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September 29, 2013

Super Improvers Wall ( or Not)

I love Whole Brain Teaching.

Last year I had a Super Improvers Wall.  I had the levels (thanks to Teacher on the Loose)

and each of my students had a colored card with their name on it to put their stickers on...except I used gems instead of stickers.  Who doesn't like a little bling!

I get these at Joanne's in a variety of colors.  And the kids LOVE them!  Occasionally I'll buy some that are a little larger just to mix it up....but only because I'm crazy like that....or they are out of the smaller size.  Take your pick.

It was a great success!  I loved it and the kids loved it.  Win-Win!!

Flash forward to a shopping trip near the end of the school year for more gems.  The clerk asked what I was making with so many packages of gems.  I told her about the Super Improver Wall and she suggested if it was something they could wear and collect all year it would be even better.  I agreed and we brainstormed a little about how it could be done.


Then while stalking a favorite blog over the summer aka Run! Miss Nelson's Got the Camera!  I fell in love with her behavior beads and purchased just about every set she has.

As I was printing set after set out the light bulb went off....click!

Super Improvers Wall....that they can wear!

The kids love these!

Here are the first three tags for you to download and use.

Free Graphics from Phillip Martin

I'll be adding others as I make them.
I hope your kids like these as much as mine do.

September 14, 2013

Attention Please!


You are busy working with a student one-on-one or with a small group and the interruptions just keep coming, right?!

"How do you spell cousin?"

"What am I supposed to do on this one?"

"Did you know it's thirty-eight days until my birthday?"

Really??  You interrupted me for that!

How do you make the madness end?????

Train your kids.  What do you do if _______ happens and I'm busy?  Role-play.  (Kids love that!)

I admit I've not done this well enough many years and it made working with someone or a small group PaInFuL!

I've tried the "Ask 3 Before Me" sign, the crown on my head, etc. to signal no interruptions.

Those all worked to a point but there was something missing.

This year part of training my class included this little miracle.

Sorry it's a little blurry.
Each of the kids gets a stick with their number on it.  (Right now they are all in the container as you can see.) Love the numbers because it makes it possible for me to use the sticks for many years to come.  =)

Then while I work with a child or small group, if someone needs help or attention they quietly walk over and put their stick in the can.  It's important to teach what is a good reason to seek attention before hand so you won't get the birthday countdown info....usually.

When I have a minute between groups or kids, I pull a stick and call that child over so I can help with what they needed and give them their stick back.  Often times the kids will solve their own issue and sneak back over and remove their own stick while I am still working with someone.

Ah, bliss!

September 01, 2013

Back to School with a Bang!

School started with a bang this year people!

The mother of one of my students passed away after battling breast cancer for less than a year.

Another child threw up on the floor (which is naturally carpeted) twice as we were preparing for lunch on a nearly 100 degree day.

I thought I forgot the code to our class ipad cabinet.  But alas, I set the code wrong.  (forehead slap!)

Our school copier broke down on the first day of school, and the second, and . . . too many times to count.

Roto Rooter also had to be called the first day of school . . . thankfully not to my room.

And it's been so hot the last few weeks that I seriously wonder why I shower in the morning and bother to do hair and makeup.  By ten o'clock I'm a hot mess!

In spite of it all, I have to say our new principal is aMaZiNg!!!

I'm piloting a 1:1 ipad classroom this year!  Woot woot!!  (I'd love to hear your favorite apps.)

I have a nice group of kids in spite of the reputation that has preceded them since preschool and kindergarten.  I lucked out, let me just tell you.  The other two classes have some real stinkers.  And while I have a few pips of my own I think it will be a good year.

I have lots of things to share but haven't hung around to take pictures because of the heat so please be patient.

How have your first few weeks gone?


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