Adoption, Foster Care, Love, Obedience, parenting, Reflection, Special Education

Walking in Obedience

Sometimes God speaks so loudly to our hearts it silences all our fears. Other voices grow quieter and matter less. That is happening to me now.

It started on New Year’s Day while driving home from church. My husband Andy, said that he felt like the Holy Spirit was urging him to start praying about our family, and specifically what was next for us. We both felt like our family wasn’t complete, but we were not sure in what direction God was steering us. We always just knew before. Our babies turned one year old, and we knew it was time to start planning for the next one.

This time felt different. We fasted and prayed and heard nothing. But God spoke loud and clear in the days and weeks that followed. He placed Foster Care in our paths almost everywhere we turned. He used other people’s voices, strangers, our son, worship music and scripture (Go figure).

For months, I had a whole list of reasons why my answer to God was an emphatic “No.” The list included the safety and ages of my children, my husband’s busy schedule, STRESS, finances, and my intense and unrelenting fear.

My sweet Lord began to tenderly answer back with all of His reasons. The items on my list paled in comparison to My Father’s and one by one became non-issues. Except for the last one. That annoying, overwhelming fear lingered.

“Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.” James 1:27 NLT

I’d read this verse many times before. But the words in my bible suddenly seemed more black and white than ever before.

So I said, “Okay.”

“Sometimes my very best

Is only my weakest yes

You see strength in every movement”

– Steffany Gretzinger

Andy came home from work that day, and with fear in my voice I asked, “So what are we gonna do?” He knew what I was asking and said, “We’re just going to walk in obedience, until God closes a door.”

My face: 😳

So we made the decision to start the process to become foster parents. Saying it out loud made the fear melt away, and I was overcome with His warmth and peace.

“Jesus, Jesus, You make the darkness tremble

Jesus, Jesus, You silence fear”

– Mosaic MSC

Even though we only came to this decision for our family a few months ago, I can see how God has been shaping me for this for years. It was early in my teaching career when I realized how deeply I could love a child who wasn’t my own.

I wish I could say things have gotten easier since we decided to be obedient and take steps towards becoming foster parents. That is not true. That is not even in the vicinity of truth. The stress of three little kids and the busyness of our current season has actually intensified. Life seems to have gotten exponentially harder all the way up to this very moment. The fact that we still started taking our preservice classes on Friday is evidence that God is driving this. It would have been so easy to scratch that one off of our never ending, ever growing to do list. But I trust God. He silences all my fears. I have peace. That is the beauty of moment by moment surrender to Jesus.

“And further and further my heart moves away from the shore

Whatever it looks like, whatever may come I am Yours”

– Jenn Johnson

IMG_4126

Love, Courtney

Advertisements
Back to School, Classroom Stuff, educators, Intervention, Reading, resource, Resources, Sale, Special Education

Teachers Pay Teachers Love Back to School Sale Going on NOW!!!

I can’t believe it is August already.  Time to get ready for back to school!!!

Teachers Pay Teachers ❤ Back to School is going on now!  EVERYTHING in my store is 20% off and with the promo code you can save 28%!

bts15600x320

I loved how this letter I received from TpT the other day started.

“Dear Teacher,

We are in awe of you. For all that you give. And for all that you do. We think you’re outstanding, and we want you to love your back to school season just as much as we love you!”

⭐ All my Fluency Packets are on sale.  Each one includes 35 fluency passages and 3 days worth of activities/lesson plans to accompany them!  They provide reading intervention including fluency and comprehension for the entire year!

⭐ All my BUNDLES are also on sale!    So you could have reading intervention including fluency and comprehension for the entire year, for multiple grade levels!  This would allow you to differentiate for your classroom, or if you work with multiple grade levels, the bundles are perfect.  And on sale.  Right now.  Did I mention that?

Additionally, everything else in my store including

Alphabet and Phonics

Behavior & Social Skills

Fluency Sets

Fonts

Math

Sight Words

Writing

I hope you can find exactly what you need and I hope you really do LOVE back to school.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

(Jeremiah 29:11)

Love,

Courtney signature

Back to School, Blog Hop, comprehension, fluency, Freebies, Reading, Resources, Special Education

Back to School Blog Hop with Freebies eBook and Giveaways Galore!

