Thanks to Education World for use of my Mrs. Waffenschmidt illustration.

Thanks to Education World for use of my Mrs. Waffenschmidt illustration.
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Sunday, August 30, 2015

Could You Live in a Dome for 365 Days?

Here's a Bell Ringer to use in your classroom.

Six scientists have entered a dome, 36 ft. in diameter and 20 ft. tall, on the summit of Mauna Loa, Hawaii. They will stay inside the dome for 365 days!  Part of a NASA program(HI-SEAS or Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation) to study the effects on a long mission to Mars, the location mimics the landscape found on the planet Mars. The dome has six bedrooms, a bathroom, exercise area, dining area, kitchen and a lab. At some times, the scientists will conduct experiments outside the habitat but only while wearing space suits. 

Could you spend a year in a dome?

What would be three things you’d take along with you?

What would you miss the most?

What might be some issues living in such a dome with five other people?

What would be the first thing, you’d wish to do when you left the dome, 365 days later?

Write a diary entry about your first week in the dome.

Photograph from 

Have a wonderful school year!


Thursday, August 27, 2015

Guest Blog at Minds-in Bloom...Check it out

Thanks to Rachel Lynette for the opportunity to share a Back to School blog, 
"Got a Minute ,Two, or Five? It's on the homepage and can be found here, too: Check it out:

What ideas do you have when there is a bit of time left during your class?

Friday, August 14, 2015

It's a new school year and I'd like to share one thought...focus on the positive!

As a classroom teacher for 33 years, I know that there are days when this thought is difficult at best to accomplish, but it really is something to keep in mind...even on those difficult days.  Take a walk during your break, have some photographs of your kids, husband, significant other, something you can gaze upon to bring back your positive state of mind. Eat chocolate(for me-Butterfingers!)

Try to find something that happened during your day that brings a smile, not a frown, as you leave school to go home. There were many days, when I'd arrive home, dragging myself into the home, down with what may have happened that day. The negativity zapped my of my energies. It wasn't a good thing and certainly not healthy. It took me a while to realize...focus on the positive!

Another important thought as you begin your school year...try and align  yourself with positive teachers and other adults during the day. I remember having a team where at break time, two of the women would complain about the kids, the administration and everything else. I eventually stopped joining them at break time and started to walk. Stay clear of such negative people, they will only bring you down...  A few years later, I had several new team members, the negative teachers had left. WHAT a difference. When those of us on my new team would leave the building at the end of the day,we'd be laughing about something humorous that we'd experienced that day! What a difference this team made on my day and my life. So-seek out those that help you accomplish this goal-focus on the positive.

I wish you all a wonderful school year!

Anyone else have some thoughts for those teachers returning to the classroom?

Sunday, August 2, 2015


I am so excited that my THINGY LETTER Clipart is finally available.

From Utah to Colorado, to New York to New Jersey, and around my home and inside my garage, once I started I saw letters of the alphabet all around me!

Use my THINGY letters to have kids write spelling words, vocabulary words, to make Mother’s Day/Father’s Day cards or as an art activity!

Have students try and guess what some of the THINGY LETTERS are.( I've included a key) 

* I have both a color photograph THINGY LETTERS as well as a black/white version...

Just in time for those looking for new clipart options for BACK TO SCHOOL!


Also, check out the TpT Back to School Sale, August 3-4.  Save up to 28% on all purchases. Promo code: BTS15