Tuesday, June 30, 2015

July Currently

Is it really July already?!?!?!? This summer is going by to fast! I am excited for my first currently link up with Farley from Oh' Boy 4th Grade! I am looking forward to reading about what everyone is up to!
I am currently listening to White Collar. I love this show and you all know Matt Boomer is gorgeous!
I am loving summer!1 Lazy days, family time, friend time, no alarm clocks and staying in my pjs I could definitely get used to this! 
I am thinking about my beach trip!! 2 more weeks! I can hear the waves and smell the salty air already:)
I am wanting to go to the Target dollar spot again! I have already been a few times... shhhh don't tell on me!! I want to go back and get the caddies and book bins. My target was out of them when I went Saturday :(
I am needing to print and laminate my new alphabet and number posters so I can hang them in my classroom on Thursday!
I am an all star clipart addict! I have been spending way to much time trying to organize my clipart. I have a TON and I want more. You can't really have to much clipart right???? 

Head over to Farley's blog to catch up on others July Currently's and link up to join in on the fun! Thanks for stopping by!!

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Winner Wednesday- Superheroes

It's time for Winner Wednesday! I love this blog link up hosted by the fabulous A Dab of Glue will do! This giveaway is the first Wednesday of every month. You can enter a chance to win an item from many talented teacher bloggers!! I am happy to be giving away one of my favorite units for back to school. I used this unit last year with my kiddos and they loved every minute of it. 
I couldn't find my pictures of my kiddos in action with these centers. The beginning of the year is always such a blur!!!
This unit includes lots of superhero fun! 
The literacy activities include color the room, roll and graph letters, letter puzzles, vowel graphing, sight word font sort, color by sight word code and teeny tiny letters (one of my kids favorite centers!!)

The math activities include playdoh number mats, spin and trace numbers, roll and graph, roll and cover, number puzzles, count the room and a counting book.

For a chance to win enter your name in the rafflecopter below. Winner will be announced Thursday!!! If you don't want to wait you can head over to my TPT store to grab this unit:)

 Head over to A Dab of Glue for a chance to win some other fabulous products! Link up to join in on the Winner Wednesday fun!!!
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Tell All Tuesday- Summer Flashback

I really love these Tuesday Tell all link ups with My Day in K and Teach Talk Inspire! Today's tell all is summer flashbacks.

Let's head on back to the good ole days when my baby was really a baby!! As you all know I love the beach. When I was a little girl my family went every summer. Sometimes just my parents, my brother and I and sometimes my grandparents aunts, uncles and cousins would come. I will cherish those memories forever. So when I had a daughter of my own I wanted to start that tradition with her. She didn't have a love for the beach right away!! She hated the sand and was scared of the water HA! As she grew up a little bit she came to have the same love for the beach as her mamma thank God!
This is one of my favorite pictures of my sleeping beauty!
Toes in the water only mom please!
Now she is enjoying herself!
We also spent a lot of time over the summer with family and friends. Here's a little flashback from a cookout at the lake! The kids loved their popsicles! Look how little they are! 2 of these kiddos have graduated high school, 2 will be seniors and 2 will be sophomores! Times flies to quickly! 

Thanks for stopping by!!I hope you enjoyed traveling back in time with me!! Head over to these 2 fabulous blogs to check out even more summer flashbacks and join in on the fun!


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Sunday, June 28, 2015

Sunday Scoop

I can not believe another Sunday has come and almost gone! Time needs to slow down a little. I am enjoying participating in all these fun link ups this summer. I am linking up with the Teaching Trio to bring you my Sunday Scoop!
Have to:
1. My parents will celebrate 40 years of marriage on the 25th of this month! My sister-in-law and I are planning a surprise party for them! My mom doesn't love surprises and should have been an FBI detective so it has been a job trying to keep this a secret!
2. I have been working on several things for TPT and can't seem to get this last one done! I am hoping to finish it this week!!!
3. I need a haircut like no one knows!! I also need to color it but am going to wait a till it's a little closer to school starting:)

Hope to:
1. I am planning on working in my classroom this week. My principal emailed that the floors had been done so we could get in the school now.  Since I painted my classroom at the beginning of the summer my classroom is completely bare! I need to rehang everything. Plus I am going to take advantage and rearrange the furniture in my room as well. 
2. I am looking forward to spending some time with a great friend I haven't gotten to see in a while this week!!

