time it took me to write this! 

Happy Monday everyone! Hope you have a great week! 


Friday, July 20, 2012

Fabulous Finds!

Well this is a linky I love! But it could be very dangerous money wise!  I have 2 fabulous finds to share today.  The first is going to make my life so much easier!!!!!!!!! And my darling husband will be happy as well! 

Yes! My very own paper trimmer! Our school one is scary....squeaks and groans with each movement.  And of course, it's at school which isn't really handy for me!

Action shot! It's already been put to good use!

So for the next little while I am going to be only cutting things with straight lines! And my husband will be happy that he will not be recruited to do cutting for me any time soon! I may let him use the my paper trimmer in the future....but he'll have to prove that he's worthy! 

My other find is a storage one.  I found these awesome little containers at my local dollar store.  8 clear containers with lids for only $2.00.  Awesome price and I love that they are clear so the kiddies can see what is inside.  They are a great size as well (about 6 x 4 inches) and quite sturdy.  I'll definitely be picking up more for my math centers and just regular class storage. 

Happy Friday all! I'm off for a little weekend get away...and there will be a teacher's store and Costco involved! (Super excited because these shopping opportunities are rare...about a 3 hour I'm going to make the most of it!) 


Thursday, July 19, 2012

Thank you!

Happy Thursday everyone! If this wasn't summer I'd be saying "Only one more day until the weekend!" but since it's summer I guess that doesn't count.  Plus, there's much more to be excited about.  If you read yesterday's "One word Wednesday" you probably guessed that I'm "wowed".  What am I so wowed about?  All of the wonderful people out in blogland who visited my blog, left comments and chose to follow me!  Wow is all I can say. Thank you for all your wonderful comments! Who would have thought that one little post could result in such excitement! 

As I mentioned, one of the reasons I was excited about my foam dice is that I could customize them and use them to practice subitizing in my class.  These will be a great addition to my favourite, easy to use subitizing resource:

Dot Card and Ten Frame Activities - by the Winnipeg School Division

I was given this package at a math workshop a couple of years ago and I use the activities regularly throughout the year.  It takes little prep and the activities are great for whole class, small group, homework or to send out with students who need extra practice.  Hope you enjoy it as much as I do! And thanks to the authors at the Winnipeg School Division for the wonderful resource! 

Happy Thursday! 


Monday, July 16, 2012

Monday Made It.....A Blog!

Does creating a blog really count as a Monday Made It?  Here's hoping it does. And in case it doesn't I do have a little classroom "made it" to share with you. Thanks to Tara for making it possible!
Quiet Dice 

I've been admiring foam dice for a while now...too many years to admit! But just couldn't justify the price. (Crazy expensive anytime I've seen them - like 64 dice for $30.00 expensive!)  So when I found these little gems at Michaels last week in the teacher section I was beyond excited. 

 It was a case of "buy them all before someone else comes and takes them" excitement!  So that's what I did.  There were six bags left so those six little bags came home with me.  (I didn't want any of them to feel left out!)  Now what is in these little bags - 25 foam cubes and 25 foam cylinders!!! Yes, 50 foam shapes for $1.00.  So for $6.00, I got 150 foam dice and 150 foam cylinders. Then using a paint pen (only $1.49 in the discount bin...with a surprise 50% off at the cash) I created my own dice. 

Oh the possibilities these little foam gems bring to my classroom - numeral cubes, regular dot cubes, custom dot cubes (subitizing practice anyone?), larger numbers, operations signs.... 

Suddenly I realized, 150 foam cubes was not enough.  So on a visit home to my parents I stopped by another Michaels store and bought another 8 bags.  (This time the shelves were full so I did leave a few bags for other teachers.) And, I just may share a bag or two with a fellow teacher who has been admiring foam dice as well. 

All my little goodies in their own bin

I was so excited with my creation I showed my darling husband the dice. Actually, I demonstrated them, asking him to close his eyes and listen.  His response "Quiet dice, where's the fun in that?"  Not hard to tell he's never spent a day in a classroom!  

As for those mounting piles of foam cylinders....I'm thinking they'll make some super cute (and quiet) mini Power Towers! 

Thanks for reading my first post! I'll be sure to come back and link up for Monday Made It again...with my Dollar Store version of a great math game! But don't wait until next Monday to come back...I'll be posting again soon with more classroom ideas!