Thursday, December 20, 2012

Wow! What a Party!

Merry Christmas all!  I am so loving my first day of Christmas break!  I survived the last week of school and can say that my Christmas party with my second grade babes yesterday was awesome!  My room mom did a FABULOUS job of organizing everything and the kids had a ball!  I have some pics here of my parent gifts that we made this year.  I can't take credit for of my second grade buddies was making this with her class and I just fell in love with them and had to make them.  Check out our Santa pots!
You need:     gold, black, and white pipe cleaners,
                   smaller pots (2 per child)
                   red and tan acrylic paint
                   google eyes
                   tiny pink balls for the nose
                   white foam sheet to cut out eyebrows and mustache
                   fluffy boa for cutting beard strips
                   tacky glue and hot glue gun
                   mints to fill the pots
They really were fun to make!  I wish you could have seen my classroom once we cut into those feather boas!  We had feathers flying EVERYWHERE!  The kids loved it!
I want to wish everyone a holiday filled with joy in your hearts!  Have a very Merry Christmas!   I will love my time off with my family but want to share a sample of a packet I hope to finish before the first of the year!  I am planning to make themed based (by the month) Common Core Daily Practice packets each month.  I am almost finished with my January packet that will include math and language arts practice sheets.  Watch for this soon and here is a sample page for you use with your students. 
 Again, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!-Yvonne

Friday, December 7, 2012

Gingerbread Fun and a Freebie!

Merry Christmas friends!  I hope you are enjoying your holiday season with your students.  Remember to check out Lory's Page for the 12 Days of Christmas giveaway that is going on.  This is such a fun time of the year for us to work with children but if you are like me you are getting ready for Christmas! I want to give you a chance to grab some Christmas activities at a great price to get you through these next two weeks and as you plan for January.  I am having a 20% off sale on all of my Christmas and winter items that will include my newest unit…Gingerbread Man for a Second Grade Classroom!  My students have loved reading different versions of gingerbread stories and completing the math and literacy activities in this packet.  Today we went to two Kindergarten classrooms and had a blast doing our reader's theatre of the Gingerbread Man.  So much fun!  Check out my preview and I hope it works for you. 
  One of my favorite activities that I do each year with my students is to make stained glass windows.  They are the EASIEST and cheapest Christmas craft idea that you can imagine.  Check out below how to do them.  The templates are in included in this packet.
I've also been working on getting our Christmas party organized.  One of the things I do each year as a gift for my kiddos is a Christmas Coupon Booklet.   They absolutely LOVE them and they are FREE!  If you'd like to use this idea just click here.  Have a wonderful weekend friends!-Yvonne :)

Friday, November 30, 2012

Attention 2nd Grade Teachers...12 Days of Christmas FREEBIES

Merry Christmas!
  I am so excited!  Lory Evans from Lory's Page and Amy Lemons from Step Into Second Grade have asked me to join in on an exciting Christmas giveaway with a group of amazing 2nd grade bloggers!
We are thrilled to announce that beginning December 1st (tomorrow), 12 of us bloggers will wish 12 lucky teachers a very Merry Christmas!!!
Listed below are some of the 12 bloggers that have chosen their favorite unit to give away... not once... but 12 times... for 12 days... to 12 teachers!
That's right... you might win 12 different units created by these wonderful ladies to use in your classroom during the 2013 school year.

We are so grateful for our blog-ships and we want to thank our followers and hopefully develop new blog-ships for the upcoming year.

December 1st is Saturday... we will accept entries bright and early... then announce     the December 1st winner at 10:00 PM Saturday night.
We'll start over December 2nd and continue through the 12th of December.
All you'll need to do is leave a bit of cheer with your email each day on Lory's Page.

Be sure to stop by and follow these amazing blogs... they are always sharing terrific 2nd grade ideas and many freebies.

See you Saturday!!!

