Saturday, December 8, 2012

Read About Santa....

      I promised 25 Christmas Reads! So here are 3 more of my family favorites! 
Children are so curious to learn more and more about Santa.  These three books are entertaining for children of all ages.

Santa’s Stuck By Rhonda Gowler Greene

          That’s right the stockings are stuffed and the toys are under the tree.  Santa is almost finished for the night.  He enjoys another yummy treat before heading up the chimney.  It appears Santa has been given many goodies this year.  A big problem occurs when Santa realizes he is STUCK!!!  This funny rhyming book will have the entire family laughing.
      How Santa Got His Job By Stephen Krensky
    Find out the jobs Santa had when he was young.  This delightful story is a great book to share with children.  The book reveals Santa’s special talents.  Learn what they are and how he found his dream job.

 How Santa Lost His Job By Stephen Krensky
        Santa has his dream job.  He loves bringing presents to children all around the world.  However, one of his elves thinks he has a better way to deliver these presents without wasting time.  Muckle, the elf, has created the Deliverator.  Read to find out about this invention.  What in the world will Santa do now without a job???

       This book is a great read aloud along with the movie Arthur’s Perfect Christmas.  Compare and Contrast the events in the book and movie.

Holiday Book Gifts for BOYS!!

     I recently discovered these two great books by Jon Klassen.  I have already bought them for my nephew.  These books rely on the reader to really think and investigate the pictures while reading.  Young readers will enjoy trying to figure out what is going to happen. Boys will love these books because of the use of critters like the snake and turtle and the poor little fish that has taken the hat.  Watch out they may not end so well for some of the characters in these books.  I found these books at my local Target!  It always makes me happy to find great literature for children at popular stores.  Check these two out soon!!

Thanks for checking out my latest Christmas READS!  Grab a book and read TODAY!!!!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Christmas READS!

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever

By: Barbara Robinson

       A classic Christmas book is the tale of the famous “Herdmans”. The Herdmans are the worst kids in the world.  They get in trouble all the time. This remarkable story paints a picture for the reader as the Herdmans walk into the church for the first time and decide to participate in the Christmas Pageant. This chapter book is enjoyed by third, fourth and fifth graders at my school. Avery loves the book so much.  We are reading a chapter a night to his brother, Worth. 
      The Scholastic Book order forms have the new picture book of this classic story.  I can’t wait to receive my copy.  Do you have it??  What do you think about the picture book version? 

Happy Monday,

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Christmas READS

Pete the cat has stolen the hearts of many children and teachers. Today, I must share our new favorite holiday book.

Pete the Cat Saves Christmas
Created and illustrated by James Dean
Story by Eric Litwin
    Santa was sick and it was the day before Christmas.  Pete had to deliver the toys.  Although he was small, he gave it his all.  After all that's the spirit of Christmas to give it your all!  This story will be a family favorite.  It is a great innovation of The Night Before Christmas. 

Families can enjoy a free song by clicking the link below:

    If you are reading this book to your class, Natalie at Natalie’s Nook has created an incredible Literacy Unit with 10 Literacy Activities.  It is a MUST have! Just click on the pic to go to Natalie's Nook at Teachers Pay Teachers.

Pete The Cat Saves Christmas {10 Literacy Activities}

Enjoy your day!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

25 days of Christmas READS!

    It is beginning to look a lot like Christmas….I sure love this time of year!   I enjoy seeing the excitement in children’s eyes as they prepare for Santa.  One of my favorite things to introduce to my students is The Gingerbread Man.   We read many versions mapping out all the story elements.  My first graders enjoy reading these stories over and over. 
     My boys at home enjoy our 25 days of Christmas Reads!  We spend time each night reading one or two holiday books.  Avery is in fifth grade and could hardly wait for today, December 1 to arrive.  This year, I would like to share our books with you each day over the holiday season.  Maybe you will discover a new book for your class or family.
   Our first books to share are great for enjoying after decorating a Christmas Tree.

Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree by Robert Barry
     Mr. Willowby’s Christmas tree is so tall that it can’t stand up.  Mr. Willowby asks his butler to chop off the top of the tree.  The treetop is given to different characters throughout the story.  This holiday tale will fill your family with Christmas joy.

A Wish to be a Christmas Tree by Colleen Monroe
Woodland animals show the power of friendship to an old Christmas tree that is overgrown.  Find out how the squirrel, birds, deer and other animals give back to this special Christmas tree.  This story helps our family start conversations about the reason for giving throughout the year.

