Monday, October 22, 2012

Check out this great blog!

One of my best friends and fellow co-founder of The Sara Marie School has started the magical adventure of blogging. I've been telling her for a couple of years that she really needs to get on TpT and share her creativity. Joanna is incredibly inspiring and talented. 

One of my favorite homework ideas that Joanna uses is called the "Homework Caterpillar." To download her file and read more about it, go to her blog "Love for Early Learners." 

Brilliant, right? She is definitely a blogger that you'll want to follow. 


Saturday, October 20, 2012

MPM School Supplies

I just received an order from MPM School supplies. Have you heard of them? They sell just about everything you can think of from rugs to glue at a competitive price. Considering I've spent thousands of dollars out of my own pocket over the course of my teaching career, I'm always looking for great bargains (and I know EVERY teacher can relate to that!)

Here are the goodies I got for a little under $25!

I think I'm most excited about the Expo spray. My kinderkids have been asking me everyday to clean their white boards. I have been kindly responding with a sweet smile "I will, don't you worry, Expo spray is on it's way!" but in reality I want to say "I wouldn't have to if you cleaned them the right way with an eraser!!" :)  

I haven't had a chance to really look through the "Word Family Helpers" book (only $4.84!) but anything Mailbox is a great investment. I did look through the "Advantage Phonics" book and it's terrific, so perfect for homework. It has alphabet tracing sheets, beginning, middle, and ending sound pages, and much more. Definitely going to be using this one a lot. 

I have 2 second graders in my class so I was thrilled when I found these blank books. We are currently working on a fiction unit, so they will publish their pieces in these hardcover books. They are so excited. What a great writing motivator!!

Hope you all have a great weekend! 

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

classroom tour!

Well the inevitable happened... first cold of the school year.. lasted almost a week. You know how it goes though, better for a week, then sick for a week, then better, then sick until June ;) My overused phrase of the week has been "hands and fingers away from your nose and mouth." 

I finally took some pictures as I've started to settle into my new classroom. I also found out this week that I have another new girl starting November 1. So happy to see the school and my classroom growing so quickly!

 My room is not huge, but there is plenty of wiggle space. This is also the first time I can't fit my whole room into one shot, so that's a good thing :D My husband is supposed to be painting a Very Hungry Caterpillar mural for me on that empty wall over the library. This isn't an immediate item.. might be a Christmas break project or something. We (more he) have been super busy making our new house a home. 

This is our meeting area. A lovely colleague and close friend of mine set up her meeting area like this a few years ago so this idea was snagged from her. 

Here is a close up of the calendar area. The pattern pieces are made by me and can be found here. We count to the 100th day by using base ten blocks in separate baggies. This introduces them to place value and counting by 10's. It's similar to the straw system that many teachers use, but I like that the base ten blocks is a concrete manipulative that they'll see for many years to come in math. 

We have been reviewing a letter each day and I found this gem. It has a movement for each letter of the alphabet. My kiddos get so excited to find out what they get to do each day. 

Love the nice long window. Dollar store curtains. Dig? As you can see, I'm also continuing with the clip chart. It's worked well in the past and a HUGE motivator for my competitive boys. 

Word wall.. 

This table set is a work in progress. Another husband project.. he wants to finish sanding and then stain it. This is the word work area. 2 students at a time do word work and those 2 wooden things will also be painted and contain their stamps, white boards, letter tracers, magnets, etc. for word work. 

Here is our classroom library. It is organized the same way I've done it in the past. So you can read an old post about my classroom library here

And lastly, this is Pinterest inspired. As the students walk back in the classroom I'll give them a sight word or letter (differentiation at it's finest!) that they have to high five. My colleague and best buddy teaches prek and she saw this on Pinterest too so has the kids high five their names before they come in. 

Hope you enjoyed the sneak peek into my classroom. Stay tuned for a post on literacy. A few of my pumpkins with little alphabet recognition in September began reading level A's this week. LOVVVE the glow on the face when I praise them for being READERS. 

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