Wednesday, January 11, 2017

New Years Resolution: Reclaim, Empower and Challenge

I've been thinking a lot about the upcoming 2017 school year and how I want to change to make our classroom more engaging. I co-teach in a 2nd grade classroom of about 25 children. I also pull a small group of students out for a resource segment to provide intense interventions in reading and math.
One problem has become more and more prevalent the past 2 years, student engagement. When my co-teacher and I are doing a whole group lesson, many of the students are not paying attention. They are staring off into space, playing with pencils, drawing and writing notes, or reading a book. And it's not just a few students, its the majority! I have stopped instruction to do a attention grabber, got everyone back on track, just to have them drift off into their La La lands a minute later. The bottom line is ....

The students are BORED!!

I've learned from experience the majority of students want to work. They want to work towards a goal. So with this in mind, I am going to change some things.

1. Goal Tracking Charts
We are going to set some reading goals and math goals as soon as we get back to school. The reading goals will be related to Accelerated Reader, Sight Words, and Phonics Decoding. The math goals are with Accelerated Math and Math Facts in a Flash.

2. Daily Task/Job Chart
Giving students a visual always helps them stay more organized. So creating this little To Do chart will help them prioritize what is really important. It will also help me see who is on track and who needs more support. You can find these Job charts at Dollar Tree. I just taped 2 together to have enough room for 24 children.

3. Technology
We have an abundance of technological devices to use in our school and the students LOVE to be on the Ipads/computers. So why not put 2 and 2 together and have them fully engaged (and in charge) of their own learning.  The 1st way I want to do this is by using Kahoot! in the classroom to do informal assessments. 
The 2nd form of new technology is to use to help my students with keyboarding. 

I think I will try to use Google Classrooms but I haven't finished setting that up yet. I will give updates as I learn. :)

Monday, July 21, 2014

Markdown Monday Main Idea 
Thanks to Kelly and Kim's Kindergarten Kreations for hosting Markdown Mondays! Click the picture to check out their site.  

Well I think I'm going to mark down my best seller for this Markdown Monday! It will be 50% off until Friday night!

I made this 15 day unit to help my 2nd graders learn how to identity the main idea and details in short stories. The zip file contains teacher lesson plans and student printouts for 15 days, a Pre and Post test, and a big graphic organizer to display.

I used this in small groups and put the student printouts in page protectors but you can print whole class copies if you like. It's meant as a quick mini-lesson that should only take about 5 - 10 minutes of your small group time.

I hope it helps you and your class as much as it did me!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

High/Low Linky Party

Thanks to A First For Everything for hosting a new linky called...
  High Low Linky

So I will discuss the Highs and Lows of my week. I have a lot of Highs!

1.  My oldest son lost his 1st tooth! It was really special for us. We took lots of pictures and it inspired me to make a FREEBIE

2. I went to my classroom to set it up. Pre-planning is fast approaching and I like to have all the furniture set up before hand. That way I can work on decorating/organizing/preparing for the 1st week. Thanks to my awesome husband for moving all the big furniture for me!!!! He never complains :)

3. My wonderful, generous husband let me make a big purchase today. I am getting a new COLOR PRINTER and LAMINATOR!!!!!!! I am so excited I feel like it's Christmas time :) Now I will be able to make stuff from home.

4. And finally I repainted my dining room, hallway, and living room this week. I've always wanted to do that and we are trying to sell our house so I thought it might help! A friend helped me pick out the color "Grey Ghost" and we put on 2 coats. I cannot find a picture of the dining room before painting started by I have a in progress one and a after.

The only low I can think of is someone said they would be coming to view our house today and never showed up :( It's very discouraging!!!! But I'll try to stay positive.


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Our 1st Loose Tooth!

Our son just had his 1st baby tooth come out tonight! We are so excited!!

Now we have a toothless grin! How cute!!

 He is growing up too fast.
This was such a special occasion for me. I had never thought about how special it was before when my student's lost a tooth in class. So I decided to make something to use this year when we have those special moments!

Here are some cards I will send home.
 Black and White Version for ink saving!

Cute little end of the year activity.

