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Springtime is the BEST time! 
Except for one thing...I am new to this thing I used to always here people talking about...I think they call them "allergies" and they're awful! I never used to have them, and then after living in Alabama and South Carolina for a total of 8 years, I developed some sort of outdoor allergy in Florida! The state I grew up in now gives me the sneezies for about two whole months!

Other than that one, minor issue we won't discuss anymore...I love spring! My husband and I are spring birthdays, and so is my two year old daughter! Our son, due in September, will be the "odd man out" in this family! 

This time of year is especially great for teachers. It can be rough...getting close to the end of the year but not quite close enough...test prep...kids start pushing your buttons you didn't know you had...all of the "end of year" teacher stuff we have to do with paperwork, advancement, etc.... in other words...why do I love spring?

For the FLOWERS and the SUNSHINE and the WEATHER!

This bulletin board makes it SO simple to bring SPRINGTIME in your classroom or the halls of your school. You can choose one subject to focus on, or showcase the many different subjects in which your students have progressed. I like to showcase different subjects because I use this as a form of "test prep" without my students knowing that we are actually test prepping...


You can easily create this project using the item below, found in my TpT store HERE, or click the cover image below. This product comes with everything you need to create this craftivity easily in your classroom, as well as three different ready-made content activities: 
Math: factoring (factor flowers)
Social Studies: Important Event
ELA (or any subject vocab): Word Study


You can see below in the boomerang videos that I created them so that you can flip up the flower pot to see the student's work, which is also displayed neatly on the flower petals and leaves themselves. 




I want to make this as easy as possible for you all, since this IS such a crazy time of the year. Below you can find the lettering I used for the bulletin board you saw in the first image as a FREEBIE with this blog post. I used colored copy paper / Astrobrights to create them easily with black and white ink only! This gives you the leeway to print them on whichever colors you choose! 


Enjoy!
Thanks for reading! 


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A super easy way to make a bulletin board cute AND meaningful is to add a little hashtag message in the corner! It can be at the top or bottom of a bulletin board, in a doorway, etc! Anywhere your kids may look, where you otherwise wouldn't normally have a decoration. Use your key classroom phrases or vocabulary around your room to keep your messages meaningful! But also...HOW CUTE?!

You can totally do this on your own to make it match your room; however, if you'd like the one pictured above, I have linked it below! You can either print out ready-made circles OR save paper by typing directly onto the editable circles I have in the pack, also. Whichever works best for you! 


Hope you love it :) 
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I have never been more serious about a statement than the title of this blog post. 

Nothing is Better than Mountain Air

I slept better, felt better, ate better...everything! 

I should explain...the eating better part is mostly because my mom is amazing and cooked perfect meals for all of us while we were there.
The sleeping part is definitely because Flynn slept SO well there, in the closet of our bedroom, so Will and I had some of the best sleeps ever! We slept in until almost TEN every single day! What?!?!

Each year my family spends a week together in the mountains, at my parents' summer home. It is always such a special week because we are all together, all in one house, all day! The kids have so much fun and it is truly amazing to watch the little cousins all growing up together! Flynn is not yet part of the "big kid" group, but I was so excited that she was walking around so well by the time of this trip. 


So that's the group! We are getting bigger and bigger in size each year. 2018 alone will bring us THREE new babies! We are so so lucky. I love that I grew up to be close with my sisters, have been able to become close with my brother-in-laws, and now I get to watch Flynn grow up close with her cousins! There is nothing more special than family. 

My favorite thing we did while we were in the mountains was take two boats out (yes, we had to take two since we are a big group). The older kids got to ride on Big Mable (if you're a lake lover, you definitely know her....haha! If you aren't familiar, she is the blow up couch you can pull behind a boat) and they had so much fun! We weren't sure what Flynn would think of her first boat ride, but she loved it! She said "weeee" the entire time, while her hair blew in the wind! This is exactly what she does at Disney anytime a ride is fast, or in the grocery store when I push the cart quickly, haha! She amazes me every day! Will and I dream of living on a lake, with a boat, one day...so we are so happy Flynn liked it! 



We also celebrated July 4th with everyone! Flynn got her first balloon creation from a balloon fairy, and loved it! Her outfit is from one of my favorite shops, Cecil and Lou! 


Flynn is in that stage where she is so happy she can walk everywhere she wants to, and I LOVE IT! So many people told me I would want to rewind and have her sitting on the floor in one place...that I would miss the day I could put her down and not worry about her getting into things...
UM....NO! 
I LOVE her walking!!!!! She is so fun! I am getting to see so much more of her personality!

(Another one of my favorite new outfits for Flynn is made by Claire and Charlie, but I shopped it at Oodles and Maggie in the Biltmore Village in Asheville. Click here to see their shop)

So I know this wasn't teaching related...but we all need a summer break! I wish I could still be in the mountains, but I'll settle for south Florida with my huge family for now ;) !! 