 I have some awesome treats for you!  24 special education teachers {including myself} have collaborated to create a offer you an ebook jam packed with tips, freebies and ideas!  Isn’t that exciting?  Everyone who contributed is an Intervention Specialist, Blogger and Teacher Author.  What an awesome back to school present for you to start the new school year off right!

I know you’ll LOVE it.

11745348_10155856180815711_600731323460532191_n

Back to School *Free* EBook

But wait…there’s more!

I’m also hosting a giveaway of my own!  You can enter for a chance to win a 3 Grade Level Fluency & Comprehension Reading Intervention Bundle for *FREE*!!!  That’s a $28 value, and I’m allowing the winner to choose the three grade levels that they need in order to differentiate for their students’ needs.  I have Reading & Comprehension Fluency Intervention Packets for Grades K-5 available. How cool is that?

banner for quote edited

Reading Intervention Bundle Giveaway!

Addition, Back to School, comprehension, fluency, Fun Stuff, Resources, Sale, Special Education, Summer, Teachers pay Teachers

Would You Like Some Special Education Dollar Deals?

So I’ve teamed up with some other special education bloggers to bring you something really fun and special.  Announcing Special Education Dollar Deals, AKA, SPED Dollar Deals.  To get in on the fun and super savings you’ll need to search #speddollardeals on Teachers Pay Teachers website to find all the goodies.  You’ll be saving 70-80% off the regular prices!  SPED  Dollar Deals is offered TODAY, Wednesday, July 7 only!

11698545_10100816293388600_8898518395760414188_n (2)

So don’t delay!  I have not one, not two, but three dollar deals in my TpT store.  They are…

original-1798537-1

Regularly priced at $5.00 and yours for just $1.00 today only!

original-1289225-1 (2)

Regularly priced at $4.00 and yours today for a buck!

original-987172-1

Regularly priced at $6.00 and yours for just $1.00?  Yes, its true.

Get ’em while you can.  😉

“So I recommend having fun, because there is nothing better for people to do in this world than to eat, drink and enjoy life.  That way they will experience some happiness along with all the hard work God gives them.”

(Ecclesiastes 8:15)

Love,

Courtney signature

April, Assessment, comprehension, fluency, Intervention, resource, Special Education, Teachers pay Teachers

Spring Fluency Close Reading Passages & Comprehension Activities {Garden Bugs}

This bundle contains 5 original fluency passages I wrote and 3-4 comprehension and extension activities to accompany each one. The theme is garden creatures and it is just right for spring time!  The passages are all nonfiction informational text and I used real photographs of nature to illustrate the text!

spring fluency set preview-11

spring fluency set preview-2 spring fluency set preview-3 spring fluency set preview-5

Using one fluency passage per week, this would provide interventions for 5 weeks.  You could also focus on one fluency passage per day, depending on your needs and schedule. These materials could be used as whole group or small group fluency instruction or as homework.  For each passage there is a teacher copy that you can print in color and reuse. There is also a black and white copy that you can print off for each student and record their scores on it. The comprehension questions and activities allow students to spend time on each selection and participate in close reading strategies to build reading skills. It draws upon Bloom’s Taxonomy to encourage higher levels of thinking skills.

Flesch Kincaid Readability Grade Levels range from 4.2-4.5 and are in chronological order. They are all on a fourth grade reading level.

*Suggestion for Use for Small Group Intervention*
These fluency passages, comprehension questions and extension activities can be used as a reading intervention using the hot, warm and cold read strategy. For each week and fluency passage, it would look something like this:

Day 1: Cold read, discussion, comprehension questions (Lower levels of Blooms Taxonomy including Remembering and Understanding)
Day 2: Warm read, discussion, comprehension questions or activity (Middle levels of Blooms Taxonomy including Applying and Analyzing)
Day 3: Hot read, discussion, extension activity (Highest levels of Blooms Taxonomy including Evaluating and Creating).

The genres of the fluency passages are all non-fiction, informational text. The materials in this packet are aligned to several fourth Grade Common Core Language Arts standards.

