Thursday, October 4, 2012

I've been gone HOW LONG?

Holy Cow, I can't believe it has been over a MONTH since I posted! Craziness! I have a good reason though, I PROMISE!  Are ya ready?


I found out the day of Open about not focused!  I was really excited/scared at first, and then REALLY TIRED!  Seriously.  I have been going to bed usually around 7:30, to fall asleep around 8.  Sometimes it's even as early as 6!  And sick? Oh yea!  I'm getting better now as I am finishing up my 1st trimester this week, but boy it was BAD!

So anyways, that is where I have been!  And I really don't know that I will be posting much anytime soon, because I still like to sleep!  But I at least wanted you let you know I didn't fall off the face of the earth :)

My principal decided that we are switching classes across the grade-level this year.  We have our homerooms assigned to us, and then each child got their own schedule.  It's kinda crazy.  And VERY hectic.  One of my teammates is still stressing out about it, but only because she has 3 Social Studies classes to teach, and only 30 minutes for each class.  BLAH.  Add to that, 28-30 kids in a class....pretty much forget the days of fun social studies :(  But we are adjusting.  I'll keep ya updated periodically throughout the year on how it is going, in case you want to pitch the idea to your principal for next year ;-)

Thursday, August 30, 2012

The Quietest Pencil Sharpener EVER!!!

Hey gang! I want to take this time to write a quick review for The Quietest Pencil Sharpener EVER!

 Groovy Green

 I had seen some teachers post about these sharpeners, and have to admit, I was a little skeptical.  This is because I went thru FIVE pencil sharpeners last year! I don't know what those students did, but they broke every. single. one.

So when I heard about this awesome sharpener, I thought to myself YEA RIGHT.  But alas, I broke down and gave it a try.  I received it in the mail, and immediately got it out to try.  I followed the instructions on the video on their website, and it truly worked! (Click HERE to access video) It was quiet, AND I had never seen a pencil so sharp!  But I still needed this to pass the kid test....and boy did it! I took them a while to grasp HOW it works...they wanted to just turn the handle and hold the pencil, like you do the wall sharpeners.  Now that they have though, they LOVE it! They are always amazed at how sharp the point it! I catch them talking about that a lot more than you would think :)

In the meantime, I WON another pencil sharpener from Elizabeth at Fun in Room 4B.  So now, if my kids decide to break use my sharpener until it is on its death bed, I will have a replacement! 

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Classroom Reveal

Well, it's the third day with the kids.  I have some sweetie pies....29 in each class! Let's just say, it gets loud quick, and that can get on my nerves :(  But did I mention they are sweet? So that helps them out! But yesterday I was EXHAUSTED...I didn't even get to finish watching Jeopardy! I was in the bed by 8, and out like a light by 8:30.  My hubs said he had to wake me up because when he came to bed, I was sprawled out on his side! I don't even remember that, so you KNOW I was tired!!

Anyways, sorry it took me so long to do my classroom reveal.  Last week was HECTIC trying to figure out everyone's schedule.  We have 5 groups of 4th grade, and they are going ALL OVER THE PLACE! I have a homeroom class, and then at 8:15 they disperse to their assigned classes.  Kind of like middle school....

So here is my room.  I am going to apologize ahead of time for the quality of pictures.  I used instagram on my phone.


This is outside of my door. Students will sign the posters when they master that particular lesson of Multiplication in 7 days. I got the signs from Teaching 4 Real. 

Door...self explanatory.  I got the banner from Clutter Free Classroom, and I used my Cricut to cut out the letters for my sign :)


View from Front Door


My Area


Computers, with my crate seats.  I have to figure out something to put on that wall. It is driving me nuts!


My table that I covered in contact paper (Thanks Kristen!), and up top will be where I put my I Can 
statements that we have mastered! I purchased them from Terri Thorton at The Creative Apple!


My pride and window/reading area turned out EXACTLY how I had imagined it!  You can read about the bunting in a previous post...but shout out to my Mother in Law for helping me make it!


Bookshelf that hubby made for me! I just numbered the book baskets, because I don't teach reading, so I just put in books that the kids love to read! 


Math corner.  I have my manipulatives and games stored here.  


My whiteboard that I don't use, so it has my HW, which resource we have that day (labels from kristen), behavior chart I got last year from Teaching in Flip Flops, my calendar and the months I made, and my how we go home.  Since we are switching classes, I don't necessarily have my home room at the end of the day, so I haven't quite figured out how I will use that yet.  We shall see. 


