I'm so excited to be participating in The Magical Product Swap!


This is such a cool idea!  If you haven't seen past product swaps, here's how it works...

The awesome Jessica Stanford matches two bloggers up to switch a product from their TPT Store.  Each blogger gets to test out the product in their own classroom, and review it right here on their blog!

I was so fortunate to be matched up with Kelly at Beg Borrow Steal.  If you don't already know her, she is an amazing kindergarten teacher with an even more amazing blog!  Her blog was one of the first that I started following.  She is definitely worth checking out!

Today I am reviewing Kelly's Out of This World Math and Literacy Packet.  This packet includes six centers (three literacy centers and three math centers).

We spent yesterday afternoon exploring these out-of-this-world centers.  My firsties had a BLAST!  This was a great review of skills we've taught this year in first grade.  I divided my class into six groups, and partnered them up within their groups to complete each center.  Check us out!!!

Astronomical ABC Order


Sunsational Contractions


Flying Fact Families
(not sure how this is the only pic I ended up with of this one, oops!)

Outer-Space Skip Counting

Universal Sum Matching Game


Rocketing Read the Room


When we were done, I asked my first graders what activity they liked best, and why.  EVERY hand shot up!  Here's a few things they had to say...

"I liked the ABC order because the pictures helped me to read the words."

"I liked the Fact Families because we have been practicing them and I'm really good at them."

"I liked the Skip Counting because I got to count by 2's."

And the (almost) unanimous fan favorite... Rocketing Read the Room!  

"I liked the Read the Room because I got to go around with my friends and find the hidden words."

They seriously could NOT get enough of the read-the-room activity.  We have not done any read-the-room activities this year (shame on me!), but I can clearly see that I will be incorporating this popular activity more regularly into my classroom.

Thanks Kelly for these outstanding activities!!  You can find the Out of This World Math and Literacy Packet and many other fantastic products in Kelly's TPT Store.

Want to see what product of mine Kelly reviewed?  Hop on over to her blog and check it out!

Winner, Winner!  Congrats to Amy M. for winning my 100 Follower Giveaway!  Check your email... your prizes will be coming your way!

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Once again, thank you to ALL my followers.  You are truly appreciated!

In other news, I've been working hard on this lil beauty...

Any activities or printables you would like to see in this pack?

TGIF!!!  I'm linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching to share my Five for Friday (five random things that happened during the week.)  And, I'm a "Five for Friday" first timer, woohoo!

We had a BUSY week back after Spring Break... and it felt like it lasted FOREVER!

1.  Report Cards, BLECH.
I meant to do these over spring break (yeah right).  Since I didn't even look at them during break I had a long way to go on Monday.  Luckily for me I have a fantastic student teacher right now.  I snuck in some report card time while she was teaching (SHHH, don't tell).

2.  Spring Planting
Though we are just barely seeing signs of spring in Upstate NY, it was time to plant our seeds.  We spent all week learning about the parts of a plant and their jobs, as well as the plant life cycle.  Then we planted some Nasturtiums.  We hope they bloom in time for Mother's Day!

3.  All About Books
This week we started our "All About" books.  I picked up this FANTASTIC unit from Susan Moran at T.G.I.F.  I've blogged about her amazing writing units before and I'm so psyched to start this unit!  My firsties are going crazy over it, and we just started on Thursday.  Yesterday they took a book walk to look at many different animals, and then narrowed their focus to one animal to write about.  Today we began reading and writing facts about our animals.  I think this has the potential to be my favorite writing unit to date!

4.  I have been MISSING my gorgeous nieces this week.  I was lucky enough to get this adorable pic sent to me by my sister.  One of many pictures and videos that will hold me over until I get to see them again (13 days, but who's counting?!).

5.  Spring Wardrobe
I took some time this week to GUT my closet!  I have a ginormous stack of clothes ready to go to good will.  So, of course, I needed to SHOP and refill my empty closet.  I'm far too embarrassed to post a picture of all my loot.  That would be gluttonous, haha.
Instead I will post a picture of the super cute matching outfits I bought for my nieces, and a new pair of sandals to bring me into spring.
(Dear Spring:  I am ready for you.  Please come soon.  Love, Colleen)

Just a reminder... my 100 Followers Giveaway ends this Saturday night.  Get those entries in to win some fabulous prizes from some amazing bloggers!
{CLICK HERE} to Enter

I have hit the magic 100... followers that is!  I am SO EXCITED to have reached this blogging milestone!  I never thought I'd have 100 people who are interested in what I have to share about teaching.  I sincerely THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart for following my teaching journey.

To reward my Fun and Fearless Followers... A GIVEAWAY!  I have some fantastic bloggy friends that are contributing some great prizes for this giveaway.  If you don't already follow their blogs, be sure to check them out!

(Graphics by Mrs. D's Firsties and Aisne's Creations)

This giveaway will end Saturday night... so get those entries in.  Good Luck!

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I am currently on SPRING BREAK, woohoo!  This week I am spending my spring break in Chicago with my parents while we visit my sister, brother-in-law, and TWO nieces!

Snuggle Time!

My beautiful niece Hailey Josephine was born on March 27th.  Our family is so excited to welcome our new member.  She is absolutely precious and we are so blessed to be able to spend her first week together.  We are having so much fun snuggling lil Hailey.  My niece Taylor (22 months) has been an absolute riot.  I haven't seen her since Christmas and she has grown so much.  She has us laughing all day long.  Wish I could be here longer, but I'm enjoying every minute that I can while I'm here!

With all this fun I hope to carve out a little bit of time (and I do mean a LITTLE) to catch up on some schoolwork.  We shall see if that really happens, haha!

My advice is to find a career that makes you truly happy.  Teaching was not my first career.  I spent about four year in advertising prior to teaching.  Though I enjoyed advertising, I was never truly happy there.  Teaching is where I found my niche, particularly first grade.  I can't imagine doing anything else.  I also can't imagine going to a job everyday that I did not love.  If you aren't happy, CHANGE IT!

Go link up with Farley at Oh' Boy 4th Grade and tell me what you are currently up to.

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