Monday, August 31, 2015

Snap shot of our day!

The best part of being a blogger and reading blogs is (in my opinion) to see what other kids are working on and to show what mine are doing! I love showing everyone my 'Peek at My Week' yesterday. But here is an actual peek into my classroom from today!


I added a new center to our literacy rotation: GeoBoard Letters. Oh my goodness! My kids were in L-O-V-E with them!!

I have been problem solving a couple of different 'issues' in my centers. One was the fact that my other radio was used for about 4 different things through out the day. Now I have just 1 stereo for listening centers AND it comes with 'helper stickers'. Green means go and red means stop. Plus I ordered a Belkin Rockstar Splitter to make life easier too. Now I can have all of my kids listening... and not the whole room :) Grab your own Rockstar here.


I am ready to meet with my first groups tomorrow!! Woot!


We worked on labeling today. This is one of my sweetest little girls. She was brave and sounded out a word all by herself (and it wasn't one of my modeled words!)!


Guided reading table is ready! I'm going to be walking you through my Guided Reading area tomorrow. I can't wait to show you my changes!!


Oh this picture was darker than I thought :(  But If you look closely, we have been working on using our reading strategies. Since I tend to project a lot of our books, I moved them right above our screen to help my students remember them.


See my cute little chevron basket (totally a sewing basket from JoAnn's). All of my sight words are laminated, cut out, and put in ABC order in that cute little box!!


What did your kiddos do today? I'd love to see!



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Sunday, August 30, 2015

A Peek at My Week: Reader's Workshop, 5 Senses, and Goldilocks!!

This week is going to be SO MUCH STINKIN' FUN!! For real y'all! I'm going to be having so, so much with my pumpkins this week!

We have some big plans going on:

Reading/Core Reading: Introducing reader's workshop! How do we read to self, how do we buddy read, how do we read the pictures in a book, Goldilocks and the 3 Bears (retelling, puppets, and sequencing!)

Writing: Sounding out words and writing in our writer's notebooks

Phonics: Letters (H, B, K, F, Q); Sight words ( purple, my, to, brown)

Math: 3-D shapes- sorting 3-D vs. 2-D shapes, sorting 3-D food shapes, building 3-D shapes with marshmallows and toothpicks

Science: 5 Senses- Sorting by touch with texture bags, experiencing all 5 senses with popcorn, mystery guessing bags

I am very, very excited!! My kids are going to have SO much fun learning this week!



This week is going to be a ton of fun to share with all of you! Watch out for pictures galore of these great activities!!


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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Whew! Get it ready!


That whole phrase of "Ain't no teacher tired like back to school tired?". Yep, I hear you friends! Trust me, we all know the feeling. This was my desk the other day:


My student teacher from last year and I are trading pictures of our tables each day. She teaches Pre-K now. I like to think my pictures (from a veteran teacher) help her to feel a bit better about how hers looks. My table gets put back together before I leave for the day. I think if my table looked like this when I left... I'd cry in the mornings!

But I am SUPER excited because I've been training my kids really, really well for the past 2 weeks. This week I started working on adding in literacy centers and math centers. I L-O-V-E that my students are getting the hang of them! Here are some quick snap shots:


Stamping out sight words :)



 Star Fall!! I love having the kids do the letters for literacy and numbers for math :)


 Write the room. This one took a bit of practice first.



Handwriting practice with zig-zags, waves, and lines.

Matching shapes and number formation.


 Number puzzles

Missing number pieces.


Colorful numbers and shapes


A snap shot of all :) They are loving them!!


I am so excited to keep going with them AND to add guided reading starting next week!!




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Wednesday, August 19, 2015

How do you make it all fit?


Wife.Mom. Blogger. Teacher. How do we make it all fit? Oh man, I won't lie. It's hard sometimes. As my children are getting older, there are more activities to do and places to be. Sometimes its all about the forethought to be honest.

For example, today I knew we had dance... so it's all in the planning. I had my to do list ready to go:
 -swing by the Post Office to mail a package
-make it to dance class on time
-update my assessment files from today
-have my son do homework

So glad to have gotten it all done! Definitely with a little forethought it is totally possible. Of course there are always little slip ups.... like the fact that my son forgot his AR book at school. So after he did his homework, he got to 'play school' a little bit longer :)


He loved using this Front of the Class from Carson Dellosa! You should definitely check it out for your own kiddos. I like it way better than the Summer Bridge series that I've used before. They are way to hard, way to fast. The Carson Dellosa one eases into the new material much better. They are by grade level so it's great for all year long, a summer preview, or a summer review! (I participate in the Brand Ambassador Program for Carson-Dellosa and have received this product for free to review)


I'm still a huge fan of the videos that they put together too. Especially this one since you can see inside the product:



I'd love to hear if you've ever used this book before or if you'd like to! I definitely want to giveaway one of the 3 products that I reviewed for Carson-Dellosa. Leave a comment and tell me which one you'd like to win:

-Front of the Class workbook



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Friday, August 14, 2015

Recording Success All Year Long!!

