They are watching…

Teaching Thankfulness and Gratitude

Hey there…If you are a parent, grandparent or future parent, I am writing this blog post to you. This year, as the weather has turned colder and the leaves are falling, I’m reminded of a very important holiday that is just over a month away…Thanksgiving.

I love Thanksgiving! Many years ago, when my son was very young, I decided to start a holiday tradition. That tradition was to never start our Thanksgiving meal without first going around the table and having everyone tell what they are thankful for.

The first few years my son was okay with ‘Momma’s tradition’ but once he was in high school and we began inviting people that were not immediate family (sometimes his friends), he began a little eye rolling. I could just hear his non-spoken words, “Seriously, Mom, this is embarrassing!”

However, he is now a college graduate, married and expecting his first child and I can honestly say that in the last few years, I’ve seen a shift. Not only are his eyes no longer rolling but his answers are more profound and thoughtful.

Being thankful isn’t just a once a year thing in our home. Our lives haven’t always been easy. Just like every family we’ve had very happy times but we’ve also had some extremely tough times. Those painful times include being homeless after losing everything in Hurricane Katrina, living in less than ideal circumstances, depending on others for food and clothing and I could go on.

However, through it all, I had to make a conscious decision, often daily and sometimes even minute by minute, to choose thankfulness and gratitude.

My name is Lynda Ackert. I am a wife, a mother, a soon-to-be grandmother and the owner of My Teaching Library.

Today, my heart is to write to you about purposeful gratitude. As Thanksgiving approaches, my hope is that this reaches at least one momma (or daddy) that needs to be reminded that our children are always watching and learning from us and how we choose to live life.

Are we demonstrating a life of thankfulness and gratitude?

We can teach every subject (reading, writing, history, math, science…), using the best curriculum on the market, but that curriculum can’t teach our children the most valuable lessons of life. Life will teach these lessons and you are your children’s best teacher.

I do hope you’ll take a little space…right now to ask yourself, “What am I truly thankful for and how am I demonstrating my gratitude in front of my children?”

If anything I’ve written today has touched you in a positive way, please feel free to let me know. You can find me on My Teaching Library’s FB group or you can email me on my website’s contact form.

Typically when I write, I share about the educational products you can find on My Teaching Library but that wasn’t my purpose today. However, in the next couple weeks, I will be sharing some fun, Thanksgiving themed MTL products with you on my FB group. I’ll also be asking parents to share about their special family traditions, so I hope you’ll join me!

Many blessings to you,


The Birth of Jesus – The Christmas Story

The Christmas story can be found in both Matthew and Luke. It is the beautiful story of the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. My Teaching Library has created two copywork products (one using the KJV version, one using the NIV version) to help students learn the story and at the same time, practice valuable skills (keep reading to find out what these skills include).

If you aren’t interested in the actual copywork products and you simply want to read the story to your children, here it is (using the NIV version):

The Christmas Story
Luke 2:1-20
1 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world.
2 (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.)
3 And everyone went to their own town to register.
4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to
Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David.
5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.
6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born,
7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.
8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.
9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.
10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.
11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.
12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his
favor rests.”
15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”
16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger.
17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child,
18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them.
19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.
20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

You may be wondering what benefits can be found in having your children copy text such as this. Aside from helping them learn the story, you may be asking, Why put in the time and effort to simply copy what they are reading?”

Why copywork?
Copywork is copying a piece of well-written work, from any variety of sources, onto paper or into a notebook. The student copies from a written selection using his best penmanship to create a “perfect copy” that is properly spaced and includes all proper capitalization and punctuation marks. It is a method, that when used consistently, will improve your child’s penmanship, grammar, and punctuation skills as well as expose him to a variety of writing styles, structures, and techniques.

Do you prefer a NIV version of this resource? Christmas Story Copywork | NIV

Do you prefer a KJV version of this resource? If so: Christmas Story Copywork | KJV

If you’d like even more Bible copywork, check out…

My Teaching Library also has other copywork products as well! Here are a few to check out…


>> Learn more about My Teaching Library! <<


The Arctic Fox

The arctic fox is an incredibly hardy animal that can survive frigid Arctic temperatures as low as –58°F in the treeless lands where it makes its home.

It has furry soles, short ears, and a short muzzle—all-important adaptations to the chilly clime. Arctic foxes live in burrows, and in a blizzard they may tunnel into the snow to create shelter.

Common Name: Arctic Fox
Scientific Name: Vulpes lagopus
Type: Mammals
Diet: Omnivore
Group Name: Skulk, leash
Average life span in The Wild: 3 to 6 years
Size: Head and body: 18 to 26.75 inches; tail: up to 13.75 inches
Weight: 6.5 to 17 pounds

Click here to continue reading PLUS get FREE Arctic Fox pages to use with your students!!


