Five for Friday

Friday, April 24, 2015 2 comments

I'm very excited to be linking up this week with Doodle Bugs Teaching for her Five For Friday Linky Party. Check out some of the highlights from my week! 



I LOVED this landform project. We spent a week during our "Our World Around Us" unit working on landforms. The first thing we did was construct our landforms with model magic. Surprisingly, one pack of Model Magic was enough for 2 students! Then while we waited for our Model Magic to dry we worked on a digital landform project (read more about it here). Finally, after the weekend our Model Magic was dry and we were able to color it with markers.


Earth Day was this week so of course we celebrated with a very impromptu lesson. I don't know about you, but I have a subscription to Discovery Education at my school and it is truly a LIFESAVER. I just typed in Earth Day and BAM...a 22 minute video which lead to A LOT of new learning on my part and by my students too.

Check out the ways we decided we can save our Earth. 



Have you heard of an website called Noisli? It's pretty neat! Stefano, the creator of Noisli, reached out to me asking me to give it a try in the classroom. Noisli is a simple site which helps boost productivity and focus through background noise. The best part of Noisli is that you can customize what sounds you want to listen to! 


I downloaded the app this week and allowed students to listen while they worked independently and it worked wonders! I have never seen some students so focused and engaged! It was really neat. I also let students create "noise" on the classroom computers, then turned the monitors off (so they aren't tempted to readjust the sound) and watched students work with headphones on. 



This is a bit more on the personal side, but can I just take a minute to talk about how EXCITED I am about my latest Stitch Fix! I just got my 3rd Fix and I loved every single thing in my box. I truly felt like everything I got was something I would grab off the rack.

This time I kept two pieces:

Hansen Scoop Neck Blouse

Mensier Spaghetti Strap Top

Have you been thinking about joining Stitch Fix? Even if you're on the fence I HIGHLY suggest giving it a try, at least for one month (don't forget you can always schedule just one fix at a time, no long term commitment). Sign up by clicking my referral link and be sure to let me know what you think! 


And last but not least, it's Friday and we're down to 20 school days left!

Happy Friday Everyone! 

iPads and Landforms

Thursday, April 16, 2015 No comments

We're in the middle of our latest geography unit called, Our World Around Us and I am LOVING all of the learning activities that go along with it. Students are currently working on learning some basic landforms. We had created landform models with Crayola's Model Magic and I realized we needed to wait 72 hours for them to fully dry before we could color them! So, last night I frantically searched for an activity to fill the time while we waited a few more days. 

I'm always looking for more ways to get more, authentic use of our iPads in the classroom. Which is why I LOVED this idea. Students used the Google Earth app to locate landforms on the globe.

First thing's first, I did a quick demo on how to use the app and how to find different landforms. Some of my kids even had the idea to search "Mount Everest" to locate a mountain or "Florida" to find a peninsula. 

Then we got exploring!


When the kids found landforms they used the iPads to take a screenshot. After the kids had 5-8 landform pictures we started on the next step, importing the pictures into a FREE APP called Flipgram. I love Flipgram because it's FREE and super easy for the kids to use. Also, you don't have to have an account. But, I made a teacher account so that I could email the videos to myself so that I could share them on our class blog. 

Click Here for some more information on using Flipgram in the classroom. Let's be honest, I was familiar with Flipgram because I use it for my own Instagram account - but I wanted some more information on using it in the classroom. 

My students spent about 15-20 minutes searching on Google Earth for landforms and then another 10 minutes to create the presentation with Flipgram. 

And finally, here's the finished product! 



To view the rest of our projects, check out my classroom blog - 2ndWithStrunk.

Book Order Letter - An End of the Year Freebie

Sunday, April 12, 2015 2 comments
I love Scholastic Book Orders. I especially LOVE Scholastic Bonus Points. As we wrap up the school year I always like to remind parents that this is the LAST time they can order books for their kiddos. This helps to drive sales and earns me more points to do some summer shopping.

I usually send home 3-4 Book Order Catalogs at the beginning of the last month of school with a parent letter.


Want to download my FREE parent letter? Head on over to my Teachers Pay Teachers store to grab this FREEBIE today.

Currently: April

Friday, April 3, 2015 6 comments
Thanks to Farley from Oh' Boy 4th Grade I look forward to the beginning of the month because I know that it's time to fill out my CURRENTLY. 


Listening
We've had some insane storms rolling through Missouri today which means indoor recess (wah wah wah!)

Loving
One of my 2nd graders has been in Australia for the past 2 weeks. Her dad is originally from Australia and they visit once a year during this time. Luckily for me their trip aligned perfectly with our "Our World Around Us" unit. Through the unit students are researching and creating presentations on each continent. Since my kiddo in is Australia, naturally she is presenting on Australia! Her dad had the awesome idea of Skyping while they're over there.

