Sunday, July 26, 2015

{Week 1} BTS in a FLASH! Teacher Faves

    I know, I know... we shouldn't be talking about BTS15 when we are in the midst of summer, but after the AMAZING TpT Conference in Vegas AND all the amazing BTS items at Target (can I get an Amen), I can't help but have it a little on my mind.  
I am so thrilled to be apart of this amazing 4 week blog hop that shares snapshots inspired to all things Back to School. This week we are showcasing Teacher Faves! 

So without further ado, her are my top 5 Teacher Faves:

1) Ok, this picture has a lot going on in it, but it is all connected.  During the school year there is so much to juggle and Blogging is the first thing to go by the wayside...except... when you have an awesome planner to hold you accountable and keep your ideas organized. This planner is from Mandy's Tips for Teachers and it is a perfect way to get my thoughts out on paper. I LOVE writing things down, and every teacher knows that a teacher has a slight obsession with pens.  For me the Sharpie Fine Point Pens are where it is at. The finer, the better! I love the colors and that they don't bleed through! Pencils and planners go hand in hand. Nobody enjoys whiteout clouding their planning. I love the Papermate Clearpoint Mechanical Pencils.

2) If you haven't seen this, get ready... it will BLOW your mind. Last year my BTS prep was REVOLUTIONIZED by Magnetic Tape. I have 5 GIANT whiteboards in my classroom. I like to turn them into interactive bulletin boards and I can easily do this because of this magical product. No more hot glue and magnets... Just this and scissors ::insert crying emoji here:: I found this at our local SoCal teacher supply store but all you Amazon Prime'rs can grab it here.
3) I am sure most of you have jumped on the Periscope wagon, but if you haven't because you are hesitant to add another thing to your plate... I suggest you do. There are so many amazing tips, tricks and tutorials available to you live from your favorite teacher bloggers.  Ramona Recommends has great tips on incorporating Read Alouds into upper grade classrooms. Rachel Lynette has had a smorgasbord of amazing ideas and Glitter Meets Glue has been hosting a ton of giveaways! It's a great space to connect and see practical things that you can use in your classroom.
4) A Teacher Fave of mine is Positive Reinforcement. I love having a classroom environment that build kids up, supports them and rewards them for positive behaviors. I do this with many things everyday, and one of my favorites it by using Brag Tags. Yes, even upper graders love them! Check out how I use them here.

5) Last, but not least, a total Teacher Fave is the book Wonder. I got a whole class set funded through DonorsChoose last year- with the Julian Chapter- and it was such an amazing experience reading it with my class. They really got great ELA content from it but beyond them the life lessons and personal connections made were just beautiful to see unfold!

We would love to have you link up with us and share your...

Simply drag this picture into powerpoint, or whatever you feel comfortable with, and place images of 1-5 of you Top Teacher Faves and link up below. You can find the flashes here. Link up all week!

An InLinkz Link-up

Be sure to join us next week for Week 2: Curriculum Must Haves! We will be sharing products that we can't live without and there will be some giveaways too!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Back to School in a FLASH {Preview}

It's hard to believe, but we will be back to school in a FLASH! I am excited to team up Jamie from Not So Wimpy Teacher and Courtney from Ramona Recommends to bring you a back to school picture blog linky party. Start taking pictures so that you can be part of the fun! We hate to make you think about back to school so early, but we want you to have plenty of time to take pictures and prepare your blog posts. 

The first week is all about teacher favorites. It can be anything from office supplies, books, snacks, websites, etc. The sky is the limit!

The second week is all about products that you love to use in your classroom. Share a product that you made, a product that you purchased and a product on your wish list.

During the third week, we want to see your classrooms! Show us your decor and how you organize your classroom! Great Time to do a Periscope!!! Thanks Pinkadotselementary for suggesting #BTSperiscopetours. Such a great idea!!!!

The fourth week is all about student engagement. How do you get your students excited to learn? Share your behavior management system, classroom incentives, attention getters, etc.

We will be posting on the Sunday of each week. Our posts will include a linky where you will be able to link your blog posts!

We are looking forward to a picture perfect back to school linky party! #btsflash

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Grab Bag, VOCAB!

Come check out my most recent post on the fabulous iteach4th collaborative blog! I share about 3 ways I teach Vocabulary in my classroom.
 AND there is a Freebie too, so scoot on over!!!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

July Currently

JULY! It is one of my favorite months of the year! It is Summer Break, my wedding anniversary is July 4th, it's my both my daughter and my birthday month AND it's the VEGAS TpT Conference!!! So let's start this month off right with this month's Currently brought to you by one of my bloggy crushes, Farley, who I am crossing my fingers (and toes) to meet in Vegas!

1) Listening: Ok.... If you haven't listened/heard to the Serial Podcast... drop everything and DOWNLOAD it NOW!  It is like Law and Order -plus- This American Life -multiplied by-  It is soooo good. I know I am late on this bandwagon, but I can't wait to listen to alll of it!

2) Loving: Being on break. It hasn't felt like Summer Vacay yet... it feels like Thanksgiving Break.  I have had 9 great days thus far.  It has been awesome relaxing, seeing friends, going to the beach and "sleeping in" (5:30 AM is my internal clock, so 7:00 is like GROSSLY sleeping in!)

