Sunday, May 3, 2015

Happy Teacher Appreciation Week Eve!

Happy Teacher Appreciation Week Eve!

Teachers are some of the hardest working, caring, and passionate people I know. You never hear a teacher say, "I'm in this for the money, fame, and fortune".  Teachers teach because they have a passion for learning, sharing, and changing lives one lesson at a time.

So this week, my fellow teachers, is about you! Let's celebrate those little victories that never find their way onto a standardized test, like that one student who actually grabbed a copy of your favorite read aloud book for some quiet reading at their desk!

This week, in honor of you, I've joined forces with some of your favorite bloggers and teacher companies to bring you the 2nd Annual We {HEART} Teachers Event!

You thought last year was good... wait 'til you see what we've got for you this year!

This event will run from Monday, May 4th through Friday, May 8th and I promise you won't want to miss it any second of it!

Over 40 of your favorite teacher bloggers and teacher companies have joined up to bring you some amazing prizes, freebies, and deals!

 All my FAVES!

Here's a peek at what's up for grabs this week!

 I want that Alex and Ani bracelet!

 Get your shop on!

 Yeah... that's an IPad Mini... WHAT?!

No for real.. .like $10,000 in prizes more...

So, be sure to check back each day to enter for your chance to win HUGE prize packs, grab up some FREEBIES, and see some amazing deals.

If you don't already, I suggest you like my page on FB!

 Then click "Get notifications" under liked so that you'll be the first to see each day's prize packs, products, and FREEBIES!

ANNNNDDDD... because I am just soooo excited about this event, I've got THREE  TpT GCs up for grabs today and tomorrow!

This will be the PERFECT thing to help you clear out that wish list during the TpT Sale this week!

YEAH... That's right, TpT is hosting a two day sale to say THANK YOU for all your hard work too! (I convinced them for ya! ;)) I'll have my ENTIRE store on sale for 20% May 5th and 6th, and you can save and additional 10% off by using the code THANKYOU at check out. That's a total savings of 28% off! #WIN

Want to win?! Enter below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I'll be back tomorrow with MORE prizes, goodies, and fun! XOXO!

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Thursday, April 9, 2015

Mentoring Minds

Hi everyone!
     I’m excited to post today because there’s a company that I really want to share with you all!

     The company is called Mentoring Minds and they are pretty great because they focus on fostering a skill that every teacher wants their students to be great at… CRITICAL THINKING!

     We all know that critical thinking and making kids “dig below the surface” is a very difficult, sometimes daunting task. There are ways to make it more exciting and fun for the students (and you!) though.

     Mentoring Minds has a plethora of products to choose from in all subjects areas including reading, math, writing, science, and social studies. Later on in the post, I’ll highlight some of my favorite resources that I think you should check out!

     Now, I’m sure you’re thinking about how there’s tons of websites out there that offer great products for teachers but there is something that sets Mentoring Minds apart in my honest opinion. What I really love about them is the fact that they have an entire section of their website dedicated to RESEARCH. They truly took the time to put together the research BEHIND their products. I really appreciate that because:
         A.      It helps me to understand the company’s thinking when creating the product.
         B.      It helps me to choose the correct products for my students and my classroom because I know the product’s intentions and that there is actual research to back up its validity. 
         C.      It saves ME time because I don’t have to go searching and trying to find out the information for myself. (Cause let’s face it, ain’t no teacher got time for that!)

      I’m just highly impressed with this part of the website because it’s one I haven’t seen on other educational product websites. It’s also very easy to navigate. You hit the OUR RESEARCH tab, then choose the products you’re wanting to know more about, and there is a thorough, detailed explanation of the research behind it. Can’t beat that!

     Now, you’re probably wondering what the products are like. Well, as a Texas Teacher, I really like the STAAR related products. They are aligned to the TEKS I teach and the products include every piece of information possible to help me plan and implement. Want to see for yourself? You’re in luck! The website lets you download a Student Sample AND a Teacher Sample so you know exactly what you’re getting before you purchase. Click here to head straight to the Total Motivation Reading product and look under the pictures to download the samples!

