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February 8, 2024

2024 Big Game and Taylor Swift Ideas for the Classroom

Are your students talking about the Big Game? Football has a different level of appeal now that Taylor Swift plans to attend!

Here are 5 ideas to integrate a Big Game/Taylor Swift theme into your lessons:

1. Creative Writing

Have students write a story where they get to attend the Big Game. Provide time for students to share their stories.

2. Character Education

Set up a station where students can make friendship bracelets for others. Students can use inspirational and good sportsmanship words. 

3. Biographies

This station will include books about football players and musicians. Check your school library and the children's section at your local library for books. Thrift shops are another option! Here are a few you may consider:

Who Was Peyton Manning? by Kirsten Anderson

Who Is Tom Brady? by James Buckley Jr.

Who Is Taylor Swift? by Kirsten Anderson

Who Was Louis Armstrong? by Yona Zeldis McDonough

Who Were the Beatles? by Geoff Edgers

Students can complete a mini biography book report after they read.

4. Cultural Connections

Students research Tokyo and complete a mini-report.

5. Puzzles

Students can complete word searches and other puzzles relating to Taylor Swift and football. For an extra challenge, provide blank grid paper for students to create their own.

6. Math Word Problems

Students can practice various math skills by completing math problems related to the singer and the big game! A scoot setup would work perfectly! Place one task card on each desk. Play some Taylor Swift music as students roam about the room. When the music stops, students go to a desk and complete the problem on the card. Go over the answers. 

Save time and grab a Taylor Swift + Big Game lesson set here:

With faith and friendship,

January 5, 2024

National 4th Graders Day - 4 More Ideas!

4th Grade is worth celebrating!

Here are 4 more ideas to celebrate National 4th Graders Day!

1. Have a 4 of Everything Day.

Use the number 4 all day long. Here are some ideas to get you started:

Participate in 4 Brain Breaks

Complete 4 Math Problems

Tell 4 Jokes

Complete 4 Exercises

Show 4 Acts of Kindness

Eat 4 Cookies

Read 4 Short Stories

Write 4 Sentences

Draw 4 Pictures

Sing 4 Songs

Locate 4 Countries

Complete a 4-Step Science Experiment

2. Make a craft activity.

This disco ball 4th Grade Era resource is print and go!

3. Play Connect 4.

4. Play 4 Corners!

Need an educational 4 Corners game?

Try this popular one:

4th Grade Rocks!

Click HERE for more National 4th Graders Day ideas!


December 26, 2023

Teacher Travel: How I Learned to Fly Free!

Are you a teacher looking to travel while stretching your dollars this summer? Do you know it's possible to fly without paying for a single ticket? From points to free companion passes, there are many ways to save money and take advantage of great deals while traveling.

At Families Fly Free, you'll learn different ways to get free flights, travel discounts, and much, much more! Lyn and her team work with you to make your travel dreams come true, and your investment is guaranteed. Make traveling a reality for your family today!

Click For More Information! (This is an affiliate link which means that if you sign up, I receive a commission at no extra cost to you.)

December 1, 2023

7 Easy Ways For Teachers To Save Money - Maximize Your Resources

As the cost of living increases, it can be challenging to find ways to save money. You may find a few ideas here you haven't tried yet!

1. Save on Groceries.

Look in your fridge and cabinets for items before shopping. There's less to buy (and put away!) when you use what you already have.

Make meals that result in leftovers such as spaghetti and meatballs, beef stew, and casseroles.

Buy generic. Nearly everything I buy is generic. That is, except the cereal that tasted like cardboard. 

Take advantage of sales and digital coupons. Check your grocery apps for coupons regularly. 

Order online. My local store provides a free shopping service for orders over $35. I find that I spend less if I order online because I know exactly how much to spend, and I'm less likely to throw a family-size bag of Hershey Kisses in my cart!

Use cash-back apps such as Ibotta. (Referal link which means I'll receive a small commission at no extra cost to you!) I earn about $100 each year from this app without much effort. Right now you can get an extra $5 just for signing up and giving it a try! 

Ibotta Sign Up

2. Play at Home.

Instead of buying tickets to the next event, dust off those toys and games. It's a great way to save on entertainment.

3. Get Cash Back When You Shop.

Buy nothing weeks are great, but eventually you will need to buy something. Use a cash-back app such as Rakuten (formerly Ebates) when you shop. This link is an affiliate link as well. I average about $100 back each year on this site.

Try stacking discounts when you need to shop. For example, if I'm purchasing a gift from Pandora, I will use Rakuten (for cash back), the Southwest shopping portal (for travel points), and a credit card that offers cash back or travel points. My favorite travel points credit card is Chase Saphire Preferred. The points transfer to Southwest and before you know it, you can fly free! Referral links:

Chase Saphire Preferred

Rakuten Sign Up

4. Ask for Discounts.

Ask for Teacher Discounts, AAA Card Members Discounts, Senior Discounts, Military Discounts, or whatever may apply to you discount! Ask even if you don't think a discount is offered. While eating at Planet Hollywood recently, I asked about a AAA discount. Our server asked and said, "We don't offer a AAA discount, but the manager is giving you a 20% discount anyway." It doesn't hurt to ask! Try restaurants, craft stores, clothing stores, entertainment venues, etc. 

Ask for a discount if an item you purchase goes on sale shortly after you purchase it. My daughter bought a jacket on Stitch Fix. It went on sale for 25% off. She sent an email politely asking for a price adjustment, and they gave to her right away.

