Friday, March 30, 2012

My Classroom, Onomatopoeia, Flat Stanley, and a Bunch of Random Stuff!

Yesterday was a busy day!  It was the day before SPRING BREAK (so, technically, as I write this...I'M ON VACATION!  HOORAY!)

A little about my classroom...

We have 3 sections of second grade in my school.  I plan writing lessons for our team, Molly plans reading, and Patty plans math.  I cannot tell you how this has transformed the way I teach!  Why work harder when you can work smarter?  I can put much more time and energy into my classroom, learning the new common core, and spend more time with my family each evening and weekend due to the fact that I only have to plan one subject!  We each teach our own classes, but share the planning responsibilities.  This is why you see mostly writing and language arts materials on my page since I spend my time focusing on this area for our second grade team:)  

With that being said...

Here are some pictures of my classroom!


I used my cricut to create signs that say, read, write, think, and explore.

This saying hangs above my door.  Our school mascot is the Panther and we use this saying to support our behavior expectations.

Heart Maps! 

I also used my cricut to create my word wall.  My word wall is beneath my white board.  I want my students to have full access to the word wall.  We add and remove words as needed!

These bookmarks remind my little ones of the various qualities of fluency.  They often use them during Daily 5.

Our contraction poster!

The Mrs. Meurlin's goodies tray was a gift from one of my angels last year.  The mom who made this is super crafty and artsy.  Check out her shop at 

This is my "shopping list."  My students "shop" for books in our 2nd grade library to fill their book boxes with good-fit books.  I made this schedule with days and times, glued it to scrapbook paper, and laminated it. When my students are done shopping, they check off their name.  I can easily see who has shopped for books and who still needs to shop. 


I started a "Word of the Week" activity a few weeks ago.  Last week, our word was "plethora" and I must say, I saw a "plethora" of the word "plethora" pop up in their writing. So cool!

This week my AMAZING teacher partner, Molly, planned for our little second graders to learn about the awesomeness of ONOMATOPOEIA.  To say that my kiddos loved the concept is an understatement.  This display filled up in less than 10 minutes!  Then, throughout the rest of the week, they added more and more examples as they were reading.


We assembled our Flat Stanley envelopes with a letter from the student to the recipient, a recipient letter from me, a journal page, and FLAT STANLEY!  The kids were concerned about Stanley and I heard many comments reassuring Stanley that he will travel safely and be treated kindly upon arrival at his destination.  It was so sweet!  Each of my sweeties folded their Flat Stanley and tucked him in the envelope.  I wish I had taken a picture of the stack of envelopes.  Hopefully I'll remember next time:)

And, in addition to the Flat Stanleys my students sent off in the mail, each of my honeys also took a Flat Stanley Travel Journal and a Flat Stanley with them on Spring Break.  I can't wait pictures of their adventures!  Here is a picture of the journals and Stanleys all ready to go home!

I am heading off to Tennessee on Tuesday next week to visit my brother and sister-in-law.  Flat Stanley is coming along on my trip!  This will be my first solo trip since my daughter was born.  I'm feeling a little nervous leaving her yet I know that my amazing husband will hold down the fort.  She will love visiting with Grandma during the day while Daddy is at work, and I have a feeling that my baby girl will be spoiled while I'm gone:) 

I forget what it's like to just take care of me.  I hope it is as nice as I remember:)  

I'll post pictures of my adventures with Flat Stanley soon!


And, while I'm rambling away, I might as well show you the disaster I created in my classroom yesterday afternoon.  My sweeties have 2 specials back to back in the afternoon on Thursdays (ahhh....quiet time....) so I decided to tackle a project that I've been putting off for 2 years...ORGANIZING MY FILING CABINETS...ugh.  Since moving buildings, switching grades and moving into a new classroom in the fall of 2010, I haven't even wanted to go through the mountain of paper I had stashed away.  (This doesn't include the filing cabinet I have at home with old teacher files, too!)  I had to start somewhere...

I filled 2 and half recycling bins!  Plus, I passed along files to a first grade teacher friend:) 

I was able to create space in the two small filing cabinets to the right of my desk for my listening center materials.  This way they'll be tucked away, yet accessible for my sweeties when they need them.  I never actually sit at my desk, so I'm creating a "reading cave" under my desk, putting the listening center CD player, headphones, books and CDs in the drawers, and turning the actual surface of my desk into a working space for kids who earn a special reward.  How is that for purging and utilizing my space!  More pictures to come;)


WOAH!  I did not plan on writing this much!  Yet, it feels good to share:)  I hope you're having a good day!

Happy Spring Break!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Flat Stanley's Travel Journal!

Our Flat Stanley Travel Journals are complete!  I copied them back to back (you'll have 3 pages in all), then asked the wonderful lady at the copy center to staple them into booklets right down the center.  Each child will have 5 days of journaling and spots for photographs of their adventures with Stanley.  I intentionally left the back blank so students could add another photo, drawing, or journal entry if they desired!  More pictures to come of the kids' finished projects after Spring Break.  (Which is in 5 school days...not that I'm counting!)

Monday, March 19, 2012

Fluency Posters

I just put these up in my classroom last week! They look super cute mounted on bright card stock paper with the edges trimmed to match the decorative edging on the sign.

Click {HERE} to download the signs!

Sunday, March 18, 2012


Oh, and one more thing...if you like what you see on my page, please follow me!  I can't wait to share my upcoming units with you!



Flat Stanley

We are joining the Flat Stanley Project!  For those of you who have not jumped into the world of Flat Stanley, I highly recommend it!  This will be my first year doing it with 2nd graders.  I'm looking forward to diving deeper into the project with an "older" group of students instead of kindergarteners.  I'll keep you posted on all of our adventures!

Click here to download FLAT STANLEY writing paper you can use in your classroom!  I've included both brainstorming paper and final publishing paper.  ENJOY!

The Lorax Writing Paper!

My students are crazy about The Lorax!  We read The Lorax and Human Footprint by Ellen Kirk this week.  Then my students wrote about how they would help our earth.  Use this writing paper and sayings from Dr. Seuss's fantastic book in your classroom!

Click the links below for...

Your students can use these bookmarks to help guide them as they write!
Opinion Writing Guide
Transition Words