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Saturday, June 16, 2012

Vacation, and a Freebie.

I needed my vacation.  I LOVED the beach...and enjoyed every minute.  I think that I needed that time away to just relax (boy that's hard to do). My kiddos enjoyed it more than I did! :)

This is the Corolla light house.  Last year when we went, it started lightning so we were unable to climb it. *Darn*  This year, we weren't as lucky we luckier---we got to climb all 214 steps....WOO BOY!!  SO glad I've been "pinnercising."

We took one of the neatest tours I've ever been on.  The tour of the Whalehead Club was amazing...even my little busy body boy enjoyed it. We had these little hand held that gaave an audio tour. There were about 15 different stops through the tour.   Here's a pic of the house (Whalehead Club).

 I had a "why didn't I think of that moment" while we were visiting the Wildlife Center.  I'm going to share it with you.  I used to use magnets when my classes would "fish" for words.  Check this out:

 They used a rod and bobber---but they used VELCRO!!  OH MY GOODNESS!!  The whole bobber was covered in velcro.  Here Madison is "fishing" for  a fish that she's to recognize (or use the book to help her determine the type).  They covered the fish in velcro strips as well....SOO much easier than my magnets that's for sure.

While at the Wildlife Center, we went to do a "Sound Sampler".  My daughter is much braver than I am.  First it was chilly, so the water was COLD.  Second, EWW!  She's barefoot in that muck!!  What about snakes?  EWWW!!  She is such a "nerd."  She will be something FABULOUS one day!!
We went over to Roanoke one day and went to Island Festival Park.  There we saw a Settlement Site, an American Indian Town, and the Elizabeth II.  It was very educational.  Again, even my busy body little dude liked it!

We went on several nature trails while there (in hopes of some good geocaches).  So pretty---I love the woods!!
If you have never been to Jockey's Ridge, I encourage you to go!!  BEAUTIFUL!!  Great view, nice place to fly kites. This was our 2nd visit to Jockey's Ridge.  I love this action shot of my kiddos! :)
I just thought I'd share where I've been the past couple of weeks.  I'm definitely enjoying my time with my kids.  But today I realized....EGADS!!  I've been out of school for 2 weeks already!  My summer is dwindling away----so if I'm not blogging, please don't think I've given up on this blog.  Just taking a break......as you can see, I'm enjoying my time! :) 

But even though I'm enjoying my time....Remember when I said I can't get school off my brain.  I tried....I really tried.  My poor husband (also a teacher) is going to KILL me if I don't try to enjoy summer some more.  The thing is...I AM enjoying summer.  I like thinking school.  I like thinking about my new students.  I like thinking about my classroom and organization.

Soooo since I was reflecting upon last school year, mind you, I have been out of first grade for 3 years, I forgot what it was like for some of the students at the beginning of first grade.  Some are still struggling with distinguishing between letters and numbers.  Some are reading at or above level.  Last year I think my centers at the beginning of the year were too difficult for 1/4 of my class. I made up this assessment this evening to use as a center or a quick assessment.  There is no recording sheet.  This is just a simple check.  You can click the picture below to grab your freebie.  I would love to hear what you think.  


  1. Thanks for sharing pictures of your vacation! It looks like a fun place to go... the beach is one of my favorite places! ...they are so hard to find in Oklahoma. :-) I love the idea of using velcro!

    1. It was our 2nd trip to the Outer Banks and we had a great time!! I would love to venture out west though! :)

  2. Looks like you had a great timr! I leave for vaca in a week and cant wait! !

    1. I hope you have a blast on vacation!! I'm ready to go on another! :)

  3. My family is in Corolla right now! Any suggestions of places they have to check out? :)

    Luckeyfrog's Lilypad

    1. I love Corolla, but there's not much there to do. If they have a 4x4, I would recommend driving to the end and checking out the wild horses. We did enjoy the climb and the view from the lighthouse. I would say go eat at the Outer Banks Brewing Station (in Kill Devil Hills) YUMMY! :)

  4. This freebie is absolutely adorable! I so wish my students were young enough to use this with! Thanks for sharing!
    Classroom Compulsion

  5. Thanks for the freebie!!


  6. As I was reading about your vacation, I was saying to myself, "I know that place, I know that place too." HA!! I live in NC too - in Vance County, about 45 miles north of Raleigh. Small world........

    1. I LOVE the Outer Banks. Last year was our first year visiting. There's something so peaceful about Corolla! :)

  7. Thanks for the letter/number sort. This is a cute and useful sort for the beginning of the year. Thanks!!

    1. You're welcome. I hope to use it as an assessment. It will help give me a basis on reading development.

  8. THANK-YOU...for admitting this:
    " The thing is...I AM enjoying summer. I like thinking school. I like thinking about my new students. I like thinking about my classroom and organization."
    I feel the same way...and I am always afriad to bring it up to my daughter and friends:)
    You have made it OK to think about something we love so much!!
    It's just that in summer we are can think about school in such a relaxed not in any hurry way!!
    I miss the east coast in the Spring and Summer... We live in Arizona now but I grew up in the EAST.
    Love your blog, and again thanks for giving me permission to "think school" even on our time off!

    1. :) My husband thinks that I think too much school. How can you think too much of something that you love? Sure, we all need a break now and again. My vacation starts as soon as school is over. Then I piddle around with school ideas the rest of summer. THEN I want another vacation before going back to school to get a fresh start all over again! ;) (Vacation meaning somewhere other than the house lol) ;) Thanks for stopping by! :)

  9. What a terrific freebie! But seriously, don't you think great teachers think about school all the time? If we really love teaching, then we can't stop thinking about the next great idea! People that love to run, think about their next run, people that love to craft, think about their next craft...can't help it, I think about school! :)
    Thank you for sharing this at TBA and linking up!
    Fern Smith’s Classroom Ideas!
    Fern Smith’s Pinterest Boards!

  10. Hi - I just love all of your ideas. I downloaded this a little awhile ago and just printed and laminated today. I realized there were some letters missing. Have you revised it? I really want to do this with my kiddos. Thank you so much.

    Sorting with Letters and Numbers - it has lions with apples. Do you know which one I mean?

  11. Hi,
    My name is Sarah and I'm with Dwellable. I was looking for blog posts about Corolla to share on our site and I came across your post...If you're open to it, drop me a line at Sarah(at)dwellable(dot)com.
    Hope to hear from you :)


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