Monday, August 27, 2012

Back on the train! Monday Made it!

My eye may have been twitching all this past week due to stress but I am BACK for Monday Made it! My hubby was drafting his team for fantasy football last Friday so I had a few "me" hours after the kids went to sleep Friday night. I actually have completed the craft to-do list that I started back in June! Can I get a woot woot?!

I am *so* super excited about these crafts, and now I can finally take completed classroom pictures to share with you all!
First I made the READ letters that you've seen all over Pinterest! (Mine were mostly Tara inspired :)
I'm obsessed!

Then I made a snazzy little cork board for my personal pictures behind my desk. This one is Abby inspired.
I found the cork board tiles at Hobby Lobby - they come in a pack of 4-12x12 tiles and fit together like this picture. I taped off chevron stripes (just eyeballed it) and started painting!
I applied 2 coats - the board is dark so the green didn't completely cover it after one coat. I peeled the tape off before the paint completely dried so it didn't take any paint with it. There are a few edges where it seeped through, but it gives it character - the cork board is naturally not "perfect" You really only see them if you look super close.
I'm so excited to hang them up and take pictures of my classroom! Now head on over to Tara's blog to see what everyone else has been creating this week!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

How do you dismiss?

Tomorrow is officially the first day of school!

Now that I've got most of my I's dotted and T's crossed in the classroom, open house over, my lesson plans ready, books and materials pulled out - I needed to get my dismissal list ready!
 
Ya'll... I need lots of thoughts and prayers this next month! We have 5 kindergarten classrooms and we ALL have 26-27 kids on our rosters. EEEK! We all had most of them show up at open house so that means... we will actually have that many the first day/ weeks/ month of school! Our principals cannot get permission from the district to hire another teacher until school has started, attendance is taken and there is an obvious overflow of kids. (Our cap here is 22, but if there's only one or two over per class we can waiver it) but twenty! seven! 

I look forward to getting to know all 27 of them! ha! They all seemed precious at open house, but I seriously need some happy thoughts sent my way until (crossing fingers!) we can get another teacher at our school. You all know what a difference 5 (or 1 for that matter!) kids can make!

Back to the topic - that first week or two of school when you're still trying to figure out who the kids' parents are, what car they drive, etc. you need a good dismissal routine to keep everyone accounted for! Last year I used popsicle sticks with my kid's names and my name on it. I passed them out at the end of the day and they had to hand it to me before they could leave. It works, but when one kids wanders off a little you might not automatically know who is missing (especially when you have so many to keep up with!) 

One of my teammates (shout out Lynnette!) did this last year and it is SO SMART! 
All you'll need to do is print a class list in 2 columns. Attach to a clipboard and write your kids' names on a clothespin. When you are lining up at the end of the day, instead of the child having to keep up with a Popsicle stick, or putting it in his/ her mouth, using it as a sword (you know they will!!) just clip the clothespin to their backpack strap. 

THEN, as your kids leave you take the clothespin off and clip it by their name on your clipboard. That way you know who you've dismissed and who is still waiting...or wandered into another line.
I'm super excited to use this routine this year! I hope this tip helps you, too!


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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Back to School Blog Hop!

Have you guys been following the Back to School Blog Hop that Mary at Sharing Kindergarten has organized?! 
I'm super excited to share with you some Back to school freebies! My sweet friend Shuna at Pocket Full of Kinders and I are sharing our freebies with you today! Some of these I've posted before - one is new, so get your clicking finger ready and start clickin' away on all the fabulous freebies from (me and) my bloggy buddies!

Click on the pictures to download!
{cafeteria expectations craftivity}
 
{Ultimate Teacher Binder}

 {Hoot Hoot! I'm a helper! Classroom jobs freebie}

{Bright Chevron Clip Chart}
I hope you found something that you can use!! 
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Saturday, August 18, 2012

Whew!

Morning friends!

Ya'll - this was our first week back and I am POOPED! It was only Wed-Friday, but we were out of town last Saturday-Tuesday, so I didn't have any time to recover from vacation (you know.. unpack, laundry, etc..) so I am just plain worn out! 

I'm S...l....o...w...l...y.. making progress on my room! Luckily, I got a lot done before we went back and am able to focus on the small stuff and planning, etc. this week! Open house is Thursday this week so I PROMISE I will have classroom pictures this week! :D Can't wait for you guys to see it!

