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My humorous thoughts about life.

"My Humorous and Helpful Thoughts About Teaching / Educational Resources for Your Classroom / Music and Random Fun"

Friday, July 3, 2020

Giveaways and Dollar Deals for Teachers

Amazon Gift Card

Teachers, I have news for you. Check this out!

Go to  for a chance to win a $75 gift card before today ends! Just think of all you could do to get your school year off to a great start!

Dollar Deals Today and Tomorrow

Also, I am partnering with an amazing group of sellers to bring you our bi-annual dollar deals! Just go to TpT here! You will find 70 pages of resources priced at just $1 to get your school year off to a great start.

I am offering two resources for one dollar:

Be sure to stop by these two events before they are over!

Catch My Products

Monday, June 15, 2020

What If?


After the deadly shooting of Rayshard Brooks at the Atlanta Wendy's my mind is a jumble with the thoughts about this. Here was a situation that never should have escalated to the point of Mr. Brooks' death, and it becomes clear that this was another case of racism.

Let's imagine that I was the sleeping person in the Wendy's line. Maybe I had too much to drink and Wendy's is so slow that yes, I fell asleep in the line. What if an employee of Wendy's saw this sleeping white woman blocking the order line in the parking lot? Would he or she have called the police on me? I imagine a Wendy's employee stepping beside my car, asking if I was okay, and then instructing me to move my car. End of story? No. They probably would have offered me a cup of water to make sure I was okay.

First off, everyone knows the way the police have treated black people. Even a nice cop will incite fear in the approached black person. There was no need to ever call the police, to begin with, on Mr. Brooks. But they did.

Mr. Brooks was found to have an alcohol level just slightly about the legal limit and placed under arrest for driving under the influence. He wasn't driving. He was parked. Maybe he knew the condition he was in and pulled into Wendy's to get food in his system to help to sober up. In other words, having been in a not great state of mind, he took precautions to fix it. I give him credit for that. He didn't continue to drive.

The argument here is that he had been driving or how would he have gotten to this spot. Fine. Would they have arrested me for the same act? I don't know, but my gut thinks, 'No.'

Although Mr. Brooks started with his "Yes, Sirs; No, Sirs" and full cooperation in the arrest, something changed. He resisted, grabbed the stun gun, and ran off. He pointed the stunner toward the policeman but never actually shot it. I read a defense from an officer stating that "IF" he had stunned the policeman, he could have taken his gun and have been a threat. But as I said, he didn't shoot it. Plus, the officer had a partner with him.

Different actions by the police were now needed.

  1. Let him run away. They have his car, so it would not have been hard to find him.
  2. Chase, at the risk of being stunned.
  3. Use the other officers stunner to calm him.
  4. Shoot the leg.
I had an officer friend who once told me that the police are trained to shoot to kill. I argued, why not injure him, in which he repeated, "We are trained to shoot to kill." Maybe it's time for some new training.

Finally, please do not take this as victim blaming, but I have to mention it. Every black parent trains their sons on how to act around the police. Everyone knows that some cops are racist and do not act as they should, so why did Rayshard Brooks resist arrest and run? Maybe he was scared. Maybe he was drunk and not thinking straight. Either way, I'm sure his mama is crying out in anguish, "Why didn't you listen to me! Why?"


First up is Twisted Sister with, "We're Not Gonna Take It."

Next up, is Michael Jackson with "Black or White."

Saturday, June 13, 2020

Teachers! Chance to Win $250 Plus $50 Charity Donation

A Chance to Win an Amazing Prize

Bounce into Summer! Start preparing now for your Back-to-School needs or pay some bills with a chance to win YOUR CHOICE OF or A COMBINATION OF $250 TpT gift card, Amazon gift card, or PayPal cash. An additional $50 will be sent to the charity of your choice! There will be two winners. This is made possible by a group of amazing teacher-authors who have come together to provide these prizes. Wouldn’t this be great to help with your school year needs? Or maybe you just want something for yourself. You deserve it!

Enter the raffle here:

👉 Raffle Ends at 12:00 AM Central Time, Monday June 15th (6/15/2020). The lucky winners will be announced as soon as they are confirmed on 6/16/2020.

