JACKPOT! My FAVE collection of online brain breaks & educational, ad-free games! Just had to share!

Thanks for checking out my teacher blog!  But wait!  There's MORE!  If you visit www.HOWYWOOD.com, you'll find my collection of online treasures to use in your classroom with your students!   Under the "Math" and "Language Arts" tabs I've picked my favorite, high quality, AD-FREE educational games for ~K-1.  All kid-tested and approved!  They love it!
"Just for fun" is full of popular kid's sites... not necessarily ad-free, but they're familiar places like Nat Geo, Disney, Nick Jr, PBS Kids, LEGO, American Girl, and much more!  Be sure to look at 1HappyBirthday.com... they have free personalized birthday songs thousands and thousands of names! My class loves finding and playing the song for the birthday kid!

And now for my personal FAVORITE... the place I visit every school day- Brain Breaks!  There are so many good ones out there, right?!  I got tired of saving a few to my favorites and having to look them up- or googling what I wanted...  So I put them all in one place!  

I've also got a few iPad app ideas and  links to digital story books.  
I can't keep a good thing to myself- so I'm sharing and hoping you and your students can benefit from it!  Have fun! 

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Mother's Day Project Pack!

A collection of my three FAVORITE Mother's Day projects from the past 12 years! Guaranteed to become a timeless treasure for the special mom or grandma in your student's life! Everything you need to get started is right here!

There are so many sweet projects you can do with your little ones to help them show their love and appreciation for the special ladies in their lives! I’ve done these with Kindergarten and 1st graders, but I’m sure they’d work for a little older kids, too. You could choose your favorite or do them all… it’s totally up to you. The kids will love being able to do something special for their mom or grandma…. And every one of these is sure to become a treasure that she will keep forever.

I believe in giving teacher's lots of styling options (so you can choose why you like AND what works best for your kids!) so you'll see you have a couple different choices for what you'd like to print to go along with each individual project.

Here is a quick list of the three projects:

1. The “I love you to pieces” puzzle piece pin project (directions and photos to guide you through how to make this adorable craft... and also several printables you can use to display and give it.)
Check it out!  I'm wearing the pin here... made by my sweet baby, Elli!  

2. The CLASSIC “My Special Mother” fill-in-the-blank writing and picture project (Prepare to giggle over the things kids say for this and also the book project below! Precious... and oh, so simple for you.)  Did you make something like this for your mom when you were little?  I know I did and my mom still has it somewhere!  I just did this activity with my class today and here are a few samples for you to smile about.... AND I even added another line to my TpT file after we did this-- the latest version also lets them have a chance to say how mom likes to relax... lol. THAT could be funny!  :) 

This mom wouldn't even be traded for a monkey!  Wow! :)

LOVE this sweet artwork-- look at their shirts!

"She is as pretty as a bride!"

This momma couldn't even be traded for donuts!  :)

I wouldn't trade my mother for a penny.  Yesssss!

"She weighs a few pounds, I wouldn't trade her for a stuffed animal, and she's like a flower blooming in the Spring."  Oh- and look at their shirts!  "dodr" and "mom"  <3

"She is as pretty as a ladybug and I wouldn't trade her for a unicorn!"

To wrap it up, we just folded the page in half and put some words and hearts on the front...

3. The “All About My Mom” book project (Again, easy peasy to print and use! Kids fill in the blanks and draw pictures to finish phrases like "If my mom were a super hero she would be ________ because _______" or "If my mom were an animal she would be a __________ because ___________.")

Flip through them and see what would work best with your students and the time you have! Oh, and note that all of the projects come with pages that say "grandma" or "grandmother" as well as "mom" or "mother." Options for everyone!

Happy Mother’s Day! Thanks for stopping by!
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The SUPER MEGA PACK of Sub Plans! 4 Awesome books, 5 Fabulous days!!

Big news!  It's finally here!

HOT! Looking for some time-saving, efficient, hassle-free, 4-star, best-selling sub plans? You've come to the perfect place!! 

This zipped file will provide you with 5 entire day's worth of projects and educational activities that you can easily leave for a sub. These 5 days could be consecutive OR spread across the entire school year... it's just nice to have some activities laid out and ready to go if and when those last minute emergencies or sick days pop up. I always keep a set of Super Speedy Sub Plans in a folder on my desk all ready to go... just in case! It's a huge stress-reducer!

Plans are based around 4 popular children's books you probably have in your classroom library or you could easily find in your school library:
1. The Mitten by Jan Brett
2. Pinkalicious by Elizabeth & Victoria Kann (2 days worth!)
3. Brown Bear, Brown Bear by Bill Martin Jr.
4. If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Numeroff

Everything is appealing, VERY clearly explained, and spans across many subjects/skills: math, reading, writing, health, listening, art, teamwork, class books, and even games just for fun!