Enjoy this book as it is read by Mitch Albom on a YouTube video:

A Wish to be a Christmas Tree

Thanks for stopping by!  My hope is your home is filled with joy throughout this holiday season.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Let the Learning Safari Begin...

        Tomorrow will be my 10th day at school with my students.  I have 24 amazing children.  We have spent the past two weeks building a community of workers, thinkers and readers based on RESPECT!  My all time favorite book to read to the class at the beginning of the year is Swimmy by Leo Lionni.  This is a wonderful story of how we can work together despite our differences.  This year my students have loved My Mouth is a Volcano by Julia Cook  This story explains to children how we have to wait our turn to talk even though our thoughts are like a volcano exploding out of our mouth.  I love how the book gives students a way to hold on to their thoughts and wait their turn.  A must read for children that love to interrupt! My students have pleaded for me to read this book over and over. I think children can really connect, perhaps even adults,too!

I must share pictures of my Learning Safari!  I simply love the learning environment that I have created this year.  I must give a big shout out to Randi at Teach it with Class for the incredible jungle theme class unit. 
Enjoy the tour!!!

This is what you see when you walk in my door!

 My carpet area where we read and share our thinking! My students love to sit in my rocking chair as much as I do.
 These are my POWER Books! Otherwise know as my leveled library! I level these books from A to M. I will be sharing more about how I use my Power books later on my blog.
 This is my calendar. Yes! I tried to recreate a Jeep from a Pinterest post I found over the summer. It is a great place to store my lessons and MUSIC! 
 Word Work Boulevard is where students can work with words during our Reader Land time each day.
 My favorite place in our Learning Safari, Book Nook Lane. Students read in this area during Reader's workshop and Reader Land.  I introduce a basket of books every week. My baskets are sorted by Genres. So far I have introduced, Alphabet books, Reading about Math, and Caldecott Medal books.  The red signs show that the books are sleeping and can not be read at this time.

Our class motto: Be Your Best
Here are more baskets of books and the plastic clear tubs are my Math Workshop Tubs.

     I have enjoyed seeing all the classrooms in blog land! I hope you enjoy my classroom tour. 

   Don't forget I am still hosting an Amazing Pencil Giveaway. Please read my last post.  All you have to do is follow my blog, visit Classroom Friendly Supplies and sign up through Rafflecopter. The giveaway ends tomorrow.

Thanks for visiting!! Happy Teaching~

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

A Must HAVE!!!

     I am having the best beginning of the school year. I have 23 energetic first graders. We have begun our Learning Safari together!

        I must share a package that I got in the mail this summer. Troy Decoff from Classroom Friendly Supplies sent me this incredible blue monster!

     It has no problem chomping pencils to the sharpest of points.  The amazing thing is the cheap pencils are sharper than ever.  Just take a look!

           I have been sharing this incredible pencil sharpener with everyone on my hall.  It is amazing that for once in my teaching career I have SHARP pencils that don't constantly break!!   It is definitely what ALL the teachers are talking about.  

       This pencil sharpener has made my life easy for the past 9 days.  Therefore, I must host a giveaway.  I am going to try out Rafflecopter for the first time.  Here goes...

     All you must do is Follow my Blog:

And visit Classroom Friendly Supplies

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, August 19, 2012

It's School Time!!!

    Tomorrow is my first official day back at school!  I am filled with excitement!  This weekend, I could have been spotted at Office Depot, Staples, Walmart, Ollie's, and many other locations as I gathered the goodies I needed to begin the year.  I have a new classroom this year. I was in an educational cottage or mobile unit last year.  I am now going to be located on the 4th and 5th grade hall.  Yes! I am still teaching first grade.  It will be nice to have older students so close by to help my little ones read.  I am really excited about having a hall filled with co workers. Together we will enjoy our adventure of  inspiring children.
   My theme this year is " Our Learning Jungle".  I am thankful for Randi Fleming at Teach it with Class for the incredible jungle unit.  I will take lots of pictures and share with you before our open house.  I will meet my new crew on Thursday night.  August 27th will be our first day of learning together.  
    My hope is that each of you will have a wonderful week of teaching and learning.  I will be in touch soon.
Happy Blogging!

Friday, August 10, 2012

The BEST workshop ever!