👉 Be sure to give a shout out to your fellow team members!

👉 You must respond within 8 hours of being contacted or a new random winner will be selected. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook, Instagram, or Teachers Pay Teachers. You understand that you are not providing your information Facebook , Instagram, or Teachers Pay Teachers. No Purchase Required.

Good Luck!
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The Gifted Department Store

Sunday, June 7, 2020

You are Not Alone #MotivationMonday

Motivation Monday

As Monday rolls around again, I'm tasked with giving you advice to motivate you; however, I'm struggling with motivation myself. There is so much trauma in today's world that many of us have a hard time focusing on what needs to be done. My post today is to tell you, that YOU ARE NOT ALONE.

I've seen people discussing failures in my health journey group as well as various
Art by Ron Leishman
other groups such as focusing in business and work. There are so many difficult situations reported in the news, and I confess to being a news junkie who listens to it all.

An analysis of today shows us that we are reliving not one but three difficult historical times, all at once. First off, we are flashed back to the 1960s. This was a time of racial turmoil when individuals fought for black rights. I have to wonder, are we any better than we were in the 1960s? I hope so. For one, many people of a variety of races in cities around the world have joined together as one voice. This is huge since the mistreated people are no longer alone in their protests. But we have serious trouble with police violence toward black people. Sensitivity training, social workers helping people in trouble, or something else must be done! Twelve nights of protests have brought about some change, but we have so much further to go. How do we get motivated to do anything with these bigger concerns? I don't know.

We also have many living like post 1929. This was a time when many have found themselves out of work or struggling to make ends meet. People who have never sought out help or thought they would ever join a food line have come forth for a bag or groceries or a bite to eat. Furthermore, our government sent one bailout check to Americans in need. But for many, this is not nearly enough. If you don't know how to pay your bills, you're probably not motivated. I understand.

Art by Ron Leishman
We are also fighting a pandemic, just as our grandparents or great grandparents fought in 1918. True that COVID-19 is different than the Spanish flu, but horrible, nonetheless. A main difference is the attitude about the disease that has killed over 110,000 people in our country. Many do not take this seriously because they do not believe the numbers are accurate or are convinced it is not a problem for them.

If you have no one close to you who has had the disease and hear only 1% or 2% of people die, maybe you think this is media hype, too. Please believe that being among the 20% with symptoms, and maybe even surviving, is no picnic, either. Back in March, my sister was sicker than she'd ever been in her life. We worried about her daily and wanted that text message or call telling us she was okay; however, there were some days when she was too weak to let us know about her health. Although  she recovered from the disease after over two weeks, her cough lingered. She also had trouble regaining her sense of smell. Even in her days of recovery, she felt like she had just finished a marathon. If someone you care about is ill, or you worry about people who are compromised, it's tough to be motivated to do anything.

For these reasons, it's hard for me to get motivated to do anything. Hopefully, you have more motivation than me. Also, please understand that YOU ARE NOT ALONE.

Monday Music Moves Me

The theme for this week's Monday Music Moves Me is songs that start with /J/. One song immediately came to my mind, especially in light of how the world is today and what we need. We actually saw these old men perform in Tunica, Mississippi several months back.

Here is "Joy to the World" by Three Dog Night. Did you know that a three dog night is a night that is so cold that you have to sleep with three dogs to stay warm?

Next up is "Jaded" by Aerosmith. People become jaded when bored or annoyed, which seems to fit a lot of us these days. We have had too much bad news, so here is "Jaded."

Finally, here is a song by the Eagles called, "James Dean." Dean was an actor, known as a rebel, who tragically died way too young in a car wreck. Since so many are feeling rebellious, I saw this J song as fitting with my theme.

Sunday, May 31, 2020

Black Lives Matter on #MotivationMonday and Music

Black Lives Matter

Yesterday, I saw a black man jogging through my neighborhood, and for the first time, I wondered if he was safe to do so. I thought about Ahmaud Arbery who innocently did the same in Atlanta and what I'd heard about a neighbor of mine who called the police on a worker because he was black. Each night, I watch images of the riots throughout the country due to a policeman kneeling on a man's neck even though he said that he couldn't breath. Why didn't the cop get off of him? Why would people come into a private home and start shooting? I've often felt confused about the injustice of different water fountains or people told to sit at the back of a bus, in the past, but we still have current ugliness that must not be tolerated.      

