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Wednesday, December 24, 2014

2015 New Year's Resolutions

It's that time of year!  The time of year when we all sit around the Christmas tree enjoying time with family and reflecting on the year that has just passed.  Man did this year go by fast!   It seems like yesterday I was making resolutions for 2014!!!

Well this year I am linking up with my dear friend Jessica at Second Grade Nest for a 2015 Resolution Link Up!  If you are a blogger be sure to link up!  Here are my resolutions for 2015!!!

Last year was AMAZING professionally!  Mrs. Shipley's Classroom made it's mark on the blogging world although I didn't blog as often as I would like!  Teacher's Pay Teachers allowed my husband and I to leave the not so fabulous jobs we had teaching and move to new teaching positions that we love.  It was a major pay cut but TPT made it possible.  Thank you to all of my amazing friends who buy and use my products in their classrooms.  I hope they made your jobs a little easier!

Professionally I want to continue to grow.  I hit every single goal I set for 2014 professionally but now it's time to think bigger.  I want to step out of my comfort zone and do more conferences and presenting to help spread the Whole Brain Teaching goodness.  I am currently working with a school in Midland, Texas who is transforming to a WBT Campus and there is a major opportunity that has presented itself in the Houston area.  Who knows what God has in store, I just want to be ready when whatever door opens!!!!

I mentioned that I met all my professional goals in 2014.  Well that wouldn't have been possible if I hadn't been tracking them month to month and sometimes weekly!  I created my TPT Entrepreneur Planner last year at Christmas and they were a HUGE hit!  This fact over the next few weeks, I will be updating calendars and adding a few new themes for the 2015 year!  These bad boys are what kept me on track.  Well all but blogging but not for lack of trying!  I had many blog posts scheduled, mapped out, notes down, and just couldn't find the time to sit and write!  But that is going to change.  And best thing yet I have a whole list of blog ideas that didn't get used last year!  Here are last years themes that are being updated with 2015 calendars if you want to grab one!  They are super cute!  

You can even see a product video HERE!  Want one?  Check them out in my store!  Remember they are being updated so you could buy now and print after the holiday when they are updated to new calendars! many hard to narrow it down!  Personally I am not good at time management.  I overload my plate and end up running myself silly until I end up sick and have to take a break!  My personal goal this year is to just CHILL!!!  Relax and know that it will all be ok and if that product I am working on doesn't get finished right this minute it will be ok and I can take time to take care of myself!  I can't remember the last time I got a hair cut.  Gym time?  Yep that is in the cards also!  IT IS TIME TO TAKE CARE OF ME!!!!

Second personal goal?  Spend more time with my family!  I work all the time!  ALL THE TIME!  I am a work-a-holic!!!  There will always be a list of things I want to accomplish and I want to get done but this year it is all about my family!  I work to provide everything they want to do (all the teens and their extra curricular activities)  however, I don't get to spend any time enjoying these things that I am working so hard to provide!  So this year, I will still work just as hard to let them have all their fun but I will take time to enjoy them as well!

I have one goal for this this year!!!  I will visit someplace, any place, outside of Texas with my ENTIRE FAMILY!  Kids and ALL!  My husband and I will also take a vacation together ALONE!  Two vacations...anywhere...outside of Texas!  Let the planning begin...perhaps Scotland?  Who knows!  I loved Germany and Austria just not the company I had to keep while I was there!  So perhaps it is time to make new memories of those places!!!

Um...well...I am a SOUTHERN GIRL!  I don't do fancy foods and all that jazz.  Give me a good 'ole chicken fried steak smothered with gravy and some fried potatoes and greens!  Yep...but if I had to pick something?  Well....I think I would like to try ALLIGATOR!  I heard it was scrumptious!  

I really want to learn how to make pottery!  I would love to take a pottery class but then I don't have time for everything I am already when would I do this! LOL!

Oh this is a big one!  Something to give up?  DR. PEPPER!  Yep I...AM...ADDICTED!  If I would just give them up I would lose like 20 lbs in 3 weeks!  Seriously!  Did it last spring for a biggest loser contest at my school and lost 20 lbs in 3 weeks just from giving up Dr. Pepper!  I have to find an alternative!  Suggestions?

I would love to do more reading!  You know reading for FUN!  My daughter reads a new novel every week!  She can curl herself up in her bed with a cup of tea and a good book and finish it!  Now I realize being a teenager in high school with little to no real responsibilities makes this easy but man I can find time to read one a month can't I?  Any 50 Shades Fans out there?  

I want to start my own school!  I know lofty goals right?  But I think it is in the future for sure!  God continues to open doors that could lead down this path just a few years down the road and the plans and path may start in the year 2015!  So here is to new paths, new adventures, and new doors opening!  All my teacher friends out there...I may be contacting you to come work for me!  You wanna move to Texas right!

Well everyone it has been a fabulous 2014 and I know that God will bless each and everyone of us in 2015!  To Him is the Glory for good times, good friends, and a healthy peaceful life ahead!  Love you all!  Be blessed!  Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

A Little Elf Never Hurt--Holiday Blog Hop

Hey everyone!  I hope your little hop over to my blog has found you some amazing ideas for the Holiday season!  I have teamed up with an amazing group of bloggers Teacher FRIENDS to bring you an idea for the classroom that is sure to ROCK the socks off your kiddos.

If you have been following me for any amount of time then you know that I love ADORE The Elf on the Shelf.  I know there are nah sayers out there that think that parents and teachers like me are just over achievers and have serious therapy issues.  Well...ok they might be right!

