Wednesday, September 7, 2011

I seem to have lost a month

Wow! Where has the last month gone?!? Sadly, I could tell you where I have spent nearly every waking moment. Initially, I spent all of my free time getting my classroom to look like the previous pictures to look like this:

Thank you to Mrs. Amy Lemons for her super cute clock markers 

 Thank you to

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Dear Blog

I miss you! I enjoy getting all of my thoughts out into the world wide web. I have been so busy since I have gotten my hot little hands on my keys that I have just not had the opportunity to update my blog. I have oodles of pictures waiting to be posted too! And there is so much fun stuff that I am learning about that I want to blog... but I have to get my stuff in order! Meet the Teacher tomorrow!!

Monday, August 1, 2011

10 years ago today!

Ten years ago today, I packed up a moving truck with the help of my friends (Edith and Joey) and moved out of Chicagoland. I moved to beautiful sunny, Albuquerque for school. Here I am with an Associate, Bachelors, and Masters degree later, married to the man of my dreams, mommy to the sweetest baby girl (who celebrated her 10 month birthday today) and a brand new teacher! Wow! A lot happens in 10 years!

Well, a lot happened today too! I checked out the keys to my classroom.
I marched my happy behind to my classroom. (Ok, so I got a little lost on the way... but I found it eventually!) I unlocked my door and this is what I saw: (The power was off in the school due to some construction so I couldn't turn on my lights) 
Good grief that is a lot of furniture! 

Hurray! My Promethean Board- I am so excited to integrate technology into teaching! 

The other side of the mountain of furniture.

I must have walked around the mountain of furniture 100 times. Did I mention that the power was out? Which meant there was no air conditioning. Thankfully, it did eventually come on although I hadn't thought to flip the switch to turn the air on in my room until the last hour I was there. (DUH!) 

I spent a good portion of my time trying to remember all that I had read in my Debbie Diller "Spaces and Places" book. I wish I could get rid of the rickety old teacher's desk as it was a pain in the you know what to move into position and I wasn't all that sold on it in the first place. So I had "Library, whole group lessons, small group lessons, listening center, and Computer table" spaces all in my head. It wasn't until I got home that I realized that I forgot a writing work station... but that is ok, I want to move a few more things still. 

I put up fabric and boarders on most of my bulletin boards already and I even borrowed the vacuum from the custodian to clean up all of the treasures the little one would be sure to find when I bring her tomorrow! I have decided to employ a young baby sitter to come with us tomorrow so that I can focus on getting more accomplished. My niece is going into second grade and I am hoping that seeing what teachers go through to set up a classroom will give her a little excitement for the upcoming school year. I was going to take some "This is what I did all day" pictures, but 5 hours in a hot classroom moving furniture can really exhaust an already tired mommy. 

Tune in tomorrow for more in "a day in the life as a new teacher"! 

Sunday, July 31, 2011

I'm a blog stalker (sung to the 'I'm a Wheel Watcher' tune)

Darn you super crafty teachers! ;) I've spent my entire morning nap time (the little one's, not mine) surfing your uber fascinating blogs and following you on Pinterest. In the mean time, the dishes in my sink have gone unwashed, the trashcans have gone unemptied, and my floor have gone unmopped. On any other day, this would not be a big deal but the in-laws are coming for dinner tonight. Thank goodness my mother-in-law is also a teacher and understands the Back to School rush for ideas, setting up the classroom, and I'm sure she will forgive me for being a total scatter brain! 

Hi my name is Christy and I am a blog stalking addict. Whew! That feels good to get out in the open. 

BTW... before pictures of my room should be posted tomorrow! (Can't wait to see my room!)

Thursday, July 28, 2011

The date I've been waiting for!