                  I have just returned from Winston Salem where I was a part of the ERG literacy Institute. The presenters were Debbie Miller, Stephanie Harvey and Chris Tovani. Debbie and Stephanie are two authors and teachers whom I admire. It was so incredible to be able to meet them. They shared so much information about Reading and Common core. I must say I am still going over all that I learned. The truly awesome part of the 3 day workshop was the time I was able to spend with Debbie and Stephanie individually thinking out loud about my classroom and school! 
              It is so exciting to see how for the first time in education's history our standards will truly match what reading instruction research says works. We are moving into a new era of education and I am thrilled to be a part of this change. Thinking is essential! We must create environments where learners are able to be curious! Students have to be constantly reading, writing, thinking and TALKING!
              Stephanie Harvey’s workshop was titled,” Passion and Wonder are Contagious!” This is so true! My goal is to model for my young learners how to be curious about the wonderful world we live in. 
              I learned from Debbie Miller to let the students be a part of the discovery and figure it out. Let them try first and then guide students with what they need after you discover what they can do! 
              I am sure you know by now how much I love books.   So I was tempted by tons of great books this week at the workshop. I couldn’t resist several. I will share a couple of my new purchases to add to my nightstand. 
 I am presently reading: 
Teaching with Intention by Debbie Miller

The crazy thing is now that I have listened to Debbie Miller. I can hear her sweet voice, as I read this book about beliefs, aligning practice, and taking action.

I can't wait to read: Comprehension Going Forward Debbie Miller, Stephanie Harvey and Chris Tovani all have chapters in this book.  Many incredible reading instruction authors and researchers have chapters.

Of course, I had to get autographs!

I will leave you with one last thing to think about as you prepare for your learners. What are we asking kids to do?  Is it purposeful, authentic, meaningful and in real time?  Who is doing the reading writing and thinking in your classroom? This person is getting smarter.

Thanks for visiting! 

Monday, August 6, 2012

Newbie Blog Hop

  I have joined my first blog hop!  I can't believe it but I have figured out all the technology on my own! Hooray!!  I am so excited to meet so many new bloggers.  You will want to check them out too!

1. What state are you in? I live in Goldsboro, North Carolina
2. Your current teaching position: I teach First Grade!
3. Your teaching experience:  This is my 15th year teaching. I have taught K through 3 grades.  My most experience is teaching first.  I love to teach reading.
4.When you started Blogging?  I started blogging in March 2012.  I have loved being apart of the blog world.
5. Share a blogging tip/blogging resource: My friend Randi at Teach it With Class always says, " Write like someone is always reading!" Sometimes you can feel like you are on an island all by yourself in blog land but someone is always discovering you!
Happy Blog Hopping!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

A Summer Full of READING!

            Last week, I met with my students that had participated in Camp Bookworm. Books were returned and praises were given for all the incredible reading completed.  Some of my students had accomplished more than the 25 book challenge.  They had read 50 books over the summer.  My heart smiled as I collected the many books borrowed and heard the warming stories of how books had been a rewarding part of their summer!  My last Camp Book Selection was Joe and Sparky, Superstars! By Jamie Michalak.

     This book has a turtle and giraffe as the main characters.  The characters work to find out Sparky, the turtle’s hidden talent.  In the end, they find indeed he does have a talent. His shadow is one of a kind and anybody can be a superstar! The book is a beginning chapter book illustrated beautifully by  Frank Remkiewicz.  This appears to be the second book about these great friends. 

       I have just finished a great book about Common Core.  Pathways to the Common Core really helped ease my fears with implementing theses new standards.   Calkins, Ehrenworth and Lehman did an amazing job explaining what the standards meant and how to increase teacher and student learning.  I really gained an understanding of the Common Core Reading Standards, Writing Standards and Speaking/Listening and Language Standards.  I am so excited to implement Common Core!  I am thankful that I have already started my journey with reader’s workshop.  Reader’s Workshop and Writer’s workshop will be great tools to help my student's learning accelerate!  What are your thoughts on Common Core?  Will you be implementing them for the first time this year? I would love to hear from you! 
Thanks for taking the time to stop by and read my thoughts! See you next time…..

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Ice Cream, Ice Cream

        I have had the best summer vacation!  I have really enjoyed reading all the great ideas out in blog land.  I am inspired daily by all of you.  Your passion, dedication and creativity are motivating! Thanks to all of you!
        Last week, I met with my Camp Bookworm.  This has been a rewarding experience. Students returned to my room to check out 20 more books from my class library.  Parents and students were thrilled with the reading that had been completed so far.  I really believe my students are motivate and reading more thanks to Camp Bookworm.  Many had already completed their 25 summer book challenge!

