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Friday, July 25, 2014

A Tour of my Classroom!!

Whew!  What a week!  All staff returned this past Monday morning to get prepared for students to flood our halls and classrooms this coming Monday!  We started the week off on the right foot with a "catered" breakfast from a local restaurant provided by administration.

But you didn't stop by to hear about all the meetings and things I did this past week - you came for photos of my classroom so here they are!  They are a rather random order - sorry!

Our Daily Schedule

A view from my desk

Classroom Rules and hand signals.

View from the right front corner of my room 

Fridge with my cute little bathroom passes and 21st Century Skills on the wall!

 Specials for each day above my door so we all know where we are going!

iPad rules and cubbies for book bags/lunch boxes

Student mailboxes with my boxes to organize weekly papers on top and some Letterland posters.  Voice Levels posters above the cork boards for papers with no name.

Reading Genre board and more Letterland posters.  On the table are boxes for my kiddos to turn in work, money, homework, etc.  My high school helpers also use this as their "home base" during their time in our classroom.  Cute little green stools are under the table skirt.

Decoding and Comprehension reading strategy posters on the reading strategy board.

My Letterland chart and my teacher stool I made a couple years ago.

My 2nd Graders will be college bound in 11 years!  Wow!!  

My little corner of the room!

Love my little corner!

Whiteboard and cubbies with manipulatives and games - I have a little bit of an obsession with these cubical shelves!

Daily 4 posters and my Reading Strategy board with more cubbies lining the front wall.

Books Hospital, Skippy Jon Jones, and Pete the Cat hanging out in the classroom library!

My classroom library - again with the cubbies!

Another view!  Wanting to update my book bin labels this year so that's a project...but it won't happen before the first day on Monday, that's for sure!

Corner of my classroom library and the beginning of my writing wall.

LOVE all the cabinets in my room!  Plus they are like extra bulletin boards.  Going to have a math focus wall this year!  And gotta represent up there in the corner - Go Pack!!

The back left half of my room.

Punctuation posters, crayons, and behavior chart on the door.

Classroom jobs!  Realized when I uploaded this picture I didn't put the clothespins up to assign class jobs - first thing on the to-do list for Monday morning!

Classroom door with all the kiddos names!

A view from the door!  All ready for Monday!

Have a  great weekend!

Monday, July 21, 2014

I LOVE using Vinyl in my classroom!

Hello friends!  I'm back again to share with you some of the projects I was able to do in my classroom using my Cricut Explore and vinyl from Expressions Vinyl.  I promise I'll be back later in the week to share pictures of my entire classroom...but this will give you a sneak peek!

First up - my classroom jobs display.  The new Cricut Design Space program made all of these projects soooo easy!  All I did was put in my phrases, get them to size, plug in my Cricut Explore and cut away!  I love it!  Plus I get to use ALL of the fonts I have on my installed on my computer.  This font is KG Be Still and Know.

Application for all of these projects is also super easy - this is why I LOVE vinyl - so stapling or gluing each letter to the surface!  Using contact paper, I am able to pull the desired phrase off of the backing paper, align to the wall or space I want to put it, press it down and rub so the vinyl will adhere to the surface and then pull the contact paper off and viola!

Leaders are Helpers - yes they are!  Each of my kiddos will have a job this year so I have a lot more jobs!

Instagram!  These days even my 2nd graders know all about Instagram, so let's bring it to the classroom.  Throughout the year I am going to post pictures of all our shenanigans so we have a little timeline going on our upper cabinets!
How did I get the Instagram font you ask???  I was able to import a picture of the Instagram font/logo into Cricut Design Space, clear out the background color and then my Cricut Explore just cut the logo/font out!  Love it!!

Do you Dojo?  We do and I LOVE it!  It is especially helpful when it comes time to decide on quarterly behavior awards!  But you're here about my vinyl projects!  My original plan is not what you see above, but as with most teachers we change our mind quite often.  I ended up redoing my behavior chart and made the phrase "How's your Dojo today?" to go along with the chart.  My kiddos move their clips based on how many Dojo points they have, so is their Dojo happy or sad - only they can decide! 

Last year I jazzed up my math fact quizzes and made them Duck Dynasty themed and the kids just loved them so much more than they had in the past!  This year we are going to track our progress on our new math focus wall at the back of the classroom.  So using my Cricut and some vinyl I cut out "We know our math facts JACK" to go with our Duck Dynasty friends who join us on our journey to mastering our addition and subtraction math facts.

Our new Math Focus Wall (lettering using pink vinyl) and you can see our Duck Dynasty friends at the bottom.  Also in the picture you can see my How Long??? (cut in green vinyl) wall for lunch heat ups.  We eat lunch in our classrooms, so there is no cafeteria lunch!  Lots of my kiddos will bring leftovers or other food that needs to be heated up and after a few days of hearing "Ms. Sutton, how long do I heat this up for???" you decide it is HIGH time for them to find the picture of what they have and put that time in on the microwave.

Voice Levels!  Once I got started with these vinyl projects they just kept rolling!  I love having headers for my different areas and putting them up with vinyl is so much easier than having cut each letter out on card stock and having to apply them to the wall.

