Monday, June 29, 2015

TpT Seller Challenge: Week 3

I am joining up with Sparkling in Second, Third in Hollywood, Teach Create Motivate, and Peppy Zesty Teacherista for the third challenge in the weekly TpT Seller Challenge.  This week's challenge is called "Make Your Masterpiece" and it asks us to create a 'masterpiece' to add to our store on Teachers Pay Teachers. 

 I was very excited (and overwhelmed) by this challenge.  I did not have any products that needed to be finished, which left me having to start from scratch.  I have had somewhat of a TpT writer's block lately.  After thinking long and hard I decided to create something that I could use next year as the Reading Teacher for K-2.  I know that short vowels are something that all of the grade levels will be working with - whether as a review or as a new skill.  So I created a few worksheets for each short vowel and came up with this:

Yay!  I feel like I may have taken the first step to overcoming this TpT writer's block issue that I have been dealing with.  I am so glad that this was one of the challenges because it forced me to create something that I will be able to use next year (because what is the point of putting all of that time and effort into a product if you can't use it in your own classroom!).  Now I am in the right mindset to continue creating materials and hopefully have a head start on what I will need for next year :)

So enough of my is a preview of the different pages within the set.

The activities are all the same for the five different short vowels.  

  • One of the pages asks that students to sort pictures by different word families.  I love to try and incorporate cutting and pasting into as many of the worksheets as I can because these are skills that my students always seem to struggle with.
  • Another page has the students use the code to color each picture based on the word family it belongs in.  (There are two versions of this page - one of the options asks the students to then write the word underneath the picture while the other does not).          *Only one of the options is shown in the preview
  • On another page the students are asked to read the words and paste the matching picture in the box (There are also two versions of this page - on the first option the pictures are glued on top of the word and on the second option the pictures are glued above the word).
  • The final page asks the students to sort pictures by the medial sound (does it have the short vowel sound or not?).

So there it is, my "masterpiece" :)  I hope that this will help you in your classroom.  Click on the preview (or this link) to grab it for 20% off - today and tomorrow only.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

TpT Seller Challenge: Week 2

 Alright, I should be caught up now with the weekly TPT Challenge organized by Sparkling in Second, Third in Hollywood, Teach Create Motivate, and Peppy Zesty Teacherista - Yay!  The week two challenge was to blog about your dreams for your TPT store. This is something that I love to do!  For this challenge I decided to put my dreams in order of attainability.  Hopefully I can reach at least the first goal on my list...but it sure is fun to dream :)
 Pay for daycare each month:
My first goal (and hopefully one that I can actually reach) is to be able to pay for daycare each month using the money that I make from TpT.  I hate that I have to put my sweet baby in daycare come August, but staying at home is not something that will work for my family at this point.  That being said, the price of daycare is...ridiculous high.  If the money I make from TpT could cover the cost of daycare it would make such a difference!  

Be able to work part time:
I would love to be able to work part time!  Maybe one day the money I make from TpT could allow me to only work part time and then I could stay home with my family for part of the week.  I think that this would be the ideal situation for me.  I got stir crazy when I was on maternity leave and felt the need to get out of the house and go to work.  So if I could work part time I feel like I could get the best of both worlds. 

Stay at home and work on TpT:
Now, I know that I just said that I don't think that I could stay home full time because I would get stir crazy - but if I were able to treat TpT like a job I could stay at home with my family and spend my "work time" creating products.  This is a goal that I know many teachers on TpT have been able to reach, but I think that it is a stretch for me.  But, this challenge is all about dreaming, right??

My husband's goal - Buy land:
This is something that my husband loves to dream about.  If I were ever able to stay home because of TpT and we had enough money, he would love to be able to buy land.  He is more of a dreamer than I am and will sit and look at land for sale.  He has found the perfect property - 248 acres for only 300,000 something dollars.  This is definitely the most far stretched goal on my list...but I will let him dream :)

These are some hefty dreams, but that is something that motivates me to continue with TpT.  What are some dreams that you have?

