Integrated Themes

When you take a look at my schedule, you’ll notice that there is not a specific time set aside for science or social studies.  That’s because we integrate thematic units throughout our day.  For example, during our Me on the Map unit, we are reading maps, creating maps, writing about our maps, and learning about maps through digital and traditional literature.  You can visit specific blog posts that feature pictures and detailed information about each thematic unit.  Check them out below!


Me on the Map  ♦  Apples  ♦  Seasons  ♦  Weather  ♦  Habitats  ♦  Animal Groups  ♦

Ocean Life  ♦  Insects  ♦  States of Matter and Water Cycle  ♦  Community Helpers  ♦

Plant Growth  ♦

Whoah! Check THIS out.

I can’t believe the names on this list of upcoming Twitter Chats! And….MY NAME is with them. Wowzers! If you’re new to Twitter or never have participated in a Twitter Chat, I highly encourage you to consider attending. There’s a practice session that teaches you the ins and outs of Twitter Chats. It takes place right before the actual chat.

Add these to your calendar! I’ve attended a couple already, and they’re GREAT!


Good Luck Minis

While on my annual Schoolhouse GB shopping trip, I ran across a display at the checkout counter.  You know where this is leading…right?  =)  It was the kind of display that was purposely put at the checkout counter because buyers-beware:  What’s Displayed is Hard to Dismiss.  They were “Good Luck Minis” – small, miniature, plastic animal figurines.


Spinning the carousel of minis, I secretly hoped, “Let there be eagles, let there be eagles!”  And of course there were!  Because eagles are awesome.  That’s why!

You see, we are the Southern Door Eagles.  Our school is an Early Childhood – 12th Grade campus.  Our Eagle Pride runs strong!  We are also a PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports) school.  And I just had to have these little bitty eagles for our monthly elementary Super Star celebrations.


Classroom teachers nominate students for the monthly Super Star celebrations.  Nominees receive a medallion necklace, a certificate, and (in my classroom) a “Good Luck Mini” eagle.  I packaged them in a small craft, zipper top craft/bead baggie, with a label I had from a previous Vista Print order.

I’ve given out two month’s worth of Super Star nomination Mini Eagles.  The students LOVE them!  They actually match the larger eagle figurine that we have in our classroom.



Exciting News!

I received a call this morning that I was selected as the National Rural Teacher of the Year!  I’m still trying to wrap my mind around this news.  I just wanted to post a message about how grateful I am to work with a great TEAM of educators.  Daily I am amazed at the work that is done in schools for students and communities.  I am glad to be a part of that TEAM, from the local level at Southern Door Schools, in Door County Wisconsin, to schools across the world.  Thank you for all you do for students and communities!

First Month of School Planning

It’s the night before the first day of school.  I’m in front of my computer right now, planning.  I’m trying a few different things this year, in hopes of accomplishing more, and remembering what it is that I want to accomplish the first days, weeks, month of school!

New:  SMARTboard Schedule ♦ Evernote To-Do Lists ♦ Anchor Chart Pre-Prep

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download-icon Download or View First Week of School SMARTboard File

I still use already-established practices that help me to get ready for the first month of school.

Continue to Use:  Literacy “First Days” ♦ Mentor Book Lists ♦ Lesson Plans ♦ Unit Plans

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download-icon View or Download the Literacy “First Month of School” Scope and Sequence

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download-icon View or Download my Mentor Book Lists

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download-icon View or Download Weekly Lesson Plans

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download-icon  View or Download Unit Plans for Reading/Writing