Monday, April 28, 2014

Make Your Desks & Tables Dry-Erase....For Free!!!

How awesome would it be to have these in your classrooms???

Whiteboard tables!!!!
I think pretty awesome!! I have been wanting a horseshoe whiteboard table for my small group ever since I saw one last year being used on "The Teaching Channel."

But, they run around $300. Yikes!!!

So I looked into the possibility of painting my horseshoe table using whiteboard paint.

But while you can purchase it for under $30, the reviews on the quality and issues applying the product are horrible!!!

So, I wasn't so sure I was ready to tackle this project!!! Not to mention, take the chance of ruining a school table and having to get prior approval!!!

And then I got to thinking! Dry erase marker will erase off of just about any laminated surface!


And it just so happens that I had dry-erase desks and tables the whole time, and didn't even realize it!!!

Gotta love that backwards 9!! :)

But hey, she got it right and they are all so engaged in math now!! Every day now when they come to small group, they ask, "Can we write on the tables again today?" And of course I say, "Of course." 

Whatever it takes to get them engaged in learning! 

And btw, it erases just as clean as your whiteboard, if not a little better actually! We all know that certain colors don't even erase nicely on our traditional whiteboards. 

And any smears left are gotten at the end of the day by our classroom table washer! 

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Saturday, April 26, 2014

Five for Friday, Freebie, & A Giveaway You Don't Want to Miss!

I made it through my first week back from spring break! That is always a rough week as my kids are always so needy and starving for my attention! I am not kidding when I say I heard my name called, "Mrs. Bender," at least 55 times within the first hour on Monday! But while it can be hectic at one point, it is so loved! I love that my students missed me and are so happy to see me! It truly melts my heart!

My hubby and I had a super great time on our spring break! It was very relaxing! We stayed 3 days at Pirate Cove Resort in Park Moabi, California.

Our Cabin was VERY nice and right on the Colorado River!!!

I got to spend some time with this precious little guy! Meet my
2-month old nephew, Ben! He was born on my wedding anniversary! :)

My high functioning group tested out these 5 new prefix centers I made during my spring break! My students are truly my best editors! They always catch any mistakes I may have made! This set is not available in my store yet as I'm adding more to it, but will be available next week!

We found this little baby bird in my yard Wednesday night after a huge wind storm blew a nest out of one of our trees! We also found 5 cracked eggs. Poor little baby! Just broke my heart! He was so scared! He is gone now, so hopefully mommy came for him!

We did some really cute Earth Day activities this week that included making hats and lapbooks! I wish I could show them all, but there's always so much going on in my multi-leveled diverse classroom that it's hard to always take photos!

But I was able to capture our Earth Day cupcakes!!

The picture really doesn't do them justice!! They turned out spectacular!!! And tasted yummy too!

Freebie Fridays

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

There's an amazing teacher appreciation giveaway going on over at "Tator Tots & Jello." $1,000 in Michael's gift cards!!! 
You can enter {here}

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Monday, April 14, 2014

Great App Finds, Freebie, & A Sale

Well it's GREAT FINDS SUNDAY on Monday!!!!! Better late than never right, and it has been more than never lately!! 

Is anyone else on spring break this week?!!!!

This week I have some great technology and app finds for you, as well as a $100 giveaway!

My first great find is an app called "Apps Gone Free."

This is what the app icon looks like and the app is free

 "Apps Gone Free" posts normally paid apps every day that have GONE FREE! Some of them only free for that day! I've seen apps as high as $19.99 go free for the day and have gotten several apps for myself ranging from 99 cents to $4.99 for free! I have gotten a couple of cheezy ones in the process, but who cares....they're free, so just delete them!!!

My next great find....also to do with finding Grace's website at Grace is dedicated to finding the best and cheapest educational apps out there for families and their children. Every day she posts free and discounted apps for children.
 Click on her button above to view the free and discounted apps you can snag up today!!!!

Grace is also having a giveaway right now for your choice of a $100 gift card to Amazon or the iTunes store!

You can enter {here}.

Book Creator is also another great app find I've been playing around with, where you can create your own ibooks. I learned of it at a ULS staff training last week, but I want to play around with it a little more before sharing too much about this app. In the meantime, check it out for yourself. 


If you didn't grab my Easter freebie that was featured on Educents, it is now available in my TpT store!!

I'm also having a spring break sale!

Everything in my store is 15% off for 3 days!!!

Start shopping {here}.

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Saturday, April 12, 2014

Five for Friday With 3 Science Experiments & A Freebie!

It's official!!!! I'm on spring break and I'm starting my first day out with my first ever link up with "Doodle Bugs Teaching" for her "Five for Friday" linky party! I've always wanted to join this fun party, but I don't usually blog on Fridays because it's my shopping night! I always do my grocery shopping on Friday nights after school, so that I can enjoy my Saturdays and Sundays. It really makes for a much longer weekend! Although it's much dreaded every Friday, it feels so good to get up every Saturday morning knowing it's DONE!!

So here's my Five for Friday on Saturday!!!
 Do you have trouble managing ipads and what apps students go on in your classroom? I did and it was driving me crazy! So in an attempt to solve this problem, I organized all of the apps on all the ipads into categories, took screen shots of each and made this schedule chart. We started it on Monday and it worked great! Now when students go to the ipad center, they check to see what category their group has been assigned and then they can choose any app from that category! If students are caught out of that category, the ipad is taken and they have to go do seatwork. That generally only happens once! 
In a previous post {here} I wrote about "guided access" and how you can use it to lock a student within an app, but it can often be challenging for me to free myself from my other groups to place every student into guided access.
Our favorite part of the day......Science Time!!!
Students got to see how the molecules of the water adhere to the piece of string without spilling!!

We made homemade playdough....and then......

 ..........used it to see our pulse!!!

This is a very cool experiment! When placed correctly over the pulse, the toothpicks rapidly vibrates and moves!

We studied ants all week, but had to say goodbye to our ants and set them free before leaving yesterday as we are on Spring Break now! Woohoo!

I just love this photo!

A closer look!

 The kids loved making ants on a log!!!

And to end the day before break yesterday....we colored Easter eggs! I am convinced that some of my students have never colored Easter eggs, so I am very happy I was able to provide them with this memorable childhood experience!

And I'd like to leave you with a couple of freebies from my "All About Ants" unit. 

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

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