Holiday Fun!

Dear Friends,
Just wanted to pop in and say hello! I also wanted to wish you all a happy holiday season and a Happy New Year filled with lots of love, happiness, and most of all health! I hope you are all enjoying some very well deserved time off and cherishing every moment spent with family and friends! I know I sure am! I'm also enjoying some baking, scrap booking, shopping, and RELAXING. Of course, I am working on some winter units and thinking about what I will be doing with the kiddies when we return in 2013 too! Hopefully, I will have some new packs and crafts up soon! Here are some photos of what I've been up to these last few days :):) yumm!

Ms. Nicole

Christmas Fun!

Hi Everyone, 
We had the most exciting week! We are all full of Christmas spirit!
First, we began our week with some bad news, Santa is on strike this year!
Well, I'll tell ya, my kiddies sure had fun with this idea and created some very nice stories about how Santa was fed up, tired, and (let's not forget) all the cookies were making him sick! 

The kiddies wrote some amazing stories about Santa on Vacation!

Oh my goodness, these are just too delicious! I love them! Santa taking sun, Santa drinking lemonade, Santa surfing! These kids are amazing!

You can check out this item at my TpT Store

Today, we had just as much fun learning all about Santa's reindeers. I told the kiddies that I was sent a mysterious package from the North Pole and inside there were profile cards for all the reindeers. We read all about them and placed them on the board in order from least to greatest (based on the reindeer ages!! Hehe!). My kiddies were so amazed and excited!!! 

Then, we wrote up a profile for a new reindeer. 

Finally, the kiddies made their own! Too cute, I tell you!

You can find these little reindeers at my TpT store as well!
Just click HERE!

Be sure to check out my friend Valerie's Giveaway for the Holiday! You have the chance to win these two items along with the ones below and many more!

Here are the two other items I have donated to this fabulous giveaway!

You can check out the Elves Pajama Party HERE and 
Santa's Favorite Cookie HERE

Finally, all these wonderful items are available in a bundle right over HERE!

Happy Holidays!


A Giveaway for the Holiday!

Hi Everyone, 
I'm back a second time this week to tell you all about an amazing giveaway that I am taking part in! My very good friend Valerie, over at All Students Can Shine, has put together a 12-12-12 themed Giveaway (us teachers sure do love our themes)! 

To enter simply click on the link below and read all about what you can win and how!

The Giveaway also includes another great friend of mine! Leslie, over at First Grade Frenzy!

Check it out and good luck!
Twelve lucky winners will win twelve great activities!


From ME to WE

Good Morning my Dear Cyber Friends, 
It has been some time since I last wrote to you and I apologize for this! Each time I think things might slow down a little, they just get crazier! I'm sure I am not the only person who is feeling this way, especially during this time of year! The time of year is precisely the reason why I am posting about an important subject today. It is dear to my heart and I hope you can take the time to read this post fully. As we all know, this is the time for giving and thinking of others. Some of my students, colleagues, and I have really taken into account the fact that many are not as fortunate as us and I would like to share with you a very important initiative that we are proud to be a part of. 

It all started when a few sixth grade students, a very special colleague and I went to WEDAY, this past November. For those of you who are unfamiliar with this initiative, it is concert of sorts that brings together motivational speakers, performers, and most importantly youth. Craig and Marc Kielburger have made it their mission to help the less fortunate, and most importantly educate youth about poverty and what they can do to help make changes in the world. These passionate men have an incredible story that stems from when Craig was only twelve years old. Now, seventeen years later, Free the Children is making great strides in helping children all around the world. It has become an international charity and involves over 1.7 million youth! 

There is nothing more powerful than young students who demonstrate passion and dedication towards a project, and this organization is well worth the hard work. In order to empower students, Free the Children has designated a day to celebrate children and their involvement in charitable work. WEDAY is a spectacular event that takes place in many cities and inspires youth and adults alike to make a difference and help those in need. I can attest to the fact that this day has ignited a fire within me, my colleague and the seven wonderful young ladies who have made it their goal to help others. I am so proud of their devotion and passion for this great cause and am astounded with what they have achieved in so little time. I can only imagine what they will be able to do in just a few years time. 

I would like to share some of the more memorable moments of WEDAY with you, in hopes of sparking some interest and passion of your own. 

The symbol for Free the Children is From ME to WE. If we turn the M in the word me upside down we create the word WE.

