Friday, January 2, 2015

December fun!

Well, I just got back from a MUCH NEEDED vacation in St. Croix! I still have several days of relaxation and then back to work.
Here are just a few pics from our vacation.............

Have you ever heard of "island time"? Me either!'s equivalent to the idiom "slow as molasses". This city girl does not have the patience for "island time" all. I thought my head was going to pop off if they didn't move faster. If you are are inviting them to move even slower. 
Did I have fun? Absolutely! My husband and I had a wonderful time reconnecting and disconnecting from reality and it was much needed. 
If you decide to go here...don't be in a hurry....EVER. And if you like a cocktail or two, order 4-6 at a time. I'm not kidding! 
Now for some pics from our fun filled December!

These are my top 5 AR test takers and they received this warm fuzzy as big as their head.... that is worth a whopping 200 fuzzies. Talk about motivation to read! It's been a mad dash for the computers daily ever since I found these bad boys. I got them on clearance at Michael's Craft Store after Halloween for 29 cents each!

We have been loving our new Ipad cart at school. We have several carts that we can check out weekly. I check them out for Daily 5 and our math work stations.

Now for tons of pics of our classroom elf. This is how he arrived!

So Mr. Lynne (our awesome head custodian) is the one who climbed on the roof a few years ago to take a pic of my students making a human peace sign. I love this guy! So I prepped him in the morning and he was nervous. I just said go with the flow and follow my lead...oh & promise not to make fun of me or tell the office how I act in front of the So he came in and said he found this package on the roof! He was decorating up there and low and behold this was dropped off above our classroom with our name on it! Um....genius, right? 
We tried using our inferring skills to figure out what was in our package. They did not want to make this a learning experience whatsoever. Just open the bag Mrs. Dillard!

 The suspense................

 What???? We got an elf for our classroom? In a balloon?!?! 
What an epic elf arrival!

I'm so shocked still....can't you tell? I'm reading them the note directly from the North Pole!

Mrs. Dillard even got something! A naughty and nice student report! I'm so glad I have such a good class and didn't have to send any naughty notes!

Each student got their very own journal to document and have forever memories.

We had to find a place for our elf to sit while we named him. He had a perfect view of the classroom.

According to the note we had a very important job of giving our classroom elf a name......

We each had our own voting slip and graph to fill out. Our elf had to make sure we were hitting our standards ;o).

Now we have all the names in our special voting bag. We have to narrow it down to three. Our three names that were drawn from the bag were Elfie Jr., Sporty Elf, & Elf. It was extremely hard for me not to sway the vote. I felt like the big guy was watching me too! Ha! 

The name that won was Elfie Jr!!!!

Now it was time to fill out the beginning of our elf journal! They were so excited that they each received this all the way from the North Pole!

To our surprise Elfie Jr. borrowed my push pins and escaped from his arrival balloon! He brought the boys and girls a mailbox, pencils and special notes to write to him. Isn't he thoughtful?

He even left the kids a message and helped himself to my Olaf post its. The students know how much I love my post it's so I was not happy :o)

The next day the students came and in we could not find our Elf. We were very worried so we called Mrs. Hemphill and figured out where he was! He was fishing with her elf in her classroom! Those little stinkers!

Here the boys are looking at a special note "H" got from Elfie Jr. He forgot to leave him a treat the day before so he left him 6 chocolates! Elfie Jr. must have been in a hurry!

After the students got back from special they had a special treat on their desk. He always snuck on my computer...or I forgot to write a quick note. I'd always sneak myself a pic and have it on there when my "electrician" turned on our smartboard for the next lesson. 

Here is Elfie Jr. the next day just hanging around getting in the way. He had a very good view of the class here but I bet he got dizzy.

elf surveillance

I had my elf surveillance sign hanging outside our door along with my student report book. This pic must have been snapped during bus

We found Elfie Jr. hanging in our window the next day. Apparently, he thinks the hallway needs some monitoring.

We came back from special and couldn't find him again...he left the entire first grade a message on our lockers.

