Thursday, March 27, 2014

Spring Cleaning....Without the Bleach!

It's that time of year when you get the urge to clean out the old to welcome in the new!
This weekend the urge may be in the form of your TPT Wish List!
I know my list is brimming with products I have yet to purchase...and I have linked up with 100s of other bloggers and TPT authors for a....


So what does a Spring Cleaning (TPT style) involve?

1. Head to your 'My Purchases' and see if you have any purchases you have yet to leave feedback for.  Did you know you are missing out on credits- which can be applied to future sales?! I love that each time I leave feedback I am helping myself get a free product real soon- not to mention helping the seller's store and item shine!

2. Go into your wishlist...begin prioritizing!  Is there something you could really use to round out the school year?  Is there something that is a MUST have for a particular student/group of students to help them reach grade level expectations?  Is there something in there that is fun, new and exciting that you can't wait to try?  Keep those..and possibly even add them to your cart!
BUT...for the others that you really don't see a need- or could do without this year, remove them- its kind of like the sweater with the tags that you have yet to wear- if you didn't wear it by now, chances are you're not going to- and there's no reason to have to combat clutter come the summer!

3. Pop into some of your favorite sellers stores.  Did they post something new?  Are they having a sale?  If so, add it to your cart (you review your cart before check-out, so no worries!)

4. Review your wishlist and cart. Click 'redeem TPT credits' and use as many as you have!  And then proceed to checkout!

5. And don't forget to leave feedback for your new purchases!

Once your wishlist is all cleaned, you will be left with a sense of accomplishment...and if the closets don't get done this weekend, no worries...they will always be waiting for you- but this sale is only until 3/31!

My entire TPT store will be 15% off from March 28th-March 31st!
Click HERE to find my most recent uploads!

Below is the list of all the fabulous sellers that have linked up and are holding a Spring Cleaning Sale this weekend!
Happy Cleaning!

Until next post,
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'Spring Has Sprung And Games Are Fun' Blog Hop!

Spring Has FINALLY Sprung....
And after this winter, that is SURELY something to celebrate!
So, 20 of my blogging friends and I have teamed up to bring you...
From March 28th to March 31st you will hop from blog to blog to learn about a fun game, grab a freebie and have the opportunity to enter a Rafflecopter to win the blogger's choice of a prize!

My students are working on subtraction and we have played several 'games' in our classroom to practice and 'use' subtraction!
There was:


 'Roll, Say, Flip & Reveal' addition and subtraction fun!

And some partner zoo animal fun for writing subtraction 'sentences' in different ways!

But my class loves to move and groove!
So this week we went bowling...and turned it into a subtraction lesson!
My sons had an adorable bowling set from Melissa & Doug that I snuck into school!

The pins were set and it was time to play!
I had my guided reading table whiteboard down on the floor so that we could record as we played!
The set came with 6 pins so we started with 6.
The first player knocked down 2 pins, leaving 4 standing, so we wrote out the sentence 6-2=4
SO, the next person up started with 4.  S/he knocked down 2 pins leaving us with 2, so our number sentence now said 4-2=2

Would we get those last 2 down.... 
YES!!!
So 2-2=0

Each time we got to 0, we'd set the pins back up and begin recording our number sentences...
 and the game continued until everyone had had a turn!

But the pins only let me play with a maximum of 6, so that night I went home and made a set of pins so that we start with 10!

I had bought an adorable set of farm clips from Educlips that were screaming to be used, plus, we will be starting a farm unit real soon!
At first I had them stand by just folding over the edge...
 But then thought that maybe if I wrapped them around a toilet paper holder they would look and act more like bowling pins!

So I tried both ways out before the kids came in!



 And I definitely liked the way the toilet paper holder set worked better, so that was the one to use!

So when math time came rolling around, we set up the farm pins and gave them a try!




As you can see we did the same- recording how many we started with, how many got knocked down and how many remained standing.  And continued to do so until we had 0 pins standing!

Next week in math centers they will have their own set to use!
This is a mini version of the ones above!  I simply chose '2 to a page' from my print menu and it automatically shrunk the images to 50% the size!  I laminated and taped them to paper cups and game it a try... 


They do 'roll' a bit more than the toilet paper holder ones and take a bit more 'oomph' to knock over, but I think they are going to be so excited to play it won't really matter!

They will have the option to record on either the dry erase recording sheet (left) or b&w printable (right)!

