Saturday, June 10, 2017

Teacher Hack- Adding protective sleeves

First I cannot believe it has been almost a year since my last blog! It was also my hardest Year ever!
New curriculum, a class with an academic span from K to 3 (let's talk differentiation), and a lot of special needs. Individually sweet kids, but they did not always bring out the best in each other.

BUT... enough said...moving on!

So in looking forward I got my new Erin Condren Planner a discount...not realizing it was really last years planner. But that is okay because you have to fill in the calendar dates anyway. Which for me right now is kind of therapeutic.

I did look at a lot of the planner options from many of the TPT'ers, drooled over them, and even bought one. But It was too many choices. I had to decide what pages I wanted, put them in order, get them printed, bound, laminated, etc. I was way overwhelmed.

I like the colorful planners from Erin Condren...its done... I can work with it. But I always want more protective sleeves...and I have the ones in my old planners. So last yearI took the whole thing apart and put it back together with the extra paper protector sleeves. O.M.G.! Very time consuming!

So here is the easy solution.
Get a pair of small scissors with a point, not the small safety school scissors.
Cut perpendicular to the edge, into the small holes along the coils. You may have to push the sleeve up to make the cuts centered. If you cut diagonally I'm not sure it will be as secure.
The cuts make little T's along the edge.
Now you can add them into your new Planner Book or any spiral notebook. Just lay the edge along the coil and using your fingers or a pen tip, push the "T's" down between the coils.
This picture is a 3 section spiral notebook that I use for my reading groups. I added page protectors  to each section as a divider for storing vocabulary words or phonics sounds to practice.
I did this last year and I never had any trouble with it falling out and I just moved them to a new notebook ...good as new.

I hope you find this helpful.  See you around the Palm tree wiggling toes in the sand!

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Back to School Giveaway

It is Back to School Time!
I start Teacher work week on Monday!

But meanwhile I have some give aways to help TWO -
Yes, 2 of my followers get a jump start
for their Back 2 School planning.

I have  a $10.00 Gift certificate to Teachers Pay Teachers to give away!
And you could be the lucky recipient!
I am giving away a product from my store!
Your Choice up to $5.00

Easy to win: 
Follow my store
I would love for you to leave a comment about your favorite Back to School Activity.

Rafflecopter Entry here

Good Luck!

Saturday, August 6, 2016

The Year of Super Heroes! and a freebie!

It is the year of Super Heroes!!
and I have jumped in with my littles on this craze. Over the years I have noticed that while girls are more accepting of any classroom theme, boys are a more indifferent. When I was in 5th grade I began doing a detective/ CSI theme. Boys loved it! So when I moved back to 1st, I decided to keep it. It has not been bad, but I haven't had the enthusiasm that I wanted. Last year, there was a lot of buzz about super heroes and so I tried a few things and YES! both the boys and girls loved it.
So I am changing to Super Heroes. 

 And since I am teach at a Christian School I am a little outside of the popular realm with
"Jesus is my Super Hero", but it works for us.

My 1st purchase was this clock from Hobby Lobby. Problem was that the hands blend in with the POW and I couldn't tell which hand was which. UH-OH! Could be a problem!

Solution: I painted the hands different colors. No picture, its at school.

   Next I have changed my C.L.U.E. Binder to a H.E.R.O. binder. I like this little cutie from Creative Clips.   And course the boys have one too.
Today I finished up my Christian Character Traits Unit based on Galatians 5:22-23 The Fruits of the Spirit. I added a little "Hero" touch to it by referencing the Bible person picked for each trait as a Super Hero. You know David and Goliath...
So of course I included Badges that can be earned when you see someone demonstrating one of the Fruit of the Spirit Traits.
And there is a Badge Book to store them.
And I have also included brag tags! 
or PAT Tags!
 I don't like the name Brag Tags because I think we should be proud of what we accomplish but not brag about it. If we are bragging, we are not being encouraging to those around us. 
I know there is a fine line here, between being proud and bragging,
but while I'm trying to get little 6 and 7 year olds to understand the difference 
I don't think I should reward them with 'Bragging' rights with a BRAG tag.
I give out PAT tags.
Personal Accomplishment Tags
I praise them for their accomplishments and how hard they worked for it.
Everyone claps and they have their moment.
They are beaming, quietly at their seat.

