Friday, October 25, 2013

Thankful

I'm not going to lie, it's very hard to not get stressed, overwhelmed, and start thinking negatively during the day. Sometimes you just need to take a little time for yourself to get back to the positive, student centered, loving teacher you know you can be. I truly believe that right now times can get extremely stressful. The work load just keeps getting higher and higher. The only thing I keep telling myself is that we are all in this together. Everyone around us is feeling the stress of implementing commons core and no longer transitioning.  We are also stressing about out unannounced observations. It's not that we are afraid to be caught doing something wrong, we are just worried that our administrators will happen to come in the day you have three kids having a melt down, four won't get along, and you woke up late and forgot to copy a paper that the kids needed. We all have days like this. I have faith that my administrators understand this and would understand if this happens. Although that doesn't make the stress go away.

So, today I got to thinking... Even with all of this stress, there are still things to be thankful for. Every November I usually update my Facebook status daily with something I am thankful for. I thought today that I should make an activity for my students to do to show their thankfulness. This brought me to my newest TPT product! It's called 16 days of thankfulness. (16 days because that's how many school days we have until our week off for Thanksgiving.) The product is completely editable so you can change it to meet your needs. Basically what I plan to do is put on the board every morning what I am thankful for and have the students think of something and draw a picture to go along with it. Before we leave for the Thanksgiving holidays, each student will have a booklet to share with their family during Thanksgiving dinner.

Please check it out in my store! It's only $1! I can't wait to read about what my students are thankful for! I will post pictures once we start the project!







Sunday, October 13, 2013

Donors choose!

So as many of you may know, I submitted a project on DonorsChoose.org at the beginning of September. At first only my mom, my mother in law, and a good friend Heidi donated. I was loosing confidence in it getting funded but we still had until December. We'll earlier this week my mom called me early in the morning to tell me it was fully funded!!! The Chevron Fuel You School program finished funding it!! Yayyyy!! 

Now, what did I get/need it for? I posted a project for my behavior management renovation I'm doing in my classroom. My sister, whom is a school psychologist in a neighboring parish,  told me about this awesome program! (For those of you not from Louisiana, a parish is like a county, lol) Anyways, I began using class dojo a few weeks ago. It is a behavior management tool that keeps track of all positive and negative classroom behaviors a student receives. Each child receives an avatar after you add them to your class. They then receive a code to go online and change their avatar, allow their parents to view their behavior, and create a parent report. What is so great about this program that makes me like it even more than our school wide behavior program is that I am rewarding the good students as well. Our school plan has every student starting on the same behavior level. They can only go down, not up for above and beyond great behavior. I find that you should look more to reward good behaviors and the bad behaviors start to fade because those students realize that the well behaved students are getting all of the attention. Most of the time, the students in my classroom having the bad behavior are looking for attention. SO I began using it. I would put it up on my smart board and award points from my cell phone. Well I did not like the fact of my cell phone not being locked up and left out whenever administrators would come in. I felt it looked unprofessional. I think began to think if I had an iPad mini I could use it throughout the day in my classroom but also when we are in other places throughout the campus (cafeteria, bathroom, playground, walking in line) This way I could reward even more positive behaviors. I am super excited to get started all the way. It is difficult since I have to keep track of dojo and use the school behavior plan but I'm hoping my school will eventually adopt it since it is so simple!!  Here are a few screen shots of class dojo from my iPad!!! 



Also! My godchild is turning two tomorrow and we celebrated yesterday with a party! He is so cute and so smart!! 




Now I am going rest for the remaining part of my fall break!!


-Kristi