The founder and cofounder of the organization. Craig and Marc Kielburger. Their passion is compelling and infectious.

Spencer West, a motivational speaker who lost his legs. He climbed Kilimanjaro and talks of 
"Possible Redefined"

Lieutenant-General Roméo Antonius Dallaire who told the students that they are the generation without borders. He told them to buy a pair of boots and go to far away impoverished lands, to feel, smell, and understand the hardships others endure. He said to come back and put those boots under the bed and to never forget what was experienced and who they have become because of it. 

Liz Murray, who went from being homeless to Harvard and talked about how people in her community gathered together to help her. She spoke of one woman who couldn't afford to give her food or money and thus insisted upon doing her laundry. She said that this woman stated that 
"Although not everyone can do anything, everyone can do something" 

Molly Burke, a young woman who spoke profoundly about her struggles with bullying. She was left alone in a forest with a broken ankle. She is a blind woman who made it through this difficult experience and has made it her mission to give a voice to those who do not have one. 

These are only few of the very influential speakers who presented at WEDAY. My students were extremely moved by their stories and have been changed ever since.

I urge you to watch this video and click on the Free the Children link below in order to see how you can get involved with this organization.  Read their story and see how you can help. There are so many ways to create change and you wouldn't believe how simple and reasonable it is to make a huge impact on someone's life. It is absolutely incredible!

The first initiative my students took on was the penny drive. 
It is called the WE CREATE CHANGE campaign and 25$ worth of pennies will ensure that someone receives clean water for the rest of their life. 

My students have also decided to make hand made Holiday Cards and sell them. All proceeds will go to Free the Children. Have I mentioned how proud I am of these wonderful young ladies!

I must say, they have quite a knack for this and are making some beautiful cards. 

In the spirit of giving, I hope you take the time to visit the FREE THE CHILDREN website and perhaps even make a small donation to help change a life. You may also want to see how your students and school can get involved with this wonderful organization.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. I truly appreciate it!
Happy Holidays to you all!

Ms. Nicole


Sale, Sale, Sale! And some New UNITS!!

Happy Sunday Everyone, 
I have been missing in action for some time. It has been hectic, but things are finally starting to slow down. Just wanted to stop by and talk about my excitement over the fast approaching Holiday Season and of course to let you all know that I will be taking part in the TpT sale on
 Monday and Tuesday.  

Here are just SOME of the units I have been working tirelessly on in the last few weeks. These will all be included in the sale along with the rest of my store!

Students will create a recipe for Santa's favorite cookie
Students will write about mischievous elves who are having a pajama party 
Students will create a profile for a new reindeer in town
Santa is on strike! Students will write about Santa on vacation
You can also get all four of these activities in my Bundle Pack!

Happy Shopping!
Ms. Nicole


A Healthy School is a Happy School!

Hello Everyone,
Yesterday, our school had an awesome time promoting physical activity. I am a part of the Healthy School Committee and took part in a great initiative to encourage students to stay active during recess and playtime. We have many students who enjoy playing sports such as, soccer and basketball, however many of our students wander around the yard with "nothing to do." We mostly wanted to cater to these students but also show our athletes that they can play other games at recess too. 

We have many games that are painted on the playground, however students are not familiar with the rules and procedures. Many of these games are childhood favorites of mine and my colleagues. Do four corners, hopscotch, and elastics ring a bell?!?! Well, you wouldn't believe it, but most of the kiddies have no idea how to play these wonderful games! Enter the Healthy School team and we've now got many students who are great fans of these simple and fun games. 

The students took part in a sportsmanship assembly and we're introduced to The Team. We explained that we would be wearing funny hats outside and would be teaching new games. We then went outside at recess and animated the games, teaching students the rules and cheering them on along the way. They had so much fun and even asked when we would do this again!

1/3 of our Healthy School Committee!

We have decided to do this once a month and shall teach games according to season (as winter approaches, our yard will be full of snow). Another component to this project is to train senior students to become animators as well. The goal is to have older students engaging their peers and younger counterparts in games. 

We are hoping that this endeavour will motivate students to become more active, interact with one another, learn new games and most importantly have a positive and enjoyable recess.

Here's to healthy and active students!
Until next time...

Ms. Nicole xo


Cheers to Friendship and a New Look!

