I was so excited when I went to the Dollar Tree today and they had these Stretchy Snap Hands! Speech Room News had the original idea and I thought my kids would love doing this! I am going to initially try it with my summer school kids. You lay out cards on a table or the floor and the students fling the sticky hand and whatever they catch they have to tell you what it is.

I made some cards to use to play with this. You can get them on tpt.  Enjoy!

 Hand Slap Letter and Number Game Freebie

I'm linking up with Kacey for Five for Friday!

This past week was a lot of fun and I must say I feel like I am finally getting my energy back. When I left school this year I was terribly burned out, but am getting back into the groove finally!

1. Ethan got out in his pool for the first time this summer!

2. We had our first play date with a good friend of mine and her two kids. Ethan loved following her son around.

3. Saturday I went to a concert...Dawes. If you have not heard of them I definitely recommend checking them out.

4. I just completed two activity packs.

The lemonade pack you get here at tpt

5. Now for a freebie. I had made some I Can Awards previously, but after Krista came out with these cute badges I could not resist making new ones. I love all of the clip art she comes out with!

You can get it here on tpt or

Freebie Fridays

Have a great weekend!

I am linking up with The First Grade Parade for Throwback Thursday. I picked one of my most popular posts to share. After looking back at how my classroom started to what it ended as there were some changes (my visual schedule, way more visuals added, and just placement of furniture).  I also can see some more things that I would like to change for next year.  It is also hard to believe I have been blogging now for almost 2 years! Where has the time gone?!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Day 2- Getting Classroom Ready

Day 2 was a success! I got my bulletin boards done and completed the laminating I wanted to get done. I also was able to get some of my apple activities out. When I go into my classroom on Wednesday I will have some extra help so I can get things copied and get my assessment files completed.

I use these picture prompts at centers so my students know what to do.

Classroom rules, behavior chart, and more picture prompts.

This is the finished starting the day poster.

picture schedule. I remove each of the pictures following it being done.
Behavior chart and classroom rules.

Calendar area. It is all accessible to the kids this year because they loved being able to point to everything when they were the special helper last year.
The months and days of the week were placed at the bottom.

Birthday bulletin board. More cupcakes will go up once I get my class list and see how many kids I have. Last year I had LOTS of January birthdays.
I am going to try using circle time prompts this year. My calendar picture went MIA though. I am on the hunt for it.

We will be making school buses with pictures of us that will go up there.

Money and opposites posters.
Money and opposites posters.

Shapes, colors and ABC posters.
My desk- that is for Day 3.

Pocket chart. I use shower curtain rings that were on clearance for the rings. The number chart, center chart, abc chart and whose here chart are all on there. The rack is from IKEA.
An overall view of my classroom.

I updated my IEP data collection graph. I use this to record how the students are doing on their IEP goals and when I go to plug it in to tienet it makes it super quick and easy. It also is easy to refer to when we have child study meetings and for report cards.
IEP Data Collection

I can't wait to see everyone elses rooms and the progress they are making. More pics to come following Wednesday.

Show Off Your Space Linky Party

Have a great Thursday and I can't wait to check out everyone else's Throwback blog posts. :)

Well, after a fun play date at the park with a friend of mine and her kids I have to say I am pretty tired out. However, I think Ethan is still raring to go. How do little  ones have so much energy?!

Anyways, I am linking up with Kindergarten Smiles for New Teacher Tips. I remember how anxious and excited I was my first year of teaching Kindergarten. One thing for new teacher...I think that when you start in a new position you are a new teacher all over again. I remember when I started teaching ECSE and a lot of the same feelings and the anticipation of something new was the same as my first year and because it was a different school and grade it was very different from my previous experiences.

What have I learned from being a new teacher?

1. You can't do everything. I had LOTS of plans and ideas and because of time and just learning a new curriculum and getting a feel for the school, my students, and co-workers I didn't have time to get everything I wanted accomplished and that is OKAY! Do what you can, keep a note and try to tackle that next year.
2. Get to know your students AND parents on a personal level as much as possible. The more they know that you sincerely care the more easily you are able to tackle challenging issues more easily. And the more respect you have from everyone.

