Friday, September 4, 2015

B2S Go Noodle Style

I love Go Noodle and use it everyday in my classroom.

It has tons of indoor activities to get kids moving and best of all, IT"S FREE!!!! The class can pick an avatar to represent them and then complete workout/dance/partner games in order to watch their avatar grow.  It is great for goal setting, brain breaks, indoor recess (for rainy days, too hot days, or too cold days), and for getting those never ending wiggles out!  I use Go Noodle EVERYDAY in my classroom and YOU should too!
I am giving away25 of  these Awesome headbands over at my collaborative blog called Planning In Paradise

Head over now to enter to win! After you enter, head over to Go Noodle and sign your class up for some indoor action!
Thanks for stopping in!

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Classroom Tools Linky

I am linking up with a fabulous classroom tool that I use in my classroom. Its an AWESOME way to organize your classroom library. In order to see how the system works, I need to tell you a little bit about how my library is used first. My classroom library is made up of two different "shopping areas". The Leveled Library (Our Dinner Books) and the Themed Library (Our Dessert Books). The system in a nutshell is:
1) I give a reading assessment to each kiddo and provide them with a level on a Shopping card.
2) Each kiddo can search for 2 below level books, 2 on level books, 2 above level books, and 1-2 desert books (depending on their level-for example, I am not going to give a level B reader in August 2 desert books because I primarily want them reading the levels on or close to their level)
3) Kiddos shop for books by teams on a different day of the week. (Ex. Team 1 on Monday, Team 2 on Tuesday) This happens during Morning Announcements every morning.
4) Each week as kiddos go to the classroom library to shop, they put their "old" books into a book return bin. Then shop for their "new" books.
5) The classroom helper called the "Librarian" returns all the books to the proper book baskets at the end of each day.

So how did I reorganize to create a better system and clean house? I spread everything out and went through EACH. AND. EXERY. BOOK! (Of course older grades probably don’t have to deal with this but for us younger grades, OH.MY.WORD!!! Talk about a mess!!) Trying to find more different colored dots, stars, shapes stickers to color code books so kiddos know which bin to put them back in.....TOTAL NIGHTMARE!!! As I mentioned above, my books were getting WWWAAAAAYYYYYY out of hand.  This year I noticed that my previous system of writing the levels for the leveled library on the back cover and the themed number for the themed library on the front of each book was confusing (jeez I am even confused just writing that--what in the heck made me think the littles could do it (although they did and it worked for YEARS) but I wanted something less confusing.  Here is a pic of how I organized in the waste of time and effort because the system was too confusing for the kiddos to grasp quickly. I ended up reteaching how to put books away and get new books much to often.
So I have developed a better system to keep the library looking great and help books get to the correctspot. I can show you how to Organize a system like this if you choose to do it.
The organization went like this:
1) I kept my two separate leveled (Dinner) and themed (Dessert) libraries but instead of putting them in two separate spots in the classroom, it is all in one area. With the leveled books going across the top shelf.
2) I developed classroom basket labels for the categories (that I have seen my kiddos go to year after year the most) that has words and pictures describing the books that belong in that basket. I also created matching stickers to place on each book within that basket. So NO MORE searching for matching stickers, just print, cut, stick and go!

3) I went through each and every book and separated them into their appropriate category and placed a small sticker in the upper right hand corner.  On this sticker is a word and a picture of the corresponding book basket that the book should go inside.  There are stickers for the leveled library and the themed/genre library
4) I made sure that each book basket had the corresponding word/picture sticker placed on the front/center of the basket.

Now it looks like this:

SO MUCH BETTER (and cute too!)
I am not going to lie, this process was time consuming but WELL worth it. If you are interested in this system, you can get these Classroom Library Labels for $8.50 in my store.

If you would like to get this product for free, just enter the rafflecopter below!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
I hope your school year gets off to a great start! You know because as of right now, I actually only finished 1 thing from my summer to do list!
Happy organizing!

Sunday, August 2, 2015

What August Brings.....

August brings school supply shopping, excited kiddos and teachers, nervous parents, and BEST OF ALL the site wide TpT sale!  August 3-4 everything in my store is up to 28% off using the code BTS15 at check out.  But if you happen to miss those days, my store will still be on sale for 20% off of everything on August 5th!  I am so excited to snag some of my wish list items!! How about you??