Last but not least Eddie's Editing Marks!  Once again my vinyl was such a help with putting up titles!

That's all for today friends!  Hop on over to Expressions Vinyl and check out their products.    All of the above projects were done using indoor vinyl.  I also have circles cut out to put on my floor next week to help my kiddos line up and I used outdoor vinyl for that project as it is a little more durable and will hopefully stand up to the wear and tear of walking feet!

Friday, July 18, 2014

Five For Friday...tired style!

Oh-em-gee am I tired!  I have worked in my classroom for the past two days for about 6-7 hours each day and I am so tired!  Still have lots to do, but I think I have most everything up on the walls and furniture in its place and that is the most tiring part of getting a classroom together!

I'm linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for Five for Friday - my last Friday of summer!

I hit 100 followers on TPT this week!  I also just got an email that I have hit 75 followers on Bloglovin!  Yay for followers - love y'all!!

I have decided that next summer I'm going to Vegas for the TPT conference.  So while I was ordering Jamberry business cards this week, I ordered some teacher business cards too!  500 for only $9.99!!

Check out my pretty new pillow my mom made to go on my bed!  Went to JoAnn's to get some fabric for my classroom, saw this fabric and LOVED it so much I immediately picked it up and knew exactly what it would be perfect for!

Here is a sneak peak of my classroom as of Thursday afternoon.  It was a mess!  Looking so much better after work today!  Can't wait to share more pics with you next week once its all done!

My little helper didn't want me to go back to school so she thought if she got in the bag that had all the binders in it I wouldn't go back to school.  Unfortunately, she was wrong!

Happy Friday y'all!  Have a great weekend!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Monday Made It!

What???  I'm blogging twice back-to-back!  Yep!  Even though I didn't go to Vegas (totally want to next year..any roomies???), I have been inspired to really get my rear in gear on blogging again!

So I'm linking up with 4th Grade Frolics for Monday Made-It!

I posted these on IG a couple weeks ago and totally meant for this to be a Made-It last week, but that didn't happen.
Every year I struggle with how to address the bathroom pass dilemma.  I do have a bathroom in my classroom that I share with the teacher next door, so I prefer my students use that one first...but 48 kids sharing one little bathroom - it stays busy and sometimes they just have to GO!  So, they have to go down the hallway to take care of business.
I have tried the normal bathroom passes, but they come back filthy and often broken because they have been swinging them up and down the hallway.
And, I didn't feel that my students really needed to take a pass with them to the bathroom, I just need to know that someone is gone in case of a fire drill/lockdown/etc.
So last year, I made magnetic bathroom passes.  We have a mini-fridge right beside our door since we eat lunch in the classroom, so my passes are store there.
See picture from last year...
These were cute little passes I made to start with and are laminated card stock.  So, while they don't even leave the classroom the corners were peeling and all so it was time to make some heavy-duty ones!

When the students leave the classroom, they put their pass on the door frame, since it is metal, and then I know how many boys and girls are in the bathroom.  They take it down when they return and put it back on the fridge.  And don't worry if one might forget...the others WILL remind them!

So, now my made-it!  Here are my new bathroom passes!

I made the cute little picture and then mounted them onto wood rectangle shapes I bought at Michaels...4 pack for like 2 or 3 dollars!
I was going to mod-podge them, but that didn't work to tell, so I just used packing tape and got them all sealed up!  Put some magnets on the back and they are ready to go!

I just LOVE vinyl!
I have so many vinyl projects I am going to share with you next week, but I have to share a couple little ones in the mean time!

Since we eat lunch in our classroom, one of my many classroom jobs is Clean Up Crew.  These students sweep our floors and wipe our tables down with baby wipes once everyone is done eating.  I had a cute little box for the wipes that has Rapunzel from Tangled on it that I got my first year of teaching and it has done pretty well, but the box has seen better days.  No more cute boxes like that at Target without seeming babyish, so I made a new box for our baby wipes!

And while I was at it - had to make a book hospital.  Pages are going to fall out of books - its inevitable, but when I'm trying to teach a guided reading group is not the time for me to fix it.  So in comes the book hospital!
Please ignore all the blow pops inside - they are their little open house gift and I needed a place to store them!

A non-school related made-it!  We have so many tomatoes and zucchinis growing in our garden right now, it is unbelievable!  I made these little cuties last week for lunch one day and then while my parents ate spaghetti Friday night for dinner, I jazzed them up a little and had Zucchini Pizzas again for dinner!

Super easy to make:
Cut zucchini slices probably about 3/4" thick.
Put on aluminum foil lined cookie sheet with a little cooking spray and salt and pepper.  Bake in the oven at 425 for about 12-15 minutes.
Then take them out and put on your toppings.  I use spaghetti sauce, mushrooms, sliced up chicken breast and/or Morningstar sausage and then topped with a little shredded cheese.  Put back in the oven at Broil/500 for about 5 minutes to finish them off.

They were so yummy I think I could eat them 3 nights a week!  And pretty healthy too!

I think that's all for today.  I've also been making a ton of new products for my TPT store, so head over there to check them out and get started on the right foot for the new school year!

Happy Monday y'all!
Can't believe this is my last Monday of week this time I'll be eating breakfast at school and starting a week of teacher workdays!