Alphabet Strips

Hey Everyone, 
Thought I'd pop in with a quick little trick and freebie! Hope all is good with you! Brrrrrrrrr! It's getting cold here in Canada! I DO love Fall, but today I'm kinda wondering where the Summer has gone :(

WEll... Here we go...This morning I woke up at 4am in distress! I realized we were beginning my Magic Crayon Unit centers and thought about how difficult it would be for some of my kiddies to complete the ABC Order centers. The theme is based on colors and with words like blue, black, and brown, I knew I'd have some confused little kiddos. ABC order can be such a difficult task! 

There I was, thinking about centers and talking to myself... "Oh, no, some of them won't be able to do it!" "I can't sit with that group, I need to circulate!" "It's our first time doing literacy centers, they're all going to need me!" etc... etc... Am I the only one who wakes up with such silly preoccupations!?!?! Or is this a teacher thing? Perhaps a woman thing? Blogger thing? Who knows!!!! 

I thought up an easy little trick for the kiddies to use and of course needed to get up early to "create" it. I use the term "create" loosely as this really wasn't much of a task! Although, it did require laminating at 5am! Another quirky task I'm sure some can share with me!

I went over ABC order with the kiddies on the white board and showed them how they could cross out each letter with a dry erase marker. Those who really struggle found it easier to go through each letter and look for words in their list. Crossing out each letter as they used them helped them keep track of the alphabet and where they were in their list! 

Basically, it worked like a charm!

I printed the strips on colored card stock and laminated for both durability and "writeability!" If you look carefully, you can see how my student crossed out each letter with a dry erase marker. 

You can grab a free copy of the strips right over HERE!

Until next time...

Using Window Writers in Center

Good Morning Everyone, 
I'm so excited to link up (AGAIN) with some F-A-B-U-L-O-U-S bloggers in yet another amazing Bright Ideas Blog Hop! 

This is such a great way to get, well, BRIGHT ideas!

This month's BRIGHT idea is one that I use all year round. It is also a great tool to use in any classroom and at any grade level.

I call it: Window Writer Fun! 

WELL, stop by your local Walmart or Target and grab yourself a few packs of these bad boys because you are going to looooooooove them! 

I use them for E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G and the kiddies get a real kick out of it!

I apologize for the poor quality in photography, it is QUITE a big task to get a good shot of a window!!
These markers create an instant center and are fun and simple to use. The quality in "real life" is quite good and it washes off quickly and easily. 

You can use them for absolutely anything (well maybe not anything, but ALMOST)! 
Be sure to make it interesting!

- Spelling Center
- ABC Order Center
- Math Facts
- Publish a Story
- Write a Class Story
- Graphs

As I mentioned, the possibilities are endless!

Leave a comment with MORE Window Writers BRIGHT IDEAS! 
I'd LOVE to hear from you!

I hope you enjoyed this BRIGHT idea! Please consider joining me on FacebookInstagram, and my Teacher Store.

For more bright ideas from over 100 different bloggers, please browse through the link-up below and choose a topic that interests you. Thanks for visiting!

Until next time...


Five For Friday

Hey Everyone,
I'm linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for some Five for Friday Fun!

1. Fall Wardrobe

OK! So as MUCH as I loooooooooove Summer, I gotta say, there's something about a crisp FAll day that makes me Happy, Happy! Why, You ask? Well, I'm all about fashion and I'm all about accessorizing and Fall has some great accessories ladies! I'm talking scarves, cute hats, jean jackets, flats, patterns, great colors, riding boots... I can go on, and on, and on, and on... 
Oh, and I also kinda really like halloween and Thanksgiving too. So ya, I'm all about Fall right now!

2. Back to School

I know many of you have been back in the classroom for quite a while now, but we just finished our third week with the kiddies. I CANNOT believe how quickly time is flying by, nor how much we have done already! My two groups are I-N-C-R-E-D-I-B-L-E! I am really blessed! 
Smarts, personality, spunk, well behaved, organized, and always happy and smiling. 
Like I said, I-N-C-R-E-D-I-B-L-E!

3. BB Committee (Also known as the Bulletin Board Committee) 

My colleague and I made the mistake of making suggestions to our principal on how to decorate the school hallways and main bulletin boards and before we knew it we were solicited for a committee that is composed of TWO members! Myself and the other big mouth! HeHe! Needles to say, we're taking this role very seriously and have beautified our school quite a bit in the last few weeks.
 Here is a small taste of what we've gotten done so far (more to come when we are done)! 

