Rainy Days & Freebies

Hey y’all! It has been a while. Between regular teaching obligations, trying to meet benchmark deadlines, and half marathon training, I haven’t had a whole lot of time to blog/work on TpT products. That all changed yesterday, though, when we had off of school! The fun continues today with another day off. Thankfully, our city hasn’t been hit too much with flooding (just two weeks — literally — of rain), but some of the more rural areas around the county have been affected by this crazy flood. So far, I’m not sure when we’ll be returning to school, but in the meantime, I am keeping busy with wedding planning and an OITNB binge (currently on season 3… not sure what I’ll do with myself when I finish it).

I have to say, one of the biggest perks of not having work has been a.) not packing lunch and b.) getting to sit down, eat, taste my food, and even read while doing so. If you teach, you understand this. Every day follows a typical routine: attempt to get 20 six-year-olds to powerwalk because you’re late to lunch; fail miserably; attempt to hustle 20 six-year-olds through the lunch line because you meant to eat your yogurt during planning but then you had to copy/laminate/call a parent so you didn’t and now you’re hangry; get everyone seated only to have 8 children holding up suspiciously sticky straws, GoGurt tubes, and impossibly sealed Thermoses; remind the two at the end to stop playing with their orange slices and eat them; wolf down two bites before having to clean up a spill; wolf down three more bites then remember you need to visit the bathroom because it’s now or never; begin the hot mess that is clean-up; and BOOM. Lunch is over.

Not today. Not yesterday. My lunch yesterday looked mysteriously joyful (possibly carries a subliminal message):

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I’ll just leave that there before I say one more thing. It’s…..

Totally Free Tuesday

Are you practicing distinguishing complete sentences versus fragments with your learners, or could they use a review? I’m introducing this activity whole-group this week, then putting in my word work center next week. It’s super versatile and great for getting all of your kids involved and moving around!

You can download the file here. Please remember to leave feedback!

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Totally Free Tuesday

Totally Free Tuesday

Happy Tuesday! The thought that tomorrow is hump day and the week half-over is lovely. This Tuesday I’m bringing to you a new product: my Writing Assessment Bundle for the Primary Grades. I talked last Friday on the blog about how intimidated I was by planning writing lessons for my grade level this quarter. After sitting down with the standards and district pacing guides and perusing the teacher blogosphere, I dove into it headlong and haven’t looked back since. My class’ motivation is my motivation here. 🙂 Each week, we delve into a new writing project. The first two weeks of school were devoted to creating biography class books about different students in our class. This week, we jumped into our first big project. After reading The Apple Pie Tree by Zoe Hall, we are working to write five steps for making apple pie. Each student will then make a mini-book with step-by-step directions. My hope is that on Friday (Grandparents’ Day!), we will be able to make our own apple pie. I still need to check if I can bring in my toaster oven for the project. Fingers are crossed! I know the project would bring writing, science, and math to life for the kiddos, so hopefully I can get the go-ahead.

Anyway, back to the (rather fast) evolution of this bundle. I needed a way to assess the students’ writing in a developmentally appropriate way that can play to each child’s strengths. At our school, first grade is the first year with numerical grades, and I didn’t want to use a rubric with a confusing format or weights that pretty much guarantee failure for the typical six-year-old. I also needed a quick conventions checklist to use for our SLO (Student Learning Objective) required by the district. Thinking I’d just go ahead and use what I had already created to develop checklists for use throughout the year, I made a list of the major writing projects primary students encounter. And that is what brings my bundle to you!

Writing Rubrics Cover

The bundle includes checklists for the following projects:

  • How-to
  • Persuasive/opinion
  • Personal narrative
  • Story
  • Informative

Each form also includes a student self-reflection. The bundle has a printer-friendly format of just student reflection sheets as well as a more broad conventions checklist for use across the curriculum. Also, you’ll find two checklists for each project. The first of each is for writing booklets of 1-3 sentences per page. The second is for all other projects.

Please download the product TODAY–it might not be free forever!–and please, please leave feedback so I can learn how to better serve my customers!

And remember what tomorrow is….

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Erin Condren Teacher Planner Review + A FREEBIE!

The Planner

Last week, I got an exciting delivery in the mail:

Erin Condren PlannerErin Condren Planner

My Erin Condren Teacher Lesson Planner!

I wasn’t sure if I could justify spending that much on a planner, but there was a sale. How was I supposed to turn that down? I’ve always been a Lilly girl, but I found last year that I just didn’t have enough space for everything. Enter Erin Condren. Let me just say, I am in love with this planner and the school year hasn’t even begun yet. I am an obsessive organizer and I don’t go anywhere without my precious planner… which will be especially true this year with wedding planning! Eek.

