Friday, February 28, 2014

March Currently - it's March already?

It's March 1st, which means it's time for the March Currently. Simply cannot believe that it's March. I'm not the only one, am I?

Linking with Farley to the monthly Currently. She got a brand new blog design which is super cute.

Let's get it started!


Listening: I had heard such wonderful comments on Facebook about The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon that I just had to download the first couple of episodes. I love Jimmy Fallon. Attractive AND a fabulous sense of humor? Oh yeah.

Loving: The strawberries right now in Korea are amazing. Simply amazing. They are THE best strawberries I've ever had. Even the ones with messed up parts taste great.

Thinking: I'm tired of winter. I'm tired of wearing my down coat. I'm ready for the spring weather to get here. There is supposed to be a beautiful cherry blossom festival here in Daejeon, and I can't wait to see it.

Wanting: I have seen Frozen twice, and I loved it. Absolutely loved it. Loved the music too. Yes, I want to build a snowman. And the song, "Let It Go"...wow. Love it. Koreans love the music too. I have heard "Let It Go" and "Do You Want To Build a Snowman" more than a couple of times around Daejeon. I even heard someone's ring tone today, and it was the snowman song. I just want to sing the songs. All the time.

Needing: I really need to edit my pictures from Japan, so I can upload them to my "other" blog. I didn't have my Mac for a week and lost time and then got behind everything.

??????: The answer is a man in a leather skirt and leather boots. What's the question? Comment below and see if you can figure it out!

Go on and link up with Farley!

Five for Friday - The Bachelor and a bowl of fat

It's Friday, so you know what that means! Five for Friday with Doodle Bugs!

Let's get it started in here! I apologize for not having many pictures for this week's linky party. Not much has gone this week at school since I was desk warming every single day.

 The winter weather in Daejeon is finally starting to go away! Yesterday, it was 46 degrees, which I like much better than 21 degrees. I didn't have to wear a scarf or gloves for the past couple of days. That makes me super happy! Being from Texas, I'm used to weather that goes from 32 degrees to 74 degrees in the span of 2 days...not weather that stays around 32 degrees.

 I have a confession. I watch The Bachelor. I know it's bad. I know the girls are often crazy. But I still watch it. I am all caught up on this season now, and I gotta say...I am just not a Juan Pablo fan. He's nice to look at, but I wonder if that's all there is. Am I the only one who thinks this?

And now for the question of the day....would you ever go on the The Bachelor or the The Bachelorette? Inquiring minds wanna know!

 Since I have been desk warming ALL week long, I have had plenty of time to work on my TPT stuff. Plenty of time. Like 8 hours a day, 5 days a week. I liked it. I really liked it. It was quiet. I could watch my Netflix in the background. I was pretty content. My only wish is that I wish I knew what I will be teaching next year, so I could get a jumpstart on it. Oh well.

Here is one of the ones I was working on...

We had a teachers dinner Thursday night to say goodbye to the teachers that are leaving our school. In Korea, you must change schools every 5 years. We had pork BBQ, basically large, thick slabs of bacon with 60% chewy fat. And Koreans eat it all, including the fat. I was the only weirdo at the table who was separating the meat from the fat with my chopsticks and spoon. I then put all the fat into a bowl and took a picture of my bowl of fat.

Did I make you hungry?

Yesterday was a rough day for me. Living in a foreign country can be hard sometimes. You are away from everything you know. Your friends, your family, your home, your pets, your comfort zone.

I cried twice. The first time was over something small. I must be emotional or something. The second time was because I needed to transfer some money from my Korean bank account to my American bank account. In Korea, you have to go to a big branch of your bank (mine is 45 minutes away) to set it up, and then (supposedly) you can go to your neighborhood branch every time after that. At least that's what I was told.

WRONG!

I got permission to leave school early (it's a big deal to leave school early...even during desk warming hours) to go to the bank. I walked to my neighborhood bank and took a number. I sat down and waited for them to call me. I had all the necessary paperwork and everything. The guy there asked why I was there, and I showed him my paperwork. He said, "No. We can't do that here." I couldn't explain myself very well because he didn't speak much English. Then he sent me away.

