Monday, April 30, 2012

FREE MISC. LESSON - “Weekly Planner Sheet”

Colleen Zehr created a handy weekly planner sheet to help you stay organized. Go to “The Best of Teachers Pay Teachers” for this and hundreds of free lessons.

The Best of Teachers Pay Teachers

Daily Language Check #1121-150

The latest packet of Daily Language Checks is now available! There are 30 worksheets in the packet on a variety of interesting and engaging topics. Each worksheet has five questions--one for each cluster on the CST--about the topic. An answer key is included.

My Favorite End of Year Idea - Wonka Week!

Squirrely kidlets?  Me too!  I'm bringing back Wonka Week this year after a long hiatus (I just lost track of time!) and am excited to introduce it to my kids.
Let's do it together!
Buy: a bag or two of small wrapped candy bars (not the vacuum sealed kind – the wrapped in foil-lined paper kind), and 5 candy bars or other "big" prizes.
Print: the Wonka Tickets (on the next page) on yellow/gold paper.
Put: 5 Wonka tickets inside 5 special small candy bars.  You will have to fold them up and possibly reseal the small candy bars.
Get: a beautiful bowl to house all of the little candy bars – keep it visible but not reachable!
Cut: the rest of the Wonka Tickets out and put them in a secure baggie hidden from view.

During the week give out Wonka Tickets instead of your normal classroom incentive to awesomely behaved students. At the end of the day students who received a Wonka Ticket trade it in for a pick in the candy bar bowl.  Students who get a Golden Wonka Ticket in their candy bar get one of the exciting giant prizes!

I typically try to stay away from food incentives, but Wonka Week has been a great end of year treat for the kids (and for me!) in the past, so I'm putting my feelings about the candy-kid-combo aside for 10-14 days.

Teacher trick: to make sure the Wonka fun lasts as long as you want it to, only put one or two special “Golden Ticket” bars in the bowl at a time.  That way you can draw it out for as long as it is effective.  Is this cheating?! 

Click on the link above or on any of the pictures to go to my TpT store to download my Wonka Golden Tickets freebie.  I'm not quite sure how to make Google Docs mesh with my fancy fonts, so hopefully the link isn't a bother.  


Enzymes - Gotta Have "Em!! (and a free lab!)

Enzymes are the stuff of life.  No cell would be alive without the action of enzymes.  Life in a cell is made possible through the hundreds of chemical reactions that occur there.  If these chemical reactions proceed too slowly, the activities of the cell would come to a screeching halt.  

Come on over to my blog.  It is called Science Stuff.  Read all about enzymes and grab my FREE lab on enzymes while you are there!

Spend some time having fun with Top 10 Kids' Movies (  FREE Lesson!)

May Activities

Here are some May activities to keep students engages during the last weeks of school:
Mother's Day Activities for Elementary Grades (

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Classroom Management Tool - Having a Bad Day? Go to Australia!

This idea goes along with the book Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day and comes from one of my college professors.  In his room, he had a table reserved as "Australia".  If one of his students was having a bad day they could go work at the Australia table for a few minutes until they were feeling better.

I've never quite had room to make a whole Australia table, so I use little Australian flags.  I introduce the Alexander book on the first week of school and talk to my students about the flags.  If one of my kiddos is having a bad morning/recess/undisclosed mental emergency, they can go get an Australian flag and put it on their desk.  They may NOT give fiendish stares to another student who may be causing their Australia emergency, they may just put the flag on their desk, take a few deep breaths, and know that I'll give them a little leniency until they put the flag back.

This has always worked really well, although there have been a few times I've had some fiendish stare-ers who needed a reminder or two on appropriate flag usage.  These work especially well for shy students who might not want to talk about exactly what is bothering them immediately, or for students who need a second to process an eventful lunch recess.

If you're wondering -- Do any of your students want to live in Australia?  Do they want to be there every second of every school day?  The answer is: of course!  When a perma-flag situation arises we have a little chat and figure out what we can do to make life a little happier (for both of us!)  :)

Adding and Subtracting Integers Games, Activities, Worksheets and Notes

Hi everybody! I am working through Adding and Subtracting Integers with my class. We're doing the chapter in "station" format and it's been working fairly well! I've posted my integer games and activities on TPT. I've got over 60 pages worth for $8 and the kids really enjoyed it this year! Come on over to my TPT Store to have a look!

Here's a little preview:

Integer Games, Stations and Worksheets: Lessons From The Middle

Integer Games, Stations and Worksheets: Lessons From The Middle

Integer Games, Stations and Worksheets: Lessons From The Middle

Integer Games, Stations and Worksheets: Lessons From The Middle

It is time to review for the AP Biology exam!

The key to success is REVIEWING!!

If you have taught AP (Advanced Placement) Biology, then you know that the amount of material that must be covered before the exam is daunting.  

The group I have this year makes me very proud!  I will have 61 taking the 2012 exam.  They have such potential to do well!!  I just have to convince them how important it is to study and review for the exam.

What does it take to be successful on the AP Biology exam?  REVIEW, REVIEW, REVIEW!

