Classroom Tour 2013


I finally got my room done enough to share some pics. I have to put the finishing touches on it tomorrow before Back to School Bash. My fingers are crossed I can get everything done. It seems ever year, there is less and less time to work on my room and more time spent doing professional development.

You may recall my shock and horror when I saw my new room had two fake accordian walls. It's tough not having bulletin boards, but I'm trying to make it work :-) My room is T.I.N.Y. I don't know why it looks so spacious in these pictures. Ha!

I'm going to try REALLY HARD to remember to credit the resources you see around my room. Almost everything came from an edu-blog or TpT.

 LEFT: This is a view of the front of my room. You can't really see them, but on my board are hand signal cards from A Cupcake for the Teacher's Hand Signals & Voice Levels {Chevron Theme}. I also love the picture direction cards on my board, but I can't find where I got them. I suspect they may also be from A Cupcake for the Teacher.

RIGHT: This is my unfinished calendar area. I'm
going to move the months of the year to below the board to make room for some place value and time

LEFT: This is my guided reading table. I do not have chairs for it yet, but I may make some crate seats instead, I'm running out of time to make a table skirt for it. There are a few Cara Carrol items in this pic: reading strategy mini posters, schedule cards, and some items from her Chevron Classroom Decor Bundle.  The round labels on the baskets come from her Chalk One Up for Being Organized {The Ultimate Chalkboard Labeling Set}. I can't recall which blog I downloaded the vowel glue bottles from!!?? But I love them.

 RIGHT: The left side of the room contains my classroom library and writing center. On the filing cabinet on the back wall I have my clip chart which was made by Lindsay of For the Love of First Grade. I didn't take a close up, but it's super cute chevron print and part of her Behavior to Hoot About {Clip Chart Discipline & Coupon Reward} system. 
LEFT: The mini bulletin boards are made out of Dollar Tree foam core presentation boards that I taped together, covered in fabric, then hot glued mounted to the accordian walls.  The yet-to-be-labeled primary colored bins are math manipulatives and soon-to-be math tubs.
RIGHT: This table will be my writing center. The only thing on it right now is markers and a basket of themed picture dictionary sheets from Kerri B's Writing Centers. But I'm gonna hook it up soon. The writer's eye stuff is more Cara Carrol.

 LEFT: My word wall cards are from the Moffat Girls' Bird Themed Word Wall (and more!).
RIGHT: The back wall. The blue pocket chart will have my Daily Five schedule. I really should take some up-close pictures! The cards are from Michelle Hudgeons at Smitten with First. I think I downloaded them directly from her blog, but I can't find the exact post. They are Dr. You-Know-Who themed, but they have chevron that ties in with my classroom theme. I have some Daily Five related posters being laminated that will hang back there too. The red pocket chart will be my jobs chart.  The cards in it are from A Cupcake for the Teacher's Jobs in the Classroom {Chevron Theme}.

I plan to be back next weekend with highlights from my first week of school.

'til then,

post signature

Teacher Week: Let's Talk About Me!

It's Teacher Week! According to Blog Hoppin', "Each day this week is a different linky party with a 'hot teacher topic.'"

Today is:

1. I'm a mommy to four...yes, four, children. The age span between the oldest and the youngest is 15 years! Looong story.

The sweetie on the left is 15 months old. When she says, "cheese" her smile gets so big her eyes disappear. She gets that from her father. The doctor says she has very advanced speech with over 30 words and more everyday. Proud mommy. The lil beauty in the middle is three years old. She does ballet and gymastics. Yesterday at Target the girlies both got Hello Kitty hats which they are modeling. The pic on the right shows the size difference between the oldest and the youngest. He's 16. I'm not posting close-ups of the teenage boys. They would be mortified if they knew I mentioned them in my blog. The 14 year old can't stand it when we "Facebook him." Hehehe.

2. I'm married to Manuel. He's a financial advisor and an excellent husband and father. Except when I clean up after him. 

He would also threaten me with a firing squad if I posted his pic, so here's a pic of my wedding ring instead. I adore it. And, I'm totally disgusted by how hairy my fingers look in this pic. LOL

3. I kinda speak Spanish. Okay, I speak Spanglish. Sort of.

4. My family is very culturally diverse. It seems all of my sisters (3) are married to a man of a different ethnicity. The only unmarried sibling is my brother. I joke that if he marries an Asian women, we would have just about every inhabited continent covered.

5. I recently cut my hair off and had it dyed redish brown. I'd post a pic, but I try never to take selfies so I don't have one.

6. My secret singer crush is Selena Gomez. I really like her songs, but I feel like a 12 year old kid for saying it out loud :-)

7. I L.O.V.E. reality tv. Does that make me a bad person??? Keeping Up with the Kardashians, Tia & Tamera, Biggest Loser, Impractical Jokers...I think this means I wish I were a thin, funny, wealthy socialite, actress. No, I don't think, I know that's what this means!

8. I wish I owned a Buffalo Wild Wings. My fave flavors are Thai Curry and Mango Habanero. What's yours?

9. My two favorite movies of the summer thus far are: 2 Guns and We're the Millers. The part in We're the Millers where the boy sings TLC's "Waterfalls" is hilarious!

