Tag: You Oughta Know Blog Hop

You Ought to Know About This Eagle Cam

Today I am linking up with Jasmine at 
Buzzing with Mrs. McClain for her 
You Oughta Know Blog Hop

Have you heard? Have you seen? 
The eagle cam at Berry College is all the rage amongst students near and far. 

Yes, indeed…there is a mama eagle and a daddy eagle that apparently will remain “an item” a couple for years and years. 

We tuned in last year for the first time and we were blown away by the live streaming of this eagle family.  

We were “up close and personal” as we observed the lifecycle of eagles. 
We might as well have been IN the nest as the parent eagles took turns sitting on the eggs, keeping the newborn eaglets warm and protected, and feeding them freshly caught fish and other small animals.

Here is the link if you would like to tune in as well. 

The Eagle Cam at Berry College

The eaglets are 7 weeks old now and they have changed so much since their initial debut when they were just tiny little balls of light gray fuzz.

Some of my favorite pics:

Eaglet “hug” at 4 weeks old
Beautiful! Their feet!!! 3 1/2 weeks old

There are lots of photos and information on the site as well. 

My kids have loved the eagles for 2 years. 

Therefore, I wanted my students to write about the eagles, but I couldn’t find a resource that fit what I had in mind. So, I made a booklet for the students to record their observations as well as the information that they had gathered. 

The Eagle Cam:

Keeping an Eagle Eye on the Eagle Nest

{A Writing Activity}
This is a fun way to research and to write about the lifecycle of an eagle. The students record observations and illustrations in these little booklets. 
What student does not like to write in booklets?

Look at the students’ booklets! They were super proud!

Below is a preview of the eagle booklet resource. 
If you would like to check this out on TPT, then please click {HERE}.
To read more about it, see {THIS POST} and {THIS POST}.
If you are a PebbleGo fan, then you may like this organizer to help with your research. 
You can get a free copy {HERE}. I have also included an organizer with no lines if that is what you need instead. 

Thanks for stopping by!

You Oughta Know About using a Desk Calendar on the Wall

Today I am linking up with Jasmine at Buzzing with Mrs. McClain for her 
You Oughta Know Blog Hop

The tip that I would like to share with you is using a desk calendar on the classroom wall as a teaching tool. 

Yes, indeed. Using a desk calendar on the wall at our calendar area has been handy dandy for me. The last two years I got one during the Back-to-School “season” at Target.

It all started as, “Oooh, I like that calendar! 

It would look great in my classroom, so I got some strong magnetic hooks. 

Voila! I had a handy, large-sized calendar that could substitute my oldie-but-goodie calendar from days of old. From then on I was hooked!

3 Things that I like about it:


I don’t have to change the title of the month and all 30 … or 31 … or 28 cards at the end of each month. 


The students can see how to use a real calendar like we have used on the walls in our homes and offices for decades. These days, I try to use my phone calendar for most personal things, but somehow seeing things written out on a paper calendar helps me keep the big picture in mind. 


I can add the students’ birthdays, events at school and upcoming breaks from school. Not that we teachers are super excited about breaks or anything. (We do need a mental and emotional break from the daily thoughts and concerns that we have for our students and their well-being.)

As a matter of fact, last Spring, I also added the countdown or “count up” to the Berry College eaglet leaving the nest. Approximately. 

We were there. Front and center. Via webcam. 

Well, it FELT like we were there! We were able to watch the excitement of the eaglet’s growth during its first 12 weeks. It was very cool! Since we could watch the eagle family on the smart board, many times we left it on as we worked during the day. The kids LOVED it! 

Ok. I didn’t mean to blog about all of that, but the memories came flooding back and I had to tell you about it. If you want to read more about that experience please click here. (There is also an Eagle research organizer freebie if you need something like that.) 

If you would like to see the booklet that we used to record our observations, then please click here to check it out in my store. 

Make sure to visit the other bloggers during Buzzing with Mrs. McClain’s 

Have a great weekend!

You Oughta Know About This Masking Tape Trick

Today I am linking up with Jasmine at Buzzing with Mrs. McClain for her You Oughta Know Blog Hop. 

Masking tape is a hot commodity. 

The good kind. 

“Good” to me is the kind that will stick on the painted cinder block walls in my classroom and in the hallway. All year…for the most part. 

And…it won’t take off the wall paint when I take a project off of the wall. 

Our local office supply store started carrying only Painters Tape that LOOKS like regular masking tape. Why in the world?

Maybe people want that these days. 
Not us teachers. No way! 

That type of tape could send us through the roof… 

  • if we have to retape or restick the hallway items every morning when we walk into the school. 
  • or if our number line has sections of ten that fall off regularly. (Especially if it has rained and the humidity is on the high side INSIDE the school.)

Yes, I could use my hot glue gun, but sometimes it is more convenient to get out that tape and just start sticking. 

So, I have a purchasing tip and a sticking tip for you. 

I recommend the Scotch brand tape with the yellow label inside the roll that is labeled, “For Home and Office.”

My sticking tip is one that I got from another teacher whom I happened to be walking by as she was applying tape to her projects to display. Unroll about a foot (or less) of masking tape and stick the long edge to the item to be taped. Then roll the tape long ways like a hotdog and stick the other long edge under to complete the roll. This type of tape roll holds beautifully (with the right tape).

Note: Do not be fooled. Below is a photo of a “good” roll of tape. Just because it was squashed and was the very last roll on the shelf at the second Target that I visited during the Back to School Frenzy, doesn’t mean that I didn’t snatch it right up and claim a victory. Never mind that the price is a bit steep. However, you get what you pay for sometimes. 

