Sit back and enjoy a cup.

Sit back and enjoy a cup.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

T.G.I.F. at Mrs. Mc's Place -The Winter and Holiday Fun Continues

Still looking for craft ideas for the classroom?  Here's a cute idea that can double as a gift idea as well.  Use the link to see the needed materials and detailed directions.  

If you're looking for more ideas and lessons to use in your classroom, look no further.  Here is an assortment of all kinds of activities to make your season lighter and your students brighter. So kick back, relax and check out what the TpT elves have to offer.


Friday, December 4, 2015

T.G.I.F. at Mrs. Mc's Place -Winter and Holiday Fun

Tis the season for all kinds of celebrations and merriment. If you're looking for a fun craft that is also a sweet treat, I have just the link for you.  This works in a class or at home.

Looking for more treats to make your lessons even more fun?  Take a look at the wonderful materials from the TpT teacher authors. 

Saturday, November 28, 2015

T.G.I.F. at Mrs. Mc's Place -TpT is Having A Sale Linky Party!

Thank you RebeccaB Designs

Come see all the wonderful products the TpT teacher authors have to offer.  You can find all subjects and grades that are up to 28% off!   There are a number of free items tucked in the mix as well. 

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Thanksgiving is next week!  A three day week and then the joy and fun of the holiday.  Here is a link to some clever craft ideas just in case you need one last idea to help you sail through next week.  The picture below is just one example of some really cute and doable ideas.

If you need some lessons, games or activities, look no further.  The teachers at TpT have lots to offer.  Included are materials for the holidays and beyond.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

T.G.I.F. at Mrs. Mc's Place

One of my favorite jobs as the the tech coordinator was to arrange virtual field trips in the lab.  I loved the feeling that I could take a class on a magic carpet ride to a variey of places and times. I've included links in my webquests, when applicable, to give students a chance to see some of the things they are researching.  Here is a link to a list of  ten of the best virtual field trips from eSchool News.  It is defintely worth a look.  

If you're looking for more amazing educational materials, check out the offerings from the magic genies of TpT.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

T.G.I.F. at Mrs. Mc's Place

November is here and Thanksgiving is just around the corner.  If you're looking for some fun arts and crafts ideas for the kiddos, I have just the link for you.

Free kids Crafts

Using the link, jump on and take a look at all of the wonderful ideas. Looking for more materials for your class?  Check out the engaging and creative products from the teacher authors at TpT.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

T.G.I.F. at Mrs. Mc's Place

Hello Thanksgiving!
Here comes November and all the fun trimmings. After a round of parties (or trying to reign in the older kiddos) followed by a Saturday of Halloween hijinks, it's time to kick back and relax.  Take some time to preview all of the assembled products that have been created and classroom tested.  Let the TpT teacher authors help you get ready for a terrific month.  

Thursday, October 22, 2015

T.G.I.F. at Mrs. Mc's Place

Game On!  

When you think about it, we do have to take some of the blame.  We decorate our rooms, plan art activities, and all sorts of other fun things around Halloween.  Then, big surprise!  The kiddos are thinking of the 2 C's, (candy and costumes) instead of the 3 R's.  Here come the TpT teacher authors to the rescue.  Tucked among this weeks helpful, charming, and clever resources are games meant to channel that energy while targeting important skills.  Pull up a seat and enjoy all of the treats we've made for you.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

T.G.I.F. at Mrs. Mc's Place

Fall is gearing up here in New Jersey.  The leaves are really incredible.  There's a lot of outdoor activities planned for the weekend.  From visiting lighthouses to running marathons, (or just watching), you probably have lots to do. The teachers from TpT have some wonderful products to share so you can go ahead and enjoy all the season has to offer.  Get ready to chug that cider and paint those pumpkins and when you need to prepare for class, we've got you covered with all kinds of creative lessons and activities. So, from South Jersey,  Happy Fall, Y'all. 

Thursday, October 1, 2015

T.G.I.F. Linky Party at Mrs. Mc's

A Less Messy Alternative

Need to postpone carving your Halloween pumpkin?  Maybe you're just looking for a less messy alternative?  I came across this wonderful idea on Pinterest and had to follow it down.  Use the link to get step by step directions.  I think this is an idea that could be a lot of fun and be a starting point for some really fun Jack (Jill)-O'-Lanterns.

Friday, September 25, 2015

T.G.I.F. Linky Party Fall Edition

 Who Said Decorated Eggs Are Only For Easter? 