      Our July Book Selection is The Ice Cream King by Steve Metzger.  This is a wonderful summer read.  I know my family has had tons of ice cream this summer!  This book is imaginative and entertaining for the family!  The best part of the book is the wonderful lesson learned at the end!  Check it out today!  I have added the packet sent home with students for free download at my tpt store!

 Get your free download today!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Camp Bookworm

             Summer time is here!!  I enjoy the relaxing days ahead!  What other job allows you priceless time to spend with your children.  We have beach trips, camps, pajama days, pool time, bike rides, and story time ahead of us.  I just love summer time!
             I look at summer time as a wonderful way to get a jump on learning.  I have seen students that I have looped up with slide so much over the summer.  This year, I was not willing to let my students slide backwards.  Instead, I am hoping to help them jump ahead.  I created Camp Bookworm.  I believe that parents want what is best for their children.  Life gets in the way and can be responsible at times for children not having a regular reading time.  I know as a parent, I need guidance from time to time.  I am hoping Camp Bookworm will guide parents into developing their bookworms at home.
            I had 14 students sign up to take part in our summer camp.  Students left on the last day of school with a camp bag.  The bag contained: a camp guide ( reading tips for parents), Our June book
( Froggy Goes to Hawaii), a June book selection pack ( Activities that correlate with our June book), a reading and thinking log, and 20 books borrowed from my class library.
             The students were allowed to select 20 books that were good fit books for them.  The exciting thing is we will have two camp meetings over the summer.  Students will return the borrowed books for a selection of 20 more books at our camp meetings.  Parents were thrilled with the resources.  I am really hoping this will provide parents with the information needed to motivate their reader this summer.  
              I have added both of the packets for you to download for FREE at my TPT store.  I hope they will help someone you know this summer.  I will post the July and August book selection packs throughout the summer.

Happy Summer!!

Monday, May 14, 2012

And The Winner is....

Congratulations to Courtney Bartlett!!
She has won the $25.00 Gift Card from Amazon. 

True Random Number Generator  18Powered by RANDOM.ORG

Check out Courtney's Amazing Blog
Swimming into Second
Thanks to everyone that participated in this giveaway!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012


             “What office is there which involves more responsibility, which requires more qualifications, and which ought, therefore, to be more honorable than teaching.”
                                                                 -Harriet Martineau

     Wow!  This is a great quote to sum up teaching.   All educators know how powerful of a job we each have on a daily basis.    Educators understand why we need a summer break.   In fact, most teachers spend their summer refreshing and creating new ideas for the upcoming year.   
      We are blessed to know the reward of a student truly understanding!  I can’t think of another profession that I would be so honored to have.
     Because of my gratitude to dedicated teachers all over, I am hosting a giveaway!  
     Teachers know that in order to create bookworms you need lots of BOOKS.  So, I am giving a $25.00 Amazon Gift Card away!

The giveaway is easy.  Here is what you need to do:

1.  Follow my blog.(one entry)
2.  Follow my Facebook page: Creating Bookworms Page
     (one entry)
    3.  Don’t be a Scrooge share this giveaway with two friends.
    4.  If you host your own blog, take time to blog about this    
         giveaway. (one entry) 
Giveaway ends Monday, May 14 at 6:00pm Eastern Time

This is my FIRST ever giveaway. 
I started Creating Bookworms almost two months ago.  
Thanks for all the support!! 

Friday, May 4, 2012

Author's Chat

                My students are published authors!  First graders had the best time working in their individual offices sharing their writing with visitors during our Author’s Chat today.  Each student had a Writing Briefcase filled with published writings throughout the year.  This week we spent time reflecting on each piece of writing.  First graders laughed at their writings from the beginning of the year.  They were able to pick out the many ways they had improved throughout the year.   Goals were set for their continued improvement in writing.  I loved how their areas to work on were often the same as I would have picked for them. 
            Students were most excited to share our class published book “Research Detectives”.  This book was published from Student Treasures Publishing Company.  We spent a couple weeks researching topics that interested each individual.  We had books on many animals and favorite activities.  Together we went through the five steps of the writing process.  In the end, we had an incredible book that will be a family treasure for these 20 authors.    I just couldn’t send the books home without a big celebration!


              Our Author’s Chat was an amazing learning adventure.  How often do first graders get to feel like professionals with briefcases, nameplates, and individual offices?   Visitors were given questions to ask our first graders.  I wanted this to be a time for students to think deeply about their writing and celebrate their accomplishments.   What a huge success!!  

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Strawberries,Strawberries, Strawberries!!

