Saturday, May 31

What Worked.... and What Didn't

I love that Stephanie from Teaching in Room 6 decided to share this linky! It is a perfect reflection for the end of the year!

Teaching in Room 6

What Worked

Math Rotations
This was my first full year of math rotation implementation and it went so smoothly! We went over behavior expectations at the beginning of the year and practiced each rotation together. This really helped classroom management. My students soared in math this year and it was definitely their favorite part of every day!

I used the service, Remind101 to keep in contact with my parents this year. It was soooo easy and the communication was so clear and constant! I had a teacher's kiddo in my classroom this year and she is planning on using it with her parents next year because she loved it so much as a parent! I just put all the info on the screen during Meet the Teacher at the beginning of the year and wala.... easy communication all year!

Teacher Toolkit
I do not have a teacher desk in my room. It takes up so much precious space. I have a table for my computer and then I use my horseshoe table when I really need to spread out. With the absence of a desk I did not have a spot for my everyday supplies. Enter the teacher toolbox. I am sure you have seen it all over Pinterest, but if you haven't bought into it here is your push.... do it! I had everything at my fingertips and I did not have to waste space with a big ol' desk! Oh and did I mention that it is cute? Love cute!

What Didn't

Writer's Workshop
We started the year so strong with Writer's Workshop. We were integrating our grammar, free writing, working through the process... it was great! Then something happened, and writing got pushed to the back burner. I have do idea how, it was not a conscious decision on my part, but it did happen and next year I will not let it happen again. I have bought some resources and have big plans to be even more prepared and ready.
Parent Communication Blunder - Website
So I went all techie this year and started a class website for the first time... gasp! Since I had this beautiful website, I didn't need to send home a weekly newsletter right? Wrong! I so dropped the ball in keeping up with the website and I could really tell a difference in parent communication and involvement when my poor parents weren't getting that weekly update. So next year I am even more determined with my classroom website... it will happen... but I am also going to do the weekly newsletter to send home. I thought I could also put it on my website. 
I love reflecting because I know I can improve every year. Next year I will be better than this year!
Teach On!

Friday, May 30

Five for Friday Linky Party

Today is my first official, nothing to do, no where to be, day of summer! So what do I do? Make plans with everybody and fill my day with a pedicure, cook outs, and dinner with friends. But isn't that what summer is about? Here are my five for a SUMMER Friday!

Drinking coffee out of a regular mug and not a travel mug. Oh the little things. ;)

Summer reading for pleasure...

Summer reading for school...

Pedicure! I'm thinking something like this...
from Pinterest

Lastly... cook out! I am making Apple Salad Snickers Salad. Here are the ingredients. 
Your mouth is watering already... I know it. :)

I'm really getting into the whole Instagram thing... a tad behind, I know... but I need some new followers and I would love if you would follow me! So I'll make a deal... follow me and I'll follow you right back!

Teach On!

Wednesday, May 28

New and Improved! Flash Freebie!!

Many of you have read about how I teach math in my classroom. Math rotations are my favorite part of everyday! Well, my rotations are now new and improved!! I have added a fourth rotation for 2 reasons. Numbero uno... the new rotation is write about math because explaining and proving your answers is such an important aspect of common core and of student understanding! I want my students writing about their math problems and using math vocabulary each and every day. Numbero dos... unfortunately we are having a little money crisis here in Oklahoma... any one else?... and my district had to cut back on teachers, which means.... bigger class sizes. Booo! So with 26-28 kiddos in my room next year, I have to have more groups so that they are still effective. But even with a smaller class size, can you imagine how wonderful even smaller groups could be??

Math Rotations

I am lucky enough to be presenting at a district workshop tomorrow on this very topic! Wish me luck! My btf (best teaching friend) Darin, who is A-MAZ-ING is presenting with me. I wanted to share our slides with you all in case they could be of help!

I also want to give as many of my new product away as possible!! So... flash freebie! Ready... set... go! It will be free through Friday evening... so don't wait!

Teach On!

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Monday, May 26

New Products and GIVEAWAY!!

