Teaching Inspiration

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

New Year, New You, New Sale

If you read my last post then you know that I'm feeling strongly about how this new year is going to go.  

So as 2013 comes to an end, I've decided that it's time to go out with a bang and enter 2014 fiercely.  I will be having a 20% off sale from today until January 2nd, 2014.  It's just my simple way of saying thank you for following my store and being interested in my products. 

2013 invited me into the TpT and Blogging world so I want to share a few of my favorite products from 2013:




          Teacher Binder Organization            Visual Direction Cues



          Lesson Plan Book                                         Decor Bundle

And of course some freebies to check out ...


                                       Guided Reading and Read Aloud Planning Freebie

On that note, I'm wishing everyone a happy, healthy, and safe new year!!  Cheers to making all of our dreams come true.


Perfect new years quote 

xoxo



Monday, December 30, 2013

Let go of the stress... Focus on what really matters in life!

For lack of a better term, I feel like a hamster in a wheel.   Up until this holiday break, it seems I do the same thing day in and day out.  Eat, commute to work (a whopping 100 miles a day), work, commute home from work, do more work after work, eat, sleep, and repeat!  Then on the days I'm not working, or possibly do I dare say, have a lighter at home work schedule, I try to catch up on laundry, cleaning and organizing, and of course making time for my boyfriend, Rich.  Now I know that so many of you that are reading this blog have other obligations - such as children.  Sometimes there is no way not to feel the effects of pressure and burning out.

Can I get an AMEN that I'm not the only one that feels like they are spinning around and around in that same darn wheel????

I tend to get stressed over the things that I'm not doing because I think I should really be doing them.  For example, I always think I should be doing more work than I already do.  Whether it's more grading, creating products for TpT, or blogging the thought is ALWAYS haunting me!  Then I think about personal things, such as working out - I should be doing that at least 3 - 4 times a week for my own health, but I seem to do more thinking about it than actually doing.   

I face a constant battle with me and myself ... day in ... and day out.  

And then it was brought to my attention.......

Constant stressing about work, doing more and more work, should NOT always be my main priority.  There are so many things worth stressing about and family, my boyfriend, my sanity, and my health are certainly things that I need to move up on my priority list.  I was recently chatting with some blogging friends of mine in a private facebook group of ours.  This is a direct quote from my friend Tina's principal:  

"As a teacher you are juggling so many balls and that we have to remember 

that the only one that is glass is family. The rest will all bounce back. You have

 to treat your family like the glass ball."


I'm going to add to this quote that health is also a glass ball.  Sometimes there is no getting it back once it is gone.  This was a reminder to me today after finding out that a beloved former Assistant Principal of mine and current Principal at a new building passed away.  It has left me heart broken entirely.  He is someone who has inspired me, as well as others, to be the very best of the best and someone who had personal faith in me even when I lacked it in myself.  



That being said, life is a precious gift that we must never ever take for granted.  With a new year only 2 days away, it's time to start focusing on YOU.  Didn't grade those papers?  That's okay, they can wait until tomorrow!  Didn't blog once a week like you think you should?  That's okay, because there is always a new week.  Become the best version of yourself that you could possibly be!  Those stresses that weigh us down day after day are just not worth the weigh down.  Focus on what matters - YOU, FAMILY, and HEALTH.  Start making changes today and don't ever look back.


Thursday, November 21, 2013

A Very Merry Holiday Present

Long time no post!!  I can't believe that my last post was in October.  Truthfully, this disappoints me.  One of the goals that I set for myself when starting my blog was to blog on a regular basis... meaning at least once a week.  I have to admit though that this school year has been flying by and no matter how hard I am working on my classroom responsibilities I just can't. seem. to. catch. up.  Which puts my blog on a different level of priorities.  And oh boy, do I hate to even mutter those words, but that is the sad, honest, unfortunate truth. :(

Anyways, now that I got my sorrows off of my chest, let's move onto some happy news!

I recently created a holiday packet, just for all of my store fans!!  I am so thankful for all of the faith, love, and support that each of you have shown me since I began my journey in April so this packet is my holiday gift to you!!  It is very similar to my "Autumn Themed Math Center" pack, EXCEPT that this one is geared towards Christmas and it is ... wait for it ... FREE!!!!

The way this game works is that each player gets a playing mat.  Each student then picks a number from their set of number cards (either 1 - 10 or 1 - 20; this depends on the skill level of your students/class) and places it on their playing mat.  Each player then counts that number of presents and puts them under the tree.  They then compare who has more or less or if they have the same amount of presents.  A recording sheet has been provided as well.

Standards K.CC.C.4 and KCC.C.6 are met through this packet.

I hope that your students love this game!  Don't forget to leave your feedback  on the product comments!!  Product link is at the bottom of this post. :)






A Very Merry Holiday Present




Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Oozing with Inspiration Tonight

When I decided to start this blog, I knew that I wanted to incorporate elements that would be inspirational to others.  I know, I know you must be thinking, what does this girl want to ramble about now!  But wait a second... just hear me out - Teaching is not an easy task!!  Sometimes it is easy to lose sight of why we do this job.  The kind of inspiration I am talking about by the way is not a material or your favorite TpT product that can be used within the classroom.  The inspiration that I am talking about is that, which can only be felt with your heart. That feeling that makes your heart melt and feel proud to be an educator.


