Sunday, May 29, 2016

Five for Friday

I'm linking up with Kacey at Doodlebugs Teaching for Five for Friday. And.... I'm late. Honestly, my post will be more like "Five for the Month of May". This month has been a whirlwind, so I haven't posted in ages. 

Reason #1 that my month was crazy:  Smarter Balanced Testing (our state-mandated testing) AND NWEA Testing. We started testing a week late, because our internet was down for a week!

Reason # 2 the month of May was crazy: Colonial Day. I enjoy Colonial Day at my school, and the kids do too. This year I dressed up, and you'll notice that I did NOT include a picture! The kids did colonial crafts, wrote with quill pens, made butter, and played indoor and outdoor colonial games. 

Reason #3 May was a whirlwind: The Rainbow Fish performance. Our music teacher is amazing. Each year, she prepares the 3rd graders for their show. Every class has a chance to play percussion instruments and recorders. Everyone sings. She even does vocal pieces with parts. As you can imagine, getting the kids ready requires several rehearsals. I'm pleased to report that the show was a great success. Our music teacher is not only a talented teacher. She made the rainbow fish as well!

Reason #4: STEM and VIP days.  We had an all-day STEM day on May 20th. Teams of students worked on challenges such as building a marble maze out of Legos and building boats. On May 25th, each child has a VIP visit our room. I prepped three different math stations for students to do with their VIPs.  You can read about the paint dabber game and grab free game sheets by hopping over to this blog post

Reason #5: Field trip to Old Sturbridge VillageWe went on Friday, and the trip felt like a year-end celebration. The students have worked SO hard on testing this month. It was so nice to just go and enjoy the day with them. 

All of these special days really did help to offset the testing. My students have been TROOPERS, and I'm so proud of their growth this year. 

Thanks for stopping by! 

Monday, May 16, 2016

Praise, Improvement, and a Reflection Freebie

Thank you for knocking my socks off! That was the message my students saw one morning when they walked into the classroom. I used chalk markers that a colleague let me borrow, and now I NEED my own set!

I had spent much of my weekend grading. When I was finished, I was thrilled to find that the pile of quite-well-done work was much taller than the fix and/or finish pile! I'd been waiting ALL YEAR for that to happen!

I passed out all of the work to students with instructions to examine everything and to read all of my comments. They looked through it all carefully and then completed a Glow and Grow sheet. This sheet gives students an opportunity to reflect on what they're doing well. It also prompts them to identify areas in which they could still work to improve. This "Glow and Grow" idea has been floating around Pinterest for a long time. I created my own version.

Grab the Glow and Grow sheet by clicking here

How do you motivate students to reflect on their learning?  I'd love to read your ideas in the comments.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Getting Ready for Next Year and a SALE

Teachers always start thinking about next year before the current year is over. The end of the current school year makes us reflect on what we want to improve and change.

Have you started to get ready for next year? Do you want to? If your Teachers Pay Teachers wishlist is as full as mine, I have good news!

Teachers Pay Teachers is holding a sale tomorrow and Wednesday, May 3rd and May 4th! 

My entire store will be 20% off, including already discounted bundles. TPT will give an additional 10% off when you use this code: CELEBRATE!

One way I'll prep for next year is to get my Sub Tub ready to go. To grab the free label click hereTo get a closer look at what I include in my Sub Tub, click here.

In my store, I have bundles of emergency sub plans for grades one, two, and three.  Each set includes detailed, sub-friendly lesson plans and all materials for reading, spelling, writing, and math.  

Sets can be purchased individually, but you save 25% by purchasing the bundle. Those already discounted bundles will be an additional 20% during the sale! Click on the product descriptions to find the bundles in my store.


I plan to do move many, many items from my wishlist to my cart during the sale. Happy shopping! Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Currently with Farley for the Last Time!

Farley from Oh' Boy, It's Farley has announced that she is retiring her Currently link up.  Farley has so much spunk and so much personality, and I'm happy to be linking up for the final Currently.

My students start a week full of state testing tomorrow. I'm feeling jittery, since it's been a whole year since I proctored this particular test. Once I get the first day under my belt, I'll feel better!  The students and I will be oh-so-happy when we're finished. 

My students have matured so much this year! It's been a bit of a challenging year, and I LOVE how they've grown individually and as a class. I've warned them that from now until the last day on June 10th, I'm probably going to be very sappy and tell them how much I'll miss them a few times a day.

I have spring fever! Despite how much I love my students, I am REALLY ready for summer. I'm staying motivated because:

1.) I'm the adult! That's what adults do!
2.) I still have lots of things I really want to teach 
     before I run out of time! 

Pop over to Farley's blog to join in the final Currently link up!