Hooray! I found out yesterday that I can go in at 9:00 AM on Monday to get the keys to my classroom. I am so excited to see my room! I'm not sure yet if I will be in a portable or not, but whatever I am given, I will make the most of. :)

Stay tuned for before pictures of my room!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Lamenating... Shamentating

So, last week, I went off to the local teacher goods store to pick up some of the essentials for any new teacher.... Fancy borders for my classroom bulletin boards, coordinating letters, and a few other miscellaneous items that happened to hop in my cart. I was fortunate enough to only have to pay $1.60 out of pocket thanks to my super sweet mother-in-law who has been giving me gift cards for the store every chance she could. :)

I came home and started punching out all 216 letters from each of the 2 packs of letters. This alone, took over an hour. They sure look pretty, don't they?
So then my dear husband and I were discussing whether it would be worth it to laminate all of my new loot. They do retail at about $8.00 a pack. I wanted to make sure that I preserved my investment so I insisted that I go laminate them. He felt that it wouldn't be wort all of the time it would take to cut them all out... something about "time is money... blah blah blah". What does he know? He is a CPA, surely he doesn't know anything about classroom materials. 

So this morning, I met my mother-in-law at the districts graphics department so that I could laminate. She showed my how and told me how to slow it down. Well, I had no idea quite how difficult this process could be. I ended up overlapping lots of my letters due to my impatience and lack of attention to detail. ARRRGGHHHH Oh well! 54 feet of laminating later and dealing with people from the district who have absolutely no concept of customer service. 

And then the fun begins! I am so thankful for my dear supportive mom who was wrangled into helping me cut out all of the laminate. She even let me leave half of it at her house for her to work on in the evenings when she wasn't painting her house. 

This is Just a day in the life of a new teacher. 

Friday, July 22, 2011

Super Technology!

Here is a fantastic e-zine that discusses different apps that can be used in the classroom. It also has a really fun idea for students to create an iPod like marketing picture to help learn verbs.

I am very excited to use so many of these ideas in my classroom!

It's Something

Wow! So much to do so little time. With the little one experiencing separation anxiety anytime I put her down, I find myself thinking of what I need to do as I rock her to sleep. So some of the ideas that I have decided that I want to implement into my classroom are:

  • A pseudo theme of my room will be: "Shoot for the moon, even if you miss you'll land among the stars"- Les Brown. I will be carrying the theme by having lots of stars and a Shooting Star of the Week. I need to decide still what that will look like, but I am thinking a special bulletin board to highlight the student and activities/share-outs based by day of the week. ie Show and tell Monday for the Shooting star of the Week and Tuesday students would bring their favorite book in. I am also thinking I will need to order a bag from VistaPrint. 
  • The Classroom Economy that Beth Newingham uses in her classroom. I love lots of her ideas! I will develop the classroom rules before school is back in session and then discuss with the students the jobs that need to be done in the classroom. From there, I will have them help me assign pay rates for the jobs.
  • Also from Beth Newingham, I will be creating Star Student Bios. She changes them based on the theme that she creates in her room. Here is a practice one that I created for the "Little One" 
Additionally, the students will complete their Bio on the first day of school while I answer any parent questions, direct students on what to do with supplies, or take a moment to breathe (this is after all my first year).

Well, that is all that I've got so far, but I'd say it is pretty good considering I have not even seen my classroom yet and I am not entirely sure what I am dealing with here. I am off to go run some errands including a trip to "Learning is Fun" to pick up Star Borders for my room, JoAnn Fabrics for for bulletin boards instead of butcher paper, Staples for Binders, and the Dollar Store just to see what I can find. :)


Tuesday, July 19, 2011

At long last... I got the call!

After much waiting around by the phone, I got the call that I have been waiting for! HR called me today to offer me a great position. I will be working at a Technology magnet school in the 2nd/3rd grade pod. I will be teaching 75% regular ed and 25% gifted. I am not gifted endorsed yet, but I will only need to pass a 120 multiple choice exam in order to get that endorsement.

SO much to accomplish before my first day to report... August 12th will be here before I know it. But so many questions still loom in my head. Like: When can I get into my classroom? When will I get my class list? When can I get my grubby little hands on the curriculum? When will I get my laptop? ahhhhh!

