Thursday, July 23, 2015

#tbt

Hi Lovies! It is #tbt over at Freebielicious!
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Here is my #throwbackthursday….
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Oh.. It isn’t a picture we are supposed to throwback?! A Post?! Okay, I have that too. Last January I posted over in Freebielicous about moving to Great Expectations and getting rid of my Clip Chart.
 
 
At the beginning of the school year, our new principal brought in Great Expectations. For those of you unfamiliar with GE, it is an approach to better the whole child, not just a quick behavior fix. After a year of implementation, I am loving it! This program was how my mom taught, and she has been out of the classroom for about 15 years. It is constant, but there have been a few tweaks here and there.
 
In about October our school had a trainer come in to talk to the whole school. About this time, our Primary team had been discussing getting rid of our behavior charts. So going into this meeting I was very nervous about what was going to come up. In the meeting, what I expected did happen. We decided to throw ourselves out there and get rid of our clip charts.
 
Cold Turkey.
 
I am not going to lie, I was a nervous wreck! I will be starting my 6th year in three weeks, and I have had a clip chart all of those years. I plastered this quote all across my room and reminded myself multiple times a day.
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After our team meeting, I went directly to my classroom, and took down my pretty clip chart, and took it to my principals office. I left her a note that said, “Don’t let me have this back!” I went on with my day with my kiddos and not one kid noticed it was gone. It actually took a few days before my kids realized it was gone.
 
Have I mentioned that my principal is amazing? She came to me afterschool, and told me I didn’t have to take my clip chart down if I was uncomfortable with it. I knew that, but I wanted to try something new. I explained to her our thinking. I was quick to say “Go Clip Down” when someone did something that was not okay. I wasn’t explaining to them what they were doing wrong, or allowing them to think it through. I also had noticed that the same kids were always the ones on pink, the same ones were always on green and the same were always on yellow. And I wasn’t consistent with moving kids up.  (And yes I am aware that this falls on my shoulders)
 
Don’t get me wrong, I loved my clip chart! I loved how all my kids worked hard to clip up. I could easily see who had been having a bad day. But so could everyone else.
 
What did I replace it with? Are you listening?
 
Nothing.
 
I didn’t replace my clip chart with anything. We went about our day. When one of my kiddos needed redirection we went back to our Eight Expectations. Let me better explain the 8 Expectations. In all of our classrooms we have Eight Expectations posted, and we go over them every morning.
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There they are, front and center in my classroom. We say them each morning after our pledges and moment of silence. Then we go right into our classroom expectations. Then the Give me Five song.

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When ever one of my kiddos are not making a good choice, I just remind them of which Classroom Expectation they need to work on. So if I hear a students making fun of another one of their friends, I remind them “Sarah, Expectation #2 says, We do not laugh at or make fun of a persons mistakes”. They quickly apologize.
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What is even better, when I am working with a small group, and I over hear my friends remind one another of the expectations. Warms this teachers heart!
 
Here are the 8 Classroom Expectations
 
  1. We will value one another as unique and special individuals.
  2. We will not laugh at or make fun of a person's mistakes nor use sarcasm or putdowns.
  3. We will use good manners, saying "please," "thank you," and "excuse me" and allow others to go first.
  4. We will cheer each other to success.
  5. We will help one another whenever possible.
  6. We will recognize every effort and applaud it.
  7. We will encourage each other to do our best.
  8. We will practice virtuous living, using the Life Principles.


The one thing I missed about my clip chart was the ability of clipping up. Rewarding those kids who were making good choices. What I love about our school is we do “Dog Bucks” school wide.
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Anytime you catch a kiddo making a good choice they get a dog buck. Our PE teacher hands them out, our Librarian does, our Custodian. Are you getting the picture? All the Adults in our building pass out Dog Bucks when our kids are making a good choice.
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My kiddos hold on to their Dog Bucks until they get 5, then I staple them together and keep them in a box. Every Friday, we get them out, count by fives to see how many we have as a class and mark it on a chart.
Then the kids can take their bucks to the “Dog Store” where they can buy pencils, extra recess, sock day, extra center time. This allows all kids to get rewarded for their behaviors. Especially since I can give the whole class a buck.

