Friday, June 28, 2013


So I hear and keep reading that Google Reader is going by the way side. I am guessing everyone is pretty much moving to
Since I have, what Michelle, from Apples and ABC's, taught me is called, FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out)  and I don't want to lose readers, here goes.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Throwback Thursday 06/20/13: Writing

Happy Thursday!
I couldn't pass up the chance to link up with the fabulous Cara from The First Grade Parade for a super fun linky party...
Throwback Thursday: an ode to old blog posts. :)
I picked one of my fave posts, but also a popular one.
Enjoy your reading!
**********Original post published on August 30, 2012**********

Writing: How it works in my room...

I have been trying to write this post for SEVERAL days now with out success, until now. It seems like I don't have a lot of free time at the moment, but I am MAKING myself stop and write this post. :)

I'll start back with at my Writers Bulletin Board.
I have the writing process displayed with posters explaining what to do at each step. Because of my surfing theme this year I am calling my kids Wave Writers. Kind of cheesy I know. Side note... I love that huge pencil with the reasons why writers write. :) Anyway...
I am using the ribbon with clothes pins to display where my students are in the writing process. They will be responsible for moving these clips and I will use them to help me conference with my students during Writing.
Next, we move on to the 6 traits. Oh boy these are not easy for my ELL kids. They are not as concrete as the writing process and we get a bit lost some times. I am hoping this will help us keep it together this year.
  I did not staple these down. Rather I attached them with a paper clip hung on a push pin. When I teach Ideas trait, I will move it and place it next to the "We are learning about..." sheet. Then when I move to the Organizations trait, I will switch them out.
I also plan to add mini versions of my districts anchor charts, but I don't have them yet. :/ I will update when I do get and laminate them.

On to my writers storage and supplies.
This is what the front of my room looks like. Right under my white board I have this sweet little set up, that took me forever to think through. I had the custodian take the bottom legs off of 2 desks to make it just the right size. :) And I have extra storage in the desks. I am thinking of either turning them around or adding some fabric/ table skirt to cover it up. For now it isn't bugging me too much.
The purple crate houses our writing paper. I wish I had a close up shot of it. The red hanging folders house the Kinder writing paper, the blue is for 1st grade and the green is for 2nd and 3rd grade. My students never have to ask permission to get paper during writing time and this works great. Then I can conference in peace. I have some updated versions of my writing paper for each grade level so look for that coming soon.

The crates house my 1st, 2nd and 3rd graders binders. Can't tell you how happy I am to be back to binders. We had a donation last year of gently used binders from an office building and I snatched them up. However, if your looking for a multiple pocket folder go here and here for a quick fix.
My kinder kids still use 2 pocket folders and they are housed in one of the drawers of my 3 drawer cart. On top of that cart, I have my extra writing supplies. Everything from pencils, to erasers, sharpeners, staplers, even some Popsicle sticks to make our spaghetti and meatball spaces. MY students are allowed to go here at any time to replenish their supplies. No need to ask.
Can you see that I added some fun tissue paper to the bottom of my pencil buckets? I hate when they get marked up from the pencil lead. I am so OCD, I think I have a problem. :P

Finally, a shot of my Word Wall. Obviously it is not up on the wall yet. Still waiting on the district people to come in and drill it to the wall.
 I went with the 2 tone paper again. I like how it separates each letter and that is so important for my kids. Especially when I start adding words for 4 different grade levels. Yikes.

So a freebie for you...
Below you will find links to writing folder cover sheets.
We use these in the front of our binders so that I can easily distinguish, by color what grade it is. 
Kinder Writing Cover
 1st Grade Writing Cover
2nd Grade Writing Cover
3rd Grade Writing Cover
4th Grade Writing Cover
5th Grade Writing Cover
General Writing Cover 
For my kinder kids who use a 2 pocket folder, I will glue their sheet to the front of their writing portfolio. I will collect all their writing at the end of every quarter and store it in there.

A few things have changed in my room since then, like the word wall did finally make it up on the wall and I added tons of posters around it. Here are some updated pics, that you can also find on my 
 However, most of it stayed the same! I plan to share updates at the start of this year when we return.
Be sure to join in the fun and link up with Cara.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Finally Made it Monday Organization

Happy sunny day everyone!
I am excited because I finally get to link up with Tara's Monday Made It Linky. This is something I have wanted to do for MONTHS.
Edit: Just realized I can also link up with one of my fave bloggers, Kristen, as well as Elizabeth and their Optimum organization linky too!

If you are anything like me you've already started thinking about what you want to purchase for Back to School in August, or in my case July. We go back in early August so my shopping is all wonky. But seriously before school even let out I went through my supplies and took note of what I had an abundance of, spiral notebooks, and what I was going to have to purchase for the next school year. I made a mental list but well with all that I had going on who knows what I will remember.
About a week ago I started to go through my catalogs to highlighted, circled and scribble all over the items I wanted to purchase or just use for inspiration. I do this several times. First I mark everything I want. Second go through I mark everything I REALLY want and would actually USE. Finally, I go through it all again, one last time and mark the items I can afford and will actually purchase. I am lucky enough that I work in a district that will reimburse me for quite of a bit of my purchases, so I try to stay under that amount, which is a nice amount. :)
Once that is all done I start to make lists. I LOVE lists. I love writing them down and feel even better when I get to cross the item off the list! Normally I do this in a notebook but this year I wanted something I could take with me to the store. Plus it gave me an opportunity to make it cute!
I made two lists, one for items to purchase in store, like Target, Walmart, Office Depot, craft stores, etc... The second list if for items to purchase online, like Amazon, Creative Teaching Press, TPT, Teachers Notebook, etc... Then I thought, what if I there were OTHER stores not on this list, so I created a blank one, where you put the store name in.
Click on the image to enlarge.
Click here to Download

Of course I thought that some might not be into the chevron, or just simply want to save ink. So I made a set that is chevron free.
Click on the image to enlarge.

Needless to say that I am in the process of printing mine out to start filling in soon. Look out next week for a regular "to do" list, cause well I use a million of those too! Don't forget to go check out all the other fabulous #ModayMadeIt & #OptimumOrganization posts.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Currently: June Edition

Happy June everyone...
Hope you had a great start to the month. Here is my June installment of Farley's Currently
Don't forget to hop on over to Farley's blog and read all the other fun Currently's that are up right now.