They also have some great MATH products that you can check out here!

Some other favorites (Click on the pics to head straight to them):

     These are a very small sample of the products that I love from Mentoring Minds! I truly hope you decide to look around the site for a bit and see what all they have to offer!

Thanks so much for stopping by! Xoxo

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Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Surprise Announcement!

Have you heard the news!?  Educents is opening their MARKETPLACE!  What does that mean?  That means that besides the already AMAZING deals they offer on a daily basis, you can now purchase items from sellers stores, also on a daily basis!  WHAT!?  That’s right!  Over 500 sellers have already created stores in the Educents Marketplace, so you are sure to find some money-saving deals any time you need them!
To LAUNCH the whole thing, several of the sellers are joining in to bring you a sneak peek at a FREE product offered for their new sale, as well as hosting a giveaway for $50 worth of Educents Credits.  You can buy a LOT of educational materials with that kind of money!  And, there are several groups of bloggers who are joining the LAUNCH, which means multiple ways to enter. Doesn't get much better than that, right?!?

As you check out the marketplace, you'll also find some FREEBIES highlighted in the new storefronts! 
You can snag a PREVIEW SAMPLE of my Non-Fiction Edition Prove It! Resource! The preview sample gives you a whole passage and comprehension questions so you can try it out with your class, kids at home, whoever you want for FREE so you know if the product is right for you and your learners!

You'll also find an I Have, Who Has? Freebie in my store as well, with more to come! :)

Make sure you enter below for your chance to WIN a $50 credit!
Educents Marketplace $50 in Edubucks Giveaway #7 - Second Grade Stores

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Sunday, February 15, 2015

House of Gav Jewelry Giveaway!

Hi everyone!

One of my best friends from high school recently opened her own Etsy shop where she is selling handmade jewelry! Her pieces are so beautiful and elegant and she has been kind enough to let me host a giveaway for 2 pairs of earrings and a ring!

Ashley has also been kind enough to offer an exclusive 20% off code for my fabulous followers!

Click here to head to Ashley's Etsy shop and be sure to use code houseofgav20 at checkout!
I hope you will check out her shop, enter to win, and spread the word!

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Saturday, February 14, 2015

Deep in the Heart of Texas Blog Hop

Welcome to the "Deep in the Heart of Texas" blog hop!  Over 40 Texas teacher bloggers have joined together to share what we love about our state as well as ideas and freebies that we love.  You will also have the opportunity to enter to win TpT products and/or TpT gift certificates by entering using the rafflecopters included in each post.  Down at the bottom, you will see all of the blogs participating in the hop.  Just click and you will be taken to their posts.  We hope you love what you find.  Happy Valentine's Day!

Hi y'all! My name is Daina and I'm a 2nd grade teacher in Fort Worth, TX! I was born in Dallas, TX! I grew up living in the country (on about 190 acres) and now live about 7 minutes from downtown Fort Worth. I am definitely a city girl for the most part but hold on to some of my country loves (like cowboy boots and horseback riding!) I'm so happy you are here! I apologize in advance for my overuse of photos. I'm a bit #addicted. 
The better question is what DON'T I love about my city/town! It would definitely be a much shorter list haha! I LOVE living in Fort Worth! And not just in Fort Worth, but in TEXAS! I am 110% Texan through and through. I think my number one reason for loving Fort Worth is that it has a sense of values and that little town feel even though it's a BIG city. I also love the never ending array of activities and places that you can explore. There's always something new to discover. And why do I love Texas so much? Simple. Because we have more state pride than any other state! :) 

Here's some pictures to show what I love about my city/state!
Sundance Square in Downtown Fort Worth (& more importantly, my AMAZING friends that I LOVE AND happen to teach with!)

The State Fair of Texas!!!!!

The multitude of shopping malls and holiday decor, Six Flags, Fort Worth Japanese Gardens!

