10 Thankful Trees You Can Make Over Thanksgiving Break From School

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10 Thankful Tree Ideas for the Whole Family..

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This post may contain affiliate links at NO cost to you.  Please read my disclosure page. Should you decide to purchase from any of the links provided, my little family will greatly appreciate it!

www.educents.com

Welcome back to what has become a series about 7 Days of Gratitude and Resources to Teach Kids!

10 Thankful Trees for the Whole Family

Our little family is learning we have more to be thankful for this Thanksgiving than ever before.

Our area has been hit with wild fires.  The smoke in the air is has so badly polluted the mountains in NC that we are at a code red for air quality.  The surrounding counties have been ablaze and we are VERY GRATEFUL of all the fire fighters out there this Holiday keeping us safe in our homes!!

I thought it would be fun to try continuing learning about gratitude with a homemade Thankful Tree.  I’ve seen them shared at my favorite blogs and after getting an excited “Yes!” from PJ, the vote was in.

 

Day 2 The Good Talk About Feelings and Gratitude

The time we spent crafting our thankful tree collecting branches on a nature walk and writing thoughts of gratitude has really helped PJ obtain a deeper sense of what gratitude is all about.  I hope your family can find the value in making a thankful tree not to mention the beauty it brings to your living room!

What You Will Need

  • Branches from a tree or bush
  • Paint brush and White Paint
  • Sand, rocks, stones or pinecones to hold the branches in place
  • A coffee container or Vase to put the branches in
  • Scissors, a pen, and Free Leaf Writing Printable

We went on a nice walk skipping over rocks of our river to collect branches that were just right to put in our vase.  The conversation was more of about how we both feel when we appreciate what others say to us.  I thought it would be a good starting point to talk with PJ about friends who make a point to say hello to us no matter how busy they are. We were keeping it simple talking about compliments, patience, and emotions when we found the perfect tree branch.

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It’s leaves were almost too pretty to remove from the branch but PJ did that.  And we talked some more.  This time we talked about returning the feeling of gratitude to those PEOPLE who helped us feel grateful that they were simply our friends.  

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Picking the leaves off the big branch, trimming, and dividing the branch took 40 minutes.  It was enough time to talk about what feelings we feel when we are grateful for those special people in our lives.  There’s a lot of emotions that we can show to express a grateful attitude you know! We covered as many as we could think of and what each emotion may look like to people we wanted to thank.  In the mix of our conversation we talked about what we could say to express our gratitude.  

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To wrap up this day, we took turns acting out simple compliment, gestures, and facial expression “RETURNS” for those moments of gratitude.  The role play helped him connect good manners with others feelings.  Outwardly showing appreciation even when you don’t feel like it will give you an attitude of gratitude.  He was getting the idea that gratitude can be contagious!

That night we re-read the books about giving thanks for loved ones, simple things in life, and an attitude of gratitude from Day 1.

Day 3  A Tree That Blooms in Fall

PJ was READY for the really fun stuff the next morning!   He started Painting the branches white with a paint brush.  He tried hard to paint every tiny stem but the splotched effect turned out to be a masterpiece!

imageimageWhile we let the paint dry, we cut out the free leave writing printable.  Then, I asked to write on the leaves what he was thankful for.

This time his list include people, places, and everyday things (like his favorite flavored water and music).  Much different than Day 1!  

When the paint dried, sand from his sand box was added to a glass vase along with the painted branches.  You can be as creative as you want here.  I’ve seen cans, glass vases, tissue boxes,  and many beautiful fillings used to createThankful Trees.  And I’ll share a list at the end of this post.

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We punched a hole in each leaf and used string to hang it on the Thankful Tree.

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He was excited that his leaf would be at the tip top of the tree!

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Printable leaves that were used for our tree can be found at

Homeschool Den – http://www.homeschoolden.com/2016/11/20/I-am-thankful-writin-paper-and-other-thanksgiving-freebies/

The Thankful Tree is a family activity we plan on making tradition.  If you like this tree you may like these other Thankful Tree ideas.

More Thankful Tree Ideas From Awesome Bloggers

So sorry I had to type my links in and edit!  My site wasn’t allowing me to use links but I’m I’m top of it!!

 

Happy Thanksgiving 🙂

Crystal 

www.educents.com

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7 Days of Gratitude and Resources to Teach Kids

www.educents.com

7 Days of Gratitude and Resources to Teach..

7 Days of Gratitude and Resources to teach kids

 

 

 

This post may contain affiliate links.  Please read my discloser page.  Links are provided for you convenience at no cost to you. However, your purchase from any of my links is greatly appreciated by our little family!