Truthfully, there have been points throughout my journey that I almost wanted to turn my back.  It's not the students, because honestly, I love the students!!  That's why I do my job.  See, I am a Special Education Teacher.  I seem to get the "tougher" students, and sometimes when the year starts, my brain goes negative.  "How can I do this?"  "Why do I do this?"  "Will I be able to do this?" (See how negative and self-destructive that is!!) But at the end of the day those are the students that truly make my heart go pitter patter.  The ones that give me the biggest challenge that I can reach the most.  Being able to take a child, that most people wouldn't know what to do with, and try and mold and shape them into society's expectations.  It's quite the challenge alright, but somehow I rise to the occasion.  I teach those kids about respect, love, caring, and help inspire them to learn as quickly as I can with all my might.  Then I remember that I have purpose.


Sometimes when you go through each day, you don't realize the impact that you might be having on these students.  Then one day, all of a sudden you see that your differentiation, modification, heart, and soul and truly paying off.  Wow, it's such an amazing feeling!!!

The point of my post tonight, is to remind those of you that put every ounce of your being into your classroom and your students, not to forget to feel proud of what it is that you are doing!!  It is the best feeling in the world.  

As Rita Pierson stated, it is about "the value and importance of human connection."  Keep building those connections and working hard.  Remember, for some of these kids you are their only positive, only stability.


Monday, October 28, 2013

Autumn Math Centers!! Ohhh Yes! :)


Wowzers, there is always so much to do and such little time!!  

This past weekend I have finally gotten around to finalizing an autumn themed product.  I know that I'm a little late in getting this posted, but this product can be used well into November.  Adorable pumpkin and turkey clip art were used to create these adorable centers.  I have used this within my own classroom with my little kinders and they absolutely love it!!  Here is a peek at all of the autumn themed math centers that you will get with this product pack.  The CCSS focus is specifically on the Counting and Cardinality domain for Kindergarten.  Every center activity includes additional options and differentiation.  Oh, and P.S. - Did I mention that it is on sale for 22% off until Wednesday, October 30th?






Students practice sequencing numbers in a center with the color version. Or students can use the black and white version where they adhere all the feathers onto the turkey and write the numbers in sequence order independently.

Laminate these turkey pieces and students can use a wet erase marker to write the missing number.



Each player gets their own set of pumpkin cards. Each player picks a card at random and shows that numbers with cubes. Then the players compares who has the greater and fewer number of cubes or if the number of cubes are the same.

You can find this packet here: Autumn Themed Math Centers




Sunday, October 20, 2013

Teacher Planning Freebies... Say What??



Happy Sunday Morning to you all!  :)

After a very lazy-licious weekend full of lounging and relaxing, I finally got my you know what into gear and I just uploaded Lesson Planning Templates to my TpT store.  For those of you that have to write out actual lesson plans, this freebie may be very helpful/useful for you.  Since I am tenured, my school does not require me to write full lesson plans (only keep a plan book).  However, I do find myself using these planning sheets as a way to help me organize my thoughts and my plan of attack for some of my lessons.

While you are checking out the lesson planning templates, I hope that you will also check out the Guided Reading and Read Aloud Planning Sheets.  I have found these sheets to be very helpful for recording my guided reading game plan.  They have been wonderful for helping me organize and monitor my students by reading level. 

Both of these packs are FREE on my TpT store.  Make sure to check them out!  Hoping that you find them as helpful as I do!!

Here are the links for each of the above packs:




Friday, October 18, 2013

Inspiration for Ya'll (Me Included)!!

I know I can't live without quotes!! Here are some of my favorites. These are wonderful positive reminders about our chosen path as educators!



Monday, October 14, 2013

Looking for some inspiration?? Every Kid NEEDS a Champion

In a day in age where teachers receive so much criticism about the job that we do day after day... here is an uplifting video that will make you smile.

This was shared with me and I wanted to share this with all of you!  What a beautiful and inspirational talk about how every kid needs a champion.  It is one of the best invested 7 minutes and 49 seconds you will spend watching an inspirational talk.  I would LOVE to hear your feedback!  





"So teachers become great actors and great actresses.  And we come to work when we don't feel like it.  We listen to policy that doesn't make sense and we teach anyway.  We teach anyway because that's what we do.  Teaching and learning should bring joy.  How powerful would our world be if we had kids who were not afraid to take risks, who were not afraid to think, and who had a champion?  Every child deserves a champion - an adult who will never give up on them.  Who understands the power of connection and insists that they become the best they could possibly be.  Is this job tough?  You betcha!  But it is not impossible!  We can do this, we are educators, we are born to make a difference." 
- Rita Pierson

Blog Reveal


Oh my goodness!!!

I was going to hold off and post my big blog reveal with something fun and school related, but I honestly could not help myself!  I just want to show this brand spankin' new blog off!!  Megan Favre of http://abirdinhanddesigns.blogspot.com did an amazing job!!  I could not have asked for a more suiting design that matches me!

I would be honored if you all follow my blog for some upcoming happenings in my Kindergarten classroom!!