I think now is the time to stop researching all of the great ideas on the web and actually start creating the stuff I will need for my classroom using all of the fabulous ideas I have researched. I've heard that it is perfectly acceptable to "Beg, Borrow, and Steal" as a teacher so that is what I am going to do! Thanks to all of you and your great ideas that I will be stealing! I hope that as I progress, I can post ideas that others can steal from me too!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

VistaPrint... yep addicted to that too!

When I think about all of the time that I spend surfing the net to find great VistaPrint ideas, blog stalk, and pin things on Pinterest you all (although presently I only have 1 follower) must think I am an obsessive sloth living in pure filth. Well, I am obsessive about great ideas, but I won't be featured any time soon on "Hoarders".

Well, any how,  here are some of the super ideas that I have "borrowed" from other websites to come up with my own. Sadly, I was not keeping track of where I got the ideas from so I can not give credit.... but there are some really great teachers out there with really great ideas! I have not ordered all of these, yet. 

This is a T-Shirt that I got (for free) for my husband for his first Father's Day. The small text at the bottom says, "The only guy a girl can trust in life is her daddy." 

Small stamp (I haven't ordered this yet. But I would prefer it to be in RED so I am debating if I want to pay the $2 or $3 for the upgrade)

Here is a large banner that I thought I would put outside my classroom. 
Return address label

Another return address label
Yard sign that can just live on the white board ledge

Found this idea on a teacher's website. (sorry I don't know which website) These can be used to keep track of how much a student has earned for the classroom economy) I really like MRs. Newingham's blog on Scholastic for this:

Great way to for a friend to keep track of work for absent students

Car door magnet

Sticky notes to ask for copy services in the work room

I love the idea of the Desk Fairy because I can not stand to see a messy desk!

This bag can go home with the Star of the week to remind them to bring in something for show and tell.

I hunted for a quote about education and think this quote will serve me well as a constant reminder to stay positive with students

Great Rubber stamp idea

Friday, July 15, 2011

Pinterest= Pindicted!

In my blog stalking I had seen people comment about Curious and eager to be in-the-know about all things technical I navigated to the website that would spell doom for my ambitions for deep cleaning my kitchen. Ah Pinterest, how I do love thee!

Jumping from person to person to see what they have pinned in the wide world of teacher blogs and fabulous ideas. I could (and already have) spent hours getting lost! I posted about it on Facebook and 2 of my Facebook friends have since become members of Pinterest. I feel so cutting edge! :p

Follow me on Pinterest:

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Giveaways everywhere!

So part of my addiction to new blogs is that the fabulous teachers whose blogs I stalk offer super giveaways just for following them! The latest of my finds brought me to Mrs. Duggins' Doodlebugs blog where she is giving aways some super cute handcrafted teacher gear. Check out her blog at:

Then I found Mrs. D's Blog at . She is giving away a super $15 gift card for Dollar Tree. That gift card could help me set up my new classroom or even buy things to add to my classroom store that I will be using for my classroom management.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

I'm an addict!

I have been spending a good portion of the few moments I get alone (when my darling daughter is napping during the day)  surfing the net, jumping from one teacher blog to another. My obsession with Teacher Blogs has led me to start a blog of my own to chronicle my experiences as a new teacher.

I am fascinated by the sense of community in these blogs that I stalk. They offer freebies of the lessons and ideas they have passionately created. It is amazing! It makes me even more excited to be working in a field that not only makes a difference in the lives of children, but to be working side by side with people who are so caring. Ah! The decision to ditch the HR career and go back to school to be a teacher is never a decision I will regret... even if there seems to always be "Budgetary Woes".

I am so excited for the school year to begin. I will be working in a school that is considered to be a technology magnet school. I will be teaching .25 gifted and .75 regular education for 2nd/3rd grade. I'm not entirely sure what that will look like, but I day dream about it often. I do love being home with my daughter, but it will be exciting to put all of my education to use. (My job for this coming fall is of course all pending HR for the district finally calling me to formally make me the offer.... yadda... yadda... yadda... bureaucratic hoops)

Stay tuned as I figure out my classroom arrangement, classroom management, and get in gear for the school year.