Merry Halloween

Happy post Halloween week friends. I know Halloween and teaching don’t always go hand in hand but I’ve learned that if you embrace the day for what it is, you can still have a successful day of school. I knew what standards/lessons I had to teach the day of Halloween so I did some major planning on how to make it valuable but fun. (We also had some fun activities mixed in that was just for the excitement of the day!)

Kiddos entered the room and had 2 different Halloween morning work sheets ready for them to work on. I got these 2 free morning work sheets on TPT. One sheet was a Halloween word search from Melissa Fjal – Tales of Teaching‘s store. There are a ton of free word searches to download but I thought this was the perfect one for the age of my kids. I also had a Halloween secret message sheet for them to fill out that I got from D Conway‘s store. They were both huge hits and kept my kids silent for the first 10 minutes of the day (which they’re supposed to do every other day with their morning work but it’s NEVER silent.)



We then had our daily morning meeting. We talked about the day and then went around to share what they were going to be for Halloween. I always start the day with a game so they asked if I had a Halloween game for them after they shared their costumes. I had 24 different Halloween charade cards that they got to pick from. We then played rounds of Halloween charades throughout the day. They LOVED this and it was super easy for me to set up.

Reading this week was all about finding the author’s purpose of stories and texts while also talking about similes and metaphors. We read one of my FAVORITE Halloween books, Creepy Carrots by Aaron Reynolds and Peter Brown and found the author’s purpose of the story (which wasn’t too difficult for them but it was fun!)


After the story we went around the room and completed some Halloween simile and metaphor task cards (that I got for FREE on Teaching with a Mountain View‘s shop ). They thought had so much fun reading all of the different themed cards and totally grasped the different between similes and metaphors.



Math this week was all about prime numbers and multiplicative comparison stories. I searched the glorious TPT and found a FREE resource that fit BOTH of what we have been working on from I HEART 4th Grade‘s store. It was perfect.

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I am currently teaching grammar to 3 different 4th grade classes and wanted to spice up our lesson on sentence fragments. This was the 3rd time I taught this lesson and wanted to do something similar that I did with my first 2 classes. The first 2 classes did some sentence fragment task cards so I found Halloween sentence fragment task cards for $3.00 on Purple Palmetto‘s store for this group. Once they were done they did a Halloween themed mad lib to practice nouns, verbs, and adjectives.

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Finally, the day ended with the Charlie Brown classic, The Great Pumpkin. I LOVE that movie and show it every year, not just for them, but for me too!



I also got the pleasure of giving them their second sponsored Scholastic book that came in the mail. They were so excited and grateful for the free gift. Like I said last month, the dollar monthly Scholastic Book Club books are amazing and a blessing. My kids get a free book every month while learning about who their sponsor is and how they are related to me. It was so sweet to see their happy faces. It was the perfect ending to the day.



I jokingly told them if they brought me candy (specifically Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups) I would give them extra credit. Then this happened today….


I love my job!

Don’t get me wrong after yesterday I was EXHAUSTED and am so happy it’s the weekend, but I had a blast with the day. I love my class. They make everything much more enjoyable and less stressful. With the end of Halloween means the beginning of my favorite 2 months of the year!! The next couple of months will be filled with so many fun activities and lessons that I can not wait to do and share! To get you all in the mood for the most wonderful time of the year, I’d like to share my wonderful tree that, yes, I put up last night because I love Christmas so much! Happy weekend!


For more day to day activities and lessons, go follow my class instagram account @lifeoftherookieteacher. You won’t regret it!


Book Clubs, Tug-a-War, and M&M’s

I went into this week thinking it’d be a normal week, but I forgot, normal weeks don’t exist as a teacher. We did some fun activities that I thought would be fun to share!

Tuesday our first Scholastic book orders came in the mail. I’m trying something new this year. The Scholastic Book Club has a book a month for specific grade levels that are only $1.00. Last year, a bunch of teachers in my area were asking for donations from friends and family on Facebook to sponsor a child in their class. They were asking for individuals to donate $9.00 so they could buy a student in their class 1 $1.00 book a month for the whole year. I was apprehensive because I HATE asking anyone for money so I didn’t participate. I saw how much of a success it was for the classes that participated last year and thought I would give it a try this year to see what would happen. My friends and family were AMAZING. I got a full class worth of donations within a day.

This past Tuesday our first $1.00 book set came in. Each student got the book Frindle by Andrew Clements with a note inside saying who their sponsor is for the year and how they are connected to me. It was so adorable to see how grateful they were when they found out a stranger donated enough money for them to each receive a free book every month. It was also super cute to hear, “My sponsor is Miss Nygaard’s mom!” or “My sponsor is Miss Nygaard’s favorite cousin!” It made my day! My friends and family LOVED to see this picture and LOVED to hear how excited they were!

Just look at how cute they are!

Last week we had our annual grade level race (that is usually a Homecoming Friday activity but was postponed due to poor weather.) The sad part was that by the time we ran (on the makeup day), it was cold and raining so we had to cut the afternoon fun short. What we usually do as a grade level after the race is have a grade level class tug-a-war tournament. Each class plays tug-a-war against every other class in their grade. Last year, when I taught 3rd grade, my class literally lost EVERY round but one, (and they only won that round because the PE teachers joined their team) it was tragic. This year, my class DOMINATED! We won every round except for 1. We only lost to the class that got 1st place who won every round. I went from having a class that was dead last, to a class that ended up being the runners up! It was awesome! They were so into it and I LOVED it! It was just as much fun for me as it was for them!