I tried to make the fluency passages a little more fun and interesting than other ones I’ve used. I included my fluency progress monitoring graph to track students’ fluency progress with this packet. I also included labels for file folders to create “fluency files” for each student.

I also tried to make this a great value for you!

If you like this, please rate me or follow me.  I am so happy to share this with you!

“The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come…”

{Song of Solomon 2:12}

Love,

Courtney signature

Assessment, Behavior, Blog Hop, comprehension, educators, fluency, Freebies, Intervention, Love, Reading, Resources, Social Skills, Special Education, Spring, Teachers pay Teachers, Telling Time

My Turn! {Special Education Blog Hop FINAL Day!}

Welp, here we are! The last day of February and my turn to spread a little Special Education love in the form of *FREEBIES!*

Today only, I am sharing not one, not two, but three fantastical freebies from my Teachers Pay Teachers store.

1) Because telling time is an essential life skill!

original-1011701-1

2) Because teaching social skills and replacement behaviors is

Just. So. Hard.

original-850431-1 (3)

Aaaaaaaaaaand…

3) Because spring is right around the corner!  {Praise the Lord!}

original-601922-1 (2)

If you download, please show me some LOVE in the form of feedback and follows.

I hope you have all had a great month and enjoyed the blog hop! So many talented teacher authors and bloggers coming together. How awesome! I have definitely gained some great ideas and resources!

Don’t forget to show love all year round.

“A friend loves at ALL times…”

(Proverbs 17:17)

Love Always,

Courtney signature

comprehension, fluency, Intervention, Reading, resource, Sale, Special Education, Teachers pay Teachers

A Sitewide Sale & A New Product!

Teachers Pay Teachers is throwing a sitewide sale called “Teachers Are Heroes!” Love it. The sale is this Wednesday, February 25. Use the promo code HEROES to receive 28% off your purchases!

heroes-1

I recently added a product which I am super excited about. It’s a fluency and comprehension pack of 8 passages on a sixth grade reading level. The theme? Social Media. What could be more relevant?! It is regularly priced $5.00 but will be marked down to $4.00 during the sale, plus you can get it for an additional 8% off using the code!

social media fluency preview-1

social media fluency preview-22 social media fluency preview-12 social media fluency preview-6

This packet contains 8 fluency passages with accompanying comprehension activities. The fluency passages range from 6.1 – 6.9 Flesch Kincaid readability levels. They are all on a sixth grade reading level. Each passage describes a different social media platform including Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Snapchat, Instagram, YouTube and Vine. They are all nonfiction informational text.

Using one fluency passage per week, this would provide interventions for 8 weeks. For each passage there is a teacher copy that you can print in color and reuse. There is also a black and white copy that you can print off for each student and record their scores on it. The comprehension questions and activities allow students to spend time on each selection and participate in close reading strategies to build reading skills. It draws upon Bloom’s Taxonomy to encourage higher levels of thinking skills.

*How to Use*
These fluency passages, comprehension questions and extension activities were designed to use as a reading intervention using the hot, warm and cold read strategy. For each week and fluency passage, it would look something like this:

Day 1: Cold read, discussion, comprehension questions (Lower levels of Blooms Taxonomy including Remembering and Understanding)
Day 2: Warm read, discussion, comprehension questions or activity (Middle levels of Blooms Taxonomy including Applying and Analyzing)
Day 3: Hot read, discussion, extension activities (Highest levels of Blooms Taxonomy including Evaluating and Creating).

These materials could be used in other ways as well including as whole group fluency instruction or as homework. The materials in this packet are aligned to several Sixth Grade Common Core Language Arts standards.

I try to make my fluency passages a little more fun than other ones I’ve used and who doesn’t love social media? I included my fluency progress monitoring graph to track students’ fluency progress with this packet. I also included labels for file folders to create “fluency files” for each student.

***Make sure you teach your students about safe Internet use rules, social media etiquette and guidelines. For the majority of these sites, you need to be at least 13 years of age. You may want to get parent permission before using these materials with your students.***

Feel free to use the Q&A link on TPT for any questions you might have!

#Ireallyappreciateyourfeedbackandfollows
#Iamsohappytosharethiswithyou

“But test everything; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.”

(1 Thessalonians 5: 21-22)

Love,

Courtney signature