Let me know if you give it a try. We could start a movement around the world in an effort to help things stick to walls better. It couldn’t hurt. 

Also, let me know if you have known this trick forever because some brilliant soul thought to tell you while you were getting your education degree.  Talk about paying it forward…

Here are a couple of my free and paid items that I like to stick to the wall.

For more tips and tricks, hop over to the other bloggers who have linked up to share their wisdom with the world. (Is that too dramatic?)

Now that you have read my blog post, hop over to any one of these other great bloggers!

    Have a fabulous day!

    You Oughta Know About These Fabulous Folders

    Well, well…it’s back to school time again?!

    It reminds me of the Dunkin Donuts commercial where the baker mutters each morning, “Time to make the donuts. ” The camera shows him going to work and coming from work each day and he eventually passes himself in the night. Don’t we feel like that as teachers sometimes? As a result, we are continually searching for better and more efficient ways of doing _________. (Fill in the blank.)

    Today I am linking up with Jasmine McClain from Buzzing with Mrs. McClain. She is hosting a Blog Hop called You Oughta Know. Follow the link at the bottom of this post so that you can add some new ideas to your repertoire.

    This link up is perfect timing for me because I have been assigned as a mentor to the new teacher on our team. I have tips on my mind that she would be so happy to know about.

    The first tip is about these fabulous folders. I discovered these  folders by Nicky’s Folders a few years ago. Many teachers in my school use them for sending home papers and notes.

    They come in lots of colors. The metallics are beautiful!!

    There is a clear sleeve on the front so that you can customize the folder.


    There is a clear sleeve on the back as well so that you can add a homework helper page or a weekly spelling list.

    And…they are supposed to last for a YEAR! That is a proven fact in my classroom.

    There are also handy dandy CLEAR pockets inside the folder, which are perfect for small notes that might need to be delivered.

    As a matter of fact, I have a set of small notes that are ready to go. Click here to check them out in my store.


    I usually copy several sheets of each page on different colors of paper, so that I have some ready at a moment’s notice. I keep them in a drawer of a smaller plastic organizer.

    This next set is a FREEBIE that includes a set of small notes that are actual rewards for the students. Nothing fancy…just Simple Rewards. The students love them! Check them out here.

    So that is my tip for the day! Hop on over to the Blog Hop to find some great back-to-school tips and ideas.


    Have a great day!


    You Oughta Know About…PebbleGo with a Freebie


    I am linking up with Jasmine at Buzzing with Mrs. McClain for her You Oughta Know Blog Hop. What a great idea!

    I am looking forward to reading up on some helpful tips from these fabulous bloggers!

    I think that You Oughta Know About PebbleGo. 

    The PebbleGo Website

    PebbleGo is a fabulous resource for research about all kinds of animals, biographies, Earth and space, and social studies. It has a WEALTH of information in a very kid-friendly format. Use of this resource requires a subscription, but our school buys a license to use it and we all love it! 

    The format allows students to look at certain aspects of each topic under tabs. The information is easy to understand and has buttons for a read aloud option.

    To see videos of this database in action, please click {HERE}.

    My First Encounter with PebbleGo

    In the past our media specialist has given a lesson about it on the SmartBoard, then gives students the chance to use the computers in the media center to look up a different animal on their own. The students each have a clipboard and an organizer to jot down bullets of information that they find. Here is an example of the organizer. 

    Someone at my school came up with an organizer that matches each tab for each animal. Here is a link to my “jazzed up” version (free) if you would like it. (It is not really that jazzed up. It just has a cuter font, so that makes me happy!)

    How I Model PebbleGo in the Classroom

    I do a lesson on my classroom SmartBoard so that we can fill out a big version of the organizer together. That way I can model how to access each section of information as well as each of the differentiating features. Also, I can model writing information in a bullet format. 

    On a different day, I model how to turn the bullets of information into sentences, paragraphs, and sometimes nonfiction books complete with a table of contents. 

    Publishing Our Information

    I have a craftivity that kind of matches this organizer for eagles. It is actually a booklet to record and write about observational findings while tuning into an Eagle Cam, such as the one at Berry College. Our class watched the Eagle Cam as often as possible last spring and fell.in.love with the baby and the parents. Apparently they will be back to nest again this fall and will probably lay an egg or two sometime in February.  If you would like to read more about that fabulous experience please see {THIS POST} and {THIS POST}. Personally, I see birds in a new and better-informed way. Who knows, I may become a birdwatcher!

    Look at the students’ booklets! They were super proud!

    Below is a preview of the eagle booklet resource. 

    If you would like to check this out on TPT, then please click {HERE}.

    New Craftivity

    I am currently working on a product 
    I have a newly posted product that fits the PebbleGo presentation of information perfectly. It is actually a craftivity. I will update this post when I get it uploaded. (I was “supposed to” have it uploaded today according to my self-imposed deadline.) These things take time…as you know. 

    *** It is officially completed! It was not that huge of a project, but somehow it turned into a longer-than-expected task. Needless to say, I learned lots of new things about working with clipart, ppt, etc.
    You can check it out {HERE} if you would like. 

    Hopefully you will get a chance to check out PebbleGo. You will be glad you did!

    Hop on over to the other blogs in this Blog Hop to see what other bloggers feel like You Oughta Know…

    I’m looking forward to becoming better informed!

    The collection has closed. Let other people know about it through twitter.

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    Thanks for stopping by!