Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Guest Blog Hop: Reading Workshop Tips

Happy Wednesday everyone!  I can't believe it's only my third week of school!  Is that possible?

I incredibly excited to guest blog with a fabulous 2nd grade teacher, Marcy over @ Saddle Up for Second! It's so fun to collaborate with a fellow 2nd grade teacher!  She has some wonderful resources to check out if you haven't already done so.

So...click below to HOP to Marcy's blog and check out my post about getting Reading Workshop up and running!  :)

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

#2getherwearebetter--Classroom Reveal

A little late to the party, but I'm here!  It's time for a little CLASSROOM REVEAL!  I love looking at other people's classrooms and being able to see all the creative touches they put in their room to make it a positive, warm, and inspiring learning environment for their kiddos.

I'm linking up with the lovely Mrs. Angie Olson (@LuckyLittleLearners) and Ashley Schroeder  (@SchroederShenanigansinSecond).  Don't forget to stop over there and check out all the other wonderful bloggers who are sharing their classroom reveals as well.
Here's a view of my room before.  Does anyone else have the experience of having it be really messy before it gets back to normal?  :)
Chalk It Up Double Polka Dot Border from Creative Teaching Press & Burlap from A.C. Moore
Wood Frames from A.C. Moore  (painted in chalkboard black)
Black Schedule pocket chart from Carson Dellosa
September Calendar header from my TPT Calendar All Year 
More Days Until Poster FREEBIE from my TPT store
 CAFE and Writing Sign--working on putting up all the files in my TPT store--Chalkboard/Burlap Theme
Black Pocket Chart--Carson Dellosa
Hundred Chart--Becker's Teacher Store  (no longer available)
Black Daisy & White Daisy from School Girl Style
Birthdays, Math & Reading Banners, Vocab, 100 Charts & Other Labels -- Will put in my Chalkboard/Burlap File on TPT
 Chalkboard jars & LOVE wooden letter--Target 
Supply Containers--Container Store
 Woven Baskets for Clipboards--A.C. Moore (college section)
Snack/Milk Helpers & Homework Numbers--Working on putting in my store ;)
Circular Student Name Tags-FREEBIE in my store 
Bookcase from Really Good Stuff (sorry for the blurry pic)
 Wooden Quote Frames--Target Dollar Section
Scrapbook Paper-A.C. Moore
Large Letters--Credit to Ashley from Schroder Shenanigans (see post about it here)
Chalk It Up Double Polka Dot Border from Creative Teaching Press 
 Raskog Utility Gray IKEA cart 
Classroom Jobs from My TPT store 
 Sorry again for the blurry picture!  I will take some new ones and repost.
Charming Dots Chalkboard Incentive Charts from Creative Teaching Press
The little mini posters below I got from my teaching partner so I'll have to ask her about those and get back to you.  :)
What Stuck With You Today? poster idea from Education to the Core 
I didn't download her free file on TPT for her letters, but you can see the original picture and the link above.  Such a great idea!
 I'm so excited to have the kiddos reflect on a new quote each month.  I'm so curious how they will interpret each one.  I'll share their ideas once school is up and running!  :)
 Listening Center from Lakeshore
 CAFE letters--will put up in my store
 Writing Banner--will put up in my store
Pencil clipart from 3AM Teacher and Border on Pencil from Creative Clips from Krista Walden 
That's all for now!  I'm still in preparing mode, but will post a video and more pictures (not as blurry) later this week.  

Thanks for stopping by!!  


Sunday, August 30, 2015

It's a Sunday Scoop!

It's time to link up with the lovely ladies over at The Teaching Trio for their weekly Sunday Scoop again!  It's been a bit since I have, but since it is the NIGHT before we go back to school (just for meetings) I thought it would be good to share a few things.
Have To:  I need to finish up our little postcards to students and finish reading our summer book!  I'm a little behind, but hopefully I can catch up!  We're reading The Road to Character by David Brooks.  You can watch his Ted Talk above if you're interested.  I think a lot of what I've found in this book can also be found in the teachers that I have encountered.  They are phenomenal people who instill a love of learning, but also a love for others and themselves.
Hope To:  Thanks to a friend of mine I've started a new exercise routine and tried out a bunch of healthy recipes!  I'm excited to start the year off on the right foot!  Now here's to fighting the temptations of the those sweet kiddos coming by with fancy cupcakes and donuts!  Ah the joys of teaching!  
I'm in the midst of finishing my classroom and will post some pics during the #2getherwearebetter post with @LuckyLittleLearners and @SchroederShenangians's Classroom Reveal Post on Wednesday!  
Speaking of Angie Olson over at Lucky Little Learners, I just discovered her interactive notebooks this summer!  I was trying them out myself and am hoping to share with my colleagues this week.  I think it will add some great pieces to our Math Units!  Thanks Angie!
I think the pic below is self explanatory!  ;)  
Happy To:  This is an important one.  I love Facetiming with my niece and it speaks to the bigger picture which is remaining balanced throughout the year.  Focusing on taking care of ourselves as teachers despite the constant streams of demands.  It makes our jobs incredibly interesting and dynamic and one that I'm so incredibly grateful for, but we can (o.k., I) can be swept up in it all!  Maybe it's just me right?  :)
Here's to a balanced, happy, positive school year!  

