Currently | January 2016


I am linking up with Farley again for this month’s Currently post! Happy New Year, friends!


listening // I love Kelly Clarkson and this is one my favourite songs of her Piece by Piece album.

loving // Lazy mornings. It’s nice to be able to lay around in bed, curled up with the puppy and not have to run out of bed at 6am like a crazy person.

thinking // There are things on my Summer break to-do list that need to be done before the new school year starts. I’m trying to spread them out though so it doesn’t feel like work.

wanting // I’ll struggle with being more active for the rest of my life. I don’t enjoy it and have to be in the right mood. I’ll keep working at it.

needing // I have 28 books sitting in two piles that I need to read. Plus the other books on my bookshelf that have also been added to the list. (Hey, I got through 5 books in two weeks in the first part of the holidays… I can make a dent in this new list, right?!)

one little word // This year, my word is courage. I’ve blogged a bit about it here if you’re curious about my reasons for the word. I’ve got a bit year up ahead, so I need to remember this one!

Swap, Share, Give Linky!



So, we’re back at it again, this time we’re celebrating the change in the seasons – in both hemispheres! Here in Australia the weather is starting to cool as we start our journey from Autumn to Winter, while I know many of my Northern Hemisphere friends are cheering the warmer weather in!

For those of you who’ve not experienced the Swap, Share, Give linky, a few of my good teacher friends from around Australia have gotten together to swap a product for review, provide YOU with a fun freebie and offer a piece of advice based on our teaching experiences.

So, without further ado, let’s get on with the show!


I was so lucky to have the opportunity to swap a product with the lovely Lauren, from Love, Laughter and Learning in Prep. If you haven’t been to her blog, stop what you’re doing and RUN over there, especially if you’re a Prep/Kinder teacher. She always has such fabulous ideas and I’m constantly stealing borrowing them!

Screen Shot 2015-04-24 at 7.51.33 pm


I was very fortunate enough to review her fun new pack that combines word work AND fine motor skills!

Now, Lauren has an amazing collection of Fine Motor activities in her store, and I’ve actually used some of them before, but this one looked amazing for my class at the start of this term, because I have some great little readers this year who are learning about word families at the moment.

We used this activity as a warm up for our reading, and students worked in pairs to complete the different word family groups.



This pack contains the four short ‘a’ word families -ag, -an, -ap and -at.



Each word family has a main card with four holes punched in it, plus 4 word cards belonging to that word family in one of three options – pictures (shown above), pictures and words, and just words, which is perfect for providing differentiation for your students!

Students find the cards that belong to the depicted word family and use ‘links’ (those ones that EVERYONE has stashed away in their classrooms!) to connect them together, utilising not only their word family knowledge, but also the ability to manipulate and connect small objects together.

My kiddos LOVED this activity and have asked to do it a few times since we last had a go. Next time we’ll be using the picture and word cards to extend students and get them focusing on what the words look like now that they’re starting to blend words!

Thanks so much to Lauren for swapping with me – click on any of the images below to check out her store! Also, don’t forget to stop by blog to check out her review of one of my products!





Celebrate the seasons with your class and create a fabulous seasonal bunting that showcases what students know about each season in this fun freebie for you! Simply click the image above to download, and don’t forget to drop me a comment with your thoughts!

This task works fabulous as an individual task, or buddy kids up to create a joint masterpiece that can be strung up in the classroom for an extra pop to your displays!

Note: There is an Autumn page and a Fall page, to cater for language difference! 🙂


Finally, the fun part! A giveaway from my friends and I to you! Simply fill in your details in the rafflecopter and you’re good to go!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

And don’t forget to stop by and visit all of my friends, see their fabulous swaps and collect all your freebie goodies by following the links below!

// Happy weekend, Sig_NewBlog2014//

GoNoodle Sanity Savers Linky

I’m linking up with Elizabeth from Kickin’ It In Kindergarten for her GoNoodle Sanity Savers linky!

You all know how much I love GoNoodle, right?!!


Fav GoNoodle Brain Break… is definitely I Like to Move It. Mostly because this was the dance that my class did to be involved in GoNoodle and Zumba Kids’ collaboration video last year and they were SOOOOO excited to see themselves dancing alongside many other schools in an online video.