Hello Sweet Friends,

This evening, I want to talk to you about my very good friend Valerie. She has to be one of the greatest people I know! She is an awesome friend, great blogger, and even better teacher! We met during our second field experience in teacher training. We were thrown into the very same classroom and almost expected to compete with one another. That's not how Valerie and I decided to roll! Instead, we helped one another and shared ideas (probably should have known that years later we'd become bloggers). Soon, we became good friends and our friendship as grown and  I can proudly say that she has been my GREAT friend for the last 10 years! 
Wow, time flies when your'e having fun and have amazing friends!

Well, you must be wondering why I am writing an entire post about this amazing woman. It's quite simple you see! She did the greatest thing for me today and I just had to share. I don't know about you, but I have my share of great days and not so great days. Today, was really not such a great day! Let me tell you all about how my friend Valerie made it all better! I know my cyber friends will truly understand me (it's a blogging thing)!

It all started a few days ago, when Valerie revamped her blog. Did I mention she's a fellow blogger?! Well, she is, and quite a great one at that. She is the author of All Students Can Shine and she is definitely stalker worthy :) As I said, she redecorated her blog and did an awesome job (if you are looking for a new look and want a great designer, check her out). I was so in love with her new look and couldn't stop telling her how much I loved it! I also love the graphics she used. They are so vibrant and pop right off the screen. You can check those out at Just So Scrappy Too. All this to say, I was extremely proud of her work and couldn't stop telling her how wonderful she is (cause she really is) and what a great job she did (cause it looks really awesome). 

Fast forward to today, and I am having the most overwhelming, action packed day EVER! The kids were amazing and we got a lot done, but I simply didn't have a chance to catch my breath. Throw in the looming report card deadline and a bunch of meetings, and needless to say, I was feeling swamped, frustrated, stressed, and overall on the verge of  breaking down! 

Well, you wont believe it but Valerie turned my frown upside down with a Facebook message!
This is what it looked like!

I was on break when she sent this to me! Not to worry, I don't teach and text!

So she made my day and then made my night when she actually revamped my entire blog for me!!!! Isn't it amazing! Both the blog and the act of kindness of course! 
I'm so happy with my new look and can't wait to add a few more finishing touches with her this week! 

We shall be celebrating with a girls night real soon! Val you rock! Thanks a bunch! Love you!
Here's to another 10 years of friendship! Friends like you don't come around all that often!

So cyber friends... Here's to friendship!
Until next time...
Ms. Nicole xo (extra kisses for my buddy Val)


Rounding Fun Freebie

Hey cyber friends, 
I don't know about your kiddies, but mine sure have difficulty getting the whole rounding bit sorted out. We have practiced many ways and have all kinds of tricks up our sleeves, but somehow it just doesn't stick for everyone! I came up with a little idea that I thought might help my little guys and gals and it did just that! They loved it and had a clear visual of what number to round to.

I simply made schoolhouses (well scrappindoodles made them, I just tweaked them a little) with the numbers 0-100 (by tens). I stuck them on the board and drew a number line between each schoolhouse. Then I had the kiddies place the school buses on the right place on the number line (one at a time, not all at once) and asked them which school was closest. I said Winter is on its way and the students on the bus will feel cold outside, so we need to send them to the school where they will have to do the least amount of walking! Who knew this would actually help!

I thought some of you might like to try it out the next time you're trying to teach about rounding to the nearest ten. It surely was a great help for me and so I am posting it for my very special cyber friends! 
Hope it helps!

Grab yourself a FREE copy right over HERE!

Oh, we started our Fairy Tale unit today and the kiddies started writing some amazing stories about princesses and princes! So cute! Can't wait to share!

Until next time...
Ms. Nicole

Thanksgiving Fun!

Hey everyone, 
I gotta say, I really love daylight savings time! I woke up at my usual "work" time this morning but didn't feel the habitual exhaustion and lack of motivation to get up! So happy! WE are an early school and I gotta say, it was rough getting up in the dark these last few weeks (it was also rough being at school when it's still dark out!).

As I've mentioned before, I love Fall and so I have created a few activities to celebrate the season! My kiddies are loving my "Jump in the Leaves Craft."

And, of course my kiddies had a great time, back in October, making these funny little turkeys! 

 Grab them right over HERE and HERE!

I'm starting a Fairy Tale theme with the kiddies this week! Can't wait!

Until next time...
Ms. Nicole xo

Take Home Freebies!

