I loved sharing my lesson plan series with you and showing you how I lesson plan. Even though I follow that exact process when I plan every week, I wanted to show you in “real” time how quickly this process takes. I also want to come back every Sunday and share with you my plans for the following week. I love when teachers share their lesson plans for the week, but sometimes I love their ideas so much that I want to use them in my own class, but I can’t because I have already planned for the week. My plan is to post these videos every Sunday with ideas for NEXT week. These plans will not start tomorrow, but the following Sunday. Today’s post is an exception since I am just starting this and not only are these plans for this week, but today is Monday!! So I hope you enjoy today’s video and a list of resources that I used are mentioned at the end of this blog post.
As the third week of 3rd grade is about to start, I figured it would be a good idea to reflect on the past two weeks. This is my 9th year teaching and my first year in 3rd grade. Man, where has this grade been all of my life? They are already so independent, but they still love coming to school. They also LOVE reading. I have a variety of reading levels in my class, but no matter where they are, they love to read. I knew it was time to introduce read to self and it was a hit!
Every students has a book box that they keep in their desks. This is something else that I have fallen in love with. Since they are in 3rd grade, they have the side storage desks. Yes, they are huge and take up a lot of room, but that just means that I have to be creative with what they store in them. When I discovered that they could keep their book boxes in their desks, it was a game changer.
Since their book boxes are in their desks, they have access to them at all times. My favorite time to fit in a little extra reading time is after an assignment. We were working on nouns this week and after they were finished with their assignments, they were able to take their book boxes to read. They loved it and every time I see my kids reading, is a good thing for me too!
If you couldn’t tell by now, I like to get my students up and moving as much as possible. That’s why I love games like Scoot and I Spy. I spy can be used with any task cards or even something as simple as a post-it note and a recording sheet. After teaching the students about nouns, they went on a noun hunt. They had to find different nouns and determine whether or not they were a person, place, or a thing. With all of this movement around the room you would think it would be extremely loud. The opposite is actually true. The students were so quiet and engaged in this whole process and when it was over they were begging for more.
Not only is this my first year in 3rd grade, but it is also the district’s first year using Eureka Math. I do like it, but it moves way too quickly!! Does anyone else use it and have some tips? We’ve been slowing it down a bit and also making it fun. On Friday, we reviewed equal groups, repeated addition, arrays, and number bonds with food, paint, and yarn. The kids loved it and it was a great way for them to review their multiplication strategies.
What better way to end a week than with a birthday. I love sharing birthdays with my students because they are so happy and excited already, adding that little extra happiness to their day really warms my hear.
I love recapping my weeks and reading about how other people’s weeks went. I am linking up with DoodleBugs Teaching for her Five for Friday.
Welcome to a new school year!! I love back to school time because that’s when I am able to start fresh. This year is a big change for me. I moved to a new city, I am teaching in a new school district, a new school, and even a new grade. It’s definitely going to be a learning curve, but I am excited for this new journey. With this new journey comes the first step… a new classroom. This is my classroom tour. This post will include pictures with links to everything I am using in my classroom as well as a video and the end. So grab yourself a cup of tea and enjoy my classroom tour.
Here it the inside of my door. It is ready for meet the teacher night. I went ahead and added my classroom wishlist to the door and parents are free to take any of the Polaroid tags with them if they choose to. I made the header and tags myself, but you can get the other wishlist items HERE. My What Stuck with you Today? chart is something that I created as a fun way to assess my students. All you need are post-it notes. You can find my chart HERE.
I will be using Brag Tags in my classroom this year along with Class Dojo and PBIS. I plan on writing a post all about Brag Tags, but in the meantime, check out these amazing resources.
The front of my room is very colorful, but definitely very functional. I have my objectives, which you can find HERE. I also have my cursive alphabet, found HERE. One of my favorite parts of my classroom is my tree. I have always had a tree in my classroom. Usually I make it out of paper, but this year it’s legit! You will also see my supplies bursting at the seams (and this is BEFORE parents and students bring in their supplies). Later this section will be our intervention supplies.
One of my favorite things to do each year is to have a section to display student work. I have been using a display like this for years. Since my room is full of bright colors, I love the touch that this rainbow display add to the class. When there is no student work on there, it is so colorful and when there is student word up there, it is a fun way for students to be proud of what they’ve done. To make a display like this, all you need is 12×12 scrapbook paper, staples, and clothespins.