Thanks for catching up with me! Hope everyone is having a wonderful summer and taking advantage of extra time with your family!
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What time is it?
Time for your students to learn how to tell ELAPSED time!



Below you'll see everything included in this pack! I am going to take you through a little explanation of what exactly all of that is that you see below.


On the left, the tan/blue/pink pages, you'll see the practice pages I included. I usually use these to practice the use of the analog clock before we start this unit. If they aren't great at reading the time on an analog clock, then they will struggle with the whole unit. It's great to address this at the beginning. I slide these into sheet protectors so that my students can use dry erase markers on them. This allows me to reuse these same pages year after year without recopying. Environmentally friendly for the WIN!

The four small decks of cards on the right are four different styles of practice questions. You can use these at a center, as cards in a game with a gameboard, up on your projector screen as a whole group, and in so many more ways! They can even be task cards! 
The reason there are four different decks is because I worded the questioning in four different ways. There are many different ways we see these elapsed time questions in the testing setting. The kids may be totally awesome at solving elapsed time questions, but if the test asks the question in a way they are unfamiliar with, then they will most likely get it incorrect. This allows you to present it to them in four different ways, making them even more fluent at reading/answering these questions than they were before!

In the middle of the photo you see the three white sheets of paper. There is a study and two forms of tests for this pack. I like to use one form of test and then if needed, I have the other form as a re-test. You can use one of them as a pre-test if you think some of your kids maybe don't really need to go through this whole pack (your advanced kids). You can also use them both simultaneously if you think your kids may feel tempted to look at their neighbor's paper for answers ;)

Click here to see different photos and read more about this pack!



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I am super duper late getting this post to you all, but I feel like I should just blame it on my 11 month old ;) haha! No, she is actually the easiest baby EVER and I am so lucky! I just definitely choose to spend my time with her, and put work second...which is great....but sometimes you gotta work!

Also..sometimes you gotta party!
And that is just what we did for my sister, Caitlin, when we showered her for her wedding in the Fall. This party was a combination of decor/supplies from Oriental Trading and decor I created on my own. 

The "Mrs. Berk" sign was just created on my computer, however, everything else you see in this picture was from Oriental Trading!  


The tablecloth, palm leaves, garlands, little donut hole tooth picks, and plates/napkins are all Oriental Trading products! Of course, the letter board was something we already had....doesn't everyone? Haha! If you look closely, you will see the pink tablecloth has a black/white cloth over it on the top...do you see it? THAT tablecloth has lasted us through SO MANY PARTIES! My sister has had that roll of black/white cloth foreverrrrrr and it literally has decorated at least 7 parties by now! We used it for my baby shower, her wedding shower, and her super bowl party...to name a few...and she still has more left on the roll! That stuff is highly highly highly recommended! 

When you first walk in I had a Jenga table set up. No, not for playing! This is where guests and family wrote little messages for the happy couple on Jenga blocks! They get to keep this as a married couple, and when they play the game as a family they can see everyone's sweet messages! 
(There's that black and white tablecloth again!) I made the little instructions card on my computer. 


Our little photo booth set up worked out so well! It helps that the wall in her home is BEAUTIFUL! Balloons are also from Oriental Trading!


We had the gifts set up with balloons around the TV stand. No...football did not stay on throughout the party...haha! We changed it to a music channel. 

The garland below is actually made from bed sheets I got from Wal-Mart! I cut them into strips and knotted them around the string! I actually really REALLY love how this came out. In the future, I would have steamed this out before hanging it... 


Of course, every good party has great food! 
It was sort of like a late breakfast, almost lunch time of day...so it was really just food to pick at while you talked with friends and family. 

I love how the palm leaves look scattered throughout all of the different tables at the party. You have to look closely, because I did not get a great photo, but there are sweet little votive candles all over. The battery operated votive candles AND little gold glasses they are in are from Oriental Trading. I think these are my best pick because I can use them for everything! 


Cutest, sweetest, most adorable toothpicks for eating donut holes EVER!





I created the water bottle labels on my computer.
I printed them on 8.5x11 sticky label paper (made for mailing labels), cut them, and wrapped them around to stick. It really only sticks well if the water is not cold first. 


These "thanks" bags for take-away presents were adorable. I filled two different ziplocks with candy (his favorite and her favorite candies) and put them in the "thanks" bags. People loved the personal touch of the candy being the favorites of the couple!



-Sisters-


Thanks everyone! I definitely only go to Oriental Trading for my party shopping. I have learned my lesson one too many times at the Party store in town. SO EXPENSIVE and the quality is not great. Oriental Trading always gives you a great amount of product for the price and the quality is awesome. I have never had a problem...that's the truth! The colors of things on their site always look right when they come in the mail...that is another concern when throwing a party. They also have a lot of themed stuff, but it also goes well as color schemes, too! I just love them! 
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