April Currently

Aloha friends!  Time for one of my favorite Linky's!!

Right now my backyard is a disaster! The hubby is building himself a Man Cave in the back and I could not be happier!!

Now a place for him to store all of his junk toys, and a place for the kids to go and play when it's raining outside or when they want to have friends sleepover.  Ahhh, can't wait!

The downside to this is that it has been raining cats and dogs and my front yard is a jungle of weeds!!  It seriously it horrible.  I am too embarrassed to even post a  picture!!

April 1st begins the long haul into summer.  No more breaks, holidays or furlough days!! Full weeks of school!!  We also have to start getting ready for May Day, and it is not something I enjoy planning for.  The end result is always awesome though.

This year our kids are going to be dancing to Waka Waka by Shakira.  The teachers have to choreograph the whole thing and teach it to our classes.  I love dancing, but it takes me forever to learn a new dance.  The video below shows  exactly how I feel when I am learning a new hula!! I always feel like the woman in white!!

My advice for new bloggers is to do what is comfortable for you and don't compare yourself to anyone else!! Everyone is different and we all have amazing qualities.  Don't look at those numbers and just enjoy what you do!!

Don't forget to stop by and check out all the other fun links!!


Peek At My Week

Aloha friends and Happy Easter!!  I hope all of you are enjoying your day with loved ones and eating a few chocolate bunnies or Cadbury eggs along the way!

This was a three day weekend for me and since I had an extra day I decided to join Deedee's Peek At My Week Linky.  

I have admired everyone's plans for awhile and finally decided to share my own.  This was no small feat let me tell you!!

I love that I can look at this and quickly get a snapshot of my week!!  If you click on the pictures it will take you to the Powerpoint in Google Docs.  I could not make it into a PDF file because then all of the links wouldn't work.  So my cute fonts don't look as nice :(  

I WILL figure out how to do this for next time!!

Once I started creating I realized how many wonderful resources I use that have been created by other teachers. 

Each week I have a Star Student, but this year I called it Surfer of The Week.  My friend Tanja from Journey of a Substitute Teacher had this great pack.  It is perfect for my students to share out about themselves.

The rest of the class writes a nice letter to our Surfer.  I place them up on our Surfer of The Week board and then turn it into a nice book at the end of the week.

For my Daily 5 rotations I am using Lori's Writing Through The Spring to place in my Writing Center and my Sunshine and Rainbow literacy centers will be in my Word Work area.

On Fridays we always read the latest issue of Scholastic News.  This week I got some exciting news from Scholastic News.  One of their representatives contacted me and asked me if I would like to be a 2nd Grade advisor for them.  

Basically I read each issue with my class and then fill out a survey letting them know my thoughts on it.  The editors may also contact me and ask for my opinion on some of their issues throughout the year.  The best part about it is that I get paid in Scholastic Gift Certificates!  More books and resources for my class?  Yes please!!

Writer's Workshop is all about Rain this week, since we have had A LOT of it lately!

I was so excited to find a new Earth Day resource from Anna over at Simply Skilled In Second!
She makes some amazing resources and you need to check her out if you haven't already!

I am also using a new addition Scoot Game for my Intervention block from Gina over at Beach, Sand and Lesson Plans.

Finally this week we will be starting with our Beach Bucks.  The kids are just so excited they cannot stop talking about their money and jobs!!  They will get their first paycheck on Friday!

The rest of my plans are pretty easy to figure out, but if you have any questions please feel free to ask.

Oh!  The Math Facts Masters is something I use in my class that I haven't really finished yet.  Once I develop it fully I will share:)

Don't forget to stop by Deedee's fabulous blog and check out all the other amazing visual plans.


Five For Friday

Aloha Friday!!  My favorite day of the week!!  Again I am linking up with Kasey for her fun linky.

Well I went back to school this week and I made some fun posters to hang in my classroom to help with solving word problems.

How much do you love sharp pencils?  I am celebrating 700 followers with a sharpener giveaway.

If you have followed me for awhile you may know I don't love to cook and I often forget to eat.  There are so many other things to do, that stopping to eat kind of gets in the way.  Over Spring break I was in such a rush to get out and surf that I forgot to eat, more than once and then I had no energy:(

I think if I put this on the fridge it might help!  Don't know if the hubby will appreciate it though!

Finally I am having an end of the quarter sale.  It's the perfect time to snatch up those Spring Items and any out of season items you may have on your wish list.  I will have everything on sale at 20% off!

I hope you have a fantastic weekend!!


700 Followers!! Time For A Giveaway

Aloha friends!  I am so excited to see that I have over 700 followers today!! You all are awesome for following along.  I appreciate each and every person for stopping by and leaving me a comment here and there.  I do my best to reply and get back to all of you,  and hope you will forgive me when I reply a few days later!

I am excited to have a little giveaway to celebrate!  

How many of you have this  baby in your classroom?

This is from Classroom Friendly Supplies and I love the way it sharpens!  I have had lots of electric sharpeners, but they don't ever last an entire year!  Well I decided to try this "Old School" manual one this year after hearing so many great things. I can put it wherever I like without worry of not having an electrical outlet.

I have had this sharpener in my class all year and am ready to order another one to keep up with my kiddos.

I have to admit I have been a bit selfish with mine.  It sits on my desk, and only my pencil helper is allowed to use it.

I love the way it sharpens.  What teacher doesn't love sharp, lovely pencils?

It does take some getting used to, but once you teach your students how to use it, they love sharpening their pencils with it!  I plan to put my new one in my writing center.

