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24 February 2013

Fab Giveaway!!

HI There! Teaching and Tapas has a great giveaway going on over at her blog. Click here for more details. The giveaway is running until 3 March so be sure to hurry on over to see all the products you can win and check out all the great blogs as well.

23 February 2013

Study Ladder

Hi everyone,

Maybe most of you know this site - StudyLadder, but on the off chance you don't - I am blogging about it today.

This is a free site that enables teachers to set up individual student accounts and then choose activities that can be tailored to a student's individual needs. The students do not see what each other is working on, only their own activities and how they are progressing. You can search activities by grade as well as by subject. The teacher can track individual progress to see who may need more work on a particular skill or who has quickly mastered the activity and needs to be challenged with a more difficult activity. There are even certificates to print out as students work toward different levels.

I normally add new activities each week, going through the subjects and clicking on activities that I know students need to work on. For my higher level students who need more of a challenge, I may even go to the next grade level.

Look at all the topics you can choose from. It is broken down by Grade level as well.
You can set the tasks individually by student. If a student already knows the information, why have them work on it. Choose something tailored to the individual student.

It is even aligned to Common Core State Standards.

Here you can have a detailed look at who completed what activity and who might need a bit more work. The message bubble on left side of screen is to send an individual message to each student. You can also send a group message to all your students.

The students love, love, love the certificates. I print out and hand out each Monday. We do a little celebration to honor each student.

The type of certificate earned is shown with corresponding points and if already been printed out. Keeps track of previously printed certs for you.

The only downside to Study ladder is with the free version, the students are locked for the day when they reach a maximum number of activities. This has prompted some of my parents to purchase the program so their children can have additional access. However, this is not necessary and does not hinder any possible learning. The students love it and I think you will too. You will need to teach your children how to login with their username and password. For the younger ones, it is a bit tedious at first, but once they have mastered it, they are good to go. I have laminated for each student a card with the website, their username and password on it so they can practice entering the information themselves. Or better yet, set up the website as a QR code and laminate so students click on the QR code with their tablette or IPad and this will take them directly to site. If you haven't already given it a go, check out the StudyLadder website here for more information.

17 February 2013


Hey! Check out the giveaway going on over at Primary Teacherhood . There are 54 awesome people who have donated a myriad of products to this giveaway. In addition, Ashley is offering a choice of 2!!   products from her TPT store to each winner. So, hop on over quickly, before it's all over!! This giveaway will run for one week starting today!! Good luck!!

11 February 2013

QR Codes and a Freebie!

 Hi All! I ignored QR codes for so long as I didn't want to take the time to learn another techie thing. Boy, was I wrong!! These QR codes, which stand for "Quick Response" are sooo fabulous for an engaging activity with your students. They are super easy to make. Click here to take you to a link to create the codes. You can decide to do a code for a website, email, text, etc. Then upload the scanner app to your mobile device, IPad, tablette and voilá!! you have another way to engage your students! Download here for IPhone scanner app.

Here is a link to a post here of some ways teachers are using these QR codes in their classrooms. The possibilities are endless. Think discovery, parents' evenings, treasure hunts, book reviews, math facts, grammar..........

 I leave you with a number sequence activity that has QR codes for self-checking. Click here to get this freebie!


10 February 2013

Creating Preview Pages in Picasa and Collage It!

Do you dread making previews for your TPT items to sell? I know I do and procrastinate until I have no choice if I want to even have a shot at selling my items. Fast forward.... last night I was searching the TPT forums under technology and came across an interesting thread about making previews. Someone suggested using Picasa or Collage IT!  as they both have a feature that once photos are uploaded, hit "create collage" and it will take the pictures you have chosen and put them in a collage. Voilá! It's true!! - So simple! Once your collage is made you can modify and tweak how you would like it to be shown. Then save it to a folder as a JPG and upload to TPT when you are ready. I have to say, I tried both and maybe if I upgraded to a paid account on Collage IT! I would have more options, however I was able to add text to my Picasa collage and move the items around a bit easier. I couldn't seem to add text on Collage IT!. If anyone knows how, drop a comment here. However, which ever you choose, creating previews will be so much easier. I may actually enjoy creating them now!

09 February 2013

Snowman At Night Writing Activity

 I know, everyone has done this activity, but it's just so darn cute, the ideas the children come up with!! I love their creativity and originality. Here's a glimpse of their writings below. I purchased this "Snow Much Fun" Winter Unit from First Grade Fever and I have to say it is a great unit. I have used almost everything in it during my center time. Here is the link to Christie's store if you are interested in this unit.  The art activity came from a pinterest search - here is that link as well.

Working on our torn paper snowmen Art
Torn Paper Snowman Art



Two More Giveaways!!

 There are two great giveaways going on now - one over at Lessons from The Middle  and the other over at The Traveling Classroom - lots of great teacher products to win!!

Hop on over quickly - lots of awesome products to win!!

01 February 2013


Special teacher for Special Kids created a pinning sign up sheet to pin products for Sunday's Sale. Another great exposure for the sale and you can pin items for others as well.

Get link here:

Huge TPT Sale!! 28% off in my store!!

As I am sure most of you know, there is a superbowl sale this sunday on TPT!! I will be offering 20% in addition to the percentage off from TPT which makes a whoppin' 28% off on my products Sunday and Monday Only!! Come on over to my shop and see what I have. Among the best sellers are my Electricity Unit, Light and Shadow Unit, and some differentiated math activities and a differentiated grammar activity. Stop by!!