3) Thinking:  We are going to be gone the ENTIRE month of July. We even rented our house to a good friend for the month.  So, we need to pack for a month.  Family of 4... 3 Vacations in a month...WHEwwww. #nightmare.

4) Wanting: Someone to pack for me... see #3

5) Needing: To Figure out my Vegas Schedule. I need to get this planned out. It's my first time... I am nervous... I am excited.... there are so many meet ups.... there are so many people!!! AHH!!!! Can't wait!

6) All Star: I am an all star multi tasker. I am great at juggling responsibilities, planning, arranging, problem solving and getting stuff DONE. It is one of my favorite qualities about myself.

Can't wait to see you all in Vegas, to learn so much and to read your Currently's along the way!

Monday, June 29, 2015

TpT Seller Challenge {Week 3}: Make your Masterpiece!

I have a list of product ideas that is PAGES long.  I have about 5 products that I have started but haven't finished but I FINALLY finished one that I started in April! My hope was to finish it for Earth Day, but all of the excitement of life made that impossible. I am excited to showcase my new product, Arguing for the Earth,  for this weeks TpT Seller Challenge.
Persuasive writing is one of my FAVORITE genres to teach.  It can be hard for kids, and I have noticed that it is a real struggle particularly for my second language learners. I made sure to include a lot of structured support in this set using Thinking Maps to help them organize their ideas along the way!

     The prompt asks the students to argue on behalf of the Earth and to try and convince their school to make easy changes. Before the writing process begins, they need to investigate the 3Rs: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. My students understand recycling but they get stuck on the last two.  I added a little research piece to this by including 5 QR codes that explain the 3Rs with examples.  Brainpop has some awesome resources that go along with this here. The students can take notes on the circle maps about HOW and WHY taking care of the environment is important.

    After they gather sufficient information, they can start constructing their arguments.  I have them use a one sided flow map to evaluate Cause and Effect Relationships.  To differentiate I provided some arguments for struggling writers as well as some sentence stems to help.  These are especially helpful for Second Language Learners.
      Once the research and planning are done, drafting beings!  I created a Hook mini poster for their Interactive Notebooks which goes over the different ways they can start their essay.  The Flee map has some helpful hints for them as they get their ideas out and lastly there is a Self Editing Checklist which reminds them to go over their work before they turn it in.

     I can't wait to use Arguing for the Earth this year with my new set of kiddos! It has enough support for the more hesitant writers and it allows them to research, use facts, and make helpful suggestions to their peers.  

Monday, June 22, 2015

{Week 2} TpT Seller Challenge: Dare to Dream

Last week I signed up to be part of the TpT Seller Challenge hosted by Sparkling in Second, The Peppy Zesty Teacherista, Teach Create Motivate and Third in Hollywood created.

Today I am linking up for the second week of the TpT Seller Challenge that the fab 4 have created.  This week's topic is Dare to Dream...

This past Friday was our last day, so I am officially on Summer Vacation!  One of the things I value about the summer time is having the ability to reflect and relax.  This week's challenge is perfect for reflecting on some of the goals I have for TpT.  When I started this little side business of mine, I was incredibly motivated and encouraged by one of my real life best friends Michelle from Apples and ABCs.  Now that I am more involved in the blogging community, I am really  inspired to grow my business more. 

Family: I LOVE teaching and believe it is my calling to work in inner-city schools. In an ideal world, I would love to be able to work 3 days and stay home with my own littles 2 days a week.  I am lucky to have amazing friends and in-laws who help take care of my kids while I am working, but I would love to be more present with them. I am almost greedy over my time with them. 

Home: We bought a house 2 years ago and LOVE it.It is quaint, in a wonderful neighborhood and we have a lot of friends nearby.  Our house is almost 100 years old, so there are A LOT of things we need to do to it maintenance wise. We also want to make it more our own and that costs money.  A BIG dream of mine is to add onto our house and update the kitchen with my TpT income.

Grow:  I have had a lot of amazing opportunities come up and met a lot of great people through blogging and TpT. I want to grow more and make more connections. This is my first time attending the Vegas conference and I cannot wait to learn.  I am so excited but EXTREMELY nervous at the same time.  I tend to be a little shy at first, but I know I need to really put myself out there to make these connections and to grow more.  So, if you see the shy, little redhead in at the TpT conference, come up and say hello! You will make my day! 

I am excited to see what dreams you all have! Until next time.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

TpT Seller Challenge: Week #1 Makeover Maddness

I am so excited to be apart of the TpT Seller Challenge that Sparkling in Second, Peppy Zesty Teacherista, Teach Create Motivate and Third in Hollywood have started.  Week #1's challenge is to makeover a product. I chose one of my top sellers, and my first product, my An Idiom a Day.  (Find out how you can win this below!)
I don't know why, but I didn't have a cover for this product... How embarrassing ((putting head in sand now)).  I found these pig clipart that went perfectly with my product. 

I also straightened up the lines on the idiom pages and chose bigger and clearer fonts.
I have been meaning to do this with many more of my older products. I am so grateful that this challenge has inspired me edit, enhance and update. Since I am so proud of the updated product I will give one of these away.  Simply leave me a comment with something you need to do this summer as well as your email address!