Saturday, June 29, 2013

Bloglovin', Instagram, and Currently July

So, I'm jumping on the bandwagon and saying goodbye to Google Reader and hello to bloglovin'!
I have to admit, I didn't use Google Reader all that much...but after checking out bloglovin' and seeing that they have an app for my smartphone - sounds like something to keep me occupied once my turns run out on Candy Crush when I'm waiting at the doctor's office, procrastinating, etc.! :)  Not sure if Google Reader had an app....I normally go thru my blog scroll and enjoy reading the posts on my computer. :)  

Anywho, looking for a cute button to post on the side for bloglovin'.
Follow my blog with Bloglovin

I just need to remember to post more on my blog and maybe a little less on Instagram.  I have fallen in LOVE with Instagram.  I mean, to the point that I'm looking at "Minecraft" things for my son and showing him!  Hah!  I mean, the child already has a page I dedicated to him on Pinterest. :)  If I keep showing him things like this, I'm going to have to change his regular cell phone into a smartphone!!!! Yikes!

So, on to Currently.  A little early, a LOT scary when I look at my "to do" list (including Zumba - I REALLY need to blow the dust off the DVD and just DO IT!), and making me super anxious to get in my classroom and start setting it up!

Thanks Farley for doing this each month! :)  I find so many new blogs out there thanks to this!!!  Be sure to check out her newest link "Teacher Block Partay!" to find your grade level blogs!

*Don't ask me why it's so hard to pick a time during the day - when other than doctor appointments and IEP meetings - I have the whole day to choose from to stick in that DVD and do Zumba!  I have a hard time losing weight and this is the one guaranteed thing that does it for me.  Sad, huh?  Maybe now that I've put it in writing for the world to see, it'll shame me into doing it! LOL

*I'm trying to be "pinspired" to organize my house.  I would be ashamed to show you a pic of how my house looks.  I keep trying that "room by room" routine, but I can't seem to get a room done in one day and finished!  Speaking of which, after I finish this post, I'll be finishing up my daughter's room and hopefully posting "before/after" pics on Instagram (to inspire me to do more!).

*Tip/Trick: I have been guilty of doing that - creating something cute and posting it on TPT or TN and then not using it in my class.  I find that if I do it for myself and my kids, then those are the items that sell!  Plus, I can always give a "kids approved" endorsement :)

Make sure to hop on over and link up with Farley! :)

Monday, June 24, 2013

On the Hunt: Classroom Theme!

Is it just me, or is it fun to have an idea in your head and go "on the hunt" for items to match your theme? Whether it's a theme, favorite author, or whatever - I love searching through stores like Goodwill, Michael's, Walmart, etc. to find that "certain something."

I'm now currently working on ideas inspired by others and their themes/ideas for the classroom.  You can look at my Pinterest pages on Back to School, Classroom Themes, and Classroom Ideas for more!

Here's a peek at my "finds" this past week:
dry erase dots from A.C. Moore:  I plan to put my objectives on it (I won't have to take up precious board space and I think it'll really add to the room!)
 This was a GREAT find from Walmart:  red plastic toy chest $4!  I plan on putting my "treasures" of books in there for our monthly book exchange!
 Goodwill:  TON of books plus cute pillow to use in the room (obviously a teacher had retired and donated her daughter even claimed a few before I use them in my classroom!).
 Big Lots:  $5 in stationery section
 Staples:  Those wonderful peacock folders were 50 cents each; other folders (grabbed for my older son) 99 cents each.  Staples is also having a great deal for $10 you get a 15% card on your whole purchase 1x/day until almost the end of September!
 Local teacher store, which unfortunately is closing in October. :(
 Another Goodwill day - see the Star Wars and monster trucks???  Anytime I find those I grab them for my boys!
Another GREAT find:  Michael's....the lamp was less than $12 and the clipboard was less than $3 on sale!  Also safari ribbon, clothespins, safari stickers, and glue dots.
Future purchase:  Saw this on my way out of Office Depot - plan to use my Staples card on it! :)  Soooo cute!

Sneak Peek of some of the items I'm working on:
Safari-themed rules

 Homework Punch Card (students turn in homework each week of the nine weeks, they get a trip to the prize box)
Voice-Control poster
So, that's what I have so far...hopefully be able to put it in a bundle for the items more "original"...the ones where I am basically borrowing the idea and making it 2nd grade friendly, I'll post as a freebie :)

Friday, June 7, 2013

Bloggy Vacation, Instagram, and Yikes! Room Theme???

So, um, I took a little bloggy vacation and finally joined the ranks on Instagram!

My friend really encouraged me to take part in "Teacher Talk Tuesday" (#teachertalktuesday) on Instagram so I created an account.  You can find me as "adventuresinsecondgrade".  Please feel free to follow me!  Right now, I have the pics that were on my phone from our last day of school with Field Day and our Minute to Win It games! 

So, other than that, I have to admit, I haven't been very productive, other than trolling thru Pinterest, telling myself that it counts as my "1 teacher thing/day" I promised myself this summer! ;)  That, and helping out a friend in her classroom pack it up and start getting it organized!  She's already created a theme AND colors for next year! Whew!  Made me start thinking of my own theme...something with meerkats, but not quite sure WHAT...safari?  zoo?  Hmm...thinking on that one.  (Add another thing to the list!).

A big part of my to-do list was to clean up some of my end of year unit activities and share them!

In second grade in Virginia, we study ancient China and Egypt.  It's fun, especially since several years ago I earned a Playmobil grant and have many of the Egyptian line in my classroom for students to create with! 

One thing I created for my kiddos this year was an activity booklet on both cultures.  After my success with the paper bag books during our Famous Americans unit, I wanted an "active" book for them to contribute to as well as help me check that they were comprehending!

So....after many fights with the copier, I finally managed to have the booklets in order so that you can copy them double-sided.  When I say fights, I mean.....after doing a set of Egyptian ones BACKWARDS I told my kids it was okay, because in the Arab world they read stories right to left, not left to right, so we were okay. 

They liked that idea so well most of them decided to write their names backwards on their book!  Ha ha!  They are ALL too familiar of my fights with the copier (and that sometimes, the copier wins!).

So, without further ado, here's a peek at my books! I'm pretty proud of them! All clipart was from public domain or Microsoft.  I created them in Publisher but locked 'em into PDFs so I couldn't mess them up anymore! :)  Click {here} to see them closer in TpT and {here} for Teacher's Notebook for Egypt and {TpT} and {TN} for China.

So, I hope you'll check them out and tell me what you think!  My goal is to blog at least once/week (if not more) about what I'm doing to get ready for next year and *hopefully* share a few freebies! :)