Friday, February 24, 2012

Permimssion to Pin

If you find an idea you like on my blog you have my permission to Pin It. Read more about the terms of use for pinning and Pinterest here Happy Pinning from my blog to YOU!

*More pictures of my classroom coming this weekend.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Bulletin Boards and Class Tour Pt. 1

 Outside my classroom - looking down the hall.  The green represents 3rd grade.  It's our color.

The above bulletin board was created by my student teacher and I.  The resources and ideas come from Amy Lemons.  We have it up for Black History Month.  We read George Washington Carver: Peanut Wizard during shared reading.  After talking about George Washington Carver for a week, the students wrote biographies about him (peanut men).  The peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are How To's.  On the peanuts we wrote titles that GWC had: teacher, inventor, etc.  There are also a few peanuts that have quotes from GWC.  My staff has given us so many compliments ~ so thanks Amy!

 This was pinspired.  We changed it a little bit.  Our school is an IB School and we have corresponding Learner attitudes and profiles that we incorporate into daily routine.  The attitudes I wrote on the snowflakes: tolerance, responsibility, etc.
The snowmen (see below) have the learner profiles: risk-taker, knowledgeable, thinker, etc.   
 I used this bulletin board for Kindergarten registration and visiting families to our school.

Part of becoming an IB school means that we need to take our curriculum and from it develop 6 transdisciplinary themes over the next 3 years.  So we have a social studies unit that we teach in government.  We took that unit and per IB made it more inquiry based, etc.  Our students this week have been researching different types of governments around the world.  These are the posters they made and used during their presentations.
 View of my classroom from the door.  My students are in groups - for the most part.  I have two big groups of 7 (one here to your immediate right and the other one across the room).  Then I have a small group of 3 in the middle.  My student teacher likes to have those little darlings close to her.  Then (you can't see them now) there are two students who get to sit off by themselves.  I have 19 kiddos. 
Lunch Count Spot
Magnetic Bathroom Passes are from Beyond the Blackboard in Colorado.  The magnetic pockets are from Lake Shore Learning.  The star sticks inside of them are from Beyond the Blackboard.  Anyway, each student has a stick and a pocket.  If they would like hot lunch, they move their stick out of their pocket into the boys or girls pocket down at the bottom.  I have a lunch counter job that does lunch count for me.  
Inquiry Center
So like I said earlier, we are an IB school.  All those attitudes and learner profiles are on the bulletin board.  We refer to them all of the time.  The trifold is for students to put stickies on if they ever want to inquire anything.  The wicker basket has the books that we receive to teach the learner profiles.  For example this month's learner profile is Risk-Taker.  We read Jackie Robinson-Testing the Ice.  The books is about Jackie's father who couldn't swim...and well I won't spoil it, but we talk about how the characters were risk takers.  Then in the beautiful green basket from Target - I ended up using it for the PYP reflection journals.  After we read Jackie Robinson and talked about how the characters were risk-takers, then the students had a journal prompt about how they could be risk-takers in their own lives.  We reflect about the learner attitudes and profiles every month.  The students take this reflection journal with them throughout the course of their time with us.  In fifth grade-they have a pretty cool journal.  

I will put up the rest of the pictures tomorrow.  It is now bed time.  Good night blogging world.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


Classroom News

I finished my  bulletin board based on Amy Lemon's Black History Month Packet  I will very soon be posting pictures of the bulletin board, the use I found for my lime green container, and the tour of my classroom.

Silly Question

So when you leave a comment on someone else's blog....

I see teacher's leave a link to their blog below their name.  How do you do that? Hopefully that question makes sense.  I type my name and e-mail but I don't know how to add the link.  Any help would be appreciated.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Organzing: Right on Target

Like Christina Bainbridge I was so excited after reading Amy @ The Resource Room post that I dropped everything I was doing and ran straight to Target.  Only to be extremely disappointed by the $$ spot.  The shelves were empty.  EMPTY. empty.  Saying those words is making me sad even now as I type it.  THAT HAS NEVER EVER EVER HAPPENED.  I walked around the little section like two or three times in disbelief. 

I did need a few hair items, so I decided to walk around.  While walking around I did find....

The green and aqua bins have had my eye - ever since I read these two posts from Jen @ IHeart Organizing

To store medicine...

For bathroom his and hers....
She posted this after I had already cleaned my linen closet and I really didn't have a use for them.

So tonight I was standing in front of them and a light bulb went off.  My students PYP reflection journals were given to me this year in a box.  They still sit on a shelf in my classroom in a cardboard box.  I could put their journals in this cute little container and that would make my room so adorable.

OMG!  As I was typing about my use for them in the classroom, I LITERALLY just thought of another great use.  I have all of these teacher manuals leaned up against each other that would look adorable in that container!  I need to go to Target and get more!

Sorry for that interruption, anyway the lime green one is going to school because it matches my cupcake pink and lime green color scheme.  You will have to wait and see if I use it for journals or teacher's manuals.  Maybe I will have to go get another one.

The aqua one is staying at home.  At first, I bought it to store hair brushes, blow dryer, flat iron, etc. I was hoping it would sit on the back of my toilet.  But alas, it is too big.  So my next idea was to sit it underneath the sink and store the same items in it.  It is too big to fit under there......
So I still have to find something to store my brushes and hair stuff in.  Currently they are all lying on top of the bathroom sink - making it look cluttered and nasty.  Any suggestions?

