Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Wordless Wednesday



I'm linking up with Miss DeCarbo at Sugar and Spice for Wordless Wednesday. 


 Have you seen this ecard ever? 
Damn right, I don't! PJ's, fuzzy blankies, and a heating pad! C'mon 7 o'clock! :) Woot!


Well this was me today when I got home from the first staff day of the year!

My first day fashion consisted of dark tan capris and a pretty black and cream scroll top (all from Kohl's).  I needed something that was comfortable for sitting in a staff meeting, and not so dressy that I couldn't spend time unpacking and putting up posters and such.

BUT the second I walked in the door it was time for my PJs!  Which consist of Yoga Pants and a huge t-shirt.  I think I changed into PJs before I even said hello to hubs!

How long does it take you to change
into your pajamas?


Monday, August 25, 2014

Monday Made-It - Last one before school starts up!

OK this week was another not very crafty week.  Again - many projects in the works, but not so many completed. However there were a few so I'm linking up with 4th Grade Frolics for Monday Made-It

 A dear friend of mine had her baby shower this weekend so I made her a lovely card!


I'm really bad at taking pictures while I make things - and the pinspiration was just a picture so I made up some diagrams for you!






But here's a funny story about this card! Have you seen this e-card floating around?
Aka school is starting again...time to know what day of the week it is
Well apparently I'm not there yet - cuz I showed up for the baby shower 24 hours late!


Ok I admit I did another redesign of my blog.  I like design #2 better than #1 because #2 reflected the title more.  But it felt gray and dreary.  So at the BTS boost sale I picked up some digital papers and went to work trying to make it reflect and be pleasing to look at!


I love it! Especially my signature - thank goodness for Google - you can find instructions to do anything!



The last made it is not technically something I made.  Rather I MADE the plunge and purchased an Erin Condren Life Planner:



Holy smokes I can't wait for this thing to get here!



 photo Signature_zps73d808b4.png

Friday, August 22, 2014

Blog Hoppin' Teacher Week - Friday

Today's final Blog Hoppin' Link Up is all about what I like to teach!



This post is going to be very short! I love to teach Reading and Writing especially!  And small group instruction is my favorite!  

For reading I like to use books from Reading A-Z for leveled readers.  I also will sometimes pull books from our reading department's Leveled Literacy Intervention cabinets - but I prefer Reading A-Z because they can keep those books!  And I just collect books for read-alouds.  When I finished my first student teaching placement my cooperating teacher gave me a huge canvas bag and the kids all donated books to it for me!  Since then I've just continued to collect!  Here is my classroom library from graduate school (2008) to now!

For writing my students need a lot of encouragement - writing is the hardest skill for them to learn!  I like to do sticker stories to make writing fun!  Even my 'big' kids (3-5th) like doing sticker stories! I also like to find creative quick writing prompts  I picked up these September daily quick writes, and if they go well this coming month I think I may be going back for more!

WRITING - September Quick Writes
Find it here

I also have a huge file of various journal topics that I have collected over the years.  To work on editing, word choice and grammar I love Drops in the Bucket!  I am slowly collecting them all for ELA but right now I have levels B&C with A&D on the way! They have sample pages for each level on their website.

Find it here (they have math too!)

And that's that folks - head on over to Blog Hoppin' to see what everyone else loves to teach!





Thursday, August 21, 2014

Blog Hoppin' Teacher Week - Thursday

Today's Blog Hoppin' Link Up is all about when I do things - a look into my day.



Honestly I can't give you a look into my day, because I won't have a schedule until the first week of school.  Scheduling this year will be a nightmare!  I have at least one student at each grade level K-6, K-4 all have their ELA blocks in the AM, and grade 6 has a rotating schedule!  Every year I think it can't get harder to make up a schedule - but somehow I'm always wrong!  Then I have to schedule in my 30 minute lunch and 40 minute plan time - all between 8:35 and 2:25.  So needless to say - I don't have a daily schedule yet.


However I did spend a lot of time this summer doing curriculum work and I have a yearly plan for Kindergarten!

Each week has a vocabulary topic (or a state test - bleh!)  We did our best to schedule the units in a way that made the most sense... Fall, Winter, Spring and Summer are schedule for the weeks when each season starts (or as close as possible).  Easier units (colors, numbers and shapes) are scheduled at the beginning so that the focus can be on learning the routines.  Then we grouped units so connected ones were taught in connection!

Next we have a unit plan (weekly plan) for Kindergarten:


We use the Thoughtful Classroom framework to plan our units - the week moves through in pretty much this order.  The blue boxes highlight the parts that we do each week, the L, S, R, W are there to note that we have activities for all 4 language modalities (Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing).  At the bottom you see my Vocabulary Self-Assessment Worksheets (Free in my TPT store) - We will use these at the beginning and end of each unit.  You also see my Picture Dictionary (also available in my TPT store) - Each Friday the students will glue pictures of their vocabulary words from the week into their dictionary.  I have already typed the words in for them.

