Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Managing It All Linky

I'm linking up with Kerri from Ms. Kerry and her Krazy Klass to help give advice for new working moms and returning to school!

My husband and I welcomed our son, Carson, in March and we have been enjoying him each and every minute.  I was lucky enough to be able to take off 7 weeks of maternity leave after he was born and returned for the final six weeks of the school year.

I was so nervous and sad to return to work after spending 7 weeks with my little man, and cried so much in those days leading up to my return and the entire morning of my first day back!  I highly anticipate the same thing happening when I return to work this school year and I really love spending my days listening to his squeals and watching him learn and grow every day!

As a nursing mom I learned very quickly that making sure you have ALL of your pumping parts ready to go each morning and check and DOUBLE check that you have everything before you leave the house! On more than one occasion I went off to pump and realized that I'd forgotten a part to make the pump work.  This always sent me into a panic because I lived 45 minutes from school!  My best tip, if you have a hand pump, NEVER remove those pieces from your pump bag.  Luckily the hospital gave me a hand pump and I just threw those pieces into my bag and that saved me once, the other times I just made due and hoped that it didn't hurt my supply!

My other tip is to make a hands free nursing bra!  I made mine by slipping on an old sports bra and cutting it where I need to, saved me so much money and time finding one that I liked!

What are some of your other tips for mommas that are returning to work after having their little ones?

Monday, February 23, 2015

500 Facebook Followers!

Holy cow, y'all!  I can't believe the day have finally come where I have 500 followers on facebook! To celebrate I am giving away a $20 TpT gift card just in time for the sale.  Thank you to my dear friend Jessica from The Littlest Scholars for contributing.  On top of the $20 TpT gift card, you can also win a $10 credit to my store, Lydia -- Owl Be in Kindergarten. To enter, fill out the raffle copter below.

This giveaway will end on Wednesday, just in time for you to use the TpT giftcard at the TpT Sale!  Don't forget to enter the promo code at checkout:  HEROES

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, November 16, 2014

I can make 10, can you?

We have been working so hard in room 19 learning our numbers 0-10, what they mean, how to represent them and of course, how we can put them together to make 10!

Last year this unit gave me a headache was very hard for our kinders, and they are now also paying for it in 1st grade.  We as K teachers weren't sure what worked, made some mistakes, found some great ideas, and created some great ideas!

Our math curriculum is pretty rigid, and it doesn't leave a lot of time for self exploration and hands on learning with the concepts, so we have implemented Explore Weeks!  This allows for us to teach the content, give students a good base, then spend an entire week in centers discovering, deepening our learning and sharing with our friends!

To help with this, I created a new pack, Ways to Make 10!  This unit was created to be used independently in centers, or can be used as reinforcement for students who aren't quite ready to work alone.

 The first center allows for reinforcement of number order.  At our school, we use AIMsweb, so these cards are extremely helpful for students to practice what they will be doing in a few weeks on their middle of the year AIMsweb.  The cards are included for first, second and third number missing for numbers 1-10.

The second center is aligned directly to the way that our curriculum teaches the ways to make 10, and I love that the students can have such a visual!  This center allows for the students to cross of the cubes to count them, write how many, and how many it makes all together. 

The last center is a matching center.  The students take the cube trains and match it to the card with the correct numbers on it.  I loved this one because it also subtly gets students reading the word AND each time ;) sneaky teacher moves!

After a week of using this center with my students, their mastery levels were excellent!  I was so impressed with the students ability to explain the what, how and why, and there was a lot less confusion than last year!  

You can find this center, along with more math resources and much more at my TpT store

About that lengthy absence...

Why yes I am still around, and didn't quite completely fall off the earth!  So many things happened over the last few months.. let me see if I can catch you up quickly! On top of the three things I'll share with you, there have been numerous Ole Miss and college football games, grad school and creating of products!

The school year started and I have my hands full with a lively bunch of 19 kinders, in 4 years this has been my smallest class yet, but they have definitely brought on their challenges!  Here is a peek at my classroom!  I love, love the green walls and that it was this way when I got it!  It makes for a much more warm and inviting room, and green is suppose to be calming, right?

On October 18th, I also had the very best day of my life, I got married!  We had such a perfect day, even though about 24 hours before we weren't sure if it was going to work out... You see we found this BEAUTIFUL lodge on a lake that was just perfect.  Except you see, we live in Mississippi and there are about a billion mosquitoes.  God was definitely looking out and we were able to have some cooler weather and a light breeze, along with a fogger and some bug spray, and everything worked out perfectly!

Some of the most exciting news over the last few months however might be this...

We are expecting our first baby in March!  We are going to stay on Team Green, as in we are not finding out what the baby is.  This was a long, hard fought battle, but there are just so few surprises in life, and this might be the biggest & best!   

So hopefully you can see why I've been so absent recently!  It has been difficult to keep up with everything that has been going on!  

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Ugly Cabinet Fix!

I'm so excited to share with you my bright idea this month!

I have this really awful cabinet in the back of the room that I don't really need.  I can and do use it for storage, but I have begged since I moved into this room for it to be moved out, I WANT THAT CORNER SPACE!  Well.. turns out that when they redid the flooring and baseboards in the room, instead of moving the cabinet, they just placed the baseboard around it and have just waxed it into the floor for years...

So, since I'm stuck with this eye sore instead of being able to get rid of it, I decided to make it efficient for both myself and my students.  I have placed some storage inside but this little idea is going to make our writing center so much more exciting this year!