Happy to:
I will be planning our beach trip! We will be going in the next few weeks! Hopefully that will take my mind off the fact that I will not be going to TPT Vegas this year!!

Thanks for stopping by to read my Sunday scoop be sure to head over to the Teaching Trio to read other's scoops and link up to join in on the fun!

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Rock Your First Year Teaching-link up

I am super excited to be linking up with Teaching with Crayons and Curls and My Mommy Rocks for this linky! I would have LOVED to have something like this when I first started teaching! I can't wait to read about other teachers' advice. It is always good to hear from other teachers and learn something new:)

1. Find a mentor teacher-if you are not given one to start the year. Having a mentor teacher in your grade level would be ideal! Don't be afraid to ask for help that's what they are there for. Surround yourself with teachers who are positive and helpful...most teachers are so you shouldn't have any trouble here!!

2. Enjoy your students. Take time to get to know them. What do they like, what makes them happy, what are their strengths and weaknesses. Be a kid watcher. You learn so much about them by their interactions with each other. Swing with them, slide down the slide and hula hoop if they ask you too. Children are the reason we do this job and make it worth so much more than the paycheck!

3. Be consistent!!! As a new teacher this was hard for me:) I wanted my kiddos to like me and I wanted them to love school. I struggled with classroom management because I wasn't consistent and they picked up on it. I promise your students will love and respect you for providing a safe environment that gives them structure and expectations!
1. Get overwhelmed! It is easy to do and very hard advice for me to follow myself! Just take a step back breathe and know it will all work out in the end.

2. Don't try to many new things at one time! This will lead to being overwhelmed ha! Pick one or two things to implement at a time and give them time to run smoothly before trying something new. You don't have to keep up with your teaching neighbor you do what works for you:)
Always remember that tomorrow is another day. If a lesson didn't go right or the kids were out of control today then tomorrow will be better. Don't beat yourself up or doubt your ability to teach. 

Head over to Teaching Crayons and Curls to read other teachers advice to make your first year of teaching rock!!!

Thanks for stopping by to read this post! 