Sunday, July 5, 2015

JuLy is fLy! (As in flying to VEGAS)

I love the month of July for several reasons!! First of all it is my birthday month (yes, I said month b/c I celebrate all month long!) and second, it is the time of year that the annual TPT Conference happens!!! I am so excited to be headed to VEGAS in just a few days.  I can't wait to see some far away blogger buddies and to meet some new ones!
I have noticed some blogs are offering tips for those of us going to Vegas.  They all mention things like: air port travel/safety, what to pack, what to wear, what shows to see, how to print off your notes for the sessions, and which blogger meet ups to attend (which I am totally BUMMED out about a few b/c they were sold out before I could get tickets).  I have one tip that I hadn't seen written or stated that I would like to add to this ongoing list of preparations.
Obtain and Save ALL your receipts!!!!
This is a great opportunity to learn about our craft as teacher entrepreneurs.  You are taking this trip to educate yourself on your business endeavors and meet wonderful people who are interested in the same thing........TEACHING and MOLDING the little minds of our world. Obtain and save those receipts so that you can claim it on your taxes.  After all, we are teachers and we ALL know how little we make. In fact, for many of you it is probably because of TpT that you are even able to take this trip and have this learning opportunity!

In honor of our FABULOUS opportunity to learn and grow, AND because it is my Birthday, I wanted to share this little FREEBIE with you! 
It is a simple back to school activity that will help reinforce your classroom procedures! Just click All About My Class to get it from my store.

If you are joining the conference this year,  I hope my tip helps you out and that you have a WONDERFUL time in VEGAS!!!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Inside Outside Circles

Have you ever heard of this? It is a quick, engaging, and SUPER fun game that your kiddos can play with really topic. It's called Inside/Outside Circles.  For this particular lesson we were learning all about  greater than/ less than math problems using the popular alligator mouth. The first thing you do is split your class in half. Then create one circle (the inside circle) where everyone is facing out and another circle (the outside circle) around the outside of that circle where the kiddos are facing one of the "inside circle" members. The inside circle person comes up with a math problem and writes it on their wipe boards. Then when I say show them, they turn their boards to show the outside circle person the problem.  The outside person then solves the problem. The inside person should then check it, and compliment/coach the outside persons work.  Then when I say rotate the inside circle stays still while the outside circle moves to the right to a NEW inside person.  Then we repeat the process. After awhile, I will switch the roles of the inside/outside people so that everyone gets a chance to make up the problems. This is a great way to develop those higher thinking skills because they are making up the problems themselves. The kiddos always have a blast with this game! Here are some pictures of my kiddos playing:

The BEST thing about this game is that its FREE, HIGHLY ENGAGING, and can go with ANY topic you are studying!  I hope you can use this activity to keep your kiddos interest peeked as you close out your year!
P/S It is important to model this game VERY slowly to begin with as the moving can be confusing at first!

Monday, May 4, 2015

TeAcHeR ApPreCiaTioN Week!

Happy teacher appreciation week!  In honor of YOU I am joining TpT's site wide sale from May 5-May 6. You can get 20% off EVERYTHING in my Kindergarten Boom Boom Store by entering the coupon code: ThankYou
Thanks for being such a valuable person in at least 20 little people's lives!

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Don't Forget Memorial Day!

Each year it seems that the end of the year comes fast.  Between EOY assessments, profile cards, student portfolios, cume folders, teacher observations, PDPs, IEPs, EOY celebrations/graduations, field days, and so much more, I felt that Memorial Day somehow would get lost in the shuffle. I certainly want to celebrate all that my kiddos have achieved so far in their learning careers but I also want them to have gratitude for those men and women who help make it possible.  I started thinking what can we do to honor those soldiers who have laid their lives on the line so that we could be free to help our littles learn.  So each year we read, study, craft, and give for our soldiers. 
We start with reading. I have found several books to read about Memorial Day that are easy for my kiddos to understand. Below are some of my favorites.
Next we study. We spend alot of time researching on line. There are several links on You Tube that are age appropriate on this topic (but be sure to preview them first).  Here is one that is great because it describes the difference between Veterans Day and Memorial Day (if the link didn't work, here is the actual code: You tube also has several of the stories that I mentioned above being read aloud by famous people.  The kiddos always love hearing and seeing stories on the big screen!
Then we craft and write! I always want to get the kiddos perspective on how they would behave if they ran into a solider out in public (or maybe they have one at home). It amazes me that some of them do know how to show respect to a soldier! That's where we talk about the salute and discuss ways to show respect with kindness, words, and actions. Then we begin our crafting fun. Here our some pics of the AWESOME job they did!

The kiddos really learn a lot about Soldiers, Veterans, and Respect in this unit.  If you are interested, you kind find it in my TpT store for only $1.50! Just click Memorial Day!

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