Tuesday, November 12, 2013

My 1st Linky Party

We Are THANKful Linky Party!

I decided to join my first Linky Party.  And...I'm arriving fashionable late.  So I will play catch up and post both Monday's & today's ideas.  I have always loved so many of these ladies blogs as a go-to for ideas and tips.  Now they are joining forces as Blog Hoppin, and having a 'We Are Thankful' Linky Party.

We Are THANKful for:


Every time I turn around, my job has another great technology resource available.  But with the excitement, along comes the dreaded need for ANOTHER userID and password.  I try to keep my login information as close to each other as possible but I began to lose track after my list of various resources continued to grow.  I can only imagine that I was complaining about it one day to a fellow colleague and she showed me her list.  A-ha!!  Why didn't I think of that?  So I created a word document that had a list of all the school resources we have usernames and passwords for and I keep it on my "Handy Dandy" Clipboard.  
 Of course, it is clipped to one of my clipboards that has several other important documents and so it get's lost in the stack.  So -- I added a small, blue paper clip to it on it's lower right hand corner and it allows my fingers to find that specific page in a quick second when I am logging on to BrainPopJr or some other great resource.

Helpful Hints

#1 - "Handy Dandy" Clipboards
Let's refer back to those "Handy Dandy" clipboards I mentioned above.  I had a colleague that always to carry around a clipboard.  She kept lots of various important lists, schedules, forms, etc.  I started with just one and my clipboard fascination has evolved to 4 this year.  I found some really cute animal print clipboards at Walmart this summer and grabbed them.  Each clipboard holds certain important things I might need in hand quickly.  This has allowed me to not have to dig through piles to find these items (which was something you might see me do often before).  One clipboard holds my lesson plan, class schedule, class list, student ID numbers, transportation info, my login document, and other VIP papers that pertain to my daily needs.  I have another clipboard that I keep records of grading, rubrics, check-off sheets, class-at-a-glance assessment/progress scores, etc.  The third clipboard holds all the documents my students and I use to keep our Classroom Economy/Behavior Management System running smoothly.  The last one has been used as my schedule & information for volunteers that come into the classroom to help.  I'm pretty sure I could find uses for more, however that is what I am using right now.  

#2 Math Fact Rings
Another helpful tidbit that I can't believe I didn't start before is my fact card rings.  I saw a pin for this idea over the summer, so I created some printable flash cards.  I keep them stored on binder rings by sets.  The students check out the set they are working on and keep it hung on a hook I put on their desk.  They can grab the ring of flash cards at any point in the day when they are finished with assignments.  This allows for practice all throughout the day and it is differentiated for their focus at that time.

#3 Baskets on Desks
I'm sure most teachers have some sort of set up with materials on table groups.  In the past, I have had community supplies as well as individual supplies.  I have now evolved to having some community and some individual.  For example, they each store their own crayons, colored pencils, scissors, and markers in their desks but I have collected all the dry erase markers and pink erasers.  I put these in the baskets on each table group and they use them as they need to.  But the best part about my baskets is the sets of books I keep out.  My class has their own book bag with books from the classroom library they have checked out for the week.  They are always welcomed to grab their bags for reading when they have down time.  However, I have found that they love to also just grab a book from the baskets.  I have several books on various levels and various genres.  I also include the science readers that our district discontinued a few years ago.  My kiddos really do sometimes just dive into the various readers at their table and love to share what they find in them like vocabulary words, spelling patterns, and other concepts we've covered.


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