I whipped up some name tags for my team (we're all going to be a specific color so we can easily pick out our kids when we leave P.E., etc - you know how it is! It takes a good week to be able to recognize your own kidlets! :) so I thought I'd share them with you guys! Just print onto cardstock and laminate. We're using Avery address labels to stick their names onto the tags then attaching the name badge clips to the tags.

 Click {here} to snag them!
They're in 5 different colors so you can do the same thing with your teammates if you like!

 Have a fabulous weekend!

Monday, August 13, 2012

*last* Made it of the summer

You guys... it's my last summer Made it!
{sad face}
Hopefully I can keep it up somewhat during the school year. We'll see! 
My Made It's this week were all SUPER DUPER easy! And I want to thank Miss Kindergarten for introducing me to the fabulous PAINT PEN! I haven't used one since a project in 7th grade maybe?! I faintly remember having dramatic issues with them bleeding and causing large messes all. over. the. place. BUT! I've grown up! haha It seems like I can handle one now!

Did you see Hadar's post last week?? These super cute apples?!

I made some for my teammates as back-to-school gifts. And the best part?! Those little wood apples are only 99 cents from Hobby Lobby - I'm sure if you can catch them on sale they would only be 50 cents! So my total investment? $5 and maaaybe 20 minutes. Yep. that's all! Those little paint pens take no time at all to dry!
 Aren't they cute?!

While I was at it with the paint pen, I made a few more things:
I found these little "bags" at Michael's for a dollar each.
 {I'm going to hang this by the door and bingo board}
{Box top collector!}
{and a little tub for my sight word chant sticks from Kathleen at Growing Kinders - they are AWESOME!}

Here's a little sneak of the pennant banners I made:
As soon as I get them up in my room I will have a better picture! If you want to snag some for yourself, check them out HERE for free!

Happy Monday friends!
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Friday, August 10, 2012

Back to school!

Happy Friday friends!

I'm part of a blog hop with some wonderful fellow blogger teachers to share some products we think would be super helpful for you starting out the new school year! Thank you Christina for hosting this linky!
If you are a Pre-K or Kindergarten teacher, check out my Alphabet Craftivity packet - there is a craft, letter search, AND handwriting sheet for each letter of the alphabet! (2 for vowels - long and short!) This packet is sure to be super helpful in teaching the alphabet! It is a perfect "closer" once you have taught the letters (I know we all have our different orders!) Plus, who doesn't want to hang up a bunch of cute little letter craftivities all over their room?!
There is a craftivity for each letter plus letter search pages and handwriting practice. Head on over to my store to check it out! It is 28% off August 12th-13th! While you are there look at my featured products - all of them are back - to - school related! So stock up now while TpT is on sale! My store will be 20% off and enter code BTS12 for an additional 10% off!
 {button by the fabulous 3am teacher!}

Now head on over to the next Top teacher's blog to see what they have in store for you!

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Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Writing Offices

Hi ya'll!

I'm super excited about having a writing center in my class this year! I promise I will have pictures soon! My room is getting closer to up and running but still needs some work, so when I get it all together I will show you :)

I had writing offices in my class last year, but they had sight words on them and when we take spelling tests (after Christmas) I want to be able to use the offices as..well..offices. I *love* having the alphabet chart easily accessible and the "writer's eye" reminders that are all over pinterest. My kids will use these while they are writing and ALSO during their tests.

So, I made a little variation for my kiddos:
 If you'd like a copy click HERE to snag yours!
I can't wait to make 20 more for my new kids!

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Monday, August 6, 2012

Tidy tubs!

Made it Monday friends!!
I'm super excited about my "made it" this week! 

Do you all have the constant problem of paper scraps littering the floor like I do?!
I LOVE me some cut and paste activities - what kindergartener (or 1st? or 2nd grader?!) doesn't need to strengthen their fine motor skills? But the problem I have is.. the disaster my room is left in afterward! I have a classroom helper whose job is to collect trash...keep the room clean, etc, but when you've got 20 kids cutting teensy little bits of paper, it's inevitable that a lot is going to fall through the cracks!

