3 million??? That's a big number!  And Teachers pay Teachers is celebrating.  I thought I would join the party too.  My store is 28% off with promo code TPT3.  Don't forget that code!  I have definitely done that in the past.


Here is not only my favorite product, but my top selling one as well!  It is my set of Writing Journal Prompts.




It is a year's worth of writing prompts for your students.  I use them to create morning writing journals for my students.  

The set includes 12 colorful covers, one for each month of the year:


Then there are 12 {undated} calendars full of writing prompts:


Lastly, I've included a variety of writing pages for students, depending on the grade level that you are using them for.


I linked up with The Perks of Teaching Primary to share my best selling item.  Head on over there to find a whole bunch of top selling products to add to your carts!
If you read my blog, you know that I like to be organized.  Like, super organized.   So knowing that I would be out for the end of the year for maternity leave was leaving me in a bit of a panic.  I knew that I wanted all my information to be in one place for my sub, but wasn't quite sure how to put it all together.  Then I came across an Instagram post from First Grader...at Last!  She put together a binder for her sub - genius!

Maternity leave teacher plans are important for your classroom!  Whether you are having a baby girl or baby boy, you’ll want to make sure everything is organized for when you are out.  Here are some great tips for preparing for your absence.
We just had our February vacation, so I thought that would be a good time to get started on it since I would be going out at the end of March.  Change of plans!  This baby girl has other ideas for her mama.  Today is my first day of maternity leave and bed-rest has me on the couch for the next 6 weeks.  So, not only did I start on my binder, but I finished it as well!

Here are some photos...


I tabbed each section, to make it easier for my sub.  Some things that I included are - class lists {I have 4 different groups of students}, seating charts, school schedules {duties, lunches, specials, etc}, calendar of school events, 5th grade curriculum resources and a teaching outline for the end of the year, teaching templates and a "random notes" section.


I put in a calendar for each month for the rest of the year.  This includes as many school events that I was aware of at this time.  I put meetings, assemblies, field trips, days off, etc.  Times and dates change often, though, so I made sure to warn my sub to be flexible!




I also included blank templates of teaching tools that I use in the classroom.  This is my planning page and a blank seating chart.  There is an actual seating chart at the beginning of the binder so that she can easily learn students' names {although she knows most of them already}.


 Since I had to complete it so quickly, it doesn't include quite as much information as I had hoped.  It should be enough to get my sub started though!  Now, I just need to focus on resting as much as possible!

So, I have to say that I was kind of dreading this past week.  It was going to be super busy with late night meetings, retirement parties, physical therapist appointments, field trip, Valentine's Day party, assemblies.  I got tired just thinking about it.  I was looking forward to some great lessons with my students regarding informational writing, however.  My goal was to finish their first informational writing piece before next week's vacation.

Let's just say none of the above happened.  I'll let this week's Five for Friday do the talking.





1. I got to school Tuesday morning and the nurse sent me home with pink eye.  I headed to the doctor for eye drops, but never made it.  Instead I ended up in the hospital with early contractions.  Got to spend a scary 24 hours there.  Once they determined that baby and I were okay, they sent me home with strict instructions of bed rest for the next week and half.


2.  So, I ended up lounging on the couch with this cutie.  I discovered after about an hour that bed rest is super boring.  It is not easy for this girl-on-the-go to just sit.  I guess it's nature's way of just telling me to slow down.  Luckily I only missed 3 days of work, since we had yet another snow day.  Our poor kids had their field trip cancelled for the second time.  We may never make it to the planetarium!


3.  For Valentine's Day weekend, my husband and I were supposed to head North so that he could go skiing.  We decided that was not a good idea.  Instead I crashed at my parents house (we are having our floors refinished), with a stack of books to read and chocolate, of course!  I was super sad that I missed Valentine's Day with my students, though.


4.  I chose to read Wonder first.  Amazing book!!  I couldn't put it down.  Our team decided to use to read it to our classes as part of our narrative/point of view unit.  I can't wait to share it with my kids!  I highly recommend it.  Very well written and a strong message for students.


