Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Erica's Give-away!

Erica over at Erica's Elementary Excitement is doing a give-away to celebrate more than 100 followers and the prizes are great!  Grand prize is a $50 Lakeshore Learning card AND a $25 Target gift card!  I know you want to enter to win that!  (Or maybe you shouldn't so the odds are better in my favor!  j/k!)

If I were you, I'd go on over and enter her give-away celebration.  Completing her 2 requirements gives you 4 entries to win!

Go to Erica's Elementary Excitement!

Word Morphing Monsters

Here's a fun take on some word study. . .

In our county we have an AKS (Academic Knowledge and Skills) that focuses on adding/deleting/substituting sounds.  With Word Morphing Monsters the monsters are wreaking havoc on our words!  They are changing letters and transforming our words into new words.  In my new Literacy Center your students will have fun tracing the steps of these mischievous monsters as they morph your words letter by letter.

This is actually putting a cute spin on word ladders.  I usually use this at a center on my metal storage cabinet.  I have my students use the magnetic letters to build the starting word.  Then they change letters as the clues indicate.  With each step students pause to record the new word created when a letter is changed.  If you don't have a magnetic letter station or prefer to do it differently, you can use letter blocks or the alphabet block cards I have included in the packet.

If you prefer to use unifix cubes, my friend over at The Lesson Plan Diva has actually done something very similar using unifix cubes!  Check hers out too!

Click on the preview below to pick up this center on my TpT.

100 Followers?!? That calls for a sale!

Oh wow!  Thank you so much everyone!  I'm truly grateful for the response to the give-away (that lasts til Friday)!

Plug-n-Plan now has over 100 followers!  So in celebration of 100+ followers I'm now throwing a 2 day sale at my TpT store!  Everything is now 10% off including the Owl Time Unit!

Stop by and see if there's anything you'd like to get 10% off of.  Or pick up one of my free items!

Spread the word!  The sale lasts through Thursday midnight.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The Give-Away Continues . . .

Hey everyone! 

Thanks for such a wonderful response to the give-away.  I'm so excited!  I feel like I've finally got some momentum, so I'm about to start working on the next unit!

Just to let you know . . . the give-away will end on Friday at midnight, so if you want the Time File Folder game join the give-away!  Click on the link below to take you to my previous post with the give-away requirements.

Thanks!  Y'all are awesome!

This Deserves a Give-Away!!!!

Oh, wow!

I've talked about it til I got sick of it, but the time is finally here!

The Time Unit is FINISHED!!!

I now present to you . . . my owl themed unit on time . . .

This 41 page unit includes differentiated centers, a math journal prompt, games, practice sheets, and assessments! Click the picture to go to my TpT to purchase.

In celebration of finishing my 1st unit for the blog I'm going to give away the "Hoo's Turn Is It" differentiated file folder game if you do the following:

1- Follow me on my blog
2- Follow me on Facebook (Plug-n-Plan)
3- Follow my TpT (
4- Blog about the unit and giveaway!

Write me a comment here to let me know when you're done and include your email address.  Then I'll email you the 8 page differentiated center!

Thanks for stopping by!  I really hope you enjoy this unit!

*Please note that this giveaway has now expired.  Click here to download the giveaway game!  Thanks for visiting!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Seconds, Minutes, or Hours?

Every year when we start our unit on time I'm reminded that at their young age, most 1st graders are unaware of the concept of time.  It's kinda funny to pre-assess their concept of time by asking them to guess the duration of one minute.  Have you ever asked them to put their heads down and close their eyes while you watch the time?  You direct the students to raise their hand with their eyes closed when they think a minute has passed by.  In my 9 years of teaching I think I may have had maybe 8 students who already knew that there are 60 seconds in one minute and used this information to come close to the minute mark.  As I watch for those little hands to pop up it sometimes only takes a matter of seconds before a hand is raised!  There are also a few hands that never pop up when I cut off the experiment about 2 minutes into the wait.  We forget how we had to train ourselves and our sense of time as we were growing up.

That's why I created this little pocket chart center!  So students could contemplate, practice, and train their minds to understand the concept of time.  At this center students will need to sort activities that take either a few seconds, minutes, or hours.  They will also come up with a few activities of their own to sort.



Everyone has a need or desire to feel special.  Unique or different.  We like to think there's something that makes us shine just a little brighter.  Then again, it can also be thrilling to find out what you have in common with others!

So often we have our students do projects and work that is very cookie-cutter.  Everyone answers the same.  These are great and easy ways for us to assess, but sometimes it's nice to make it personal!  That's one of the things I like about mini books.  It can offer an opportunity to personalize the content and make it your own.

