Sunday, July 26, 2015

Plan with me Sunday!

Hey there! It is my last day of summer. (Sad face) However I am excited that I get to link up with Keeping up with Miss Harris and Kreative in Kindergarten today for Plan with me Sunday!


Today I am going to show you my MUST HAVES to plan with!
  I have used other planners, but this one really works best for me. I love that I can plan in order of my class. I have used her regular life planner before but today I am going to talk to you about my teacher planner!

Visit the sidebar if you are interested in ten dollars off an Erin Condren Planner! You should also enter this great giveaway to win an Erin Condren planner! That's right, a FREE one!  This is a great giveaway! And don't forget to link up below and share your great planner ideas with us!

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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Back to School Marker Gift

Hey Friends! Just a little freebie to come your way! I made these because I needed a cheap first day freebie for my kiddos! I bought a couple packs of bold markers and washi tape and threw these cute things together! I of course used Astrobrights beautiful turquoise paper! I wanted to save ink so this is a wonderful way to still add color. 

Best Advice Ever

I wanted to link up with Valerie at Georgia Grown Kiddos to share my Best Advice Ever! After teaching for nine years, you always hear "I have some advice for you." Sometimes its wanted (thank you friends) and other times it wasn't. (I am all about honesty, y'all.)

I am super excited about this linky because when I was a first year teacher, I got both kinds of "advice". Most of it was positive, but there are always those that aren't. I am excited to share some of this positiveness to you all (newbies and veterans). Here is the advice I would love to share with you!

Not everything in your classroom has to be created by you to be "pinterest worthy". I know we all love to have those classrooms that are "out of the magazine" cute. I am not going to lie, There are many parts of my classroom that are cute and made by me however, not all parts of the classroom need to be. Here are five ways that your students can share ownership of the classroom.

1.  Create an Alphabet! (or number line, numbers, geometry shape cards, etc) Students LOVE that their art is displayed in the classroom. These alphabet toppers came from the fabulous Amy Lemons at Step into Second Grade!

2. The same can be said for Anchor Charts! They may not be the most beautiful, but the kids LOVE them!

3. Technology: This one all depends on your district and the rules they have with technology. Some only allow certain things, so check just to make sure :) My parents love updates from the students, and when their child is the "tweeter" or "poster" of the day, it oftentimes makes their day. The students also enjoy sharing their learning with their parents.

4. Raise your hand if you are a list maker! That is me, 100%. The last couple years I have kept a class list of things that I need to buy and places that I need to buy them. I keep it in the same place, and students add as I think of them (or as they think of them). They aren't always spelled right but they are the cutest lists you've ever seen! It never fails that when I make a list, I forget something. The kids do not!

5. My last and FAVORITE tip is to incorporate those spontaneous lessons. We are all crunched for time, but these are the lessons that our students remember most. This dead butterfly a student found on our way back from a fire drill. They knew what kind of butterfly it was and the parts and HAD to share with the class. So I let them. We were already off schedule, so why not?!?! Hands down, best part of that day. Those kids did NOT go home and say we had a fire drill, they went home and told their parents all about how "Johnny" found a dead butterfly and all about the butterfly.

What ways do you allow your students to share ownership of the classroom? Share in the comments, I would love to hear them. And if you haven't tried some of these, this is a great time to start! Give up control a little at a time and see what happens :)

Monday, July 20, 2015

New Blogger Shirt

Hello friends!!!

I hope everyone is enjoying the summer! I just had to tell you about the blogger shirt I got at A plus images! It is so cute :) I also talked with a few people that worked there and they are so nice and fast! I couldn't believe it. They also make the most adorable classroom tshirts that I can not wait to get this year for my kids! Head over there now and check them out! 

 Enjoy your summer!

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Primary Peach Meet up

Hello Friends! Summer is sadly coming to a close, but we couldn't end summer without a Primary Peach meet up! I have been waiting to meet these wonderful ladies for such a long time and since I live in south Georgia and most of them live in north Georgia, it is hard to get together. Somehow Chandra and April made it happen and a few of us got together at the Cheesecake Factory (YUM!). We talked for a while about anything and everything. I loved getting to chat about Teachers Pay Teachers with these ladies, especially since I am now working on TPT all the time. 

When we first got there, Chandra gave us these cute jars with the tropical flair pens and chocolate. I mean who wouldn't LOVE that gift?!?! It will definitely be making an appearance on my desk. Well, all of it besides the chocolate, because that won't make it that long ;)

Speaking of my Bloggy Bestie Chandra, here she is :) I just HAD to get a selfie with her. We have been chatting for so long, I was SO happy to "meet" her!

We had the best time. I got to chat with these ladies about TPT, blogging, and just life in school and when you leave teaching. I am not quite ready to go back to school, but I can say these ladies helped get me excited for blogging and TPT "Back to School"! Do you recognize any of these ladies? I bet some of your favorites are in there :)

Take a visit to their blogs and TPT stores. They have some AMAZING posts and products! Stay tuned to the Primary Peach! We have some fun things planned ahead!