Teaching my son gratitude is one of my top priorities this year.  Thankfully, there is an aboundance of resources out there this Thanksgiving!

And its not that I don’t think he doesnt know what being truly Thankful feels like.  

Rather,  I wondered how well he could explain what being thankful IS.  So, I asked him and he told me a list of all his favorite toys and activities.  Close but not what a mom wants her child to remember most about gratitude.  He did try:)

That afternoon we watched videos of kids answering questions like “What are you thankful for?” and looked up Graditude Activites for children.  I asked more questions trying to reword them so that he could give better answers.  I could tell we needed to work on connecting the feelings and emotions of being thankful with acts Gratitude, too.

 

Day 1 Making Connections

Books are one sure fire way to connect with PJ.  So, we headed to the library to check out books about Gratitude.  That night we read 3 great books!

 

Books to teach Gratitude

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Art Garfunkle’s song was made into a children’s story book here.  We read the words and were able to talk about so many other words that describe being truly grateful.  This book tells how grateful thoughts can make you feel happier than keeping score of  what you want.

 

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“Thank You, Thanksgiving” is a simple story about a little girl’s Thanksgiving Day.  She makes a trip to the grocery store pointing out all the simple things we take for granted from day to day like clouds, wild animals, warm clothing, and even whipped cream!  It was perfect for reminding us to be grateful of the simple things in life.

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“A Thanksgiving Wish” by Michael Rosen was sniff* sad.  I’m glad we read this together because it covered another topic I’ve been wanting to teach PJ about and that was grieving the loss of a family member.  How many of us miss a lost loved one during the holidays??  Perfect book for reflecting upon how grateful we should be for family!

For a list of more helpful books…

10 Gratitude and Thanksgiving books for Preschoolers Totschooling.net

 

Teachers first give yourself the gift of gratitude with 35 Ways to Celebrate Your Children ABountiful Love

More Ideas to help Teach Kids Gratitude..

 

Thank you for reading!!

Crystal 🙂

www.educents.com

Great Blogs I Share With:

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Practical Mom

Meaningful Gift Giving

 

Meaningful gift giving

This post contains affiliates links at NO cost to you.  Should you decide to help support our little family by purchasing from the links provided, we would be so very grateful!  For more info about this, visit my disclosure and privacy page.  Thank you!!

 

I can’t believe it, but the holiday shopping season is upon us: I’m seeing holiday deals in my inbox already and it’s not even November! A lot of you might agree that holiday gift giving has lost some of what made it special in the past, and the expectation of material goods has gotten out of hand. Just google Walmart + Black Friday + injury for some of the worst.

But despite negative news, there is something really special about getting together and giving loved ones gifts that have meaning. So before you get anything to just check someone off your to-do list, take a moment to model thoughtful giving for your children, family and community. Give them a gift that will last.

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Experiences create the memories that bond us.

Consider taking loved ones on a local adventure, a music show, committing to an exercise routine with the kids , learning a family recipe , or even just setting up time for a special day with just the two of you. This can be inexpensive for your pocketbook, and rich in meaning.

Education is also a gift that lasts a lifetime.

For youngsters in your life, how about a set of blocks for your little engineer, science experiments they can do with friends and have a sleep over.  How about teaching a love for music?  Try gifting a product that will start by building on the classics.  

Whatever their passion as a young learner, stoke those coals!!

Your gift to them could not only last a lifetime, but positively influence their community!

Make sure you don’t overpay – if you’re new to Educents.com you can get $10 off your first order with my referral link:  #Thankfulmama

 

Thank you for reading!

Crystal 🙂

Magic School Bus Costume & MORE Fun

Magic School Bus Costume & more

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This post contains affiliate links..

Do the kids love The Magic School Bus TV series??  Oh, my son does!!  So much so, we made a costume last year for “Favorite book Character Day” at his school.

With Halloween coming up (and this  Amazing, Hands-on, Year long,  Science Journey Deal!) I thought it would be a great time to share how we made my sons Magic School Bus costume.

For All the kids that love The Magic School Bus….and parents, too!