I know that not all behavior plans work for every teacher, and every set of kids. This is what is working for me and my kiddos.
 
I have shared my Eight Classroom Expectations and the Dog Bucks over on TpT. Go check them out here and here! While you are at it! Go look around Great Expectations and see if it is a good fit for you!!
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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Wonderful Idea Wednesday

Howdy Y’all!! Are you as impressed as I am, that I have blogged THREE days in a row? (Technically four, I blogged over at Freebielicious on Sunday!) Anywho, today is
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and I am sharing a wonderful idea that Mary O’Connell shared over at Simply Kinder’s facebook page! It was one of those, duh-Kaci, why didn’t you think of that moments!!


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I have always slapped a label on ANYTHING that belongs to a kiddo. I have always used one on their crayons. But that didn't solve the problem of the bottom flap coming undone and crayons flying EVERYWHERE. This kills two birds with one stone, or two problems with one label! 

What a brilliant idea! Thanks Mary!!



Head on over to Freebielicious’ blog to check out some more Wonderful Ideas!! Ill see ya back here tomorrow for #tbt

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Monday, July 20, 2015

Must Have Monday

Hi Friends!! I am so glad you are here!! It is Monday, and I am enjoying my summer break. I have been to school TWICE this summer, for a grand total of 5 minutes. I literally walked in the other day to drop off some stuff, and turned around and walked out. I went yesterday to grab some stuff to work on (It is still in my car) Needless to say, I have loved every second of this summer.


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Anywho, so today I am linking up with the girls over at Freebielicious. We are posting the Summer Fun linky, so make sure to head over there to see what everyone is up to!!


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Must Have Monday. Last week I posted about some necessary items for your kindergarten classroom.


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So today, I thought I would share some more of my Must Haves!!


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(and right now this store is closed temp so she can complete B2S orders, so make sure to go favorite it so you know when she returns!)



This apron has lasted me 4 years in Kindergarten. I love love love my apron!! I spoke so highly of it, that my teaching partner bought it too! I carry around my markers, bucks, markers, my iPod for my timer and student picker. And did I mention markers? And when I am not wearing this apron, I am wearing this one.


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I bought this after seeing them in Vegas last year. My kids LOVED it!! I put our word families in the pockets and they had to read one every time we left a room like an exit ticket. It was amazing! And the kids LOVED it! I saw that she is getting ready to have ones with, wait for it …. TUTUs!! I die! I will be getting one as SOON as they become available!!


My second MUST HAVE item is one that you have heard me talk about before. Like all the time. Like I would die if I didn’t have one.


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My Cameo. I love it so much I just bought a new one last Tuesday. I can not wait for it to get here!! I use it to make all the things for my classroom. Here are a few pics of things I made last year.


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Another thing that I am head over heels in love with (and need to order since I have three weeks before I go back!) Are SitSpots!


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The lobsters were where my kiddos would do their centers, and the blue/white/red dots were their “dotspots” where they lined up at the door. And the apples had two purposes. Some of them were at the front of the room with sight words or letters on them. And then they were in the back of the room, at my desk/table and the kids had to wait on an apple to talk to me. They could not pass the red line, unless it was their turn. It kept 20 kiddos from being behind my desk all the time….


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If you have been following my social media the past two weeks, you know I had my tonsils removed on the 8th. It is something I wouldn’t wish upon my worst enemy. My throat is STILL sore, almost two weeks later. *squirrel moment* Anyway, I did some damage to my PayPal acct while I was on pain meds, and one of my purchases, I can not believe I have lived so long with out it!


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I bought the Vera Bradley “Get Carried Away Tote” and I am IN LOVE with it!! It fits not only my laptop and my camera, but also my purse, and maybe my dog. It is the perfect teachery tote!!


My last thing that I have to have to keep this teacher happy is her iPad! (And look at how cute that case is! If you click the picture, it has the link to Amazon where I got it!)


