Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Finally a Giveaway!!!!

As many of you know I recently reached 100 followers and had been planning on a giveaway.  Well needless to say it happened to fall on the week my National Boards is due and its been Ca-Razy!  But I have finally put the giveaway together and I hope it will be worth the wait!

I have decided to give away 2 items from my TpT store to 2 lucky bloggers!  Here are the ways you can enter:
1. Follow my blog 
3. Follow my TpT store
4.  Follow my new Teacher's Notebook Store!!!  I only have 1 item up right now, more to come!
5. Blog about this giveaway, linking back to this post

That's 5 chances to enter this giveaway!!!!  Make sure you leave a comment for each entry.  

I will choose the winners on April, 2, even though April Fools day would make for a fun drawing ha!!!!

Good Luck!


Thursday, March 22, 2012

So Close To A Giveaway!!!!!!!

I've been sitting at around 90ish followers for a few weeks now and have been waiting to hit the 100 followers mark and were getting super close ladies and gents!!!!!!  I am thinking up a super sweet giveaway once the last person crosses over to the dark side twin/taco side and becomes a member of my cult  my blog!!!  I'm super excited and hopefully by this time tomorrow I'll be posting an actually giveaway and not just a tease for a giveaway!

Oh yea National Boards are still kicking my rear!!!!  I promise in 2 weeks I'll be back to regular posts and making cutesy things.  First up will be the Titanic Unit!!!!!  Who's excited about it in 3D
 This girl!!!! ~~~~~~~~~ >Photobucket

Monday, March 19, 2012

I'm Back in Action!!!!!!

Just to calm any of your fears, I'm still alive!  With my National Boards deadline looming, I've been preoccupied with that, but only 2 more weeks and it will be sent off!  I feel horrible that I haven't posted in almost 2 weeks!!!!!  And not to mention I've had no time to read up on all the awesome things ya'll have been up to either :(

I have been super busy with some awesome lessons at school that I have to share with you.  We finished up our Social Studies series on the Titanic and had a local expert come in and share her artifacts with our third graders.  I was so excited when Dr. Ratchford agreed to come and talk to our kiddos.  She is a professor at one of our local colleges and I know how busy she must be!  She had them eating out of the palm of her hand!  What was really cool was the fact that she told stories about 3 real people from the Titanic and we had studied 2 of them and the kids that 'became' them for the 2 weeks were beside themselves with excitement!

Check out this awesome life jacket from that her husband purchased for her from the movie Titanic!  

Actual piece of coal from the Titanic!  I am actually touching a piece of history!!!!!  How cool is that?!???!?!?!? Dr. Ratchford visited the crash sight several years ago and go this while on the trip.

This is a copy of a newspaper that was found folded up in a suitcase and brought to the surface 85 years later.  You can't see it from this picture, but besides a few water spots, it is in excellent condition.  I could even read several of the articles!!!!!

Replica third class silverware.  Sorry for the glare, darn flash!

Our next SS adventure took us to the Biltmore House!  I told ya'll about this awesome trip I'd been planning since October and I can't believe that it was finally time to actually go!!  I have been a few times myself and once as a child in elem school, but never get over the grandeur of the house.  And to think that this super rich guy decided to build it right here in NC!  Crazy!  When we talked about how the largest house in America was located in our state my kids were blown away.  

It was so foggy the morning we arrived it reminded me of a scary movie!

Getting ready to go inside

Private Promenade.  I told the kids I would wait here while they toured the house! 

I loved how all the down spouts had dragons on them.  We learned an interested fact that Gargoyle means gargle in french some other language and that is why people put Gargoyles on their houses back then and used them as rain spouts.  They shoot water away from the house from the roof.  However, the Biltmore House had gutters, so the Gargoyles were simply decoration.

In front of one of the impressive Lion statues.  One of my kiddos tried to get on the lion.  

View from the Courtyard

It was a gorgeous day to tour!

My little lovelies in front of my future home the Biltmore

Inside the Winter Garden.  Boy was it HOT in there!

Backside view coming from the gardens

Check out the awesome spiral staircase.  There is also a staircase along the outside that follows that on the inside.

Saw this on the way home!  Couldn't believe it was a complete rainbow, perfect end for a perfect day!

The next unit I am working on and supposed to be starting tomorrow is government.  I got nothing for this one and am asking all you out there in blog world to steer me near any good ideas you have seen!  Need lots of help because my boards are driving me bananas and have no time for anything else!  

