Friday, May 31, 2013

Kids Say Funny Stuff!

14 days until summer vacation....I think I can.  I think I can...

Luckily for me, I work with AWESOME Little people everyday that make me happy.  It's just a few of the grown-ups that I could do without.  And, the paperwork.  And, meetings!

I have two cute stories to share with you today.

 Story #1:  It was small group reading time and we were going to start a new book about Mount Rushmore.  So, like I usually do, I asked the Littles if they had any prior knowledge about our new topic.  They knew that the faces were past presidents and that was about it.  Then one Little leaned in real close and whispered, "underneath is where the USA hides all the gold..............and root beer."  Little buddy!  Root beer :)

Story #2:  I am working on an end of the year project and needed to know what each Little wanted to be when they grew up.   I got to one little fella and he was having trouble pinpointing exactly what he should say.  Finally, he said, "a fireman."  One of the little sweeties close by noticed that he wasn't really sure about his decision.  She sweetly tried to help and said, "what about a policeman?..............Do you like doughnuts?"  I cracked up.

I love working with Little people.  You NEVER know what they are gonna say!

Have a blessed day,

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Baby Ducklings and Kindergarten Displays

We have baby ducklings!!! 

For several years, we have had a momma duck that has used our enclosed courtyard at school to lay her eggs.  This year she was back to repeat the tradition! 
 The ducklings have hatched and they are soooooooooo cute it's crazy!  13 babies in all...that's the most we have ever had. 
The best and worst part about our new friends is that the courtyard is right outside our classroom windows.  You can imagine keeping 6 and 7 year olds focused while furry, wittle, bitty, cutenesses are right outside.  I mean, I have a hard time not going over to check on them too! 
Our sweet and sometimes curmudgeonly janitor even went and bought duck food for them.  The ducklings are slated to eventually end up at 2 different farms near by. 
I don't want to think about them leaving.  I mean, what will I use to distract myself for the last 16 days of school :)
Here they are:

And, I just want to show off two kindergarten displays that currently adorning our hallways.  They are so stinking cute!

  Have a BLESSED day!  

Monday, May 27, 2013

Next year Linky Party

I am linking up with Finding Joy in 6th Grade for a linky party dedicated to thinking about next year!  I must admit, it's one of my FAVORITE things about being a teacher.  You know... that fresh slate every year.  Even though I STILL have 17 days left of this year, I am already thinking about what will stay the same and what needs to change for next year.  Here are a few of my thoughts:

I do that some, but I need to do this even more next year!  My school day keeps getting shorter and shorter it seems with RTI (reading and math) and pull-outs.  I just don't have time to do these separately anymore.  Heck, even writing instruction took a beating with the district requiring 30 minutes of math intervention this year on top of the allotted time for math.  I have to be more strategic and merge where I can.

Currently, I have a filing cabinet that houses lots of reproducibles and masters of worksheets/activities/resources.  I want to organize them into binders.  I KNOW that I have many duplicates and things that I don't even need or want anymore!

My district is slowly putting common core into practice.  This year, k-2 implemented common core in math and next year, we will be implementing it into literacy.  My district is also adopting a new way of measuring teacher effectiveness and it is tied to student achievement.  I work at a highly transient, low income, high ELL school.  I want to make sure that I have all my bases covered.

I love the clip chart.  My Littles love the clip chart.  I want to tweak it a little bit next year though.  Currently, if a student makes it to OUTSTANDING (the highest level), they receive a jewel to put on their clip.  After 3 jewels, they take their clip home and get a prize from the treasure box.  Next year, I want to incorporate class coupons into this system instead of the treasure box.  I also want to have a Hall of Fame spot for my clips to be retired.  These are my inspirations:

Have a Blessed week!  At least for those of us still in school it's a 4 day work week :)

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Next Year and Timelines

It's finally official....I will be back in First Grade next year.  Last week, we filled out our preference for next year.  It was difficult for me.  I adore my class this year.  They are 27 of the BEST Littles ever!  I have never had that many in one classroom before, but they make it a blast most days.  So my preference looked like this:

My principal told me today that he couldn't guarantee that if I went to 2nd that I would get my Littles.  Although I heard through the grapevine that one of my teammates was told that she would have her Littles back next year in 2nd...I WILL NOT BE BITTER If that happens  I will have a good attitude!  So, I am back in First Grade.  It truly is my favorite.  I need to remember that when I get my new group next year.  The K's this year are crazy more challenging!  There are sooooo many that I am praying mature move before school starts.

We still have 17 days of school left.  It seems like everyone in the blogging world is winding down already.  But, we are still in full force in the classroom.  This last week we have been learning about timelines.  One of our WA state standards is that students are able to create a sequential timeline about their family or life.  I came up with a simple template and we have had loads of fun with it.  I decided that highlighting 4 BIG events in each Littles' life would be enough since we are just in First Grade.  The 4 categories were:

  They were able to bring in pictures to add to their timelines.  This was the best part.  We LOVED looking at all the baby pictures of our friends that came in.  And, they were so elated that I shared my pictures with them.  Luckily, no one mentioned that I was old :)  Here are few pictures of our projects!

Hope you have a blessed weekend :)

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Mother's Day

We have worked hard preparing to celebrate our mommas!  My Littles made super cute cards to express their love. 

 My Littles loved wrapping squares of colored tissue paper around the eraser side of the pencil, dipping into liquid glue and then sticking it onto the flower shape that they cut out.  We never use liquid glue so just the sight of it elevated the project in their eyes. 

Here are a few examples of the finished product...

