Saturday, September 26, 2015

It's finally time!

I am so excited to introduce my new design for Exploring is Elementary!

My friend, Kristen, from Chalk & Apples did a FANTASTIC job. I couldn't be more proud of this page now. Please check out her store and leave comments telling her how great she is!

Can you believe it is already the END of September? I know I can't. It seems like the year is flying by. We are going to do our district benchmarks next week, and I am sure my kids are ready (That's a first!!) 

So, I have some great things for you today! A few of my friends have come together to help me celebrate this big occasion. Primary Inspired, NotJANE, Mrs. Wheeler's Class, and Mrs. Price's Kindergators have all sent some wonderful products for you to WIN!! 

For the first prize of the day: Enter to win 4 amazing products from the ladies above and one from my own store! It is a great mixture for elementary school teachers.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Second Prize Pack: Win a $10 TPT Gift Card, and a $10 Gift Card to your choice: Amazon, Target, or Starbucks!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, September 4, 2015

GoNoodlers Unite!

So, being from Nashville, I am very fond of GoNoodle. The folks there completely out do themselves every time I log in. My kids are so very excited when I say we are going to do a brain break.

Are 4th graders too old for GoNoodle?
No way! My kids love to jam to songs like Pop Se Ko and to do yoga with Maximo. During quiet time they want to travel the USA with Airtime. They walk around telling people about the crazy state facts they learn from it.

How can I make it educational?
Bodyspell is great to get kids to learn their spelling words. I put in their spelling words for the week, and I have students that are such Kinesthetic learners! It really helps them remember the patterns. You can see them on their tests doing the motions!

My students are ecstatic when they can help Montana James through the Palace of Peril. We enter study questions for their subject. Then they do the exercises to answer the questions. They love to play against each other.

Socio-Emotional Learning
A big move that we are doing this year is really focusing on the whole child and helping them learn how to solve problems and see their own self worth. Think About It gets kids thinking during our Morning Meeting time. You can hear them telling each other the Think About It moments as reminders throughout the week


I am very excited to be a part of the blogger hop for GoNoodle! Even better... there is a GIVEAWAY!

Have you ever seen a bracelet as an eraser? Oh my goodness, these are pretty awesome! I wish I had some for my kiddos!
If you want to get some for yourself, you can always go to the GoNoodle store. Use BTSwithGoNoodle for 15% off of your order. (It's good from Sept. 4th to Sept. 11th)

What to learn more ways to use GoNoodle in your classroom? Check out the mega-post here!

Keep Your Sanity!

How do you make it through the week? Do you think that it NEVER ends? Are you finding that there is no home during the school year?

Are you tired of it? I am!

I want to make this year so much easier. I only have “one” duty after school, and that’s getting my degree. However, it still feels like there are a BAGILLION things on the to-do list. So, I wanted to share my plans with you on how I want to make it easier. I came up with periods of time to get things done.

The periods I have designated are:
Before school (30 minutes)
Planning (45 min. with transition a day)
After school (45 minutes)
Home time

Now, you know just like I know, that my planning time will be eaten up A LOT of the time, however, I can account for most of the time.

Before School
Organize copies for the week
Gather items for tomorrows PLC
Grade papers with feedback
Write a Friday note to the kids to surprise them.
Enter data to Aimsweb
IEP Meetings or Grading papers
Grading Papers
Planning with team
Enter data to Aimsweb
After School
Lesson Planning
Lesson Planning
Lesson Planning
Newsletter Creation
Make copies for next week

This is my idea anyway! I’m sure something will come around to mess it up, but I think that it’s a good start!

Now at home, I have a routine that I started last year that really was working for me. Instead of just cleaning everything on Saturday morning, I just break it up. 

My husband is a chef, so we have a menu for our food for the week. I coupon, so I make sure that we get it on the cheap. If you want to see our menus on a weekly basis (and the coupons to make it even EASIER on the wallet) you can check them out at Coupon Culinarian.

In the morning some things are the same:
·        Start breakfast
·        Put dishes away as breakfast cooks
·        (Take out the garbage if needed as you go to the car!)
In the afternoon some things are the same:
·        1 load of laundry
·        Put dinner on
·        Fold/put away laundry from the dryer
·        Put the dishes into the dishwasher
·        Wipe down the counters
·        Put leftovers in the fridge in small containers for lunches for the next day.

·        Take time for myself and the hubby!

Before School
(Just get to school!)
(Just get to school!)
Take the garbage to the street
(Just get to school!)
(Just get to school!)
After School
Sweep the floor
Nothing-it’s a school night!!
Mop the floor!
Dust the living room
Clean the bathroom.
The weekends are for the other areas of the house (and outside).

It’s amazing how once you get on the routine how things move so smoothly. If you have unexpected guests that pop in—or follow you from school for a planning party- then you don’t have to worry. It’s all taken care of!

What do you do to keep yourself sane?