My happy place… is anywhere where I can sit and read a book without interruption, or where I can sit and write. Both de-stress me pretty quick.

My guilty pleasure… is buying waaaay more craft supplies than I need. I like to bounce around different crafts so I’ve got bits and pieces everywhere. But just like I need time to read and write (see above), I also need time to craft!

Keep calm and… think happy thoughts. Being positive is key. (I’m trying to remember that!)

Don’t forget to head over and see all the other posts in the linky and join in, too!

Happy weekend!


January Pick 3 Pinterest Linky

Hello and Happy New Year!

It’s been a while since my last blog post, but I’ve been busy. Currently I’m a long, long way from my lovely home in Melbourne. In fact, I’m all the way across the world in Canada, staying with my best friend.

Can I just say, it’s much colder here than it would be at home!

I’ll try to upload some photos from my trip – not that there’s too many of them at the moment because mostly we’re chilling out and relaxing, which is awesome! – but until then, I thought I’d join in this fun linky that I’ve seen in my feedly list today.

It’s hosted by Inspired Owl’s Corner and PAWsitively Teaching, and I think it’s a lot of fun!

Pick 3 Graphics-January (2)

Now, I have to admit, I’m thinking ahead a bit to the 27th of January when I’ll be returning to work for the START of a brand new year, with a brand new class. For those who are new to my blog and unfamiliar with Australian school years, our school year runs from Jan/Feb – Dec (with our Summer break over Dec/Jan).

So, without further ado, here is my Top 3 Pinterest ideas I want to try out this month:

Slide1 (3)


Click the image for the Pinterest link (I did have trouble finding the original post for this though, so my apologies – let me know if you know where it belongs and I’ll update the links!). I think this would make an amazing display for the first few weeks of school as all students are settling in to their new classroom!

Slide2 (3)


More handprints! I think this would be a really nice way to ease separation anxiety – especially with parents. I’m teaching a straight Foundation (Kinder) class next year and I think it’s important to remind students AND parents that they’ll see each other again soon.

Slide3 (3)


This one I thought would be an amazing piece for portfolios. We put together a book of samples of student work throughout the year to give to students at the end of the year as a reminder of all the great work they’ve done. (And, especially in a world where people like to declutter, it gives parents an option to save ONE book with lots of work samples rather than having to keep EVERY book and piece of work.) How lovely would it be to have one of these at the START and END of year?

So those are some of my favourite Pinterest finds for this month. I’m sure there’ll be PLENTY more to come. If you don’t already follow me on Pinterest, do stop by! I have over 9000 pins (yes, my mind does boggle at that number!) and they’re predominantly teaching related.

Screen Shot 2015-01-05 at 10.41.41 pm

Don’t forget to join in the linky – just click the links at the start of this post to take you back to check out all the other amazing blog entries for even more inspiration.

Until next time, have a lovely week! ❤


Swap, Share, Give Linky!


Hey everyone!

My lovely, fellow-Australian teacher friends and I have joined forces again for another Swap, Share, Give blog linky this weekend! We had so much fun the last time around we’re back at it, sharing some of the fantastic resources you might have missed!


I was paired with the very lovely Jemima from Luck’s Little Learners. Jemima is a fellow Victorian teacher (woohoo!) and if you’re not following her already, you definitely need to stop by and visit her blog, check out her Facebook page, or visit her on Instagram.

*~ SWAP ~*

Screen Shot 2014-08-09 at 4.28.54 pm

I was super fortunate enough to be able to review Jemima’s 100th Day of School Party Pack! Here in Australia we’ve hit the middle of our school year and 2 weeks ago (July 31st), my class celebrated their 100th Day of School! (Strange, I know, for my northern hemisphere friends who are only starting to head back to school now!)

First up, let me tell you: this pack is designed for the busy teacher. If you (like me) find yourself coming up on 100 days a little time poor, these activities are all PRINT AND GO and are so easy and fun to implement.

A peek at some of the things included in Jemima’s pack:

SSG2014_1Great, detail activity ideas and instructions!

SSG2014_2100s charts – a whole variety so that you can differentiate for your kids (or skills) as required. Also included (but not in the photo) is a hundreds chart with random numbers missing.

