Monday, October 29, 2012

Linked Up to Thank Soldiers

Natalie over at Teachery Tidbits posted a few weeks ago about a local radio station that is collecting letters to be delivered to soldiers who are deployed over the holiday.

I was a military wife for 9 1/2 years. I spent 8 months of my first year of marriage alone in Mississippi while my husband was deployed, had to watch my husband miss our son's first Christmas, first steps, and first birthday (among many other firsts!), and delivered my baby girl while he was in Iraq. Needless to say, this campaign has a special place in my heart. 

Last week, we talked about formatting a friendly letter, we wrote a sample letter as a class, and then I walked them through writing a letter to a soldier. I had tears in my eyes the whole time they were reading them aloud. Here are a few:

The deadline is Friday, but if you have a few minutes to spare today or tomorrow, please, please, please head over to Natalie's blog, check out the details, and get those letters sent. 


Sunday, October 28, 2012

Hey, Good Lookin'! Whatcha Got Cooking? A NEW Linky!

Before I get to the deliciousness I want to invite you to join in this weekly {hopefully!} linky party where we can share recipes that have survived our kitchens.

With my current mom-teacher schedule, I'm always looking for meals I can be proud to put on the table. And seriously I don't think I can live with another night of Mickey Mouse chicken nuggets and steamed broccoli....blah!

So link up and share what you've been cookin'!

Use your recipe title when you link up so we can browse easily!

Here's what we had this week:

Creamy Spicy Corn Chowder with Chicken
Picture of Creamy Spicy Corn Chowder with Chicken Recipe  
Photo from

You can click the photo to be redirected to this recipe I found on

To start I cooked the bacon in a large stock pot until it was nice and crispy. I removed the bacon and added onion, potato, red pepper, corn, salt, and pepper. 

*I omitted the jalapeno called for in the recipe and didn't have any thyme, but it was still delish. There wasn't enough fat from the bacon so I had to add a bit of olive oil to the pot. 

After sauteing for about 5-6 minutes I took 1/2 of that mixture and pureed it in my food processor. 

I added the mixture back to the stock pot along with the milk, broth, and chicken. The rotisserie chickens were looking extra wimpy when I was grocery shopping for this meal so I just cooked up some well seasoned chicken breasts that I cut into bite sized pieced and cooked beforehand. 

My husband was salivating over this one...which does not happen often. He was so sad when the leftovers were gone. This probably would freeze well too. 

Happy Eating!     

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Scrumptious Subtraction

I'm so pleased to say that my class plowed through subtraction of large numbers like all-stars! Yes, we had a few bumps on the road, but after grading today's math quiz I can see that they're really shining now. {insert lots of smiles here}

So....we'll be moving on to multiplication next week, but we didn't get to do my Scrumptious Subtraction activity I put together this weekend. {boo!}

It was sitting on my desk today and one sweet darling saw it and said, "Oooh, I wanna do that. That looks like fun." 

And there it is folks...the headlines read:

A Third Grader Says This is Fun!  

Get a copy here.

Monday, October 22, 2012


I spent a few hours this weekend coming up with some activities to help my third graders review verbs. 

Here is a verb sort activity that I created to help review verb tense. I need to work on another activity for irregular verbs. Hopefully that will be coming soon. 

This memory game is to help with remembering the helping verbs we've learned this year. I was thrilled when it only took minutes to whip up. 

Since I'm STILL not on TpT (crazy lame, I know!), I'll go ahead and email this out to you if you'd like it.

*As of 10/24/12 I am on TpT so check out these activities here. That didn't take long {wink!}
  Happy Monday everyone!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Sunday's Simple Supper- Un-Bourbon Chicken Burritos

Last week I got a new slow cooker from Costco so I was on the lookout for some great slow cooker recipes. 

Recipe and Photo from

I found this yummy sounding recipe for Un-Bourbon Chicken on the Cozi website. Click the photo to be redirected to the recipe. 

NOTE: It called for bone-in chicken pieces, but gave the option of using boneless, skinless chicken breasts, which is what I went with. 

Oh my goodness! It was delicious. The chicken shredded so beautifully and the flavor was amazing. On night one we ate it over rice with some steamed vegetables, and it was okay. In my opinion there wasn't a good rice/juice ratio. 

