Sunday, January 25, 2015

Dear President...A Letter Writing Unit

Hey everyone!  

When I was little, we had to write to the President.  Boy, was I nervous.  You had to make a good impression, right?  This is the PRESIDENT!!  You had to be able to write a letter discussing important political ideas and theories.  AND you had to have great handwriting. 

Okay...okay... I know I didn't write about political ideas and theories.  I am sure I wrote about my beagle, Murdock, and my little brothers.  And most likely my handwriting was legible.  

(I must take this opportunity to embarrass all of my siblings.  Eldest sibling op!)

But having the opportunity to write to the President is wonderful for teachers and students!!  It's a chance to implement social studies into our writing unit and to practice writing letters.  You probably remember that we wrote to Santa in December.  Let me tell was a great unit. My students did not mind one jolly iota!  

Here is some Trivia Crack for you...

Did you know that an iota is the ninth letter in the Greek alphabet?  I had no idea.  Our ninth letter happens to be the letter i.  You learn something everyday!! 

Note:  Do you all play Trivia Crack??  Oh my word... so fun...even for the not so good trivia players like me it is a great chance to grow a dendrite. Just look up Trivia Crack in the app store.  Possible brain break idea!!!  

So...please forgive me if this post looks a little familiar  :)   Here is the unit that I will be using for our President's Day unit.   

You will find everything that you need in this little unit to write to the President:
There are posters, practice pages, writing organizers, and scaffolding writing papers!  It is a chance to take their writing through the writing process and show them how to write a letter.     

Here is a peak at what is inside...

  • There are pages that you can use to introduce letter writing or anchor charts. We are fortunate enough to have a poster maker at my school.  (However, I love to use them on my Smartboard to introduce lessons, or practice with students.)  
  • You can practice the parts of a letter.   
  • Proof-read children's letters to the President . 
  • You can check for understanding or comprehension of letter writing. 
  • Students can use graphic organizers to help them brainstorm, and plan their letters to the President. 
  • And there are writing papers for different levels of students, whether the level or age!!  Or you can scaffold their letters from the first draft while they are still learning how to write a letter, to their final draft...the one President Obama will be reading!

And of course, there is even a chart to help students learn how to address an envelope and a template to make one.  

Don't forget about the vocabulary words!! Those are available to you, too!  

And because it's only patriotic to put this unit on sale... it's only ONE DOLLAR!!!!
Check it out it will be available for a dollar until January 28th!!!   Now that is something to write to the President about!  

post signature

Friday, January 9, 2015


Hello sweet friends!  

WOWZERS!!!!   I cannot even believe that I have 500 followers on TPT!  What an honor!!  I am so proud to be in your fold of TPT sellers!  I have such happiness in my heart!!   So to celebrate....I am having a giveaway!!! Below you will find some of the sweetest and talented people in the TPT world who have generously donated a credit to their store to my giveaway.  I am honored and thrilled to have such generosity surrounding me!  Thank you all snow much!!!!  :)


I hope YOU win!!  It's going to be soo FUN and I can't wait.  Five winners will be announced January 13th so keep an eye out for the winning list!!  Also, my store will be on sale from January 9th to January 12th.  Everything will be 20 percent off!!  AND, last but not least, watch for flash freebies during those days!!!  

It's time to celebrate!!  

post signature

Just enter below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, January 2, 2015

Happy New Year From the Elementary Entourage! (Get Organized!)

Happy New Year sweet friends!!  I hope your New Year has been absolutely wonderful!!  I know mine has been fantastic.  However, Monday is approaching quickly and I find myself in school mode. My resolutions this year are to get ORGANIZED!  I know if I put my mind to it...I can do it!!  

This particular blog post is perfect for me!!! SOOO I am linking up with The Elementary Entourage!!   Read on about the things I do do in my classroom that work great and the things that I want to do!   

You have to have organization in a classroom or things will be CUH-RAZY, right? Here are two things that I do in the classroom that help me stay sane during the day.  They are very simple but very effective.  They are not mine however, those who created these ideas?????  Ummm...I just want to hug you! Thank you! 

Everyone has a job in my classroom.

