My Truth Monday- 12 Part Series (a tad late :)

So as you can see, I'm a tad bit late joining the party!! :) I blame my 2 week fall break! Nonetheless, I couldn't miss this!! Denise from Sunny Days in Second Grade has organized a 12 part series to called My Truth Monday to help make the blogging world a little smaller and more connected. :) Every Monday, she will post a new truth on a specific topic. You can use the image to write your truth on the topic and link up to her post! It's as simple as that! I'm so excited to get to know more of you better with this weekly link up!! So here goes the first part to My Truth Monday!!
Part 1: My Truth about Fitness
This is kind of all over the place, but fitness is something that I NEED in my life! My whole body slows down when I haven't worked out in a while along with not eating the best either. I know, for me, that I am at my best when I'm in shape. I have more energy, and I'm just happier and more positive. I feel good about myself, and I don't gravitate toward my bigger shirts to wear. As hard as it can be to just get going, I know that if I do, I will feel so much better! I put things into clearer perspective. I push my body to places I never thought possible which translates into work and other areas of my life. If I can feel the rewards of that extra push, it only motivates me to keep pushing!!! :) The hardest part is starting! Making a habit takes 21 days so try it!! You will see transformations in all areas of your life! 

Thanks so much for stopping by!!! I'm so excited to be joining Denise through this great 12 part series! Can't wait to get to know all of you better! Click not he button below to check out more My Truth Monday posts!!!  

Friday Fall FREEBIE Blog Hop: Final Round!!!

Hi everybody!! :) I can't believe it, but this is the last Friday Fall Freebie!!! It's crazy to think Nov. 1 is next Friday! I just love everything about the fall so I want to take it all in as much as I can! The past 2 weeks, I have been on fall break! I went to see my nephews out west which was awesome!! I was introduced my nephew's kindergarten class as a "good aunt" which made me smile!! :) It's going to be a rude awakening Monday morning, but luckily, there are tons to look forward to in the next weeks!
On to the FREEBIE! I want to give another great, big THANK YOU to Crystal and Marie at Once Upon A Classroom: Two Teacher Perspectives for getting this all together for everyone!! The FREEBIES have been AMAZING!! Thanks also to all of YOU for stopping by our blog hop!! We're so happy you have joined us for the past month or if you just started today, welcome! :)

My FREEBIE today is on finding sums of 10. It's called "Go Turkey Trotting to Sums of 10." It is a game played like "Go Fish" except you start with 2 cards in your hands. You can print the number cards with the title cards back to back, or if you want to save on ink (black and white looks fine too), you could just use the number sides. There are directions with the set for the kids as well. Instead of saying "Go Fish," they say "Go Turkey Trotting!" This is a very quick game with a half sheet exit type slip that they will have to complete also. I have included one half sheet set (2 half sheets to 1 page) to use with a timer to write down how long it took them to finish. The other half sheet set is simply completing it and using the answer key to check how many they got right. Click here to download this FREEBIE, or click on the title page below to download it. 

 I hope you and your students enjoy this quick paced game!! Thanks again for stopping by the blog hop!!! Make sure to FOLLOW ME to continue along with me on my journey! Also, I would love to hear what you think of the FREEBIE and of the blog hop! What was one of your favorite freebies? 

Your next stop on the blog hop is with Mrs. Rossi at Sailing into 2nd!! Click on her blog button to grab your next FREEBIE!!!

Friday Fall FREEBIE Blog Hop: Round 3!!

Hey there!!! Welcome back for the Friday Fall FREEBIE Blog Hop: Round 3!!!  Thanks to Crystal and Marie at Once Upon A Classroom: Two Teacher Perspectives for getting this all together for everyone!! Now on to the FREEBIES!!! 
Before I share my freebie :), I just have to tell you how EXCITED I am right now!!! In less than 10 hours, my sister and I will be on a flight to Denver which then we will drive 3 1/2 hours to Wyoming to see our 2 nephews (and of course my brother and sister-in-law)!!! It's a trip just to get there from the airport, but it is so worth it to give a big hug to both of those boys!!! What's even better??? My brother is a principal and my sister-in-law is a 2nd grade teacher like me so they have school...which could only mean...AUNTIE time!!!! It is going to be the 2 aunts and the 2 nephews for a couple days next week!! I love my brother and sister-in-law, but you all know what I mean when I say it's even more special when you get to share time with just them! Thank goodness we have a 2 week fall break!!!!!! :)