I did however go to Jesus Camp AKA Emmaus this weekend and have some much needed time with God.  It is amazing how he works, isn't it?  He always knows just what I need.  I spent a great weekend fellowshipping with some wonderful ladies and a handful of guys.  I didn't realize how hard my heart had become.  I hope to begin each day reading about how much God loves me so I don't soon forget!  

Extra bonus, it was Monday Night Taco Night tonight!!!!!!  Always love a good Taco Night.  We had mexican last night too!  Wonder how many times we will have it this week?????


Friday, March 9, 2012

A Phone Call Changes Everything

Most of you know the dark cloud of doom  horrible week I've been having. It all started when I woke up Monday morning and had a feeling that it was going to be rough.  This week has gone on to be one of the worst of the entire year!  My group of kids is great and they always seem to surprise me with their want to learn more.  Well this week my kids changed places with some that didn't want to learn!  I think the reason for all this 'no learning' is coupled with the fact that we had benchmarks this week, I HATE TESTING! (just had to throw that out there) and I am trying to finish up Dibels assessments and that means my kids have to do tons of independent work UGH!  All I can say is thank goodness its Friday, because if it wasn't I would have to take a mental health day tomorrow.

So on to this mysterious phone call that caught your attention.  Each year our district has a writing contest for the Proudest Third Grader in Gaston County.  The winner for our school came from yours truly's class.  The problem is, she had since moved to another school in our district.  I was able to get her phone number and talk to her mom about going to the special dinner.  Now onto the really great part!!!!!  When I was talking to my former student, she told me that when she started at the school several students were bashing our school talking about how the kids there aren't very smart and that it basically sucked for lack of a better word.  Well my little firecracker former student let them have it!  She told them she was very smart and it was all because of our school and her teacher!  (made me blush!!!)  The kids at her new school told her to prove and she said, "I will!"  She then went on to tell me that she had been making A's on her assignments and that when her classmates asked how she was so smart her simple response was, "Duh because I went to Rhyne!"  I was like a proud mama listening to her tell me these things!  That would have been enough but then I talked to her mom who told me that she had taken work we had done in my class and showed it to her new teacher telling her that my former student was very challenged while in my class.  The teacher's response was, "well we will touch on some of that."

Woo-Hoo!!!!!!  Talk about walking on cloud nine!  This was just what I needed to hear on this awful week.  Because my school is a title-one school we are a lower performing school.  My school and our teachers are constantly made to feel like we are not doing enough for the kids, or that it is the teachers fault that the kids are not performing.  I know this is a load of crap, but this parent calling me and letting me know that what I was doing was not only working but....wait for it....challenging her student validated EVERYTHING I have been doing.  What a way to end a absolutely horrible week.

Monday, March 5, 2012

So Glad for Tacos and My Bloggy Friends!

I have not had a day like I had today in a LOOOOONG time!  It was horrible!  I woke up this morning and had a feeling that it was going to be a rough one, but I had no idea how rough it would be.  My National Boards stuff is due at the end of the month (and I am wasting time blogging catching up with all my friends instead of working on it!), I had to lead a tech training session today and all my Dibles data has to be in in 7 days!  The day started out bad and ended up in the deepest pit possible.  Ok maybe I'm being a little dramatic, but you get the gist, HORRIBLE DAY!  

On the upside, it was Taco night and I got to enjoy delicious tacos with the hubs, my girlies, and my bloggy bff....Amber!  We ALWAYS have the best time!  If it hadn't been for the tacos, I do believe this day would have been a dark cloud over my whole week.  

You guys out in the blogosphere also made my day more tolerable.  I have the best bloggy friends out there.  I was honored to be given awards from 2 lovely ladies. 

First Tamera from My Heart Belongs in First gave me

She even said I was one of her daily reads!!!  That made me feel ah-mazing!  
I am going to have to break the rules for this one and post my 15 blogs later.  With my long to-do list getting longer by the minute, I just don't have time right now!  

My 2nd Award came from sweet Elizabeth (great name, huh!)  from Fun in Room in 4B

My Photo

She gave me the biggest compliment anyone could with the Top 10 Blog Award!
Top 10 TBA

As if that wasn't enough, she said the nicest things about me which made me feel all fuzzy inside.  
I will pass this one on when I have more time!  

I feel so lucky to have such awesome support from all of ya'll!  When I've had a bad day, I can always count on getting on here and ya'll making me feel so much better.  Ohhh and my girls make me feel better too!  

How can you not smile when you see they are both ready for the Zombie Apocalypse!  

Friday, March 2, 2012

My Heart Will Go On!!!!!