My Boggle Math board (I found this on 4th Grade Frolics website, but I know she got it from somewhere else.  Just can't remember who right now!)  And the black one will be where my Math Vocab will go! It will be separated by domain.  I got that from Terri Thornton as well. Oh, and don't mind the emptiness of this bookcase.  I have housed their Social Studies books there now.  


Front of the room!  My rules are hanging up, and my hall pass sign! You can see my Math Alphabet up there also!  The front bulletin board will house the I Can statements we are working on, and then I will move them to the back when we are finished. 

Well there you have it!  That is a full circle of my room! I am VERY PROUD of how this turned out!  Almost every teacher in the school has come by to look at it!  Even teachers from other schools have said they have heard about just makes my heart flutter :) But I must say, I couldn't have done it without you guys and pinterest!   

Sunday, August 19, 2012

It's over....

Well, tomorrow starts my School Year, which means the end of summer :(  I guess technically WEDNESDAY starts my School Year, as tomorrow and Tuesday are optional days, but really? Open House is would I get everything complete WITH a half day meeting on Wednesday, if I didn't go Monday and Tuesday?  I would LOVE to know who wrote this calendar right about now ;-) room is almost complete.  Just a few finishing touches, and I will be ready to reveal to bloggy land! I can't wait! I LOVE the way it has turned out so far!

Good luck to those of you already with your kiddos, and to those who start back this week like me! The rest of y'all still on summer break...well you know what you can do ;-) J/K!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Monday Made It

Hey gang! I'm FINALLY linking up with Tara from 4th Grade Frolics for Monday Made It! I have been wanting to post some of this for a couple of weeks, but with family in town, I've just been too busy! So this is going to be a LONG post :)   Please bare with me...


1- I finally got around to printing out my practical items!  So after cutting, some gluing, laminating, and cutting yet again, here it is!! 

I have my months, welcome banner, how to get home cards, multiplication in 7 days cards (SEE HERE), rules, and bright special signs!

2- No Name Sign...A lot of you have made this, so it's self explanatory :)

3- I saw on someone's blog (sorry, I forgot who!...I'm bad at that.  Let me know and I'll link it up!)  for a container to hold earphones.  I HAD to make one :)  My school has earphones in the labs, but a lot are broken, AND they are the type that go over the head.  Last year, I had 2 students who had A LOT of lice cases...needless to say, I don't think that's very sanitary to share things that go on your head!  It's also not for ears either probably, so I got the idea of getting each of my students their own earbuds! They are $1 at Dollar Tree, so I won't be out of a ton of money.  Each student will have their own pair, and I can sanitize at the end of the year, OR they can take them home and I will just get new ones each year.  If something happens to a pair, I'm only out a dollar.  

4- Math Alphabet- From Little Lovely Learners

Anyways, she made a Math Alphabet.  Each of the letters has a corresponding picture that is math related! And since I am only teaching math this year (HALLELUJAH!) I figured this was PERFECT!  I almost got Kristen's flipped alphabet, because it is super cute, but I had to go with the Math! So Kristen, if you decide to flip these, I will be your first customer :)

 5- Remember that bookshelf/bench I have been talking about? Well...I found something at Target that I just knew would work! It totally didn't.  I was sitting in the floor of my classroom having a break down, and my husband told me he could make one.  I didn't believe him.  Sad, isn't it?  Let's just say, I have a memory of arguing over putting up shelves and pictures wrong, so I was a lot a little concerned with building a bookcase from scratch.  But, I didn't really have a choice, did I? 
TA DA! He did good didn't he? :)  So then, I had him cut a piece of plywood the same length as the top, I cut a mattress pad for the foam, and covered it with fabric! You will see the finished product in just a bit.

THEN...I got my mother-in-law to help me with a pennant string for my window.  I got the inspiration from Peace, Love, 2 Sisters.  I wish I would've taken pictures of the process, but we followed her instructions, so you can just check hers out!  The only thing we did different was, instead of the wonder under, we used interfacing.  Saved us a step of sewing the triangles together...we could just iron them on.  We cut 96 triangles, 96 interfacing triangles, ironed, and then sewed them to the bias tape.  It took us pretty much ALL day, but it is worth it!
See the bench?  I had enough pennant to do my windows, go across my white board, and across a little open cabinet in my room.  Better to have too many, than not enough :) 

So that's my Monday Made It!  One is just a sneak peak of my classroom.  I am going back tomorrow to work some more, and then I am staying away until I have to be there next Monday.  Most of it is done, I just have to do some finishing touches, but I probably won't do my reveal until next week.  I need some bigger things laminated, so that will have to work until we go back for real.  