My classroom library this year has been a tricky part of my classroom. Unfortunately, I do not have my gorgeous bookshelves that I’ve had in the past. I plan on getting some of having my Dad help me make some, but for now most of my book are stored away by themes and months. My every day books are out for my students to read on this shelf though. I still have to label them, but at least they are ready for them to read now.
I love displaying anchor charts on my content boards. I make sure to add a display area for them because once the school year starts I have a ton of anchor charts, but I always run out of places to display them. When I have a predetermined place for them, it makes displaying them so much easier. To create the display, all I do is staple ribbon to the board and attached the chart paper with clothes pins. Here are links to the resources found on this wall…
My word wall is definitely a focal point to our classroom. I used bright purple fabric to make it pop. I love using fabric and every time I’m at a school that allows me to use fabric I definitely do. I went ahead and created the word wall headings myself as well as used some Melonheadz to accent it. The headers for the letters can be found HERE. The grammar wall headings I created myself. 🙂
I try to keep my teacher desk out of the way. Therefore it is tucked in the corner. I have always wanted to get rid of my teacher desk to allow for more room, but let’s be honest… most of my classroom is dedicated to my students. It’s nice to be able to have my own area to keep things that make me happy. So you will never find me creating a “teacher island” that takes up 1/4 of the classroom, you will find me with a place that I can call my own. You can find the clip chart that I use HERE and my teacher tool box labels HERE.
This is my storage and I feel very fortunate to have so much storage, even though I never feel like I have enough. This counter also adds to my work space. This is where you will find my weekly drawers that have been a huge time saver for me!!
Classroom jobs are new to me… kind of. I have been teaching for 9 years and I haven’t done classroom jobs since my first year of teaching. Usually I just assign kids a certain job that they seem to be really good at and they are just that person for the entire year. With my school being a PBIS school, I wanted one of my incentives to be allowing the students to choose their own job every week. So far they are loving it and I am so glad that I decided to implement jobs again. You can find these jobs HERE.This is the last section of my classroom. Nothing exciting is going on here yet, but this is where we store out center buckets as well as hang our backpacks. I’ve never had backpack hooks and I am loving them. It’s such a space saver.
Here is what my classroom looks like with my overhead lights off and my “mood lighting” on.
Finally, here is my hallway display. Each student has a clip and they are able to change it out weekly/monthly. The students LOVE the fact that they are able to change out their own work on their own and I love how quickly it makes changing out bulletin boards.
Finally, here is a video that shows you in detail what my classroom looks like…
Glue sponges are my number one classroom necessity. It’s true! I have been using glue sponges for over a year and I will never go back… EVER!!
What are glue sponges?
Glue sponges are exactly how they sound, they are sponges with glue on them. There are many different types of containers that you can use as well as sponges, but my favorite are the sandwich containers from Dollar Tree. They come in a set of 3 for $1 and they last you all year.
I did experience some slight cracking in the tops throughout the school year, but the glue sponges still survived a full year with kindergarten students using them several times a day for 10 months. As for sponges, I definitely suggest getting ones that are the same on both sides, avoiding the ones with scrubbing pads. I get mine from Wal-Mart.
Then you just add an entire bottle of glue onto the sponge, close the lid, and let it sit for 24 hours. When you first put the glue on, it will sit on the top, but after 24 hours the glue will be absorbed into the sponge and be ready to go.
How do I use a glue sponge?
Glue sponges can be used on almost everything in your classroom. My favorite way to use them is with interactive notebooks, however you can also use them on art projects. It’s an easy way for students to be able to use glue without using too much or getting too messy. Here is one of my kindergarten students demonstrating how to use a glue sponge.
What are some tips for using glue sponges in your classroom?
Make sure you have the students close the top from the sides until they hear it *SNAP*. Avoid pushing down on the top from the middle, this will lead to cracking of the top.
Remind students to put the top on when they are not using them.
If the glue sponge dries out or isn’t as sticky, spray the sponge with water and flip. If this doesn’t work, you can always add more glue. Don’t over do it though!
If you sponges are look a little… funky, spray them with a mixture of water and hand sanitizer to keep them fresh all year.
Glue sponges work for almost everything, even larger pieces of paper, but keep some glue bottles around for tricky art projects like adhering glitter to paper.