Our principal calls grade 1 and 2 Happy Land! This is the bulletin board that leads to our classrooms!
It's fitting. It really is Happy Land! 

This is the bulletin board in our main entrance. We are going to place class pictures all around the tree and change the colors for each season. 
It shall become orange, red, and yellow in the next coming weeks!

4. Magic Crayons

Oh my word, we are having a BLAST, I mean a complete and utter BLAST with my Magic Crayons unit! The kiddies are absolutely eating it up and we are learning so much and just having, well, a BLAST! 

More to come on this unit! Can't wait to blog all about it!
You can check out my Magic Crayons Pack HERE!

5. 1,000 FOLLOWERS on IG

Whoop! Whoop! I finally reached 1,000 followers on IG and I couldn't be happier. Whaaaaaat!
I'd like to thank all of you who follow me and show the love! I appreciate all your likes and comments and really love being a part of this virtual teaching community! As I've mentioned in the past, blogging and networking with all you wonderful people has really made me a better teacher! Thank you!

Thanks for stopping by and be sure to link up with Doodle Bugs Teaching!

Until next time...


Math Center Madness

Hi Everyone, 
I'm so happy to be blogging! The beginning of the year always comes full swing and I always fall a little behind on my posts AND my blog stalking! I've been catching up and it feels great! You know it's worth while when you add creating units and blogging about your school day to the looooooooonnnnggggg list of things we teachers do! I could be out with friends or, let's face it, doing what I really want to be doing right now... Taking a Nap, 
but instead I'm typing away and loving every minute of it! 

I wanted to stop by to talk to you about some fun stuff that's going on in our classroom. Language Arts has to be my all time favorite subject to teach, especially in second grade. I was not "into" math as a student and well, I'm not as "into" math as a teacher either! I'm a reading and writing girl. All the Way! This year, I am making it a point to become a MATH GIRL! 
Yes, that's a thing, and I'm gonna succeed!

I decided to make centers for all of the units we are covering in math and so far they are proving to be a great success. The kiddies are gonna rock math this year! 

I am making a series of centers and should have a total of about 30 by the end of the school year!  A big feat, I know... But well worth the hard work and efforts. 
My students are learning and having fun doing it! 

I began by introducing the concepts in our math workbook and created a math word wall with all the important words we are using. Math language IS language after all... Right?! 
And, I'm all about language!

We are working on the concepts of Representing Numbers and Reading and Writing Numbers.
To introduce the word wall and review some of the words we had learned, I decided to make a little game. Students had to answer the questions, by using words from the word wall. It was a second grade form of Jeopardy! Sometimes, I feel so clever! Hehe!

Sidebar: I have to admit this... I didn't feel so clever, in the last 3 minutes, as I tried to get the front page picture to stay on the left side of this post! 
Ahhhh, blogger! Gotta love when it's uncooperative and does wtv it darn well wants! 

This activity was a lot of fun and I got to assess what the students had learned and retained over the first two weeks of school.

You can grab a FREE copy of the word wall and activity sheet right HERE

You may also want to check out my Representing Numbers and Missing Numbers packs. 

I combined the two packs to make a total of 8 centers. I printed in color and laminated the sheets. The students write on the laminated cards with dry erase markers (you'd think I'd given them bars of gold)! I also chose 4 out of the 8 centers to use as assessments. The students record their answer for ONE card on paper and then complete the rest of the center on the laminated cards. It's working effectively. 
Of course, I walk around and help as needed. I also take notes with my trusty pen and clipboard.

Here are some "action" shots! I love how hard they work!

Click on the Math Madness label on the right side of my blog to get more free word walls and check out more of my math centers. 

So far, I think this MATH GIRL thing is going pretty well! I'll keep you all posted! 

Until next time...

Behavior Modification Program & Positive Reinforcement

Hello Everyone,
As the first few days of school are behind us, our class is beginning to use the behavior modification program I set up. Routine and structure are my middle name and I am quite regimented in the way I run my classroom. With that said, I also FIRMLY believe in positive reinforcement and spend much of my day praising students and supported their positive behaviors. 

I run a simple behavior modification program, that many of you are probably familiar with.
 I believe in keeping it short, easy, quick, and visual. 