OK, now I will get back to the FREEBIE!!! This is one I actually created last year, but I just recently was talking about it with other teachers as we were talking about teaching character traits. This freebie is called Cooking Up Character Traits
The idea behind this freebie was actually inspired by a character traits unit on Read Works website! If you have never used this website, you need to check it out!!! It is FILLED with step by step lesson plans for all the different reading comprehension strategies and has great choices for texts to use or passages that they have created. There are lots and lots of nonfiction passages too!! 
So once I got the idea to make it into actual recipe cards, I emailed to make sure it was okay to post as a freebie. They were so kind and quick to respond with a yes, of course. They were happy that I was able to use their idea for inspiration. So I quickly finished it up and shared it with everyone. 
When we teach about character traits, we often talk about the actions, thoughts, and feelings that the characters show in the book. So we talked about a recipe and how we have to put all the ingredients together to come up with the end result. Well, it's the same with character traits. You have to take all the bits and pieces you find about the characters and put them together. For example, one action of the wolf's in Little Red Riding Hood is that he dressed up as her granny. The kids would write that in one of the ACTION boxes. Then they would think about what he was thinking as he did that action. So they would put something like he was trying to play a trick on her. Finally, they would write how they thought he felt as he was doing this. They would put something like sneaky or clever. After closely looking at each part that made up the character, we come up with the trait that they mostly portray. They write the character trait on the lines as well as using that evidence they wrote down in the organizer to back up their statement. Of course, they also draw a picture of the character in the box just like the food would be on the recipe card. 

I used our poster maker at school to enlarge these to a huge size which the kids loved. We also used them after that as normal organizers. They really started to get a good understanding of what they had to find or pay attention to in the books to be able to describe the characters traits of a specific character. Many times, they do notice these things, but they don't connect it to character traits. 

Click here or on the Character Traits Bulletin Board Title to download this FREEBIE!!

set on TpT that includes the Anchor Poster I use when teaching character traits as well as the Cooking Up Character Traits freebie. I use the example from Little Red Riding Hood on it. :) Here's a look at it!
Well, I have to get myself to bed so I can wake up at about 4am to get ready for WYOMING!!!! :) I hope you and your students enjoy this freebie!!! Feel free to leave a comment below and/or on TPT to share how you like it or whatever you'd like! :) It makes my day to hear from all of you!!

Thanks for stopping by my little blog!!! Don't forget to FOLLOW me here or on Bloglovin to stay in touch!! :) I hope you have a FANTASTIC FRIDAY and a relaxing weekend!! 

Your next stop on the blog hop is with Mrs. Rossi at Sailing into 2nd!! Click on her blog button to grab your next FREEBIE!!!

Friday Fall FREEBIE Blog Hop: Round 2!!!

Welcome back to the Friday Fall FREEBIE blog hop!! Thanks to Crystal and Marie at Once Upon A Classroom: Two Teacher Perspectives for getting this all together for everyone!! Now on to the FREEBIES!!! 
This week I have created a Contractions SCOOT!!! (Spider Themed) I made this spider themed so you could also use it at different times throughout the year! Whether you are doing a unit on spiders, creepy crawlers, Halloween, fall, etc., this game will help your students practice identifying and writing contractions. There are 14 different contractions used with each having one card to write the 2 words that make the contraction and one to write the contraction from the 2 words. There are 28 SCOOT cards total with a recording sheet and answer key!! Click here or on the pictures to download your FREEBIE now!! :)
Thank you so much for stopping by my blog!!! Don't forget to follow me here or on Bloglovin and let me know what you think in the comments here!! I hope you and your students enjoy the SCOOT game! :)

Next up is... 
(click on the blog button below to take you to your next stop)

MYSTERY WEEK!!! A Classroom Mystery

Hi everyone!!! Welcome to Mystery Week!!! Well, it was actually last week, but we had to solve the mystery before I could blog about it! ;) So a little over a year ago, I was perusing through Pinterest and various websites and came across the idea of having a mystery in the classroom. I have no idea where I saw it so I apologize for not being able to give that person credit for the idea. After learning about it, I ran with it!! I use Mystery Week as a means to introduce the Fiction genre of Mystery as well as introducing problem/solution and reinforcing making inferences and drawing conclusions. Making the mystery a hands on, personal and interactive activity really draws the kids in and allows them to embrace and internalize their learning.

Preparation: First, I decided which classroom treasure I want to be taken from the room. Then, I talked to one of our ISTEP Remediators whom I KNEW would really eat this up to see if she would be culprit! She then left 4 clues for me to leave in the area where our Minion stayed along with a written clue. I took those items and scattered them around the "Crime Scene." I tape off the area with "No Paparazzi" tape (left over from when I used a Hollywood theme in my class hah). You can definitely use different type of tape or plain yellow or bright tape of some sort. I just wanted to use what I had.
Prep. cont.: Then I get all of my materials together. 