 I love these pictures!!!!!

They loved filling out their daily elf report. This can all be found in my Ultimate Elf in the Classroom Kit.

Elfie Jr. invited and clothed our classroom pets and they had a sleepover! Just make yourself comfortable Elfie Jr. Did you notice his chevron pj's? I hit an all time low this year. Clothes for the elf? Why, yes! Tons!
Here is just one of the several treats that were left daily. The parents in my class were outstanding with this top secret mission. We had to get all the treats to school without them seeing or figuring it out. They never suspected a thing!

This map is from the amazing Lyndsey's holiday around the world pack. I use everything she makes in our classroom! Love her stuff!

Uh-oh! I was home sick so Mr. Elfie Jr. thought he should be the substitute! Thanks to Stacey from Teaching Ever After for filling in for me!

This was very last minute but it turned out so CUTE! All I did was throw some chevron wrapping paper up on a spare bulletin board and called the students over three at a time. They loved it!!!!

selfie with elfie

selfie with elfie

selfie with elfie

I know I am missing a ton of Elfie Jr.'s escapades ....sorry. If anything, I hope I give you some ideas for next year!

 Elfie Jr. planted some mints while we were gone. The next day we found this!

Check out our last surprise!!!!!

Our very special guest read "The Polar Express"!

Our last treats were wrapped books for everyone & a pair of elf pants (from Lakeside Collection) full of treats! I read this special story called Holidays with the Right Family. I used the story with 20 passes and they had an absolute blast! Thanks to Christy and Tammy from Fluttering through First Grade for this freebie!

 If you are anything like are just now getting back into school mode. I have been printing and laminating like a mad woman! Here is a peek at my Winter-licious CCSS Aligned ELA Unit. This is one of my favorite units!

Here is a detailed list of each center: 
1. Winter ABC Order: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.2
12 full color word cards with center cover & accountability sheet included.

2. Let In Snow Syllables: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.2c, RF.1.3d, RF.1.3e
12 full color word cards (one, two, three & four syllables) & 4 syllable sorting mats. Center cover & accountability sheet included.

3. Penguin Parts of Speech: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.1.5a, L.1.5d
Full color noun, verb & adjective sorting mats, 12 full color word cards (4 nouns, 4 verbs, 4 adjectives). Center cover & accountability sheet included.

4. Chill Out Winter Word Sort: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.3
Full color Read/Silly sorting mats, 24 full color word cards (12 read, 12 silly). Center cover & accountability sheet included.

5. Snowmates Compound Word Sort: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.3e
Full color Compound/Not Compound sorting mats, 24 full color word cards (12 compounds, 12 are not compounds). Center cover & accountability sheet included.

6. Snow Special Synonyms: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.1.5b
24 full color synonym word cards. Center cover & accountability sheet included.

7. Arctic Antonyms: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.3, RF.1.3g
24 full color antonym word cards. Center cover & accountability sheet included.

8. Scrambled Sentences: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.1a
5 different 7-15 word scrambled sentence cards. Center cover & a b&w reproducible book to write & illustrate their sentences.

9. Stashing Through the Snow: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.1.1e, L.1.4c
Past, present & future tense center. 3 full color sorting mats & 30 full color word cards. Center cover & accountability sheet included.

10. Peace, Love & Penguins: Fact or Opinion: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.4a, RI.1.10, RL.1.10
Full color Fact or Opinion sorting mats, 6 fact cards & 6 opinion full color cards. Center cover & accountability sheet included. 

I marked this unit 1/2 price! It will be 1/2 price through Sunday! Grab it HERE! 


  1. Cannot stand all your fabulousness! Your lil elf hoopla looks amazing-how fun for you kiddos. They are one lucky group!
    So sorry you had to suffer through those horrible conditions in St. Croix. Just poor thing!
    Hope your year is off to a great start!!!
    ~Christy & Tammy

  2. How did you get the Elf in the balloon?

  3. Hi, Nice work, I've bookmarked this page and have a feeling I'll be returning to it regularly.

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