TpT Seller Challenge: Week 1

I am starting a little late, but I have finally gotten my butt in gear so that I can participate in the TPT Seller Challenge hosted by Emily from Third in Hollywood, Ashley from Teach Create Motivate, Jen from Sparkling in Second and Amber from Peppy Zesty Teacherista!

The first challenge is MAKEOVER MADNESS. This week is all about updating an old product to make it better.  When I was going through my products, one in particular jumped right out at me.  What in the world was I thinking when I posted this as the cover for my product?
This is one of the first products that I posted.  And while the product itself was good, the cover was...unacceptable.  

So for MAKEOVER MADNESS I spruced up the product itself by adding a few different levels of some of the worksheets, fixed the assessment so that it actually aligned with the worksheets in the set and updated the font.  And then I gave the cover a complete overhaul.
I am much happier with how this looks.  And I think that it looks more appealing to buyers.  What do you think?
Click on the picture above to grab the product for 20% off - today only!

Friday, June 26, 2015

It's Been Too Long...

It is hard to believe that it has been six months since I last posted on this blog.  There has been a lot going on since then and I can't wait to share with you all of the exciting changes!

My husband and I welcomed a beautiful little boy into the world on May 2 and it has been incredible and exhausting all at the same time.  It has been a blessing that we are both teachers because we are able to both spend the summer together with Levi.  And for those of you who follow me on Instagram, I apologize for the overload of Levi pictures - I am trying to keep it under control.

Little Levi came two weeks early and was 7 pounds 8 ounces and 20.5 inches long.  My husband and I decided not to find out the sex of the baby so we went in to the hospital with a little girl's name: Bailey Joanne; and a little boy's name: ______ Vernon.  Yep, we did not have a boy's name picked out!  Joanne is my grandmother's name and Vernon is my husband's grandfather's name so the middle names were easy.  We agreed on Bailey early on in the pregnancy but could not find a boy's name that we both liked.  My husband liked Levi the entire pregnancy but I just couldn't wrap my head around it (It is a pair of jeans for goodness sake!).  But when the time came, Levi Vernon was the perfect fit. 

Now our time is spent taking care of this little man - and we couldn't be any happier!

As if having a new baby wasn't enough - I accepted a new position.  I will still be working at the same school, but instead of teaching first grade I will be the K-2 Title I Reading Teacher and I could not be more excited.  (So much for my creative blog name, huh?)  So at the end of the school year, my nine month pregnant self had to empty out my classroom and bring it all home.  Piece by piece, I brought it home and into the garage.  My husband then carried it all upstairs and put it into an extra bedroom, which I now refer to as "The Room of Disaster". 

Well, "The Room of Disaster" ate away at me.  I just could not stop thinking about the mess hiding behind that door.  So I decided to go through and organize it.  Yep, you should have seen me waddling in and out of that room.  I pulled everything out and put it into different piles in the hallway.  I had a donate pile (I can't believe I accumulated so many useless items!), a 'pack away in the attic' pile, a 'give to my teacher friend' pile and an 'I need this for next year pile'.  Then I waddled everything back into the room (except for the donate and give away piles) and organized it as much as I could.  Now I know that there is an organized mess behind the door and it is much easier to live with.

As for my new job, I will be working with Kindergarten, first and second graders on phonics skills.  I am excited for the new challenge and I can't wait to start creating materials to share with all of you!  I had hit a road block with my TpT store because I felt like I had run out of resources to create for the first grade Common Core Reading Standards.  Now I have a whole new realm of materials that I can make so be prepared for an overload of phonics materials! 

I think my favorite part about this new job so far is the fact that I can't work on anything this summer!  I don't know what my students will need because I don't even know which students I will be working with.  It has been such a relaxing summer and I know that I will start the new school year refreshed and ready for action!

Lots of new and exciting changes over here, huh?  For those of you have stuck with me through my lack of blogging over these past six months - thank you.  I can't wait for the new adventures that await me this year and look forward to sharing them (and all the new products I create) with you all.