Monday, July 2, 2012

currently and make it Mondays

Today is Monday, July 2 which means two things in blog land...It's "make it Monday" the super fun linky part hosted by Tara from 4th grade frolics and "currently" which is Farley's awesome info finding link up at oh boy 3rd grade. I am excited to show what I've been up to this last week and this weekend!  CONFESSION...I've never actually done a "currently".  I've only read everyone's lists.  I like looking at them because it shows how very similar we are. I like knowing who has the same interests as me.   I just hope I do it right!!
Looks like it might have worked!  It was really hard to pin down a favorite read aloud because I read probably like 4-5 books a day! Last year I taught 5th (as a favor to my P) and fell in love with Esperanza Rising.  Everyone (including the boys) loved that book. Same thing for professional books!  I read all year long and have a slew of them on my shelves.  I just ran out of room for Daily 5 and the F&P phonics book.  I guess I should've said "the ones with the coffee and diet coke stains" hee hee ;0)

Now for the Monday Make it with Tara at  4th grade frolics.

 I decided to work on some organizational things that will make the year much easier for me.  I made my teacher binder first.  I had been looking on pinterest, blogs, and TPT and found lots of cute ones but they didn't have all the sections I needed.  So I decided to make my own.  I used the graphic backgrounds by From the Pond http://fromthepond.blogspot.com.  The font is from http://helloliteracy.blogspot.com/. That gal is awesome with her creative self!!!  Another huge thing I learned is that I need to make a notebook to write down all the places I find things because I can't remember or find the original source.  It was before I started a blog and didn't really realize that I'd need the source from which they came!  Please if you see your stuff and I haven't recognized you, it's not personal...I am sorry and I'll make up for it.  Just let me know! Super Edit ***Brandi at success in second grade has come through and saved me!!  She let me know that Jodi at fun in first grade was the person I found the calendars from.  I feel much better knowing the person who created them got credit for them!   Plus, I really liked the polka-dot frame because it matches the colors of my room!    The 7 sections I came up with were: Important class information, a calendar, lesson plans, student and parent information, student data, student documentation and meeting notes. If a document is included with that section (like lesson plans or student information) I include the originals I use  in a page protector behind each tab.  Some of the tabs have mini tabs behind them.  Especially the ones for student information.  I'm going to try the inexpensive tabs for whole class usage and the sticky tabs for smaller areas (like meeting notes).  It is going to be a big book so I invested in an Avery heavy duty binder.  A little pricey but I'm hoping to keep the same one all year.  
These are the tabs in the binder:
  • class info tab - items like roster, important numbers and contacts, the main parent contact etc.  
  • calendar - (or "what's goin' on. you know you're singing it like Marvin!!) I like to have the calendar on a two page spread.  It's just my preference.  This is one of those things that I downloaded from TPT but never recorded who from :(  let me know if this is yours!!!


  • Lesson plans - my template is also a double page spread.  Just easier for me to read!!


  • Student and parent information - You'll see the yellow card I send home the first week of school. It is printed front and back on half sheet of paper. I use that information and create a nice, neat document with all the important information about that student and how to reach the parent.

  • Student data - pretty self explanatory...but...I keep DRA results, fluency (word, reading, and math fact), running records, benchmarks etc.  here.
  • student documentation - this is where I house specific info for each student.  Some kids have a tab some don't.  Just those I need to track for one reason or another.
  • meeting notes - faculty, grade level/PLTs, committees...any and all meetings, the notes go here!!
Finished product...you can see what I'm working on for next Monday huh??
NEXT...Fluency probes.   Fluency is a huge focus area at our building.  I do lots of things to build fluency (phrase cards, readers theater, lyric club, word ladders) but I needed something to track their progress.  I was using (still do) the fluency cards from Lakeshore Learning.  However, pinning away, I found this website that has one minute fluency probes and the recording document that goes with it.  Two "best of alls"...1) you can enter the information on the computer through this site and it will keep record of it and do all sorts of things like create a tracking document that shows the progress made by the kiddo (which my district requires for RTI) and b) it's free!!!  Check it out http://easycbm.com/  All I did was copy both the student reading document and teacher recording document for the levels I needed and put them together in a binder!!  So easy...everyone loves the grab and go, right!!!  I did print the student copy on yellow and the teacher copy on white because that's the one I'll be making lots of copies of.  
you can see the other thing I'm working on for next week here too...


 Hope you all could find some inspiration from little ol' me.  I'll leave you with the home make it I worked on during the week.  My cousin got married in Mexico a week ago and her reception was Saturday.  I made a collage of their favorite photos for the sign in table.  It has bitten me with the scrappin' bug which I needed!!  I've not scrapped all summer long...poor little E doesn't even have a single picture of her in a book.  Bad Mommy...





Time to look at all the other make its and currentlys out there!!!  I'm setting a time limit for myself though!!!  Gotta take care of baby Cs birthday stuff today...here she is in all her glory with her big Cs sunglasses!!!