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I am not going to sit here and lie to you, that I love my iPad for all the great apps for school. (However, I DO love all the greatness that is for school) But I love this little guys because he has my kindle app. I am a reader…. BIG TIME. (Ask Officer Hofficer, he will back me up!)


I love to read romance novels. I admit it. I love them. I read a couple a week. About one a day during the summer. I will leave you with a list of books that I have read and loved recently.



Well friends- This girl has lots of things to do today! Don’t forget to head over to Freebielicious to check out other bloggers Must Haves!!


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  This post does contain affiliate links. I was not paid to give my opinion, they are my honest feelings! I love every single one of them Smile


Saturday, July 11, 2015

Must Have Supplies in Kindergarten

It is that time of the year when I am starting my back to school shopping! It seems like every summer about the beginning of July, I start going back and seeing what I need. 

There are two kinds of supplies that I need. My student supplies (which for the majority of my kiddos they bring on the first day of school) Then there are the teacher supplies. These are the things that I typically spend my school supply money on. So I went over to Amazon (because lets be honest, with Prime, why would I shop any place else?!) And took note of all the things that I have bought for school. 





My number one thing I think that every kindergarten teacher needs is a laminator. 

I use this bad boy, EVERY DAY. I have one at home and I have one at school. I have gone through so many of these, because I use it all the time. *Side note, I prefer this older version of the Scotch Laminator. The newer one I find I have a harder time running lamination through the slot*


If I am going to have a laminator, I have got to have lamination sheets as well! 


I purchased this brand's 3Mil pouches and they were wonderful!! Unfortunately Amazon no longer carries the 3 mil, so I am buying the 5 mil! I am really excited for the thicker pockets. It will be more durable for my kinderroos!!


The next thing that I order, (even though they are on our school supply lists) We never get enough of them and I like to have a good supply of black Expos.


We use the tar out of these during center rotations, each set of kiddos during a work tub has a dry erase marker. And each of my kiddos has a dry erase marker in their bag for their morning work and their dry erase boards for daily use. So to say we need more than 48 dry erase markers in a year is an understatement!


For centers I use these dry erase pockets. 


I have to buy a new set every year, because they are being used 3-4 times a day. Every day of the year. They get tinted red (even though I do my best to remind them only to use black dry erase markers) they sometimes get sharpies on them instead of dry erase markers. And sometimes they get torn from being used so often. 


Another thing that I can not get enough of (and yes you can call me a pencil snob, that is okay with me) is Ticonderoga pencils.


I bought these January 11th, and we just started to run out in May. This was a heck of a deal!! One I will be repeating!! 


I feel like I should buy stock in cardstock! I swear I go through a ream a week! (This is because I print and laminate both my teaching partners and my centers every week!)


This is the cardstock that I stock up on! It is a great deal, and who can complain that it shows up on your front porch and I don't even have to go to Sams?!



I am afraid to admit how many of these Mr. Sketch smelly markers I actually have!!


I love love love Mr. Sketch markers. They are the only markers that I use. I use them on papers, I use them on Anchor Charts and I use them in staff meetings to take notes.  (I will point out that this is at the beginning of the year, and that tub was FULL of markers!!!


I have bought one of A Modern Teacher's planners for the past two years! 


They are the absolute BEST binders hands down!! I am about ready to buy this cutie this year!




Besides my Mr. Sketch pens, I am obsessed with Flair pens!

I swear I have about a million of these laying around my room, in my purse, in my backpack. They are everywhere!! (But of course I can only find the olive green or yellow when I need them! Never the pink or purple!)


And last but not least. My #1 product I can not live without in my classroom is my Silhouette Cameo!!


I use my Cameo for everything! From my word wall to my bulletin board letters. I am using HTV to make their bags. So they will have ownership of their bags. 

Here are just a few of the things that I used my Cameo to make. (both for my classroom and my personal home decor)






Well those are just a few of the things that I will be stocking up on at Amazon in the upcoming month!  



This post does contain affiliate links to Amazon. However, there is nothing in here that I would not purchase myself for my classroom. I hope you can find something that you need for your room.