Chinese Lantern Festival, AT&T Stadium and the Dallas Cowboys, and Sundance Square at Christmas!

That good ol' Texas pride. Cross/Flag hanging in my house and my favorite pair of cowboy boots!

Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo!

I recently did a Text Features lesson and I was SO HAPPY with how it went!!! I have never seen the kids so engaged and anxious to get their hands on books! It was an AMAZING feeling. 
Here's the jist of how it went...followed by some pics.
1. Created Anchor Chart and covered all parts with sticky notes to add some mystery. 
2. Discussed WHY we need to use text features. Projected an ebook on the screen about Amazing Water Frogs and pointed out the text features I was focusing on as we went through the book. I revealed them on the anchor chart as we went. 
3. I then sent students to work in groups where I had placed a book bin full of nonfiction animal books on their AR level so it was differentiated. 
4. Students were given a little mini-reference sheet, sticky notes, and the books. They had to look through the books and do a "text feature scavenger hunt" by finding and labeling those text features. 
5. They then had to follow up by filling out a reflection type sheet where they told me what text features they found, what they think they will learn about in the book, and what they are still wondering about.

The following day we extended the lesson by making "text feature booklets" where I gave them lots of Scholastic News articles and they had to glue examples for each text feature to the correct page of their book. They did FABULOUS and begged me to do it again. To me, that = SUCCESS.
I originally found this anchor chart on Pinterest but can't seem to find it again. If this is your original anchor chart, please let me know so I can credit you! :)

Extension Activity!

In connection with what I shared above, nonfiction activities and resources are my favorite. It's my all-time favorite topic to teach about and the kids know it! My favorite freebie that I have is my Prove It! Non-Fiction Edition FREEBIE Sample! You can use the freebie as a stand-alone activity in your classroom and the whole purpose is to practice supporting answers using text evidence in a very systematic, memorable way! If you enjoy the freebie sample, make sure you enter the giveaway below where I am giving away my whole BUNDLE of Prove It! Resources!
You can click on the pic to download the freebie! Enjoy!

Click on the buttons below to visit some other awesome Texas bloggers!

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Monday, December 29, 2014

Top 10 Insta Pics of 2014 {Linky}

I decided to link up with Natalie over at Teachery Tidbits for her fun linky!
I LOVE Instagram so I just couldn't resist!

So here are my TOP 10 Insta Pics from this year! I plucked 'em straight from IG so they have original captions and hashtags included, hehe.

I mean really, what teacher DOESN'T love chevron?!?

For this one, I'm guessing a lot of my followers either love Texas or Kahlua, or both! Hahaha. As for me, I love BOTH!

This was SO MUCH FUN. If you've never done anything like this before, I HIGHLY suggest you give it a try! I have ZERO painting experience but I'm super happy with how it turned out!

Self explanatory - Starbucks + Gift Card = Teacher Heaven

BOOK RAFFLES!!! SOOO much fun. I really should do a whole blog post about this! Perhaps later this week. ;)

LOVE that my followers are big comic nerds like me! I LOVE Harley Quinn and I actually plan on getting a Harley Quinn inspired tattoo for my birthday in April! I'm sure I'll end up posting it on IG too! :)

These were a lot o work to get prepped and ready but soooo worth it! I love it and so did the parents!

This is so 100% me. And apparently I'm not alone!

Still loving this job chart and so do my kiddos! It's by Mel D and you can click on the pic if you want to check it out for yourself! I just LOVE the colors!!

AND my NUMBER ONE photo from this year was actually posted today! It already has 109 likes because I teamed up with some of my best blogging buddies and we are giving away one of those adorable personalized pencil signs!!!
{P.S. It's not too late to enter!}

If you aren't following me on Instagram, I really would love for you to! I mostly share personal photos and some teaching tricks/tips and it's almost always different than what I'm sharing here or on my FB page!

You can follow me by clicking here or searching @stickynotesandglitter on IG!

Thanks for stopping by! Xoxo

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