No Time to Reinvent the Wheel! I Appreciate You!

You work hard.

Your day is comprised of SO much more than teaching curriculum. Instilling smarts into your little peep's minds is just a fraction of your job.

This career path is not easy. But no one said it would be. We definitely didn't choose this avenue in life for it's ease.

It IS amazingly rewarding! Even if that reward is not a financial one.

Teaching speaks to your creativity and enthusiasm. It answers your need to help and spread love and compassion.

The dedication it requires leaves you exhausted, yet fulfilled.

The only thing it doesn't offer is time. There simply is never enough time. The struggle is real.

Writing and Grammar Assessments SIMPLIFIED

Grading writing can be a cumbersome process. Often the tools teachers are given to assist in this feat are lacking, unclear, or simply make things more difficult than seems necessary.

My colleagues and I have struggled with poor writing rubrics FOR.EV.ER.  Poor rubrics have absolutely been our greatest challenge in grading student writing.

Then I decided enough was enough.

S'more Syllable Fun - Use Your Jaw!

Do your kids ever do this? Time and time again I find that my little peeps struggle when they try to "clap the syllables" or tap their "head/shoulders/hips" to find the syllables. They've been taught this technique by previous teachers and it works ok. But when you're a beginning reader and are just diving into the craziness that is PHONICS, those techniques aren't very accurate. It can make things a little difficult when you are trying to sound out words.

Write About It!

Sometimes all we need is a little inspiration to spark a whole lot of creativity.

Some of the most fun "writing prompts" I use in class are picture prompts. The wackier, the better!

The pictures allow for the kids to provide a lot of detail and interesting "facts" describing the what and the why of each picture.

I add fun pictures that I find online to one of my boards on Pinterest.

Reflections of 2015

I cannot believe it's time for our annual reflections linky party!

I honestly cannot believe it's already mid December. But I'll take it! Yay for winter break and no alarm clock!

Kristin, Hadar and I are reflecting on our favorite things for 2015 and hope you join us! Here are a few of my favorite memories of 2015.

Become a Sight Word Hero!

I have a kiddo who is really struggling to reach grade level standards. Unfortunately he didn't attain all that he should have last year and the riggers of first grade curriculum are quite challenging. We've been working hard and he now has a pretty great grasp on consonant sounds - that dang Y causes some problems - and is getting a surer foot with short vowels.

Holiday Customs Around the World

Our first trimester of school has come to an end. That always signals the beginning of "hectic season". 

Those weeks from Thanksgiving until winter break are always so busy. It's tough to fit everything in. PLUS the kiddos are ready for that break. Fitting in our social studies standards regarding customs and traditions during this holiday time couldn't be more perfect. It keeps them engaged. No reason to try and divert their minds from where it is already wandering... it's time to embrace the holidays.

Differentiation and Stem

Carson Dellosa recently sent me a couple of products to try out in my classroom.
I was excited to add them to my lesson plans in October.

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