#blacklivesmatter #motivationmonday #teachersfollowteachers

Some people say that "All lives matter." Sure they do, but we don't need to be reminded about everyone. Police do not abuse white people. I am safe to walk down the street without being shot because of the color of my skin, so why even mention other lives when black lives are the ones in danger? 

Although I do not agree with violent protests, I understand the anger. It's like the Boston Tea Party or the expression, "The squeaky wheel gets the oil." Now, are people squeaking enough to make a change?

How about a bit of music?

First up is Bob Marley with "Get Up, Stand Up." These little kids are sooo cute!

Next up is Marvin Gaye with "What's Going On?"

And finally, here is John Legend with "Glory."

Sunday, May 24, 2020

Guest Blogger Hostess for Wellness

My daughter, Judy, sent me a great article that she wrote for a post. I am sharing it with you!

Guest Blogger

Hi everyone,

This Wellness Wednesday took me on quite an adventure. I wanted to do something fun and figured a wellness beverage could do the trick.  Little did I know the history of the smoothie in America is a complex story intertwined with scientific breakthroughs and counter-culture. (You got stuck with a history major for this Wellness Wednesday!)  The smoothie has been around in different cultures well before it made it to the US.  India has the lassi which combines mango, yogurt and spices for its treat. Additionally, with their plethora of tropical fruits, blended fruit drinks have been around in Latin America for a long time often referred to as “fruit slushes”  

The history of the “smoothie” is connected with the invention of the blender in the 1930s by  Stephen Poplawski. The blender was then perfected in 1935 by Fred Osius and called the Waring Blender. Osius claimed his machine would “revolutionize American drinks!”

The popularization of smoothies also relates to the start of  health food crazes and workouts popularized by Fred Lalanne. “Lalanne was the first person to open a combination health-food store and gym, the first to come up with a weight loss breakfast meal replacement drink and to advocate weight training and nutrition.”

But I know the most important question, and what brought along this research project in the first place is *drumroll* where did smoothies get their name!?

Steven Kuhnau opened his first Smoothie King in Louisiana in 1973. Kuhnau was lactose intolerant and felt a little jealous he couldn’t enjoy a milkshake like his friends. He decided to create a yummy beverage that was safe for his sensitive stomach. “Kuhnau didn’t invent the name. He just branded it, [he said] the first time he heard the word was in reference to fruit and fruit juice based drinks made by “hippies” in the late 60’s. Prior to Kuhnau’s “Smoothie King”, the name “smoothie was used to describe everything from women’s bras and girdles, to ball point pens, car paint and machinery. There was even a band named “The Smoothies”! It wasn’t until Kuhnau opened his health food store and called his drinks “smoothies”, to appeal to the already health conscious hippies who knew what the term meant, that the name took off.”  

So as the weather gets warm and we start looking for some healthy treats, the smoothie drinkers in the fund development team would like to share our favorite smoothie recipes with you! Cheers! Feel free to send photos of all of your concoctions  J
Rainbow Smoothie | The First Year
The Logan:
½ cup OJ
1 cup frozen berries
Handful of spinach
1 whole banana

The PJ Baytarian:
1 cup soy milk
1/2 cup rolled oats
1 banana, broken into chunks
14 frozen strawberries
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons white sugar

The Judy (inspired by the Anna at Beyond Juice):
½ cup blueberries
½ cup of strawberries
½ banana
Coconut water
Squirt of lime juice
Scoop of peanut butter
A dash of Orange Juice
(honestly my measurements are guesstimates, use your best judgement!)

To read more on the fascinating topic, check out some of my resources J

Stay safe and healthy and enjoy this beautiful weather today. J

Judy Lansky
Director of Corporate Initiatives
Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan


Musical Monday Moves Me

Musical Monday's theme is flowers, so I'm posting a classic. There is no flower song more beautiful than the Waltz of the Flowers by Pyotr Ilyitch Tchaikovsky. Tchaikovsky was one of the best composers of all times, so I'm sure you've heard this one, even if it was on an episode of The Munsters. LOL! I'm curious to see if anyone else chooses Waltz of the Flowers for this theme. I hope you enjoy this classic!