Hope you enjoyed! Go check out everyone else's Monday Made Its!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Big Give-away, just in time for A SALE!

Tonya over at Treats for Teachers, is having a Flash Give-away for a $25.00 gift certificate to Teachers Pay Teachers! This is just in time for their 10% off sale happening tomorrow and Monday, and most sellers are also offering 20% on top of that! Somehow though, 10%+20%=28%...haven't quite figured that out yet, but I'll take it!  Be sure to stop by and check her out!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

What's Your Style Linky!

Hey guys! I am linking up with From Blood to Books! for her What's Your Style? Linky Party! I LOVE to shop, and this makes me so excited! However, I am trying to hold off until I lose a ton couple of pounds ;-) We shall see how long that holds up! HA!


Here are the guidelines...
1. Tell me your favorite store(s) that you like to get your "teacher's fashion".
2. What are some of your favorite accessories?
3. What type of shoes do you teach in? (i.e. heels, flats, wedges, etc.)
4. Do you have a "go-to" item in your closet? (i.e. sweater you wear weekly, shoes you wear daily, etc.)
5. Have you ever had a fashion "uh-oh" at school? (i.e. heel broke, button popped off of blouse)
Please feel free to post any cute items, sales, outfits that you have grabbed for this upcoming school year!
1.  Favorite Store
     Well, this kinda depends on what I am buying.  I LOVE Old Navy, but I hate their blue jeans.  So I buy my jeans at GAP.  I don't know what it is, but the Long and Lean jeans from there are the only jeans that look good on me.  But I do get a lot of my tops, cardigans, and dresses from Old Navy.  I also love Ann Taylor Outlet, and The Loft Outlet!  The fact that they give teachers a percentage off just makes it a plus in my book :)  Lastly, I like Belk and Cato, because they are the only two stores that are local, so sometimes I have NO CHOICE but to shop there ;-) Hey, a girl has to do, what a girl has to do!

2. Favorite Accessories  
    The only accessories that I wear non-stop are my engagement ring and wedding ring.  I always have a pair of earrings in, but they can be dangly (yes, that is a word!), to just studs.  I like all kinds...except those feather ones.  I don't get it.  I have some bracelets that I wear, but lately I have gotten into long necklaces! They can make an outfit!

3. Shoes
    I am 5'9", so I hardly ever wear heels.  I do like to wear wedges, but my feet hurt in those after a while.  I usually kick them off near the end of the day and just go bare-footed.  So the bulk of my shoes are flats.  One thing I LOVE about my school, is that I can wear my rainbows :)  You will see me in those about 90% of the time! I have 4 different colors too, so they always match ;-)    

4. Go-to item
    Easy- cardigan.  I have a ton of cardigans, ranging in colors and style.  Every morning, I walk out of the house in a cardigan.  My room is FREEZING, so they keep me warm, and I can throw them off to go out for recess and car riders.  They also make some of my dresses and tops look better and more complete :)

5.  Fashion uh-oh moment
     A couple of years ago, I was going thru a lot.  I had just gotten married, my dad died, end of grade tests were coming up...Stressful times.  I showed up to school one day, and walking down the hall to my class, realized I had on two different flip flops.  I live 30 minutes from my school, so I couldn't just run home and change.  I was so embarrassed, but luckily, I had on pants, and my kids never noticed it!     

Be sure to go link-up, and share all of your fashion!   

Hopefully tomorrow, I will FINALLY post my Monday-Made-It!  I know, I know, LATE, but I have family in town so I just haven't gotten around to taking pictures! You are going to LOVE it though :)  

Friday, August 3, 2012

August Currently... :)

Hey everyone! Again, I've been MIA...I have to get better! We went to visit hubby's parents for the weekend and first part of the week, then Wednesday and Thursday, I had a workshop to write the School Improvement Plan.  They change the template every year it seems, so we can never work off of one we have from the previous year...UGH.  Anyways, we got it completed (for now...seems something ALWAYS has to be changed.  Like we don't know what we as a school need to improve on?), so now I can get back to bloggy land for the last few weeks before school starts.  :-\

Hubby built my bookcase to go under the window in my classroom! Now he just has to paint it, and help me complete my bench to go on top!  Hopefully it will be ready in time for Monday Made It!  I also got to make a pennant to hang over my windows! My mother-in-law worked on it ALL DAY Monday!  But it turned out so cute! Can't wait to get back to school to hang it!