I was flabbergasted. Everyone told me that this would work. I walked outside, stood on the street corner, and started crying. I called my friend, Julie, who lives here, and she made me feel better. It's hard living in another country...a country where most people do not speak English...a country where things sometimes do NOT make any sense. It can be frustrating. And often times, it's not the BIG things that you get frustrated with...it's the little things.

This is all one big learning experience I know. I know that I will look back on these days and see how God used this to strengthen me and grow me. But growing pains hurt sometimes.

I know that once I move back to the states, I will appreciate more of the "little" things and be more grateful. I will definitely be grateful for the food. Did you see the fat? Oh, and on that night, I also ate something from the sea that tasted just like nail polish. Seriously.

Until we meet again....cheers!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

I've been nominated! TWICE!

I am SO honored. I have been nominated not once, but twice for the Liebster Blog Award. Woo-hoo! You have no idea how much it means to me to be have nominated.

Thank you so much Heather at The Land of I Can

and Miss B at Butterfly Teaching!

I appreciate it more than you know! You definitely gave me warm fuzzies by being nominated!

Liebster is a German word that means beloved, cute, lovely, dearest, and welcome. The Liebster Award is an award for new blogs, and I am so grateful that I got it! I am combining my questions from my two nominators into one BIG post.

Here are the rules:
1. Link back to the blog that nominated me
2. Nominate 5-11 blogs with fewer than 200 followers
3. Answer the questions posted for me by my nominator
4. Share 11 random facts about myself
5. Contact my nominees and let them know that I nominated them

Well, here we go! Here are my nominees:

Jo Anne, from Teaching in Cardigans  is a 5th grade teacher from California and is just getting started on this whole teaching journey. She is a big runner and reading her blog encourages me to keep going on my healthy journey.
Teaching in Cardigans



Amanda, from My Shoe String Life, is also a 5th grade teacher and has some good, practical ideas for the classroom. I really liked her activity with "3 new facts, 2 ah-ha's, and one big question". I have done something like that before with my students, but I really liked the "ah-ha" part.
My Shoe String Life



Mandy, from The 4th Grade Journey, is a 4th grade teacher from Florida. What makes her extra special special in my opinion is that she is an Army wife and mom, and her husband is deployed. God bless you and your family. I LOVE her idea of having folders where the students write what they have mastered and moved their papers to the "mastered" side of the folder. What a cute and clever way to reinforce that students are responsible for their own learning!

Princess, from Teaching, Love, Cupcakes, is from my favorite state of Texas! Whoop! She has just gotten into this big ole' world of blogging, and I am so glad! She includes a lot of great pictures from her classroom, which you know I love pictures. Check out her shout out box. Such a cute idea!

Kelli, from Tales of a Teacher, has the cutest blog. You just have to check out her Mastery Connect idea where the students have their own laminated bubble sheets and get instant feedback. I would have loved to have done something like this when I taught 5th grade math.
Tales of a Teacher


Laura, from Learning, Lessons, and Life, is a teacher from Georgia. I love how she shares ideas and products from other bloggers. She also shares many adventures from her life with 3 boys.


Heather, from Learning With Mrs. Langley, is a first grade teacher from Georgia. She shares great pictures and ideas from her different stations along with techie tips like Woobox, which I can't wait to check out.
Learning with Mrs. Langley


My last nominee is a big surprise. I had just found her blog the other day and thought it was super cute. And it was right after I had been nominated and posted about it...but I hadn't done the "homework" behind my own Liebster blog award list. She mentioned that getting this award was one of her goals in the bloggy world. Little did she know that I decided to give her the award as soon as I read her blog because it was that cute. I loved the title, the design, and her personality. So...without further adieu...

Emerald, from If You Mustache I Heart Teaching, is a 3rd and 4th grade math teacher, and I feel like I know her. Her blog is super cute, and she puts a lot of personality into her blog, which I love.
If You Mustache, I Heart Teaching

Ladies, I am new newest fan and follower, and I can't wait to get to know you more!

