Saturday, August 25, 2012

My room is finally finished!

For the most part, that is! Sorry I've been away awhile.  I'm sure you've all been as busy as I have with meetings and to-do lists as I have.  Teachers went back this week for us and the kiddos arrive Monday.  I didn't think I'd be able to get my room ready enough before then without having to come in and work on the weekend, but I pulled it off.  It's mostly thanks to my wonderful hubby who helped me for a day a half doing all the little and unpleasant tasks that take up so much time.  He's a lifesaver! <3

Here are some pictures of my room.  This is a view into my little reading nook area complete with bean bags and pillows.

This is a close-up view of one side of my library with all my newly-categorized books.  This was such a huge pain in the butt that I will NEVER redo this again.  At least not without a few years to work on it!

This is to the left of my library where we walk in the door.  I've got the mailbox and pencil station set up there and the bookshelf has my turn in, pass back baskets, as well as all the student dictionaries and thesauri. 

Here's a quick view from standing in front of the door.  My desk is still messy, but it was the last thing on my priority list, so don't judge!

Here's another view from a front corner of the room.  I hate that portables have no storage.  I literally have nowhere to put anything and I hate my boxes being visible to everyone, but I don't have a solution for that.

Here's my student work board.  I just love how it turned out!  It's probably one of my favorite boards to date.

Here are all my boards on that side of the room.  The center is my job chart wall and on the right is my behavior wall with my clip chart. One thing that is nice about my portable is all the board space.  Classrooms in the building have walls that you can staple into, so they can post thing anywhere.  I at least feel like I'm not wanting for bulletin board space in here.

Here's a picture into my Reading Street area with my Concept Board.  My calendar and lunch count is also over there since I had no where else to put it.  Stupid Reading Street takes up so much space! I'll take better pictures once I have it in use.

Here's the bulletin board I have in the school.  My hubby did the wonderful tree and the owls were made from the free template you can find at my TPT store.

Well, that's about enough of that, I suppose.  It's really overwhelming to think that next year I'll have to start all over since I'm moving in the building (for sure this time!), but it'll be so worth it!

I'm sharing a freebie with the other third grade teachers out there that you can give to your kiddos at the end of the first day of school or any day at the beginning of the year really.  Just sign your name to these notes, copy onto cardstock, cut, and then slide a Dum Dum sucker through the slits.  I'm giving these to my kiddos at the end of the first day.  You can get them from my TPT store by clicking HERE.

I hope you're all getting back into the swing of things and that the year has started smoothly for you all!  I'm excited to finally be back to a routine.  I probably won't do much blogging during the week now that school's starting, but it's definitely my goal to post on the weekends.

Thanks for reading!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Monday Made It #2 and a Giveaway

It's Monday again and I'm joining up with Tara at 4th Grade Frolics for my second Monday Made It.  I spent most of the time in my classroom today organizing all my Reading Street stuff (ugh!) but I did get around to finishing my mailbox.  I "rainbow-fied" it with colored papers and it looks so much brighter and happier now! :)

I forgot to take a before picture, but it was just all blue cardboard like the outside.  Isn't it cute?

I have so much going on this week and still so much to do that I'm feeling a little bit overwhelmed.  Anybody else feeling the same?  I've been working on cataloging and re-organizing my classroom library for days now and I'm only a quarter of the way done. Bleh!  I never thought I'd say this, but maybe I have too many books! My sister-in-law had her baby yesterday and tomorrow I'm going out to dinner with my old 6th grade team.  Thursday is my birthday and then Friday through Sunday my mother-in-law will be staying with us along with our three nieces.  So.....I don't foresee much work being done this week.  I start the 20th and will have to get all this finished somehow.  Never underestimate a teacher under a deadline though!

I also wanted to share a giveaway I came across that is just too tempting not to enter! Meredith and Kim over at Sunshine, Sand and Scissors are having their very first giveaway and it's a doozie!  You can win giftcards galore.  Winners are being announced on my bday, so hopefully I'll get lucky! :) Go check them out HERE!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Back to School Sale!