Regardless this will be my 4th year doing Elf In the Classroom!  I am super excited about it this year as I will be doing it across 4 grade levels since I teach 2nd-5th grade ELAR.  What does this mean for my planning?  Well next year I am going to have to get really creative and completely change the routine!

This year my team is joining in on the fun and we will be having a SCHOOL ELF!  That's right!  He will be visiting each of the four classrooms (math, science, social studies, ELAR) and being mischievous as ever.

So you may be wondering what all our little elf will be up to this year!  Well there is a whole lot of mischief and fun that is headed our way!  You'll have to check back over the next few weeks to see all his antics.

We started Friday by writing our letters to Santa asking for an elf!  Monday when the students arrived they found their elf, a good morning message, and a letter from Santa!

After a quick read of our letter, we watched An Elf's Story and set to picking a name for our Elf.  Well this is a bit more complicated than first anticipated due to having to have 4 classes that have to come through to SEE the elf and then help vote on a name!  But I am the queen of complicated!  So this morning, Tuesday, we will be coming together and voting as a whole group on the elf name.  

So why do I do this?  Why do I take an already stressful time and add more to my TO DO LIST?  Pure fun!!  That's's fun and it gives the kids a little magic in the classroom!  So maybe your not the most organized and you are afraid you will forget to move him or do something crazy!  Well relax.  If you are not that into it it's OK!  The kids will still have fun!  It's magic, it's fun, and it will help lighten up the mood during that hectic two weeks before break!  There are plenty of things out there to help you on your journey!  Although I haven't created my own little ELF packet for the journey in the classroom, many have!  Next year...Next year...I will HAVE to make my own because my ever trusted resources will have already been used with all four grade levels!  Not a biggie....its all fun and magic.  Here are some amazing pictures from the past that will be taking place over the next few weeks!  Stay tuned for all the details!

Wonder what is up next?  It's all in your imagination!  This has to be my favorite time of year and I encourage you to get on the Elf train! 

Now who doesn't like MAGIC?  Who doesn't like FREE?  Here are some Holiday FREEBIES from my store!  I will leave these free for 7 days!   Consider it a little gift from the North Pole!  I hope you enjoy them as much as my kids do every year!

This unit is meant to help your students move from WOW sentences into a triple part essay! Using winter topics your students will start by labeling winter items with winter words. Next they will build a WOW sentence. Students will next build a triple part topic sentence that will allow them to move into writing a 5 sentence essay.  

This unit is great reviewing and practicing counting coins with a sweet and fun holiday theme. Included in this station activity are the following skills:

Like what you see?  You might enjoy some other Holiday favorites that I have used in my 1st-3rd Grade Classrooms!  They will be 20% off through Sunday!  Perfect for your lesson plans next week!  These are a staple in my classroom every year!  

Thanks for joining us on this Holiday Hop!  Please if you started here, jump on through to our collaborative blog The Elementary Grapevine to start the hop all over!  If you are finishing up!  Enjoy your goodies and have a very MERRY CHRISTMAS and HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Thankfulness, Giveaway and a SALE

So I have seen a few friends posting about all the things we are THANKFUL for this season!  I thought I would join in on the fun and hopefully you will too!

I am definitely THANKFUL for my family!  They love me when I am in a good mood, bad mood, sad mood, etc.  My kids and my husband are my rocks that keep me going!

Speaking of husbands.  Have I mentioned lately how much that man inspires me!  He fights daily against an invisible cancer.  He fights the urge to scream and yell when he is in pain and when no one around him understands what he is going through.  He gets up every morning, pain or not, and goes to his classroom where he puts on a smile and teaches his students.  He gives them a safe place to be brave and try new things and shows them that never giving up is the way to accomplish your dreams. This man has been fighting Leukemia for the past 5 years and he has never given up!  God has carried him every step of the way!!  I am Thankful that God gave him to me to remind me that no matter what is thrown our way, we only know how strong we are when we have no other choice!

I am thankful I am a teacher!  I am thankful for every snotty nose, struggling student, behavior problem, and messy project!  I love each and every one of my students beyond explanation.  Only another teacher would understand.  I am thankful for long nights of planning, weekends off (YEAH RIGHT) and summer vacation (YEAH RIGHT)!!!  I am thankful that I get to leave at 4:00 each day and leave my job at work...YEAH RIGHT!  I am thankful for the amazing paycheck I get every month and the over abundance of supplies I have to do every single project I want to do with my students.  You get the picture!  I am thankful DESPITE all these downfalls.  I am thankful for each hug I get every morning.  I am thankful when a struggling students FINALLY GETS IT!  I am thankful for students who never give up and keep trying no matter how many tears they have shed.  My students inspire me each day!  I am thankful for ALL of them past and present!!!

I hope you join in and share what you are thankful for this season!  Leave your comments below! Now for some FUN!!!

We all know how much we love to shop after stuffing ourselves with turkey!  As teachers we love to SAVE MONEY more than we love to shop!  So why not win some money before you shop!!!

My friends and I over at The Elementary Grapevine are giving our teacher friends just the opportunity to that!  Head on over and check out the giveaway and the amazing Bloggy Friends that I have!  

Don't forget that Teachers Pay Teachers will be having their annual CYBER MONDAY sale this Monday, December 1st through December 2nd.  

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Using Padlet in the Classroom

WOW oh WOW!  My dear friend Debbie from 3rd Grade Pad is blogging today over on our collaborative blog The Elementary Grapevine!  This little APP is going to totally transform my iPads in my classrooms!  You must go check it out!

Just hop on over the The Elementary Grapevine to check out Debbie's advice on using Padlet!