Friday, May 15, 2020

Spring Freebies and Flash Freebies

Hurry in for our freebies and flash freebies. Even though my resources are forever free, some of my group mates are offering a limited time frame on their offers so check us out here.

If you want MY freebies you will find 

Great fun for kids #TeachersPayTeachers #education #free


easy class interaction #TpT #Accountable Talk

by an easy click of the link. Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Teachers Pay Teachers Sitewide Sale May 5th & 6th

Find products on Google Slides for Distance Learning for kids
Start shopping, now here!

As part of Teacher Appreciation Week, TpT is having a sitewide sale. Everything in my store will be listed at 20% off, with the exception of my newest resources:

that are currently marked at 50% off until the end of sale.

However, if you use the promo code: THANKYOU20, you will get an additional 5% off of your purchase!

Because so many teachers are teaching online, I've added a lot of resources to Google Slides. Of course if you'd rather have PowerPoints or printable resources, these are available in other formats, too. Check these out!

Primary Resources


Middle School

High School

I also have a lot of book studies for sale. Link to Book Studies A lot of teachers have been buying these, probably because they are on PowerPoint, so they are easy to use remotely.
Good luck with remote teaching!
The Gifted Department Store

If you don't already follow my store, you are missing out on notifications for half price deals on new resources. Click HERE to follow me. Thanks!

Sunday, May 3, 2020

Memories Before Quarantine

Being stuck at home leads to chats about the good old days. Here is a conversation that took place in our family's chat text group.

Text Chat with Kids

J: Mom how did your parents meet

Me: At a waistline party! They measured everyone's waist and charged the number of inches found in order to go in. My mom used to brag about paying 24¢.

J: Oh ya hahaha

Me: Different time period, right?

D: You mean the going to a party part?

E: What's a party? I forgot.

D: Dang, maybe you should go back to school if you've forgotten your entire job

E: You make a good point

Monday Music Moves Me Freebie

Since my parents met in the forties, I've decided to post a few good old songs from their era (okay, they met in the late forties, but close enough). I still love Glenn Miller, so here is a tribute to him.

First up is one of my favorite songs by Glenn Miller, In the Mood:

Next, Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy:

And finally, this masterpiece of music, singing, and dance in Chattanooga Choo Choo:

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Dollar Sales are Here!

Hi, y'all!

I'm participating in TWO dollar day sales that I don't want you to miss out on, so check these out:

  1. Today, April 28, One Day Only 

Save lots of money with our Dollar Day Sale. Click here for a list of all products on sale and see all the bargains. But this sale ends at midnight so don't delay. 

My two products are only $1 for today:

   2. At Home Educators' Sale

At-Home Educators, we are here for you! Take a look at these distance resources for only $1.00 today (Tuesday) and tomorrow (Wednesday). Go HERE for tons of resources to help you out! You can find my resources at:

Also, feel free to Catch My Products!

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Distance Learning Giveaway Starts April 23!

We understand how difficult times are with distance learning. We want to help by offering you a variety of products you can use with your students.

You’ll get:
  • Boom Cards
  • Google Classroom/Slides
  • Printable Packets
Check them out here:

It’s EASY to Enter
Comment on this blog post by answering this question:
•How are things going for you with distance learning?
Enter the raffle here:
We’d love it if you’d share with your colleagues!

🍀🍀Good Luck!🍀🍀
Raffle ends at midnight on Sunday, April 26, 2020.
The winner will be announced on April 27th .

Our Terms:
You must be a teacher, paraprofessional or education administrator to win and provide proof by providing your school name and grade level within 48 hours after contacted or a new random winner will be selected. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook, Instagram, or Teachers Pay Teachers. You understand that you are providing your information to the owner of this page and not to Facebook, Instagram, or Teachers Pay Teachers. No Purchase Required.

