Wednesday, July 4, 2012

The Beginning of the End (of Summer)

Happy Fourth of July! As usually happens to teachers around this point in the summer, I am ready to get back in my classroom and get to work on things for my friends this year. I am also eager to fulfill one of my goals from last year to share everything I make on a blog for teachers. 

Because I am moving to a brand new school this year, (I am very excited!) I haven't been able to get into my classroom since leaving my things there at the end of the school year. I have decided to stay busy this summer by getting as many things organized and ready as I can before I start to officially get all moved in.

My first project was inspired by a book I heard about when I was student teaching. Donovan's Word Jar by Monalisa DeGross is about a little boy in third grade who decides to collect all of the neat words he reads in a jar. 
Donavan's Word Jar (Trophy Chapter Book)

When I heard about this book, I couldn't help seeing a HUGE jar in my classroom full of all the wonderful vocabulary words my friends found while reading. Three years, a giant tub of cheese balls, and one Silhouette Cameo later, I finally have my word jar! (You can get 20% off of your Silhouette Cameo and other Silhouette purchases by applying for the Teacher Discount using your current teaching certificate!)

I am so excited for my kids to use the word jar during "Read to Self" time in the Daily 5. This will also be my first year using the Daily 5 and I already love it as a management system to work smarter, not harder. :) I found these great cards for the word jar from Classroom Freebies:

One of the best things about this resource, besides being free, is that you can edit the cards to fit the needs of your class! It also teaches dictionary skills in a fun way and encourages kids to seek out words they don't know or understand. I am planning on drawing one word out of the jar each Friday to highlight as a new word for the class, as well as teaching my friends to use these words as a resource to improve their writing. (These cards will be pre-cut and stored in the green basket to the left of the Word Jar.)

Inspired by this picture on Pinterest, I decided to make my own flower petals for the clock in my classroom:
for teaching time

I will post a picture of my clock in action, once I get back into my room. My clock has a 13 in. diameter, so, using a little math, these petals will fit around a clock that size. If you need them to be a little bigger or smaller, feel free to reduce or enlarge this to meet your needs. 

I hope you are all enjoying the time off and staying cool!