Sunday, August 9, 2015

A little Sunday Scoop linkup

Linking up with the gang at the Teaching Trio for their...
3 Things...
I've been doing my best to stay consistent with blogging, TpT, etc.  I think the best thing about it all is  the benefit that I gain from collaborating with others and sharing tips back and forth.  I'm looking forward to another school at the end of the month, but I'm also super excited to have connected with so many new teaching blog friends.  

A few that are new to me and have been awesome to learn from: 
--great, practical tips!
Lucky Little Learners
--love that she is a 2nd grade teacher, so encouraging, and hosts great Periscopes
Schroeder Shenanigans In 2nd
--Mrs. Olson's blogging buddy--they both host awesome linky parties and do such a great job collaborating with others!  Love her!

There are lots more, but these are a few I cam across recently that I was unfamiliar with.  
Recently I've been working hard updating my products on TpT and doing my best to make them fresh.  This one below is one that I have tweaked and updated.  I have made sure to create a more clear, concise running record form and added lots more options for Reading Notebook covers below that are EDITABLE.  ;)  Click the pictures below for the link. 
Lastly, 2 things and 1 thing both focus on spending time with family and continuing to take care of myself.  As the summer slowly (or should I say a little too quickly!) winds down, I am enjoying as much time as I can with family and friends.  
Hope you all are doing the same!  
All the best!

Sunday, August 2, 2015

#2getherwearebetter--My Top 10 Bulletin Board Tips &Tricks

I'm so excited to join Ashley from Schroeder Shenanigans and Angie from Lucky Little Learners for a Bulletin Board linky!  
School does not start until September for me, so in terms of putting up bulletin boards it is a bit early for me.  I thought that instead I would talk about some tips and tricks I've picked up along the way.  I'm always learning and trying new things, but there's a lot of great ideas out there already.  All photos are either my own or photo credit with links are indicated.  

Tip #1:  
Make it a priority to build CLASSROOM COMMUNITY with your bulletin boards.  This means the kiddos should see pictures of themselves around the room.  Hope King from Elementary Shenanigans hosted a great Periscope about her top 10 Set Up suggestions here.  

My favorite board to make is our hallway bulletin board.  *I can't show the fullness of these ideas, because it shows student's faces, but you can see a few samples below featuring some of my FAVORITE teacher pals!  :)  
We start the year with a question that we want the students to answer and that hopefully builds community.  
Questions we've used in the past:  Why do you love our school?  (one of core values is love)  What makes you smile?  What is your favorite thing to do at school?  

I use Krista Walden's speech bubbles to attach above their picture to display each student's answer on the Bulletin Board.  

Tip #2:  
Don't be afraid to change the shape of your boards by redefining the space with borders.  Split one board into two using borders or create sections using pocket charts.  You can also use clips so you can attach any anchor charts to your boards.   

Tip #3:  
Use spaces that some would consider UNCONVENTIONAL.  
Photo Credit:  Tales of a Teacherista & Boulder Journey School (Fairy Dust Teaching)
Your filing cabinet

The heater

The side of your student's lockers or cubbies

The closet doors

Cabinet Doors

Above the door

The ceiling

SKY'S the LIMIT!  

Tip #4:  

Staples, Stapler Removers, and Exacto Knives....OH my!  
Make friends with your exacto knife and get a decent staple remover.  

Tip #5

Glue guns are your friend!  (If you are allowed to use them at your school).  The glue peels off pretty easily.  
And if you truly need a break, you could do this!  :)  Just kidding!  Always room for an Office joke!
Tip #6:  
Use colors that are calming and consistent and most importantly is a space you and your students enjoy!  :)  

Tip #7:  
Don't be afraid to branch out and use materials that are also not your typical bulletin board materials. Shall we highlight the tissue paper, double border, burlap, fabric materials that are sweeping the BBoard nation?  #creativeteachers 

Tip #8:  
Don't worry about the boards looking perfect!  :)  Who cares if that piece is hanging out or it got a little ripped in the corner.  Time with family and friends is way more important than another hour with the stapler.  :) 

Tip #9:  
Student Participation!  

If students can add to your charts and bulletin boards then they will have ownership.  Don't be afraid to let them write strategies you are working on and definitely show their work as much as you can. 
Tip #10:
Ask colleagues for feedback when designing your boards.  It's always fun to see what others can add to your idea.  Don't "go it alone"!   

I'm sure there are a million more tips, but those are some I have learned along the way.  Love to hear more in the comments!  

I'll come back and update you on my bulletin boards for this coming year.  I'm excited to do something with this idea I saw on Pinterest for our 2nd grade collaborative community board this year.  Stay tuned!  
Photo Credit:  Jendrawthelineat & Marci Coombs