Come to my blog and read the complete article.  And while you are there, grab a FREE PowerPoint to use for reviewing organic compounds.

The Real Meaning of Cinco de Mayo

As a Spanish teacher, this week is my least favorite time of year. All of a sudden all you see are sombreros and piñatas. Must mean another Cinco de Mayo is upon us. You would think as a Spanish teacher I would be excited about this "holiday", but instead I just become frustrated, embarrassed, and insulted.

Despite many people's assumption, Cinco de Mayo is not an national holiday in Mexico. It is certainly NOT Independence Day and in fact, is celebrated more in the United States, than in Mexico. It does not represent all people who speak Spanish, because Latinos are not all Mexican. But like I said, it does not even represent Mexico. In fact, most Mexicans are actually insulted by people who wish them a "Happy Cinco de Mayo".

To read the history of Cinco de Mayo, which represents ONE battle at the town of Puebla that the Mexicans won against the French (although they did end up losing the war, and France imposed a relative of Napoleon as the ruler of Mexico for a short period), check out MexOnline's page.

Now, just imagine the people of Mexico wishing an American a Happy May 4th. Why May 4th? Well, that's the day the Confederate Army defeated the Union at the Battle of Chancellorsville. Imagine Mexican having huge parties every year with American flags, celebrating American Independence. You mean no one celebrates this day in the United States? It's not Independence Day?  Well, neither is Cinco de Mayo celebrated in Mexico, besides the actual town of Puebla, where the battle originally took place.

So teachers, please stop celebrating this with your students. There is more to the Mexican culture than sombreros and piñatas. For a FREE lesson about 10 Misconceptions that exist in the US about Spanish and the people who speak it, download our 10 slide powerpoint. It's time we start educating our students with actual facts and not perpetuate Commercial/Beer Holidays.

Click image to go to FREE product page

For more information, read my blog post about why I don't celebrate Cinco de Mayo and read this year's post on what Mexicans think of Cinco de Mayo along with free resources.

So if you see someone who speaks Spanish this upcoming weekend, do us all a favor and do not wish them a Happy Cinco de Mayo. They'll be glad you didn't.

Spanish Plans

Cinco de Mayo Ready Resource!

Cinco de Mayo is right around the corner, are you ready? With my latest resource, you can be! Teach your students about this widely-celebrated holiday while having lots of fun! There are 40 pages of activities for your primary learners to do. Activities include literacy and math printables and there is even a reproducible book about Cinco de Mayo in there! Don't wait, hop on over to TeachersPayTeachers to download my newest resource at just $6.00! Please leave feedback if you LOVE IT as much as I DO!!! Click the first pic to go there now! :0)



Rockin' Teacher Materials: A Math Linky & Winner of the Easi-Speak!

Rockin' Teacher Materials: A Math Linky & Winner of the Easi-Speak!: I found this awesome blog and they have a Math Linky party going on! There are already some great blog posts listed and there are only 8 hours left to join! Oh, and did I tell you . . . we have a winner of the Easi-Speak!

See you in a few!


Up, Down, and All Around

...student engagement in these final weeks of school can be challenging. My 7th grade math students are working on metric and customary conversions. And our unit test is just around the corner. Be sure to hop over to my blog for more details on how I get my students moving for a whole class review with this cooperative learning activity.

This is a FREE product available at my TpT store.

Have a great week...make it count!

Lisa Tilmon from Mrs. Tilmon Says...

Free Science Journals

Journals are a great way for students to record observations in science, and it seems like observations are a large component of science in the early grades.

I've created two science journals for our kinder class- though their great for any early elementary age.  There's one for weather and one for plants.  Click on the pictures to head to my TpT store to download yours for FREE!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Variety of literacy activities!

New product that gives students a fun way to practice literacy skills including summary, synonyms and more!

3rd Grade Common Core Math

After receiving many, many requests, I decided to create a 3rd grade set of my Common Core math review packs.  There are 40 pages in the set and each page practices 5 standards.  Each standard is spiraled throughout the pack so students get repetitive practice without getting bored from looking at the same thing over and over.  This pack includes every single Common Core standard for 3rd grade.  As with all of the others, I put 4 pages for free in the preview file so you can try it out with your students before you decide to buy it.  Click on the picture to head to my TpT store to download it.

Non-Fiction Text Structure Giveaway!

Check out my blog post about "Non-Fiction Text Structures" and enter the text structure packet giveaway! All you have to do is leave a comment on how YOU use non-fiction text structures in the classroom! (Easy enough, right?)

Two winners will be selected on May 1st to receive all five of my text structure packets (a $12.50 value!).

Be sure to read the additional comments to learn about how other teachers use text structures in their classrooms! A great way to learn and share at "Reading.Writing.Thinking.Sharing"!

Enter the contest by sharing a comment HERE

You only have a few days left! 
Good Luck! 

FREE MATH LESSON - “Fluency Flashcards: Math Facts to 5”

Vickie Plant created flashcards to help your Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten students master the math facts to 5. Go to “The Best of Teachers Pay Teachers” for this and hundreds of free lessons.

The Best of Teachers Pay Teachers