- latex gloves for investigating (My head cafeteria worker gives some to me each year!)
- magnifying glasses (these aren't necessary but add to the fun and intrigue :)
- my Mystery Genre Poster from my Genre Posters Set and Drawing Conclusions Poster from my Reading Skills Posters and much more set! (Click on the posters below to see the whole sets in my TPT store. It comes with matching book bin labels as well. :)
- my Follow the Clues!!! An Introduction to Mysteries activity set (Click on the cover below to see the activity in my TPT store. :)
Day 1: The Discovery of the Crime Scene!
On Day 1, the students came in to find a taped off area and had to figure out what was missing in the scene. I do the formal activities during our reading rotations, but we also talk about it throughout the day! THEY LOVE TO TALK ABOUT IT!!! :) I mean want to interrupt you in the middle of math to say they have another suspect!! So on this day, we talked about our "Minuend" Minion (totally named the minion after the largest number in a subtraction problem so they would remember it!! hah :) missing from our classroom!!! We talk about what we think happened which leads into the introduction of what a mystery is. I use the poster above as well as examples from the classroom library that they are familiar with.  Cam Jansen is a great one even if they haven't read any, most of them have heard of the books. We then fill in our MISSING flier/poster to hang up in the hallways!!
Day 2: The Investigation!!
Now it's time to get our hands dirty!! I have the kids put on latex gloves and get out their magnifying glasses to investigate the crime scene. As they investigate or after, they wrote down the clues and what they may tell us (inferences)!! This is AWESOME practice making inferences! You can easily spot the kids who have a good handle on this! I have to throw a shout out to Jen Jones and her Picture of the Day year long set for helping us to make good inferences with pictures. This has helped us in the classroom in so many ways than just this Mystery Week! Click on the cover below to see the activity in her TPT store! It's worth it! :)
Here are some pictures of the kids investigating the crime scene!!! They were SOOOO excited!!! I wish I would have videotaped the conversations!! They would talk about who they think did it, but then another would disagree and say why! It gave me chills! :)

Day 3: The Suspects and Interrogation Questions!
Now that they have investigated the crime scene, they start to make inferences to come up with possible suspects using the clues that they found. We made a list together which they also wrote down on their organizers. There is a place for notes to add anything that is important to remember about them, like that they come to our rooms every Thursday, etc. 

Once we come up with a suspect list, we decided on what questions we should use in our interrogations. We make sure to think of the clues and what questions would get us the answers we need to see if that suspect did it using the clues that were left. I then email the suspects an email as from the kids! They send me a time that would work for them during our reading time the next day. 

Day 4: The Interrogations!!!
This was such a great day!!! Not only did the kids have to come up with questions that would lead to specific answers, they had to take the answers they were given and draw conclusions about the suspects! One of the kids started hysterically laughing after the first question was answered! He was soooo excited!! I just couldn't help buy smile and feel so proud of them! They were really a part of their classroom mystery!! So each rotation we tried to go to as many of the suspects as we could. I had it set that the actual culprit came after our reading period so since all 3 groups had her as one of their suspects, we all interrogated her!! It worked out perfectly! They were on to her from the beginning, but I may have helped deter their attention to others to keep the mystery going! :)

(Scrappy Hearts Clipart by The 3AM Teacher!)
We didn't have to interrogate all of our suspects which we talked about this happening prior. Once our ISTEP Remediator (the culprit) came in, we interrogated her! The reactions of the kids were priceless! The gasping was loud! :) Once they drew the conclusion it was her, we flipped over the written clues (which she did awesome and made a puzzle out of it to explain WHERE Minion was located). This then told us where our Minuend Minion was!
 We then went to Room 104 to find our Minion. The kids were on the hunt! Our Remediator had snuck out of the room to "flee" from the scene! We walked down to find her reading a story to Minuend Minion. :)

*There is a WANTED poster included which we did last year, but this year since she was in our room, we didn't need to put up the posters to find her! :)

Day 5: The Problem/Solution Responses
This day the kids fill out the graphic organizer showing the problem and solution boxes. We usually also do a drawing conclusions quiz of some. 

Writing Extension: As a way to extend the activity to writing, the kids write about the week Minuend Minion was missing! :) This is also included in the set! 

There it is!! Our Mystery Week!!! It's such a fun way to introduce and reinforce so many skills in a way that the kids will remember!! Several of my kids from last year came down to my room after they saw our Missing Posters in the hallways! They immediately accused my EL co-teacher since she was the culprit last year! :) One of those kids even asked if I was going to do the mystery at the beginning of the year! Interactive and personal activities really make an impact on our students!!! :)

Here is a link to another inferring activity that really was liked by my students! Grab it for free here or click on the picture below!
I hope you enjoyed the mystery...Minuend Minion is MISSING!!! The Mystery of the Disappearance of Minuend Minion, the Class Minion!  Thanks so much for stopping by!!