Monthly Archives: September 2012

My Favorite Freebie {I’m Proactive- A 7 Habits Craftivity}

I’m a little late in the game BUT, I’m linking up today with the 2nd Grade Pad  for super fun “My Favorite Freebie Linky Party”!  With all of the things you have to pay for as teachers, isn’t it SO nice when you can get what you need for free?

My favorite freebie that I’ve made so far is my “I’m Proactive {A 7 Habits Craftivity}” :

I'm Proactive {A 7 Habits Craftivity}


It is my favorite because:

I can’t get enough of those 7 Habits!  They are such great principles for our students to learn at an early age.  I TRUELY believe that if kids can learn these habits now, when they’re young, they will be better equipped to tackle all things in their adult worlds.  Plus, those little kids in these cutouts are super cute and students can make them to resemble themselves.

How to use it:

You can just print out the templates and trace them onto the color of paper you would like!  I usually read chapter one in the book “The 7 Habits of Happy Kids” by Sean Covey and then implement this “I’m Proactive” activity.

"I'm Proactive" Steps

“I’m Proactive” Craftivity Steps

I also brainstorm with the students to help them create their “I’m proactive and take the first step when I…” page.

"I'm Proactive" writing page

There are 2 different writing line styles included for differentiated learning.

You can click on any of the pictures or here to pick up your “I’m Proactive” 7 Habits Craftivity today.  For more great freebies head on over to the 2nd Grade Pad!

Aspire to Inspire!

-Michaela 🙂


2 HUGE Teacher Giveaways!

TpT Giveaway

Who doesn’t love a good giveaway??? Umm….and who doesn’t love 2 HUGE giveaways??  I have the privilege of being a part of 2 awesome giveaways that are going on right now.  You have the opportunity to win 2 different items of your choice from my Teachers Pay Teachers store and over 63 different items combined from these 2 sites. You have 3 more days to enter. Wahoo!

First, head on over to Liv to Teach for her 42 product 500 Followers Giveaway!

Liv to Teach Giveaway

Liv to Teach Giveaway!

OK, I hope you’ve saved some energy, now head over to Teacher’s Toolkit.  Oooo I hope you win!

Teacher's Toolkit Giveaway

Teacher’s Toolkit 100 Followers Giveaway

Love isn’t love, ’til you give it away!  i{heart}giving!  Be on the lookout for some more great giveaways, and chances that you can be involved in some great outreach/giving projects for some schools in need.

Teacher Feature Tuesday – Meet Shanyn!


Hi Everyone and Welcome to Teacher Feature Tuesday! I really wanted to reach out and get to know different teachers from everywhere and thought you all probably did too! This week’s Teacher Feature is the lovely Shanyn from Coffee, Kids, and Compulsive Lists. Shanyn was one of the first blogs I ever did a giveaway for and she is fabulous. What’s even better is that she’s from Australia (Amy Howard, if you’re reading this, that Australia shout out is for you too!).

So everyone, let’s meet Shanyn!


Meet Shanyn from Coffee, Kids, and Compulsive Lists.

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

I am in my third year of teaching in the beautiful state of Queensland in Australia. I taught first grade for two years and this is my first year of second. I’m really enjoying the move from first to second. It has helped me reflect on what I would do differently if I were to teach first again. I have recently built and moved into my very first home with my wonderful partner (which has been a WHOLE journey on its own).

Why did you become a teacher?

Honestly, I had no idea what I wanted to do when I left high school. I knew I wanted to study and people had always told me I’d make a good teacher. I ended up applying for my Bachelor in Primary Education and, although I didn’t always enjoy studying and wasn’t necessarily the best at it, I have never looked back. As soon as I started doing practical experiences as a student teacher I knew I was in the right profession.

What is your favorite part of teaching?

I love getting to know the children. Each child is different, comes from a different background and brings something different to the classroom. I also love to see how far they’ve come. Teaching is so ‘non-stop’ that we often forget to stop and reflect on the distance traveled – academically and behaviourally.


A great display of how Shanyn monitors her Daily 5 groups! Click on the picture to read more about it.

What is one thing you can’t live without in the classroom?

I can’t live without whiteboard pens, sharpies and books. I only discovered how great sharpies are this year!

Give us your #1 Tip for Teachers.

Sorry! I can’t just give one tip!

Tip #1: Get to know your kids. Research as much as you can before your first day so that you have some background on them. I like to do up a spreadsheet of name, birth date, religion, whether they speak English as a second language, if they have learning difficulties or disabilities and even their grade from the previous year. It gives me a rough idea on how I can group children for literacy and math.

Tip #2: New teachers: I’m not sure how it works overseas but in Queensland it can be pretty tough to get a job as a graduate. I didn’t have fantastic university results but I worked extremely hard to put together a good portfolio and CV. I put my own name out there and handed out resumes to as many schools as I could. That is how I ended up getting my job.

I could give SO many more tips but I had better leave some for others!


Shanyn’s painted classroom window of the Parliament House (she paints them to link to what the students are learning about…sooo talented)!