One of the hardest things in Kindergarten is all the 1:1 assessing. Carson-Dellosa sent this great assessment recording book that I've been eyeing for awhile.  (I participate in the Brand Ambassador Program for Carson-Dellosa and have received this product for free to review.) I didn't have a use for it last year since Science and Social Studies aren't Common Core (yet).



The assessment book is broken down into subjects and concepts which makes it really easy to use!



I love how you have the vertical alignment for grade levels above and below for each concept. Plus you have room to be able to actually write in them. I have been listing the assessment that I used for each item so I will remember next year.

If I could add anything to it, it would be tabs. I ended up printing stickers with my students names so I didn't have to write in each section. I also added tabs to the outside just for quick reference to each section.

If you want to grab your own, make sure to watch the Carson-Dellosa Facebook page. They have announcements for Deals of the Day all the time!!

How do you keep up with all of your assessment data?

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Thursday, August 13, 2015

Did you see the amazing hidden items?


Earlier this week I shared my classroom reveal and I have to say it turned out awesome! I do really love it :) I'm really, really excited about several of the added bonuses that I received as an ambassador  for Carson-Dellosa. (I participate in the Brand Ambassador Program for Carson-Dellosa and have received this product for free to review.) Check it out:


My Boho Birds collection is perfect for the bright and colorful look in my classroom this year! Here's a closer view of it:


I need to add my title to my header but it's perfect! The kids like the colors and want to know which helper bird they are going to be today!

This set matches perfectly with the Boho Letters too. I really can't say enough about the colors of all of these!


I used mine to create 'Mrs. Gibbons' on my door. They are bright and cheerful. I do wish they had more than one of some letters. I had to snag another letter from a friend to finish my name. But as Pete says," It's all good!"

I also received the Boho border:


While I love the colors, it just didn't seem to 'fit' my room. I've used a couple of the purple pieces in the hallway on a small bulletin board. The other teachers have loved the bright colors and asked me what 'set' or company it was from.

I also love this adorable video that they put together. It totally makes me smile! 


If you want to see their other great new items coming out, check out the Carson-Dellosa Facebook page!! 



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Monday, August 10, 2015

Classroom Reveal!!!

You know how the week of back-to-school kind of overwhelms you? Yep. Good to know others understand!! I wanted to give you a glimpse into my classroom. I'd love to say that these pictures were going to show my classroom set up for Open House.. but I totally am doing well to get them from my classroom clean-ish at the end of the day :)


This is the view from next to the boys' bathroom. I actually have 2 rugs in my room. One that I received from Donor's Choose and one that was left in my classroom as part of the Kindergarten furniture. I am in love with several of the items in this picture: my alphabet (realistic, nonfiction images), the number line (10 frames, word, and digit), and my set of book boxes. So excited!


This is the view behind my door and to the left on my sink area. It has my helpers chart (more coming about that!!), my behavior chart, and my lunch count charts. All in one centralized location :)


This is my room as a view from the door. I feel like it make looked cluttered here.. but it's really more homey in real life. This is my teacher nook with all of my things plus my calendar and another meeting area.


All my math manipulatives, rule poster, and my easel (which is HUGE).


I love my tables :) They are one of my favorite parts of the room. I love the colors, that I can fit 6 people, and how they fit perfectly into this space!


This is a close up of my guided reading space. I will be detailing more about the buckets and how this all runs soon!


Guided reading strategy posters.... and that string of lights isn't supposed to be down that far.. for real folks..


My little area. I have my stuff condensed down to take up the least amount of room possible!


Behind my chalkboard on my table... and the stuff that's left at the end of the 2nd day of Kindergarten!


Collage goodness!!


I am in love with the cheerfulness of my room. I've never been full-force gung-ho about 1 theme. But so long as the classroom is pleasant, welcoming, and cheerful, I call it a win. This is definitely that to me and my students.


Happy 2015-2016 y'all!


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Friday, August 7, 2015

And then the First Day happened...

So, about 2 weeks ago I totally planned out my blog posts for this month and I had a classroom reveal down for today.... and then Back-to-School/First Day happened....with a little bit of mom-paperwork-and-supplies-for-two-kids was thrown in as well.

So instead.. take a look at these awesome rekenreks that I made this summer!


They were really easy to make! Half of the paint sticks were drilled before hand and half were drilled afterwards... it honestly didn't make a difference either way.


These are the measurements:

I really eye balled it mostly but about a thumb width apart.

16 cm apart length wise


When I went back to measure, they were about 1 cm apart.



Afterwards, I simply threaded 5 red and 5 white on each pipe cleaner...




I did get a couple of questions on Facebook when I shared these. This is what the back looks like. I simply twisted the pipe cleaners together, clipped them, and then (later) applied a dab of hot glue to secure it.


I'm looking forward to using them this year. Especially to use them with my large teacher rekenrek!!

I use the book Number Talks to guide these activities:



Several people have commented about where I got this great idea: Kathy Griffin! She has awesome ideas. Make sure to check her out for others:






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