Sunday, June 30, 2013


I finally did it...I joined the Bloglovin world.  I have to say that I actually kind of like the reader.  It is pretty friendly on my phone, which I really like.  Using the Google app was not super friendly.  The hardest part of joining Bloglovin was getting a button for my blog.  Finally figured that out :)

There's lots of people who haven't switched over to Bloglovin, so be sure to do that :)


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Monday, June 17, 2013

Apple A Day Linky


My classroom is not the most decorated place in the entire world...its colorful and bright, but themes--who knew about that all of that existed???  I didn't.  I guess that's the difference between middle school and elementary school.  Gives me plenty to think about this summer.  I think my theme for next year is "Rainbow Explosion."  We'll see how good/bad that turns out.

Today I am linking up with The Applicious Teacher for a summer long linky party :)

Anyways, I have been looking forward to this week's topic all week long.  The number one classroom management strategy that I have is my number system.  Before the Open House night, I number all of my students and post my rosters on the back wall with their number beside it.  Each desk has a number on it, like the ones below. 
Creative Teaching Press Calendars; Confetti Calendar Days
I laminate the whole set, even the extra ones (just in case one number goes MIA I have a replacement that looks similar to the others...OCD coming out in me).
I use masking tape to make a loop and then tape the number to the desk.  This tape doesn't leave any residue and peels of nicely.  I replace the tape about every two weeks because the tape loses its stickiness for various reasons (kid repositioning the numbers, etc.).
I use the numbers all over the place in my classroom.  All of the calculators have a number on the back.  Students get their calculator from their pocket on the chart and put their calculator back in that same spot when finished.  This way, I can keep track and see easily when a calculator is missing and can hunt it down by knowing who used it last.
I use numbers when I call on students, taking attendance...and I just found a new idea from Sticky Notes & Glitter...Making a BINGO chart with their numbers and using it as positive reinforcement. 
Oh I'm looking forward to this year :)

Made it Monday

I am linking up with 4th Grade Frolics for Made it Monday :) 

I saw this on Pinterest a while back.

I knew that it needed to be on our "Summer Bucket List."
I have twin four year olds, so everything is amazingly wonderful for them.  Where they are so little everything that we do is bound to bring lots of joy.

So, Saturday morning we made our TP bird feeders.

Our supplies: birdseed, TP rolls, and peanut butter.  Missing: pipe cleaners (to attach to fence).

Smearing on PB

Ally rolling it up

Emma patting her seed on

Finished product

Hanging on the fence
This was SUPER easy and fun for the girls to do.  And the birds love it too :)

Friday, June 14, 2013

Calendar Math

I have scoured the web, pinterest and blog-stalked to learn more about Calendar Math.  It is an elementary idea, so I needed some  inspiration to implement this into my 6th grade math class.  I found that inspiration at Teaching in Room 6.  I linked that to all of the posts she has written on Calendar Math.  I teach resource math classes and intervention math classes, so the most important thing my students need is repetition.  They need more repetition to learn and master a concept than most.  So, what better way to do this than start with Calendar Math.  Below is a preview.  The link to download from Google Docs is underneath of that.

How am I going to incorporate Calendar Math into my day?  I teach three sections of resource math class to students with disabilities, so I am going to have to structure BIG time at the beginning of the year...then, hopefully (fingers crossed) won't have to do so much intentional instruction on how to fill it out.  I am thinking that next year I am going to have some center-like stations going on to reinforce our big ideas for the week.  Calendar Math is going to be one of those centers.  With only 10 kids per class, I'm thinking that I'll be able to rotate through three centers per day.  I have about 50 minutes per block, so this might be a stretch...but, we'll see

1--Calendar Math
2--Computer Work:  I have set of laptops available to me on a daily basis (LUCKY) because I am teaching the resource classes.  Additionally, my school has purchased licenses for all 330 sixth graders to have a log-in for (ah-ma-zing).  So, this center is going to be for practicing the skills that we've worked on that week or previously.
3--Games/Activities to reinforce concepts from whole-group instruction time.

Hope you enjoy my first upload :)  Leave some feedback about it.


Classroom Freebies Manic Monday
Happy Friday!

Technology Galore

All in one morning, I have learned how to turn off the CAPTCHA thing on my comments (success) and learned about Google Docs (EASY peasy!).  I don't make clip art or borders or fonts or cutesy little pages, but I do make LOTS of my own documents for my class.  I can NEVER find what I actually need/want in an already-made worksheet.  Now, with finding out how easy Google Docs is, I can share my stuff.  Looking forward to sharing :)

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Question about :)

When I leave comments for someone on their posts, I can't get my blog address to come up as a hot link. I can type it in, but it not a link. On other people's comments, they have a link to their blog, which comes in handy when you want to follow the blogs of people who have left comments.  Anyone have any suggestions on how I can do this???


Made it Monday/Apple A Day

This is my first time linking up with 4th Grade Frolics "Made it Monday" linky party!  I know its now Tuesday, but I had oh-so-wonderful PD all day on Monday.  After hearing about data notebooks, being a focus school (not a good thing), Program Review, and a new state-wide lesson plan initiative, I was a little zonked!

And because this post has to do with classroom decoration, I'm also linking up with The Applicious Teacher 
 photo Slide1_zps0f4262e5.jpg

My made it Monday is seven years old, but when I started unpacking my classroom yesterday, I knew I had to share! 

I found this project in the back of  "Glamour" magazine right before I started teaching in 2006.  LOVE IT!  It is a tension rod with ribbon tied onto it.  I have a large window that needed some jazzing up.  This picture doesn't do it justice, but it truly is a show-stopper in my room.  The kids LOVE it (and touching it, which drives me crazy).  It is unique and fun :)

I am OCD (majorly), so there is a pattern of colors.  It takes a lot of ribbon, so you'll definitely need to measure the height of your window and multiply it by a lot (I know...not very helpful).  I just tied on each piece of ribbon with a double knot and then it was done. 