This could be done as individualized or as a whole class graph!

 Write a letter to the Tooth Fairy requesting money. You can tailor this to the level of your students. It could work as an opinion writing or just telling the Fairy about your tooth.

This one is my favorite! You get to give your tooth personality

I'm putting these on my store as a FOREVER FREEBIE. So download anytime. Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Batch Cooking FEVER!!!

Ok I know this is not teaching related. Well maybe it is... see I got into the mood to cook tons of food and freeze it so I would have ready made meals for when we start back to school. That's teaching related right??

Any way, it all started with cooking lots of chicken. I love it when chicken goes on sale (99 cents a lb or lower). It doesn't even matter what part, I like it ALL. So I bought about 27 lbs of chicken and started cooking. It took using the oven twice and slow cooker once.  This picture is all we had left after eating dinner :)
Now I don't follow a recipe to cook chicken. I just throw ingredients together that complement each other. Here's what I made:
  • Garlic Salt Chicken
  • Garlic Olive Oil and Vinegar 
  • Chipotle Chicken
  • Sweet Chicken (brown sugar and soy sauce) (there's only 1 piece left in the picture, it was obviously the favorite!)
  • Plain Chicken (salt and pepper)  
Then I freezer bagged them. 

Next up was Sausage Balls.
  • 3 cups Bisquick
  • 3 cups Shredded Cheese
  • 1 lb of sausage
 Just mix together, make balls, bake at 375 for 18-20 mins.

I made this 6 times!! It produced 3 Gal bags and 3 Qt bags full.

But I wasn't done yet... oh no.


Blueberry and Plain. I lost count and we ate a bunch of them. The picture is what was left for the freezer. I will definitely need to make more!

And finally....
Bell Peppers

We went to the local farmer's market and bought a bushel (the whole box full).  In order to freeze all you have to do is cut them up without the membrane and seeds. If you are careful, you can cut the pieces off without having to scoop out the seeds and membrane.

 Then you proceed to slice them and spread them out on a pan to freeze individually before putting them into freezer bags.

I gave some bell peppers away and used some fresh. The we were able to freeze 12 QT bags full!!!

I also cut up some cabbage but I didn't take any pictures of that. I still need to do more chicken meals and maybe some other things too. If you have any ideas please post below!!!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Maniac Monday FREEBIE!!

Thanks to Classroom Freebies for providing this Freebie linkup! Please go check out the site for more freebies.

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday
I want to share my Spring Math Worksheets Freebie with you!
This file includes  4 worksheets focusing on 2 digit numbers all linked to the Common Core Math standards. Each page is packed with cute graphics for the children to color! I like to let my kiddos color their papers when they finish.

 Skip counting by 5s and 10s & Missing numbers

 10 more/less & 1 more/less &  Counting on

These worksheets will be great number sense practice for anytime of the year even though they have a springy theme. I tried to make them easy enough to be independent work for students in 2nd grade, however they could work as instructional practice for those just learning 2 digit place value.

Check out Spring Math Worksheets for the full product including 3 digit numbers as well!

Markdown Monday! Office Buckle and Gloria 50% off 
Thanks to Kelly and Kim's Kindergarten Kreations for hosting Markdown Mondays! This will be my first link up and I'm really exicited!!!! Click the picture to check out their site. 

 I'm marking down my Officer Buckle and Gloria BUNDLE 50%!! That means it is now $2.25 for all these products! (GREAT SAVINGS)))

I LOVE this story! Below are descriptions of the 3 products in this bundle.  First off I made a Write the Room activity.
(Click the images to link to the products.)
Then I decided to make some practice test questions. My kids really struggle when it comes down to test time. They feel defeated and just bubble something in. I'm hoping, with this practice, they will feel more confident about testing and therefore try a little harder :)
This file contains only comprehension and phonics type questions. I specifically tried to include as many Reading Literacy standards as possible, and to make them closely related to the kinds of questions we have on our end of the nine weeks tests. 
Then I made this one with language and grammar questions. This one has a lot more questions because there are more Language standards and I made 2 questions per standard.

If you like this product, please leave some feedback!!  Thanks!