We have FOUR rules.


These rules encompass a lot and I feel that 4 is a good number. Students do not have to worry about remembering dozens of rules and the rules that are important are simple, clear, and to the point. 
They are displayed in our classroom and we go over them regularly.

I use the program as follows...

Students begin the day with a green card in their pocket, if they have trouble following class rules, they change their card. They receive TWO warnings (2 yellow cards). After two warnings, they lose their recess (orange card). If they are still having a difficult time, they must change their card to red (note home) and finally blue (visit to the principal). This almost never happens, but when it does, I ALWAYS follow through. It is important to keep your word, whether it be for something positive or for a consequence. Students must understand that you are in charge and what you say matters. 
No empty threats from this teacher! They DO NOT work!

It can sometimes be difficult, however you must always follow through. In the long run, it really works out! Last year I had a difficult group. Tantrums, running out of class, foul language, were a regular occurrence at the beginning of the year. With constant structure and follow through, the behavior improved and after some time all I needed to do was look at my students and they turned their negative behavior right around! It was hard work and sometimes I just wanted to give in, but I didn't and in the end it paid off! 

Take your time at the beginning of the year. You do not need to rush into activities and worry about getting things done. Setting structure, routine, and behavior expectations is crucial at this time of year and the time you spend now will be returned mid-year when your class is running smoothly. Practice, practice, practice! Demonstrate the expected behaviors and PRAISE them when they display it. 

I use these fun, clear containers from the dollar store to display all the wonderful prizes students can receive when they do behave appropriately. They LOVE to go to the prize box and I LOVE to send them there! Each time a student demonstrates exceptional behavior, I ask them to put a stick in their pocket (6 sticks = 1 prize). What I like about this system is that even if they have had a difficult day and have changed their cards, they can still get a positive by putting a stick. This is great for those students who have trouble letting go and/or "turning it around." I give students sticks for remembering class routines (I always have a few who need to be constantly reminded), following directions, working hard, helping out, being kind, etc... I love to make a big deal about everything good that they do and they feel so good about themselves when I do. It's a win/win situation! 

You can grab a free copy of my Prize Jar labels right over HERE.  
Be sure to display them somewhere visible. This will remind students about what they are working towards. 

Until next time...


Back to School Sillies

Hi Everyone,
I hope you're all doing well! I'm doing great! I have been going crazy, getting ready for the new school year and had the best first week with the kiddies! Thought I'd stop by and share a few silly tidbits about our first four days together. It's looking like it's going to be a fabulous year!

I have such a great group this year and am so excited to get things going 
and just, well, HAVE A BLAST!

So here is a short silly post about the first week!

My colleague and I nominated ourselves as members of the newly founded Bulletin Board Committee (we are the founders - hehe). Basically, we are prepared to make our school beautiful!!!!

Here is our very first bulletin board for the year. It is the first thing people see when they enter the building from the main entrance and will soon be filled with class pictures :)

We love it and can't wait to decorate more bulletin boards around the school. 

On our first day with the kiddies, we drank some of Babbling Abby's Jitter Juice. It was delicious and got rid of all our first day jitters. What a great first day activity. Her pack has so many cute ideas and fun ice breakers. 

I displayed Jennifer's (from First Grade Blue Skies) Edible Banners for Back to School and the kiddies loved them. They felt so welcomed and it created an instant sense of belonging and community. I plan on editing them all year round and possibly turning it into an achievement bunting banner! 

Another activity we did to foster a sense of community and togetherness was to sign our class "mural." We used Crayola Window Writers and created a wonderful display for our classroom. 

I also gave my kiddies a fun first day gift. 

We read the book as a class and the kiddies loved the personalized note :)
The bracelet says Sensational Second Grader and they are still sporting them this week!

On Friday, we wrote about our first week in second grade and had a Back to School Party! 
Hey, I'm happy to be back at school! I love teaching second grade!

Ok, now for the sillies... 
I MAY have been annoyed with the cobwebs and grass blades that were lying on my window sills outside my classroom... And, I MAY have used my snow brush (from my car) to clean them... And my friend MAY have gotten it all on camera! 

And one last silly... One of my sweet, adorable, students drew a picture of MOI and NAILED IT! Especially the sock bun. Yes, I do have that much hair!

This sums up my first, A-M-A-Z-I-N-G week of school! Looking forward to more fun this week.

Until next time...

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