I used these as early finishers tasks on the day and they worked a treat!


Ways of Making 10 pages.


Tracing/writing 100 letters.

This was another early finisher’s task that I had for the kiddos – and can I just say, they were SO amazed that they could write ‘100 letters’ (Preps AND Grade 1s!). It was really adorable and they really, really loved this task.


100th Day Writing prompts!

We ended up using the 4 prompt option in the centre and I’ve got a couple of photos of my kiddos work to show you:


This was some writing by two of my Grade 1 students – I was just blown away by one of my boys who declared (very proudly) that if he had $100 he would give it to a charity. *heart-warming moment*


And some from my Preps!

(No matter how many times I tell them ‘Don’t colour over your writing…’ <- I sound like a broken record!)


Some great ‘100’ visualising mats and a 100 Days of school poem! My preps used the blank mat to stick down 10 groups of 10 objects that they all bought from home. We all read the 100 days of school poem and it was decorated and pasted into the back of their Literacy journals with the other poems we’ve read this year!


Some of our groups of 100!


Crowns and placemats and a fantastic colouring page!


One of my kiddos modelling her 100 Days of School crown!

All-in-all, I was blown away by Jemima’s pack – it was fun, easy to print and implement and provided a lot of options, which (for someone teaching a composite class) is just awesome!

I know for a lot of your 100 Days of School is still a long way off, but I would seriously urge you to add Jemima’s 100 Days of School Party Pack to your carts right now to have it ready for your 100 days of school!

*~ SHARE ~*

As part of our linky I’m going to share TWO freebies with you – one of mine, and one from Jemima!

First up, in keeping with our 100 Days of School theme, I’m sharing with you the photo sign I used for the day (modified slightly – mine had the name of the school and the specific date for our 100 days of school):

Screen Shot 2014-08-09 at 5.30.39 pm

Click the image above (or here) to download this freebie! If you’re looking for my other freebies, simply click here.

If you’re looking for a great freebie from Jemima, look no further than her Digraph ‘ng’ as ‘ing’ pack! (Or check out all her freebies here!)

Screen Shot 2014-08-09 at 5.38.05 pm

*~ GIVE ~*

The last component of our linky is probably my favourite: the giving part.

If you head over to Bec’s blog (Books, Bugs and Boxes) you have the opportunity to enter a giveaway to win ALL of the packs that were reviewed as part of the linky party.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

However, if you want an extra chance (or two) to win a copy of Jemima’s 100 Days of School Party Pack and my Hens Love Tens activity, just enter the Rafflecopter below:


a Rafflecopter giveaway//

And don’t forget to head on over to Luck’s Little Learners to see Jemima’s review of my activity Hens Love Tens: A Skip-Counting Game.



Free Font Friday (Flying Free)

TTT Summer Bloggin-76

How sad! It is the last Free Font Friday from the Summer blogging series with The Teaching Tribune! 😦

So here is one more font for you today!


Simply click the image above to download from TeachersPayTeachers.

There should also be an update to my Exclusive Font Pack before the end of the weekend, too, so keep an eye out for that! (If you’ve purchased it, it now also includes ALL my free fonts, too, so there’s no need to download them all!)


Storybook Sunday: Dear Greenpeace


I’ve been teaching letter writing to my Grade 1 students over the last few weeks and we had a bit of fun with a great story called Dear Greenpeace by Simon James.

Dear Greenpeace(Purchase on Amazon or Fishpond)

For those of you who have never read the story, it’s told through a series of letters between a little girl named Emily and Greenpeace. Emily discovers a whale living in her pond and writes to Greenpeace to learn about (and how to look after) her whale.

It’s a very sweet, very endearing story, with a great environmental message, too.

My kiddos just adored it.

We used it as a springboard for writing imaginative letters to each other about wild animals living in strange places (e.g.: polar bears in freezers, dogs shaving on toilets, snakes in pipes, monkeys under beds, etc).

They had SO MUCH FUN brainstorming their ideas and their letters turned out great, too.

(For the beginning of the year, my expectations included an opening statement sentence, a sentence explaining how they knew what their animal was, and something that their animal was doing in its’ strange location.)

