My students have had such a hard time alphabetizing words and using dictionaries and thesauruses. I created this file to help them with these important skills. Included in this center file is an alphabetizing activity, guide word activity, and a vocabulary 4 square activity. I'm hopeful they will master using dictionaries and thesauruses! 
My students love practicing skills like these in centers rather than completing  a worksheet. It makes it so much more meaningful and fun for them when things are hands- on! Add a themed bucket, basket, or bag to any center for the students to draw the cards from, and it becomes even more fun. I have found that adding a game board keeps everyone on their toes and more accountable. They love competition! I was lucky to find plastic mail boxes and felt bags at Target. 
And here are the adorable mailboxes!
Here are some pictures of the different centers. Each student in this center has a plastic postal service mailbox to put their "love letter" in after they complete the Vocabulary 4-Square for that word! They are drawing the cards from a metal mailbox. 
Here is the alphabetizing center. I always laminate and label everything. 
I put the cards for each center and the directions inside of a 5x7 envelope. I purchased the pack at Staples. The envelopes are labeled so each activity can be easily passed out. Everything for this center goes inside a file folder with a pocket. I also bought these at Staples. 
It's a little early to be thinking about Valentine's Day, but I wanted to be ahead of the game! And Target's Dollar Spot sells out of things so quicky! 
Enjoy your day!
Hello! I am linking up with Molly from Lucky to be in First for her Fabulous Freebies on the Fifteenth link up! 
I have a little Valentine's Freebie and you can find it HERE. It is owl themed (of course!) and has two treat bag labels, a set of heart shaped pencil, Pixy Stix, or Crazy Straw toppers, and bookmarks. I buy the clear cellophane 4x6 treat bags at the craft store. I plan to fill them with a Valentine pencil, eraser, a cute mini notebook, and candy. I have had a hard time finding Pixy Stix, but I finally found them and crazy straws at the dollar store. I hope you and your students are able to use these!
Have a wonderful weekend! I am definitely going to recharge my batteries!
I'm excited to link up with Tara from Fourth Grade Frolics for her January Monday Made It! I'm a little late to the party, but it's been a crazy week back to school! I know everyone can relate! I am sharing school related things, because that's all I have had time for lately.

I made a little freebie New Year's pack for my kiddos for the first day back, and I'm so glad I did! It was just what we needed to get back into the groove of school after two weeks off! I planned New Year's activities for the entire first day. I will blog more about that another day!
You can check out the freebie pack here Freebie Happy New Year Pack. My kiddos loved the balloon Pixy Stix, of course! There are also treat bag toppers and bookmarks included. 
We also spent the day goal setting and learning about idioms. I will be blogging about both of those soon! 

Be sure to check out Tara's blog and the other Monday Made Its here.
Happy New Year! I added this little freebie pack here to my TPT store this morning and I wanted to share with you. I plan to do a full day of fun New Year's activities with the kiddos when we return to school. I know that first day back after being off might be hard for some of them, so I'm planning some fun New Year's goal setting and other activities, and this little pack will be a fun addition! There are treat bag toppers, bookmarks, and balloon toppers that can be used with pencils, Pixy Stix, or Silly Straws. Double sided tape will work well with the balloons in the file (I will cut off the string) and the treat bag toppers fit on a 4 inch width clear treat bag- just fold and staple to the top! I hope you can use some of what is in the file!
Enjoy the rest of your break if you are off! This second week is flying by for me!
Happy New Year!
I'm joining Kickin' it in Kindergarten for her Teachers of Instagram Linky Party. I am so thankful that I have found such an amazing group of teachers to follow on Instagram. There is so much inspiration and goodness on there! If you would like to follow me or see some of the teachers I follow, click on my Instagram link to the right. 
My first favorite photo of 2013 is my blog, of course! I never dreamed I would have a blog, but decided in the fall to start one up. I love the design, and of course the owls! I think it will be fun to have this blog to reflect on. I have been so inspired by other teacher bloggers, and really want to give back all I can.
My second favorite photo is of a gift a kind Instagram friend sent me. She won the elf I was giving away, and sent me the sweetest thank you gift in the mail. She always posts the most uplifting Mary Engelbreit quotes and the cutest wardrobe photos! Thank you so much @keepcalmandteachk! You are a blessing on Instagram!
My last and most special Instagram photo of 2013 is of my beautiful, sweet dog Zoe. Zoe quietly passed away a year ago on December 11th. She was our first pet as a married couple, and really our first child. She was the easiest dog to take care of (minus all the fur!). I look at that sweet face and tear up, but I am so thankful that she had such a long, healthy life, and passed away peacefully. This is the Zoe I will always remember!
I truly believe Instagram and the many blogs I read have made me a better teacher. During these teaching times of standards and test, test, testing, I am constantly reminded of what really matters and what my true purpose is. I am so thankful! 

Head over to Simply in KInder to check out her teaching blog round up. You can link up and find new resources and teacher blogs to follow! 
Happy New Year! Let's make 2014 the best ever!

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