As we start to get closer to October you're starting to think about fun art projects for your students.  How about decorating hard boiled eggs?  If you had to rule out pumpkins for a variety of reasons, this might be the way to go. Some brainstorming with the class and I'm sure you will hear they have plenty of ideas on how to turn their eggs into creepy crawly things.  I've done eggs differently a number of years.  It's easy if you take care of the prep and have the eggs ready.  Some years I've had really helpful generous parents and they have done it all.  I've set them up as one of my centers during my reading time and it's made it a lot of fun for all.  I had a lit ceramic haunted house set up complete with a spooky cemetery. As the students finished they added their eggs to finish the look of the haunted mansion. 

Thursday, September 17, 2015

T.G.I.F. Party at Mrs. Mc's

  Before I retired, when I found myself really slammed with being back to school, I use to think about the Shoemaker's Elves and wish I could borrow them.  Imagine little elves making lunches for the kids, shopping and preparing your meals, doing your lesson plans.  While the authors at Tpt can't answer all of those wishes, we can provide a lot of help in the classroom.  From whole beautifully prepared units to a one page worksheet with just what you need, we can be there toiling for you as you take care of so many other things on your to-do list.  Check out these wonderful resources designed for you.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

T.G.I.F. Party at Mrs. Mc's Place-Time Savers That Make You A Star

The week is almost over and you get to take a well earned break, sort of. I always found it so hard getting back to work in those first few weeks. Maybe it was wearing shoes again and it was definitely hard leaving my kids. With that in mind, I've asked members of TpT to post products that will give you some extra time to spend on yourself or your family. So, kick off the shoes for now, have a cuppa or a glass of, and check out the fun, creative, just plain cool, products that will make you a star in the upcoming school year.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

T.G.I.F. Party at Mrs. Mc's Place

Some of you just returned to school. The good news is you made it through the first week. The bad news is you have to do it again next week! Fear not! Your TpT sellers to the rescue. Here are links to lot of fun creative lessons that will make the start to the school year just a little more fulfilling and maybe even fun for you. If you start next week here's your chance to get ahead of the curve. Whatever the case, just know that you're not alone. We've got your back. What's nice is we're teachers, just like you, and really know what you're going through. Let's all strap on for a great new school year!

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Back to School Blues and Dealing With a Time Burglar

Okay, I'll admit, most of the time burglars we deal with at work don't look like this.  If only they did, it would be easier to recognize them and at least be forewarned.  But they are much more subtle-masked as coworkers, administrators, and, OH NO, IN-SERVICES.  We've all been there-you head for your classroom bristling with efficiency, list in hand and actually excited about all you're going to accomplish.  The bulletin boards you have planned, running off the ice breaker, back-to-school themed materials to prepare, all foremost in your mind.  You get into your drab, predecorated room, already visualizing the marvelous transformation you're planning.  Then, it begins.....the list of what the administration needs and knew that was coming.  But here comes the one I always have trouble figuring how to deal with-the coworker time burglar.  The slow walking, slow talking, keening, apparition, about to steal hours of my time.  It begins with the dragging drawling ..."I can't believe we're back here"...and goes on from there.  All I can think about is how I've paid a sitter, planned dinner ahead, and rushed out leaving my sweet, sweet kids so I could have all of this done and off my plate!  And now......
I must admit I really had trouble solving this until one day I came up with a plan that worked well for me.  I took my mom with me.  Yep, she was totally on board with the whole idea.  It was really win, win.  She was a deterrent to the hand-wringing complainers-they seemed embarrassed to whine and weep in front of her.  She helped immensely and I had two added bonuses.  I had wonderful reminders of her all around the room each day and we had a nice lunch together when the bulk of the effort was complete.  We did this for several years and it was a solution that wound up bringing a lot of joy to my life.
Do you have an idea or solution that has worked well for you.  I'd love to hear.

Here are a few fun back- to- school products that might add to the fun for you.
Banner or Bulletin Board Heading With a Back to School Theme-Galaxy War

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Happy Birthday Lucy!

You have to check out this blog post about Lucy the Elephant.  If you're from NewJersey you will really appreciate this!  Full Disclosure-I'm married to the guy that does this amazing blog.  This one was too special not to link up!

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Summer School Resources

Many school are closed for the summer, or will be very soon.  If you're a teacher looking for some special resources for a summer program check out the following assortment provided by some very talented teachers.  If you're a parent hoping to hold the line on the dreaded summer slide you might find a product that will entertain as well as keep skills sharp.  Happy Summer!