What you need…

  • Several pieces of white card stock
  • 2 Bounty card board boxes
  • 1 Milk cardboard box
  • 4 pizza box rounds
  • 2 blue pieces of construction paper
  • 1 red piece of construction paper
  • 2 yellow rectangular craft foam pieces with sticky back
  • Lots of yellow acrylic paint from Micheals- we used 2 16 oz bottles
  • A black marker
  • Black paint

 

ALMOST ALL OF THE SUPPLIES can be found  at home and at your local BI LO, Winn Dixie, or Harveys Grocery.   Just ask them for Bounty paper towel roll boxes and a milk box that would hold 4 gallons of milk.

To get started, I trimmed 1 Bounty box about 3/4 from the top.  Then, WE painted all 3 boxes yellow and let them dry over night.  Save the trimmed portion!!

Magic School Bus Costume & More Fun

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You don’t need to paint 1 side of the milk box (the side with the handle) because this side will be glued to the front of a Bounty box.

Magic School Bus Costume & More

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We painted a tire on 4 pizza rounds.

Magic School Bus Costume & More

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I turned the two Bounty boxes on their sides and glued them together (tucked one inside the other a tad bit.) Let them dry.  And cut a rectangular hole in the top and bottom where PJ would stand inside.

Magic School Bus & More

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I glued the smaller box to one end of the Magic School Bus body and PJ held it in place to dry.

We hand drew and cut out all the features like the mouth which was two white pieces of card stock and this one pattern drawn on both pieces.

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Eyes: larger circles on white card stock with the smaller circles on blue card stock

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Once the main design for the Magic School bus was together we glued on the cardboard pizza round wheels.  Two wheels went on both sides of the larger boxes and two on both sides of the smaller front box of the bus.

I used the remaining yellow painted larger box ( the saved portion that was trimmed from the top of one Bounty box) to cut and glue fenders half way around the front wheels.

PJ had a lot of fun gluing the rest of the features on the bus:  a blue school bus sign, a white poster board side door and front wind shield with yellow strip down the center, the mouth, and eyes.

Magic School Bus Costume & More

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I used two white pieces of cardstock taped together and a ruler with black maker to make the grill. It was not a fancy design!  PJ helped me glue it to the front smaller box.

Magic School Bus Costume &More

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We added windows and shaded them with black marker to the other side. Again, just white card stock glued to the bus.

PJ cut out and glued the stop sign to the same side.  He also painted the black bumper on the rear and attached sticky back yellow foam above the top front red lights.

Magic School Bus Costume &More

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Batman riding the Magic School Bus!!

You and your kids can get creative with the features.  You also may want to hot glue two straps to the inside of the costume so they don’t need to carry it around.  Maybe criss cross the straps over you childs shoulders.  In hind sight, I was wishing I had thought to do that!

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Now for MORE Fun!!!

Take a ride on the Magic School Bus!

The Magic School Bus Science Club is a 12- month science kit subscription based on the award-winning series, The Magic School Bus. If you haven’t heard about the series before, each of the stories center on the antics of a frizzy-red haired fictional elementary school teacher named Mrs. frizzle.  She and her class  board a “magic school bus” to take them on field trips to impossible locations….. the solar system, clouds, the past, and inside the human body. This story-based learning took the science scene by storm in the 90’s.

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But it’s the 2000s!!

 

 

The kit subscription takes it to the next level with Hands On learning that ties to all on the stories!  also HALF OFF for a limited time!!!!!

The kits include experiments related to Volcanoes, Weather, Water, Fossils, Bacteria and Fungi, Star and Planets, and the weather, which, given recent events I want to brush up on, too.

One experiment I’ve been really excited to try is the Volcano Kit! The kit comes with a small volcanic rock, a pumice stone, sheets of paper, black paint, paint brush, a magnifying glass all to build a volcano.

And there are so MANY MORE Experiments!! Think of a sibling science club coming to life in your home – or friends bonding over making volcanoes explode, and learning all about how the human body works! Getting kids excited about STEM learning is exciting stuff. And it’s especially exciting because it’s 50% OFF for a LIMITED time!

Here’s the run down:

 

The Magic School Bus

 

 

The 12 Themes for activities and experiments that are sent to your doorstep, monthly include:

  • Detailed, extensive 12-page colorful manual that is full of experiments and topic information
  • Each manual was based on the award winning Magic School Bus Book (and TV) series
  • A handy dandy cheat sheet for adults, so you can lead the way with no background in science (shhh.. I always preferred reading…)
  • Tools and instructions for a at least 7 interactive experiments per month
  • Online Clubhouse for further exploration on each package topic (take advantage of this!!)
  • Certificate of Completion – a great way to reinforce learning and accomplishments

USE CODE CANDYCORN for free shipping!!!

