Tuesday, June 21, 2016

The Children Who Loved Books

Have you read this book?
If not - you must run - yes RUN - to your nearest bookstore or library and get it.
Immediately.

The Children Who Loved Books is a heart-warming story about children who do not have a lot of material things, but they learn that if they have books and family, they have all that they need. It's a cute story with a wonderful message - and I love it so much that I've created some supplemental resources to help you incorporate this story in your classroom:

This 10-page print-and-go packet includes:
Reading Comprehension Quiz
This quiz includes a combination of short answer, true/false, and multiple choice questions. An answer key is included.
 Story Details Graphic Organizer 
Suggested answer key provided
 
An interactive notebook foldable for the students to use to record the books that they read:
Because you could use this foldable without the book - but why would you when the book is so wonderful?!? :) - I am making this a special FREEBIE for my faithful blog readers. Click here to download the foldable for FREE: 

Imagine If... Visualizing/Writing Activity
Family Reading Project
This optional take-home project asks families to read four books (or more!) together over the span of one moth. The student records the books he reads, the family members he reads with, and his favorite.

All of these activities are included in my fun, engaging, print-and-go packet:
You can purchase the book on Amazon - it's definitely one you'll want to add to your home or classroom library:

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Tackling the Toy Box Chaos



If you were to walk into my living room unannounced this is most likely what you would see:
You see, my son loves to dump his toy box out on the floor. 
Over and over.
And over again.

Anyone else relate?

And who do you think picks up all of the toys?
The 13-month-old?
I wish.
Nope - it all falls on this little mama.
I know the day will soon come when he can pick up after himself - and believe me, we're practicing - but that day is not today.

So one day I decided enough was enough.
It was time to 
TACKLE THE TOY BOX CHAOS!!!

Enter the main characters:
Plastic shoe box containers
I got a pack of 12 on Amazon for less than $2 each:
{can someone say bargain?!?)

I divided the toys into five different containers:
Then I used Avery address labels to put labels for each day of the work week:
Now, when we wake up in the morning, Hudson and I find today's box of toys on the shelf and pull it down. He loves flinging off the lid and digging into today's treasures. This way, he has fewer options and the toys seem more special since he only sees them once a week or so.
Plus it means that I'm only cleaning up about 1/5 of the toys that I usually do :)
Have you met Mr. Pig?
He's kind of the best! :)

But wait, you might be thinking - what about the weekends?
Weekends are special family time, so I didn't make separate bins for Saturday and Sunday - usually we're busy playing outside, spending time with friends, and going out to explore our beautiful city.
Plus Hudson has this special bin (fully approved by his hockey-loving Dad) filled with special Dad toys. This bin gets used a lot on the weekends:


So there you have it - a simple but effective way to organize the toys and cut down on the toy box chaos. Don't they look so neat and organized on Hudson's shelf:
I used the rest of my leftover plastic shoeboxes to organize other things:

  • Cups & containers
  • Outside toys
  • Summer sandals & hats
  • Bath toys
  • Measuring cups/spoons
  • Etc.

Another tip that one of my friends suggested was having a "Toy Time Out" bin - this is for toys that are being fought over during playdates (or with siblings). If the kids can't agree to share or compromise, then the toy gets put away for a little while. Now my son is too young to understand this, but I figured while I was printing labels, I'd make this one too :)

Do you have any other tips for organizing toys (and keeping them organized!)? I'd love to hear them - leave a comment below!

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Print-and-Go Activities for Father's Day

Father's Day is one week from today...ARE YOU READY?!?
One of my favorite funny stories about my dad is from when I was 11 or 12 years old. My mom was going out of town on a women's retreat with our church for the weekend and so my Dad was left in charge. He stopped by the grocery store on Friday afternoon to stock up on essentials we would need. He came in the door, arms full of grocery bags and a wide grin on his face:
"Guys! There was a sale!" he exclaims as he dumps out an entire grocery bag full of cans of tuna fish. We had the best time that night imaging all of the zany ways we could cook and consume all of that tuna. The best was when he looked at my brother and I very seriously and said,
"I've got it! We'll start the newest fad...PB&T sandwiches!" We both groaned and vowed never ever to eat a peanut butter and tuna sandwich :)

Dads are silly, strong, brave, hard-working, self-sacrificing, role models - and they deserve to be honored!

Looking for a fun and memorable craft to complete for Father's Day? Well, look no further - This packet includes a cute and meaningful PRINT-AND-GO craftivity for your students to complete. This fun booklet is intended to show appreciation for your students’ hard-working dads.
This booklet includes 4 pages:
1. "Happy Father's Day, Dad" Cover page (coloring)
2. "I think my dad is": 8 adjectives or phrases that describe your dad (writing)
3. My favorite thing to do with my dad is...": (writing)
4. A picture of me and my dad (drawing)
**I have also included an additional blank tie emplate if you would like your students to complete an additional customizable page.

Materials needed: Each student will need a copy of the four booklet pages, crayons and/or markers, scissors and a metal brad/brass fastener.

Full teacher and student directions are included:

This packet also includes full templates for Grandpas, Grandfathers, Papas, and Uncles.


p.s. If you need additional wording options (i.e. your kids call their father or grandfather something different than the options listed), please e-mail me and I'd be happy to customize the packet to fit your needs!

Make your lesson-planning a breeze this week and grab a copy of this cute craftivity for only $3!
Or you can plan ahead for next year and buy the Mother's Day/Father's Day craftivity bundle and save 20% :)

Looking for additional ideas for Father's Day?
Here are some of my favorite Father's Day books - perfect for your kiddos to read with their special Dads and Grandpas. Order today to be sure they arrive before Father's Day! :)


Here are some fun and easy Father's Day ideas by awesome bloggers:


Do you have a favorite story about your Dad? Or a fun craft or activity that you've done to celebrate Father's Day, either with your students or personal kiddos? I'd love to hear about it! Leave a comment below.

