Friday, August 24, 2012

The Ultimate Middle Years Giveaway and Blog Hop!

Going Back Fully Stashed!

I am linking up with Krystal and Ann Marie for this fabulous 
Blog Hop and Giveaway August 25-27!
Over $300 in prizes up for grabs!
Check out out Lauren's Life in Middle School blog!
Life in Middle School is a Middle School blog.  Lauren has taught all grade levels and subjects in her middle school and is now broadening her horizons as the Technology Elective Teacher.  Her blog contains a variety of things from websites to class projects and information.  She loves keeping up with what's going on in education.  She has a TPT and TN store where she posts her creations too!  Hop on over and visit!
Life in Middle School
For more information about
The Ultimate Middle Years Giveaway and Blog Hop
head on over here and get the scoop and the entry form!

Don't miss out on all the fun!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Days 2 and 3 - It's Gonna Be a GREAT Year!

Days 2 and 3 were almost as good as day 1!
I have the BEST class!
It's going to be a fantastic year!

I have loved having this first 3 days with my kiddos without feeling like I had to jump right in to curriculum.  It has allowed us a chance to get to know each other and get in the groove.

On our second day, we did the puzzle challenge 
(that I found on Lorraine's Fabulous 4th Grade Froggies.)

The kids really enjoyed it.  Afterwards we talked about the different strategies the groups used to put their puzzles together.  It was so much fun to wander around and listen to their conversations!

At the end of the second day I asked them to reflect on the class so far and let me know what they thought and if they thought we needed to change anything.  They wrote their responses on sticky notes and left them on the board as they left.  Their comments warmed my heart.  I so wanted to establish a tone of love and friendship along with a strong sense of purposeful learning.  Seems like we are getting there.  Here are some of their responses...

I love them already!
This is gonna be the BEST year ever!

Back-to-School Sale!

If you haven't heard already, TPT is having a SALE today and tomorrow!
Save up to 28% on you BTS wish list!
Stop by TPT, fill your cart and SAVE BIG this weekend!
Please note that TPT is running slower due to the sales traffic.  
Please be patient!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

The BEST First Day Ever!

I think that I had the best first day ever in all of my MANY years of teaching!
I just love my class!
We did lots of team building and getting to know you activities today and not much meat.
I learned a LOT about some of my kiddos!
One of them is even PERFECT (just ask him!)
One of the things we did today was the sticky note posters - you know which ones.  
They are all over Pinterest.
Here are ours...
No surprises on this one.  
We learn new stuff every day.
We learn new things.
To get ready for college.

Survey says...
Clean, Quiet, Fun!

OKAY, a few surprises here...
To fly around the world. (?)
Being good.
Getting good grades/Honor Roll
Getting organized

They nailed this one!
Work hard. 
Pay attention!
No talking, playing and doing silly stuff.
Here are some of their responses...

My third grade pals trained them well!

Here's where it got interesting.
One of my boys came up and said there really wasn't anything I could do.
I said, "Really? You are already perfect?  I mean, I already know that you are AMAZING, but try to think of something I can do to help you be successful."
After a few minutes he's back with his answer, "I got nothing.  I'm just perfect."
...and he is, and I love him already!
Here is what he put on the chart
Oh, and they want HOMEWORK!

Here's what they want from each other...

Later on we did the Saving Fred activity that I found at Lorraine's Fabulous 4th Grade Froggies.
AFTER I planned it, I found out that they did it last year!  Oh well, they had fun anyway.

It was a great day, and I can't wait to get back to these kiddos tomorrow!

I hope all of you have fabulous first days too!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Ready or Not - The Kids Are Coming!

Tomorrow is the day!
The kids are coming whether I am ready or not.
I think the room is ready, but me, I'm not so sure!
Here are the final pics of the room as I walked out tonight.
This is my welcome sign on the window outside my classroom.

View of the classroom from the door...

Just inside the door is my teacher bookshelf and the library.

My Schedule Board

Smart Board and "Teaching" Spot

Focus Walls for Math and Language

Right half of my white boards

Here's my "Check For Understanding"  Stoplight.

Left side of board...

Focus Walls for Reading and Writing Workshop, clip chart, and storage

View from the Pod door...

My Morning Meeting Board
The clip chart on the left is for Meeting Leader, so everyone gets a chance.
The clips on the right are for "I am ready to share."  These clips they will keep at their tables and add their clip to the bottom if they have something they want to share during Morning Meeting.
The sound wands are being used as my talking sticks for MM.  
I also have a cute red lacquer box that holds all the slips with the Question of the Day.

This is my computer and small group table.

Individual table set-up.
A colleague of mine suggested using a Frisbee on each table to hold water bottles so if they sweat, it doesn't get the table wet.  I could not find cheap Frisbees that matched, but I scored these plastic plates at the dollar store, 4 for a dollar!

Bookcases with books and supplies for each table.
I have made stickers for the drawers that I will pit on in the morning.  
They are lined paper, scratch paper, and supplies.
dish racks hold their reading and writing journals and duct tape white boards.  
Red canvas drawer will hold their towel for reading on the floor and the white board erasers.
These will go home weekly to be washed.

Ready or not, here they come!
Good luck to all of to all of you this year!
It's gonna be a GREAT year!

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