So, without further ado, here is my review of my beautiful little delivery.

Erin Condren Planner

The cover of the planner and the coils seem extremely durable, which is great because there is nothing more annoying than your coil unravelling and having your pages and/or cover half-hanging on for dear life. There is also a plastic ruler attached to the front, and you can customize the cover with your name and school (which I photoshopped out for safety reasons). I ordered the Bloom pattern in yellow, which is my favorite color.

FullSizeRender (18)The inside of the planner is super colorful and bright.

Erin Condren Planner

It also came with some cute little stickers.

Erin Condren PlannerThe tabs also seem sturdy and include:

  • Dates
  • Absent
  • Graph
  • Tabs for each month
  • Lessons
  • Checklists

Erin Condren Planner

This is a sample of a monthly spread page for December. The planner comes with sticky date dots, organized by month, for you to put in the planner. This can be helpful if you end up not using the planner during the year you ordered it in, but you do need to be careful putting the dots down. I accidentally started March on the wrong day and didn’t realize it until after I had put down all the other dots for that month.

Erin Condren Planner

This is your weekly lesson view, organized across the top by subject/period and down the side by day. I type my lesson plans, but I’m planning on jotting down my daily walkthroughs in this section for quick referencing throughout the day.

Erin Condren Planner

There is a full-sized, double-sided pocket folder at the back of the planner.

Erin Condren Planner

At the very end of the planner is a zipper bag for hanging on to smaller items. It came filled with some freebies and samples from the company.

I opted to have two clear plastic page protectors and an extra set of checklists inserted at the back of my planner, as well (not pictured). Also not pictured are the colorful stickers you can use on your monthly view. Three pages of stickers were included:

  • assembly
  • IEP
  • duty
  • staff meeting
  • furlough
  • holiday
  • two pages of blank stickers for you to customize

I plan on using my monthly view pages to keep track of work and personal commitments, and if I have an extra section in my weekly lesson planner view, I may use it as a “personal” column for scheduling wedding planning, half marathon training, and social events.

So long as the planner hold up well during the school year, I definitely think I will be sticking with Erin Condren next year. If you’re interested in ordering one for yourself, here is my referral link. If you order, I will receive $10 towards a future purchase. If you’re not a teacher, don’t despair! There are a ton of other adorable products. I have my eye on a desktop calendar, clipboard, and the wedding planner (so cute)! I haven’t bought a wedding planning binder yet. Other brides I’ve talked to said they never used theirs and instead opted to use WeddingWire or The Knot. However, I am very much a paper-and-pencil type of girl, so I might buy one anyway.

The Freebie 

Totally Free Tuesday

(On a Wednesday…oops.) 

When I got into my classroom, I was delighted to find that I have a sink at the back of the room. However, the paper towel dispenser has a not-so-kid-friendly poster about hand-washing on it that looks like it’s been water damaged from years of splashing.  I put together a differentiated poster packet for other teachers in the same boat. I plan on laminating the primary level poster from my packet and covering the old poster.

Click the picture below to grab your freebie today! There are options for primary classrooms (Pre-K–first) and older elementary (2-3)! Please remember to rate the product after downloading!

Posters Cover

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Totally Free Tuesday, Meet Makeover Madness

Totally Free Tuesday

Happy Tuesday! Totally Free Tuesday is colliding with Makeover Madness today to bring you a very special, limited-time only offer!

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I could have done this clip chart’s makeover and created a new freebie, but let’s be real here. There’s only three precious weeks left before school starts back up, and I’d like to maximize my pool time. This bundle includes:

  • Clip chart with seven sections
  • Weekly Behavior Log
  • Better Choice Form
  • Superstar Status Certificate

This bundle is typically priced at $3.00, but I’ll be giving it away TODAY ONLY for FREE! All I ask is that you please rate it so I can better my future products!

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Introducing: Totally Free Tuesday!

Hey there!

Totally Free Tuesday

This week, I’m starting a new series here at The Planning Fairy called Totally Free Tuesday. Every Tuesday, I’ll post a new freebie or make a paid product free for the duration of the day. Sound good?

For the inaugural Totally Free Tuesday, I’ve just uploaded a new freebie: Throw It Up, a classroom management system.


I use this in my own classroom because it dramatically reduces interruptions while the students are learning. Simply print on cardstock for durability, laminate, and display! I have mine hung in a vertical banner next to the rest of my behavior management visual aids.

To download, click the preview image above, or here.


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