Here are the questions given to me by Heather at The Land of I Can:
1. What grade do you teach and why do you love it?
I currently teach E3 (3rd grade) through H1 (10th grade). I do enjoy the different grades and personalities. However, my favorite grades to teach are 4th, 5th, and 6th grades - they are at such an important age...figuring out the type of person they want to be. I also love having conversations with them and having fun with them. I can be a complete goof with my kids and I love doing it.

2. What is your favorite book to read to your students?
I love reading Earthquake Terror by Peg Kehret. It is such a great read aloud and keeps the kids on the edge of their seats, often begging me to keep reading past our dedicated time. I love it when a book does that!

3. Which do you love more: sticky notes, hole puncher, or dry erase markers?
It's a hard one between sticky notes and dry erase markers. However, I would have to go with dry erase markers because I can't imagine teaching without them.

4. What is your drink of choice to get your through the day?
It used to be Dr Pepper (before I moved to Korea and before I started taking Plexus and don't crave it anymore), but now it's water. I try to drink a lot of water...which means I have to visit the bathroom often.

5. Favorite school lunch that your cafeteria serves but you might not actually eat?
Haha. This is a good one. Anything with eyeballs or body parts floating around. I love to take pictures of them, but I do NOT like eating them.

6. How long have you been blogging?
I started blogging last spring but didn't get really into it until this past summer when I began the process to come teach in Korea. That was for my "other" blog. As for my teaching blog, I got really into it back in October.

7. What is your favorite TPT product?
My favorite product of my own would probably have to be my Math Stations. I LOVE teaching math and really enjoy creating activities for my kiddos to practice math.
My favorite product of someone else's is pretty much clip art by Krista Wallden of Creative Clips.

8. What holiday do you look forward to most during the school year?
I would have to say Christmas vacation. I love the music, the decorations, the cheesy ABC family Christmas movies, the time off...

9. What do you do with your summers? 
Travel, travel, travel...and I also like to chill with my dogs, read books, take naps, and volunteer at the dog shelter.

10. Do you pick out your school outfit the night before or the day of?
The day of...pretty much 95% of the time.

11. What do you wish all your students would know before coming to your class?
I REALLY wish they knew their multiplication facts (and addition facts and subtraction facts for that matter), especially when teaching the intermediate grades. I would also like them to know that I will love them and can't wait to get to know them.

Here are the questions given to me by by Miss B at Butterfly Teaching:
1. What are your top 3 favorite teaching blogs?
Oh' Boy Fourth Grade
Runde's Room
Step Into Second Grade

2. Do you have a TPT store?
I sure do! You can check it out HERE.

3. What is your favorite resource that you have ever made?
I love my Mix and Match Math Choice Boards. When I taught 5th grade math, I had so many low kiddos. I needed to work with them in small groups, so I had the rest of the class work on choice boards. It worked out perfectly, and I was able to really bring my low kiddos up.

4. What topic do you love to teach?
I love to teach anything in math. Seriously. I love the moment when they realize that they finally get it after struggling to understand it. I teach math in a fun, engaging way, and I love to hear my students tell me that they never liked math before my class. Warms my heart.

5. First ever linky party you joined in?
Doodle Bugs Teaching - Five for Friday. Love reading about everyone's week!

6. Who did your blog design?
Barb at Ruby Slippers Blog Design just redid my whole blog. In one word, she is awesome. I HIGHLY recommend her. She was so easy to work with and created my unique blog using the vision I had in mind. I couldn't be happier!

7. A funny comment you have had from a child?
Years ago...many years ago, when I taught 3rd grade, I got some great advice from Leo, one of my 3rd graders. We were eating lunch together in the classroom, and he told me that I needed a "Mr. H". I asked if he had any advice to give me. He put his fingers on his chin and thought pensively...
Then he said, "Well, you need to get interested in the things that he is interested in." I asked if he had any other advice. He thought pensively again and said, "Well, you could walk by him and do this..." - he stands up, walks by, sighs, and goes "hmm", and drops his napkin on the floor in front of me. Then he says, "You could get him that way. He picks up your napkin for you." I could NOT stop laughing. I guess I should have taken his advice because I am still single.

