Sunday, April 29, 2012

Clipboard Exchange & Organization!

 So here's my take...

     The last two weeks have been crazy (a cold with pink eye...ugh!, school's fun fair, in-law visit from out of state, and my youngest has yet another fever virus!) but I just had to post tonight!

     During my crazy week I received the most awesome package from a wonderful bloggy friend, Michelle Lundy from Making it as a Middle School Teacher. We both participated in the Teacher/Blogger Spring Exchange!

     LOOK at how stinkin' cute these clipboards are!!! She was so sweet to incorporate the colors I love!!! 

I HEART them!!!

Thank you out did yourself!

     Michelle and I must have been channeling the same Pin when we decided to create a craft for our people...because I too made a Modge Podge clipboard! Here is the Pin that inspired my craft.

     My bloggy exchange friend was Jennifer Knopf over at Herding Kats in Kindergarten! I really tried to find some ladybug (she loves ladybugs) scrapbook paper for the clipboard, but was unsuccessful. I did however find a too cute ladybug frame and puzzle so I just had to put those in the box! 

I hope she likes it!

One last clipboard connection...

     I am lucky to be apart of a teacher/blogger group on FB and recently someone asked how they organize their clipboards that students use. The post got me thinking about how I store my boards! 

    Before, my boards jutted out and were a tripping hazard...not too mention there was always a long line of students returning the boards back! Yuck, this had to go!

     Awwww... now the boards each have a home in a student's cubbie! What a simple idea and I can't believe I hadn't thought of it!!! The bonus part has been we can easily see who is missing their board and needs to return it!!

Well, I hope everyone's Spring is going well! If you have a great clipboard storage solution please comment below. Perhaps your suggestion might be awe inspiring for someone else!!!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Doing My Part for Earth Day!

So here's my take...

     The end of the year is nearing and so is the copy paper supply at my school! Our staff came from back from Spring Break to find our access codes system down, which meant no one could use the copier! We could only ask the front office to make copies for us! 

     Normally, I am not a big copy person but this week our class is having our quarterly class store and the "Bank of McEvoy" is low on the green! (Yes, I know bad planning on my part...but in my defense how did I know our copier would be down for almost two weeks!!!)

     In honor of Earth Day this Friday, I have decided to come up with an eco-friendly solution to my printing problem! I am issuing my students Debit Cards! They usually get paid their class salary in cash for the quarter so this time I won't have to print any!!! 

     Below are my attempts at a Debit Card. I think I will use the black and white stripes design, print them on some green card stock, and laminate them once the students have signed their name. 

     I am eager to see how this new addition to our classroom economy works out! Over the summer I will write a more in-depth post on how I run my classroom economy. 

     If anyone is interested in making their own Debit Card, I created these in print shop. If you have the program I would be happy to email you the file so you can change it to your information. Just leave a comment below with your email address.

     Lastly, I am participating with Charity Preston of the Organized Classroom Blog with her 5 star Blogger Challenge! Go check it out!

Wish Me Good Luck!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Visualization + Poetry = Comprehension

So here's my take...

     When I introduce the reading strategy of visualization/creating mental images I use a lot of poetry!  Poetry makes great mentor texts because they are short and engage the reader quickly.

     My class loved the poem Colors by Shel Silverstein. While I read the poem the students illustrated their mental images. 

     After drawing we conducted a "museum walk". We sat in a circle with our card in front of us. One by one we went around and explained how we interpreted the poem.

It is always interesting to see the unique interpretations.

     I especially liked this student's question about whether this poem was describing a person or not. 

     Most students used their background knowledge of human characteristics to infer the poem was describing a person...obviously an imaginary one! This card spurred a great discussion as did the last line of the poem!

How do you use Poetry in your classroom?
Happy National Poetry Month!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Binders for Organized Data!

So here's my take...

     Spring Break is here and so are 3rd quarter report cards! The skills section use to take me forever to fill out. Now, I keep a binder (Dots, Desks, & Homework) to help me collect information on behavior, organization, and homework. It is also a great tool at parent/teacher conferences.

     The binder has three sections and each one is a class job. The best part is that students collect the data for me! Yeah! 

     The first section is for behavior. I know a lot of teachers use Rick Morris' Clip Chart system and so do I. If you haven't checked out his FREE ebook you must! I have been fortunate to go to a conference to see him and he has a lot of great ideas! 

     At the end of the day students record the color they landed on in their agenda. It goes home each day for parents to see. The "Dot Manager" then records where everyone landed in the binder!

     The second section is for organization. The desk inspector checks student desks during snack time. He/She records a check for clean and an X for a mess.

     The last section is to check homework. Our VIP (Very Important Person) makes sure students have completed their work. I follow behind the VIP to check for understanding. The VIP records a check if everything is complete or writes what is missing. Work that was recorded during the week as missing must be made up at study hall on Fridays.

     I can't remember where I downloaded this adorable cute frame for my binder cover. Please tell me if you know!

    If you have a great way to organize data for report card time, please share by leaving a comment below! 

Happy Spring Break!

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