Cape Town’s Small Pleasures

Now there are tons of major sights and experiences I could go on and on about from my trip to Cape Town. There’s the V&A Waterfront, a visit to Robben Island, and of course taking the funicular up Table Mountain. At some point I will blog about all of those things, but today I wanted to share some of the little moments that really stuck with me. The views! Everywhere we turned there were mountains in the distance. Sunrise, sunset or smack dab in the middle of the day, the mountains that surrounded us were impressive. In the city, countryside, […]

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Winter Safari in South Africa 

We skipped the long trek to get to Kruger National Park for our safari. I know, I know, it is suppose to be the best place for safari; a huge area to self drive, breathtaking views and one of the most famous places in South Africa to see the big five, but it just wasn’t in the plans with the time we had. Having said that, we couldn’t have picked a better game reserve than Amakhala in the Eastern Cape just outside of Port Elizabeth. A chat with my aunt pointed me in their direction and I can’t thank her […]

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Take Off to South Africa 

I can’t believe it’s finally here! Time to get out of dodge and hit the open road. I have been patiently (or not so patiently) waiting for this trip to South Africa for almost a year, but now that it’s finally here I can’t believe it!  Not only am I beyond thrilled to be spending two full weeks in South Africa, but my friend, Christine and I even snagged some bonus time in Germany. I mean, when you’re looking for the cheapest flights possible, sometimes you have to do an eleven hour layover. No complaints here, since it will give […]

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Summer Travel, Countdown to South Africa 

Happy Summer! The whole summer is stretched before me and there is so much to look forward to, but by far the biggest adventure of the summer will be traveling to South Africa with friends. In fact we leave in just a few short weeks and I have to admit I am so not ready! Besides packing which I usually like to do embarrassingly early, that I haven’t done, I feel like I have so much reading to do before leaving. While all the flights are booked and places to stay are set, I feel very behind the eightball on […]

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Teach Like Finland: My Summer Pick for PD Reading 

Summer is right around the corner. Exactly one week from today in fact, summer will officially start for me. And while it will be hard to pry myself from my classroom and promise not to return until at least the end of July, I am looking forward to several big events and lots of recharging for another year. One thing summer means to me is more time for reading. I have a stack of fun read books along with several “teacher” books I am looking to tackle. All I need now is the time to actually read them. Top on […]

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Celebrating Global Learning: Continents Fair

Last Friday was quite the day. Besides breaking out the lawn games again for math, which students love, second grade also had their big continents fair. It was the culmination of a month long research project students worked on both at school and at home. After in depth study of the seven continents, students picked a country of interest, and identifying what continent it is located on. Then, with graphic organizer in hand, students got busy researching specific information. The second grade teachers collaborated with our librarian and technology teacher to complete the research. Between books and websites, students were […]

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Yard Games or Math Practice?

Last Friday was definitely a FriYAY type of day! It all started the weekend prior when after a moment of weakness when I went to Target. I just can’t resist the dollar section! Besides picking up blow up yard dice I’d seen on several Instagram posts, I also found the most amazing wooden yard dominoes. It was just the thing I needed to create a global math game lesson. I already own Molkky (a yard game from Finland), but I bought another copy of the game from Amazon. This proved much easier than finding space in a suitcase and lugging it across the […]

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STEM Challenge: Landmarks From Around the World

It was another busy week as we wind down to the end of the school year. One of my favorite activities this week was a global STEM Challenge. I mean come on, what’s not to love combining travel with STEM? I found a couple great resources to do this activity. First I bought STEM building cards on TpT from one of my favorite sellers, Brooke Brown of Teach Outside the Box. It was a bundle set, so we will have other STEM goodies to use, but for Friday’s lesson the landmarks were our focus. After looking around on TpT more […]

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Build a Joey Kangaroo a Home

Students had a blast last week in the STEM lab. I connected our social studies curriculum to STEM through a lesson where students made their own kangaroo pouches for a “lost” kangaroo joey. We started by reading about Australia in a small book I created to give students some background knowledge. You can pick up your own copy in my Teachers Pay Teachers Store. One of the chapters covered animals found in Australia, in particular marsupials that carry their young in a pouch. After reading, we watching a few YouTube videos of kangaroos hopping about, with baby joeys going in and out […]

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Classroom Virtual Travels to Australia

Last week we wrapped up our in depth travels around the world with Australia as our last stop. While I have not been to Africa or Antarctica, which were the two previous continents, I have been to Australia and could share my experience with students. To kick off the week we started by locating Australia on a map and read a general facts page. This lead to questions and discussion, and comparing Australia to other continents we have studied.   In addition to this we watched two videos by Travel Kids about New Zealand. I liked that the videos cover […]

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