10. I'm going to be late linking tomorrow's Classroom Digs. Due to construction I just got into my room today. Tuesday and Wednesday I have trainings all day. Can't make it back to my digs til Thursday, but I'll finish up and take pics for sure.

Don't forget to link up!

post signature

{Monday Made-It}

Hi friends,

I've been soooo busy enjoying my last week of summer vacation (boo-hoo, sniff, sniff, sigh) that I just couldn't get my Monday Made-It post done on Monday. So, this is a late edition!

In sixth grade pointers aren't necessary. Some of the kiddos are taller than I am! But in first, everyone has pointers. You know what I'm talking about, right?

I shopped pointers and decided they were way over priced, so I decided to make my own. I used cardboard rods from dry cleaner hangers. (Please excuse the tacky table cloth, but I don't wanna hot glue my table.)

You can probably think of 100s of cute things to attach to the rods. I used glue bottles. First, I had to empty the bottles. I lasted all of three seconds squeezing glue out of bottles, when I thought of this:

Place a styrofoam plate on top of a bowl.
Uncap the glue bottle.
Poke a hole in a styroam plate with a knife.
Stick the glue bottle in the hole.

Then, I really wised up and poked several bottles at once into the styrofoam plate.

I spray painted my glue bottles. I used neon green, neon pink, and white because I had those colors left over from a project at the beginning of last school year. If I could do it all over again, I would only use the white or not use spray paint at all. Now that some of the pointers are finished, I can tell that the spray paint can easily be scratched off the glue bottle. After I removed the cardboard rod, I used the wire part of the hanger to help in the painting process. This trick may come in handy in the furture. I used pliers to straighten the curved ends of the hanger, then poked the hangers into the ground. They looked like Ys sticking out of the ground. I stuck the glue bottles on the ends of the hangers so I didn't have to hold the bottles or just spray one side at a time and wait for it to dry before I could spray the other.

Lawn junkies... no worries. The grass got cut shortly after this pic and the paint spots are gone.

I used googly eyes and fuzzies to help decorate my bottles. But you could use just about anything.

These are the ones I've finished so far. The green one is a lizard. The second one is an IDK what. The third one is a very pink princess. My fave is the mustache one. I attached a white rod after this pic was taken. I like the simplicity of it. Too bad I didn't think of it until I working on number four, or I would probably just make them all like that!

I knifed a hole into the bottom of each bottle, inserted a rod, hot glued around the rod at the base of the bottle, and then wrapped each rod with ribbon.

There are so many options for the end of the rod if you don't like the glue bottles. A large decorative eraser might be cute.

If you don't need lengthy pointers, my sister suggested using wooden spoons. Paint the spoons and add googly eyes to make them look like animals. Neat-o idea!

Now head on over to Fourth Grade Frolics for some more fabulous DIY ideas!

post signature


Hiya friends,

It's August already? Whaaaaaaaaaat! I'm not ready. I'm not ready.

Today I am linking up with Farley at Oh' Boy 4th Grade for her monthy CURRENTLY party.

This is what is going on right now...

Listening: My husband is bathing the girlies. I can hear Sponge Bob playing on the bedroom tv.

Loving: Ya'll! Do you know how expensive pointers are at school supply stores? I can afford to buy ONE. Ha! But a few hours ago I saw my girls playing with a cardboard rod from the bottom part of a hanger. You know, the kind you get from the dry cleaner when you get pants cleaned? Well, we have a ton of those because my husband gets his dress shirts, slacks, and suits dry cleaned. It just hit me - there's the pointers for my classroom. I can wrap ribbon around it, or paint it, or whatever. To find inspiration for the actual pointer I started walking around my house and I spotted an Elmer's School Glue bottle. I think I will paint or otherwise decorate empty glue bottles and insert the carboard rods into the bottom of the bottles. Maybe I'll glue jewels or something on the bottles. Who knows. The orange twist top will be the actual pointer. It will look a teacher's wand! This is on my to-do list for tomorrow. I'll post it about for Monday Made-it. 

Thinking: I took the girls out of their former daycare for the summer. My neighbor left her teaching job to pursue her dream of opening a childcare center. The original opening date was mid-July. I was going to put the girls in  this new daycare at the very beginning of August so I could work in my classroom, attend trainings, go on a few lunch dates with my hubby, hit the gym...BUT...the opening date has been pushed to late August! My neighbor has graciously agreed to keep the girls in her home when I have to go back to work until the center opens. While I trust her completely, I feel a bit guilty about her babysitting so many days in a row. And, I have mom guilt about wishing the daycare were open so I could have a little ME time before school starts back. You know how that is!

Wanting: This is my first year in first grade. I have a trillion questions. One of my fears is that a parent will ask me something at Open House and I won't know the answer!!! I doubt the rest of my team, more seasoned first grade teachers, are in a hurry to start planning and discussing the upcoming year, but I feel the NEED. If I were still teaching sixth grade I could get in my room two days before school started and be ready to go. I'd be totally relaxed and chillin' right now.

Needing: A neck massage is sounding really good right now...and if I win the lotto I can afford one!

B2S Must Haves: Since I've never taught first before, I had to keep my answers pretty general. My bladder needs informed that it will not be going to the potty at will for much longer. And, me and my sixth grade teaching friends really need to get together before school starts!!!

See you Monday,

post signature