I Was Born in a Small Town

small town

I was born in a small town

and I teach in that same small town.

small town

Okay… so that is not quite how John Cougar Mellencamp’s song goes but that is how I sing it in my head.  Shortly after college the road of life led me back to the same small rural Illinois town I was born, raised, and educated in. I was a fresh-out-of-college-grad and put my application in at quite a few schools.  Imagine my surprise when I was hired in my hometown district. This tiny town is the inspiration for my blog…Hometown Happy Teacher. This is where my story begins and why chapters are still being written.

A small glimpse at a few of Hometown Happy Teacher’s chapters…

  • My grade school has only two hallways and the high school across the street…one hallway!
small town
Me- in high school!
  • My 2nd grade classroom is my childhood 3rd grade classroom.
  • My window to the world each and every day is a peaceful view of agriculture.
small town
(this is taken through a screen-hence the blur)
  • My 1st grade teacher became my colleague, mentor, and friend 15 years later.
  • I still pull out some vintage Spartan wear every now and again. Once a Spartan… always a Spartan!small town
  • I have taught 2 of my own 3 children. (Child #3 will be in 2nd grade this upcoming year!)
  • When I was in elementary school I didn’t enjoy reading or literature at all. Now I love to read! My master’s degree even has an endorsement in reading. My goal is make every child that comes through my door a reader.
  • My small town has a strong sense of community.  They take pride in their strong relationships and shared values. When members of our community are ill, in mourning, struggling, or afflicted then each one chips in and helps out in every way possible.
    small town
    Showing support for our school nurse.

    small town
    One of own will not fight alone.
small town
Students paying their respects to our town fire chief during his funeral processional.

My story continues. I have so many more chapters to write in my happy hometown and this pleases me beyond measure.

small town

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Great Glue Debate

the great glue debate

If you are a teacher like me then you know all about the great glue debate.  You know the struggles of having to deal with dried, clogged, or gluey blobs stuck in bottles. Quite possibly you have become very particular about your choice of adhesives and methods of applying them. I will share with you my favorites on my quest for the best.

the great glue debate

glue bottles

I have spent countless classroom hours pulling the little orange heads off glue bottles and unclogging wads of glue. I even used a Pinterest idea and sprayed WD40 inside the lids to prevent clogging; however, I still had no luck.  Then I found the Crayola Washable No Drip School Glue bottles. This bottle has been a huge classroom time saver for me. The lid screws on and has a pin-like attachment that slides down in the top that prevents glue from getting clogged. I can even refill these bottles year after year. I am happy to report…not one single clog this entire year!


Glue Sticks

If a student makes it through a whole tube before it dries out (or loses the cap) then he/she deserves a Brag Tag or an award of some sort. (You can download my glue brag tag freebie by clicking the image below.) In my room, I find the purple ones are the best. The color allows students to see the areas they have already applied the glue versus where they still need to apply it. I tell them to apply the glue around the perimeter of the object and make a big X in the middle before gluing it down.  I also serve as the classroom glue stick dictator. A student cannot throw away an old glue stick until I have inspected it. You see, my students want to throw it away if the stick becomes lodged in the cap or if it is waaayyy down in the tube. I generally find that the glue sticks have plenty of glue life left. You would not believe a number of glue sticks I have left at this point in the year in comparison to last year!

the great glue debate

Glue Gun

I finally purchased a glue gun stand this school year. I am not sure why I never did before. It holds my glue gun in place while it heats up and has a drip pad too. Every time I go back to purchase another one for home they are sold out!

tips and tricks

If you are not a fan of glue bottles or glue sticks then maybe one of these tricks below might be a better choice for you.

glue dauber– This handy idea is simple and cheap…empty bingo daubers for $4.18 (at Walmart) plus liquid glue equals glue daubers for no mess interactive journals, cut and paste word sorts, and paper crafts. The gluing possibilities are endless!

great glue debate

glue sponge-Be sure and check out Lucky Littler Learners blog post about how to make these handy little things. You can’t go wrong having a glue sponge container at each table in your classroom!

great glue debate

carpe carrie

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April Pinterest Pick 3 Linky

Pinterest Pick 3

I love the monthly Pinterest Pick 3 Linky hosted by Inspired Owl, PAWSitively Teaching , and Just Reed. I get TONS of ideas to use in my classroom and at home with my own three children. Currently, I am scouring Pinterest for lessons on poetry, Earth Day, and plants and seeds for school and recipes, gardening, and spring/summer fashion for home. Here are my top 3 picks for April.

Pinterest Pick 3

Pinterest Pick 3

Just look at this color poem! To think  I actually have some paint chips in my art closet that a friend gave me last year too. I made a graphic organizer to help my students brainstorm ideas before they publish their final project. You can grab the graphic organizer below for FREE.

Pinterest Pick 3

Pinterest Pick 3

Pinterest Pick 3

I simply cannot wait to hatch chicks in my classroom this month. I saw this craft and instantly knew we will have to incorporate it into our unit. I am in love with the little fuzzy chicks too. I saw those little chicks at Easter time, however, now I cannot remember what store they were at!

Pinterest Pick 3

Pinterest Pick 3

How adorable is this craft for Earth Day? Newspaper+watercolors+creativity=adorable craft!

Thanks for dropping by. I hope you find something useful. Be sure to check out all the other blogs to get some Pinspiration for the month of April.

carpe carrie

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Five for Friday (Linky Party-April 1st)

Five for Friday

Five for Friday

Five for Friday is a weekly teacher linky party over at Doodle Bugs Teaching where you post five random things from today or this past week and on your blog.

Five for Friday

Five for Friday

This week brought us a nice long spring break for the three kiddos and I. We spent Easter weekend with our families hunting eggs and eating delicious food. Who doesn’t like an egg hunt? As you can see, my youngest had fun. The oldest two REALLY enjoyed finding eggs with $$$ in them (Ha, teens!).

Five for Friday

Five for Friday

We spent some time visiting Abraham Lincoln’s home, museum, and tomb in Springfield, Illinois. It was a fun day hanging out with friends and my children while learning a little history.

Five For Friday

Five for Friday

I celebrated my 41st birthday this past week and got this adorable lawn ornament from my mom as a gift. I LOVE turtles. Think about it…you can’t get anywhere in life without sticking your neck out!

Five for Friday

Each year that I get the chance to celebrate another year of life I feel blessed.  Blessed with good health, a wonderful and healthy family, and a job that I love. I want to celebrate my year of life by offering others something…a free item of choice from my TPT store. All you have to do is enter the Rafflecoptor below. That is all! I’ll announce the winner on Monday, April 4th by email.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Five for Friday

Five for Friday

I got a chance to finish up aligning activities to go along with the story Missing: One Stuffed Rabbit by Maryann Cocca-Leffler. This story was originally in my old, old reading series years ago. In the story the class has a stuffed rabbit that gets to go home with a student each weekend. The student then writes in the rabbit’s journal about all the weekend’s events.  When I started this activity, 14 years ago, I couldn’t find a stuffed rabbit locally so I bought a stuffed German Shepard. The class named it Skip and he travels with his journal. The students love it! The best part…showing the graduating 8th grade students their journal entries at this time of year as they are reminiscing about their elementary school years. Priceless I tell ya!

Five for Friday
TPT-Activities

carpe carrie

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