I hope that your Friday is WONDERFUL :)
~Happy Teaching!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Feeling Appreciated :)

I love Teacher Appreciation week...especially this time of year!  My Littles are at the point that they are acting like siblings.  It happens.  Today we had to "practice" some procedures that needed tightening up.  We reviewed and practiced how to come to the carpet.  They heard me say our famous "quickly, QUIETLY, safely"  several times today.  I seriously can't complain though.  My Littles are sweet, very social, but super sweet! 

Back to the business of Teacher Appreciation.  Our classified staff at school have gone out of their way to make us feel special.  On Monday, they brought in flowers for us.  Today they loaded the lounge with sweets of all kinds.  I can't wait to see what tomorrow brings!  My Littles have been thoughtful too.  From handpicked flowers from the flowerbed in front of the school, to chocolates and handmade cards, they have spoiled me.  One Little pulled out a piece of toast spread with nutella this morning.  I am pretty sure that it was her breakfast and she decided to give it to me.  When I tried to give it back, she wouldn't hear it.  I am blessed!

To make today even better, I went with my sweet hubby to Chipotle to take advantage of their Teacher gift (buy one get one).  Yummy! 

Photo: Thanks,  Chipotle....I feel appreciated :)

Lastly, Don't forget about the TPT sale.  I have linked up with Mrs. Leeby for the sale.  I love that she thought to do this.  You could save up to 28% :)  Click the picture to visit my store.
JUST got home from the beach & had a wonderful time, BUT, I am a little late to the Teacher Appreciation Sale.  So, all my items in my TpT store are 20% off, PLUS the 8% you get from TpT. Just use the code below :)  Plus a Buy One, Get One FREE on Thursday!! :)
~Happy Teaching


Monday, May 6, 2013

CVC practice for those that *still* need it

Happy Teacher's Appreciation Week, Friends!  I hope that you are all being celebrated each day by the Littles that love you dearly. 

My TPT shop is joining in the sale and I just uploaded a new packet tonight.  I don't know about you, but I still have a few Littles that are reading below grade level.  They still need CVC practice.  I created a packet that can support the Littles in my room that need it.  It contains 30 CVC picture cards, 3 different tracking forms, and 4 ideas on how to use the materials.  Click HERE if you are interested.
~Happy Teaching!

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Teaching about Neighborhoods

I love Saturday mornings!  And, today the sun is shining so bright and the temp. is supposed to reach 78 degrees....perfection! My hubby even has today off.  That is a rarity.  He is a church planter but also works retail to supplement his salary.  Because he needs every Sunday off, getting Saturdays off too is almost impossible.  Not today though!

This week we have been super busy in our classroom.  In social studies, we have been working on our BIG neighborhood unit.  It's one of my favorites.  Our district uses the curriculum called Storypath.  We begin by creating a neighborhood similar to the one we live in.  Each Little is responsible for creating an origami home for the neighborhood.  When I showed the Littles my home, oooohhhhhs and aaaahhhhhhs were numerous.  They couldn't wait to design and decorate their home.  It made my HGTV loving heart happy. 

 I take their houses and capture them into a SmartBoard File and we create a neighborhood.  With 27 Littles, it's hard to create a display of everything.  They also get to make other things that our neighborhood needs.  One of my Littles offered to make roadkill for the street.  I politely declined, but wanted to laugh my head off that he offered.  I will have to take a screen shot of our neighborhood next week and post it.  I can't seem to log on to the school network from home this morning.  It must be all that glorious sunshine causing interference...Just kidding. 

We also create family shields.  It's so neat to see what each Little feels is important about their family.  Here are some pictures so you get the idea.

I love that the Little above put that one of the values of his family is "Jeis"  (Jesus)!  Absolutely precious! 

I hope your Saturday is filled with sunshine too!  :)

~Happy Relaxing!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

May Currently

I am linking up with Farley for the May edition of Currently :)  Check out her blog HERE.
Oh' boy fourth grade

Here's mine:

Listening:  I don't know about you, but my hubby and I are addicted to playing candy crush.  He is soooo much better than me though.  I move them too quickly and don't plan out my strategy very well.  He methodically moves.  I blame playing Bejeweled Blitz for so long.  On it, you have to be quick because of the time limit. 
Loving:  I actually sold something on TPT!  My Bossy R Literacy/Printable Packet was actually purchased.  The fist sale made my little heart so happy!  It also inspired me to think of other things to make.  My scalloped borders are my newest little venture.  Take a look if you are interested :)

Thinking:  I really wish my principal would announce our staffing for next year.  He is new to our school so I don't really know what his intentions are just yet.  I had my end of the year PGP meeting this week and asked him and he wasn't ready to make it public.  There have been rumors of looping.  I am fine with that.  I looped from 1st to 2nd for 6 years.  But, I have heard that he might be leaning toward a k-1 loop etc.  I just wanna know! 
Wanting:  Summer Break!  I still have 33 school days left.  I keep reading other blogs that mention they have way less....I am a little jealous!  I know I will appreciate it once those schools go back to school in August and I am still on break.  It's just hard to think about that right now :)
Needing:  I need a pedicure.  It's getting to be "toes out" weather and my little piggies need a little pampering.  Maybe this weekend...
Summer Bucket List:  We moved into a new house last July and we still have boxes in the garage that need to be unpacked and put away.  Don't judge me, please :)  The hubster and I plan on getting away this summer too.  We also make the trip south to visit our folks, but we are in need of a little "couple" time too.  Thank goodness for our tax refund!  Don't know where we will get away to just yet.  I also want to tackle "that closet" in my classroom.  For the most part, I am very organized.  I take a lot of pride in how my classroom looks.  If it's not cute, I don't want it!  But, I have this one closet that catches  all the stuff that needs a home.  It has a door.  It closes so easily--out of sight, out of mind, right?  I need to organize it and get rid of the stuff that I don't need anymore.  Please tell me I am not the only one with this problem!
I hope your Friday flies by and that your Littles are absolute angels all day!