Friday, June 22, 2012

Best Day Ever

So today was the best day ever and here's why! :)

1. Today was Blarso and my's one year anniversary! Wahoo! I feel so lucky to have such a wonderful fella in my life.

We went to a baseball game earlier this week :) 

2. We leave for Disney TOMORROW! Even though the day was filled with packing (which I don't necessarily love) and last minute errands, I didn't even care because tomorrow we leave for my happy place. Win. :)

3. I'm changing classrooms and the fanatastic teacher whose room I'm moving into, emailed me today and said she was officially out of the room. I was able to rally the troops (aka my mom, dad, and brother) and we moved a bunch of my stuff into the room. I can't wait to really start putting it all together.

4. 50 Followers! Wahoo!!

5. And last, but certainly not least, I was awarded the One Lovely Blog award by Miss N. over at Kids, Coffee, and Compulsive Lists!! So so so sweet. Thank you so much!! I really couldn't be more excited! I really want to put some good thought into who to give the award to, so be sure to be on the lookout for that post :) Again--thanks so much!!

P.S. Sorry for the EXCESSIVE amount of smiley faces in this post...I must just be feelin' extra smiley!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

That's Pinteresting Saturday (...on Sunday)

Here's another installement of That's Pinteresting Saturday! (....on Sunday...but who's keeping track?)

Cute Beginning of the School Year Door

I don't really have a ton of room to decorate the walls on the outside of the classroom, so I thought this would be a cute way to welcome the new 2nd graders--I'll be doing a rendition of this next year :)

Classroom Reward Ideas

How cute are these little rewards?! I found the link on pinterest, but the original blog is Fabulous Firsties. I did a prize box this year and, honestly, it took up a lot of time (and $$)...this seems much more practical and FUN! :)

Adorable Classroom Library Set-Up

From the milk crate seats to the tissue paper balls hanging from the ceiling, there is NOTHING I don't LOVE about this little classroom library set-up. I will definitely be taking a page out of this blogger's book and setting mine up in a similar way this coming fall--but in orange and baby blue :) She has so many more great ideas on her blog--be sure to click and follow the link! It's totally worth it.

Student Work in the Hallways--Now Cute AND Practical 

I'm not gonna lie, when I saw this it blew my mind a little. What a great way to not only display student work, but to show their growth as the year progresses?! I'll definitely be doing a version of this next year. Plus, having the students decorate their own little name cards is just too. stinkin. cute. love it.

Our Classroom Motto

We say this ALL the time in my classroom and when I saw this on Pinterest it was just too perfect because of the orange and the blue! Maybe I should just wear it as a sandwich board....

Welp, there you have it--My That's Pinteresting Saturday. Have a great night, friends! Thanks for reading!

Friday, June 15, 2012

A Big To-D0

Oh boy oh boy. Now, I don't know about you all but is anyone else's summer to-do list just growing and growing and growing?? I feel like mine has taken on a life of it's own.

(Innocent bystander: "Run!! It's Steph's Summer To-Do List!! It's started attacking the city...AND STEPH'S BANK ACCOUNT!!)

Now, I'd be lying if I said every single thing on the list was school related but seriously, most of it really and truly IS.

I'm moving rooms, so beyond just packing everything up I've decided to re-do my entire theme. Last year, I had this YELLOW wall (why does it need to be in all caps, you ask? Because the wall really was just. that. loud.) and now I've got a pretty blue wall--new wall, new theme, new items on the to-do list.

I've tackled a couple of things on the attacking growing to-do list. I made the famed teacher tool kit (you know, the one that's all over pinterest?) and I am IN LOVE with it already. Seriously, it wasn't even that difficult to make! Head on over to Create Teach Share for the how-to.
Here they are! A little blurry--but you get the point.

I've also started to creation of my planner/grade book for next year (cue even more excitement on my end).

Folks, I have to tell you I am SO excited for next year (....yes. Already. But I really can't help it! :) ). I feel like all of my time this summer (yes...this entire WEEK. haha) has been focused on how to be better. Better planner, better organizer, better guided reading leader, better instructor, just better.

And I can't wait to hit the ground running once the end of August rolls around :)

Does anyone else feel that their summer to-do list might even be a little bigger than their school year to-do list?

Monday, June 11, 2012

Freebie Linky Party

I'm all about Freebies. A bargain shopper in the depths of my soul, I will spend HOURS searching out the best bargains (this includes--but is not limited too--outlet shopping, mall shopping, and (especially) online shopping).

So, as one might imagine, I get a littletinybit excited when I see the word "Freebie."