We ended our study of the Titanic yesterday with an awesome celebration.  As you know, each student was given an actual passenger that was aboard Titanic.  I had 6 kids in each of the three classes.  Our grade level put all the kids together for our Day Aboard Titanic celebration.  Our kiddos were told they could dress according to their class for the day.  Boy did they take that to heart!  We had some fancy, fancy dresses and sharp suits!

Lady Duff Gordon and Ida Straus 
First Class Passengers

Second Class Passengers

Third Class Passengers

John Jacob Astor IV and Wife, Madeline
Are you surprised I was married to the richest guy on the ship??

Lady Duff Gordon and Margaret Brown
Single Ladies having fun!
Isador and Ida Straus -Co-owners of Macy's Department Store
Ida was played by my principal!  Isn't she great?????

The fun started with lunch.  We decided to have 3 tables set, one for each class.  The first class table had a nice dark blue sheet of bulletin board paper  tablecloth, candles, and they each had their fork and napkin placed for them.  Of course my table was the first class table!!!  The talk during lunch consisted of some of the following, "Oh, I am so rich." "I tried one bite of this dish, and I want something else.  Waiter, take it away!" "I love being rich" "I really want to try out the Turkish Bath" "Let's go for a swim in OUR swimming pool"  It was so much fun!

John Jacob Astor IV, the richest man on the Titanic
The second class table was covered with a white sheet of bulletin board paper tablecloth and they had a folded napkin with their fork.  Their table conversation was more light and less about themselves! Hot topics of conversation included, "Look at those snotty first class people!" "I'm glad we don't just talk about money." There was lots of laughing at first class talking about themselves.

Passengers Eva Hart and Ruth Becker

The third class table didn't have anything set on it.  Several students commented that it wasn't fair they couldn't sit at a fancy table.  We explained that the third class passengers wouldn't have had as nice of things.  Their table conversation consisted of some of the following, "I really don't like those first class people!" "Our food is great!" "First class think they are better than everyone else." "We have the most fun of all the people!"
Third Class didn't mind their modest accommodations

We gave our kids some sorbet  ice cream to cleanse their palette.  Then it was up to prepare to board for the Titanic's maiden voyage.  We began our trip by having our classes rotate through 3 stations.  We had a Kidblog activity where they created a fact card for their person predicting whether they lived or died.

Checking out their passengers info for the blog post

The second station was creating a newspaper article for the South Hampton Gazette that would have run the day after Titanic sank.  My kids got really creative when coming up with headlines and articles to fill up their papers.

The third station idea was courtesy of Beth Newingham.  She had listed in her Titanic unit that she had used a Palm Pilot program to figure out how prices would have inflated and had a worksheet to go with it.  I found an app for my iPods that I was able to use and the kids LOVED it!  Here was my favorite from the list: 2nd class room cost in 1912: $60 2012: $1,200!!!!  I thought that the price of the first class suite would be sky high, but to go from $60, which doesn't seem much to me, to $1,200, WOW!

We couldn't have a day on Titanic without dancing.  First we introduced the kids to the waltz and told them that was how first class passengers would have danced.  At first we had very few boy/girl pairs, but as the music continued we had more join in.  Third class dancing was much more fun for all included!  The kids commented that they were free to dance however they wanted to and didn't have to dance with a boy/girl!

Third Class Dance Time

Finally it was time for the passengers to find out their fate.  I had posted their passengers pic on the SMART Board with either survived or perished.  I had the kids predict the fate of each passenger.  It was so fun to watch each group of students to find out if they made it off the Titanic or not.  Some students crossed their fingers and said things like, "Please live, Please live!"  Others cheered when they lived or let out sighs when they went down with the ship.
The Unsinkable Molly Brown learned she had survived!
The last thing we did before docking was to show kids some clips of the Titanic today.  They really got into how the Titanic was a real event and over 1,500 people lost their lives.  Before, I think that most who had heard of the Titanic simply thought it was a fictional event.  Showing them those clips, made it real for them.   We had some great conversations during our class debate.  I told each of my kids I wanted them to convince others to join their class.  Remarkably, one group of 6 all reverted to 3rd class!  They stated they wanted to be free to do what they wanted and not wear tight, stuffy clothes.

Everyone had a great time and learned a lot about the Titanic (which is most important, right?) The funniest thing that happened during this whole unit was when my teammate and I were looking for clips on Youtube we came across a preview of Titanic 2, which we HAD to watch!  Didn't you know, Jack is Back?  See for yourself!

Even though the Titanic is gone, my heart will go on and keep beating for her!  I hope to finish up my Titanic pack this weekend to have it up in my store. Hope everyone has a great weekend.


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