Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Teacher Talk Tuesday

Today Blog Hoppin' is encouraging us to share our advice for new teachers. I always laugh when I think back to my first year teaching because I spent time on all the wrong things. My best friend and I call them First Year Stupids (things we did that first year that we would never do now).

*Tell parents cute/funny things that their kids did or said. As a mom, I know how cool my kids are, but when one of their teachers tells me something funny, I know their unique personalities are being appreciated in their classrooms. This goes hand in hand with parent communication. Building a relationship with parents makes it easier when you do have to talk to them about something difficult.

*Read some books just for fun! I'm all about using children's literature to teach all kinds of concepts, but sometimes it is fun to just enjoy books with your class. It shows you value reading, it lets the kids in on who you are as a reader, and it creates such a sense of family in your classroom. We call this, "Start the day with a story." I love when my class develops inside jokes around books we've read. For example, after reading Pete the Cat, you may encourage a kid who is upset to, "keep walking along and singing your song..."

*Always do the Scholastic book order! Or whatever the equivalent is in your area. The books are really cheap and you can usually earn bonus points that you can trade in for more books! I think I've only missed one month of doing the book order in my 13 years of teaching!

*Take lots of pictures and share them with parents! I guess this goes back to the first one, but it makes the parents so excited when they get pictures of their children. I also think it shows that you value each family unit. Many parents just cannot volunteer at school or be present all the time and taking pictures for them is such a huge blessing! Since I'm a teacher, I often cannot be at my son's events- back to school night, first day, etc. My husband goes, but it's just different, so I love when his teachers take the time to take pictures for me!

*Realize that each child is in your room for a very special reason. At least, I believe this. I found a great quote on Pinterest: "Love me when I least deserve it, for that is when I really need it." That's usually true!

What advice would you give a new teacher?

Monday, August 22, 2011

Meet the Teacher

I’m participating in Teacher Week at Blog Hoppin’. We’re supposed to be introducing ourselves today; telling everyone a little more about who we are. I don’t have a picture of myself- I left my camera at school, but here are some facts about me!

*This is my 14th year teaching. I taught first grade for a year, a multi-age 1st/2nd class for three years (with my best friend), third grade for three years, and I’ve been back in first for the last six. Last year, the day before meet the teacher night, I took on a Kinder/1st multi-age class because our numbers were crazy low in 1st and high in kinder. Um, wow…I sure learned a lot! It was fun, but I’m definitely glad to be back teaching just one grade level!

*I have a handyman husband and two kiddos: my son is 7 and my daughter is 4. They have definitely changed who I am as a teacher. My son is in GT, and my daughter is in speech under the special ed umbrella, so I have an interesting take on going through those experiences as a mom and not just a teacher. (An ARD will always feel tough to a mother.)

*I cannot stand to eat seafood. No shrimp, fish, crab, nothing that has ever lived in water. Guh-ross…

*I am a children’s book hoarder. I will take money out of my grocery budget if a new book comes out that I need. I mean, want. Whatever.

*I’m kind of nerdy- I read a lot of professional books about teaching philosophy. My best friend “gets” me and is always up for a scholarly discussion. Over chips and salsa.

*I’ve only been blogging since this summer. July, I think. I was trying to look up how to set up a blog for the kids in my class and I found The First Grade Parade. I was shocked people would share their super ideas! I’ve been hooked ever since! I am so excited to start this year and try out all the fun things I learned blogging and Pinterest stalking!

*Cheetos are awesome.

*I drink way too much coffee.


*I love Jesus.

I think that’s it! Welcome to my blog!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

I'm still here...

I feel like I have fallen off Planet Blog now that school is here! I have such fun ideas to share- I just have to get so much ready for Monday morning! After many, many late nights, Sonic drinks, and yards of laminating, I think I'm pretty close. We had back to school night on Thursday and y'all- these kids are super-cute! I am so excited about Monday morning!

Here's to a wonderful school year for each of you! Classroom pictures (hopefully) coming soon!

Friday, August 12, 2011

WalMart has a Dollar Spot!

I was picking up a few things at WalMart the other day and in the party aisle was this:
It’s pretty much like the dollar spot at Target, but everything is 97 cents! The WalMart guy was putting everything out and we talked about how they finally realized that Target was making a bazillion dollars off of teachers in their dollar spot. He said that it is actually going to be bigger, but they wanted to get it all up before school. There were tons of teacher things: stamp pads, stamps, pencils, little baskets, and my favorite find…this cute bag:

This will hold lots of cute goodies for my son’s teacher at Back-to-School night! Hope she doesn’t read this blog…

Hopefully, this 97cent spot will change out and get lots of cute seasonal stuff like Target!

Classroom pics coming soon! Hey, and tell your friends about this little ol’ blog- we only need a few more followers for that cute necklace giveaway!
Happy Friday!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

A First Grade Blog…Blog

I’m sure you’ve been to TBA, or Teaching Blog Addict. It’s a collection of a ton of teacher bloggers who post throughout the day and direct you to fun blogs with cool information. I guess it’s kind of like a one-stop blog shop…Anyway, over at Primary Connections, they are trying to get together a group of first grade teachers to create something similar…it’s going to be a collection of just first grade blogs, so you can find something really specific.

Head on over if  you teach first grade and would like to vote on the title of the new blog and also read about what the plan is…I am loving hearing about what is going on in first grade classrooms all over the country!
Click here to vote!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Currently, I am…

Cute idea over at Oh Boy 4th Grade…a way to find out what everyone is up to! Here goes:
Currently, I am…

listening to…Joshua Radin…Love playing him in my classroom. He’s so mellow. My favorite song is, “I’d Rather Be With You…”

loving…the time I spent with my family this summer. My oldest is 7 and my youngest is 4 and this summer was so much fun!

thinking…about how I’m going to manage blog-stalking and Pinterest-stalking once school starts. I have got to get to bed earlier!

wanting…the clear plastic tubs to fit the right way on my word work shelf. It’s not working and I want to scream.

needing…to buy my kids back-to-school shoes!

stalkingThe First Grade Parade (first blog I ever found this summer), First Grade a la Carte (love her games), eighteen25 (secretly wish I was one of their sisters)

What are you up to?