(Just picture me jumping up onto the couch in a move resemblant of Tom Cruise on that fateful episode of Oprah)

SO! That being said, I decided to join up in Third Grade Love's linky party. The deal is you have to share your favorite freebie. Mine is the Parent Communication Kit created by the super talented Farley over at Oh' Boy 4th Grade--seriously, she is so cool.

Anywho, how cute is this Parent Communication Kit?? It definitely came in handy this year with a few of my students, and I plan to put it into full action with all of my incoming kiddos this fall. Plus, it's been downloaded almost 800 times--can't argue with the numbers! :)

Here's one of the cute cover pages :)
To download, head on over to Farley's TPT store and check it out--you won't be sorry you did! :)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

That's "Pinterest"ing Saturday!

Ahhhh The Weekend-and not just *any* weekend...the first official weekend of Summer Vacation.

So. Much. Love.

Anywho, during the school year my kiddos and I have something called "That's Interesting Thursday". They have about 15 minutes between lunch and specials and on Thursdays we watch a random Brain Pop Jr. video--for real, they're awesome here's the site--and discuss this new and random topic for the remaining time. The kids loved it as a way to learn about something cool or silly or interesting.

So, I'm kinda starting this up on the ol' blog here with my very first That's "Pinterest"ing Saturday! As I've been lounging around my apartment, sipping my coffee, and trolling pinterest for teaching ideas I thought "Jeeze...these are cool! I NEED to tell someone about them!!" (I tend to get a tad over excited with the teaching/classroom ideas haha)

Without further ado, here are the top teaching pins I've found today :)

Common Questions Answered Board

How cool is this?! In my classroom I often feel I have much more space than I actually do...but you can bet your sweet bippy that if there's any way to fit this in there, I'm gonna try it! What a time saver for questions you may find yourself answering over...and over...and over...and (you get the idea :) )

New Student Bag

THIS is something I really need to do this year. You never know when you're going to get a new sweet little kiddo in your room at the last second and need to have everything ready at a moment's notice--voila! With this, you'd be ready to go! I'll for sure be making these this coming school year.

Wipeable Objective Boards

With the new evaluations in our district coming out this year, I want there to be a way for my objectives for the day (or week) clearly displayed in my classroom. I thought about writing them on sentence strips, but I think I like this idea much better--erasable, fixable, and matchable. WIN.

Daily 5 Guided Reading Ideas

This is something else I really want to improve this year. I want my guided reading to not feel so "hodge podge." I want it to be more structured, planned, and (yes) assessed. I like to know for sure what my kiddos are struggling with (as I'm sure all of you do as well!) and this site has a lot of great ideas on how to really get guided reading organized. I'm all about it :)

This Kid

And finally...this little guy!! How cute!! I could not stop laughing when I saw this haha

So there you have it! My top pins for the day! What are yours?? :)

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

One Day More!

(For all you musical theater folk, the title was sung to the tune of Les Mis' famous power ballad)

Tomorrow is the last day of school and I can not believe it. My first year of teaching? Done. :)

I'm so excited, but at the same time, I'm not sure what I'll do when I don't get to see my sweet, funny little friends every day.


I feel like I got so, so lucky with my class this year. They were everything a first year teacher could possibly want--funny, sweet, at times challenging, and totally lovable. I just KNOW how much I'm going to miss them next year. That's why my goal tomorrow is to not cry until after they leave. That's the goal. I'll letcha know how THAT works out haha.

See??? So Sweet! Also, thought this
picture was HILARIOUS because my little friend
made sure to include my coffee cup haha
Today was so much fun! The kiddos spent the day at this really great park in the community with their 5th grade reading buddies and had a BLAST. Plus while we were there, there were only a few scraped knees and one kid who got sick--I'm gonna count that one as a win! After that, the kiddos who met their AR goal got to walk with a teacher to the candy store as a treat--now I don't know about you, but I'm pretty sure days like this just didn't exist when I was a kid in school haha They've got it MADE!!

Welp, I'm exhausted (again haha) so me and my newly acquired farmer's tan (thank you two days of being outside) are gonna call it a night :)

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Field Day Craziness

Today was the day my kiddos have been waiting for...nay, DREAMING ABOUT... all. year.


Long story short, I am exhausted, but it was such a fun day!! It really gave the nuggets a chance to run and jump and yell and play and basically just go NUTS for 6 hours...too much fun :) 

But, instead of me rambling on and on, I'll just let the pictures do the talking!

Water Relay--Our first event of the day

2 of my most competitive boys--let's be honest here, they're
far more athletic than I ever could be!! :)

The Kiddos favorite station: The Parachute! I remember
even when I was in grade school what a fun day this
always was in gym class. We were all just TOO excited haha
The Hippity Hop Relay--Now, there is no *photo* evidence of
this, but my 24 kiddos will tell you, I participated in this
particular event...and our team won! Wahoo!!

