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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Vegas & Ohio Meet-Up

I'm a little late on posting this, but I wanted to share my adventures in LasVegas for the National SDE 'I Teach K' conference.  First, the conference was A.M.A.Z.I.N.G.  I saw a ton of different sessions and wonderful educators who I follow online-- Shari Sloane, Kim Adsit, and Deanna Jump just to name a few.  Seriously, these women are great and it was so helpful to hear them speak.  I walked away with a notebook and head full of new ideas for my classroom!

On Tuesday of my trip I attended the big LasVegas blogger meet-up, which was hosted by a group of sweet bloggers and sponsored by TPT.  Thank you!  It was fun to see the actual people behind the blogs.  They also gave away a ton of great prizes.  I won a gift certificate to TPT!!  The best part of the night was probably meeting the one and only Deanna Jump!  She is seriously the sweetest person.

Onto another meet-up in Ohio.  On Friday I met up with some local bloggers at a great little restaurant on the docks.  It was a beautiful day so we sat outside and chatted the time away.  It's nice to chit chat about all things school related.  Kate told me about a new must-have teacher supply... FriXion pens.  Seriously, it's an erasable gel pen!  Sign me up!  :)

{Thanks Kate for sharing the picture!}

Here's who joined me at the meet-up: {left to right}


Friday, July 26, 2013

Table Caddies {with a promo code}

As most of you know from experience once a school year has come to an end you start planning for the next.  I, too, am guilty of this.  I still enjoy my summer and take breaks from school work, but I truly enjoy what I do and find it hard to let it go for so long in the summer.

Next year I'm doing a polka dot and apple theme.  Everything will be black, white, green, and red.  I wouldn't normally go for red, but the tables and chairs in my classroom are red so I needed it to all match.  I'm quite happy with my progress so far.  {I'll post my apple decor unit as soon as I'm finished with it.}

Ok, now on to my new table caddies... the whole purpose for this blog post.  Thanks to the wonderful folks at I now have the perfect table caddies to keep my kiddos organized at their tables.  I always have trouble finding just the right basket to fit all of the materials in a useful way so I was super excited to find these utility caddies from  What I love most about these baskets is that there are two big open compartments vs. small divided areas that don't fit anything.

The awesome thing for y'all is that is offering 15% off all plastic storage by Romanoff with the promo code 'StorageSpecial15'.

I've dolled up my caddies to go along with my theme and now I'm trying to decide exactly how I want to organize the materials in them.  I know for sure that each student will store their crayons in a small food storage container like pictured below.  I have used this for a few years now and it's been amazing.  I just print out an address label with each child's name and stick it on.  Last year pencils were quite the battle so I'm trying to figure out exactly how to deal with that.  I'm leaning towards little tape flags in different colors on each pencil so kiddos know exactly which is theirs.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Ohio Blogger Meet-Up

Next week I'll be heading to a northwest Ohio blogger meet-up!!  If you're local, I'd love to meet you and chat about all things teaching!  :)

Be sure to let Julie know if you can come by emailing her at

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Vegas, here I come!

I'm packing my bags and heading to Las Vegas tomorrow morning.  I will be attending the 'I Teach K' conference all week and couldn't be more EXCITED!  I am registered for some amazing sessions!!  I'm also very excited to be attending the big blogger meet-up.

The unfortunate part of this whole adventure is actually getting to and from Las Vegas... I HATE FLYING.  {The people who sit next to meet probably hate it too when I make full use of the complimentary air sickness bags!  TMI?}  I usually travel alone so at least for this trip I'll have people {and Dramamine} with me to keep me distracted and hopefully not sick.

I'm sure I'll have lots of pictures and ideas to share when I return!  Any other bloggers heading to Vegas this week?

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

What are you reading? {Linky Party}

Ahhh, summer!  I feel like every school year goes by more quickly than the prior one.  I love what I do and the freedom of summer is a nice treat after 10 months of constantly being on the go.  One thing I enjoy doing in the summer is picking up a good book {or two or three}.

Recently, I had the pleasure of getting a copy of Love and Other Subjects by Kathleen Shoop.

As I began reading the first chapter I was immediately sucked in.  This book incorporates love and teaching-- what teacher wouldn't be sucked in?!  The main character, Carolyn Jenkins, is striving to be the best teacher she can be fresh out of college while trying to find love at the same time.  Carolyn was raised in a well-to-do suburban area, but finds herself slightly out of her element teaching at an inner-city school with a principal who is out to get her.  The writing style of the author, Kathleen Shoop, is easy to read and she truly captures the struggles and successes of a first year teacher in the classroom.  I found myself making many connections as I read the book and thought back to my own struggles as I began my teaching career.  {Although my experiences weren't nearly as extreme as the ones in the book I should add.}  I definitely recommend this book to other teachers out there who are looking for an enjoyable summer read! :)

My current read is more school-related, but still very enjoyable.  Upon the recommendation my blogger friend Kate from EduKate & Inspire, I bought a copy of No More "I'm Done!" by Jennifer Jacobson.  This has amazing information about creating a classroom of independent writers.  I highly suggest it if writing is an area you'd like to improve in your classroom.

So, here's your chance to share with us what you are reading this summer.  Please grab the image below and link up with me on your own blog to share what's on your must-read list for the summer months.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Teaching Character Traits

This summer I've been teaching summer school so I've been staying after school a little each day to get my new room ready for the upcoming school year.  {Don't worry-- it's only a half day so I still get plenty of free time.}  This week, however, we have the week off.  This translates into a lot of Pinterest time!

Here is one pin that stood out to me:

I don't use the 7 Habits {although it sounds wonderful} so I created my own set of character traits posters.  I plan to have one set hanging {in my coat closet area} as a constant reminder for my students.  I also plan to have a second set displayed, like the one pictured above, in my group meeting area.  My set has 9 positive character traits so I will teach one per week each marking period.  I think it will do them good to have a trait repeated 4 times throughout the year.  {I also included 2 editable pages in my document so you can add your own.}

Stop on by my TPT store to check it out!  :)
UPDATE 8/16/15:  This product is no longer available.  Sorry for any inconvenience.