Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Halloween Literacy Fun

I LOVE Halloween time! There are so many wonderful, descriptive words that go with Halloween which leads to many literacy activities. 
 If you have a class that you have to differentiate work for, these FREE alphabetical order pages will be perfect.
They look similar, and have most of the words the same. The difference is in the number of words on the page. If you have students who work a little slower, or who do not do so well with a large number of choices -- give them the page with only 10 words on it. If students love a challenge or work quickly -- give them the page with 15 words on it.
If you want to turn these into a literacy center that can be reused, time and time again, pop them into page protectors and have students write on them with dry erase markers. If you provide the answer keys, students can mark their own pages! 


Friday, 11 August 2017

Stop Buying Tissue Paper Flowers!

I beg you to STOP buying those tissue paper flowers. Yes, you can buy them everywhere and they are convenient to throw in your shopping cart, but please, please, PLEASE stop. They are super easy and cheap to make. I am going to show you how you can make your own and in any colors/patterns you like.

Supplies Needed: 
  • scissors
  • string (I use the embroidery thread for friendship bracelets but any string will do. Use fishing line or clear thread if you are hanging them) 
  • tissue paper in any color/patterns you want
  • push pins (for mounting on wall)

 Step By Step Instructions:

1.) Select your tissue paper. The bigger you want your flowers the more sheets you will need. To create the blue flower above I used six sheets. For larger flowers I use 12-16. I would never use less than 6 sheets but you can play around with it. If you are hanging the flowers and want petal all around in a ball, you will need more sheets. 

2.) Lay your paper on the table. If you are making smaller flowers, cut the tissue paper in half (Yay you get 2 flowers out of each package!!!). Arrange the paper so that it is vertical in front of you (hot dog not hamburger shaped... lol)

3.)  Start folding your tissue paper back and forth like an acordian fan. The fold should be no bigger than 2 inches. There is no harm if the folds are bigger you will just get less petals. 

4.) Once you have completely folded you paper, tie your sting in the middle of the strip. If you are hanging you flower you will need to leave a longer string hanging. It is also important that the knot on the string be on the edge side of the strip (see the picture).

5.) Cut through all of the tissue paper ends in any shape (curved, pointed, etc) you like. This will form the petal design. Here is a link showing a variety of petal shapes. 

6.) Now for the most delicate step. Starting at one end of your strip, fan out your accordion fold. Starting with the top piece of tissue paper CAREFULLY separate it from all the others, pushing it in towards the middle where your string is. Go sheet by sheet until you are finished that side. Once done flip it around and do the same to the other side. Once all your sheets are separated you can start playing around with it to fluff it up. 

If you are going to put the flowers on a bulletin board or wall, like in the picture here, leave one side of the flower flat and push all the petals forward. To attach them to a flat surface, I found push pins work way better than staples. Staples tend to flatten too many of the petals and will tear them when you take the flower down.
 If you are going to hang your flowers, make sure you spread the petals on all sides of the flower to make a flower ball. Once it is hung you can play around with the exact placement of the petals.
 These are so simple to make that I have done these with students in Grades 2-7. Everyone loves making them and they were ALL successful.

Layer colors or use patterned tissue paper for more unique flowers.

The main thing is to have fun, be creative, and SAVE money!!!! I can buy a package of tissue paper (12 sheets) for $1 and make 4 flowers out of it. If I luck out and get the 30 sheet packs for $1 during seasonal times, I can make way more (this isn't a math post so I won't figure it out...lol) I know I will NEVER buy pre-made flowers again, and neither should you. 


Friday, 7 July 2017

Free Calendar for the Upcoming School Year

It has been WAY too long since I posted last. I will be teaching at a new school next year that will be way less stressful and time consuming and one of the things that I am going to make a priority is my blog. I feel I have been neglecting it for the past few years being at a school that consumed all my time. I am excited for my future possibilities! 

With that said I thought my first 'Back At It" post would include a freebie for those of you who have stuck with me. One thing I have learned over the past few years is that I need to be organized to stay some what sane. My calendars (yes I use a few different ones)have been my work saver. I would have been lost without them. 

Here is a FREE one for you all to enjoy. It covers August 2017-July 2018. All you have to do is click on the picture to get your copy :)

If you are looking for something more detailed and versatile I have a fancier teacher calendar for you.  

The bright colors of this are sure to brighten up your work day. Each month opens on two pages in order to have bigger boxes for writing in, as well as a small notes section on each month. There is also a page for monthly goals and one to record birthdays. Add your name to the front cover to personalize and add text boxes to the calendar to input any important dates you would like.

Each month has a teacher quote to help inspire you along the way!
There is a "Notes" page that can be printed as many times as you like.

This calendar is very versatile and can be coil bound or printed and put in a binder. The calendar covers August 2017 to August 2018.

If you live in Canada, I have the same thing but in a version just for you! All the Canadian holidays are on this calendar!

 The best thing about all of these calendars is I will update them EVERY year. So once you get the first copy you will have FREE updates year after year!!!!

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