Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Getting Organized for School: Freebie, PIN-spiration, and Fun!

Hey y'all!  I hope you're enjoying your summer.  One thing I'm doing this summer is moving classrooms.  I'm fortunate to have a key to my building and access to my classroom 24/7 (private school!).  So I've been working QUITE a bit!  But I actually find it fun, so it doesn't feel like work (*most days*).  I wanted to share a few tips for how I'm organizing my desk space and my classroom and show you some of my creations and some of my finds...including a fun freebie!

First up...Birchbox!  Who subscribes to Birchbox?  Love, love, love it!  The boxes are my main reason for wanting to subscribe.  #truth
I wanted to find a way to use those beautiful boxes so I decided to turn them into desk drawer organization.  I made stylish, scripty labels to place on top of my boxes, and I lined them up in a drawer all pretty-like! :)

Um...hello!!!  How could you not grin when you opened this drawer?

 P.S.  The notecards are from Blair Turner Paper Co.
Wanna use your Birchboxes to organize your desk?  Download these free labels:
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Birchbox-Desk-Organization-FREEBIE-1932340

Another fun way I'm getting organized this year is by using monthly binders.  In these binders, I'm keeping plastic sheet holders to hold master copies I know I'll need in that particular month.  I'm also including a planning calendar in each folder outlining my proposed units for each week of that month.  I made the notebook covers and spine covers black and white so they can be copied on any color paper you choose! I'll organize them some this summer and some as I teach throughout the year so that by next year my master copies will be easy to get my hands on from month to month!

You can check out these goodies (along with some blank monthly planning calendars and a quarterly curriculum planner) here:
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Birchbox-Desk-Organization-FREEBIE-1932340

One last thing I'm doing to get organized is branching out from the traditional plastic tool box to organize my teacher tools.  I'm going shabby chic instead!  I found this ADORBS box at Marshall's and had to have it!  It was $30.  I figured out the size of the label inserts and typed up a few scripty labels to hold my most used supplies!
 
How are you getting organized for the coming school year?  I'd love to learn some more tips and tricks! :)

Monday, June 15, 2015

Resources for Integrating Technology



The CCSS for Reading call for teachers to integrate technology in all strands.  Here are some great resources to help you achieve technology integration in your classroom!

R.CCR.10: "Read and comprehend complex literary and informational texts independently and proficiently."




Text-to-Speech software is useful for helping students navigate more difficult text with tricky vocabulary.  Here are some useful software programs:



These websites reinforce foundational reading skills!



W.CCR.6: "Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and to interact and collaborate with others."


How do YOU integrate technology into your students' mastery of Common Core Standards?  Please share!

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Summer is the {NEW} New Year! #newyearsummer

There’s something fresh, new, and exciting about June 1st.  Even more exciting than January 1st, in my opinion.  For many of us teachers, we’re out of school by June 1st (or shortly thereafter).  There’s time to rest and rejuvenate, complete half-finished projects, enjoy or families, and JUSt BE.  But there’s also time to really focus on what’s working AND what’s not working in our lives.  There’s time to be the metaphorical caterpillar and wrap ourselves in the cocoon of summer so we can emerge as the beautiful butterfly we dream of being. 
One of my dreams (and hubby will be thrilled!) is to be banish my life of clutter, disorganization, chaos, and materialism and to embrace a life that’s more simple, meaningful, and purposeful.  

 
The following quote is my new mantra for our household as it relates to material things.  You can download this image by clicking on it:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B_CfsL3_vt5lSXhaaC01dVY0Zmc/view?usp=sharing

One of the first things I’m doing this summer is cleaning out our clothing.  I’ve become inspired by
to pare down my wardrobe….drastically.
I’m not even what you’d probably consider a clothes-horse.  But I do have a TON of clothes.  Truth be told, I probably only wear ¼ of the clothes.  Sad, huh.  I bet you can relate! 
So here are the steps I’m following in paring down my wardrobe:








 I'll be back later with some pictures of my progress.  I don't know that I'll get down to 37 pieces or 33 pieces like some Capsule Wardrobe proponents advocate....but I'll get down to a number that's comfortable for me while being sure I truly LOVE what I have and USE what I have.