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Saturday, June 27, 2015

Spotlight Saturday-Round 3

It is Saturday! Another week of summer vaca has come and gone!!! I am really enjoying linking up with Erin from Kindergarten Dragons for Spotlight Saturday. It is such a great way to spotlight other teachers as well as things that work well in your classroom. I am so thankful that I have meet so many fabulous people through the blogging community. I am very blessed to have met Erin and now consider her a great friend!!!!
This week I decided to spotlight something that is very near and dear to my teacher heart!
Whole Brain Teaching has changed my teaching life for the better. Around 5 years ago I had a really difficult class. I really struggled with controling them. We all know as teachers you can not teach an out of control class! So over Christmas break that year I started researching classroom management ideas on the internet. I can across a youtube video on a WBT kindergarten classroom and immediately was interested! I watched several more videos and read all I could find on WBT from their website. When I got back from Christmas break I began implementing Class-yes, the WBT classroom rules and the scoreboard. Who would've guessed the success I found with it! My kids LOVED all of these components. I began to read and research more so the next school year I could implement even more the next school year. I would suggest ordering this book too! It is an easy read that lays out WBT and gives you the research behind it. I ordered mine from Amazon for $14.99.
These are the traditional WBT classroom rules. I start day one introducing them to my kinders. We do one rule a day and practice, practice, practice, practice it with the scoreboard. They earn smilies or frownies depending on whole class participation. The scoreboard is an awesome motivating too! Each rule has a gesture to go along with it. Everyday we repeat the rules with the gesture. Several times throughout the day for the first several weeks! The kids really get into this! 
These are part of the BIG seven as WBT calls them. the rules and scoreboard are part on the big 7. These teaching strategies are guaranteed to increase your student engagement and reduce your behavior problems. The kids get so involved with participating in the lesson that they don't have a lot of time to act up. (Yes you will still have a few non-conformers but I'll show you how to address them next:)
Class-Yes- I love this one! It is a great way to get the whole class' attention. The teacher says "class" and the class says "yes".  However you say class they are to respond with yes. Be silly and get creative! The sillier the better. Think about it this gives the kids to be loud, use silly voices, make noises whatever you choose. So they get some of that out of the way and can focus on the lesson. 
Mirrors-  this is another one of my favorites (okay they are all my favorite HA!) Mirrors is a great tool that encourages student involvement. 
Hands and Eyes- When you really need to get your class' attention to tell them something important you will use this strategy. You will say "Hands and eyes" and the class will repeat it and fold their hands and lock their eyes on the teacher!  Magical I know!
Teach-ok!-  This strategy is like pair and share or shoulder partners with a twist. When they teach each other they use the gestures and words. So they are teaching the concept with words and movement. Engaging more of their brain and deepening their understanding!
Switch- This is part of teach-ok! They are just switching up who is teaching and who is listening. 
I encourage you to go to the website and read more about these strategies. I promise if you decide to use WBT you will not regret it! BEST thing I ever did for my classroom and my sanity!
I started using the Super Improvers Wall this year! I threw out the clipchart and I don't regret it! The SIW is a wonderful thing! It celebrates the behavior and academic improvements of each student. They earn a star for each improvement. Each level has 10 stars. So at the end of the year is a child makes it to the top they have made 100 improvements throughout the year! Pretty impressive huh?!?!
These are the student cards that I am going to use this year. I will staple the level cards to it. I copy the level cards on whatever color the level on the SIW is. It is a great visual for the kids. It also sparks math conversation because they will say I only need__ more stars to move to the next level. My class this year celebrate each other so much! They would stop and give a round of applause everytime someone earned a star. When classmates moved up a level there were high fives and ways to goes all around! I love this tool and hope you guys will implement this with you upcoming students:)

It is important to let the kids set their own goals for the super improvers wall. It can be challenging to keep up with 20 students goals so this form helped me! I also will be giving out certificates when a child moves up levels this year. 
This tool will help you say goodbye to your clipchart and treasure box and hello to children who children that celebrate their own as well as classmates successes both with academics and behavior!  

All of this can be found in the FREE in the pack! Click on the link to TPT to download it. I would love some feedback!

I hope i peeked your interest on Whole Brain Teaching! There are several book studies happening right now! Tiffani fromTime 4 Kindergarten is leading one for Kindergarten and the fabulous Farrah Shipley from Mrs. Shipley's Whole Brain Classroom is leading one for First grade!
Whole Brain Teaching Website

Head over to Kindergarten Dragons to read about other Spotlight Saturdays and link up to join the fun!


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Weekend Warriors: 3-2-1 Teacher Bio

I can not believe that June is almost over! The summer is going by so fast. We go back to school August 3rd so I have just over a month left!! I always enjoy the whole month of June and when July comes along I get into teacher mode. Planning out lists, buying supplies and creating things for my classroom and kinders:) I am excited to link up with some fabulous teacher bloggers for this month's installment for weekend warriors.
Here's how it works!