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Thank you for reading!

Crystal 🙂

 

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10s Target Practice

Practice Make Perfect….

10s target Practice

There’s really not a better way to have fun memorizing math drills than to do so outside…

 

We both love the break from repetivite flash cards (however much he needs them)!  Plus, my son gets to MOVE until his heart is content.

 

If you have a little move to think-er too, I think you will enjoy doing this basic math activity.  

I started by drawing a target pattern on the pavement.  I used a large piece of chalk attached to a long poly rope. PJ held the rope in place while I drew the bullseye for the center.  There’s no picture because we were both engaged in drawing.  Team PJ:) -but here you can see the finished target.

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Using a rope with the end tied to our chalk allowed us to draw neat evenly spaced circles for his target. We just kept lengthening the rope by 1 1/2 feet before drawing a new (larger) circle.  

I added the numbers that were divisible by 10 up to 50 and he helped me COUNT BY TEN’S a few times.

All that was left to do was fill some balloons with water!

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I brought out his easel to practice ADDITION.  

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We took turns throwing water balloons at the target and adding our scores to the board.

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The first one to reach 100 was the winner!

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More ways to use this activity…

Count by 2’s, 5’s, and other numbers

Use single, double, or triple digit numbers for addition practice

Use only numbers that add to make 10.  The first to make 10 five times wins!

Each player starts out with a score of 100, then subtracts numbers from the target circle that is hit.  Player that reaches zero first is the winner.

 

 

Have Fun!!

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Sites I share with:

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“Mrs.AOK,

 

Hip Homeschool Moms

 

Thank you for reading!

Crystal 🙂

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August is just around the corner.  Get your planning on HERE, too!  More places PJ and I both like to choose ideas from.

 

The Tower That Won’t Topple- relentlesslyfundeceptivelyeducational.com

11 Hundreds Charts Activities- 123homeschool4me.com

A Fin-tatstic Boys Shark Party- spaceshipsandlaserbeams.com

Free Digraph Sort and Find- playdoughtoplato.com

Football Make Ten Game- mathgeekmama.com 

Wiggle your Toes Week: Sibling Footprint Canvas- craftymorning.com

The Green Zone Social Skills Game- image

 

Living Montessori Now

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Better Screen Time With Learning Apps

Learning apps are a far better use of screen time!

 

 

 

Whether you love it or hate it or don’t know what it is Pokemon Go is one of the most popular apps in the world right now. Here are some alternatives created intentionally to foster learning, making them a truly  worthwhile time investment.  For fun, and since Pokemon’s from Japan, I’ll count the apps in Japanese – Ichi, Ni, San, Go!

 

 

 

 

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Ichi (One):  Have story time anywhere with the FarFaria App.

You will like this app because kids can READ quietly and be entertained wherever they are.  It also gives the entire family access to thousands of books on iPad, kindle, phone, ext. so there are options for all ages! Turn screen time into story time with this “Netflix for Children’s BOOK” app.  Its great to be able to save books to the app so they can read offline anywhere!!

Great for: Ages 2-9

Cost: For a limited time, $19.99 (Save $20!)

 

 

 

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Ni (Two): Improve reading skills with Hooked On Phonics app.

Do your kids love Hooked On Phonics?

Theyve really brought this time-honored system to the big league with this amazing app.  It has educational games to keep kids at home or on the phone anywhere.  I love that it syncs children’s progress to all devices –  –So, if dad is working night shift he is kept up with PJ’s progress.  And if you don’t have the app around you can just download the app, sign, in, and have kids pick up right where they left off.  Seamless.

Great for: Ages 2-8

Cost: For a limited time, $29.99 (Save 20$)

 

 

 

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San (Three):  Learn coding skills with the brower-based Learn to Mod program.

Do your kids love video games and winning badges?  Use that to get them coding!  The Learn to Mod program is a browser-based software that teaches kids how to “mod” Minecraft with both Blockly and Javascript (neither of which I understand, but there you have it).  The program includes hundreds of puzzles, video lessons, and quizzes that get kids learning this impressive skill while having fun.  The badges keep them coming back for more!

Great forAges 7-13

Cost: $29.99

 

 

 

imageGo! (Four): Need help with homework?  Use the GradeSlam app and ask a tutor!!