What is your favorite children’s book?

How can you have just one favourite children’s book? I love to read ‘Ruthie and the (not so) teeny tiny lie’ by Laura Rankin with the kids. It has a nice message for the little ones and can prompt some great meaningful conversations.

What’s your favorite product that you have for sale on TpT?


BOLD Packet

I think my favourite product at the moment would have to be my B.O.L.D Speaking an Presenting Skills Bulletin Display. I had some trouble encouraging and teaching my class to use good oral presentation skills and wanted to create something that taught them specific skills. You can read about it here


Thanks so much Shanyn for sharing with us! Isn’t it so great that she doesn’t have just one fav child’s book…that is ME to a T! Head on over to Coffee, Kids, and Compulsive Lists and she what other great ideas Shanyn has in store. If you would like to be a part of our Tuesday Teacher Feature comment below or send me an e-mail. We would LOVE to get to know you better too!

September 11 Craftivities

Everyday Heroes

Everyday Heroes {Craftivities for September 11, Memorial Day, and Veteran’s Day}

I’m linking up today with Erica Bohrer to share some September 11 Activity Ideas.

It’s always been tough for me to teach my students about September 11 and what happened that day.  Knowing that most of the students at school weren’t even born yet, makes it even more difficult.

I do however feel like it’s such an important date to remember and to help our kids relate to on an age appropriate level.

One of my favorite books on the topic that I’ve read for years to my students is “September 12th:  We Knew Everything Would Be Alright” Written by the Masterson Elementary Students.  This book is perfect for the younger grades and covers just enough of the topic that I feel is right for this age.

September 12 Book

I created some Hero Craftivities {Firefighter, Police Officer and Military} to go along with reading this book, that your students can create.  There is also a different hero writing prompt to accompany each craft. (Don’t you just LOVE the mustache’s?!?! I think they’re my favorite part.)

Everyday Heroes Crafts

Policeman, Firefighter, and Military Hero Craftivities

You can find them at my TpT store.

How do you teach your students about 9/11?

Remembering 9/11

Aspire to Inspire,

Michaela 🙂

Influence Conference {meet & greet}

Influence Conference Meet and Greet
I can’t believe I’m doing this!  A few months ago my sister-in-law (who happens to be the fabulouso blogger from Beginner Beans) found out about the Influence Conference and asked me if I’d like to go too.  It sounded like a lot of fun at the time, but October seemed so far off that I told her yes, and then didn’t think much about it for a while.  Now here I am in September and I’ve bought my ticket to attend this amazing sounding conference with amazing sounding speakers in an amazing sounding place…and I’m a little nervous (and a little amazed…apparently).

The Influence Conference is set up to be a conference for bloggers and people in general who want to find out how to influence this world for Christ in a big way and in a way that utilizes all of the wonderful technological advances that we have in this day and age.  We also get to meet hundreds of other women who are striving for the same thing.  WOW!

So today, I’m linking up with the Influence Conference Blog in a little Pre-Conference “Meet & Greet”.  Even if you aren’t attending the conference you may just learn a little something about me that you didn’t know before.
So here goes:

3 Get-to know-me things
1.  I love people!  That being said, I’m feeling a little shy about meeting everyone at this conference.  I used to pride myself in being outgoing, but I’m beginning to wonder if I’m becoming more introverted with age!  Hopefully this conference will help me step out of my comfort zone and meet a whole bunch of new friends.
2.  I’ve taught 1st and 2nd grades for almost a decade, and am taking this school year off to stay home with my 17 m/o daughter.  This is a huge leap of faith for me and has definitely had it’s ups and downs already in just getting into the schedule of being a Stay-At-Home Mom.  I’m hoping to really settle in and find ministry opportunities while being home.
3.  My family and I are moving into an Airstream trailer this next year!  My husband runs an online meal planning service (Veggie so the location in which he does his job is extremely flexible.  We’re both interested in living a more minimalist lifestyle and to concentrate our time, money, and talents on things for God.  I know we’re in for an adventure!  You can follow along on our family blog Livin’ Lightly.  So I will be downsizing my wardrobe, household items, SHOES!!! and much more these next couple of weeks.  Yikes!
I also LOVE music, playing guitar and being part of a Praise Team  at our church. (oops… I guess that’s 4!)

2 Things I’m looking forward to about the Conference
1.  I’m really looking forward to all of the people that I’ll have the opportunity to connect with and brainstorm ideas with.
2.  I can’t wait to listen to all of the presenters.  The list of speakers and break-outs looks just amazing (I know I’m going to have a hard time choosing what break-outs to go to!).

1 Thing I can’t leave home without
I really can’t leave home without my Burt’s Bees Chapstick!  Even if I’m just heading out on a run I have to have it!  I’m also connected at the hip with my water bottle (but there I go again, adding more to the list).

I’m really looking forward to meeting everyone and gaining more insight/focus into what direction this blog and other areas of my life are to go.
-Michaela Peterson 🙂