If you are teaching about traits, and are interested in my "PAT" tags I have a freebie to offer you.
I'm going to hopefully figure out how to load it for you.

 It is from this set.

Here is the FREEBIE!
for your little peace makers.


Friday, August 5, 2016

Hi Friends,

I am going crazy with summer almost over and 3 weeks until teacher work week!  I'm looking around at all the things I was going to accomplish this summer! Ha!  I have 3 nephews getting married between June and August and my son is getting married in October. Much to do and lots of showers as well spending my off time with my 2 1/2 yr old granddaughter. It has been a busy summer but I have gotten to a few things on my list, and now its hustle time.
I didn't make it the Teachers pay Teachers' conference this year (BooHoo!) but my school did send me to the I Teach 1st Conference! I had a great time and was able to get geared up and excited for a new year. On Monday I took 2 classes from Tamara from Mrs. Russell's Room on reading and writing.  My big take aways were: Mentor Text is important to use for examples and modeling and Teach with the end in Mind. That made so much sense in being able to build a systematic lesson and breaking it down. I also love her Phonic Assessment units. So helpful for targeting gaps with my new little firsties.
Reagan Tunstall & Me
On Tuesday  and Wednesday, I basically stalked spent time with Reagan Tunstall If you haven't visit her blog, Tunstall's Teaching Tidbits it is a treasure trove of ideas and how to's. Oh, she has been one of my go to people when I need help. I can't even begin to tell you what my BIG take away is. I did come home and organized all my math activities and games, labeled them and put them in monthly boxes. [Well I am done with the 1st two months!]
It was so great meeting and talking with her in person.

While we were there I treated my husband to Reba/Brooks and Dunn's concert.
Of course I could only afford the seat in the rafters. BUT ....
when we showed them our tickets and asked for directions...
They upgraded us to the 2nd tier, right in front of the stage! And NO ONE sat in front of us, which is important when you are short like me. He was so excited! We had such a good time pretending we could afford those seats! LOL Thank you, Lord.
Currently I am in the middle of painting clothes pins. This is crazy!! I usually dye them with food coloring or Ritz dye and they come out bright and nice. I think the clothespins are of less quality this year because I did the same thing I always do, but they came out so brownish. I couldn't even tell the difference between the yellow, orange, and red.
You can sure see the difference
I just couldn't, that's right could N-O-T! use those ugly ones. 
So I am painting all them with acrylic paint.

Last but not least. Thank you to all of you that found my little shop, 
 left a comment or even nicer, 
made a purchase.
 I have been updating my phonic "Teaches the Difference" series. Make sure you check and get the updates. I'm working on my Short Vowels and Long Vowels Unit, which I took away for awhile.
If you purchased it way back when, you will be able to download it with all new stuff.
It is worth waiting for. 
Stay tuned. and hang onto summer while you can!

Saturday, February 27, 2016

A Centuplicated Day

We are 100 Days Smarter!

It has been a crazy, busy month! Valentines Day, President's Day, One Hundred's Day, Peer Observations, Book Character Day, and ending with Parent Teacher Conferences! Whew! I'm going to enjoy having 2 "normal" weeks before we start Saint Patrick's Day then Easter. I teach at a Christian school so Easter is a BIGGie and I love it.

I did want to share some of our 100 day.
We started off our busy day with some Elderly visitors, who kept up with all the activities, canes and all! For some reason none of the boys dressed up, but then were very upset that they didn't.

We spent the morning making our hundred day crowns. First we applied 100 jewels stickers to 10 strips of fine velvet construction paper and attached them to band of finest gold sentence strip. I was so glad to have 2 parents show up to help.
Throughout the day we gathered 100 hundred words. It started quite slow. They didn't know where to "get" words. I kept telling them that there words were everywhere, all around the room, that they weren't looking for word cards that I had posted. They asked,
"Can we look on the wall?"  Yes.
"Can we look on the posters?"  Yes.
"Can we look in books?"   YES!
Someone finally said, WOW There are words everywhere!"
(Scary isn't it. I wonder what they've been looking at all year?)