Monday, June 8, 2015

The Promise of a Timer in a Classroom

The thing about a timer is that it defines time exactly.  If you need to know when fifteen minutes is up you just set your trusty timer and in 15 minutes the ring tells you it's time.   I used mine often in the computer lab.  As the students came in they knew to go to the keyboarding program and begin their next lesson.  Once all were seated and their hands were flying across the keyboard, I would set the timer for 10 minutes.  They knew it was an implied promise-if they set right to work and spent the 10 minutes productively it would be over when the buzzer sounded.  We would then move on to the portion of the class they would look forward to doing.  They enjoyed Webquests, lessons in Excel, and learning how to prepare slide shows in Power Point.

Since I taught computers to the whole school, K-8, I found this short but continued method of practice very effective.  I started using it myself during my planning periods.  I always had trouble starting my emergency lesson plans when we returned to school each September.  I started setting my timer for ten minutes-promising myself I could quit when it rang.  Usually after several 10 minute sessions I would have enough completed that I could eliminate the timer.

I have continued to use a timer at home.  I find that I'm more likely to focus and do a chore if I know there is a "promised" end in sight.  I actually set it for 5 minutes and play beat the clock to empty my dishwasher. Think about your students and some of the tasks that a timer might help them complete.  You might be giving them a tool to get them through those pesky jobs that few of us actually enjoy.

Timers come in a variety of fun shapes and characters.  I always had several silly ones in my classroom.  On the very rare occasion I had to give a time out it seemed to make it easier to bear on the part of the child.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

One of my favorite games to play with my Basic Skills classes was "Guess My Number".  I would hand out paper, tell them to number it 1-10 and then we would begin.  With younger students I would tell them to write three blank lines in the first space.  Then I would start to ham it up.  I would tell them I was thinking as hard as I could of a number and we would see if they could read my mind.  After lots of head holding I would start to announce, in a trance-like voice, a number and its position.  For example...a one in the tens place, a three in the ones place, a two in the hundreds.  They would place each number in the blank space. Then I would ask who could guess my number.  Corny, yes.  Effective-always.
I would use this with older students into the billions.  First I would explain that each common represented a word.  Once they understood that they really only needed to say a three-digit number followed by the correct word (comma), they would get into the game as well.  I think I always enjoyed it the most when a student was willing to take over and lead the game.  I felt then I had really reached them.
Here are a few task card collections that I developed to use with my students.

Math Task Cards- Number Detective Grade 2 Freebie

Math Task Cards- Number Detective Grade 2

Math Task Cards- Number Detective Grade 3 Covers 4 CCSS

Math Task Cards- Number Detective Grades 5-6 Decimals to the Hundredths

Monday, April 13, 2015

The Love and Lure of Chocolate.

Most of us love a good taste of chocolate. The sweet taste as you slowly let it melt on your tongue is such a simple but powerful pleasure. One of my favorite memories from teaching is sharing a Hershey Kiss with my second grade class as I would read from the book, The Chocolate Touch, by Patrick Skene Catling.

Later, when I became the computer teacher and was teaching K-8, I missed the closeness of my own class. One day while designing a webquest I came across an amusing website about chocolate. It starts from scratch and takes you through the whole process of producing a chocolate bar. What I found delightful was as you progress your mouse becomes a machete and you harvest the ripe cacao pods. There's more interactive pages and it is very kid friendly. I decided a webquest for my classes would be fun for us all. Check it out and be sure to read the feedback describing some very sweet endings to the lessons.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Spring Smiles

Here are two pictures that will make you smile and want to throw your arms around a lovely spring day.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Spring is Just Around the Corner.

Check out this great idea to get you in the mood for spring!

                                                                        Spring Flowers

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Trivia Crack

It started innocently enough.  An invitation via Facebook to play a game of Trivia Crack.  Now, several weeks later, I'm playing way more than any adult should be playing a game-especially a senior citizen.  It got me to thinking about a possible game that might be played in a classroom setting.  I came up with two games I thought might be fun.  Of course I couldn't use crack in the title-but between us-it was the inspiration for the two I'm showing here.
If you haven't played Trivia Crack, it's a simple and free download from the app store.  If you find you run out of opponents, look for me.  I'm always up for a game! 
Trivia American Revolution
World War 1 Trivia

Monday, February 9, 2015

Ideas For Valentine's Day in the Classroom

Sometimes, despite our best efforts, we wind up with our kiddos excited and ready for their party but no party in sight!  Here is a cute art project and 2 of my products that just might make the wait a little easier and keep the happy in the day-for you as well.  

I checked the site that offered this picture.  While no directions were available, using the picture will lead you.

Here is a game that will actually practice math facts.
Valentine Bingo
Word Bingo

Friday, February 6, 2015

Looking for some fun activities for a center or to go with a project?  Here's a link for you!
There are so many FREE and clever paper models you must take a look at this site.
Go to the "Topics" tab to get a great overview of their selection.