Dun, dun, dun...

So this stuff worked great!  No paint fumes, and just one coat covered the whole cabinet.  I picked it up at walmart for under $20 and it didn't even use a 1/4 of the can.  I purchased some chalk from the dollar store for my students to be able to practice writing their names, letters and sentences over the next year!  I can't wait to add this as a novelty in the room to keep students interested and working towards becoming writers!  

I haven't quite figured out all of the logistics about keeping it clean, but I'm thinking of a sponge in a baby wipe box so it will stay damp, and it will be apart of the board erasers job to clean it before we leave each day!

If you enjoyed this post, you can find out more about me on facebook, TpT or instagram!  

For more bright ideas more than 100 different bloggers, please browse through the link-up below and choose a topic/grade level that interests you. Thanks for visiting!

Friday, August 1, 2014

August Currently and summer update!

Holy cow!  I can't believe that it is already August.. where on earth has the summer gone!  

This has been my first summer since I turned 14 that I have not had a job or some sort of obligation to commit, and it has been so wonderful.

I'm so excited to be linking up with Farley this month for her Currently! 

This one is pretty self explanatory for any teacher that is gearing up for back to school!  

Listening: Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team -- I'm a sucker for a reality series!

Loving:  This summer has been the best.  I have celebrated the wedding of 2 friends, had some much needed R&R, worked on TpT and done so much wedding planning.. LESS THAN 3 MONTHS. woah.

Thinking:  My classroom is constantly on my mind.  We are going on vacation next week in Florida and I will not be able to get into my classroom until our week of professional development.  This is of course making me very nervous as it will mean a lot of late nights and probably being there all weekend, but I know that it will all be worth it! 

Needing:  Today I organized the office (it looks more like a tornado) of things to be loaded into the car to take back to school.. I will get about 30 minutes to drop stuff off on Monday

1st day of school:  I love the first day of school but it is so exhausting.  The majority of our students have not come from any PreK program and so we are starting from scratch.  This means a lot of practicing routines and procedures so that we can start off on the right foot.  I also like to start centers on day 1 so that the students get some time to socialize with their new friends and get a chance to do some play in the first few days!  

Be sure to head on over to link up!  

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Bright Ideas: How Do You Get Home?

I hope that so many of you, like me, are enjoying your summer and taking time for yourself to recharge your batteries, get fresh ideas and plan for the upcoming school year!  For those of you still in school, I will be jealous of your August summer photos while I'm already back in school.

Teaching K is very exhausting in the beginning of the school year because students are scared, timid and don't always know the answer to the question you are asking.  If nothing else goes right during the first few days of school, I hope, pray and often panic that the wee littles will get home to their parents.

To help, I created this small chart that hangs in my classroom all year.  Each student gets a clothes pin with their name on it and then clipped to the correct column.  For students that ride the bus or go to day care, I put either the bus number or abbreviate the day care so that I know and its great for subs, my assistant and anyone else that is helping with dismissal that normally does not.  In the first few days of school, I clip these to the students shirts or backpacks and as they get on each bus, daycare stop or with their parents, I take them back to be ready for the next day!

If you enjoyed this post, follow me on facebook, instagram, or check out another bright ideas post about an adorable seating and storage arrangement in your classroom!

For more bright ideas more than 100 different bloggers, please browse through the link-up below and choose a topic/grade level that interests you. Thanks for visiting!

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Saturday, May 17, 2014

Bright Ideas: Where is my class list?

Happy May!  I can't believe that the school year is almost over, we are so close to summer, and some of you have already started thinking ahead to the fall.  136 teacher bloggers have teamed up again to bring you more bright ideas for the classroom that are low cost, time saving and absolutely amazing!

For my bright idea this month, I'm telling you about a small idea that has helped me out so much!  Admit it, we have all been at the play ground and can't figure out which child is still missing with so many children out there, the fire alarm goes off while students are in the bathroom and you don't have your class role with you -- YIKES!  Well I have found a quick and easy way to keep it with you at all times!  

Many teachers are required to wear a lanyard all day for identification around school at all times.  Well, what better way to keep your students names with you than to put it on your lanyard.  Please excuse this picture from my first year of teaching on this ID card....

On the back of my lanyard I took a sticky note and wrote all of my students names, they are in alphabetical order by last name.  This way, when I need to line them up quickly and in alphabetical order for things like a fire drill, I am able to do so and know exactly which child is missing so that my assistant and I can identify if they are absent, in speech, bathroom, or wherever else students get pulled to be during the school day.  

After I wrote all of my students names on the sticky note, I placed it on the back of my ID card, stuck it into a laminating sheet, and ran it through the laminator.  After I ran it through the laminator I cut it out of the sheet leaving a little room around the edges, and ran it through 2-3 more times to make sure that it was sealed, and poked a hole with my lanyard so that ti would stay.  This is my tag at the end of the year, so you can see that it is rather beat up, but it has held up, and when I have felt that it has gotten too loose, I just throw it through my laminating machine again to tighten it back up!  The best part is that this can be used year after year because it hasn't stuck to the tag so in August I can simply do it again.  

If you enjoyed this bright idea, please consider joining me on Facebook, Teachers Pay Teachers or Pinterest for more great ideas.

For more bright ideas more than 130 different bloggers, please browse through the link-up below and choose a topic/grade level that interests you. Thanks for visiting!