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Brainy Apples: 2012
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Silence for Sandy Hook Elementary

Holiday Writing

Over the last couple of weeks, Miranda's class has been using our Reining in Reindeer Facts RAFT task and Mooseltoe response to literature & opinion writing. Her students used the internet and a variety of non-fiction texts from the library to gather information about reindeer. She gave her students the option to use our brochure template, create their own brochure using construction paper, or something else they think is creative. It took them about a week to complete their brochures. Here are some pics of how cute it turned out!
Miranda also read aloud the awesome holiday book Mooseltoe and had her students write a response to literature in the format of a letter. Her students had so much fun with this, we decided to turn it into a freebie to share with all of you! Here are some pics of how their moose turned out:
Both of these activities are in our 2 Brainy Apples Teachers Pay Teachers store: Reining in Reindeer Facts and Mooseltoe Response to Literature & Opinion Writing. And best of all, the Mooseltoe activity is a FREEBIE! Enjoy! :)

Winter Wonderland Linky Party!

Great Ending To A Great Week

Well, the ending to this week has been amazing...aside from the fact that the week went by WAY too fast...which is normally the case when you are out of school on vacation. But spending quality time with family and friends has been refreshing and much needed. Now we are geared back up for another 4 weeks of work until Christmas break! Let's do it!

We were also nominated multiple times for the Liebster Award.  We are so flattered and excited that people actually like our little blog! We promise to get it going more after the holiday!

Thanks so much to:
Mary @ Carrberry Creations 
Meg @ Fourth Grade Studio
Jayme @ Trendy in Third
Gina @ Beach Sand and Lesson Plans

The Liebster Award is given by bloggers to up and coming bloggers who have less than 200 followers...which would definitely be us! It is to show new bloggers that they are appreciated and to help spread the word about new blogs. I hope that sharing the news about these blogs will help them get more followers!

Here are the rules: (because we know that everything in life has rules!)
1. You must post 11 random things about yourself.
2. Answer the questions that the nominator set for you.
3. Create 11 questions for the people you nominate.
4. Choose 11 other blogs with less than 200 followers to nominate and link them in your post.
5. You can't "tag back" the other blog, but leave a comment on this post with the URL of your Liebster post so I can learn more about you and see who you nominate.

Pretty simple, right?????

Here are our random facts (I will post half, and then Miranda will have to come in and post hers later)
1. Although I try to eat healthy, I have a HUGE weakness for sweets- creme brulee, ice cream, gelato, cheesecake....Sour Patch Kids! My kids have to hide the bag or I eat them all. Since I have such a huge sweet tooth, I have become a great little baker :) I don't really know how to cook, but I can bake a mean cheesecake!

2. My husband Andy and I met while coaching at the same high school. He was coaching football and basketball and I was coaching basketball and track. We have been married for 10 years (man, how time flies!). Clearly it was a love of sports that brought us together :) He played football in college (until he broke his neck) and I played basketball in college. When we met I had to lay the ground rules that if we were to work out, he could NOT like another SEC football team besides Tennessee. He agreed and here we are today!

3. We have 3 children: Alex is 9, Katy is 8, and Dominic is 6. They are all a blessing and I can't remember what life was like before them (well, I do remember I got a LOT more sleep!)

4. Our favorite thing to do as a family is to travel. We love exploring new places and are always planning our next adventure. The best trip to date was in June to St. Croix. We found some incredibly cheap plane tickets for a travel period we could actually use (I HATE seeing these great sales, but then the blackout dates are the only times we could travel). We were there for a week and it was amazing in every sense possible. It was a trip none of us will ever forget and I am so thankful we got to experience it together. I am secretly hoping TpT will fund many more future family vacays!

5. I an DYING to get on the Amazing Race!!!! I force my husband to apply, but I know he would love it, too....maybe one day you will see us on there....I hope!

6. I am obsessed with a variety of reality The Amazing Race (of course!), America's Next Top Model, Gold Rush, Flipping Out, and my newest favorite- Duck Dynasty.

Now, we are to answer 11 questions that the bloggers above left for us, but since there are a possible 44 questions between all of them, we hope some...OK... a LOT of them are duplicates! My answer will be first. Miranda will have to come in later and answer :)

1. Where is your favorite place to vacation? Out of all the places I have visited, so far it is St. Croix by far! I can't wait to visit Switzerland, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan in the future I hope!
2. What is the one thing in your classroom you can't live without? My math manipulatives and my leveled book sets (OK, 2 things but I couldn't choose between the 2!)
3.  What is your favorite food? BBQ
4. What is your favorite holiday and why? Christmas because I love spending time with my family and the 2 weeks off isn't bad either!
5. Do you usually choose to teach in the summer? I tutor in the summer.
6. What do you like to do in your free time? 3 kids = No free time! If I do find time away, I like to exercise or do outdoor activities...or paint or sleep :)
7. When did you begin teaching? 2000
8. Have you always taught the grade you teach now? If not, what is your favorite grade to teach? Nope. I have taught 1st-5th. I think 2nd or 3rd is my fav.
9. Do you have a smart board/promethian board or the like in your classroom? Yes...don't know what I would do without it!
10.  Does your school ask you to follow a scripted program, or do you get to teach the books you want as long as you teach the standards? Standards based all the way. My principal trusts me to use whatever I want to teach what I need to teach.
11.  Who do you  most admire? I don't think I could list just one. There are quite a few who possess traits that I would love to have myself.