Keep Coming Back
Rene'
"I love you oh so well, like a kid loves candy and fresh snow. I love you oh so well, I feel the heavens overflow"

28 comments:

  1. I just did my first Currently too! I'm glad to hear your students liked Esperanza Rising. I bought that book near the end of last year, but never got around to reading it with my students. I'll make sure to next year!

    Also, your daughter is absolutely adorable!

    -Dani
    A Place to Thrive

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    1. Oh Dani, you need to read it. Although there is tragedy, it is filled with hope too. Also GREAT, GREAT for figurative language. You could do so much with it. Thanks for the compliment...she is a cutie (I think;)).

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  2. You've been one busy momma! I love those binders, any suggestions for someone who is just starting their first year teaching!

    Amanda

    Surviving the First Year

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    Replies
    1. Amanda, I would have to say one of the most important things is to develop real relationships with your students, HAVE HIGH EXPECTATIONS AND BE CONSISTENT WITH THEM, be organized when you are actually in a lesson (nothing throws a lesson off task or down the drain like having to go get supplies or find something in the middle...sadly speaking from experience ;)) try to remain positive and most of all HAVE FUN. I'm always here if I can help you in any way!!! Keep it up girl! You'll love teaching!

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    2. BTW...I tried to go your blog and it wouldn't take me there. I wanted to check ya out and write a little more. Send me the address ok?

      rene'

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  3. Love your binders. I have given you the One Lovely Blog award. Stop by to claim it.

    Alyce


    Mrs. Bartel’s School Family

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    Replies
    1. Wow Alyce!!! thanks so much! I'll stop by first thing tomorrow and claim my very first award!!! You are so sweet. BTW...Alice was one of the names we considered for our newest addition...I love your name!!

      rene'

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  4. I love your binders too. I started setting up mine for this year... what a project!

    Emily
    I Love My Classroom
    www.ilovemyclassroom.blogspot.com

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    1. It is a big project and it always seems to be ongoing! I've already thought of two more things that I want to add. But it's gonna work out because I can add them to the first section of important class information. I wanted to add the class schedule and the transportation list...just a thought

      rene'

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  5. Your teacher binder turned out great! I love being organized and can't wait to use mine:) Love the fluency binder:)) Your little one is absolutely adorable:))) Thanks for linking up:))

    4th Grade Frolics

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    1. Thanks Tara! I absolutely love your blog and Mondays. I used to dread Monday...not anymore :0)

      rene'

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  6. Love your organizational binder. That's one of the next (many) things on my to do list!

    Brandi
    Success in Second Grade

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    1. Thanks Brandi...I'll send you mine if you'd like. I know it isn't much in the way of fancy, but you're welcome to it. Let me know

      rene'

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  7. thanks for linking up!!! You have been busy and it sounds like you are going to be busy for a few more days... the cake decorating class sounds like fun!!!

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    1. OMG it is sooooo much fun!! I am even going to attempt a Dora cake for little Cs birthday. I'll post pics...the good, the bad and the ugly (well, hopefully not so ugly! hee hee)

      rene'

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  8. Love the binder!!
    Blessings,

    Jessica Stanford
    Mrs. Stanford's Class
    I hope that you'll join me for my giveaway ♥

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Jessica! I'll definitely stop by!!!

      rene'

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  9. I love that calendar as well and I think it's from Jodi at Fun in First Grade. Here's a link to the post I just found. It looks like the same calendar you have in the picture.
    http://fun-in-first.blogspot.com/2012/06/free-calendars.html
    I'm starting to work on mine...thanks for the inspiration!

    Brandi
    Success in Second Grade

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    Replies
    1. YEA!!!!! thanks so much Brandi! You are right! It is her! I am going to edit right as I finish this! I've learned my lesson and have a pad by the computer now. Thanks again.

      rene'

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  10. Binder looks great!
    ~April
    The Idea Backpack
    ideabackpack@gmail.com

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  11. I see I'm not alone in my admiration for your blog. I remember those potty training days...they are trying. I have nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award! Stop by my blog to see the details!

    Diane
    Teaching with Moxie

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    Replies
    1. Wow Diane! You are so sweet to nominate me. I am honored and will stop by asap. I am pulling my hair out over the potty training!!! There was quite a gap between my two older and two younger ones (13 years!!!!) I don't remember it being so hard! I feel like I live in the restroom. HaHa!! thanks again for the award!

      rene'

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  12. Your blog looks great Rene, super impressed! Love the pic of little C in the sunglasses! ---Jen

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    1. Awww thanks Jen. I'm glad you stopped by and checked it out. That you are impressed means "I dun gooooood" huh? hee hee! I'll let you know when I post more ok?

      love ya
      Na

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  13. Thanks so much for leaving such a sweet comment on my blog! I'm so glad you left a link- I am loving your ideas!

    My teacher binder is my sanity-saver- love it SO much! Would you maybe share the Student Information cards you make? They look WONDERFUL! :)

    Jenny
    Luckeyfrog's Lilypad

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    1. Jenny, I am sorry it has taken so long for me to reply but I'd be happy to share the student cards I have. Send me your email and I'll email both documents to you ok?

      rene'

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  14. I love how your binder is set up, thanks so much for sharing!

    dede @ 1stgradeevents.blogspot.com

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