Fun, Christmas Themed Writing Prompts

One great way to get students thinking and writing during the month of December is to give them some fun, Christmas themed writing prompts!

Here are 20 that will add some holiday fun into the school day:

  1. Personification means giving human traits, such as feelings and thoughts, to objects. Personify your Christmas tree. Write a story from the Christmas tree’s point of view.
  2. Pretend the president has passed a law banning Christmas. Write a letter to convince him that Christmas should not be banned.
  3. Pretend that you can choose one gift that will be given to every child in the world. What gift to you choose? Why?
  4. Write about the perfect Christmas Day. Include plenty of details.
  5. What does Santa want for Christmas? Make a Christmas list that includes whatever you think he might want. Tell why you think each item should be on the list.
  6. What do you think Santa’s elves do on their day off? Write a story about an elf that gets into some kind of trouble on his day off.
  7. How many Christmas gifts do you think a child your age should get? Why do you think so?
  8. Do you think it is better to be a kid or an adult at Christmastime? Tell why you think so.
  9. Pretend that you can get each person in your family any Christmas gift you want–even if it is very expensive or difficult to get. What would you give each person and why?
  10. You are in charge of planning Christmas dinner. Create a menu for your perfect Christmas meal.
  11. Pretend you are one of Santa’s elves. Write a journal entry about your day.
  12. Think about last Christmas. How was your life different then? How is it the same?
  13. Create a Top 10 list of your favorite Christmas activities. Your favorite should be #1.
  14. Pretend you have been given a baby reindeer to raise. Write about what you will do to take care of it. What challenges will you have to overcome?
  15. Write about your favorite Christmas book or movie.
  16. Who would you rather have as a friend: one of Santa’s elves or a snowman that magically came to life? Explain your choice.
  17. Finish this sentence in 10 different ways: This Christmas I hope…
  18. Create a new holiday tradition for your family. Write about what you would do and why it would be important.
  19. Write a story about “riding in a one-horse open sleigh.”
  20. Write about the best Christmas present you have ever received. Why was it so special?

Want to add even more holiday fun? Have students write their journal entries using this My Teaching Library product: Christmas Writing Paper


Give the Gift of Educational Resources

Times are tough and educational resources can be out of reach financially for many teachers and homeschooling families. That’s why My Teaching Library wants to make you aware of a way you can help…

You can purchase and give as a gift an annual Download Club subscription!


That’s it! Quick and simple…and yet you will make a huge difference in someone’s life by giving them a year of educational resources.

2nd Grade, 3rd Grade, Math, Roman Numerals, Uncategorized

Learning about Roman Numerals and a FREE worksheet!

Roman Numerals & How They Began

Historians believe Roman Numerals began as a tally system. Shepherds on the hills and in the fields around Rome would cut marks into sticks to keep track of how many sheep or goats were in their care.

Each animal was counted then recorded on a wooden stick with a single notch cut with a knife. Every fifth sheep was recorded on the stick with two notches which formed a V.  Each tenth sheep was recorded with two cuts to form an X. This method of record keeping was still being used by Italian shepherds during the Nineteenth Century!

How to Write Roman Numerals

I = 1
V = 5
X = 10
L = 50
C = 100
D = 500
M = 1000

The mnemonic ‘I Value Xylophones Like Cows Do Milk’ may really help you. If you’d like a poster and/or flash cards, you can get them on My Teaching Library…

How to Read & Write Roman Numerals – The Additive Property

The Additive Property – This rather ‘techo’ term simply means to ADD the value of each symbol to arrive at the final number .
e.g. LXXXIII = 50 + 10 + 10 +10 + 1 + 1 + 1 = 83

Roman Numeral Rules:
When writing roman numerals NEVER use more than 3 of any symbol.
– When smaller numerals are on the right hand side of bigger ones ADD them to the larger.
– Putting a numeral of lesser value before a numeral of greater value decreases the second numeral by the amount of the first. Thus IV equals four because V (five) is decreased by I (one).
– Putting a numeral of lesser value after a numeral of greater value increases the first numeral by the amount of the second. Thus VI equals six because V (five) is increased by I (one).

Fun Lapbook Project to learn Roman Numerals

Students will learn both the history and math of roman numerals as they create a lasting project. Students are given informational text (a brief history) of this numerical system as well as an explanation of the numbers and how they are used (counted – will require students to ‘identify’ given numbers – i.e. CDLX). Students will also learn how roman numerals are used now in every day life.