So this is my current use for the aqua container.


It currently has the flashlight, coupons, and a few other odds and ends that I haven't had time to sort out yet.  

Moving on to the red fruit organizer that you saw in the above picture.  Target has the cutest color coordinated kitchen decor.  Orange, white, black, red, teal wine racks, table cloths, containers, fruit bowls, cereal bowls, etc.  While I wanted to grab one of everything, my budget allowed me to only buy what was immediately necessary.  Nathan and I both eat a lot of fruit, and this is how it had been stored....


I really like the red.  When we actually have a house, I hope to have a red and white kitchen.

Moving on to the school supplies....

 Clipboard on the front with notepad inside!
 Expanding File folder
Both of the above items are part of a newer collection that I have seen called contemporary designs.  They have two sets: the orange and pink style you see above or a gray with blues and greens.  They have binders that come with cute dividers, file folders, clipboards, clipboard with notepads, sticky note holders, tape dispensers, pencil holders.  All cute and matchy.  I grabbed these two things out of necessity, but I sure do wish I could afford to completely renovate my desk!

I have several notebooks from Vista print, notepads from the Target Dollar spot, and other planners that I have taken with me in the past to staff meetings.  But when I saw this clipboard/notepad combination thing today - I automatically thought of how organized I could be at the staff meeting at 7:30 a.m. tomorrow!  I am a sucker for cute, colorful school supplies.  

The expanding file folder is going to accompany this beauty..
 Now if I had been thinking logically instead of acting out of pure excitement, I would've gotten the grey, blue and greet scheme to match my bag.  But oh well. 
So the file folder will semi-replace my color folders per inspiration from this CFC post

All the colorful notebooks you see above were on clearance for $1 at Target.  I love all the bright colors - I got one in every design.  They are just composition notebooks, and I currently have no idea what I will use them for.  Your ideas and suggestions are welcome.  I just had to have them!

The next item I didn't get today.  I got a few weeks ago at Target for $12.  As usual I see a blog post or a pin and I get inspired.  This particular item was inspired by a post I had seen on I <3 Organizing about using Pottery Barn's home organization system to organize keys, mail, etc.  Nathan and I are so bad about sorting mail and just leaving it in a pile, so I picked this up....
Hanging on the wall above new aqua basket...

So here is my running total for today's shopping experience

Lg Weave Green & Teal Baskets   $ 9.99 ea
Red Fruit Basket  $12.99
Composition Notebooks  $1 ea
Expanding File Folder $10.99
Clip-pad  $5.99

Again, it's not as cheap as buying from the Dollar spot, but I am very happy with the organization tools I got.  Tomorrow I go back to school.  Hopefully I will remember to take pictures of the classroom and whatever I use the green container for.  Stay tuned....

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Teacher Bag Linky Party!

Clutter Free Classroom is a great website that can help you organize and de-clutter your student's learning space.  It's awesome!  

Anywho ~ they are hosting a teacher bag linky party and considering I just got a new teacher bag, I thought I would have to participate!

This is a link that is similar to my old teaching bag.  

I would show you a picture, but this tote is currently at school.  I use my Land's End tote to carry the books for a Gretchen Courtney professional development I am attending.  The PD is 10 days over the course of the year, and there are several reading resources that I store in this tote.  Maybe I will remember to take a picture when I am at school.

Moving on to the most exciting part!  My new Thirty-One Organizing Utility Tote!

 I decided to put my new name on it so I wouldn't have to a year from now when I get married. 

I love this particular tote because it has two pockets on the front and back.  I keep by Vera Bradley Coin Purse and my cell phone in the front two pockets you see.  There are two similar pockets on the bag.  Then on both sides there is a spot for a water bottle~ which I love and utilize.

Inside my bag....

Items in My Bag
1.  MY I CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT Erin Condren Planner.  If you have seen her stuff - check it out.  I love it.  In this planner I keep track of all dates, responsibilities, teacher and non-teacher.

2.  My Vera Bradley Coin Purse  I carry this with money and my driver's license so I don't have to bring my purse to school.

3.  My Vera Bradley E-Reader Sleeve  (the purple flowery thing).  This holds my Kindle which I keep with me.  Currently I have a student teacher so I've been reading a lot.  

4.  My 31 Fold-N-Go Organizer  I love that it matches my bag.  It has a notepad inside.  It also has a couple pockets that hold scissors, whiteout, a hole punch.  I keep it to take notes and hold other school supplies that are awkward to carry.

5.  My 31 Pencil Pouch.  This carries sharpies, markers, pencils, pens, and other things that I need for grading.  Once again, I love that it matches my bag!

6.  My grading folders.  The blue is everything that needs to be grade.  The red is everything that is graded but has not been entered.  The orange is everything that has been entered but needs to be handed back.  

7.  My grading notebook.

8.  Bottled water!

Note:  Typically I bring home my binder that has my typed up lesson plans in it.  However, I currently have a student teacher, so that's at school.

I also bring this lovely beauty to school with me everyday!
My Thirty-One Lunch Tote!

So if you are like me and obsess over finding the coolest new ways to organize head on over!

** Stay tuned for an update on wedding plans, pictures from our BHM bulletin board, and pictures of my classroom that I  never put up at the beginning of the year.