We also counted to 100 by 2's, 5's and 10's. Of course we counted by 1's and then back again. We played Spinning for 100 from 1st Grade Hip Hip Hooray by counting on by 10s.

After lunch we began making our
100-Day Trail Mix. They were allowed to pick 10 items to be placed into their (by handfuls I might add) and taken to their desk. Once at their desk they sorted the items in groups on ten.  All ten items or 10 each went into their bag.

But Don't worry they had plenty left in their bowls to enjoy munching on while we made our 100 year old Portraits.
Once we drew the faces and glued the face and shirt on, Parents helped add on the extra bling and accessories.

It was a great day!

 Only 73 more days to go!
Well that was then...Now it's 66 days left!
Don't just sit there...

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Oh Snap! It's Almost September

 Where did summer go? 
I can't believe it's over and time to trade my flip flops for sensible shoes.
But I am anxious to meet my new group of littles, but when talkin' to them they are anxious in a different way. They are NOT ready to give up their free days and be in school all day.

Here is a fun activity that can sneak in some learning in a fun way.
All you need is
Just ROLL the dice across the floor like bowling balls into a corner or wall
and add the two numbers rolled and mark your answer on the record sheet.The first player to get all the numbers crossed off is the winner.
The game is very action packed with a lot of movement and with the rubber dice it is relatively quiet.

Game can be differentiated by Subtracting or Multiplying the numbers.
Enjoy Bowling 4 Numbers in Your Class for FREE

And then enjoy some other great Beginning of the year Products.

And Have a Wonderful, Stress-free Year!

Friday, August 14, 2015

DIY Project Birthday

Do you do treat bags for birthdays?
How do you store them? This was my dilemma.
I am a Summer Birthday and I always missed out in celebrating my birthday with my class. So I make a big deal about birthdays in my class. Everyone celebrates! And Summer Birthday kids use their half birthdays. (Makes a great teaching lesson on fractions or even showing that counting the months doesn't have to start at January)

At the beginning of the school year I make up all my birthday treats bags and store them in a clear plastic box. And put them in the closet. It would get buried, or forgotten. But it was too ugly to leave out on the shelf. So this year I decided to jazz it up to this!
No, I didn't decorate a plastic tub, but isn't it unsightly?
I started with this box that came from a friend.
It is a cardboard box with a flip lid and has a magnet closure.
I decided it would be great to repurpose it since the green does not fit with my home decor.
I started with some contact paper. 
I happened to have some left over rolls of these complementary colors and designs.
I covered the top with one long piece, 
starting at the bottom, up the back, across the top and a little beyond the front flap.
Key tip #1: Cut either a little less along the edge or make it big enough to fold under.
If you cut it exactly to the edge, the contact paper will eventually begin to pull up.
In the front I went about an inch longer, snipped the curve and folded it under.
For the sides,  I made a long strip and wrapped it around.
Key tip #2: Peel back small amounts at a time and push from the middle out.
If you do end up with a trapped air bubble, 
use a pin to make a small hole and then rub over the bubble.
Using double sticky tape, I applied cut outs, stickers, and ribbon.
I then went back and covered the top with clear contact paper to "laminate" 
the top and protect the stickers.
Finally I added dots and lines of glitter glue and rhinestones for some bling!
Here are my treat bags. 
Contents: A Sticker Badge "It's My Birthday", lots of little stickers, Birthday pencils,
bookmark, and a couple of party favors. (I don't do food due to food allergies).
I think it looks a lot better on my shelf, now.
No more closet hiding.

Contact Paper is so easy to transform anything. 
I have done a complete 5' bookcase with wood grain paper 
and people thought I had stripped it and refinished it. Ha!
Just go slow peeling and don't stretch it.
I hope this encourages you to try contact paper when you are 
repurposing an item.

Last I want to share a Target $1 spot find.
Aren't these the cutest! 
I'm going to use them for my Sharp Pens/Sharpen Pencils holders.
And those clips...well just had to get.

Back to school frenzy!