8. Helpful tip to a new blogger 
Put your personality in your blog. Don't be afraid to put in your sense of humor. That makes me want to read you more.

9. Favorite book to use in the classroom?
When I taught 6th grade World Cultures, we had to read this book called, Homeless Bird, by Gloria Whelan. It's about a 13-year-old girl in India who is forced to get married and endures many hardships. My students were fascinated by this book, and it really opened their eyes as to how other kids around the world have a different life from theirs. It provoked great dialogue and thinking.

10. Best ever teacher gift in the classroom?
I have gotten ratty stuffed animals, pictures, gift cards, etc, but my favorite gifts have been notes, emails, and letters from former students telling me what a difference I have made in my life. I still keep in contact with many of my former students, and their words mean more to me than anything. They always make me cry. This is why I still teach.

11. Memory from your first year of teaching?
My first year of teaching wasn't easy. In fact, it stunk. I could tell you many awful stories, but I will choose to tell you a funny one instead. I was hit on by two of my students' fathers. It was really weird.


And here are my 11 random facts about me...enjoy!
1. I worked at Chuck E Cheese in high school and did everything there except make the pizza. My least favorite job there was the merchandise counter...parents screaming at you that their kid was first. Um, there aren't any numbers there so how was I supposed to know?
2. I have an affinity for 3-legged dogs. I have had two of them. People tell me how lucky the dogs are, but it's actually the other way around. I'm the lucky one.
3. I went sky-diving in New Zealand. I LOVED it and can't wait to go again someday.
4. When I was 8 years old, my mom and I both broke our arms...same arm, same place, same night, same way. We were roller skating at our church gym.
5. I don't have any desire to go scuba diving. I LOVE adventure and trying new things, but for some reason, scuba diving creeps me out.
6. I know all the words to "Part of Your World" from The Little Mermaid. My voice sounds like Ariel's too. And she is my all-time favorite Disney princess.
7. I have never read To Kill a Mockingbird. It's on my list of books to read.
8. I love weird animal sci-fi movies like, Frankenfish, Ice Spiders, Lake Placid, Mega Piranha, and of course, Sharknado. I know. I'm weird.
9. I love to host parties and cook for people. It's a little hard to do that here in Korea. I miss my kitchen back home terribly. Have you seen the size of my kitchen in Korea? It's tiny. And...it's the biggest kitchen I have seen out of all the apartments I have been to. Some of my friends here in Korea have kitchens that are 1/4 the size of mine. I'll post a picture some day.
10. I have traveled to more than 40 countries and have wanted to teach overseas for over 12 years. And I'm finally doing it. It's an amazing feeling.
11. My favorite movie is Facing the Giants. It gets me every. single. time. Such an uplifting movie.

Here are the questions for my nominees:
1. What is one of your favorite teaching memories?
2. What is your favorite school lunch?
3. What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
4. What song gets you up and going and puts a smile on your face?
5. If you had to give any advice to a new teacher, what would you say?
6. What is a simple review activity that you do in your classroom?
7. What is the best teacher gift you have ever received?
8. What is one piece of advice you really wish you could give to parents?
9. What do you love about blogging?
10. How do bring laughter into the classroom?
11. What is your favorite book to read to your students?

OK guys! Head on over and check this blogs out!

To celebrate my two nominations, I'm joining in the huge TPT sale on the 27th and 28th. Can you believe that Teachers Pay Teachers is 3 million teachers strong? I am so excited to be a part of it!
Everything in my store is 20% off. Enter in the promo code, and you get even more off. Woo-hoo!

Monday, February 24, 2014

The joys of desk warming

My school has been "closed" for vacation last week and this week. But I have to go in.

So, basically I get paid for watching Bones all day on Netflix.

While I watch Bones, I create some goodies for my TPT store.

Is there something you really want to do for your classroom but just do not have the time?

I know what I would do at home if I were teaching back in Texas...making games, creating stations, organizing my room, etc.