Happy (almost!) Father's Day!

Monday, June 6, 2016

Summer Days Giveaways! Enter on IG TODAY ONLY!

Whether you're starting your summer vacation or are clinging to the promise of freedom in a few short days, I've got some exciting news for you...

It’s time for SUMMER DAYS GIVEAWAYS! 

I am excited to loop with some of my favorite teacher friends this summer to bring you some awesome products from my store that you can win for yourself AND a teacher friend each week! 

Today's giveaway from my store includes two fun Math products:


Math Curse by Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith is one of my favorite books to read at the beginning of each school year. It tells the story of a young girl who wakes up to find that EVERYTHING is a math problem :). It's a cute way to opening up kids' eyes to the math in everyday life.

To supplement the book, I have created a fun and engaging teaching packet that includes graphic organizers, task cards, story problem writing, and more!

Here's a preview of what's included:


Interested in checking out the book:


The second packet you could WIN is my fun and functional
Use these fun and functional math-themed styled images as backgrounds when creating images for your blog, social media posts, product covers, and more! Simply add your text on your laptop, iPad, or photo and you're ready to go! These can be used for both personal and commercial use.

Here are some sample ideas of what you could use this styled photos for:
Here’s how you enter: Hop on over to my Instagram post
On the post:
1) Comment below by tagging a teacher friend. 
2) Follow my Instagram account 
3) Click on the picture to loop through to another chance to win a product for yourself and a teacher friend.  

There are 10 of us giving away away free products today, so make sure you loop through all of us and enter to win some awesome goodies! :)

The winners will be announced at 9pm EST tonight!

Friday, April 29, 2016

Get Your Kids Digging In Their Bibles {One Proverb a Day for a Month}

Get your kids digging in their Bibles - FREE reading calendars to read through Proverbs in a month. Blog post includes calendar options for both younger and older kids. Resource created by Jessica Lawler, "Joy in the Journey"

As a fifth grade teacher I was always on the lookout for ways to get my students reading their Bibles for themselves. One of the most important life skills you can encourage in your kiddos is the discipline of daily Bible reading. 

Dallas Willard said: "Bible reading is absolutely fundamental to spiritual formation."

I wholeheartedly agree.

The book of Proverbs has 31 chapters in it - perfect for one chapter per day for a month. Proverbs is filled with nuggets of wisdom - and the verses are very accessible for kids.

Since May is coming up (with 31 days) I thought I'd share a freebie with you to help your students (or personal kiddos) dig into the book of Proverbs.

These free packet includes a calendar with boxes to check off when your student has read the assignment. 

There are two calendar options included:
A. For younger kids: asks them to read a couple of verses from each chapter. 
B. For older kids: asks them to read a whole chapter each day.
Get your kids digging in their Bibles - FREE reading calendars to read through Proverbs in a month. Blog post includes calendar options for both younger and older kids. Resource created by Jessica Lawler, "Joy in the Journey"
Get your kids digging in their Bibles - FREE reading calendars to read through Proverbs in a month. Blog post includes calendar options for both younger and older kids. Resource created by Jessica Lawler, "Joy in the Journey"
















Click here to download the FREE calendar pages:
Get your kids digging in their Bibles - FREE reading calendars to read through Proverbs in a month. Blog post includes calendar options for both younger and older kids. Resource created by Jessica Lawler, "Joy in the Journey"
This calendar can be done again and again - there is so much richness in the book of Proverbs that your students could read it each month! Encourage them to pray about what verses God would highlight for them as they read.

Here are some other reading plans for kids/families:


Looking for more activities to get your kiddos digging into the book of Proverbs?

Dig into the wonderfully rich book of Proverbs with your students! "This Bible Boot Camp: Proverbs" packet is intended to challenge and engage your class – as well as get them diggin’ in their Bibles. This differentiated packet is perfect for classes with different ability levels and/or grades. Make your lesson planning a breeze! Resource created by Jessica Lawler, "Joy in the Journey"

Packet includes:
  • Note to the Teacher
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Hunting through the book of Proverbs
  • Categorizing Proverbs
  • Note-worthy Proverbs 
  • Visualizing Proverbs
  • Proverb-a-Day Calendars

*All activities include answer keys (if applicable)

The activities in this packet are DIFFERENTIATED – meaning there are 2 variations of each activity (A=easier B=more challenging). This was done to give teachers options when working with students with different ability levels or those teaching multiple grades. You can also choose to give your class the more rigorous activities when you have more class time allotted for the assignment. 

You can purchase this 25-page packet for only $5. Don't delay - make your lesson planning a breeze and watch your students dig into their Bibles like never before!

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Mother's Day Mirror Craftivity: New Pages Added!

Have you checked out my Mother's Day Craftivity: My Mom in the Mirror?
This packet includes a cute and meaningful PRINT-AND-GO craftivity for your students to complete. This fun booklet is intended to show appreciation for your students’ beautiful, hard-working moms.

I wanted to pop in and share a quick note that this packet has been UPDATED: By popular demand, I have updated my Mother's Day Craftivity to include options for all the special ladies in your students’ lives: Mom, Grandma, Grandmother, Nana, and Aunt
Also - if you need additional wording options, please e-mail me at joyinthejourneyteaching@yahoo.com and I'd be happy to accommodate you.

So go ahead - make your lesson planning a breeze! Purchase this 30-page print-and-go packet today!