Saturday, May 26, 2012

Happy Memorial Day!

I hope you are having a happy and restful Memorial Day weekend!  Our family will also be celebrating 2 birthdays tomorrow, so this will be a busy, fun weekend for us for sure! 

Just wanted to share a link with you.  This is an awesome lesson for use in Children's Church or Sunday School, or even with your personal children.

I want to stop and say that I am so thankful for all of those who serve or have served in our American armed forces, especially those that have paid the ultimate price.  I am also so thankful for a Savior whose death brought life to us all!  Blessings, Shannon :-)

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Ministry Minute and the Parenting Place--Alphabet Letter U

Happy Sunday, everyone!  Today's Bible verse alphabet letter was U and our verse was, "Unto you, O my strength, will I sing"  Psalm 59:17. 
We were visited by our puppet friend, Penny the Penguin.  Although Penny is a penguin, she isn't as good at singing as her other birdie friends.  We assured Penny that worshipping God isn't about singing with perfect pitch.  It's about praising Him for who He is and all He has done!

Penny talked to the children about how important it is to sing praises to God because He is worthy of our worship.  She also talked to them about how God can be our source of strength and power if we will place our faith in Him.  

In honor of today's verse, the children and I taught Penny a new praise song, "My God Is So Big!"  In case this song is new to you, you can hear a variation of it at the link below:

The words we sang are as follows: (of course, we also made up motions to go with the words) 
My God is so big, so strong and so mighty, 
There's nothing my God cannot do!
My God is so big, so strong and so mighty, 
There's nothing my God cannot do!
The mountains are His, the valleys are His, the stars are His handiwork too! 
My God is so big, so strong and so mighty, 
There's nothing my God cannot do--for you!

The children also colored today's U coloring page as shown here. 
Hope you have a wonderful week!  Blessings, Shannon :-)

Click Here for More from Me!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Times of Transition...

It is almost the end of the year--the time that brings a mix of sadness and jubilation to a teacher's heart!!!  So sad to see my kids go, but so thrilled to see summer come!

  This year also brings a bit of trepidation for me--I am moving classrooms.  Yes, I know that seems relatively silly to some, but my classroom is like my home away from home.  I have friends there, I have memories there, I have my "stuff" there.  I am moving to a new address in the school where the faces aren't quite as familiar...

Another glitch--cleaning out and moving forward.  Anyone else out there a teacher pack rat like me?  I realized Friday that I still had papers on my bookshelf that I left for my sub when I was out on maternity leave with my son Tate...Tate is now 8! ;-P  "But I might need those copies one day..."

I was feeling really bummed out about the additional work and stress of the move, but walking at Relay for Life last night really put things in perspective for me. 
I also heard these verses on the radio:  "If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing." 
1 Corinthians 13:1-3

So my goal this step outside of myself; to love and encourage the others around me; to move outside of my own circumstance and see the big picture; to love others with my words and actions.  There are probably about 20 of us moving in our building.  What can I do to encourage and help them?  That is my personal challenge for the week to come.
If it is any consolation to you, this is the mess that surrounds me now.  Look at this and think to yourself, "Wow, I am so much more organized than Shannon!"  I will keep you updated on the progress.  I am sure that in the midst of this mess lies an absolutely adorable room for next school year!  Hope this post encourages you if there are any transitions you are facing.  Sometimes I get so lost in the forest, I forget to see the trees!  Lots of love, Shannon :-) 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Gifted Gab and the Classroom Corner--the 8th Ancient Wonder???

Crazily enough, my kids learned this week that there is actually an 8th Ancient Wonder?!  Wondering why?  Well, it turns out that on the oldest lists, the Ishtar Gate of Babylon was named as an original wonder.  With the construction of the Lighthouse of Alexandria, however, the Ishtar Gate was replaced.
The Ishtar Gate was the 8th gate into Ancient Babylon.  For this week's extension activity my students used 8 octagons each to create imaginative dragons, creatures symbolic to residents of Ancient Babylon.  Students also wrote in their learning logs about the Ishtar Gate, made of beautiful lapiz lazuli.  We have absolutely loved this interactive and interdisciplinary unit on the 7 Wonders of the Ancient World!!!  Hope you have enjoyed traveling with us!!! 

Remember for more, you can find this unit on both Teachers Pay Teachers and Teacher's Notebook, and in honor of Mother's Day, it will be 20% off all week--YAY!!!!  :-)

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mother's Day!