If you had to desk warm at school for 8 hours a day for 2 weeks, what would YOU do?

Have any suggestions as to what I should do with all my desk warming time?

Oh, and I am jumping for joy! I have THREE people who have linked up to my linky party of "I am grateful for...". That makes me SO SO happy! You still have a couple of days to link up and join the party. Don't miss out!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Woo-hoo! Five for Friday

Woo-hoo!  It's the weekend, so you know what that means....it's time for Five for Friday with Doodle Bugs!


1. My school is closed this week and next.

However, I STILL have to go in because as the English teacher, it's in my contract.  Some of the teachers have come up and worked.  Why?  I have no idea.  It's like their summer break now since we are in between school years.

2. Since I have to be at school when it's closed, it's called desk warming.  Basically I get paid to sit at my desk and watch Netflix.  So I watch Netflix on my school desktop and work on my TPT stuff on my Mac.  It's a good set up.  I've been able to get all of my TPT products updated to reflect my new store name and blog.  That was a mighty task.

I have watching Bones on Netflix.  I love this show.  I have already seen all the episodes, and I have enjoyed rewatching them and seeing Bones and Booth's relationship from the very beginning.  I'm halfway through Season 6.  After finishing Bones, I'll be onto another series.  I've got several series on my watch list: Downtown Abbey, Orange is the New Black, Sherlock, Dexter, and several more.  Any that I just have to add to my list?

3. I had to clean out my kitchen sink drain the other day.  In Korea, there are no kitchen disposals, so all the food bits go into this here drain.  And it's disgusting.  Really disgusting.  You have to put a little bleach tab in there so it doesn't smell.  I didn't know this when I first moved to Korea, and boy, did it smell.  It's the little things I miss from home...

4. I had a MAJOR blonde moment this week.  Like MAJOR.  And I am actually going to tell you about it.

I have lived in my apartment for 6 months.  To leave my building, I have to press the "push" button below and then I push the front door open.

Tuesday morning, I headed downstairs to go to school.  I pressed the push button and then I pulled the front door.  Now, remember....you are supposed to push it open...not pull.

Of course, it didn't open.  I kept pressing the push button and pulling the front door.  Over and over.  

I couldn't figure out why it didn't open.  

So I texted my co-teacher and told her that I was stuck inside my building and couldn't get out. 

And then I stood there and waited because I didn't know what else to do.  

Finally someone from the outside came to the building to come inside and opened the door, and I was able to leave the building and walk to school.

The next morning, my brain was back to normal, and I pressed the push button and pulled the door.  It magically opened.

And it dawned on me....I had pulled the door the day before instead of pushing it.  Yes, I am blonde.

Shaking my head...

5. My friend and I went to Kingdom the other night...a local restaurant that serves pizza and fried chicken and is decorated with knights in shining armor.

We had tried to order a plain cheese pizza.  Not a potato pizza (it's not good....made with sweet potatoes), chicken pizza, or bulgogi (meat) pizza.  Just a plain cheese pizza (well with corn of course because all pizza in Korea has corn). The waiter said NO cheese pizza.  We said yes.  He said NO and entered text into his phone using Google translate to explain himself.

This is what his phone said.  Forgive the fuzzy picture...my friend and I could not stop laughing and therefore hold our phones still.

So there's my week! 

I also have some great news to share.  I was nominated for the Liebster Award!  I am working on a blog post to share all about that.  I feel SO honored!

Also, I am having a sale in my TPT store to celebrate my new blog, and I'm hosting my very first linky party.  I am working on having more gratitude in my life, so my first linky party is about being grateful.

Sadly, no one has participated in it yet.  Major sad face.  Please turn my sad face into a happy face and link up.  If it doesn't work, let me know.  I've never done it before, so I have no idea if I did it correctly.

Check it out in my previous blog post.  Thanks a bunch!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Celebration!

It's time to celebrate!