Join me on Instagram, Facebook, or your blog and let me know how Summer is the {NEW} New Year in your life!  !  And use the hashtag #newyearsummer on Social Media!

Monday, May 25, 2015

My Favorite Fonts: Cara Carroll Fonts {GIVEAWAY}

You already know she's unbelievable adorable, sweet, and Just REAL....and that she makes amazing teaching products.

BUT....did you know that she also makes adorable fonts?  Here are some of my favorite Cara Carroll (CC) Fonts:


Y'all...I think I like her font names just as much as I like the fonts themselves.
#Idontgethashtagseither
#butIlikethem

And be REAL....what teacher hasn't wanted to lick a Xanax at one point or another???
You can grab these Cutie Patootie fonts here:
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Font-Fun-Volume-2-581279

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Font-Fun-Volume-3-702400
 Mrs. Cutie Patootie herself has agreed to give away ALL THREE CC Fonts sets to one lucky winner!!  Enter below: 

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Summer Learnin': Had me a Blast! (PLUS a FREE Graduation Cuties Craft Template)

No one wants to see their students go through the summer slide.  All that hard work down the drain?  No way!! 

Any summer slide will REALLY stand out to me since I'm looping up with my Kinder-kids to first grade!  I can't wait!

I decided to put together some bubble-gum themed learning packets to send home with my kiddos.  They cover 10 weeks (in case you get a nice, long summer!) and each two week page features ten learning activities.  They activities are quick, fun, and educational! Best of all?  They're entirely editable, so if you don't like the activities I included, you can make up your own.  This will allow you to differentiate based on your students' needs as well!!
 Each time a student does an activity, they color in a bubble. 

 I also printed off Lyndsey Kuster's helpful website list and included it in the packets I'm sending home!
 Along with the packets, I'm sending each child home with a copy of the book On Our Way to First Grade--which I snagged from Scholastic book cubs for ONE DOLLAR y'all!!
 You can buy the book here:
https://clubs2.scholastic.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?storeId=11151&catalogId=10001&langId=-1&productId=85099138

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy....so I had to give those babies some bubbles, too!  These come in packs of 5 for around $3 at Walmart and they blow the best bubbles!  I made some cute free gift tags for K-5th grade that you can snag here:
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Bubble-Gift-Tags-K-5th-1864675
You can get Lyndsey's helpful website list by clicking here:
http://ayearofmanyfirsts.blogspot.com/2013/05/summer-review-websites-for-kids.html

AND you can grab my editable Summer Learning packet for just $3.50 at TPT:
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Dont-Stop-Lets-Pop-Activities-to-Bridge-the-Summer-Learning-Gap-EDITABLE-1812230
 How about one last end of the year treat? I've seen these Graduation Cuties all over Pinterest but couldn't find a template, so I created a FREE template just for y'all to use!  Snag it here:
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Graduation-Cuties-A-FREE-Craft-Template-1864693
 If you enjoyed all these fabulous freebies, leave me some love in the form of TPT feedback, please! ;)

Monday, May 18, 2015

My Favorite Fonts: Hello Fonts {Giveaway!}

Another one of my favorite Font artists is Jen Jones of Hello Fonts!  Here are some of my favorites:


 Want some exciting news?  Jen's Hello Fonts ALL fonts license is extremely affordable at just $40!!  You can snag it here:
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Commercial-Font-License-All-Hello-Fonts-for-One-User-Lifetime-License-395172

I also love this easy way to download ALL her fabulous fonts in one download!
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Hello-Fonts-Personal-Non-Commercial-Use-301730

I'll be back next week with more FUN fonts! :) 

Wanna WIN the All Fonts license? (a $40 Value)
Jen Jones has graciously agreed to give it away to one lucky winner!  There are two easy ways to enter using the Rafflecopter below!

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Techy Tip: Replacing Fonts in Powerpoint

Have you ever pulled up an older file to edit it....and realized that you used ARIAL or Comic Sans....throughout various sections of the ENTIRE.DOCUMENT.??????
What an editing nightmare!  Here's an EASY and QUICK way to replace the font you don't want with one you do want! :)


 Keep in mind that sometimes the formatting gets off because the font you chose may be bigger than the previous font.  In that case you may need to size down the font or choose a different font for the replacement!  Hope this techy tip was helpful!