How do I even begin to express my gratitude to my own mother?  As Mom and now Mimi, she has shown me what it means to act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with God...
And then my sister?  Her zest for life and her determination to accomplish whatever she sets her mind to remind me of the bravery and tenacity that go into being a wife and mother...
And what about my own husband and children?  Daily they remind me of God's grace, His love, His sacrifice, and His sense of humor...
I could go on and on.  From wonderful women who have mentored me to young ladies I have had the privilege of teaching...Motherhood is truly a circle.  It reminds me of the charge to women in Titus to teach each other how to love and live humbly and wisely.  Happy Mother's Day to each of you!  Whether a mother or daughter or both, thank you for all you do for those around you!!!!  God bless you and Happy Mother's Day!!!  Shannon :-)

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Ministry Minute and the Parenting Place--Bible Verse Alphabet Letter T

This week in children's church we learned a verse to correlate with the letter T.  Our verse this week was, "Thou shalt not steal" Exodus 20:15.
We were visited by our puppet dalmatian friend, Spot.  Spot was playing excitedly with a new toy car.  I asked Spot where the car came from, and he replied, "From Timmy."  When I asked Spot if Timmy had given the car to him, our puppy friend hung his head sheepishly.  See, it turns out that Spot had taken the car from Timmy's house without asking. :-(
The children and I shared our weekly Bible verse with Spot, and the girls and boys helped me to explain it to him.  Spot disappeared for a bit, and when he came back he was a much happier puppy.  Spot realized that it was wrong to steal, so he had apologized to Timmy and returned the car!
 Although I love our weekly alphabet verses, can I share with you what I love most about Children's Church? 

It is these sweet faces that I get to see every Sunday!  Blessings, Shannon :-)

Saturday, May 5, 2012

FREEBIES for you on the 5th! :-)

Hi!  Happy Cinco de Mayo!  Click the link below to take you to today's writing FREEBIE!  Hope you enjoy!
And how about a Mother's Day critical thinking FREEBIE as well?  Click the link below...

Also, just a note that in honor of Teachers' Appreciation I will have HUGE sales running at both my TpT and Teacher's Notebook stores for the next several days.  The links to both are included below. 

I would love for you to become a follower here on my blog and also on Facebook at!/BryantsBrainTrain.   Thanks so much for all of your encouragement and support!  Blessings, Shannon :-)

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Gifted Gab and the Classroom Corner--Who Doesn't Love a SALE???

Hola!  Just a reminder that my Cinco de Mayo resource pack mentioned in a previous post is available at both my TpT and Teacher's Notebook Stores. 

And just a few more "muy importante" tidbits to let you know about--

1)  EVERYTHING on my store will be on sale during the TpT Teacher Appreciation Sale on May 6-8!  I will be offering 20% off of EVERYTHING, which combined with the promo code of TAD12, will give you a whopping 28% off of all of my goodies!

2) Secondly, if you are not already a follower of my blog, I would love for you to follow me here at  I am also a contributor at  Check out this math page, as well as the writing page, for FREEBIES from me on the 5th and 15th of every month.

3) Lastly, I am excited to tell you that I am now on Facebook.  Look for the Bryant's Brain Train page and LIKE it to keep updated on my products and classroom news.!/BryantsBrainTrain

I feel so blessed to have all of you visiting me here!  I would love for you to tell your friends and colleagues about me!!!  I am excited about BIG PLANS already in the works for the summer and can't wait to share my new resources for both school and parents as the next school year unfolds!!! 

Blessings to you all!  Shannon :-)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Gifted Gab and the Classroom Corner--7 Wonders of the Ancient World, Number 7

Hi!  This week my students have travelled back in time to visit stop #7 on our 7 Wonders of the Ancient World tour.  This week we were off to see the Colossus of Rhodes.  Interestingly, many now debate whether this wonder actually existed or not. 

This huge statue was built of bronze and was reportedly destroyed by an earthquake.  Reports say it took 900 camels to remove the wreckage!  WOW!

After singing our 7 Wonders Song and discussing this wonder using our classroom Smartboard and 7 Wonders information pack, we were ready to make our own Colossus of Rhodes costumes.  We simply used paper plates, construction paper, and bulletin board paper. 
Upon the conclusion of our classroom research and related craftivities, students made a Knowledge Chart, recalling interesting facts learned along the way.  They also wrote about and illustrated the Colossus of Rhodes in their 7 Wonders Learning Logs.
See any similarities between this ancient statue and any statues we know here in America? 
That's right--the Statue of Liberty, carved by Bartholdi, was inspired in part by the Colossus of Rhodes.  This was a great learning extension as students connected the historical dots between these 2 monuments. 

Love Reading Rainbow?  There is a great united streaming clip available on the Statue of Liberty available at:

For more Colossus of Rhodes or 7 Wonders learning fun, my learning pack is available at both my TpT store and my Teacher's Notebook store.  Thanks so much for stopping by!  Shannon :-)