Thursday, April 17, 2014

Sneaky Kids!

I am able to track my website statistics through a website called StatTracker. I absolutely love it as it provides me with SO much information about how people are finding me online!

I have noticed there are some sneaky students (I assume) who are looking for answers to my resources. Check this out…


Three of the 5 search engine referrals are for sneaky kids (again, I assume) looking for answers! One has terrible spelling skills by the way! I can even see where the searches are originating. So if you’re a teacher in Canton Ohio, Boise Idaho or Saint Clairsville Ohio – your students may be trying to pull a fast one! Winking smile

Then, as if that wasn’t bad enough, yesterday I had this question in my store…


If this was someone who’d actually purchased my product, they would have known the answer key was in the download.

Sneaky, sneaky kids! Smile

Monday, April 14, 2014

Real World Math

One thing that really disappoints me about all the standardized testing is the fact that so many teachers feel the need to “teach to the test” and just teach the skills necessary to pass the test. There is so much pressure on teachers since many states gauge a teacher’s success by the classroom test scores. Because of this pressure, many teachers don’t feel like there is enough time to add much fun to their classroom.

I believe that, no matter what the skill and no matter what the time frame, it is SO important to tie everything (or as much as possible) to the “real world.”

Real World Math Checkbook Lesson and Activity

One of my favorite activities was a Checkbook Activity I used with my intervention groups. We would start with a small decimal operations review, and then get right to it!

check writing 1

Students not only had practice adding and subtracting with decimals, but also would learn how to keep a transaction register and write checks. One year I had a student ask me why I was teaching her how to write a check. I told her, that chances were, nobody else was going to do that. When I was in high school there was a life skills math class. Students learned how to manage money and were able to reinforce the math skills that they WOULD be using in “the real world.” Today, classes like that are few and far between.

check writing


I always stress the importance of (1) handwriting, (2) filling out the check completely and (3) spelling…


(That always makes me giggle)

Comment on this post and let me know:

1) Do you think teachers often stray away from “creative” and “fun” lessons due to restrictions of testing?

2) What is your favorite real world activity that you use in your classroom?

Monday, April 7, 2014

Logic Puzzles

The logic puzzles I’ve posted in my store have really been a big hit. I am happy to see that so many teachers still use these in their classrooms. I loved them when I was in school!

I just posted a new bundle of logic puzzles to keep those little brains sharp right up until summer break!

Check it out!

Summer Logic Puzzles

Summer Logic Puzzles PREVIEW

Monday, March 31, 2014

My Life Monday–My Goals as a Kid

What did you want to be when you “grew up”?

I actually wasn’t one of those people who wanted to be a teacher. It wasn’t anything I considered until I got a little bit older.

The first job I ever remember wanting to have was a Veterinarian. We didn’t have pets growing up (my parents said they were too much work and we were too busy – they were right!) so I have no idea where the idea came from. It wasn’t until my neighbors had a dog pass away that I changed my mind. I realized that as a vet, I would have to see animals die, and I didn’t think my little heart could handle that.


Next on my list was a doctor. I didn’t really know what kind of doctor, I just knew I wanted to help people. That dream quickly faded when I realized I couldn’t stomach the sight of blood or injuries of any kind. Not really a good quality for a doctor to have! When I taught 4th grade right out of college, I remember a student coming to me and saying, “Look Miss Lucas (my maiden name) – Look how wiggly my tooth is!” I seriously almost threw up… over a wiggly tooth! I’d say it’s a REAL good thing I didn’t pursue medicine!


It’s your turn to share – what were your childhood career dreams?

Friday, March 28, 2014

Spring Cleaning Sale!

So I’m a little late to the party, but I got wind of a pretty big group of sellers who are offering a “Spring Cleaning” sale to help you clean up that wish list! I’m offering 10% off everything in my store (including my mega bundles) starting tomorrow (the 29th) through the 31st!

spring cleaning redux

To check out everyone else who has linked up (there are a TON of sellers), click the image below!


Monday, March 24, 2014

My Life Monday–My Pets

If this were two Mondays ago, a My Pets post would have told you about our 8.5 year old chocolate lab who had been living with another (amazingly, wonderfully fantastic) family for the last year and a half due to us not being allowed to have a pet in the home we lived in before this one.

If this were two Mondays ago, I wouldn’t have done a My Pets post because on March 13th, we received a frantic call from our dog’s new “mommy” that he was suffering terribly from relapsed mast cell disease and was being put down (it came back and took over his body within 6 days). My husband drove 3 hours to be with him, and he passed away that evening.

THIS Monday – we have a crazy little puppy in our lives. But let me back up…

When I found out our dog was very sick (two days before he died) I began feeling very guilty for ever giving him away. I was dealing with depression after our first child was born and moving into a house that didn’t allow pets was my decision. I didn’t see the big deal in giving him to a fabulous family. It would be less stress right?

It wasn’t until he was very sick that I realized how terrible of a mistake that was. My husband and daughter were broken in two once he died and I was broken as well – mainly for realizing how badly they were hurting at my expense. I immediately began a search for a new dog. And I did so in secret!

On my way home from the NCMLE conference last Tuesday, I took a stop in Virginia to meet a little lab puppy who had been born on New Years day. He was precious and I knew he was perfect for us. He was named Titus because he was huge already (29 pounds at 11 weeks) and is expected to be a very large 90-100 pound lab. I told her my husband and I would love to have him (a wee bit of a fib) and we would be back in 3 days to get him. I left with butterflies in my stomach.

When I got home that evening, I showed this picture to my husband…


He was floored! I’m pretty sure his 6’4” tough guy heart just about exploded. I’m certain that the last thing he ever expected was for me to get a new dog.

Our daughter was giddy with excitement and came home from school the next day with this precious picture.


We picked up our pup on Friday and after one night of whimpers from missing his momma and sister, he has quickly settled into our lives. He is fantastic with both of our kids, which was the most important thing to us!

Here’s Titus!


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