1. I absolutely love teaching kindergarten. I taught first grade for six years and I enjoyed it. I asked to move to kindergarten after a really tough year because I just needed a change. Nod your head if you've been there! After getting over the initial shock and exhaustion of the first few weeks in kindergarten I knew without a shadow of a doubt that is where I was suppose to be. I can not imaging teaching any other grade!!! There is just something so magical  about the journey through kindergarten. In August you have 20 little people walk into your room who have mostly never experienced school. They can not write their names, name any letters or add. Throughout the course of the year they bloom into thinkers and learners. That child who couldn't write his name for the first 2 months of kindergarten can now write a story with matching illustrations! The little girl who thought all 26  letters of the alphabet were the letter A can now read fluently and with expression. It truly is an amazing world and I wouldn't trade it for anything!!!

2. I am a HUGE Whole Brain Teaching enthusiast! I have been using for 5 years and can say it has changed my classroom management and student engagement 100%. School should be fun with WBT you still are teaching all those standards you are just giving the info to them in small chunks and the kids are using gestures and teaching each other along the way! If you have never heard of WBT or are interested in finding out more hop over to the Whole Brain Teaching Website

3. Lastly I am a planner! I need to know exactly what is going to happen in my classroom for the week and can't leave in the afternoons until I am ready for the next day. I tend to plan for several weeks at a time and have a filling cabinet that has my center activities, whole group activities and any copies I need ready to go:) 
1. I have a maxi skirt addiction! I love them. They are so comfortable and fun. When I find one I like I generally will buy it in several colors. Thank you Target, Ross and Rue 21 for feeding my habit. 

2. I am also a list maker....sometimes my lists have lists! I am guilty of going back and adding something to my list I have done but wasn't on the list originally so I can mark it off. You know my fellow list makers are guilty of this as well! My laptop, teacher table, refrigerator and vanity mirror are usually home to several sticky notes. I also have a few notebooks for lists as well. 

I would love to visit Paris. I started a savings account for it so lets hope it grows quickly ha! I hope to go in the next few years!

I hope you enjoyed reading my teacher bio thank you for stopping by. Link up with the Weekend Warriors below to read about other teachers and join in on the fun! Happy June!

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Thursday, June 25, 2015

Summer- Share and Prepare

I am linking up with Marie from Once Upon a Classroom: A Teacher's Tales for this share and prepare linky party. What a great way to share ideas and products to help each other be more prepared for the next school year! This week I am sharing a unit that is a HUGE hit with my kinders. WE LOVE PETE THE CAT! My kiddos were begging to read about Pete!! This is such a fun unit to kick off the year. The man that draws Pete is an Auburn University graduate and even though I am a die hard Alabama fan I think it is incredible that he lived in our state. My kinders think it awesome that a famous artist went to a college that is pretty well know around here and is close to us as well.
This unit also got a makeover recently with the #tptsellerchallenge
These are some of the Pete books I have. When the book fair came at the end of the year I added a few more to the collection.
This is the letter matching activity.  They match upper and lower case letters. As you can see Daleni spelled her name after she matched the letters. She was very proud of herself:)
QR codes are something that my kids really enjoy doing. I try to have 1 to 2 QR centers each week. One for literacy and one for math. For this center they scan the code and then color the matching letter on the recording sheet.
For some reason these are the only pictures I could find of my kinders in action with the activities in this unit. I'm sure it's because I was in the beginning of the year teacher fog!!! 
Here are the activities that are included in this unit. 
Literacy activities: QR code letters, write the room, letter match, teeny tiny letters, spin a vowel and a sight word font sort.
Math activities: 10 frame match up, spin and graph shapes, playdoh number mats, count the room, roll and trace numbers.
There are a few writing activities as well. Label Pete and I'm rocking in my shoes! 
Groovy Fun with Pete the Cat is $3.00 in my TPT store. You can click on the preview pictures to link to this unit.

Want a chance to win?!?!?
Enter the rafflecopter below for a chance to win then head over to Once Upon a Classroom-A Teacher's Tale to read about other ideas and products to help you start the school year off prepared! Link up to join in on all the fun! Winner will be announced Sunday morning!
Once Upon a Classroom

The winner is Lori Tecler!! Congrats I just sent your unit!!

                                                               a Rafflecopter giveaway

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