Speaking of Stich Fix...I've got a referral link for that one too! At this time we will both get a $25 credit if you sign up! Sign Up for Stitch Fix I love Stitch Fix for the convenience of home shopping, quick shipping, easy returns, customer service, and styling! I've opened up my mind to different styles and color combinations. Freestyle is my favorite way to shop, but I've tried a couple of style boxes as well. It's so much fun to see what your stylist picks out for you and returns are a snap. Try Stich Fix

5. Be Strategic with Take-Out. 

Take-out can get expensive, but it sure is a nice treat once in a while! Try taking advantage of special promotions from local restaurants, making your order last for 2 days, and even ordering from the children's menu. 

6. Cut Cable.

Save money by streaming if you aren't already! 

7. Ask for Free Parts.

This is a new discovery for me. We have a leaky faucet and Delta is sending out free replacement parts. Although this repair will require a plumber, we will save money by providing the parts from the company. The faucet is over 10 years old btw! 

These ideas can help you stretch your dollars! Challenge yourself to save money right now!

November 5, 2023

Following Directions Fun

 Following directions takes practice!

Here are a few ideas to consider...

1. Blindfolded Buddies

Hide sets of objects around the room (such as a stack of plastic cups, a container of dice, etc.) Students get paired up. One wears a blindfold while the other gives directions to find the objects. Once found, the pair waits at a designated spot in the room for classmates to finish. Students return the objects and switch places.

2. Coloring Craziness

Purchase identical dollar store coloring books for students or use free coloring pages. Give students directions to color certain parts of a picture with a specific color such as, "Color 3 of the dogs green. Color 2 of the dogs blue." Once students get going, give silly directions such as, "Draw wings on 1 of the blue dogs."

3. Fun With Food

Use snack foods such as goldfish crackers and pretzel sticks. Have students follow your directions to arrange the snacks on a paper plate. You can add math concepts such as patterns, even/odd numbers, fractions, etc. to your directions.

4. Scavenger Hunt

Use small treats and party favor prizes. Break students into small groups and give them written clues and directions to find the prizes. Sometimes the clues lead to more clues and sometimes they lead to a prize.

5. Play Games

Vintage games such as Simon Says and Red Light Green Light are good for following directions and require no prep.

For an easy printable game, try this student favorite: 

Following directions just may improve with plenty of practice!

Click the star to follow my TpT store! 

October 3, 2023

13 Group Halloween Costumes for Teachers

Halloween is a fun time of year when people of all ages can dress up and get into the spirit of the holiday. For teachers, Halloween can be a great opportunity to bond with colleagues and create a fun atmosphere in the classroom. If you're looking for group costume ideas for you and your teacher friends, here are 13 ideas to get you started...

1.  The Wizard of Oz: 

Dorothy, The Tin Man, Scarecrow, Cowardly Lion, Wicked Witch of the West, Glinda the Good Witch, Toto

2. Superheroes: 

Wonder Woman, Superman, Batman, Spiderman, Captain America

3. Harry Potter: 

Harry, Ron, Hermione, Dumbledore, Hagrid, Draco, Moaning Myrtle, Snape, Bellatrix

4. Alice in Wonderland: 

Alice, Mad Hatter, Queen of Hearts, Cheshire Cat, White Rabbit

5. Flintstones: 

Fred, Barney, Wilma, Betty, Pebbles, Bam Bam

6. Addams Family: 

Morticia, Gomez, Uncle Fester, Wednesday, Pugsley

7. Scooby-Doo Gang: 

Scooby, Shaggy, Daphne, Fred, Velma

8. Muppets: 

Kermit, Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, Animal, Gonzo

9. Dominoes: 

Black Sweats with Dots

10. Dunkin' Donuts: 

Basketball jerseys, shorts, socks, headbands + donut innertubes

11. Bucket Fillers: 

Round bins, shirts with shapes, sparkly headbands

12. Emojis: 

Yellow shirts with different expressions

13. Play-Doh Containers: 

Yellow shirts, lids for hats

No matter which group costume you choose, you're sure to have a great time with your fellow teachers.

Happy Halloween!

Click: October Lesson Plan Ideas

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September 17, 2023

Talk Like a Pirate Day

Ahoy Matey! Let's add some pirate themed fun to your lesson plans on Talk Like a Pirate Day!

1.  Have small groups write skits using kid-friendly pirate phrases.

Take the opportunity to compare and contrast formal and informal language. Sort your crew into small groups and let the writing begin. Be sure to allow time for performances!

2. Read a pirate themed book.

So many choices! Students love the Magic Treehouse series so try Pirates Past Noon by Mary Pope Osborne or choose a pirate book from your local library.

3. Make a pirate themed craft.

Talk Like a Pirate Day is the perfect opportunity to meet up with a younger buddy class for some crafting fun!

4. Play Sink or Swim with spelling words.

Divide students into 2 teams and have them line up on opposite sides of the room. Starting with the first student on one team, give a spelling word. If the student spells it correctly, they get to sink a classmate of their choice on the opposite team. That student sits down. If the student spells the word incorrectly, then they are sunk! Next, play goes to the first student on the opposite team. Now if this student spells the word correctly, they can either sink a person on the opposite team or save someone on their own team. If they save, that student resumes play with their team at the end of the line. Continue until all members of one team are sunk!

5. Create an X Marks the Spot Math Activity.

Hide math problems around the school. Provide a map for students to find the problems. Pay out chocolate coins for correct answers!

6.  Write letters in a Bottle.

Students pretend to be shipwrecked and write a letter in a bottle. Have students switch bottles and write back.

Save time with 5 and 6:

Have fun Me Hearties!

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