For the tension rod, you definitely need to measure the width of your window to buy one big (or small) enough.  If you have a large tension rod like mine that uses a screw to keep the tension, then you wont be able to slide the ribbons over the screw if you tie the ribbons tightly...word of advice: don't tie the ribbons super tight against the rod.  Then, you don't have this problem. 

I didn't get to use my ribbon rod last year because I had no windows.  When I saw this beauty yesterday, I was ecstatic about getting to use it again :)

Now a shameless plug, PLEASE follow my page.  I have less than 10 followers, and my confidence needs a boost :)

Have a great Tuesday!


Saturday, June 8, 2013

Favorite things Linky

Linking up with Across the Hall In 2nd for a few of my favorite things.  After reading about her love for caramel macchiato coffee, I just HAD to contribute!
Favorite Graphic

1.  For school, my absolute favorite bag is made by Land's End
I am starting my 8th year this fall, and I am still on my 2nd bag.  This is the medium bag, and it is wonderful!  Pockets inside (and one out) are a plus. 

2.  I LOVE sleep.  My nights, in fact, I think I am asleep before my head hits the pillow.

Organziation Linky--Hanging folders!

I am linking up with the girls at Ladybug Teacher Files and Fun in 4b to join in the organization linky party.  I have thought hard about what I could possibly contribute and decided that my paper organizer thingy-majig is probably the thing that keeps me most organized after grading papers.
I have a Pendaflex hanging folder that is shown in the picture below (this is not mine...mine is in a box). 

I designate one period per folder...since I teach 6 periods, this is PERFECT.  At my school, we have Thursday Folders.  On Thursdays, these Thursday Folders are given to students in 1st period and they carry them around all day to all of their classes.  Whenever teachers have papers to pass out, they save them all until Thursday to be sent home in the...yes, you guessed it, Thursday Folders. 

When I finish grading papers, I just throw them in that period's folder and wait til Thursday.  If someone is absent on Thursday to receive their graded work, it just goes back in the folder and waits til next week. 

This totally helps me keep my desk de-cluttered and keeps me from 'accidentally' throwing away the kiddos papers.

Happy Saturday!!!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Place Value Understanding

I was reading through my list of updated blogs from the last couple of days.  On Classroom Freebies, there was a link to the Math Coach's Corner blog that is A-MA-ZING!!!!  You should totally check it out!  Tons of free resources that are getting kids to think...LOVE!

Anyways, while I was there, I came across this post about place value, and how it transitions through elementary school to feed into middle school.  Place-value is critical for students' understanding of more difficult concepts, yet so many kids are lacking in their understanding of place-value. 

Check it out :)

Monday, June 3, 2013 June

I learned a lot on my first link...try not to judge.  Now, on to my second linky with Oh' Boy 4th Grade for this month's Currently here  :)

Listening--LOVE LOVE  LOVE Pink's new song

Loving--I've been on summer vacation already for over a week.  I love the lazy days with my kids, sleeping in, staying up late with them, and not having to worry about all of my I's being dotted and T's being crossed for the next day.  Who cares if laundry is finished today?  I can do it tomorrow...there's no school :)

Thinking--WOWZER I cannot believe what time it is.  Good thing its summer vacation and I can take a nap tomorrow.

Wanting--maybe this is more needing.  I ran out of coffee creamer on the last day of school (good timing, I know).  Since I don't need a coffee IV during the summer, I haven't been in a hurry to get more.  But I do miss it...going to the grocery tomorrow.

Needing--though it is summer vacation and laundry can be done tomorrow, I need socks.  Laundry MUST be done tomorrow.

Vacay essentials--sunscreen (especially for my 4 year olds...not wanting to experience sunburns on them), snacks (for them and momma), and iPads for the long ride.

My first linky--Next School Year!!!

I am joining in on my first every linky with Kim at Finding JOY in 6th Grade You can join in here!

I think the day to day life of a teacher, especially at the end, gets so hectic that our lessons can be kind of boring (yes, I said it).  Since finding the blogging word and connecting with teachers (not sure when they have time to blog about their awesome lessons!), I am SOOO excited and motivated for next school year...and I've only been off a week.

Thanks for reading :)

One off To-Do list!

This year, I'm teaching three sections of special education math, as well as RtI math to four sections.  Raise your hand if you've already go the whole year planned out.  *Raises hand*  Oh yeah!  Accomplishment :)  Now to just get lesson plans written and uploaded...

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Lofty Goals

I have found Pinterest and am OBSESSED about a fact anything related to math, teaching, and cutesy.

I teach sixth grade math, and have taught for 6 years.  I have taught 5 years of regular classes, and then this last year taught two periods of resource math classes for special education students, three periods of RTI-Tier 2 classes, and one RTI-Tier 3 class.  Next year will be more resource/intervention classes, which are my absolute FAV!

I have lofty goals for next year:

1) Interactive Student Notebooks--I'm stalking LOTS of blogs and reading tons to learn how to do this in math.  Organization was not my strong point when it came to student work class year.  "Put it in your binder" was my famous last words.

2) Standards-based grading

3) Purposeful homework--going to incorporate spiraling homework.  My resource kiddos need LOTS of repetition before something sinks in.  I have always been horrible about homework...what to assign, how to check it, points to give it, what to do when they don't do it...the list goes on and on.

4) Daily Number--my sixth graders do not typically have the strongest number sense, so I am hoping with having a daily number we can start to change some of that.

5) BLOG--not sure how so many awesome teachers have time to blog and/or making things for Teacher Pay Teachers, but I'm at least going to do/try the blog thing.