Monday, 31 March 2014

My Teacher Uniform

Do you have a teacher uniform? Now, I don't mean khaki pants and a polo that is mandated by your district, but a select few items that you seem to wear over and over - because I sure do. I'm here today to talk about those favorites that I always seem to gravitate to.

It all starts with a pair of skinny pants. Jeans, black or colored, I like them all. Of course, sometimes I'll throw on some straight or wide leg, but I really like the look and feel of skinny pants, especially if they are super stretchy.

My favorite skinnies for work are the Ultra Skinny Pants from the Gap. They are so stretchy; they are the next best thing to yoga pants.

Via Gap

Before I choose my shirt for the day, I need the perfect long tank/camisole. I wear tanks everyday, even outside of school.

The best tank/tunic I ever had was from Forever 21 the Basic Tunic Cami. I got it during university and only stopped wearing it in the last year or so (because it may or may not be a little bit holey). I love a long tank, and this was perfect and kept its shape much longer than you would think of the price tag (it was CHEAP then and is still cheap now, only a few dollars).

Via Forever 21

Next comes the blouse. I prefer something a little longer and looser, since I am always moving around during the day. The last thing you want is to be erasing something from the SMARTBoard and suddenly feel a breeze across your stomach and lower back.

I love the look of this Factory Printed Teagan Ruffle Popover (what a name - I was going to call it a sleeveless shirt). I have a similar style (including the white with black polka dots) and the fit is amazing.

Via J. Crew Factory

To top it off, I've got to add the cardigan. I am always cold, so sometimes I go for a thicker cardigan, in the warm weeks of June it might be thinner, but without fail, I am almost always layering.

I have a million cardigans but I recently purchased my absolute favorite. It is the Factory Clare Cardian (also from J. Crew Factory) and I already want to purchase it in every color. It fits amazing and is so soft - perfection!

Via J. Crew Factory

Don't forget about the feet. I just love a comfy ballet flat. This is where my wardrobe is lacking. I wear cheap ballet flats, because I haven't found the perfect pair. On my wish list? I would love to try a pair of Tieks. They are so adorable, I just can't seem to justify the $175 price tag . . . yet!

Via Tieks

And finally, the accessories. I need to work on my accessorizing. I wear the same pearl earrings and chain necklace everyday and I'd love to add some bangles. I recently purchased a tortoiseshell which I love, but I might need to add a few more items to my wrist candy!

Via Neiman Marcus

So that's my teacher uniform, what does your's look like?

(I don't know if this post was a good idea, it just makes me want to go shopping!)

Friday, 28 March 2014

Teachers Pay Teachers Spring Cleaning Sale

Well now that Spring has finally sprung, it's time for a little cleaning. Well, why don't I procrastinate about that and instead go shopping!

I'm joining with a ton of fabulous sellers at TpT to celebrate spring with a Spring Cleaning Sale!

Graphic via Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah Designs
My entire store will be 20% off until Monday - here are some of my favourites:

Happy Spring - more importantly, happy weekend!

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Making Predictions with Picture Books

I recently created a new unit of reading comprehension printables. It covers topics such as connecting, visualizing, inferring, and predicting and is meant to be used with picture books.

I cannot stop talking about how much I LOVE picture books. I think picture books are so essential to not only primary classrooms, but intermediate ones too. I blogged {HERE} about how I used picture books to teach genres and I'm back today to talk a little about predicting with picture books.

During read-alouds, stopping a book and asking several students to predict can be very enlightening. You'll find that some students make great predictions and some students may be a bit (or very far) off the mark. I think before you get to this stage, you have to model predicting to students. Stop the book and use your thinking voice out loud to tell students what is your prediction and what clues you are using to make that prediction.

When predicting, remind the students to use the clues in the text and pictures. I often use far-off ridiculous examples as a way to remind students that we need to predict from the evidence provided to us. If I'm reading Goldilocks and the Three Bears, would it be a good idea to predict that suddenly a dinosaur will come along and step on the bears' home? Not unless I'm reading Mo Willems' Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs (which, by the way, would make a great story to compare to Goldilocks and the Three Bears during a fairy tale unit!).

If you're reading a book that has a semi-unpredictable ending, such as Mo Willems' That is Not a Good Idea (can you tell I'm a Mo Willems fan?), re-read the story with students, looking for possible clues to predict the ending.

So now onto a short list of some predicting favourites:

1) What Do You Do With a Tail Like This? by Steve Jenkins - One of my favourite non-fiction authors, Steve Jenkins' books are always fantastic. Use this book to have students predict what each body part is used for, using appearance clues.

Via Amazon

2) Stephanie's Ponytail by Robert Munsch - Your students will love the hilarious hairstyles as all the students (and teachers) try to copy Stephanie. Will Stephanie really shave her hear, or will your students be able to predict an appropriate alternative?

Via Amazon
3) If You Give a . . . series by Laura Numeroff - You could do a book study on this series by Laura Numeroff, with students predicting the crazy shenanigans of the various animals.

Via Amazon

4) Knuffle Bunny Free by Mo Willems - Of course it wouldn't be a picture book list of mine if I didn't throw in a Mo Willems book! Have students predict whether Trixie will find Knuffle Bunny and what might she do with him if she does find him.

Via Amazon

4) Enemy Pie by Derek Munson - Not only is this a great book to talk about friendships and bullying, but take the time to have your students predict the outcome of the enemy pie.

Via Amazon

These are just a few of the many picture books that are great for teaching predicting. What are some of your favourites?

Sunday, 16 March 2014

A Place Value Freebie with the Manic Monday Linky

Sundays sure are great . . . when Monday is the start of Spring Break! Although we don't get two weeks, I sure am thankful for this week off; hopefully it will be filled with a little R & R!

So onto the freebie. I'm linking up again this week with Manic Monday at Classroom Freebies.

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday
My freebie this week is brand new, I just finished it this morning. Taking the idea from my Place Value Mystery Number Cards, I've created a Place Value Mystery Number "I Have . . . Who Has?" game.

This freebie contains 36 place value cards with 3-digit numbers and is perfecting for assessing students' oral comprehension of place value. Click the pictures to check the freebie out.
If you are in school tomorrow, and celebrating St. Patrick's Day
Let me know if you enjoy the freebie, and if you are on Spring Break this week, enjoy that

Sunday, 9 March 2014

St. Patrick's Day Freebie!

Well, once again it's been a little while since my presence has graced this blog, but this time I come with gifts - a little St. Patrick's Day freebie to be exact! I'm also linking up with Manic Monday at Classroom Freebies, so make sure to head over there and see what other freebies are up for grabs.

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday
This year, St. Patrick's Day is on Spring Break (which reminds me, one more week until Spring Break, wahoo!) so we will be celebrating in green this Friday. You might find this little freebie useful if you plan on doing any St. Patrick's Day reading or writing this week:

It contains one story elements printable:

4 writing papers:

and nine vocabulary cards:

You can click any of the picture to check it out on TpT or {HERE} to download.

I also recently finished a new unit that I have been working on forever - Reading Comprehension Printables. These 20 printables work for any picture book and can be used repeatedly through the year to assess student comprehension and reading strategies.

Most of the printables come in three versions - unlined, primary-lined and regular-lined - and cover connecting, visualizing, predicting, re-telling, responding, inferring & more. Click the picture or {HERE} to check it out if you are interested!

What are your plans for St. Patrick's Day? More importantly, when is your Spring Break?