Saturday, August 16, 2014

Managing Student Work

Hello, Friends! Thank you so much for stopping by my blog today. I am so thrilled and excited to be teaming up with all of these fabulous bloggers to bring to you my second Bright Ideas Post!!

Today I will be sharing about my "Assignment Drop box" and how I use this to manage student Work. I've been trying out different methods for years and this is one that has definitely made life easier on me!

Each student has their own file folder. When assignments are completed, they turn it into their dropbox and move their number over to the 'Work in' side. 

At the ending of each block, I get a pre-made checklist with all of my students' names and I highlight the ones who are not done. The clips go back for the next block. 

Right next to my Assignment Drop Box, I also have student mailboxes. I use these mailboxes to return student work. Since I collect and correct their assignments in number order (from the dropbox), it's really easy to file them back out in number order. I also use their mailbox to distribute supplies/materials that will be needed for the day. 

Thank you again for stopping by today!! If you enjoyed this Bright Idea on managing student work, please consider following me on Facebook or  Instagram for more great ideas and tips!

For even more Bright Ideas from nearly 150 other fantastic bloggers,  be sure to check out the links below!! :) 

Saturday, August 9, 2014

The Elementary Grapevine-Tips & Freebies!

I am so excited and honored to be a part of this new Collaborative Blog

I just 'introduced' myself and shared a tip on how to build strong and positive relationships with students and parents prior to your year starting. I also shared an awesome Freebie so be sure to check it out here

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Activities and Tips for the First Day of School

Where in the world has summer gone?! I swear- this was the fastest summer EVER. Due to the wedding planning, I feel like I literally had about 2 weeks. 

Here in Hawaii we are officially back in session! The students started on Friday and we've been spending lots of time getting to know one another, building positive relationships, and of course, reviewing those procedures! 

Today I'd like to share some tips and favorite activities of mine to start off the school year. 

The first day of school is always a little hectic with parents dropping off their child with bags and bags of supplies and then wanting time to talk with you. It's difficult when there are 10 parents, one teacher and then 28 little ones inside waiting for you to tell them what to do! Because of this, I always have a simple assignment waiting on each child's desk. 

I like to have them work on these All About Me Posters so that later in the day, the students who are a little shy have something to go off when sharing information about themselves. 
You can pick this printable up for free in my TpT Store

Sometimes your supply pile can get out of control and you may have a difficult time knowing what supplies belong to which student if they aren't labeled. A simple fix for this is to use Avery Address Labels.

Prior to students coming, I go ahead and type up 3 labels per student. That way when the parents come and hand you their bags of supplies, just stick a label on the bag. Once everything has calmed down you can sort supplies while students work on their All About Me Posters or at the end of the day. 

One thing that I have definitely learned over the years is that you can't stand in front of the class and talk about all of your routines and procedures all at once. These are kids…they will get distracted. Plus, they've been on summer break for a few months and aren't used to having to sit down nicely and listen to someone else talk. I like to break things up by going over one procedure and then moving on to a game or getting to know you activity.  Sometimes the activities are so simple- like the number pop-up game. I use numbers in my class so I randomly call out numbers and the students need to pop up out of their seats. So simple, yet the kids love it! 

Another fun Getting to know you activity I do in my classroom is with a beach ball. 
I write simple questions in each color section. Questions I use are:
1. Where were you born? 
2. Tell us about all of the people and pets that you live with.
3. What is your favorite meal?
4. Who is your favorite person and why.
5. What do you like to do on the weekend. 

We gather in a circle and students toss the beach ball to someone across from them. When the person catches the ball, they choose the question that their thumbs land on. 

The  next activity that I am about to share is about building a kind and caring classroom community. Students are given time to create a doll that represents themselves. 

Once they're all done students get into groups of about 4-5 students. I have them each pass their dolls around the circle while saying one mean thing to the doll. Each time they pass and say a cruel thing they are directed to tear the doll, crumple the doll, smash it, etc. We go around the circle once. I then have them go around 2-3 times saying kind things to the doll while taping it back up, or smoothing the doll back out. The students are sad as to what their dolls look like. 

We talk  about how words are hurtful and once said, you can't take back the way you made someone feel. Even though nice things were said and apologies were given, the doll could never go back to being the same as it was when we started. Each tiny rip or crumple in the doll is like a hurt feeling that is held onto. This activity is usually a very meaningful lesson for the students. They are much more thoughtful about the things they say and do in and out of the classroom. 

Thats it for today. I will be back later this week with more back to school tips and ideas! 

OH! Before I forget. Tomorrow is the HUGE TPT Back to School Sale!! 

My entire store will be 20% off. Don't forget to use the promo code: BTS14

Friday, August 1, 2014

August Currently

Hey! Linking up with Farley again for her August Currently! 

LISTENING: The hubby watching tv. I had a rough day yesterday so he decided to surprise me and take the night off so he could be there for me if I had a bad first day :) Love him!

LOVING: My students!! Today was the first day and I have a bunch of cutie pie sweethearts!! 

THINKING: I need to write a checklist while all the things that need to be done at school are fresh in my mind before I get too relaxed and forget!! I have a TON of things to do this weekend :/

WANTING: The weather to cool off. It is SOOO HOTT!! 

