Sunday, January 13, 2013

Birthday Compliments

Birthday Compliments

On the first day of school , I have each child choose a precut face. They add yarn,eyes, and color to make it their face. Then I put them in a file until their birthday. On their birthday, each child in the class comes up with a compliment about the birthday boy or girl. At the beginning of the year, I usually get that they are nice or cool or kind. As we go we through the year, they get better at using adjectives to describe the person It's a great way to get them to start using $1.00 words !!!


Liebster Award

Liebster Award

Wowie ! Wow ! Wow! as Junie B would say. Katie over at A Basket Full of Apples  nominated me for a Liebster Award for bloggers who have less than 200 followers. That definitely is me. I started this blog this summer when I had lots of time. I haven't done much with it since school started. As all of you know there is no time once things get going at school. I even feel badly about not responding to this award right away. So this is my New Year's Resolution to blog twice a week. I am so in awe of all the blogs that I read that I really don't know what else there is to say or make or do but I'm gonna try.

The Liebster Blog Award is given to up and coming bloggers by established bloggers ( less than 200 followers), in order to recognize them , let them know they are appreciated, and to spread the word about new blogs.

The rules are:
  • You must post 11 random things about yourself 
1. For those of you who  are old enough to know what  the show Romper Room was in the 60's. I was on  Romper Room for 2 weeks when I was 5 years old.

2. I have lived all over the country, North Carolina, Utah, Idaho, Nevada, Arizona, Missouri and Ohio. My husband works for the United States Forest Service and we have moved a lot!

3. In Arizona , we lived at the Grand Canyon (South Rim) for 14 years. I taught at Grand Canyon school, which is one of the only two K-12 schools in a National Park. The other one is in Yosemite.
I love that three of my children graduated on the rim of the canyon.

4. I have 4 children. Three girls and a boy. My youngest is a Junior at Arizona State University.

                                             Go Devils!!!!
5.I taught on the Duck Valley Indian Reservation in Owyhee, Nevada. I taught Shoshone and Paiute students.

6. My house was destroyed by a tornado when I was 11. I slept through the WHOLE thing. Thank God, my room was the only one still intact.

7. I love the water. I grew up on Lake Erie and being on the water (lake or ocean) is in my blood.
So........ I kayak now every chance I get.

8. I met my husband in college. He was from New York and I from Arizona. He took my to Long Island for Christmas the first year we met.  We have been together for 35 years.

9. I hate, hate, hate snakes!!! Scared to death of them.

10. I love shoes and scarves!!!

11. I am not the most organized person with my stuff.

  • Answer the questions that the nominators set for you.

                                      Questions, Questions, Questions

1. What is your favorite place to travel?

Anywhere ! I love to go ! My husband and I are planning a trip to Ireland, Scotland and England this summer. That sounds pretty great to me!! Last summer we went to Boston and Cape Cod. I loved Boston ,too! See, I just like to go.

2. What is your favorite thing to do when you are not in school?

I am always too busy to read a lot so in the summer , I read a ton of books.

3. What is your favorite blog to follow?
I have several- I love First Grade Wow,  First Grade Parade, and Erica Bohrer's First Grade

4. What is your favorite thing to do with your class?

I love small group in reading. I love to discuss books with my students.

5. What is your favorite Christmas song?

The First Noel

6. What is your advice for a new teacher?

Be yourself, seek advice from other teachers that have taught for years, be creative, always keep learning and love your students.

7. What is your favorite site to get cute clipart from?

Scrappin Doodles

8. What is your favorite children's book?

The Giving Tree

9. What is your favorite grown up-book?

"The Secret Life of Bees" and as a young girl I loved "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn"

10. What is your favorite food treat?


11.What is your best accomplishment?
My children. They are all awesome, responsible and creative people.
  • Choose 11 blogs you love (with less than 200 followers) and link them in your post.

                                                 Great Blogs
                            Check them out !!
                              The Teacher Garden
                                             Only in First Grade 
                                    The Fairy Tale of a First Grade Teacher
                                            My First Grade Backpack
                                            Learning Ahoy
                                            First in Maine
                                            First Grade Honey Bunch
                                            Frolicking into First
                                            Mrs. Meyer's First Grade
                                            Mrs. Morales 2nd Grade
                                            The Teaching Bug  
  • You cannot "tag back" the other blog but leave me a comment on this post with the URL of your Liebster post so I can learn more about you and see who you nominate.  