It's that time of year again!  The TPT site will be having a Back to School sale this Sunday and Monday, August 12-13th.  I will be offering everything in my store at 20% off!  On top of that, TPT will give you another 10% off your total by using the code BTS12 when checking out.  How great is that?  My wishlist is a little too long and I'm looking forward to getting a lot of goodies at a great price!

I'm linking up with Blog Hoppin' to include my store in this linky party.  You can check out my TPT store by clicking HERE.  Happy shopping, everyone! :)

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Owl Birthday Homework Pass

Hey, everyone!  Sorry I've been neglecting the blog world this past week, but it's been C-R-A-Z-Y!  My birthday is coming up, so the hubby and I have been making plans for that.  Any other August birthdays out there?  Mine's on the 16th, along with Madonna's.  There's your fun fact for the day! :) My sister-in-law is also expecting her first baby around that time, she there was a shower for her and my mother-in-law is coming to visit with our three nieces which means major house cleaning.  Phew!

I spent a very productive day (finally) in my classroom today and I'm feeling good now about the start of school.  I still have lots to do, but I've worked a lot over the summer, so I'm much farther than I was this time last year.  I made my birthday bags for my students while getting caught up with Mad Men.  I'm excited to be able to do cutesy stuff like that with my third graders.  I forgot to take a picture, but here's what I included in my bags:
  • 2 pencils (1 'Happy Birthday!' pencil and another random one)
  • 2 erasers (fun-shaped ones like dollar bills and cupcakes)
  • 1 packet of Mister Bubble Bath Fizzies
  • 1 cute sea animal water squirter (You have to see these!  They're absolutely adorable!)
  • 1 homework pass
Since I looove owls, I made a quick owl homework pass and printed them onto colored paper to stick in the bags.  I didn't specify whether students could use the pass for all of that night's homework or just one assignment, so if you use these, that's all up to you!  You can check out these passes in my TPT store for free by clicking on the photo below.

Well, I hope to be back on Monday with some pictures for Monday Made It.  I'm working on rainbow-fying my mailbox and I'm halfway done!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

And the winner is...

Katie S.!!
Check your email Katie! :)

Thank you so much to all of you who entered my first giveaway!  I think it was a great success and I'll be having many more to come!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Fun and Games

Well, lookie here!  It took me months to get to 50 followers and all of a sudden, I've reached the 100 mark.  Welcome to all my newest followers out there.  I'm sooo happy you found me! :)  Just knowing someone is reading really motivates me to be more creative and productive as a teacher.  Not that I didn't always try to be before I blogged, but you know what I mean!  If you haven't entered my fabulous first giveaway yet, check out my previous post and get on it!  There's a few great prizes, one of which is a whopper from 3rd Grade's a Hoot!

I've been working really hard on trying to make my future Reading Street literacy centers more fun and I've (finally) finished two games I'm very proud of!  The first coincides with Unit 1, Week 2 and the second with Unit 1, Week 3.  Of course, these are skills all 3rd graders should know, so you don't have to use Reading Street to benefit from these practice games.

'Fishing for Plurals' is a go fish type game that gives students a chance to practice changing singular nouns to plurals and vice versa.  It focuses on plurals -s, -es, and -ies.  Click on the photo to check it out at my TPT store.

'Around the Bases' was a pain in the butt to make, but out of everything I've made for Reading Street so far, I'm probably most excited to use this with my kiddos.  It's a baseball themed game that gives students a chance to practice using base words (get it, bases? Sorry, I love puns!) with the endings -ed, -ing, -er, and -est.  They get to move around the bases as they make and spell real words correctly and try to score as many runs as they can.  This game has lots of little extras, too, like a spelling tips reference sheet, an answer key with all the possible words that can be made from the bases and endings in the game, and cute baseball-themed game pieces.  Click the pic to see it in my TPT store.

I'm going to go work in my classroom tomorrow bright and early so I should probably get to bed sometime soon.  The new school year is going to be a rude awakening for me as I've just now got my whole sleeping-in schedule figured out! :)