Need help helping with homework??  Are you strapped for time to help with homework?  There is an app for that, too! GrandSlam provides 24/7 tutoring in all subject’s to students in middle and high school, as well as, college.  With their award winning chat-based tutoring platform, your kids can access tutors anytime they need.  This is the perfect supplement for any subject matter beyond your scope, busy spells, and for when kids head off to college.  

Great for: upper school to college ages, tougher subjects

Cost: For a limited time, get a whole year for  $99 (save) $81!)

 

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I hope I’ve expanded your DIGITAL horizons beyond Pokemon Go today!  What apps do your kids use?  Comment below.  I’d love to hear about it!

 

 

 

Thanks for reading!

Crystal 🙂

 

TEACHER APPRECIATION 10,000 Give Away!!!

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Teacher Appreciation

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                      GIVE AWAY From Educents!!!!

 

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This post contains affiliate links…

 

 

To celebrate Teacher Appreciation month, Educents, First Grade, S&S Worldwide and the Sellers of Educents have partnered to give educators funding for their dream classrooms. The 7 educators with the most votes will win a combined $10,000! Any educator is eligible to win – teachers, homeschoolers, parents, and school administrators.

 

How to Win

Educators get pretty creative when it comes to raising money to cover expenses for classroom supplies. Many host bake sales, ask the community for second-hand supplies, or pay out of their own pockets. However, there’s a new way to get money for your classroom… and it doesn’t include raiding the aisles of your local dollar store.

It’s easy to enter to win the Educents Teacher Appreciation Giveaway, and it still requires a little creativity (see Step 3).

Step 1: Save up to $5,000 in products for your dream classroom in your Educents wishlist.

Step 2: Click “Enter to Win” on your wishlist page and create your voting profile.

Step 3: Share with your friends, family and community and ask them to vote for you every day until May 6. This is your opportunity to get creative – how will you share your wishlist, and how will you involve your community to vote for you??

Any educator is eligible to win – teachers, homeschoolers, and school administrators. Ready to get started?

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This is a little preview of what my amazing Educents Dream List for homeschool looks like so far!  Take a Peek.  Theses products are all our learning needs wrapped into one BIG list.   I had so much fun picking my dream supplies and filling my cart as if I were taking these things home.  Imagine if I did win them!  Boy would we have a blast trying out new products never to have a dull moment on his education.   Well you could win too.  Just follow the steps above.

And…If you don’t have a list of your own vote for me and PJ!!!!!!!!!!!!

I will come back to add my own list link when I’m finished adding products. Yay!

In the meantime, don’t forget to sign up at Educents (FREE) to download the freebies at the end of this post.

 

 

 

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Hands on science!

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The kit above has the following included!  We could spend weeks incorporating this in all subjects!

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Going Green:  In this kit my student will learn about the water cycle, make a composting tube, learn about the three R’s, recycle paper to make shapes, help learn how to help save the planet!

 

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Solar Kit: I know he would  really like to discover carbon dioxide with solar experiments.  This kit makes everything solar simple and hands on! 

 

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Nature Kit:  We love ANTs amd all things animal here.  BUT we haven’t learned about animal tracks or made our own ant farm.  That would be “so Cool!” ~ PJ

 

 

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These two Simple Machine K’Nex Builder Kits would surely give PJ a great leg up in testing not to mention hours of fun!!

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I’d love to have this Lego Simple Machines kit, too!

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My wish list for our studies will always include printable s!  And how to store them?!


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More Printables…

These two novel studies are above Pjs reading level But they are amoungst my favorite upper elementary school books!!  You can bet I will be the first person to read these to him!  

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Books, books, and more books!  He loves books!  I enjoy reading as well but could really stand to amp up  his curriculum sources!!

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Wow!  Is this first grade science reader set a great deal!!!

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Visuals for my Visual thinker…

 

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Growing and learning to be independent thinkers is something every parent and educator wants for a child  they are instructing..

 

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Here are a few other entries I love – Vote for your

 

 

favorite!

 

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Vote for me!!

 

“Vote for me because I LOVE teaching. I have a wonderful class that is full of spirit and who loves to learn. I will be putting all my dream items to the end of the year lessons and summer school lessons.” -Diana R.

“I am a homeschooling mom of 4 children, and one baby on the way! We live on only my husband salary. I would love to create a dream classroom for them.” – Gina H.

 

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Thank you for reading!!

Crystal :).              

 

Freebies For The Teacher…..

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