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Monday, September 9, 2013

September Monday Made It

It has been busy around here lately so I haven't had much time to be creative and make things, but I do have a couple things to share. I am linking up with Tara over at 4th Grade Frolics for Monday Made It. I only have two things today.

Last month I participated in the SLANT box exchange (I will be participating again this month...yay). I was paired up with Tara from Teaching With TWitte. I sent her a package with a pink and green theme. One rule for the exchange is that there must be one item that is handmade. I found out that Tara liked owls and pink and green. I combined those things to make her a door hanging/wall hanging. The picture of it is courtesy of Tara (I forgot to take a pic before sending it I said it has been crazy around here).

I finally got around to creating another set of clipart. I needed this set for a fall project that I plan on doing with my class. This project will also turn in to another Teachers Pay Teachers product that should be ready to be posted sometime in the next couple of weeks.
Tonight I posted this set of Pumpkin Clip Art to my TPT store. It is FREE for a limited time. Be sure to leave me some feedback if you take advantage of this free offer.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

What I'm Planning Sunday

Here is what I have planned for the week:
I am posting my lessons (they are normally more detailed, but I turned them into a pdf without all of the extra details like homework, notes, and standards.





Friday, September 6, 2013

Five for Friday 9-6-13

Friday's Post:
5 for Friday
I am linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for the 5 for Friday linky party.

The 100 Book Challenge
Last week I started the 100 Book Challenge with my students. I have been floored over the past week about all the progress they have made as readers. They are constantly begging me for time for them to read. I have one who has completed 50 books already.

Wayside School Books
Last year I started a tradition of starting the year off with the three Wayside School books as our read alouds. The students LOVE these books and always beg for more. I am all about things that get my kiddos excited about reading!

Daily 5
As I mentioned in an early post I have kicked off the beginning of my Daily 5 already, but will also be beginning my online training of Daily 5 this weekend. I am so excited to learn so much more and improve my Daily 5 skills.

Clutter Free Classroom Photo-a-Day Challenge
This challenge has been great. It has made me stop and think about these things that are happening all around us in the month of September. I know that at the end of the year I can look back at my documentation of this month and appreciate it. 
Yesterday's topic was paper and I did not get my picture posted, but I did take a picture of paper today. Here is what I posted for the Challenge:
I have a lot of papers to be grading this weekend!

I watched this amazing documentary on CBS tonight. I saw something about it on Facebook and quickly set my DVR to record it in case I didn't get to watch it on time. I started it half an hour late so I was grateful that I had DVRed it.
I wish everyone (not just teachers) would watch this and see some of the challenges we go through and what we do to overcome those challenges.

I am also linking up with Hoots N' Hollers for the Fabulous Finds Fridays Linky.
My fabulous find is the fact that Verizon gives a discount to teachers! My husband and I got a new cell phone plan last weekend through Verizon. Tuesday morning one of the teachers sent out a list of places that give teacher discounts and I notice Verizon on the list. I did some research and sure enough I was eligible. Our discount was applied to our bill today. So if you have Verizon and were not aware of this discount, get on it!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

What I'm Loving Wednesday

I am linking up with Covered in Glitter and Glue today once again for the lovely What I'm Loving Wednesday linky. It has been awhile since I have linked up so I am glad to be linking up again.

First up,
I am loving that I have been approved to attend the Daily 5 online seminar. It is starting Sunday! I can't wait! For more information head on over to:
The Daily Cafe

I am loving that my first Donor's Choose project has finally been posted. If you feel like helping a class in need out, I would really appreciate it.

I am loving The Clutter Free Classroom's photo-a-day challenge. I forgot to post my picture yesterday so today I posted two.

Here is my picture for Back-to-School

And here is my picture of my alarm

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

What's In My Book Box?

As promised I am bringing you a post about what can be found in my student's book boxes for Daily 5.

But first, I must share some amazing news that I got today. Last year about half way through the year I started doing Daily 5. At that point all I had done was read the book and looked up some information online. I found the Daily 5 for Dummies guide and used that to set things up. I loved Daily 5 and was determined to make it better. This summer I spent time researching it more and started from the beginning of the year.

I am subscribed to the Sisters weekly newsletter. Awhile back they had a little blurb in there about the new online seminars they would be doing. I had been unable to go to their other seminars due to the locations. When I saw the online seminars I forwarded the information on to my assistant principal (she is the one who makes the requests for the PDs we attend).

Today I learned that the request she put in for me to be able to participate was approved. I will be participating in the online seminar that begins this weekend. I am so thrilled to learn from the Sisters! The final webinar is actually put on by the Sisters themselves! I am confident that this 4 week online seminar will greatly improve my teaching of Daily 5.

Okay, now back to the book boxes. Today I will be giving you a tour of what can be found in the book boxes in my room. The pictures are all of the current book boxes, but I will also mention a few more things that will be added later in the year.

Here is the book box. We were lucky last year that we had a Classroom Granny (my wonderful mother). Not only was she a great help on Fridays, but she also bought her "grandkiddos" some great gifts throughout the year. This was my personal favorite. She bought a set of 20 book boxes (I already had six others, so all I needed was 20). I attached a label with a number on the front so that they don't have to be relabeled every year.

Inside there are anywhere from 3 to 7 books depending on the length of the books. This particular student really likes Junie B Jones (me too).

Inside the students also find a word journal. This word journal is used for Word Work. It contains every spelling list for the whole year so they always have a copy to use for practice. It also has a recording sheet for each letter of the alphabet. They will use this to write the words they have trouble spelling.

