Monday, July 23, 2012

Making Progress and To Do List Linky Party

These past 2 weeks have been crazy busy with getting my classroom ready. Those little kiddos will be back August 20th!! AAAAHHHH!! There is still SO much to do before I am ready!

The first order of business was to get my classroom library in my computer system and reorganized. I did not know how big of a task that was going to be with over 700 books. It's finally D-O-N-E, done! I wanted to make sure that the books were separate by genres and have a good check-out system. Now that everything is online, I think it will be much easier to keep track of those books.

There were just SO many books to organize! Ha ha.

Here it is finished. Well, almost. I still have to put down the rug and clean it, but the hardest part is finished.

I was able to get most of my classroom put back together without any problems. Of course, I still have some work to do to make it perfect.
This is view from my desk. Luckily my desk doesn't take up much room since it's like a small personal student desk for a bedroom. I am still wanting to fix the cabinets that have the focus walls. Hhhmmm, that's going to take some thinking.

This is from my door. 

This is from the front of the classroom. You see that huge bulletin board? I found this simple phrase to put up since I am NOT creative or crafty.

These are my new station baskets. One set for the morning RTI time, another for reading, and the last set is for math workshop. Yay! I'm just proud that it's colorful and fun ;)

Before I left school for the day, I sat down and made my to-do list, and joined the "To Do List Linky Party" by The Fabulous 4th Grade Froggies. Man is it long!! I am hoping to get most/all of these things done this week so I can make another one to tackle. 

On another note, I am wondering if the people at Target, Walmart, and the various Dollar Trees are starting to recognize me. I am finding that I am making SEVERAL trips each week to all of these stores. I just don't want to miss out on the great deals for all of the nifty/cheap school supplies. Each time I go there is always something new that I am able to use. I am going to have to start telling my friends that I am not able to out for lunch because I am broke from all of this shopping that I have been doing lately! What is sad that none of it has been for me!! 

This coming year is going to fabulous though...I just know it. I might be a little rocky since HALF (not lying!!) of my grade level will be starting their maternity leave at the beginning of this year. Another one is just coming back from maternity leave, ha ha (you don't want to drink the water at my school :p)!!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Crockpot = Teacher's Best Friend

With school starting soon (August 13th for teachers and the 20th for students), I thought that I might share a great blog find.

A Year of Slow Cooking is God sent!! 

Just click on the picture below to go to her blog. You won't regret it!!

Stephanie O'Dea uses her crockpot everyday to create amazing meals! They are more than your traditional crockpot recipes too. Stephanie gives her and her family's verdict on each dish too. We all know that teachers are at school for the most insane hours everyday. Who wants to go home and spend the rest of their evening cooking?! I know that I don't have the energy after being at work for around 12 hours!!

If you are gluten intolerant, like me, all of her recipes are gluten free since her daughter has Celiacs. 

Saturday, July 14, 2012

A Blog Award! YAY!!

I know...I know...I am breaking the blogging rules with 2 posts in one day, but......

I am SO excited and grateful that I have been given a blog award! Thank you Stacey at 3rd Grade Times for this lovely Versatile Blog Award. 

The rules for this award are as follows:
1. Thank the blogger who nominated you
2. Include a link to their site
3. Include the award image in your post
4. Give 7 random facts about yourself
5. Nominate 15 other bloggers for the award
6. When nominating, include a link to their site
7. Let other bloggers know they've been nominated

Sense I am suppose to give 7 random facts about it goes....

1. My favorite song to play on my flute is The Super Mario Brothers Theme Song
2. I am gluten intolerant
3. I can't help getting to work at 5:30 AM to get work's so quite at the school ;)
4. Almost done with grad school (YAY!!! Can't wait!!!)
5. I am a horrible speller
6. Moving in with my mother soon to save money for a house
7. In 2 years I am going to walk the Camino Santigo (A  LONG pilgrimage through France and Spain)

Now those that I am giving the award to (these are just few for right now)....

Mrs. Parker at Learning with Mrs. Parker

School's Coming Back

Well, I have spent my summer doing absolutely nothing!! There was the occasional reading of professional development books and planning for the next year, but I really did nothing. This makes me SO glad that I am able to get back into my classroom to start setting up for next year!! Wahoo!!

The first order of business was to set up the desks. With our new math program it is essential that my students are able to work in pairs or in groups from the moment they walk into my door. Usually I have my kids in rows and slowly move them into groups once they have the procedures down pact. However, I am going to start off in pairs. This seems like the best way to have control but allow the kiddos their group math time.

The next project was/is the biggest of classroom library. I am always trying the think of ways to organize my library and have a good checkout system that would prevent the "misplacement" of books over the year. After lots of blog stalking, I found a great solution. It's a internet based library catalog system. The kiddos checkout their books from the website anytime they find the perfect book for themselves. The best part is, I get to control the number of books they checkout and how long they can keep them! It gives email notifications when books are overdue. Now, I will ALWAYS know who has what and am able to write notes home for those little ones that are forgetful. (You all need to check it It took me 3 days to get all my books in the system (732 books to be exact, what?!?!), but I got it done and I know that it's going to be worth it.

Now the only thing left to do is to categorize these books into genre basics and label the books themselves. This might take a while, but I am hoping to get it done in a couple of days (This might mean a little help from friends and family, hehehe). I will post a picture once I am done.

These projects are only the beginning of what I have to do to be ready for my students. You all know. Putting things up in the classroom, going to MANY stores to get what I need, finishing the class blog, and LOTS of planning. This means lots of late hours at the school to be ready. Thankfully I work with a great team when it comes to planning and being ready with the math curriculum.

 I am very excited about the new group of students that I am going to get. I can't wait to find out who they are!! I am ready to put to use all those great things that I have about to better impact my students and to give them a better education. Nothing is better when I am able to see growth in a student (well rounded growth to be precise).

I would love to know what the first thing you are going to do to get ready for this coming school year!