Well, I contacted Troy over at Classroom Friendly Supplies and he is going to send one of these babies to one of my fantastic followers!!

All you have to do it enter my Rafflecopter.  I will choose a winner next week!

Oh, and did I mention that I will also be giving away 3 items from my TpT store?

Just a little thank you for being such great supporters!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Word Problems

Aloha friends!  It is Sunday morning and I was rudely awakened by happy birds outside my window!  It seriously sounds like a Jungle out there! (It kind of looks like one too;)

I have Monday and Tuesday off, then back to work on Wednesday and Thursday, and off again on Friday.  Do you have crazy weeks like this in your district?  Ever since we started Furlough days the schedule just seems so silly sometimes!

Since we are heading into the 4th quarter I would love to share a little item that I have been working on.

My kids really need a lot more practice with word problems to gear up for the third grade.  I know our state assessment is basically all word problems.

My high level math kids are really great at solving them, but I still have so many that just don't know how to get started to solve a problem.  We have gone over steps again and again:

1.  Read The Problem
2.  Underline the Question
3.  Find the Key Words
4.  Draw A Picture
5.  Write a Number Model
6.  Solve the problem 

For some kids those are way too many steps to remember, especially my little guys who have trouble just reading the problem.

So I came up with some word problems and formatted it into a graphic organizer to help my students focus on the question and all of these steps.

Without having to look at our class chart or refer to their math journals, everything they need to do is right on here.  

Most students remember to underline the question and that's about as far as they get.  Having them search for and write the key words will start them thinking and hopefully head them in the right direction.

Making them draw a picture will help those visual learners to connect what is happening in the story.

I tell my students that the number model should match the picture.  Is it showing addition or is it showing subtraction?  

I have many students who just look at the numbers and add them up EVERYTIME!

Once they have an answer they need to process what they did.

Have you noticed that your quickest problem solvers have the hardest time explaining how they got their answer?

They always write "I just knew it".

Common Core is pushing for students to use a variety of strategies to solve problems and also to have students be able to explain how they found their answer. 

This is just a sample of what you might get from a student.  With this format you can easily see if the student gets it, or really has no idea.  Sometimes they have the wrong answer, but their thinking was spot on.

Other times they have the correct answer, but have no idea how they got it. (Usually a friend told them).

I think this format will really slow some of my students down and make them think a little deeper as to how and why they got their answer. With daily practice I am hoping that their problem solving skills will improve and that this process becomes second nature.

I created these word problems so that students would practice a variety of skills.  They include 1 and 2 step word problems and cover 4 different Common Core standards.

Each page has two different word problems. These can easily be copied and placed in a binder, cut in half and made into a little booklet for the month, or glued into their math journals.  

These are on sale today in my TpT store.

If you like this format you can use this  freebie template  with your own kiddos. Just click on the picture to download from Google Docs.

How do you teach word problems?  Do you have anchor charts or posters? Do your students write out the steps?  I would love to hear about what you do in your class.


Five For Friday

Aloha friends! It's Friday and I am linking up with Kacey for her Five For Friday linky.

I am enjoying my Spring Break and have been doing all of my favorite things.

This is one of my favorite surf spots. Diamond Head is in Waikiki and I was able to surf here 3 days in a row.  The water was crystal clear and it was not crowded with tourists like most spots in Waikiki.

My oldest daughter turned 11 on Monday!!  

We celebrated with dinner at The Cheesecake Factory, yummy!!

Hawaiian Blogger Meet Up with Angelia from Extra Special Teaching and Nicole
from Teaching With Style!!  We had lots of fun having cocktails and chatting it up
at a little place called Tiki's in Waikiki.

Finally a family vacation is not complete until you do at least one touristy thing and buy
that cheesy picture that they offer!!


It's Your Lucky Day!

Aloha everyone!  Just a quick post to let you know that I am having a sale in my TpT store today.

All of my items will be 20% off today.

My latest digital papers

A new math game 

Spring Centers

Beach Bucks

Award Tags

It's a great time to stock up and get ready for Spring!

Check out Mrs. Wheeler's First Grade to see who else is having a sale.


Spring Break Bucket List Linky

It's here Spring Break!! I am off for almost two whole weeks.  Our district has thrown in a bunch of Furlough days to the mix so we go back to school on Wednesday March 27 and Thursday the 28th.  There is no school on Friday.  So I'm  not really counting those days, lol!

I am hooking up today with Brigid at The Daily Lesson Log for her Spring Break Bucket Linky.

These are some of the things I plan to do over the next few weeks:

Break in my new car

Hit the Beach

Taking a Staycation in Waikiki at the Pacific Beach Hotel

Meeting some fellow Hawaiian Bloggers -Angelia from Extra Special Teaching

And of course surfing and reading as much as possible.

If you are on Spring Break enjoy it!! If not I hope you have already enjoyed your time off, or you get your time soon.


Five For Friday

Whoo Hoo!! O-Fishally on Spring Break for almost 2 weeks!! I am so excited to kick back, surf, read and generally do whatever I want!!

I am hooking up with Kacey for her Five For Friday linky to share out a few fun pictures from my week.

Today I say Good-bye to my surf buddy.  She has seen a lot of sand, surfboards and kids in the last 6 years.  I am trading her in for something more reliable. 

I will miss my personalized little buddy :(

Our cute Leprechaun craft courtesy of All Students Can Shine.

My new Tom's :)))

Getting our kids involved in their first political protest-Marching against GMO's in Hawaii

Remembering the reason I gave up most worldly possessions and moved here:)

Don't forget to link up your pics!

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