Savvy in Second
Can't wait till tomorrow! Have a great Friday night friends!-Yvonne

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Cyber Monday Plus Tuesday TpT Sale!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!  I am off to the grocery store (YES... on Wednesday the day before Thanksgiving) to tackle the crowds and hope everything is not sold out!  Before I head out I wanted to tell you about a great sale coming up on TpT!  Monday and Tuesday (Nov. 26th and 27th) all of the items in my store will be 20% off and TpT will offer an additional discount on sale prices!  Just enter the code CMT12 and you could buy your teaching packets up to 28% off!  I wanted to give you plenty of time to shop over your Thanksgiving break to fill your shopping carts!  To celebrate the sale I've created a FREEBIE Christmas center...Christmas Penguin Prefix or Suffix Sort!  It is a center similar to the those in my new Merry Christmas Common Core Math and Literacy Centers.  I'd love for you to click on the pictures below to preview my centers along with some of my other Christmas fun activities.   I want to say thanks to Michelle (3 AM Teacher) for her great button above advertising our TpT sale!  Have a great holiday and enjoy your days off from school!-Yvonne

Check out some of these great deals from these amazing teachers as well!  
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!-Yvonne

Monday, November 12, 2012

Color Coding for Language Arts!

Hi friends!  Just many of you have ever tried "color coding" your language arts instruction?  I just finished my newest packet (click here to see it) and couldn't wait to share it with you all! What do I mean by color coding? Well, each student has a complete set of colored pencils that they use to "code" their language arts skills and parts of speech in their writings, class chart stories, and sentences.
When I started teaching I was fortunate enough to be with a very energetic mentor teacher.  Whew...she was wide open "wild" with the energy of a wild child!  I'll never forget her (really...she could have been a stand-up comedian).  She taught first grade and one of her daily routines was to do a morning "chart story" and act it out with her students.  I was amazed at how well this routine of "clapping our ending marks" and "saluting our capital letters" helped our students retain the skills.  I followed her lead and used this technique when I started teaching and taught first grade.  My students LOVED this idea of acting out their grammar skills and following charts for coding their nouns, verbs, adjectives, and more!  Here is a sneak peak of my packet...Language Arts Code, Count, and Tally Tickets based on the same idea but designed to follow Common Core Standards:

 There are sentences and language prompts coded with the CCSS standards.  Each ticket has a writing prompt for students to write in their journals! 

On another note, I've been finishing up my fall conferences and I have LOVED using my Common Core Notebooks with my students!  I have to brag on my students for their first "student-led conferences" and their organizational skills.  I've loved hearing my students share with their parents their evidence of learning the standards and skills checklists. has made conferences so much easier!!! Yes, it was work at the beginning to train the kids with the notebooks but now it is all worth it!  They love writing new standards down on recording forms and filing work samples as evidence.

We are working now on goal setting and weekly reflection tickets.  My students are very familiar with goal tickets because we use them with our Common Core notebooks but I would like to try a weekly reflection/goal sheet.  I found this freebie I really like from some fabulous teachers at "Fab in Fourth" on TpT!  Check out their "Week at a Glance" sheet available for us all to use!  I am starting this with my kiddos this week and hope it will help them with goal setting and reflection of learning for each week in Reading, Math, and Science/Social Studies.  I'll keep you posted and let you know how our "week at a glance" reflection is going.  Thanks to the ladies at Fab in Fourth! Thanks so much friends and have a great week!-Yvonne :)

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Class Pics and a Freebie!

Hi friends!  Wow...just finished my formal observation (whew!!!)...glad that is over with!  Now, I can relax and enjoy Halloween with my kids.  I wanted to share some of the class pics that I've taken and share some cool ideas I've been trying out this school year!
My formal observation was on Measurement and Data for Second Grade.  What a fun unit to teach this time of the year!  I made a cute little graphing center to support my unit if you'd like it.  Click here or on the picture below if you'd like my Fun Fall Graphing center!