Hi All,
I can't believe we are already in November AND I especially can't believe I actually got my freebies up and posted!I hope you all had a wonderful Halloween and got lots and lots of candy! I love Halloween and I had a blast with the kiddies at school. They had such original costumes and were just so stinken cute!

Last year I had a celebrity theme going on in my classroom and the students were celebrities of the week! I got the idea from Cara Caroll over at The First Grade Parade and absolutely loved it. This year, I turned my classroom into a jungle and so I decided to tweak my star student of the week! 
The result is this...

Students will fill out a two page package about themselves, share it with their peers, along with their favorite storybook, and special object. 
They will also get to spend the week sitting at, DRUMROLL PLEASE...

The Explorer of the Week Jeep!

Let me tell you, this was such a big hit! I simply covered a regular classroom desk with brown paper, made headlights out of construction paper and used small baskets to hold up the jeep bar (also made out of brown paper). I covered the small baskets with zebra print duck tape (available at your local Michaels!). The chair is covered in zebra print felt (also Michaels! Man, I love that place and now we finally have one in Quebec!). 

I googled safari themed classrooms and saw a picture from a GREAT BLOG: Buzzing About Second Grade. Go check it out! She is awesome! The jeep is thus, a borrowed idea! This teacher, however, had turned all the students desks into jeeps! It's quite a sight!  

You can grab yourself a copy of this sweet little freebie right over HERE!

Now for my second freebie! Yay, two! 
Last year, during my circus theme craze, I sent home a little guy by the name of Walter the Elephant! He was such a hit that I decided to do the same again this year, except I put a little Jungle spin on it! 
Now the kiddies get to bring home CHEECH! 

He just so happens to be a leftover Baby Shower decoration that my attendant brought in
 (she likes to get into the themes too!). 

Every few days, a lucky student gets to bring Cheech home for an adventure. The student writes about his/her time spent with the monkey and then shares with the class. 

You can grab yourself a copy right over HERE!

Hope you enjoy the freebies!
Until next time...

Ms. Nicole xo


Spooktacular Sale!

Hi Everyone, 
Boy am I ever having trouble staying caught up these days!
It's non-stop corrections and evaluations! I'm going a little bonkers here!
Please tell me I'm not the only one!!!!?!?!?!?! This year I added a fifth grade language arts class to my assignment, so I am teaching in two cycles and the materials are completely different! I'm loving both my grades but it is a lot of work! My blogging is suffering because of it! 
I really want to try to blog more than once a week! I am going to do my best! 
Report cards will be out of the way in the next two weeks and hopefully I will be able to devote more time to the blogging world! 

So my all time favorite season of the year is here and I am loving every second of it! Although I dislike Canadian winters, I must admit that I truly appreciate the fact that we have four seasons and get to experience them all fully (weather wise that is!). 

Just take a look at the view outside my bedroom window! I mean can it get any better than this?!?!

I looooooove it!

Now with Fall comes some of my favorite holidays! Thanksgiving and Halloween (I wrote them in this order specifically because Canadian Thanksgiving is of course at the beginning of October). 

There is a wonderful sale on TpT and I have decided to join in on the fun! 20% off ALL my units including Halloween and Thanksgiving!

Stop on over to my STORE to grab yourself some great deals!
Here are some of the Fall treats you can find!

I still have some great freebies sitting on my desktop! I just need to upload them and post! I am aiming for the end of this week! My kiddies loved them and I want to share with all of you! 

Until next time..
Ms. Nicole xo


Hocus Pocus Giveaway!

My sweet cyber friends,

It seems as though this year just keeps getting busier and busier! I want to blog so much and have many things to share but I just can't seem to find the time these days! The end of term is approaching (already!) and it's crunch time for Ms. Nicole! I am hoping to share some freebies with you soon!
Before that, I would like to let you know about a great giveaway going on over at Forkin Fourth! Antonia is having a Halloween themed giveaway and you have the chance to get all kinds of great units! I have donated my Stinky Poems to this wonderful giveaway!

If you are looking for some great ways to celebrate Halloween, check out my Teacher Store.
I have 2 craftivities and 1 literacy center unit! 

Check out my Stinky Poems craftivity HERE!
My kiddies loved it!

I also had my kiddies make some monster mail! It was so much fun!
Check it out HERE!

This week I plan to have my kiddies take part in some Halloween Literacy Activities!
Take a look over HERE!

Happy Halloween and be back soon!
Until next time..
Ms. Nicole xo

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