I've personally used all of these in my all-day K classroom with subs and they've been a huge hit! I taught 1st grade for 9 years and know these would transfer well to 1st grade, too.

There’s so much to choose from here that once you add this to your usual routine (morning meeting, specials, recess, lunch, etc.), you’ll certainly have several “leftovers" that you could use yourself when you get back to make your transition back to school a little less crazy! I've never had a sub get through a day's worth of plans in one day (which is GOOD because you don't want them to run out of things to do!).

Being sick is hard enough-- don’t stress about being gone, don’t stress about coming back. :)

So there are 2 ways to do this: Can’t make it to school all of the sudden? Just email this file to a teacher friend who can print a copy for you and hand it to your sub.
Or if you’re planning ahead, pop this baby in your “emergency sub folder” and it’ll be there when you need it. You or the sub will need to make a few photocopies (black and white is fine), but that’s all. No other materials (besides the book and basics like scissors and crayons) are required. It’s really simple and super fun!

Read the awesome reviews of the mega pack here!

This SUPER MEGA PACK saves you the most money and gives you access to every set of 4-star plans I've created so far. I think it's a great way to "stock up" for the school year, but these plans are also available for individual sale in my store if you're just looking for 1-2 days worth. There's also a "MEGA PACK" for sale that includes everything except the 2 days of Pinkalicious (but I think Pinkalicious is some of my best work- just sayin! So once again, this pack here is really the BEST deal, but you have options!). :)
So just sit back & relax… Super Speedy Sub Plans has everything under control.

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Show me the money!

Imagine the perfect little packet to introduce coins... here it is! :) Includes a cute cover, a super catchy song about coins and their values (you can't help but smile when you sing it!), and of course a page dedicated to each specific coin (penny, nickel, dime, quarter). Students see a picture of the coin, fill in the value, name the President on the coin, practice counting the coins, and have some space to make some crayon rubbings of the actual coin.

I like to print these and have them stapled into little 6 page books (or 3 pages if you copy 2-sided) for each student. You could certainly use the pages as stand alone printables though, too.
It's also fun to get out magnifying glasses and let kids really study the coins as we're filling out the book together. They'll love it! Thanks for stopping by!
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Spicin it up with a little Espanol!

 The story from our LA curriculum form a few weeks ago was all about "Abuela" so we had a blast brushing up on our Spanish!  The kids loved learning new words and illustrating them in this Spanish book I created!  It includes a cute rainbow coloring page about colors, a connect the words/numbers page about numbers 1-5 and 8 awesome pages to help kids learn 36 useful Spanish words! Each page includes 4 words and definitions (so you don't have to guess if you're not a Spanish expert yourself!) that are all organized into a nice, neat category: 

2 pages about people: grandmother, grandfather, mom, dad, friend, teacher, sister, brother
animals: cat, dog, bird, bear
things: pencil, jacket, book, house
feelings: I love you, I like it, good, bad
food: apple, corn, chicken, milk
body parts: head, eyes, ears, mouth
phrases: good morning, good night, happy birthday, and let's go
Each word or phrase is in a box with enough room for students to draw a little illustration to help them remember what the word means. We did about 2 pages a day and they begged for more.  Don't you just LOVE Kindergarten illustrations??

the "ears" here are too funny.  :)

In class, we also threw in a bunch of Dr. Jean goodness... her "Hand on My Head" song is my favorite... and she even has her entire Ole!  Ole!  Ole! CD with all kinds of fun Spanish songs.  If you aren't familiar with those, you should check them out!   Just wanted to share cause with Cinco de Mayo creeping up, this might make your 1st week of May extra fun.  :)  Adios!
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Hello? Spring? Are you there?

Hey!   Even though the first day of Spring was weeks ago, it somehow doesn't seem too late to share this... so here goes:

We have 33 school days until Summer Vacation!  But here in MN, we're still waiting for Spring to show her lovely face-- check out my feet after school today: 

Yikes!  many inches of sloppy, heavy, wet snow.  I was caught off guard and my toes paid the price- ha.  
Back on the 1st official day of Spring, we made these adorable robins and I had to share!  My sister gave me this idea years ago...  they're so simple and cute and super Spring-y, don't you think?!  It's fun to see how the different eyes or positions of the wings can create such personalities.  :)

You just need 2 circle tracers... one bigger, one smaller.  Have kids trace and cut an orange and brown small circle (for the tummy and head) and 2 big brownies (for the body and the wings-- cut in half for the wings).   The beak, eyes, and feet were all free-handed by the kindergarteners.  We also made some robin eggs and wrote ING words all over them. 
  So there ya go!  Hope the weather is better where you are!  Happy Spring... eventually!  It can't be Winter forever, right?? :)

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