This Time mini book is similar to some other books you may have come across, but I designed it so that a student can easily personalize the content to make it his/her own!  It reflects the student's school day but asks the student to add details as well as a chance to sequence the events of the day to fit the student in particular!

You can use this mini book as a center or seatwork.  It can even be used as an assessment.  I hope both you AND your students enjoy it!

Click on the preview picture to get it from my TpT store!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Can YOU help me?

I'm searching for bulletin board ideas to sustain me through the next year.  Can you help?

For the past 9 years I've had colorful fabric as the background on my bulletin board in my classroom.  It doesn't fade nor does it get full of holes from the push pins!  Here's my problem:  the fire marshall has cracked down on us.  Because our building is older and does not have a sprinkler system we are only allowed to cover 20% of our wall.  That means that if we cover our bulletin boards with cloth or butcher paper background, we are already over our 20% coverage limit!!!  That makes for a very drab classroom.  =(

I know there are a lot of creative minds out there, so do you have any ideas for me?  I'd love to hear them!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Cute Shout Out!I

I love how you can connect, network, and glean so much off of other fabulous teachers through the blogging community.  No wonder it's so addictive!

Head on over to Primary Connections.  Beth is conducting a little State Shout Out.  See if there's anyone from your state here on the blogging community!

Take me to Primary Connections!

Updated File Folder Game!

Remember this annoying Time Unit I keep talking about?  Well, the first product I posted was my "Hoo's" Turn Is It?file folder game.  I've finally gone back and differentiated it as I had always planned.  See, that's one of the reasons my units are taking so long.  I'd like to differentiate my products to meet the needs of your low, average, and high learners.  (I know there's a nicer, more p.c. way of saying that.  How would you name the differentiation so as to not offend anyone?)  You can always differentiate a product on your own, but I'd like to have them differentiated for you already so all you have to do is as the name says: Plug-n-Plan!

Anyways, the new differentiated  file is up on my TpT account.  If you've already purchased it, go back and download the new file.  It's got a lot more to it now!

I hope you enjoy!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Start Organized!

Although it's summer right now I'm sure a lot of you are already thinking about the start of the school year.  There's always so much to do and it can get kind of overwhelming.  I know that I always try to start the year by organizing and giving everything a place and a label.  I intend on starting organized until . . . I realize how much I have to do and just how little time I have to do it in!  Then the things that were set aside to be organized and put away get shoved into any unseen spot.  You know how it goes, right?

Well would it help you if you had a way of organizing your guided reading groups before the year started?

I've tried many ways to keep myself organized with my Guided Reading groups, but a few years ago I started organizing myself using daily and weekly charts for my reading groups.  Over the years I've tweaked a few things and finally have something that really works for me. Here's what these forms look like filled out.  Click on the link to get them from my TpT.  I'm sharing these for free download (on my TpT site) for you to try if you are still looking for a better way to organize your Guided Reading groups.  (Free in PDF form.  If you're like me and like to add names, personalize the font, etc. you can purchase it for just $1.00.)  I hope you will find it helpful.

Click here to download the FREE PDF.

Click here to get the Word file.

Monday, June 6, 2011

The Best Part of Summer

Summer vacation has always been something to look forward to.  Like most of you I've had summer vacation since I was 5 years old.  Even after graduating grade school there was Summer Break during college (even if you decided to take summer courses, there was still Summer Break)!  As a teacher Summer Break has not gone away!

Last week I spent 3 extra days after the actual start of our break to finish up at school to purge, clean, and pack my classroom.  I felt it was essential since I missed the 1st month of school with maternity leave and put the contents of my classroom in the hands of my wonderful sub.  As you know, however, no matter how wonderful the sub she is still not going to do things exactly the way you would have done.  So at the beginning of the year this also means putting things in the right places.  I just found some things last week that I was unable to find all year long!  Now that that's done . . . it is officially Summer!

This year, Summer Break has taken on a whole new meaning.  For the 1st time Summer Break means I get to be a stay at home mom.  For those of you who are mothers you know just how precious this gift is.  I am literally tearing up today on my 1st official day at home with my 10 month old, Analise.  It astounds me to see how much she changes every single day and proves to me just how very blessed I am.  I wish you could see her crawling around, laughing, giggling, smiling, and babbling away!  She's showing off her new words and her newfound monster voice!  =)

Who can resist this cutie pie?!?!

Other than hugging, kissing, playing with and feeding my lovebug . . . I'll be working on her baby book and goodies that I can post here and on my TpT site!

So here's something new:  Time Dominoes!

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