They have a writing notebook to used during Work on Writing. This is used when I give them free write. If I give them something specific to write about I provide a different paper for that. This notebook they use to just practice writing and to write independently. Last year it worked great, but this year I may have to make some changes with this bunch. I'm giving it time before making any decisions though.

Each box has a pencil pouch. The pencil pouch starts out with three sharpened pencils. All Daily 5 pencils have a special red and white striped piece of tape on the end. These pencils should only be used for Daily 5. The tape is to remind them. Anytime their pencil breaks they trade it out with one of their others. When Daily 5 is over they bring their pencil pouch to me and I replace the pencils in need of being replaced. Later in the year I also add pencil cap erasers and pencil grippers. They don't get to start out with these. Those items have to be earned.

Each box contains an individual packet of Kleenex. Students know that they can use these during Daily 5. After a round is over they may throw them away. This keeps them from using the excuse of needing to blow their nose during Daily 5 time.

Other items that will be found in the book box later in the year:
~A Daily 5 folder to keep papers in that help with Daily 5
~Book recommendations
~Resources that help them improve

So there you have it. A look inside my book boxes!

Monday, September 2, 2013

September Currently and What I'm Planning Monday!

Today I am bringing you three topics. To start out I am linking up with Farley at Oh Boy 4th Grade for the first time. Here is my September Currently.

I am listening to Grey's Anatomy Season 9 on Netflix while I work on my plans for the week. I was so excited yesterday when Netflix emailed me to inform that Season 9 was now on Netflix. I love my Grey's Anatomy and had recently watch the whole series all over again. I was hoping to watch all of Season 9 before Season 10 starts.

I am loving the fact that it is a three-day weekend. I have been able to catch up on my sleep that I had been lacking in. I also have been able to plan two weeks of lesson plans and meals for the week.

I have a rough group of kiddos this year. I love every single one of them, but they are a handful and what has worked in the past is not working now. Whole Brain Teaching has been great for most, but there are still a few who I need to come up with a new plan for. I am determined to get it under control quick so we can get to the learning. These kiddos need that learning since their behavior has caused them to fall behind in previous years.

I really want a warm brownie with ice cream and chocolate syrup on top. Just typing about it makes me want it more. I think I am going to have to go buy some brownie mix and make some.

I am almost done with my plans. I have the lesson plans done, I just need to figure out my homework for the week and then I will head to school to make some copies.

Loving Myself:
In order to love myself I need to get back to running. This has been a major stress reliever for me in the past, but finding the time for it has been difficult. Since I have a rough group this year, I am sure that I will be in need of some stress relief. I told my dad that when it cools down a little I plan to start running with him again. My goal for this month is to actually get back to it.
I also plan to go out with the hubby every weekend. In order to love myself I have to spend time with him and enjoy life. I do not want to fall in the pattern of school, school, school like I did last year. I love my job, but it can tear me apart from my husband.
And finally, I am going to keep Saturdays school free. I have done that for two weeks now and it was an adjustment, but it has been nice. I am now seeing that it is important to take time for myself and just enjoy life. The only exception to school free is that I might blog, but those will be posts that were prepared ahead of time.

Now for What I'm Planning Sunday...err...Monday:
This week I am planning for school:
~Continue with Read to Self and Work on Writing
~Introduce Read to Someone
~Mini lessons on using prior knowledge and subjects
~Read Aloud for the Week: Wayside School is Falling Down (the kiddos really enjoyed Sideways Stories and are loving this second book so far)
~Aimsweb benchmark testing for Math
~Continue using the Forces and Motion: A Science Unit for Kids (my kiddos have absolutely loved this unit; we have been going through it pretty slow due to benchmark testing and adjustment periods, but now we will be doing one activity a day and will be finishing it this week)
~Our third Free Write from 30 Freewrites to Get Your Students Started Writing (the kiddos have also been loving this weekly activity)

Next week I'll try to actually have my plans shown by what I'm doing each day.

This week for dinner I am planning:
Monday: Chili and Cornbread Waffles
Tuesday: Chicken and Noodles
Wednesday: hubby closes so leftovers
Thursday: hubby closes so leftovers
Friday: Chile Chicken Casserole
Saturday: Chili Dogs

Sunday, September 1, 2013

I'm Finally Back!

Wow, it's been awhile since I have been able to post. I have had my hands full with some of my students. I also was fighting a sinus infection. I have been getting my rest and getting myself back to the person I should be and can finally say I am there.

I am back tonight to post about a few things. And hopefully I will be able to keep posting throughout this week. I have many things I would like to share with you all.

Here is a picture of my classroom now. I messed up and didn't get pictures the first few days so instead you get a picture of a two-week old room. I feel like it is still lacking in something. I am constantly making adjustments to make it feel just right, but it is still not there yet.

And the final part of my post today is sharing my SLANT box for August. Have you heard of SLANT box? If not, head on over to Lessons With Coffee to read more about it. I am glad to be a part of this program. You can join any month.
I had the privilege of meeting two great bloggers. I was paired with Jess from Tales of a Techie Teacher and Tara from Teaching With TWitte. Jess sent me a package and I sent Tara a package.
I received my package the other day and here is what I got:
File folders, sticky notes, silver permanent marker, command strips, dry-erase calendar, and a diamond ring shaped eraser.

I will be back tomorrow to show you what I am planning this week. I am posting on Monday instead since tomorrow there is no school.