We spent part of our day brainstorming some questions to ask during our Skype session. 

My favorite question way about the limos. We asked, and in fact they DO have limousines in Australia lol! 

Then we had the opportunity to call them while we were at school. They made special arrangements to be at the Sydney Opera House for our Skype session. Our students LOVED seeing the Opera House and the Harbor Bridge in "real life" as they call it. 


Thinking
This summer I am so exited to be teaching a 3 week enrichment course that I'm calling Lego Landmarks. Registration opened yesterday and our cap is 24. Unfortunately, if your class doesn't fill you don't teach it - so fingers crossed that my class fills so that I can start planning. 

In the meantime I'm looking for cheap Legos! Did you know how expensive Legos are?! Holy cow! So, I'm thinking maybe a Donors Choose project...but I'm not quite sure yet. Any other great ideas for getting my hands on some Legos?

Wanting
OH. MY. GOODNESS. I am obsessed with my Stitch Fix and my adorable stylist! If you haven't hear of Stitch Fix it's time to educate yourself. If you've heard of it but you're on the fence I highly suggest taking the plunge, even if it's just for one month. It is so much fun and a great way to get some quality pieces for your closet. I truly cannot wait for my next one to arrive! 

You can read about my most recent Fix and all of the goodies I kept by clicking here


Needing
Teachers are always needing more, am I right? Even working in a great district with TONS of resources I'm still always wishing I had more to meet ALL the needs of my kiddos. Right now we are in the middle of a nonfiction reading unit. Unfortunately it's hard for my 2nd graders to apply these reading strategies in a nonfiction book when they can barely read it because it's written at a level W! 

My goal for the weekend is to get my hands on some great nonfiction reads for my 2nd graders. 

Eggs-Plain Your Name
Lame, I know...my name doesn't have an awesome back story. I knew that I wanted a catchy name when I first started blogging and I always considered myself to be pretty trendy. So, A Trendy Teacher was born. 

Read more CURRENTLY posts from other great blogs here

Stitch Fix - My New Obsession

Thursday, April 2, 2015 1 comment

I am absolutely in love with Stitch Fix. I'm on my 2nd Fix now and I wanted to share the awesomeness of this program with you! 

If you haven't heard of Stitch Fix yet, you can read more about it here. Basically it's an online personal styling service. You pay a small styling fee to receive 5 hand picked items in each fix. You keep what you love and return what you don't. Remember that $20 styling fee? That gets applied to whatever you decide to purchase so it isn't wasted. 

The other great thing about Stitch Fix...you can link up your Pinterest account so your stylist can get a better idea of the things you love.


Make sure that when you pin things to your Pinterest board you take the time to comment on your favorite things about each piece. The more feedback, the better! 

Fix #2

Let's take a look at what I got.

PS - I specifically asked for dresses since I'm looking for something to wear to my boyfriend's graduation. Normally you'll get a healthy mix of all kinds of pieces. My stylist just knew I was looking for something specific this time. 

Moni Geo Print & Camisole Blouse


I absolutely LOVED this top. I actually found it on Pinterest and pinned it. My stylist found it and sent it my way, unfortunately it was too small and I had to send it back. I asked my stylist to try it again in a bigger size so we'll see what happens with my next fix.

With each fix you also get these awesome styling cards. I love these and I keep them pinned to the hanger in my closet.


Then finally, when you check out you get a chance to give one last bit of feedback. 
Remember the more feedback the better, this is the only way your stylist gets to know what you like and how things fit. 

Lang Crystal Flower Necklace


After receiving this necklace I actually adjusted my Stitch Fix profile and asked for no more jewelry. I love this necklace but I also love a good sale at J Crew, Target or Francesca's and I can find very similar jewelry there for half the price.


Alexus Dress


This dress was definitely a KEEP for me! I know this will be easy to dress up for a night out, but can also be worn with candles and a denim jacket to work. 



Maude Floral Dress


Another perfect work outfit! I'm already 100% sure I'm wearing this to my next night of Parent Teacher Conferences. I love that these dresses can be dressed up or toned down for a casual school look.



Phoenix Dress


Last but not least, another awesome dress! I've already designated this adorable sundress as my Easter outfit! 



Overall, I have been extremely happy with my Stitch Fix experience. I have learned that important feedback is key! Also, a well rounded Pinterest board won't hurt. 

If you're on the fence about signing up I'd recommend giving it a try! You can always schedule fixes one month at a time - no year long commitment here. I'd love it if you'd use my referral link to register for your first fix. You can do so by clicking here.

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