Would you like to try out barnyard bowling?
If so, lucky you, because that is the game freebie I am offering for the blog hop!
Head on over to my TPT store to download the pack for free!
Feedback is greatly appreciated!
This item will only be free for the hop, and will go back to a paid item on Tuesday April 1st!

But that is not the end of the fun!
My kinders will continue farm fun and subtraction with this brand new farm file folder game I made!

Similar to my Zookeepers Beware of Missing Monkeys file folder game, this one has the option of using the spinners and/or using the simple word problem cards!  You get 2 weeks worth of centers (1 week spinners, 1 week cards) out of one game!


Enter the rafflecopter below to win this file folder game for free!
But that is not it!
The winner can also choose one other game from my TPT store (up to $5) for free!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Ready to find your next game and freebie?
It comes to you from Lindsey Levis of Lovin' Kindergarten With Mrs. Lindsey!
Lovin Kindergarten

Thanks for hopping along and 'hoppy' spring!
Until next post,
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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

'Playing' With Our Learning!

Sometimes the best ideas I have for teaching come from watching my sons play!
I have 2 boys that are 'true boys'- my house is filled with cars, trucks, dinosaurs, superheroes, etc!  When I sit back and watch them play I learn from them...I learn how they learn, I learn how they problem solve and I even feel like I learn how to be a better teacher!

So this subtraction idea came straight from watching my boys play!

They raided my empty cardboard box container stash (I am gearing up to make decomposing monsters!) and started cutting them apart.  They are very creative and can make the most amazing things from unstructured play!  They have open access to scissors, markers, crayons, glue etc.  So they often go about making things.  I had no idea what they were up to- except for the fact that they were making a huge mess!  And then I sat back and listened....

'Park it right here.'  'Oh no, there's an emergency so the ambulance has to leave.'  'Now I only have 3 emergency vehicles in my parking lot.'  'The emergency is over- the ambulance is back now.' 
And so it continued...and I chimed in...

'How many cars are in your parking lot?'  'If the firetruck goes to the fire, how many will be left?'  And they 'acted out' the scenarios I said by having their cars/trucks move in and out of the lot....

GENIUS boys!  You are practicing addition and subtraction...and you have no idea!

So when they went in for naps, I went to the computer and made a parking lot, some simple word problems, and paper cars (I didn't think they would let me 'borrow' their cars for school math!)

My class is 'boy' heavy this year- 13 to 7- so I knew if I had the cars they would be even more excited!
So I grabbed a baby wipe container and took about 40 cars from the bottom of the toy box that I didn't think they would miss- I had to hide them- and the container worked like a charm!

I laid down the law...the cars are used to answer the math problems- if I find you are just 'playing' with them, I will have to take them and give you the paper ones instead!

And so our fun and learning began...
Pull a word problem card and 'read' it.  Put that many cars in the lot.

Read the card to see how many cars drive out...and have them drive out!

Count how many cars are left in the lot.

Record your learning...Write how many you started with...

...how many drove away... 

...and how many are left!  And then read your number sentence!

They continued to pull cards, 'act' them out and record!









No one has had to use the 'dreaded' paper cars...yet!

This week we worked only with the subtraction word problems, but there is also an addition set in there.  Next week addition and subtraction cards will be mixed and they will need to figure out if the cars are pulling out (subtraction) or driving into (addition) the lot!



Find all you need to 'play and learn' addition and subtraction here:
All you'll need is some cars...or use the paper cars!

Another fun way we worked with subtraction and simple word problems this week was our file folder game 'Zookeepers Beware Of...Missing Monkeys!'

Last week we used the spinner component to spin a subtraction problem.  This week we used the subtraction word problem cards!

Students selected a card and put that many monkeys in the cage.

They then read the card to see how many monkeys to make 'escape' (leave) the cage.
and write the numbers on the number sentence strip. 

They count up how many monkeys are left...

And write the answer!

They continued to play until our math center time was up!
Looking to play this fun game in your classroom?  You can find it here:

I am linking up with Teaching Momster for this week's Wednesday Math Madness Linky all about Subtraction!  Click here to find more subtraction ideas!


Leave me a blog post comment about how you teach subtraction for a chance to win your choice of my parking lot or monkey subtraction centers!

And be sure to visit again this weekend!  I am part of a blog hop that is full of fun game ideas, freebies and giveaways!  I have a subtraction farm freebie that is sure to have your kids up and moving!

Until next post,
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