I'm linking up with Farley from Oh Boy 4th Grade for August Currently!  

B2S Must Haves:

1.  Clothes! Ever since I was little, I have LOVED back to school shopping!  Something about a new outfit for the first day of school! This weekend is tax-free weekend in North Carolina, so I always take advantage! However this past year, I have put on a TON of weight...and have no explanation for it.  No matter what I do, I can't seem to get it off! So while I would LOVE to go shopping this weekend for that "back-to-school" outfit, I don't want to spend a lot of money on clothes I hopefully won't be able to fit into soon! On the other hand, I don't know if I have many clothes that FIT right now, so I need to buy at least ONE right?!

2- Guided Math.  LOVE it!  I tried my hand at math workshop last year, and it was a struggle, let me tell ya! But I feel I have gotten some great ideas from this book, and can't wait to implement it!

3- Ear buds for students- We have head phones at each computer in our labs, however, have you ever thought about those things being on someone's head, and then on yours? No telling what you can get! And as many cases of lice I had in my room last year (from TWO students), I just get the hibby jibby's thinking about it!  So, I plan to get ear-buds for each student, so they can have their own, and we won't have to worry about that!

That's it! I'm off to go walking!  Hopefully I can finish up the last few little projects I have, so I can post this weekend!  Be sure to go link up with Farley! 

Friday, July 27, 2012

Working in Room...

Well, I bit the bullet and started working in my classroom this week.  I only meant to go in on Monday, and take hubs to move the big furniture, but we have decided to go out of town for part of the week next week, and I have a school improvement workshop the last 2 days of the week, then the next week my family will be in town.  So that leaves a week before teachers have to report back to get my room ready.  Not possible!!!!

I ended up going back on Wednesday AND Thursday.  I got my desks arranged, started to change out border on the bulletin boards (I ran out, so I couldn't finish the last sad), my math center put together, and my desk and small group area! But what I am most proud of is Organizing not one, but TWO filing cabinets :)  I had needed to do that for a while now, so I am excited I actually made myself sit down and do it!

Here are the before pictures of my room...I will post after when I am completely finished :)

While I was at school on Wednesday, the Curriculum Specialist and Principal ran an idea by me.  Four of the teachers on the 3rd grade team (out of 6) grouped their students by ability, and then rotated the kids.  One teacher taught Reading, one taught Math, one taught SS/Writing, and one taught Science.  They had some kinks in the system, but enjoyed it by the end of the year.  Their only complaint was, the Math teacher didn't feel like she had enough time to get thru a lesson.  I think they ended up having an hour in each rotation.  So this year, they have 5 teachers, and two will teach Reading/SS, two teach math, and one teach all of the science.  Fifth grade is also going to go this route.  But they suggested the four teacher rotation for 4th would teach Reading, one math, one science, and one SS.  Last year, we had 2 groups of team-teaching, and one self-contained.  If we went to this method, 4 of us would team, and 1 be self-contained.  I have 2 problems with this:  a- two teachers will be responsible for all testing content, and b- it leaves one person out on their own.  Some of us talked, and told the principal, we either wanted to have the same set-up as 3rd and 5th grade, or keep it like it was last year.  I feel that is only fair.  I would just like to know what we are doing, and what exactly I will be teaching...considering school starts a month from today.

How do you guys work as a grade-level at your school? 

PS-  I posted the winner for my give-away last Sunday, and contacted them by email to get their address to mail the bag, and haven't heard back from them.  I emailed again tonight, and asked to please contact me.  If I don't hear anything soon, I guess I will pick another winner.  Is that rude?

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Math Notebook expectations

Last summer when I was blog-stalking, I discovered interactive math notebooks on Tales of Frogs and Cupcakes.  I know A LOT of you use it :)  I started it at the beginning of the year, and I LOVED IT!  I plan on using it again this year, and adding more to it.

As I was browsing on Pinterest tonight, I found THESE expectations.  Of course when I clicked the link, it says its has been deleted.  So I took matters into my own hands, and made my own copy :)  (If you made the original, PLEASE let me know so I can give you credit!)

(click here for your copy) 

I plan on using it to go over expectations, and students will paste it into the inside cover of their notebook.  I thought of adding a place for parents to sign also, but haven't decided yet.  Thoughts?