Today I wanted to end the week with something fun. It’s Friday, who doesn’t want to do something fun? For math, we had to end our first unit reviewing bar graphs. They’ve been working with bar graphs since kindergarten so I wanted to make it fun for them. I pulled an activity I did with my 3rd graders last year (when I also taught bar graphs) that was all about graphing M&M colors. They were so excited when they found out we were working with M&M’s. You’ve probably either heard of this activity, or have done this activity before but it’s fun nonetheless. Some even said they have done this activity before with M&M’s or Skittles but they were hyped to do it again!

I found this awesome (free) TPT worksheet from Thomas Teachable Moments‘ shop that guides them through everything! Once they finished the activity, they made their own bar graphs (as their assignment.)

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Yesterday we talked about frequency tables. Students went around and found data on a question of their choosing to create their own frequency table. Today, they took that data to make their own bar graph. They thought it was awesome. It was a little chaotic but my kiddos are resilient and did a phenomenal job. Seriously, these kids are awesome.

It was a fun week but I’m exhausted. To make it even more exhausting, it’s been raining and cloudy the past few days and then today, we saw our first snow flakes of the season. I’m now sitting on my couch (drinking some wine) with candles lit and the snow falling. It feels like it’s the middle of the winter but it’s only October….only in Minnesota.


For more day to day action and live videos (which got featured in the #teacherlife’s story on Instagram today) go follow my teacher Instagram page @lifeoftherookieteacher! Today I posted on my story an ADORABLE writing response one of my kiddos wrote about when the prompt was “What do you want to be when you grow up?” and he wrote he wanted to be a teacher. His response will make you smile! Go check it out!!

Hello Fresh

Happy almost July 4th! Over here in the great bold north we’re already starting our second month of summer (which is insane!) I’ll be honest and say that I’m kind of bored….I know, I know “it’s summer this is what we look forward to all year as teachers.” I’m not saying it isn’t great but I feel like I have nothing to do. It’s fine to have nothing to do a few days in a row, but all summer…..I’m going crazy.

I’ve been thinking about what to post since I have no school stories or activities going on so I thought I would share with you something that I love! I know the whole meal delivery service is becoming a huge hit but I’ll be the first one to say that I love it and it is something to look into! I HATE cooking. I’m bad at it and I don’t have the patience for it so needless to say, I eat out a lot. That all changed when I discovered my favorite kit/program, Hello Fresh.

I promise this is not an endorsement deal in any way (I’m not even close to qualified for something like that) I just truly love this. Like I said, I hate cooking. Growing up, my mom wasn’t the best cook in the world and all my dad knew was how to grill meat and fish (and he usually cooked them so much they dried out) so I was never around someone who really knew what they were doing. I moved out last year and I have wasted too much money on eating out and groceries from Target that end up in the trash because I don’t know what to do with them. One day I was on Facebook and an ad for Hello Fresh came up offering a discount on your first set of meals ordered. I was intrigued.

I looked at the site and thought, “hey why not?” The week I looked at it they were offering a discount on meals (which I found out they offer all the time) and found that I could order 3 meals (2 servings each) for only $40. Now for those of you who don’t live alone, 3 meals actually covers 6 meals since I’m eating alone. I usually spend much more than that anyways each week eating out and buying groceries so I figured the price was worth it.

I LOVED IT! When the kit arrives the meals are split into paper bags labeled with each meal, meat insulated with non-toxic dried ice, and cards that give the recipe for each meal. Before the Friday of the next week, you select the meals you want ordered off of the weekly menu the site offers. The kit arrives on Wednesdays with your meals. Usually the meals are pretty easy to make. Seriously, if I can do it anyone can! The best part is it’s all natural ingredients. I’m not a huge person on “eating organic” but I do love when I know exactly what something is made out of, and it usually tastes better!


This week I ordered a pasta meal, a fish meal, and taco meal. Today I made my new taco meal! The official name of the meal is Pork Carnitas Tacos and it is amazing!

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I’m a huge taco/burrito person so this was right up my alley! This was also a super easy meal! The longest part for me, was slicing up the onions, peppers, and tomatoes needed. I honestly just love how they provide you with EVERYTHING you need and the recipes are super easy to follow. Unlike most “word filled” recipes, these recipes have written directions along with picture directions, which when you are as incompetent in cooking as I am, it’s the perfect thing!


Now I know that my picture does not look even close to the same as the website’s picture (when does it ever) but it tasted even better than I expected! I seriously recommend this meal delivery service. It has made me an even better cook (to a point) and has gotten me to eat much healthier than I ever have before!

If you are interested in giving this service a try, I can help you do that for free! (Remember, this is not an endorsement in any way!) As a member I can send out free week invites to interested individuals AND extra discounts to friends. Currently, I still have a free week of meals that I can give out. I also have a $40 off coupon for anyone who also may be interested. If you have always wanted to try a meal delivery service, this is your chance to do it for free. If this interests you, leave a comment saying you are interested! I can have the first person who offers try the service for free and the second person who is interested get the $40 off coupon.


I promise this is an amazing service and definitely worth the try!