I’ve made up a couple of template pages for you to use if you’d like. Click on the sample letter below to download the letter and two template pages!



Monday Made It



It’s been absolutely ages since I’ve linked up with Tara for Monday Made It, but I’ve actually made something! (Shock! Horror!)

I’ve been making some Back to School gifts for some of my besties at work/etc.

This year I’ve made them all some personalised merit stickers to hand out to their kids.


Every teacher is getting six copies of the 4 designs above:

– [teacher] thinks my work is spectacular!

– [teacher] thinks my work is un-BEE-lievable!

– [teacher] thinks my work is out of this world!

– [teacher] thinks my work is awesome!

I just printed them on some A4 size sticker labels that I picked up at Officeworks and used my 1 inch paper punch to cut them out. They’re pretty easy to peel back to give to students (or better yet, hand them out to the kiddos and get them to peel it back – fine motor opportunity!).


This is how they’ve been packaged for everyone!


I love me some washi tape. (No, seriously – I have a MASSIVE washi-tape addition and …. well, probably 40+ different tapes to pick from!)

I just picked some stylish black patterned tape and used my ink stamps to personalise each little baggy.

I think they turned out rather cute!

What have you been making lately?


Hall Pass and Five for Friday

It’s been one of those weeks, so I’m going to link up with two linkys today. I hope you’ll forgive me!

We don’t have Hall Passes at my school, but it seems like a pretty good idea for a linky, regardless. Thus, I’m linking up with Reagan, from Tunstall’s Teaching Tidbits. On with the show…

P is for Product (My Favourite Product)

I love my Silly Sentence Sorts, and I use them all the time. They’re a simple, easy to use Literacy activity that reinforce reading and writing skills. This was one of my very first products and remains my fav!

A is for Area 

My favourite area is my classroom. I can’t really narrow it down too much (because honestly there’s not much area to narrow it down to!), but I have a soft spot for my rainbow wall. It just brightens the room and looks great with work covering it. (Need to update my photos now that the kids have moved in to the classroom!)

S is for Signal

I use the Whole Brain Teaching’s “Class Class” signal. However I say ‘class’ my students respond with an identical ‘yes’.  I love that I can play around with how I say ‘class’ and make it loud, soft, fast, slow – the kids love it!

S is for Sanity

My sanity is saved daily by my co-workers. I’m very fortunate to work in a school with a fantastic staff who all get along, and I have a great team leader who’s very supportive and a fantastic integration aide who’s been an absolute life-saver since the start of the year. At the end of the day I just love the opportunity to unwind and discuss the day, get things off my chest with my like-minded colleagues, and leave the school feeling at ease!



Last week, Brooke from Teachable Moments, highlighted a great product for cleaning whiteboards and laminated paper. I went out and bought some (on sale!) and cut them up for my classroom. So excited to have a class set of whiteboard marker erasers that will actually clean!


We’ve had some ridiculously hot weather here in Melbourne (uncomfortable and annoying hot!). On Monday night I was with my parents and my Dad, bless him, made us banana splits! Now, I’m not a big ice-cream eater, but it was simple and delicious!


Speaking of my parents, my Mum likes to buy things for my classroom when she spots things that the kids would like, including this fake-grass covered bunny (that’s available due to Easter… which is so far away still!). But I love it – it’s so tactile and I have a lot of kids who love sensory activities. He’ll go into the classroom soon and join my fake tree and assorted classroom decorations.


Speaking of classroom things, meet Wally. Wally is my 2013 classroom take-home mascot. He’s actually the wombat from Wombat Stew and was named by not-so-diplomatic vote (not-so because my Preppies, with only 10 days of school under their belt, voted for EVERY name on the board!). He’s cute and tiny and the kids of are super-excited to take him home. I’ll share more pictures of him at a later date!


Who stole the apples from the apple tree? This week our letter/sound focus has been ‘a’. While the Preps made Anzac Biscuits in Investigations, the Grade 1s and I explored apples. We peeled and spiral-sliced apples using an apple peeler/corer (my kids LOVED this – springy apples and long, thin, curly apple skins!), made apple glyphs and made a class book adapted from Deanna Jump’s Apples Math and Literacy Activities.

What’s ahead for you this weekend?