Civics + National Boards

This year is literally zipping by for me. I am in full National Board-mode and have no intention of stopping until my Assessment Center Test is completed!

I am working away on Entry 2--Social Studies and had time to make it into a freebie for you :) 

We started a few weeks ago by talking about:
1. What is a community?
2. What are the three types of communities? How are they alike and different?
3. What is a community helper? How are they important to our community as a system?

And now we are moving on to the civics end of things. We started today with:
1. What is a law? Why are they important?
2. What is pedestrian safety?
3. How are laws created and enforced?

This led us to the three branches of government. This is not a focus skill for 2nd graders, but I felt it was important for me to introduce each "branch" to my kiddos, and they really enjoyed it!

Click the pictures to download your own copy for free :)

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Classroom Volunteer Gifts

I love my classroom volunteers! They support both my students and myself in so many ways every single day! This year I am lucky to have a classroom volunteer every day (parents and grandparents)! I even have 3 Art Docents (also parent volunteers) signed up this year... some classrooms have no volunteers!

I wanted to send a little Thank You Christmas gift to each volunteer. I searched Pinterest :) and this is what I came up with.

That is a bottle of the foamy Bath and Body Works hand soap with a tag that reads:


you are the

Click the picture to download a free copy of the tags!

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It's almost here...Cyber Monday!

So this year I planned on avoiding the Black Friday madness... then many stores decided to open Thursday night (Grey Thursday?) and my husband talked me into going out. What for? The StarWars blue ray box set... yes... we finally found it at the second store we went to, but the line was waaaaaay too long for a one-item purchase!

So we went home (after I rummaged through Bath and Body Works!) and I got online. I was pleasantly surprised at all of the online Black Friday Deals! That got me even more excited for the upcoming TPT cyber Monday deals!

I have been adding items to my cart for over a week! I am so so excited! 

All items in my store with be 28% off--don't forget the Promo Code: CYBER!

Here are some of my most popular winter products!

$2.00 = regular price

$3.00 = regular price

$4.00 = regular price
**I am working on updating this product to include an Array-hunt game 
and more real-life story problems that involve using arrays.

Always free :)

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Columbus Wrap Up

My students and I had a lot of fun learning all about Christopher Columbus this past week.

First, we watched a quick video from Discovery Education that highlighted Columbus and what he is known for. 

Next, because we have been working very hard on complete sentences, after we completed this chart, each student chose one statement to write about Columbus...and I taught them how to draw a ship!

Then, we read a Scholastic Weekly Reader magazine dedicated to Mr. Columbus. Each student in my class has a subscription to the Scholastic Weekly Reader. We LOVE our magazines! They are filled with fun facts, current events, and TONS of non-fiction text features!!!

In our magazine we learned that one of the treasures Columbus took home with him was pineapple! Interesting, right!?  One of my wonderful parent volunteers comes once a month to bake something with the birthday kids for that month so I found a pineapple sponge cake recipe for them to make us!

While the birthday kids are learning about measurement, following directions, and baking safety, the rest of us are reading the recipe and predicting what the final product will look like!

I was a little worried that my 2nd graders wouldn't enjoy pineapple cake, but they LOVED it!!! Well, all but one little guy loved it :)

Next month I will add in a data collection piece and create a graph that shows who loved it and who didn't so much.

I had sooooo many kiddos tell me how excited they were to have the recipe so they could go home and have mom make it :)

Last week was a really great week! I don't think they will ever forget that Columbus treasured pineapple!

This week we are having our Halloween celebration at school and the following week is Fall Conferences. 

Pumpkin carving and pumpkin seed roasting at the Helm house this weekend!

Thanksgiving is just around the corner! What better way to get your kiddos to practice their math facts but to put them on a Thanksgiving Placemat?! Be sure to check out this {FREEBIE} at my store:

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Vowel Posters

Happy Friday! Oh, this weekend couldn't have come soon enough! My husband was out of town for three days this week on a fishing trip for work... why doesn't teaching come with perks like that?! :) Oh right, we get every holiday off... and summer... :) But I still missed him, and it made the week seem so much longer!

Well, all of my reading stations are allllllmost up and running. 

We have been doing RTS, RTSo, LTR, and Work on Writing... we have spent some extra time on these four rotations because that RTSo station is just so hard to keep at a whisper level.  And I am determined to make stations work this year... so I am putting in my time to set expectations!

As I began introducing the Word Work station this week I realized I needed some vowel posters. Most of my 2nd graders know their vowel "lickety-split!" as one of my sweet little girls would say.

But for the few who are still working on this, I felt posters would be helpful.

I couldn't quite find the ones I wanted on TPT, so I created my own!

Click on the pictures or {here} to download your free copy!

What do you think? Helpful?

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Week One: Check!

Well, Week One is officially in the books. And it was a great first week!

I made a promise to myself that this year I would not rush into curriculum, but rather, I would spend more time setting up routines, procedures, expectations, and I would build our classroom community.

We did just that! 

We talked a lot about our school rules (SEARCH Guidelines... we are the Explorers)

Safety for all
Eager to Learn
Accountable for actions
Respectful to all
Cooperative with others
Have a Bully Free School

Mostly we talked about what this looked like when we are in the classroom, hallway, lunch (gym), and at recess.

We talked a lot about my behavior management system. 

I have never had so many students end their day on pink!!! I loved signing the "Outstanding" notes each day, too!

I loved getting to know my students this week. Each day I had a "get to know you" activity planned. 

We talked about our First Day Feelings with the help of Nemo

We shared interesting information about ourselves with M&Ms :) thank you She's Crafty for this great idea!

We practiced being Bucket Fillers! Thank you Alisha {Bubbly Blonde Teacher} for the freebie!!!

My 2nd graders are awesome bucket-fillers so far! They totally get it!! Tomorrow we are making our Bucket-filler book, I can't wait to hear their ideas!

We also made our All About Me pennants :) They turned out great!

Click {here} for the freebie!

Whelp! I am ready for this coming week. Plans are made and I am ready to take on our first full week!

But I'm not going to lie... I am ready for next weekend, too :) 

I love having so much time with my husband... love it!

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And the winner is...

Thank you to everyone who entered this super fun giveaway! I wish all of you could win. But there can only be one, so congratulations to....

Rafflecopter randomly chooses one person from all of the entries. It looks like Emmalee was entry #155 and chose the option to "Follow my blog".

Congratulations!! I have your email address (blacked out above for privacy). I will send it to Katie at Wise Decor and she will be contacting you soon!

Let me know which Wall Word you choose! :) 

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