On night two, I decided to put the meat into a burrito, with all the fixings: black beans, cheese, avocado, salsa, and sour cream. My bonus-mom (I've never been fond of the term step-mom), makes the most amazing chicken burritos and the meat has a very similar flavor to this recipe. Mine were almost as good as hers.

Next time, I'd skip the rice meal all together and go straight for the burritos. It was an incredible reprieve from the traditional beef/taco packet burrito...a go-to meal in many a household, including mine!

Happy eating everyone. Be sure to let me know if you give it a try!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Classroom Website Linky

Brenda over at Primary Inspired is hosting a Classroom Website Tour Linky. She wants to know what we include on our site and how we use the website.

You can click the picture below to be transported to the wonderful world of Mrs. G's Third Grade (still a work in progress!). Browse around. I'd love to hear suggestions for things I might add, but I'd also love to hear what you like.

If you're interested in starting a website you can checkout my video tutorial for Weebly websites by going here.

To check out Brenda's linky and join the fun click below.


Monday, October 15, 2012

I'm Talking!- A Thesaurus Rap

One of my favorite lessons that I took from my mentor teacher was this thesaurus rap. She did it with a 4th grade GATE group and I've done it with 3rd graders. It works a bit better with the higher grades, but I've still enjoyed it. 

After putting students in pairs or small groups, I assign each group a very basic word. Some that I used this year were: mad, sad, happy, nice, big, and small. 

Students use a thesaurus to find 13 synonyms for the assigned word. Using the following template, they fill in the synonyms to create a thesaurus rap.

___________ !
I’m talking ___________!
I’m talking ___________!
I’m talking ___________,
___________, ___________!
I’m talking ___________, ___________, ___________, ___________, ___________!
I’m talking ___________,
___________, ___________!
I’m talking ___________!

When they finish, it might look like this:

Happy !
I’m talking joyful!
I’m talking ecstatic!
I’m talking glad,
content, pleased!
I’m talking delighted, blissful, cheerful, exultant, thrilled!
I’m talking elated,
overjoyed, exhilarated!
I’m talking happy!

Make sure that the first and last word of the poem is the assigned word. Also, if there are not enough synonyms for the original word, then I have them choose one of the synonyms they do have to look up. For example, if the word happy didn't have enough synonyms, I'd have them look up delighted or glad. That would usually help them fill in all of the slots.

My students had a blast rappin' out their I'm Talking! poems. Fun was had by all. I even uploaded audio files to my class website so parents could hear!
**If anyone has an easier workaround for Blogger that doesn't involve creating a movie file, I'd love to edit this post to include an audio file.**

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Sunday's Simple Supper- White Chicken Chili

I have not been blessed with the ability to be a super duper working mom. It's actually quite hard for me. Some of you moms out there make it look way too easy. Y'all must share how you do it!

As a stay at home mom I loved cooking. It was my most favorite time of the day. I could retreat into the kitchen, my honey would play with the kids, and for just a moment my mind could wander. It was such a breath of fresh air in my crazy, hectic day. 

Now, as a working mom my days are even crazier and more hectic, and trying to plan and prepare meals has been a nightmare ever since I started teaching.

These days I'm always on the lookout for meals that are quick and easy and that are appealing to the pickiest child on the planet, because I swear he sits at my dinner table every night! God bless you other mothers out there who also have picky eaters. 

Here is a recipe that my family loved. When I say "my family" please note that I exclude my picky prince since he doesn't even eat mac and cheese...what kind of child doesn't eat mac and cheese!?

White Chicken Chili
link to original recipe:
*Print out the recipe and then see my adaptations below

Notes on Ingredients:
- Personally, there was way too much onion. I'd do half next time.
- It calls for 3 cups of chicken, but I just diced up 2 large chicken breasts and made sure to season them well with some salt, pepper, and Susie Q's.
- I only had 2 4-oz cans of green chile and that was plenty.
- I went just a bit shy of a full tablespoon of the cumin.
- The jalapeno was omitted for my family.

Note on the Preparation:
- I didn't realize that it was supposed to simmer for an hour, so instead of adding all of the ingredients in step 2, I added everything except the beans and broth so that I could cook the chicken until it was almost done. Then I added the broth and beans and only simmered long enough to cook the chicken through.