AND there were Snow Cones--definitely my favorite part :)

Some of my favorite quotes from the day include (but are not limited to):

(As the bus pulls into the park)

(while playing one of the parachute games)
Kiddo1: HEY! I was standing next to you over on that side and now you're on this side!
Kiddo 2: Uh, yeah...that's just because we run across to the other side.
Kiddo 3: ........oh yeah.......weird how that works.

(During the Hay Ride)
Kiddo: Miss Rudakas! *points to another kid* He is definitely NOT sitting on his pockets!!!

(During the rubber chicken toss)
Kiddo: Who knew tossing a chicken could be so fun?!

Only a few days left with my sweet little friends... I can't believe it!

Monday, June 4, 2012

June Currently

Joining up in Farley's (over at Oh' Boy 4th Grade) June Currently! :)

Communication Binders and a fun Summer Linky

So as the school year is wrapping up (yes. We still have a few days left...) I've been thinking ahead to next year and all the new things I'd like to try. One thing I really SUPER really have wanted to try is home/school communication binders. I've read so many cool things about them and they seem like a great way for the little kiddos to stay organized... do any of you have them in your classroom?? Do you love them? Hate them? What's your take on the whole idea? I'd love to hear your thoughts :)

Ok! So I'm joining up in Kindergarten Lifestyle's fun summer linky party You Know It's Summer When....

My teaching buddy, Christine, and I were actually laughing about this this past weekend. We went to college to visit with some friends and after seeing our Alma Mater's choir concert, some people were headed out for a night on the town...when they asked us if we wanted to join we (no joke) looked at our watches, saw that it was almost 10:30, gave a collective sigh, and said (in unison--I kid you not!), "Weeelll, it's actually getting kind of late..." Shouldn't 23 year olds WANT to go out on a Friday night?? Haha not when they were up at 6 preparing for a full day of teaching :) 

True story from THIS. MORNING. At 6:00 am, I jumped out of bed convinced (CONVINCED I tell you!) that I had an early meeting this morning. I rushed to my computer, quickly logged into my school's email and meeting. *Slaps hand to forehead* Must be all the end of the year business! 

Anywho, this little chickie is lovin' all the fun end of the school year stuff--but is also REALLY looking forward to some summer fun :) 17 Days 'til Disney!! Wahoo!!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Some Current and Long Standing Obsessions (Linky)

Ok folks. I have a not-so-secret kind of secret. I *love* linky really. I do. Like a lot. Like a LOT a lot.

So here's another one, brought to you by Living a Wonderful Life!

Oh wow....TOO many things! Here is a list of both my current and long-standing obsessions :)

Oh Blogger...You reel me
in every time!
1. My most current obsession is (surprise, surprise) LINKY PARTIES (and the blogger world in general). Seriously, you all are SO creative, kind, and wonderful. Starting a blog may be my favorite thing I've done lately :) New comments and followers make. my. day.

How fun is Zoey?! The answer is
so fun.
2. FABULOUS TV series--I am all about New Girl, Once Upon A Time, Up All Night, Smash, Glee, and Modern Family! I invested in Hulu Plus this year and it may be one of my best purchases. Definitely worth it, so I can stay up to date on all my favorites. Do any of you guys watch these shows?? So great.

Me and Blarso :) He's always kind
enough to pose for all of my
* incessant* picture taking
3. Porch Sittin'--Ever since the weather's warmed up, I've really loved having people over to sit on the front porch. The reason I'm putting it on this linky party is because this has seriously happened every night this week. I'm kind of obsessed with it at the moment! haha

I love having people over, drinking some iced tea, listening to music and sitting on the porch. It's such a nice time to just connect with the people you care about. Love it.

If anyone is ever looking for me, I've
fallin into a pinterest inducedcoma.

4. Classroom Idea Hunting--Now THIS little obsession has sparked even more little obsessions (I'm lookin' at you Pinterest and Teachers Pay Teachers...) I think I spend more time on these two websites than in actual conversations with real people. It's getting to be a problem, folks! Pretty soon I'll need some sort of televised reality/intervention show to chronicle the recovery of my Pinterest and TPT

Could NOT put these down :) And
consequentially wanted to learn
5. Great Book Series--I'm all about finding a great book, but when that book happens to be part of a series? Oh boy. Watch out, because I am in TROUBLE. If I find a fantastic book series, there are very few things I can concentrate on from that point out (besides finishing the series). Speaking of...anyone know about any new, awesome book series?