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Monday, August 22, 2011

Meet the teacher Monday!!

Tell us a little bit about yourself...

Well, I am 23 years old and am from the lovely state of Michigan. I am a huge sports girl! I play fantasy baseball and football in a league with my boyfriend (this is my 4th year doing it) and love to go to Tigers games! I'm also a Red Sox fan for all your Bostonians!  I love to bake and look at wedding things in my lack of free time. I have always secretly wanted to be a wedding planner at some point in my life, but planning my own may just have to do for now, whenever that may be! (HINT HINT boyfriend!). Speaking of which, I have been with my boy for over 4 years now and he is an uber sweet police officer in our city. I also have the cutest dog, Emmett George (yes he has a middle name)

How long have you been teaching...
This will be my first year with my own class! I student taught in kindergarten this past Jan-May and have also taught gymnastics and tutored the kiddo's I've been nannying for 10 years. 

Something you may not know about me...
My cooperating teacher during student teaching got me hooked on the blog world! I also have a family full of teachers.. my mom, cousin, grandma, and grandpa are all in or were in the education field. This may have been why I tried to go against the norm when I started college at Michigan State. I originally started as a fashion design student... then marketing... then special ed...then regular ed, all in a matter of a few months! Needless to say, I came back to my roots. (Also that I had already typed out this whole thing and then it didn't save :( )

What do you need to improve on...
Well, I may have a better answer for you in a few months! But for now I would say it's not stressing over the little things and knowing there is help for me in my building and through my blog buddies if need be :)

What teaching supply can you not live without...
LABELS. I live for organizing, and could not do this effectively without the help of lovely labels! I also love my Mr. Sketch markers, and still can't stop myself from smelling them :)

What are you looking forward to this year...
Being a first year kindergarten teacher!! As well as getting to know my wonderful co-workers.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Classroom update!!

I worked a little more on my classroom this week in between screening :) Someone broke the laminator at our school and I'm SO annoyed because I have about 200 things to laminate and hang :( Then my room will feel more complete! Sorry the pictures are a little dark, they were taken on my iphone into the sun! Also, I'm awaiting blinds to be installed, and then putting up these adorable polka dot valances my mom made!



Also, my amazing neighbor painted me this little chair for my "star of the week" student!! Isn't she talented?


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Kindergarten Screening

Since my school is brand new, we are currently going through the screening process of the already enrolled Kinders... instead of doing it at the end of the previous year like most of y'all probably do.

I am SO shocked at how high these incoming kiddos are!! I had a girlie today not only know all her upper/lower case letters and sounds, but recite me the Greek alphabet and read me the whole Hop On Pop Dr. Seuss book......... and she is still 4. I mean, c'mon!! Another little girlie came in reading at a 4th grade level according to her mother who is a reading specialist at another school ( I'm worried the curriculum we've been given is going to be tossed out the window on day 1!).

It's so great to see how much parents are working with their kids at home these days and how well pre-schools really are preparing kids for elementary school :)

PS. more classroom pictures by Friday (or Saturday)

Favorite Quote of the week:

Teacher asked " Do you know your phone number?"
Kinder response "...I don't have a phone! But I have an app on my ipod where you can text people, want me to tell you that number? It's a real sneaky one"

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Classroom PICS!!

Here are some pictures of my brand new classroom :) I think I got more socializing done on Friday than I did decorating.. oops :) . I'm going in tomorrow and almost every day this week (we have kindergarten screening) so hopefully I'm able to get a lot more done!! I mostly just arranged the furniture on friday and unloaded my car.
I was just testing colored paper with my boarder on that orange bulletin board!

Reading area... not leaving the crate seats there.

Reading/ chalk board- dry erase easel area.

My desk. Still need a boarder around the bulletin board...among other things.

Every class room either has a bright blue, bright green, or bright orange wall.. I'm happy with the blue :)

Thursday, August 11, 2011

New Classroom Eve...

I'm like a little kid on Christmas Eve!!! I get to go see my brand spanking new classroom tomorrow and I couldn't be more excited :) I will post pictures of it before and after as soon as I can!! I just had to share my excitement with the blog world!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Well Hello little garage sale!

As I was flying through my subdivision the other day late for an appointment, I saw a random garage sale with children's toys so i thought I should pull over! Lucky for me that I did!! Just wanted to share what I found :) All for a mere $4.80!

Sight word books!! 18 of them :)

Memory, Sight word bingo, and alphabet bingo!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Teacher Camp, CKH and yey!!!

I Know this is longgggggggg, but read it all, you won't be sorry!!

I'm back!!!! I'm sorry it's been a while since I've posted, I was at new teacher orientation...aka teacher camp. I was wary of it at first but WOW! I learned so much and came back on top of the world :) First let me say that my new co-workers are AMAZING! I could not have asked for a better staff to work with for my first year of teaching... not to mention my principal is unbelievable! I have to be careful around him because he makes you feel so comfortable it's like hes not even a boss! (we chatted about gossip magazines the first day to give u an idea). I can't wait to get started at school, my staff  90% young, like average age is 24/25, and so nice and fun! Shannon, Kati, Chelsea, and Rachel if you're reading this I love y'all!

Anywho. I learned about CKH (Capturing Kids Hearts) the first two days I was there. I don't know if any of you have gone through this training before, but it changed my life. My girlfriend was sitting next to me during our seminar on Tuesday and said "I can't tell if this is a teacher seminar or a self help seminar" hehe it was both!  This program is all about how to connect with your students and "Behave With Care." It teaches them that they are responsible for choosing their consequence if they act out and how to self manage. The leader Bethany (who I want to be my aunt) and other teachers said that they were able to get their classes to self manage (I'll explain in a moment) by November every year and it changed the way they teach.

Self managing for students basically means that they "check" each other on behavior. If a student sees another misbehaving, talking out of turn, using supplies incorrectly, etc, they give them a hand sign and it tells them to get back on task. This saves the teacher SO much time from addressing every little thing students do. One kinder teacher said that her kinder kids were self managing so well that she could have left the classroom for an hour and nothing would have gone wrong... now how does that sound!?

If y'all have the budget or time, you should see if you school can get this program to come to you for Professional Development. It is through the Flip Flippen Group, Capturing Kids Hearts.... and yes, his name is really Flip Flippen haha.

Bethany, my new self proclaimed aunt, also taught the teachers that being sarcastic, or negative really can hurt your work and personal relationships. I am a very sarcastic person.. so this was tough for me to hear. She challenged all of us to call someone we had a close relationship with that night and ask "What is one thing I do that hurts our relationship?" (stress on the ONE thing). I did this with my boyfriend and I sort of already expected the answer. I didn't know however, that it hurts him when I do it. This stung a little! I challenge all  of my blog buddies to do this :) Let me know if you do!!

Changing something you do in a personal relationship or work relationship (no matter how hard it may be) will really make you feel so much better and create a better environment for your family or your school family. Teach your kiddos to be the best person they can by modeling :)

Well now that I feel like Dr. Phil, I hope you read all this and feel inspired to make a change and that you have a great work family like I found out I do!!

Happy Monday... 29 days till the first kid day!

Ps. I also learned curriculum and our behavior mangagement system, which was great.. but less exciting than the other stuff :)
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