1) What grade do you currently teach? Have you taught any other grades? I am EIP for 3rd and 4th and Enrichment for K and 1st. I have been a classroom teacher for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd, and Title I teacher for 3rd, 4th, and 5th.
2) What is your favorite thing about teaching? Least favorite? Favorite= students. Least favorite= How the public seems to think that teachers are the reason why a child does not succeed.
3) If your school was donated $25,000, what would you want your principal to purchase? Hmmmm.....leveled book sets, math manipulatives, a fully equipped science lab.
4) What is your favorite TV show? This is a hard one.....The Amazing Race, Friends even though it isn't on anymore....NCIS, NCIS Los Angeles, Hawaii Five-O, Broke Girls, Criminal Minds....
5) If you could go back in time, what era would you choose to visit? 60s :)
6) What is your school mascot? Husky
7) How many kids are in your class? Ranges from 6-15 depending on the segment.
8) What is your current obsession? TpT :)
9) What is your idea of relaxing after a crazy day of teaching? Exercising followed by a glass of tropical fruit wine
10) Do you have a favorite holiday treat or drink? Spiced apple cider, fudge
11) Heels or flats? Heels for a night out, flats for teaching!

1. What is your favorite subject to teach? Science
2. What movie could you watch over and over? Goonies
3. Would you rather live in a place with a cold or warm climate? WARM!
4. Do you have a favorite vacation spot? St. Croix
5. Do you cook most nights or eat out? Cook (well, Andy cooks!)
6. What professional book have you read lately or do you have any that you couldn't live without? Hmmm... I have read so many it is hard to choose one...I  would say anything by Stiggins.
7. What do you do for you that is fun? Exercise, bake, paint, sleep :)
8. Are you a dog or cat person? Cat
9. Are you a middle child, oldest, or baby of the family? Or are you an only child? Baby
10. How did you pick your blog name? It just hit us! We were thinking 2 Brainy Peaches because we live in Georgia, but then changed it to apples since teachers and apples go hand in hand :)
11. What is your favorite dessert? Creme Brûlée!

1. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live? Either on the Mediterranean Coast or a tropical island.
2. What is one of your most memorable moments in teaching? When a parent gave me a shirt that said "Inspire with Kindness" because that is what I had done for her son :)
3. If you could only eat one food the rest of your life, what would it be? Ice cream because I could change the flavors :)
4. Name a favorite book read in recent years. I don't read a lot for pleasure, but I did like The Hunger Games trilogy.
5. Name a favorite childhood TV show. So many to choose from! I am going to go with......Thundercats!
6. If you had to spend the day at a sporting event, what would you attend? University of Tennessee football!
7. PC or Mac? Mac
8. Night owl or early riser? Night owl
9. Favorite current TV show or movie. 
10.Favorite holiday. Christmas
11. If you could do any other job, what would you do? A movie star! :) Or work in forensics or be a vet :)

So here are our 11 questions for our nominees:
1. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?
2. Name a favorite childhood TV show.
3. If you could do any other job, what would you do?
4. Where is your dream vacation spot?
5. What is your favorite food/dessert and drink?
6. What is your fondest memory?
7. What is your secret talent?
8. What is your favorite current TV show or movie?
9. What do you want to do when you retire?
10. What is the most impulsive thing you have ever done?
11. What do you do for fun for yourself?

Don’t forget to leave me a link to your blog when you’ve answered! I look forward to learning more about you. :)

Now, here are the blogs that we nominate!

Cyber Monday + Tuesday Sale!!!!

Hey everyone! We are so excited to announce the Cyber Monday + Tuesday sale at Teachers Pay Teachers! Be sure to use the code  if you want to get up to 28% off! ALL the items in our 2 Brainy Apples store will be 20% off plus you get the extra 10% off using the code which makes a 28% discount! Be sure to visit us and other teachers' stores. You will be sure to find a lot of amazing items that you can use in your classroom. See you there!

Teachers Help Teachers

Here is a wonderful idea to help those teachers affected by Sandy. If you are interested in helping in some way, please check it out! We are honored to help out!


Idea for Word Wall

We all know how important incorporating word walls are into our daily activities. Students in grades K-5 all benefit from learning how to utilize this important tool. Most of the time teachers purchase already made word walls with the letter cards and word cards. Some teacher would rather make their own. I have done both. This is the last word wall I created and I have been using it for years. Instead of the traditional letter cards, or letters with familiar objects or animals that begin with that letter, I decided to have flags from around the world. Not only were they fun to make, but my students LOVE trying to figure out each country. It really motivates them to get on the computer and do a little research to figure out the countries each flag represents. I have also found it to be a great time filler for those early finishers. They hop on the desktops in the classroom and dig to see who can find out all the countries first :) Do you have any good ideas for your word wall you would like to share?

Flash Sale! 25 Followers!

In honor of gaining our 25th follower, 2 Brainy Apples promised to have a 24 hour flash sale of 25% off our entire store......being new we can't figure out how to discount our store 25% because it isn't an option in the drop box. So we are having a 20% off sale for 48 hours in hopes to make up for it :) Visit us at We will be adding a few new items this weekend, so be sure to check us out!

Thanks to all our followers for helping us get off to a wonderful start!


Hello everyone! We are so excited to begin this journey with you all! We are new to blogging, so please bear with us as we learn as we go. 

Our purpose is to "Inspire an Educator's Mind and Spirit."  Being educators ourselves, we are all too familiar with the obstacles that come with this profession. Throw in a new curriculum and.......let's just say we have to be a support group for each other! We want to provide fellow educators support with the upcoming implementation of the Common Core State Standards and motivate all educators who choose this selfless profession. 

We will be updating our blog regularly with cool ideas for your classroom: lessons, projects, organization, communication with parents, and much much more. We hope to see you here often!

You can also:
check us out @
like us on FB @ 2 Brainy Apples
follow us on Twitter @2brainyapples
check out our boards on Pinterest @ TwoBrainyApples