  • – Explanation and instructions for creating a lapbook
  • – Informational text
  • – Map of Ancient Roman Empire
  • – Lapbooking templates

My Teaching Library is also offering a FREE worksheet to get students working with Roman Numerals 1 to 99. This FREE Roman Numerals Worksheet has been taken from MTL’s Roman Numerals 1 to 99 and Thanksgiving Mazes product. It will give your students practice converting Roman numerals to numbers (1 to 99). There are 12 problems and a fun cornucopia maze. Answer Key included!

Get your instant free Roman Numerals Worksheet here!

If you LOVE to get freebies, My Teaching Library offers several plus if you sign up for the MTL newsletter, you’ll get at least one free resource in every email!

To see all of the available website freebies, click here!

To instantly signup for the MTL newsletter, get at least one freebie in every email and get a BONUS freebie just for signing up, click here!

October, Product Suggestions, Uncategorized

Mid-October Activities and Lessons

Isn’t it amazing just how fast time goes by?! It is hard to believe it is mid October already! I live in Colorado and just last night we had a huge cold front move in from the north. Needless to stay, there was a lot of wind and I have leaves everywhere!

This made me think how much I used to love doing leaf activities with my son when he was younger. So…today I want to share a few you can find on My Teaching Library!

Shape Book – Maple Leaf
Students love to create and this resource, Shape Book – Maple Leaf, will give them a fun template to create! Whether they are publishing a story, a poem or a brief report about Autumn (Fall), their work will be extra special to them using these Maple Leaf templates.

Autumn Art | Leaf Mobile
Create a colorful autumn leaf mobile with the included leaf templates!

Autumn Art | Leaf Relief
Here is a quick art project for the Fall! Students will have fun creating a lasting leaf relief that they can keep for years to come.

My Teaching Library has a lot of other fun activities that would be perfect for this time of year! Here are 3 of the many available…

October: Color the Picture & Write a Story
This resources has 20 different October / Fall-themed scenes, students can color the picture on each and then write a story that goes along with the picture.

My Pumpkin Lapbook
This interactive unit for students will allow them to create a cute LAPBOOK about PUMPKINS! Great to use anytime, especially in October or November during the Fall Holidays.In the resource you’ll find vocabulary, vocabulary cards, life cycle, parts of a pumpkin, pumpkin book templates to answer questions such as “Native American uses for pumpkin”, “Nutritional value of pumpkins” and more. Also included: Explanation / Instructions for lapbooking.


Because mid-October often has people thinking about creepy crawly things (like spiders…ewww), I’ve just created a resource for learning the life cycle of a spider…

Spider Life Cycle | Poster and Activities
Want to study the life cycle of a spider? Here is a resource for you!
This resource Includes:
– 2 labeled posters (color and b/w) – life cycle coloring page
– colorful center activity
– 2 cut-n-paste worksheets

I’ve also just added a new, fun Fall writing activity…

Fall Chaos | Creative Writing Activity
FUN Fall writing activity. Use as a lesson assignment or in a writing center. Using this resource, students will roll one die 4 times and use the chart to help determine the character, setting, weather and conflict that should be in their story. Then, they will plan out their story on given pages:
– Character Planner
– Setting Planner
– Story Planner

After all planning is complete, they will write their stories!

Thank you for reading and allowing My Teaching Library to be a part of your teaching journey. If you know someone else that teaches, please tell them about MTL!

Lapbooking, notebooking, Uncategorized

The Process of Electing our Leaders | U.S. Elections

It’s important that students learn about every aspect of the election process.

Your students want to learn and they love when given a chance to take charge of their learning! That is why My Teaching Library offers this U.S. Elections themed resource that will give them the opportunities they need to take charge, make decisions, collaborate and learn…all while creating a wonderful project!

This resource will give the students the opportunity to learn about different aspects of U.S. elections (both local and national elections) and at the same time give them choices as to what they want (or need) to focus on.

It will also give them the opportunity to choose how they want to work (alone or in a group) and how they present their findingsm using either a notebooking method or creating a lapbook. Of course, if you as the teacher, want (or need) to assign specifics and give them less control, you can do that as well. This resource is flexible!

Several informational text pages have been provided but students should be encouraged to read books and find other resources to gather information. Perhaps they can watch an upcoming televised debate. Perhaps they can attend a townhall meeting or interview someone.


  • Teacher pages for instructions, explanations and evaluations and more
  • Sample questions to get students ‘thinking’
  • Over 100 pages for students to select from when designing their projects! (These student pages have been created ‘in color’ but can easily be printed in b/w or grayscale to save $$$).

(Please note: If you are a MTL Download Club subscribing member, this resource is FREE!)