Wednesday, July 29, 2015

End of Summer Organizing Frenzy

It is a couple of days before I am allowed to go back in my class and I am going crazy! What am I doing to make my first week productive? Planning!! I am thinking about what I can do now to make my life in just a couple of weeks organized, and easier! So here are just a couple of things that I have started to work on now.

Okay so confession, this is not my desk. This is actually a picture from when I went with my husband on his business trip. It is cleaner than my current situation, which is on the table in the living room. I wanted to show this one because it shows my planning calendar. Yes, this is just my calendar, not my weekly lesson plans. So I will explain it a little bit. The binder includes my calendar and pacing guides for all my content areas. On my computer (the bottom right is just a picture of what my calendar looks like) is my calendar. I am planned already til the end of October. Every subject is planned out and color coded (yes I really am OCD), and then the blue line is just notes or things to remember (like end of the nine weeks, assessments that need to completed, etc).

This is my trusty planner. This was a must have after a conference I was at last week. I was finding out about all kind of things that I was scheduled to attend and things that I need to do. When I went to put it into my calendar I realized that July was the last month in the planner... so I stopped at Target and found one that I like. I love it!!

The last thing that I am working on to help me be organized for next week is my trusty to do list. I have one for things I can do at home and one for things I can do when I get in my classroom. These are running documents, so when I am thinking about something that I need to do I go find my notebook and add to it. It is something that I am going to continue to try and work on through the school year.

I am so excited to have this school year get started. I hoped you enjoyed reading this and you were able to get ideas of what you can do before school starts back. Happy Teaching!!!

Saturday, January 31, 2015

One Hundred Days Done

First, I am so excited that it is the weekend. Every year I always forget how exhausting the 100th day of school is, and it was in the middle of the week, which did not help. My students had an awesome day filled with lots of memories and a BIG lightbulb moment! Part of my morning routine is calendar time and morning meeting. This is what it looks like:
As you can see I am not in the picture, my students lead the first part of the meeting. My teacher assistant goes over classroom rules, days of the week, calendar and days in school. (Yes my student is standing on the counter, my kids are always on the counter or tables). During this time I usually do attendance and lunch count. After doing everything  I come back on the hundredth day to my students discussing days in school. For them it seemed like no big deal, they were talking about how the teacher assistant needed to add a hundred stick and take away all of the ten sticks and one sticks (we have never gone over hundreds when discussing place value, we have never really gone over place value). Sometimes I forgot how much they have grown during this school year they were so excited that they figured it out so easily and so was I.

The rest of the day went by so fast, which means I had a total of three pictures from the whole day. Two of which were taken by someone else. Our day was filled with tons of fun activities, I had more activities planned but we ran out of time. Here are the activities that we were able to accomplish:
  1. Hundred day of school hat: Each hat had ten pieces of construction paper, each piece of decorated with things the students accomplished so far (ten of their favorite sight words, students name, letters, numbers, pattern, etc). 
  2. Hundred day snack: Students made a snack with ten different things. Students were able to have ten of each thing. There snack had a total of a hundred things. I used pretzels, mini chocolate chips, M&M's, mini marshmellows, marshmellow ice cream, chex mix, gummi bears, vanilla chocolate chips, fruit loops, and cheerios. Obviously you can choose other things for students to add.
  3. Hundred day necklace: Students counted out a hundred fruit loops and were able to make them into a necklace. My students were really sneaky because I forgot to take away their bowls when they were done counting, so they added more to finish out the necklace (which gave them a lot more than a hundred). 
  4. 100 cup stem activity: Students were able to build with a hundred cups. We read a quick book about building and then I gave each group a hundred cups and they saw who could build the highest structure out of the cups. My kids are super innovative.
  5. Make a hundred with students: As a grade level we got together and had students make a number 100. This was the perfect picture for our yearbook. I am so glad we came up with the idea.
The day went by so fast but we had a great day. My Kindergarten Krew and I got together and made shirts for the day. My students called it my special shirt, and keep asking where they could get one at. Each shirt had a hundred things on it. I had a great hundred day of school. It was long but definitely enjoyable. Here is my awesome Kindergarten Krew!