Interactive eBooks

Aloha friends! I hope you are having a relaxing summer vacation.  I have been enjoying my couch a lot more and catching up on a bit of reading.

I wanted to share a cool new resource that is available for your classroom.  

Bright World eBooks are non-fiction interactive books for kids.
I was fortunate to try their first ebook called Ocean Forests.

Basically this is an animated ebook all about Kelp Forests.  The graphics are amazing and the background music and sound of the ocean is awesome.  

The story is well written and is uses rich and authentic vocabulary.  There is a dictionary built right in to help students understand new vocabulary.  I learned so much about kelp forests!

Students can listen to the story, read it by themselves and even record themselves reading it.  I'm sure students would love to read it again and listen to their own voices.  Such a great way to practice fluency.

Students can also explore the kelp forest in the Explore section.  They can manipulate the screen by touching it and it will move around within the forest.  They can also touch the animals and it will tell them facts about each one.

The last section has some games for students to play.  Both are fun ways to learn more facts about kelp forest.

I am really excited to use this in class this year, I know my kids will love this story and it's a great ebook to add to our science section.  I'm looking forward to seeing what the next story will be.
The price of the app is cheaper than a regular paperback and it is much more interactive.

The app is available on iTunes.  You can click here to check it out ---> Ocean Forests

You can also learn more about Bright World eBooks on their website.  It's definitely worth checking out!


Freebie Friday

Aloha Friday!!

Just a quick post today to tell you I have a freebie for you.  
It's not a forever freebie, you can only get it until June 30th.

This is a modified version of my Blushing Pink planner to give you a little
preview and help you get ready for the school year.

Head over to my Facebook Page and click on the Fans Only Freebie tab.

If you grab it and use it let me know what your think or better yet
 send me a picture of your finished product!

Have a great weekend!


Monday Made It-Seat Sacks

Aloha friends!  How is your summer going?  I am all over the place with creating, reading, cooking, cleaning etc... But I am loving every minute of it.  Today I am linking up with Tara for one of my favorite linky parties during the summer to show you how I created my own seat sacks.

I have always wanted to get seat sacks for my classroom, but they are pretty pricey and I don't like the colors that are available commercially.  I borrowed a seat sack from a colleague to see how difficult it would be to make.

This is what it looked like and I wanted them to fit my 12" chairs that I have in my classroom.
Simple enough. Pocket in front and pocket in back to hang.
(These are available on Amazon, just click the picture)

So I headed out to the ONE fabric store we have on island hoping to find some Duck Cloth.

Score!!!  I found all of the colors I wanted and bought a yard of each. 
The pink, yellow and green were a poly/cotton blend and only cost $6 a yard.
The blue and purple were duck cloth and cost $9 a yard.

The cloth was 58" across so I was able to cut out 4 pieces from a yard - 14"x36".

 I sewed up the edges on opposite sides.

Then I measured 6" for the pocket that connects to the chair. 
(That was what the seat sack I borrowed measured)

 I pinned it and then I pinned the book pocket up to meet it on the opposite side,
but I did not overlap them.

Then I sewed right up both sides.

Turn it inside out and you are done!

I had a workshop at school so I took one with me to see how it would fit on my chairs.

They look awesome!!  
I was able to make 4 from one yard of material.  
That comes out to $2.25 a sack for the duck cloth!
The others were only $1.50 each.  I'm calling this a win :)

I can't wait to see how they all look when I head back to the classroom.
(Well I think I can wait, I'm not quite ready to go back yet!)

What crafty things have you been up to?  
Head over and link up with Tara or just check out the other awesome craftiness.


Why I Love Summer

Aloha friends!  I am kicking back relaxing at home again and decided to link up with my sweet friend Aimee over at Primarily Speaking.

What do I love about summer?  The question really is What don't I love about summer?

Me Time

This year I became a full time single mama and I have been one busy lady!!  With work, running my girls around to all of their after school activities, cooking, cleaning, etc... there hasn't been a lot of time for me.  My girls are spending the summer in California with their dad and I honestly didn't know what to do with myself when they left!


My favorite time to surf is summer.  The waves are small and the water uncrowded
because everyone is at work. I can also stay out there as long as I want!
One morning I met BU the Surfing Pig out in the water.  
He definitely caught more waves than me!!

He even has his own YouTube channel!!


It is so nice to dress up and talk with adults!

Working Out / Eating Right

On June 1st I took on the Whole30 challenge.  It is now Day 18 and I have stuck with it and I love it!
With the girls gone cooking for myself and sticking to it has been much easier than if they were here.
I also started PiYo.  I'm not a fan of yoga.  Everyone tells me it is so good for you, but every time I do it I am so bored! I need to move!  Then I saw a video from Chalene Johnson telling about how she created PiYo which uses Yoga and Pilates and you are moving around the whole time.  So I thought I would give it a try.   I love it!!  In just a few weeks with clean eating and doing PiYo everyday I have slimmed down and feel so much stronger.


I am so stinking excited to go to Vegas in 2 weeks!!  I will be there for the whole week so I need 5 different outfits for each day along with some accessories. I have been doing lots of in store and on line shopping to get ready!  The dress above is one of my purchases.  I bought another  dress and some new shoes.  I picked up a bathing suit yesterday, and I may need a few new shirts too.  Whether I was going to Vegas or not, I love shopping.  However, my bank account does not!!

What are your favorite things about summer?  Head over to Primarily Speaking to link up!


Teaching With Intention-Chapter 3

Aloha everyone and welcome to Week 3, Chapter 3 of our book study on Teaching With Intention.

My lovely co-hosts this week are The Learning Chambers and Sassy Savvy Simple Teaching.

Can I just say I loved this chapter which is all about your classroom environment.  

How does your classroom make you feel?  Is it conducive to learning or does it seem off a bit?  What can you do to make your classroom all your own, but also involve students so that they can feel it is a safe and welcoming space. There are some steps that are outlined in the book to help you get started.

Many of us are lucky to have been in the same room for many years and we feel pretty comfortable with our spaces.  However, some teachers are not so lucky.  They may be placed in a classroom only a few days before school starts or even after.  Classrooms may be filled with leftovers from the last teacher.  Don't be afraid to get rid of it!!  I know we all love to hoard those little things that we may someday use, but you need to just pack up anything you don't need and clear the space for what is important to you.

I've been in my classroom for over 10 years and I am always purging what I haven't used.  If it hasn't been used in 3 years, I dump it or give it away.  Once you have a clean slate it's easier to begin the next step.  Debbie suggests stepping outside your classroom and looking in as if it was the first time.
Then answer these questions:

How soon do you head back to school to set up your classroom?  I am guilty of going in 2-3 weeks in advance and arranging my classroom.  I need to play around with the configurations and often I spend hours moving and rearranging to make it functional.  Here is a list of guiding questions that Debbie suggests that can help you to get organized before you even set foot in your classroom.

So now you know what areas you want in your class, it's time to put it into action.  Each year I head back in to my classroom and the furniture is piled up in the middle of the room.

From there I can get a good idea of where I want things to go and slowly start moving everything around.  It's great to map it all out and get a general sense of where everything will be.

I have individual spaces all throughout my classroom.




 Writing Area


I try to label everything I have and have done my best to make it functional.  We can't always have our dream spaces, but we can do our best to make it as close to our visions as possible.

There is a section in the book that Debbie tells you to consider asking a colleague to come into your room and  look around.  Then ask them to think about these questions:

Feel free to answer any of these questions in the comments.  I would love to know what you think.
How do you usually prepare for a new year?  Has this chapter inspired you to reassess your classroom setup?  Make sure to link up and share your thoughts on this chapter.

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