I have also made a video all about glue sponges. In this video I will talk about my tips for using glue sponges as well as a tutorial on how to make your own glue sponges.
If you end up trying out glue sponges in your own classroom or already use them, I would love to hear how to you like them. Also, feel free to share any tips you may have.
If you are reading this blog post, you most likely purchased my teacher planner stickers. If you haven’t purchased my teacher planner stickers yet and you are interested in them, you can check them out HERE.
This post is all about how to customize, print, and cut them in the way that works best for you.
I have gone ahead and created a few videos that will walk you through the process. Even though these video feature my watercolor planner stickers, the information applies for all of my current stickers as well as any future stickers offered in my TpT store.
If you have been a reader of my blog for a while, you know I love organization, planners, and stickers. I have been making planner stickers for my planners for a while and love the color and personality it adds. I had a vision of stickers that I could add to the top of my monthly calendars to add a little more color, cuteness, and inspiration. I am happy to say that I my vision has come to life and I am here to share them with you!! I hope you enjoy them as much as I do and if you would like to pick yourself up a set, you can find it HERE.
These monthly calendar headers are designed to fit in your monthly section of your Erin Condren teacher planner. All you have to do is print them on full sized sticker paper, cut, and stick into place! This is a great way to add some seasonal fun to every month. It also comes with inspirational quotes to get you through even the toughest of days.
I have always been a planner and organizer. I go through phases when I use my planner every day and then there are times where by planner doesn’t even get opened. I know some of you are like this too, am I right? I love my planners and sometimes I feel guilty when I haven’t used it in a while. Something that has gotten me to open my planner more often are planner stickers. I love using planner stickers in my personal planner so I figured, why not use them in my teacher planner!?
I have been using stickers in my teaching planner for about a year now and I love it! Now that I am on summer vacation, I have been able to create some new planner stickers that I am excited to share with you!! These are digital stickers that you will be able to print on your home computer onto full sheet sticker paper. They are designed specifically for the Erin Condren teacher planner, but they will work with any planner.
My very first planner stickers were header stickers. I was getting tired of rewriting my subjects over and over again. So I made these stickers to speed up the process and I fell in love. Not only were they quick and easy to use, it also added some more color to my planner. After that, my obsession with planner stickers only grew.
The next thing that I found myself always doing was writing down events in my monthly section of my planner or even little reminders in my lesson plans itself. I don’t really like the look of my handwriting in my planner unless it is my plans, so again I wanted to make something that was quick and stood out. So my reminder stickers were born!!
Even though I don’t like using my handwriting too often in my planner, unless it is my plans, sometimes you don’t have time to make a specific sticker. That’s when these icon note stickers come in handy. They are perfect for writing a quick note and sticking it in your planner.
Lastly, I created these banner and flag stickers. I plan on using these to highlight special events, writing notes on a specific lesson plan, or even just to add some color.
Adding planner stickers has really been a life changer for me and my planning. I reference my planner more often and it actually makes lesson planning really fun!! If you are interested in getting these watercolor stickers for yourself, you can pick them up HERE.
Unless you have been living under a rock, I’m sure you have heard of Erin Condren and if you haven’t heard about her, let me be the first to introduce to you this amazing company. I have been using Erin Condren planners for years. I started off with a Life Planner and then made the venture into the Teacher Planners. I absolutely love both of them. Of course, there are always a few downsides to any product no matter how much you love it. My only wish for Erin Condren planners is that they release their inserts without a coil. As much as a I love the coil, I end up… UNCOILING mine!! Don’t freak out, I promise you it’s not as bad as it sounds. I have done this with my old teacher planner as well as my life planners and I always love the end result.
If you are interested in seeing how I did this and even considering uncoiling your own planner, this post is for you!!
The first thing you need is an Erin Condren Teacher Planner. If you don’t have one you can get one HERE. This is my referral link where you can get $10 off your first order. It is definitely worth it and it pays for your shipping!!
Next you are going to need a cover. If you are really brave, you can use the cover that came with your planner and use the following steps, but even I’m not that brave. I went ahead and bought a Martha Stewart disc bound cover from Staples.
The rest gets a little bit more detailed, so instead of writing every detail out, I decided to make a video on this whole process.
Now on to some pictures of the final product!!
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and found it helpful. Let me know in the comments below if you plan on uncoiling your Erin Codren planner too!!