3. Have a management plan and stick to it! Some things that work with one group may not work with another, but at least you have a starting point. Have high expectations and make sure to be consistent on how you deal with certain behaviors because the kids do notice and learn from each other.

4. Have fun and be creative. Just coming out of school you have LOTS of ideas and try some of them out. Some plans will be a disaster and some will go amazingly well. Keep notes on what worked, what didn't, and what you could change to possibly make it work better next time if it is something you'd like to pursue.
positive quotes 18 Start your week off with positive thoughts (19 photos)

What tips do you have for new teachers? Make sure to check out some of the other great tips from teachers too. It always nice to have a friendly reminder or an oh-yeah...maybe I should do that. Happy Tuesday!

I had a busy week crafting. Sorry this is going to be a little long. The positive thing is some of these projects took just minutes once you have the supplies. :)

I made a sea glass Mason jar. You can get the recipe here. I found just two drops of food coloring was enough and I recommend using a foam brush. I am going to use it as a vase in our kitchen.

2. I made some Halloween mummies. Another quick and easy craft. All you again need are Mason jars, googly eyes (I glued those on first), mod podge and some gauze. Wrap the gauze around the mason jar and you have mummies.

3. This one was for Ethan (excuse the messy table). This was so easy I may need to do it as an end of the year gift for next year. You just need some sponges and a hair tie. You get a video here at Valerie's blog Inner Child.

4. This one took me awhile. Our fold out chairs and tables made over.
First I removed all of the old vinyl and padding. Took out all the screws.


Second, I only needed two cans of cheap black spray paint and sprayed them.
Next, I got vinyl for $4 (two yards worth) and cut it out to fit the bottoms of the chairs and the table top.
Then, I went around and nailed the vinyl over what was left.
Last, put it all back together. It took awhile, but was overall an easy project to complete and cheap (Only $6!) and now they don't look so grungy.
Here are some things I made for school.
Last year, I made fabric bins and unfortunately they did not hold up with how hard my kids can be on boxes when putting things away. I think these duct tape ones will work way better. You can get the link to how to make these here. These are way easier to make than fabric ones and I have a feeling will be more durable. I just used one color. The link has more colorful ones. Each of the toy boxes I am trying to make different colors for easier clean-up.
1. I covered the bottom first with just straight lines around.

2. Then I went around the sides and once fully around stopped and cut it and then went on to the next strip.

3. I cut out the handles for easy pick-up.

Last year, I printed the pictures to designate the different areas of the room and honestly there was something about them I didn't like. So I went back and just color coded them to my center chart. This should be easier for my students to differentiate and just look a little neater to me.

Lastly, I completed my progress monitoring binder for next year.

I got dividers for each trimester.

And then I divided circle time and centers and am vs. pm.

Whew! If you made it to here thanks for reading! I hope you found some fun and easy new craftss to do this summer!

I am linking up with The Applicious Teacher to share my classroom Management strategies.
 I have a behavior chart that I use with my afternoon class only. The students can move up or down. I have pictures of happy and what the consequence is so they know what happens. It needs to be very clear and literal. If the students move up they get a sticker, positive reinforcement and a prize if all the way to the top. If they are having some trouble behaving they get a warning, then a time-out and if it continues missing out on some of outside time, some gym time, or the play center. I also keep in contact with the parents about negative and positive behavior because they are a key influence on a negative behavior changing and a positive behavior continuing. If I notice something extraordinary I try to write home about it and make a big deal to encourage the behavior to continue.

I have schedules all over my classroom. My students need to know what's next to reduce their anxiety and stress about transitioning to the next activity. This is the one I currently use. It changed half way through the year. The key to this is emphasizing what is done and what is next.

I also have a separate schedule for circle time because that is a longer chunk of our day.

Lastly, the use of visuals. This is just one that I use. There are visuals all over my classroom. They are also all in different sizes and many of them are located in different areas of the classroom for easy access.

For my kiddos routine and following through on consequences is the key to their success. Some of them like to push the limit to see how far they can go, but with lots of persistence and getting them to understand their expectations they are able to behave and succeed!

What classroom management techniques do you do to help your kids be successful?!

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