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Funny Moments in Teaching and Great Music

Humor First

Have a laugh during quarantine #iteachtoo
Art by Ron Leishman Digital Toonage
Since we're all at home, I figure it's time for a little humor in our dark days. Here are a few teaching situations to make you chuckle. One of my favorite stories was of the seventh grade teacher who came to class without her glasses. She had a most persistent student in the back of the room who kept his hand raised but refused to answer when called upon. After repeatedly calling on this silent student, she became angry and yelled at him, until one member of the class told her that her "student" was the overhead projector.

I also recall the teacher who went to the theater. Periodically throughout the show, she waved to a man who continually waved at her. At the end of the show, she approached the man to learn that she didn't actually know him, like she thought. He was merely flirting with her. She said, "I'm sorry. I thought you were one of my children's fathers." The man turned red and abruptly took off.

Stories are best told in three, so here is another favorite from my gifted and talented classroom. We were partaking in a Jeopardy Game in honor of Black History Month. The following conversation gives you a peek into the bright students that I've had the pleasure of teaching.

Girl: Who was Collin Powell?

Boy: His name is Colin!

Girl: I don't like names that sound like body parts.

Boy: Really? I have an Uncle Pancreas.

I hope you enjoyed the laughs and find ways to make new ones, even in our at home situation!

Distance Learning

If you are stuck at home, here are my newest resources for distance learning. All of these are being offered in Google Applications for student downloading.

Teachers may purchase complete and colorful plans for computer use.
I just love David Shannon's picture book, 
A Bad Case of Stripes

Your students will be able to complete distance learning with this resource!
Inside this easy to use resource, you'll find:
  • Introduction to Story
  • Meet the Author
  • Vocabulary Activity
  • Vocabulary Fill Ins
  • Critical Thinking Questions
  • Book Review Directions
  • Answer Key

You need to give students grammar practice whether online, at home, or in
Make distance learning easy with multiple lessons on computer.
school, but you do not have an easy resource to capture kids' attention. Find this beautiful and useful resource right at your fingertips in Google Drive!
Inside this easy to use Google Slide presentation, you'll find:
  • "I can" Statement
  • Core Standards
  • 38 Lessons
  • Practice Identifying Basic Parts of Speech
  1. Nouns
  2. Verbs
  3. Adjectives
  4. Pronouns
  5. Prepositions
  • Practice Writing Sentences with Specific Parts of Speech
  • Complete Answer Key

Are you looking for an easy to use historical fiction passage with vocabulary work and questions that can be shared through remote learning? Look no further. This resource in Google Drive will motivate your students through a reading passage just for them!
kids read about the Great Depression with computer lesson on TpT.
Inside this easily shared Google document you'll find:
  • Six page historical fiction story
  • Twenty vocabulary words
  • Fifteen vocabulary fill in sentences
  • A word search puzzle
  • Eleven high level discussion questions
  • Complete Answer Key

Musical Monday Moves Me

Now, it's time for some musical selections. This week is a freebie. During the lockdown, my daughter, husband, and I were painting Erica's old bedroom. Since my husband hadn't painted a room since 1966, he put on the oldies station to reminisce those times. Here are a few of the songs we heard from the 1966 countdown.

First up is a timeless classic from The Mamas & The Papas, "California Dreaming."

Next, enjoy Simon and Garfunkel with, "Homeward Bound."

Finally, The New Vaudeville Band with "Winchester Cathedral" was a fun song of the past!

Sunday, April 12, 2020

Monday's Music Plays the Fool

It's Monday, again, and I have a few things to tell you. First off, our music theme is songs with "fool" in them, but I want to wish my husband a Happy Birthday. I guess he's the fool for marrying me.

Happy Birthday, Mitchell!

First up is Beatles related, and the Beatles are his favorite band of all times. Here is Paul McCartney with Fool on the Hill.

Next up is a foolish little video of my grandchild. You read that right. Great times are coming in October with a wiggle, wiggle, wiggle! Here's something put together by my son, the future papa. In honor of becoming a grandmother, I will be sending out a great free resource to my mail group. If you want it, you have to sign up before I send out the mailing, soon. You can join my group HERE.

And finally, keeping up with the "Fool" theme is another homemade film. My daughter made this movie and mastered it to great music. It was for a movie quarantine contest that she won! The music in this is fun so have a listen to this original piece called The Bearded and the Restless.