Primary Peach Ladies: (Left to Right)
Jessica from Ideas By Jivey
Me :)
Shannon from Bryant's Brain Train

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Working Hard Caddy

Hey guys! I wanted to take some pictures of my new caddy for students working hard. When I see a student that is quiet and focused and really working, I am going to put the "Working Hard" caddy on their desk! I have filled it with "special" things that they can use to edit, write, or cut with. I will probably only use this once or twice a day! It should be a special caddy for students who are showing the best behavior.

I tried to buy what the parents probably wouldn't buy because you know the students want to use them! SO I got colored pencils, and pencils that are colored.

Fancy boy and girl scissors and neon erasers

Twistable crayons and Mr. Sketch stix. (They smell so good!)

GLITTER GLUE! (Bless my heart on this one but I had to.)

And here is my caddy ready to go! I may put the pencils in cups in the section of the caddy to help keep them together!

Do you do this? What items do you put in your caddy?

Treat Binder- Student and Parent organizational binder

Hello Friends!!!! I have finally gotten around to finishing up my T.R.E.A.T. binder for the 2015-2016 school year. Although it may seem early, we start school back on the 27th for teachers. It is coming quickly! I do not have names of my students yet, so that is the last piece of the puzzle (that and lunch and specials times).

So my TREAT binders are organizational binders (or folders) for my students and parents to stay organized and involved in the classroom. It is the one ESSENTIAL item I have to buy and set up for my classroom each year. I searched TPT for a sweets themed packed and never found exactly what I was looking for so TADA! I created something that works for me :) I realize what works for me, doesn't always work for everyone, so I included editable pages in a powerpoint for people who need them.

I included three different covers, chevron, polka dots, and stripes (my favorite).

I always choose to use the stripes as my cover because I just LOVE it! Normally, I am a polka dots girl but there is something that I like about those neat lines :) I go to SAMs and purchase three bundles of 1/2 inch binders to use as my organizational binders.

Then I visit Wal-Mart and get zipper pouches for money, notes and other "Stuff". If you notice, I don't put the "left at home" and "right back to school" stickers in there. My main reason is that neither child nor parent follows this. Also why would I look in the back of the binder for notes from parents, I don't. This way I have the kids put their papers to go home in the back, and important notes from the school in the front.

Next, I head to the Dollar tree for lovely bordered papers. I will run out of these after this year, so I will have to make them myself of find something different. On this paper, I put my information (email, phone, grade), the kids specials schedule by nine weeks, and our lunch time!

I add two clear page protectors with the pages "What is a TREAT binder?" and "Sweet Behavior". These describe our behavior system and how the TREAT binder works. I included both of those in the pack and there are editable pages as well.

On the back of the second page protector, I put the Sweet Behavior reference page. That way when the parents see what color star I put on their behavior chart, they know how the student behaved that day. In the two pocket divider I have the behavior calendar in the front. I have included the 2015-2016 calendars and editable calendars as well, in the packet. These will be updated every year on TPT!

On the last pocket of the divider I have our Reading Log. This is included in the packet as well!

If you are interested in purchasing the packet you can find it here!

Here's to an amazing 2015 -2016 school year! 

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Gifted and Advanced Content Professional Development Session


Hello Friends, I hope everyone had a fabulous Fourth of July Weekend!

I had a few friends on Instagram ask to see what was in my presentation for Gifted and Advanced kiddos so here it is!  I started off with everyone completing a squiggle. I think every grade level can benefit from a squiggle because it shows their creativity! The adults in my class did a great job on their pictures, I loved it!

I started off with a short review of Blooms and Multiple Intelligences. I didn't want to focus on this for a long period of time but it is a great way to differentiate for your students! At the end of the day, the teachers rotated groups and completed some activities. One of those was creating a choice board with blooms. Another was to look at different interest surveys and create their own. I really think that the interest surveys help you get to know your students. It also shows the parents that you are interested in their baby!

Tips from my years of teaching Gifted and Advanced students in my classroom.

These are a few things that I use to increase differentiation for my advanced students. If you have an average class with one or two advanced kids, this will help keep them engaged with less disruptions. 
Give students choices my friends :)

I learned so much from Literature Circles. There is no "right" way to complete literature circles. Fit it to YOUR classroom with the way YOU do things. One year I gave the students jobs, the next I gave them an assignment and leveled the groups with Lexiles and books. Every year our classes are different. We know that the same thing doesn't always work. 

I love math groups, and it is always my kids' favorite time of the day. It is great because a lot of times, Math has to be last in our day. Math groups allow for kids to choose and enjoy their math time! You can read more about my math groups here

Choice boards are great for advanced kids because it gives them choices and the assignment is already there. The great thing about them is that once you make them, you can usually use them again another year.

Project Based learning is so much fun! It is definitely something that I would use in grades K-2. It was more difficult with my firsties that is why I went with Genius Hour!

There are so many resources with Genius Hour! Head over to their website to get started!

Below are some critical thinking strategies for the subjects. Most of these you don't even realize that you do already!

Everyone needs a brain break :) Go Noodle is my favorite!

Technology is great and it always gives students a way to show what they have learned. Products are a great way for advanced students to present to other students as well.

I hope that you grabbed a few tips from the today! I would love to hear what you do for your advanced students. leave me some love and let me hear it!