Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Spelling, OWLS, school buys, daily 5... CATCH UP TIME!

Wow, I have been a little MIA lately! I have been trying to soak up all the summer that I can before I start working on my (new!) classroom next week!

First off, I just have to say that I. LOVE. SAN. FRANCISCO. My best friend and I went for a few days a couple of weeks ago and I absolutely fell in love!! And it didn't hurt that the temps were between 50 and 60! Such a nice break from the 30 some odd days of triple digit heat we have been having here. Bleh.

ANYWAY. I have been in school mode more this summer than I think I have any other summer. I think that is because I have all of these woooonderful blogs to look at that have really inspired me :) Here is what I have been working on schoolwise lately!


Yesterday my friend, Amy, and I totally re-did our spelling! We wanted something that was more effective than what we feel our reading series provides. We felt like some of our kids were just memorizing for the test and not really learning the skills. We used the poems I use in my class and this book as a guide/reference to come up with the chunks we will be focusing on.
Each week, we will have a focus poem and we will pick out words from the poem that have the 3-4 chunks that we will work on (in this book she uses anywhere from 3-5 chunks per week... more for 2nd graders, less for younger kids). We will do lots of word work, games and activities during the week to really learn those chunks. As for spelling tests, our plan for the first semester is to give our kiddos 10 words each week that they will study, then on test day, 5 more words that follow the chunks we have been working on (but they won't study these at home). This will let us see who can really apply what they have learned. We are really excited about the work we did and I really think our kids are going to have much greater gains in their spelling! Especially our at risk kiddos. Yay.

I have been obsessing over owls lately. I have never really had a theme in my room.. just random stuff. I have been keeping with a lot of light blue and lime green stuff. But I found THE. CUTEST. owl stuff at Mardel's educator sale and just HAD to have it.

*I am using these nametags for my book bins*

Just TRY and tell me those are not the cutest little guys :) So since I am having an owl theme in my room I had to make a new go-home folder. I used to have a FROG folder (For Really Organized Guys & Gals). I have used that for the past few years, but now it just won't seem to fit. So I came up with the OWL folder: Organized & Wise Learners. I would upload my documents on here buuut I am still unsure how! I know the contents and rules are very similar to what many of you probably have in your take home folders :) I am really excited about incorporating the owls into my room!

Our Rockin' School
Our school theme is "Our Rockin' School." I know, I know. I decided to do an owl theme for my own classroom. But outside I always decorate for our theme. Mardel had some cute rockin' stuff, but I knew everyone would probably have it and I like to do something different :) I really wanted to find some records to decorate with but did not want to pay a fortune! And then I just happened to stumble upon a big box of 7 inches while garage sale-ing! I got about 75 of them for $3! I put various green and blue scrapbook paper on them and will write the kids' names on them to display for open house! I am really happy with how they turned out!

School Shopping
I have been doing lots and lots of school shopping throughout the summer. I was super excited when Target put out their dollar bin school stuff. And you gotta love Staples' penny sales! Our poor workout room/junk room has become my school storage room... it has all of my book bins and all of the goodies I have been purchasing all summer :) I know the hubs is just counting down the days until I can get that stuff outta here :)
Target dollar bins! WOO!
Soooo excited about my penny pencils, highlighters and notecards!
Random stuff for centers and math tubs.

Can ya believe summer is almost over?!?! Enjoy what little time you have left :)

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