If you haven't seen Shelley Gray's Early Finisher's Board then you seriously need to check it out.  I started using it about three weeks ago and my students LOVE it!  It is a blessing to have in your classroom.  It helps me when I am teaching reading groups and need something "extra" for my other students to do when finished with centers and morning work.  
Here are pictures of my board.  Click on the pics to link to her store.  Changing skills every two weeks seems to go quickly.  Well worth it!   Thanks Shelley!

Bucket tickets are great for positive discipline and class community building.  I have so enjoyed using Mel D's Bucket Filler activity tickets from her Bucket Filler starter kit.  I read the books she suggested and practiced how to give appropriate comments to "Fill Buckets" with my students..   We have our own student buckets in a shoe/pocket chart in the room.  My students are enjoying using Mel's tickets to compliment/fill other people's buckets.  Great idea Mel!  Click on the picture to see Mel's free packet.
I think my absolute favorite classroom incentive/management idea for this year so far is our class...Cookie Compliments and Brownie Points board!  I saw this idea on Jessica Heeren's blog...Mrs. Heeren's Happenings.  Great idea!  I first tried to adhere/glue a lightweight cookie pan to my wall and realized that it would not stay.  It kept falling off the wall.  I then decided to have UPS make me a laminated cookie pan (tagboard) and it worked beautifully!  My students are constructing arrays of cookies for class compliments and brags. Once our cookie sheets are full, we vote on a class celebration!  Jessica has given us all a great resource to use here for class management.

Overall, we are having a blast learning how to fill each others' buckets and giving class compliments.  I hope you can use these resources.   

Have a wonderful week!-Yvonne Dixon

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Fairy Tale Fun!

Hi friends!  Wow... I've been so busy teaching my fairy tales unit that I haven't had a chance to blog and share with you all these past three weeks!  Where has September gone?  Sorry I've been MIA here on Sassy in Second!  
This is the first year in a LONG time I've taught fairy tales and I must say, I had a BLAST!  The kids loved it! 
Last year my second grade team and I had talked about putting together a fairy tale unit to try out this year.  It was a goal of mine to come up with activities that we all could use!  I've created a few packets you might like to have!  Click here if you'd like a free copy of... Jack and the Beanstalk Story Retell and Sequencing!  It is much like the Goldilocks and the Three Bears sequencing activity in my Folktales, Fairy Tales, and Fables for a Second Grade Classroom.  We all enjoyed using them and I hope you will also.  Check both of them out below.

For some math differentiation and additional practice with place value skills, I also created my...Big Bad Wolf Base Ten Tiered Math Tub!  If you like using tiered tubs then this might be one for you. 
This was a fun activity because we had used Jen Ross' (The Teacher's Cauldron) writing center activity for...Who is the Wolf?  The kids looked for fairy tales and fables that had a wolf as the villain in the story!  These tiered tubs have three levels using adorable pics from The Three Little Pigs, Little Red Riding Hood, and The Boy Who Cried Wolf!  Check out Jen's wolf writing activity from her Three Little Pigs Math and Literacy Centers!
I began to make my Folktales, Fairy Tales, and Fables for a Second Grade Classroom by looking at the CCSS for second grade.  I narrowed in on some focus standards and created this parent letter to kick off the unit.  I then created teaching webs to help with integration of other subjects.
Here are just a few of the amazing resources out there on the web!  Wow!!!  I've said it before and I'll say it again... new teachers starting today are so blessed to have so many teaching resources at their fingertips.  When I started teaching all we had were resource books and teacher supply stores!!!
Here are a few of the great links for you to use when teaching fables, fairy tales, or folktales!  

I decided to make a three week unit beginning with fairy tales and concluding with comparison of folktales from different cultures.  Check out what all is included! 
I hope you will consider teaching fairy tales no matter what grade you teach!  I learned from this unit that you can make your instruction meet the needs of all ages!  Thanks so much friends!-Yvonne :)