NEEDING: To catch up. The past 3 days I haven't had any electricity at school. I was there, but couldn't use the computer, I couldn't print anything…nothing. I ended up falling way behind in having my classroom ready and all the important papers that need to go home. 

Alright, well I better head off and catch up! Heading to Jack Johnson's Concert tomorrow as a back to school treat :) 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Monday Made It #2 {Wedding Style}

Hey there! It sure has been awhile since I've last posted…but I have a good reason. I got married!! The hubby and I got married on June 29 and it was literally The Best Day of Our Lives! We had such a great time and truly enjoyed every moment of our wedding day.  Here are some sneak peek photos from our big day! 
Add caption

This is one of my absolute favorites! I love our backdrop!!

Our fabulous wedding party!

The hubs and his boys

My beautiful bridesmaids!

Hope you enjoyed our wedding photos :) As you can probably guess, the entire month of June was dedicated to 'Wedding Stuff'. I haven't even given one thought to school until about last week. I know, Crazy huh..especially for me! Anyways. Today I'll be linking up with Tara over at 4th Grade Frolics for her Monday Made It to share some wedding things I've been creating! 

Up first are our wedding favors. Too often at weddings I see people leaving their favors on the table or eating them before the wedding even started! I wanted our favors to be something our guests could keep, use, and WANT to take home with them. I ended up on deciding to create CDs. We chose a combination of slow, fast, and upbeat songs that defined our relationship and/or reminded us of our earlier days dating ;) 
This is our front cover

This is the back with our seal. You can't tell in the photo but the emblem is all glitter!! I love my glitter ;) And YES, I glued 150 of those onto each CD case. 

Next up are our tip envelopes. I wanted to give a little something special to our vendors so I addd this sweet note with our tips :) 

Next we have my bridesmaid gifts. I purchased Tori Burch slippers for each of them and made personalized Mason Jars for each of them. For those of you who have never experienced Hawai'i in the summer..let me tell you, it is HOT! I didn't want anyone to get dehydrated so we sipped water out of these all day long. Inside of the  Mason Jar I put some band-aids, mints, stain removers, and tissues. 

That's it for today. I'm hoping to link up next week with more school related things. My To-Do list is about a mile long. I've only been into the classroom twice and most of the work was to distribute grade level supplies and then arrange furniture. I still have a ton of work to do and am beginning to stress just a little since we head back to work next week Monday!! Where did the time go?! 

Enjoy the rest of your summer!! 

Monday, June 2, 2014

Monday Made It #1: Lesson Plan Book

Hi Guys! 

I'm linking up with Tara over at 4th Grade Frolics for her very first Monday Made It of the summer!! 

I am so excited. Now that it is summer, I hope to get a lot of things made and this linky always helps!! 

First up on my to-do list was to create my teacher planner for the upcoming school year. 

This is my plan book from last year. 

I wanted a facelift so here is the new one:

 Divider page

Student Information Sheets

Yearly Plans

Monthly planning pages

Weekly lesson planning pages

Note taking pages

As you can tell from both this year and last  years planner..I love bright colors. The best thing about this year's planner is that if you're not into the bright colors, the file actually has 6 different color options. So basically, you're getting 6 different teacher planners for the price of 1!  If you're interested I have it on sale in my TpT shop for the rest of this week….

I am absolutely in love with this years lesson planning book and would love to give away a copy to one of my sweet followers!! Enter using the rafflecopter below :) I will choose a winner next week Monday 6/9. 
Good luck! 

Monday, May 5, 2014

Say What?! May Currently and a Teacher Appreciation Sale!!

Oh me Oh my..May has just snuck up on me! I swear I feel like it was JUST January 1st. 

I've been super swamped lately but couldn't miss the chance to link up with Farley for her May Currently! 

Listening: My pup is snoring! She is laying in bed with me and pooped out from a fun filled day at the park, and family dinner! 

Loving: Sunday Family Dinners! My parents don't live here but every Sunday I get together with my brother, his wife, her 2 sisters, their husbands and their mom. It's always a ton of fun and we always have really  yummy food! Tonight we all got to go shopping in my sis-in law's sister's closet for my bridal shower next weekend ;) She has a HUGE walk in closet that is full of super cute clothing! 
My dog also loves family dinners because she gets to run around in a huge yard and has another puppy friend to play with!

Thinking: That instead of doing this currently…I should really be prepping for my end of year evaluation with my VP this coming Tuesday….

Wanting: More hours in the day. I don't have enough time in a day to get everything done that needs to be done while still getting sleep!  phew. That was a long sentence!

Needing: SLEEP! I haven't been getting much lately :( 

Surprise: I recently found Debbi Watson on TpT. She is a fellow 3rd grade teacher and the author of 3rd Grade Pad. I absolutely love her Area and Perimeter Task Cards!!

They were recently bundled for an extra savings!! Check it out here :) While you're there definitely check out her other products! They are equally amazing and all at great prices!!! ;) 

Speaking of TpT….I'll be putting my store on sale for 20% off during the site wide Teacher Appreciation Sale this Tuesday and Wednesday! 

Don't forget to use the promo code: TPTXO for an extra discount at checkout!! 
I've added quite a bit of new products in the past few months! Go on and check them out here

Have a great week!