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Whew- my classroom is done and ready for that first day back. I really like some changes that I made this year. I have been doing a camping theme the last 4 years. I really like it because it fits in with our study of animals and habitats that we start at the beginning of the year. I have seen so many other classroom blogs with camping themes this year. I want to incorporate a lot of the ideas I've seen. This whole blogging thing is great - getting to share ideas!!!

My hallway display.
 I love how it turned out this year and I plan on using it as a photo backdrop for my students pictures.
My reading corner
My kiddos absolutely love to read in the tent. I choose two students each day for partner reading.

My Cafe wall.
 I saw that someone on Pinterest had turned cafe to face so I thought I would take their pictures and use them for students to put them on the skill they were working on.

My Daily Five Wall
I will add anchor charts  and photos for each component as we talk about them . There are graphs to keep track of their daily progress on their stamina.

My Retelling Corner
I have a little puppet stage where students take turns retelling their storie using props.

Students have big books that they read and then practice retelling at the puppet stage area.
This is my corner and reading table.

Monday, September 3, 2012

I was putting together my classroom for the year.  I thought I would share my discipline board. Each one of my students has a pair of blue jeans with their name on it. Every day they have had excellent behavior ( at our school we still pull cards ),  they get a pin (stud) in their jeans. When they have five, they are allowed to go to the prize box. Then we start again. They really love it !!! If I forget to do this, my name is "mud".

Friday, August 31, 2012

This summer I was cleaning my craft/sewing room and found a project I had started last year for my first grade kiddos so ..........................I got crackin' and got them finished for this year. I feel so accomplished. They are called Schultuete cones.  In Germany, they are given to children at the beginning of the school year filled with trinkets and candy. This might become a new tradition of mine because you could change the material and fabric to suit your theme.
I just took a piece of card stock and cut it into a cone shape. Then folded it together and glued it with my hot glue gun. I had some foam sticky letters that I stuck on the side. Then I went into my material scraps and cut out 4 " pieces and glued them on the inside of the cone, filled them with candy, special erasers, playdoh and fancy pencils and tied them with ribbon. I put them on the kiddos desks on the first day of school. They loved them!!!!  You could do this at Christmas time too!!

Friday, June 15, 2012


                                                         Daily Cafe- Vocabulary

I have a Word Jar in my classroom to help my kiddos new vocab and to learn the meanings of new words. When I am teaching the Daily Cafe and we are going over the vocabulary part of the menu, I read them "Donovan's Word Jar" It's about a little boy that collects words and by a happy accident the senior citizens at his grandmothers nursing home get into and steal the words because they need that word.

This year I had the high kiddos for reading and I had some awesome word collectors. They would bring in words every day for the jar. I had one little guy who brought in hypoallergenic, psycho and
elegant in one day!!  That was a good discussion.  We went over the meanings of the words each day and then we put them into our jar.  

This summer I found three new books on being a word collector. Love, love, love that two out of the three characters are boys.

Can hardly wait to read these and develop new lessons around them !!!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Why this name for a blog?

This is my very first post on my very first blog. SO.............excited to get started. I have been truly inspired by so many teachers this year reading their blogs.  So I wanted to join in the fun.The wealth of creativitiy and the things you are all doing in your classroom makes me truly proud of the teaching profession. I'm hoping I have a few things that I can share too.

MOOSE TRACKS??????   Why this name for a blog??????

My hubbie works for the U.S. Forest Service and part of his job is to fight forest fires. He usually gets called out to a fire out west somewhere every year. If he ends up in Colorado or Montana, I know that I am going to end up with a gift that has something to do with a moose. He is in love with moose stuff.
Moose Drool Beer

Moose Brown Ale BBQ Sauce

Picture Frames
Moose Socks

Moose Yard Art

And several pairs of moose pajamas!!!! ( which I didn't want to model).My own children have joined in the fun so we are also getting moose ornaments for Christmas.  So a couple of years ago I started a camping theme at the beginning of the year in my classroom and since our students travel to different rooms for reading my room became the moose room. My reading kiddos loved being the called the " MOOSE" kids. They also learned quickly that moose is singular and plural.


I teach my students that when we read, problem solve and write we leave tracks of our thinking. This blog is my way of leaving tracks of my thinking. What's happening every day in my life, what's happening in class and seeing that progrss that is made throughout the year with my kiddos. Also, when you follow train tracks you start at one place and get to another. By beginning this blog , it will hopefully take me on a new journey to create a little more, reflect a little more and learn a little more. ( especially this computer technology part)