Potato Chips and a Giveaway

How was your weekend? Mine was refreshing. I needed it. I mentioned in my last post, my kiddos had a pretty tough week last week. They wore me out!

They were struggling with talking non-stop, manners, respect, rudeness, & lack of kindness. (I ran out of synonyms!) Seriously, all sorts of things that shouldn't be happening after being in school for 100 days. It was so tough. I was sad.

While I was taking attendance one day, someone actually cheered because another little, not so popular, someone was absent.

Another little someone decided it was hilarious and worth sharing with the whole class when another little someone had an *accident*. 

I had hit a boiling point. I do believe more of my time was spent disciplining than it was with lessons. Where did my sweeties go? Where was their
A few weeks ago I won a copy of Maria Dismondy's new book in a giveaway over at Primary Graffiti.
I hadn't had a chance to read it to my kiddos yet, but last week was just screaming for a book about kindess and empathy.

Let me tell you peeps... it could not have been more perfect. Not only was it a great book, it opened up a lot of discussions. My kids were drawing connections all over the place! It was fabulous.

I've been a fan of Maria Dismondy's books because although they are about building positive character traits - they aren't sappy or boring. The characters "feel" real. The stories are engaging.

The lead character in this adorable picture book, Champ, is a champ in a lot of things - but not being sensitive to others.

How perfect for the monsters children who struggled with behavior that inhabited my room last week! 

Champ learns from Walter - the child he looked down upon - what it takes to be a friend and what it means to be deserving.

It was a perfect book to use with the class with a lesson on empathy. It helped us discuss the importance of always considering our actions and how it would feel to be in someone else's shoes. I highly recommend getting your hands on a copy. It is definitely a keeper. AND her site has a readers guide download available with all sorts of goodies for the kids to do. It's awesome.

I read this book to the kids on Thursday. Friday we had a BEYOND perfect day... just sayin'...

Next week will be filled with random Valentine's activities (shoved in between core materials... don't want to upset any curriculum police detectives out there who might be investigating). Our writing process activity this week will culminate in this craft.
Isn't she cute?

I've updated this file to include a more detailed writing lesson. If you already purchased it, head over and re-download the newest version.

I'm offering a GIVEAWAY on the pack in my Teacher's Notebook store, too. Two of my Teacher's Notebook Shop followers will win the unit.

For your chance to win - click HERE

The mini-lesson and craft are available in both of my stores - head on over to check it out.

I try to plan ahead as often as possible. Read Across America is coming up REAL soon. One of my favorite activities to do during that time is an author/book study, which ties into the importance of reading, Dr. Seuss' birthday, and our study on the pond habitat. Multi-tasking at its best.
Need your own book reading and bathing suit and hat wearing frog? Click the pic to check it out. Leap into a Good Book - Celebrate Reading is available in both of my stores.

Two long weekends in a row for me! Tomorrow our district has a holiday for Lincoln's birthday. Then another long weekend next week for President's Day. =)   Since Spring Break isn't until April for us, these long weekends will be nice!

Enjoy your week, peeps!


  1. I will definitely have to check that book out for my kiddos-I don't know if it's a mid-year crisis or what but your descriptions sound very familiar! Always looking for resources to help in that area-thanks for sharing!


  2. Sorry to hear about your class:( Thats no fun.
    Thank you for the book recommendation, though.
    I tried to enter your giveaway, but is it for US citizens only? I was directed to tick a US resident box...but maybe I'm mixed up?
    Hope this week is better for you!

  3. Kindness and empathy are always in style! I'm so glad that you were able to find both in Maria's CHAMP.

    And while I'm here, let me just say that I love popping by your cheerful blog!


  4. I feel your pain. Could it be early spring fever? I'm already looking for that book. Thanks for the tip.
    Primary Paradise

  5. Oh, I think I need that book!! My class is super sweet, as a whole, but I do have some stinkers that can laugh at another's expense. :(
    Your crafts coming up are WAY TOO CUTE!! Love!!

  6. LOVE the cute frog craft and Lulu IS cute too! I think you are going to have a better week! I hope so!

  7. I too won the Potato Chip Champ book by Maria and my first graders LOVED it! Her books are fantastic for teaching character traits. The free unit guides are pretty wonderful too!
    Ms. Marciniak's First Grade Critter Cafe
    Celebrate and Join my 100th Follower Ultimate Giveaway: Skype Author Visit!


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