This year I have 16 children.  But the number is not important.  What is important is that everyone has a job in our classroom.  Everyone has a purpose. 

Even if I had 30 children (For those of you that do...hugs!  You rock!) I would come up with 30 jobs.  I know that may sound a little much but it is very important especially in the younger grades for everyone to have a job or a reason to be in class everyday. 

Here is my chart.  I promise it is not fancy but it works every year!!!!

(I am so sorry my photo is horrible.) 
Really, I just bought two cheap pocket charts from the Dollar Spot at Target and pinned them together.  The job titles are just cardboard strips painted black, and my name tags are tags I bought five years ago.  

I wouldn't trade it for the world. 
I promise. 

Here are some important information about our jobs:

We only change it on Mondays even if we have a short week.  We never forget...ever.  EVER. Thankfully, all of my little helpers have a great memory!

To change our jobs, everyone moves down a notch.  The student at the very bottom goes right back to the top of the chart.  Sophisticated.  I know.  :)

  Students can be fired and getting fired is very wrong.  It hardly ever happens...why?  Because our jobs are important.

The jobs??? They are real jobs the students perform every day in the classroom and thank goodness...I couldn't do it all without my students and I know you feel the same way.  

Here are our jobs:

Paper Passer
(Passes out all papers.)

Line Leader
(Leads the line.)

(Gets the doors and lights for everyone.)

Paper Collector
(Collects all papers.)

Desk Fairy 
(Gives one of my students a high-five PBIS buck every day to neat seats.)

Calendar Kid
(Asks questions during calendar time, changes numbers, etc.)

Mrs. Grooms' Helper
(Pretty much my right-hand man...but does take attendance reports to the office.)

Office Manager
(Helps with trash control and organizing tables.)

Eyes and Ears
(My tattletale when I have to step into the hallway.)

Recycle Bug 
(Sets recycling out to be collected.)

Pledge Patrol
(Leads the pledge every morning.)

Recess Runner 
(Runs to get kids who are slow to line up.)

Lunch Helper
(Helps the sweeper and table washer at lunch.  Takes lunch count down.)

The Hanitizer
(Squirts hand sanitizer at lunch time.)

Water Kid
(Gives students a water break after recess.)

(Sweeps at lunch)

Table Washer
(Washes tables at lunch.) 

Seriously, I got a new student several weeks ago and what did I do?  
Added another job "The Desk Fairy!"  

Everyone has a purpose.  Everyone has a job. 

This tip is a shorty but an awesome GOODY!!  I know you have seen this pin on Pinterest.  BUT OH MY WORD!!!  Do it!!  It is the best thing I have ever done for orphaned crayons.  And my students??  LOVE IT!!  So whoever came up with this idea???  HUG!!!!  

Students just ummm....quietly walk to the crayon tower and choose the color they need.  They need to return it when they are finished.  If students find a crayon with no owner laying on the floor, they simply put it in the crayon tower.  

Here are a few things that I WANT to do this year....

YES...I want to do this at home and at school.  I need a home for my baggies. I was thinking maybe a Command hook and a hole in the box?  Do you have any suggestions? 

This would keep little hands away from any extension cords especially under our computer counters.

This is just genius. People are SO smart!  I would probably leave a bit of the clip sticking out as a pull tab.  

This would go perfectly with the outlet in a basket picture above! 

Again...people are just so smart!!  

I need one with like 20 boxes.  I wonder if the post office will let me have 20 boxes. 

Remember this?  I did it and it works great!!

Now I want to do this...great idea for scrap paper!!!

So what are some of your organizing ideas?  

Tell us at The Elementary Entourage!!!  



post signature
Get Organized Code:

Thursday, January 1, 2015


It's a new year, sweet friends!!  

Can I say thank goodness?  (I am almost sure I am not supposed to say that but it has been a trying year!!!)   Welcome SWEET 2015!!  I am so glad you are here!  

To start the year off right, I am linking up with Farley from Oh' Boy 4th Grade for her monthly linky party: Currently!  This is my first Currently and I am so excited to be linking up this year!!!  

I hope everyone has a wonderful New Year's Day and I know we are going to have an awesome year!!!  

Much Love!!!!  

post signature