Next we have a look at Kindergarten for the day!

I always start with a circle (a very abbreviated Morning Meeting) usually we will greet each other with a hand shake or high five, then ask "How are you feeling today?" ______ "Why are you feeling ______ today?" ______.  The students take turns each day leading in a recitation of the weeks sight words and vocabulary.  I will then read and display the "I can" statements (they love these and if I don't have them they ask for them).  We will move through our content (from the weekly plan).  Then we will check to see if we could and did do the things in the "I can" statements. Then off they go!  (My "I Can" Posters are available on TPT as well - and FREE!)

First grade will be very similar this year, but for 2-6 all bets are off!  It will depend a lot on the schedule I come up with.

Don't forget to head over to Blog Hoppin' to check out what everyone else has to share!


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Blog Hoppin' Teacher Week - Wednesday

Today's Blog Hoppin' link up is all about why my organizational system works.  This was a tough one because I'm not an overly organized person - everything does not match and I have a mash-up of systems!  But it works for me - so that's all that matters I suppose!

Some times I do binders - I have a binder for my kindergarten alphabet activities, a binder for my sight words (for k and 1) and a binder for the road to reading I sometimes use with 1st.  These are things that I print ahead of time and have ready to go for the year! I also have a binder for NYSESLAT (state test) materials, reading a-z lesson plans, and some of the curriculum books I've taken apart over the years.  

Organized by letter
Back to school Alphabet Worksheets
Alphabet Bracelets
ABC Sort With Me
Organized by Monthly Use
Sight Words Cut & Paste Bundle
Sight Word Phrases for Homework
Simple Sentences the Bundle

Then I have my K and First Unit Folders (expanding files from target dollar bin - I have tons of them)  These are loosely organized inside.  They will go into my crate seats.  I should only need one or two out at a time.  I will also use these to organize materials for various reading strategies.
As I take out the unit folders I can make the copies needed and put them in these hanging pocket organizers.  Eventually there will be one pocket for each group - I set them up for the photo op.  My plan is to have each week's materials pulled, printed and ready to go before I leave school the Friday before.


Then I have my shelves with my centers.  Most of these are from Have Fun Teaching.  They are arranged left to right, top to bottom from easiest (Alphabet Recognition) to hardest (rhyming) with CVC and short vowels in the middle.  I still have a lot of these to cut out!  I store them in ziploc bags


On top I put my white boards and clip boards.  The fabric bin is from Kohl's from years ago.   The little blue bucket holding the markers is also from the target dollar bin (a magical place)

And that is my Smorgasbord of organizational strategies!

Be sure to head to Blog Hoppin' to check out everyone else's organization!


Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Blog Hoppin' Teacher Week - Tuesday

Today's Blog Hoppin' link up is all about where I teach.  As in show off your class space (I don't have a room - I have a space)




I share my room with the three reading teachers - we each have a corner (easier said than done as it isn't a rectangular room!)  It will be nice to have friends nearby - but I am concerned about the NOISE!  4 teaching at once could be a trick!

 My desk and table from reading teacher #1's side of the room! (Please ignore the garbage can I just got boxes back from the print shop) You'll notice I have no chairs - that is because crate seats are in the works!  They'll look awesome and be a practical way to get some more storage in my room!

 My rocking chair, carpet and bulletin board from reading teacher #1's side of the room!  I've had the rocking chair since I was young and my mother made the pillows! (thanks mom!)

I just moved from a room about twice as big with a 2nd cabinet!  The students will label the drawers, luckily I don't have too many files!

When we moved in in May the custodians were also moving many others so my white board won't go up until school starts up again.  I don't want to put anything else up until that is up so I know how much space I have.

Labeling my library is on my permanent to-do list.

The long walk from my space to the rest of the kiddos! (We're so far away!)



I can't wait to see what everyone else has to show off! (I will probably be jealous)

Monday, August 18, 2014

Monday Made - it

 I only have 2 things to show for 4th Grade Frolics' Monday Made It - Many projects in the works though!

My in-laws are getting ready to move to Arizona so my Mother-in-law asked me to make some scarves for her office employees and coworkers. I love sewing scarves because it is all straight lines!



I finished up my Picture Dictionaries and Dictionaries for this year, and was able to load them on TPT.  For my kindergarten kiddos the words are already typed in.  They will just need to glue in the pictures.  For first grade they will write the word (ruled lines) and then glue in the picture.



My 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders will put words they pull from text on the alphabet list, then use the graphic organizer to identify the word, it's part of speech, the definition, a sentence, and a picture.  I am glad I will have a system for keeping all the words in one place this year!


You can find both of these items in my Teachers Pay Teachers shop.

And that's it, that's all I've got for this week.  Like I said many big projects in the works, so hopefully some new projects next week!