My new blog is up and running, and I finally got my Pinterest boards all set up.  Head on over and follow me!  It sure did take a while to transfer ALL my pins from my personal account to my Southern Fried Teachin account.  I had more than a couple of pins.

http://www.pinterest.com/southernteachin/

To celebrate, I am throwing a sale in my TPT store this weekend.  Yee haw!  I'm from Texas, so I just HAD to give a big ole "YEE HAW"!

I am also hosting my very first linky party.  Link up and join the party!

I have been really trying to have more gratitude in my life.  I have been trying to be grateful for the big things and the little things in my life.  

So I wanted my first Linky Party to be about gratitude.  Post what you are grateful for today (you can post as much or as little as you want).  Then come back and link your blog post up at the bottom. Grab the picture and link back to this post on your blog.  Can't wait to read what everyone is grateful for!



I am grateful for:
~ This amazing experience of living in Korea.  I have dreamed of doing this for over 10 years.  Sometimes I get teary eyed walking down the streets just realizing what an amazing opportunity this is.
~ My family and friends.  When you live halfway around the globe from your family and friends, a phone call or letter or package or email from from your loved ones back home means SO much.  It more than makes my day.
~ My faith.  Even though life has been a roller coaster sometimes (with a lot of dips), I have faith that God knows what he's doing and it's all a part of his plan.

Hope you're having a great week, and I would be grateful if you linked up below!




Sunday, February 16, 2014

Giveaway time!

I am participating in my very first giveaway!  Woo-hoo!



So exciting!  I'm on the 3-5 Giveaway, giving away my Fill-in-the-Blank Math Word Problems.

Be sure to head on over to Teach 2 Love to enter!


Saturday, February 15, 2014

Let It Go and a late Five for Friday

Oh. My. Goodness.  What a week.

I am linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching to tell you about my week.


Let's begin...

This week at school was a little different.  In Korea, the school year starts in March.  Our school year was coming to an end this week, which meant classes were cancelled a lot in order to practice for graduation.  I still had my classes with Mina and Seora - they are my favorite class and my favorite students.  They are always so happy to learn and sing and dance.  They can always make me smile.

We are using our ABC Rainbow mat and our magnetic letters.  They love to match up the magnetic letters to the letters on the mat.  We do all different activities to help them learn their letters, and the Rainbow mats have really helped.




I thought other teachers might like to use them as well, so I created one for TPT.  You can check it out HERE.



With my other classes, I am constantly trying to think of different activities to do where the students can practice their English.  My students have vastly different levels, and it can be difficult to think of activities that will work with different levels.  I had remembered doing an ABC List in my classroom back in Texas.  Have you ever heard of it?  I love using ABC Lists.  Basically, you take a piece of paper and write all the letters of the alphabet down the left side of the paper.  Then you write a word or phrase for each letter, depending on what you're learning.  It's a great way to review.

To make it more fun (especially for my students who are blind), I wrote each letter of the alphabet on a piece of styrofoam...yeah, my supplies are somewhat limited here in Korea.  I let the students choose a letter and then they say something that begins with that letter.



We have done: animals, food, words related to a story we just read, places, etc.  They really enjoy being able to choose the letter.

I finally saw Frozen on Monday.  I went with my coteacher, and I LOVED it.  Absolutely loved it.  I kept hearing about this awesome movie over and over on Facebook.  So I just had to see it.

I loved it so much that I went back yesterday (with my coteacher again) and saw it again.  Now I want the soundtrack because this song is playing in my head all the time.  Except I don't do it near the justice as Idina Menzel does.  I KNOW I'm not the ONLY one who loves this song.  Right?



Graduation was Friday.  The whole school goes to the ceremony.  It was all in Korean, so it was a little long for me.  However, a couple of the classes performed, including one of my classes.  They are moving up to high school next year.


 After graduation, the teachers headed up to the gym and played games.  They just love to do this at my school.  And since about 1/3 of the teachers are blind, we often have games where people have to wear black goggles to become "blind" as well.  They are actually a lot of fun.

I've got good news.  Actually great news....

I've got my Mac back!  Angela's got her Mac back!  Angela's got her Mac back!  Yes, that is great cause for a big ole happy dance!