So - when I "craft it up" (as the hubby says) at home, I have a bag that I hang over the corner of my chair and put all my scraps in. When it gets full, I take it out to the trash can. So why not incorporate this into the classroom?? I bought a $1 tub for each of my tables at Dollar Tree and attached a little sign on them, tied some ribbon, and waaahla! Tidy tubs!
I will keep these tubs on a shelf and when we are doing cut and paste activities, put one at each student table. This way kids aren't getting up several times to be mischievous throw their trash away and every little scrap will make it to the trash can. After the activity is over and all scraps are in the tidy tubs, I will have one student go and dump it into the big trash cans. Problem solved! The tidy tubs go back on the shelf and will make their next appearance when the scissors come out!
Of course - I'm sharing the labels with you! There are two different options in two different sizes so {hopefully!} they will fit most tubs that you would find at the dollar store!
{click on the picture to snag your labels!}

I've been working away on digging junk out of my closet my classroom getting things ready for the year and also made these little cuties! {from Amy at Step into 2nd grade}
 Didn't they turn out adorable?! Can't wait to put them up on my closet door!
Now head back over to Tara's blog to check out what every one else is creating!


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Thursday, August 2, 2012

Jobs and Organization!

Morning friends!

Who else is kind-of starting to go into panic mode about school starting back?! I'm excited - and I'll be honest, I Love with a capital "L" getting to spend all the time with my love bugs, but I'm a teeeensy bit ready for them to go back to school, too! ;) Mommas, who's with me?!

I still have so many things on my to-do list, so I created this little list to help keep me on track the next 2 weeks! It's nothing too fancy, but it gets the job done! And who doesn't need just ONE more to-do list?!
{click on the picture to snag it in google docs}

Plus, I finished my giveaway burlap signs and they are just too adorable not to show you guys!
 {I just LOVE this "write" one- she plans on hanging it in her writing station}
Now on to complete the tasks on MY to-do list...
Have a fabulous Thursday!

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Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Product Swap!

First and foremost - ya'll, did you watch the women's gymnastics last night?!?! I tried to avoid my yahoo account to keep away from the spoilers! I was a bawling, seriously, bawling on the last floor routine! You couldn't help but feel bad for the Russians, though! So proud of those ladies and their hard work!

Ok, now that I have that out of the way - I am part of a super wonderful group of teacher-bloggers that got together and swapped our TpT products. Jessica from Mrs. Stanford's class set up this wonderful swap! 
MrsStanfordsClass

I was lucky enough to get paired with Caitlin from Kindergarten Smiles!
Kindergarten Smiles

I followed Caitlin's blog and TpT store before I ever began a blog - it is one of my very favorites! She has wonderful TpT products and is always so bright and cheery in her writing!

I got to browse through her TpT store and pick the product of my choice! We broke the rules a teeeensy bit and swapped 2 products!

The first product I'm reviewing is her Apples: Math, Literacy, and More!
Ya'll - this packet is PACKED with wonderful activities including graphic organizers about apples, 10 literacy stations complete with differentiated recording sheets, 6 math stations, AND a super cute Johnny Appleseed craftivity and fact book! I won't need anything else to teach my apple unit! :)))

This packet is kid-tested and approved! I recruited Ella to try out a cut-and paste labeling sheet included in Caitlin's packet. She loved it! She's obviously a little young (4) for the packet, but with my help she was ALL over this!
Here are just a few of the activities included:
Apple Tree Missing Letter station
 Sounding out CVC words with differentiated sheets.
Johnny Appleseed Scramble - scrambled sight words

And here are a few of the Math stations included:
 Counting seeds - 1:1 correspondence
Ten frames "room search" to be hung up around the room and counted. My kids ADORE this kind of activity - can't wait to use it!

And... the SUPER cute Johnny Appleseed craft with fact book!
So go check her packet out! I can't wait to put it in my station tubs during our apple unit!

Now, the second packet I reviewed is her "Awesome Words for Inspiring Authors" thematic word walls. Ya'll - I have been wanting these for forever! They were actually on my wishlist for back to school! I am SO stinkin' excited to put them in my {NEW!} writing center this year! Included in the packet are over 25 themed word walls made just for file folders! No more "how do you spell so and so.." 


What I love the most is her cover sheets are in both color and black and white - this way your kids can create their own little word book to refer to during writing! 

These are going to be a HUGE asset to writing this year! I'm so excited to use them!!
If you are interested (you should be!!) go check them out here!

Don't forget to go by Caitlin's blog and check out her review of my products! :))
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