Well this ended up being quite the project! But... it is complete! I have created simplistic, easy to read, I Can Statements for every 3rd grade standard. This includes all ELA and Math standards. I have also created them for the Science and Social Studies standards for my Oklahoma friends! Here are a few shots of the product:

I wanted them to be simple so that they were easy for my students to read with no distracting pattern or design. They could also be customized to your classroom decor by printing them on colored paper. Printing each domain on a different color would work too! Here they are at work in my classroom:

I also love my organization system. When trimmed, they perfectly fit in a small, expandable file folder, like this one from office depot. I have included the labels I used here in the product. When I take out a standard, I put a sticky in its place. When I return the standard, I know exactly where it belongs!

I really enjoy the simplicity of this product and how it helps my students take ownership of what they are learning. You can find this product in my TPT store, but since it is new, it definitely needs to be given away... so... here comes a GIVEAWAY! I will be giving away the ELA and Math Bundled I Can Statements! If you win and you are from Oklahoma and would like the Science and Social Studies as well, please just let me know when you get your winnings! The giveaway will be open now through Thursday night! Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Teach On!

Saturday, May 24

My Ten Things for Summer!

I am linking up with Deanna Jump to share my to do list... because we all know that summer is just the time to get the things done that you want to do during the year and don't get to! And you thought we had the summer off... HA! :)

*ONE* Most of all, I want to really get my blog off the ground. I had not committed to it until the end of this school year and now it is very important to me to get going! If you have any advice or tips, please let me know! Learning from other teachers is one of my favorite past times. Be a better teacher tomorrow is my motto!

*TWO* Reorganize my classroom library on the to do list. It might involve some help from Ladybug's Teacher Files and her Editable Genre Library Labels. I love the bright colors!

*THREE* Create fluency tubs! I love this idea from Fourth and Ten. She created multiple tubs with fluency activities in each and rotates them. I want to adapt this idea for both math and reading. I definitely post on these! (another goal...)

*FOUR* Visit my parents! My parents are moving to Madison, Wisconsin this summer! They are currently in San Antonio and we are from Dallas originally, so this is a huge change for us all! I am so excited to be visiting Madison. I have heard about great food, music, farmers' markets, and mild summers! Please tell me if you have any suggestions if you are from or have been to the area.PI want to see and experience it all!

*FIVE* I have volunteered to develop my school's mentor teacher program. We don't have a lot in place right now, other than assigning a new teacher to an existing one and calling it done. I really have a passion for encouraging and helping new teachers and I want to put a system in place to do just that. What do you do to mentor new teachers at your school?

*SIX* Mentor Sentences! I love the model of grammar instruction introduced to me by Jivey. I love how when using mentor sentences students see good examples of grammar. So often they see incorrect uses and are asked to correct it. This is not a bad method, but if incorrect is all they ever see... how will they ever improve. Mentor sentences looks at great uses of grammar and then improves upon it! I want to implement this method of grammar instruction next year!

*SEVEN* PLC Conference! I love conferences so much! We get to learn and have fun with our co-workers. What could be better?!? Some of my closest friends and I will be heading to St. Charles, Missouri to learn how to better communicate and collaborate. 

*EIGHT* Get ready to move into our new house! YAY! Our closing date is currently end of August... I am crazy I know. Who moves the first few weeks of school? This crazy gal... that's who. So I need to spend this summer getting as ready as possible. I see many boxes in my future...

*NINE* Get 10 new products on TPT. It is ambitious for a newbie like me... but I have many products
that just need a finishing touch and they will be ready to share. I think you will like them. :)

*TEN* RELAXATION! For me this looks like:




Sunday, May 4

Measurement and Data Collection Fun!!

The end of the year is upon us! Summer time... or as we teachers know it... the time to catch up on all the things I want to do through out the year and don't have time for. :) My list is long for sure!

Well, in these last few weeks I wanted to have some fun and make some memories with my kiddos. I was inspired by a great product I stumbled upon last week. Sabra over at Teaching with a Touch of Twang, posted her Fiesta Balloons idea! I loved it!

One of the activities is to have a Bubble Gum Contest. I decided that I wanted to take this fun idea a step further and incorporate some math skills. Out came Bubble Gum Olympics!

I've design this to be a fun, hands-on activity to review organizing and analyzing data as well as measurement. It's a way to have fun with your kiddos at the end of the year, while doing some much needed review!

Click on the above picture or head to my store to check it out! Remember there is a sale going May 6-7 and my products will be 28% off. Take advantage of the discount!

Remember, as we near the end...

Keep Calm and Teach On!
~ Rachel