5.  I'm DONE with snow.  D.O.N.E.  We are in that 6-10 range.  It's our third storm this week.  Luckily I don't have to anywhere, but I'm ready to see the grass again!

See what everyone else was up to this week over at Doodle Bugs Teaching!
Happy Thursday!  It doesn't feel like Thursday since we had another snow day yesterday.   Today's throwback is all about how I ran my Daily 5 rotations in second grade.



Just wanted to share with you a few pictures of our Daily 5 routine (are you sick of hearing me talk about it yet?!).  It's going wonderfully in our classroom so far,  so I just feel the need to brag about it!

First, the students check the chart to see which stations they will be visiting that day.  Learn more about the chart here

The stations include:

Read to Self in the Fun Chairs (bean bag, beach chair, pillow chair, etc.)




Listen to Reading (cd player, ipod, etc)






Read to Self




Read to Someone  


Read to a Teacher (learn more about this game here)




We also do Word Work but I didn't get a picture of that today.  I'll update this post when I do!


Welcome!  Thanks for joining us on the Bright Ideas Blog Hop!  Over 100 bloggers have teamed up together to bring you some of the best and brightest ideas that we use in our very own classrooms!


My idea uses something that is near and dear to all of us...Pinterest!  I use Pinterest all the time to help me develop my lesson plans.  Here are some examples.

The way our curriculum is written is a tad confusing to read.  I re-typed the key concepts into a table, using one page per trimester strand.  Then, I scoured Pinterest for anchor charts, multimedia activities and products that would help bring those strands to life.  I placed the pictures of each idea (I'm a very visual person) into my table so that I would have a quick reference for myself.  I know that each picture that I place in the table is on my Pinterest page, so I can easily access the link if I need it.



I then took it a step farther and have started adding these visuals to my weekly lesson plans.  I use the quick visual to remind me what I am going to be teaching and then hop over to Pinterest to grab the link if I need more info.



Pinterest is such a wonderful tool for educators and it is definitely making my teaching more engaging in fun for my students!

Looking for more Pinterest-ing ideas??  Hop on over to Hello Mrs. Sykes to learn how she uses Pinterest in her classroom!

Hello Mrs. Sykes


Or you can choose one of the topics below that interests you and head on over to that blog.  Have a wonderful Sunday!

Wait...it's February??  How did THAT happen?!  I feel like I was just eating Thanksgiving turkey!  It just means we are moving closer to warmer weather, right?  Since it is February 1st, it's time to link up with Farley for her Currently!




Listening: After a busy week, the silence this early in this morning is beautiful!  I have a feeling that my days of silence are coming to an end however...

Loving: Baby Girl will be making her {hopefully} be making her arrival during the first week of April.  We can't wait!  Her nursery is coming together and I'm looking forward to seeing all my family and friends at my baby shower at the end of the month.

Thinking: I should probably start preparing all my tax info.  This does not sound like fun.

Wanting: I'm having so much fun with my 5th Graders this year and I wish that I could end the year with them!  I only have a couple more weeks before my maternity leave starts.  How much do you think I can squeeze in before then??

Needing: Sleep!  This pregnancy thing is not making sleep easy.  I guess it's just preparing me for motherhood!

2 Truths and a Fib: Did you figure mine out?  

Truth: I don't like to watch TV.  I'll put it on for background noise, but I can't just sit and watch it.  Movies are even worse.  

Truth: I hate vegetables.  All of them.  My mother tries to get me to eat them.  My grandmother tries to get me to eat them.  My husband tries to get me to eat them.  I try to eat them.  I just don't like them.  

Lie: I am definitely a dog person now!  I guess that I never used to be, until I got my little guy.  Now I'm obsessed!  Here's a pic of him during my last snow day:


Go link up with Farley to share your Currently this month!  Happy February!

Before I go, here's a little teaser for you...


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