                My wonderful Spring Break has come to an end!  Oh boy, did I have fun with my boys!  We spent Easter Weekend at the Beach.  On Monday, we ventured to Charlotte for Camp Rowdy!  A three day adventure with my best friend and her three boys.  Five high energy boys enjoyed playing hiding go seek, building a lemonade stand and lots of yogurt from Cherry Berry!  On Friday, I took the boys for the first time to pick delicious, ripe strawberries.  I think Worth ate more than he picked.

                     We ended our wonderful morning after picking, cleaning, and eating with our all time favorite book.  

                             I instantly became inspired to create my first mini unit!  Please check out my Teachers Pay Teachers store to download your FREE copy!
  Let me know what you think......
                     Do you have favorite books that you read about strawberries?  I would love to hear your favorites.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Powerful Books

      My first graders have had lots of experiences with a variety of books this year.  We discussed how “You are what you read!”  I shared with my students how books have impacted my life and asked them to share books that were powerful to them.  We worked for several days on this project.
      Our completed projected ended up as a class book for us to read over and over.  I thought my students might get some ideas of new books to read from their friends.  This was truly a rewarding activity!  I was able to learn even more about my students and understand their thinking as well as what excites them.  Enjoy the pictures!

Here is a copy of the sheet I created. Just copy on card stock.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Books Tell My Story

       We recently received a Scholastic Non Fiction Library for our classroom.  This library is filled with a variety of trade books that relate to the Common Core Standards.   I was able to attend a workshop held by Scholastic to train us on the types of books we received and ways to use them in our instruction.  During this training, we were asked to think about our Text Lineage. We were asked to share three books that had impacted us throughout our life.   As I reflected over my three books to share, I realized that my childhood favorites impacted the way I teach every day.  I thought this activity might help you learn a little more about me.
        My first book is Corduroy by Don Freeman.  I loved watching Captain Kangaroo as a child.  One day I was sick and stayed home with my grandmother.  This book was featured on the show.  I fell in love with the book because I was able to connect to this story in so many ways.  All children know what it is like to want a new toy.  Lisa was so much like me because I loved to mother my stuffed animals. In fact, I had a special teddy bear named, Cuddles.  My mom bought this book for me.  I felt so special because I had a “famous” book.  I continue to read this book each year to my students. They know this was one of my favorites as a child.  

          My next book is Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein.  I received this book from my parents after making the A/B honor roll in Third Grade.  I still have my original copy.  This may be surprising but reading didn’t come easy for me.  I struggled in school to learn how to read.  I remember how excited I was to make the A/B honor roll. This book was filled with incredible poetry that I could read!  I sat in my room for hours and read these poems over and over because I felt successful!

The last book in my Text Lineage is

           I was given this book while I was a facilitator.  I immediately began reading and could not put the book down.  I don’t know if I have ever had a book that changed my thinking as much as this book.  I knew I had to get back in the classroom and try Donalyn Miller’s approach to reading.  This is my first full year of using the Reader’s Workshop approach in my classroom.  The results are amazing! I just assessed my children and over half of my class is reading way beyond where they should be at the end of the year. Just think we have another nine weeks left.  I took the jump, gave up my basal and implemented 90 minutes of Reader’s Workshop and 30 minutes of Literature Stations/Guided Reading. 

The books we read and our experiences shape who we are.  What is your text lineage? 

First graders that have had lots of experiences with books can begin their text lineage.  Stay tuned to pics of my student’s “Powerful Books”.

Friday, March 30, 2012


         Thank you! Thank You! I am overjoyed by the love being sent!  This has shown me that I have definitely made the right choice to join the blog world. I have so much to learn and to share.  I look forward to this journey.
       My blog would not be a reality without Diana's wonderful help from Custom Blog Designs. She took my thoughts and created a masterpiece!  Please give her a shout if you are interested in adding to your blog or starting one!
   Happy Friday!  All of you have made my Friday!

Thursday, March 29, 2012


I am so excited to be a part of the blog world! I have been so inspired by the many blogs I have followed. My teaching has been greatly impacted by the wonderful ideas I have found this year. Last Saturday, I attended a NC Bloggers Meet Up that was hosted by Randi from "Teach it With Class". I was so inspired that I decided to begin my blog journey.
Teaching is my passion! I feel blessed each and every day to be able to work with first graders. My goal is to create bookworms. First Grade has to be the most exciting grade to teach. My students typically come in as non readers and leave as bookworms! It is truly powerful to see this transformation.
I look forward to sharing, collaborating and learning with each of you along this blog adventure. Thanks for taking the time to stop by.

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