Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Taboo Double Post for Today!!!

Lock me up.  Throw away the key.  I am breaking bloggy etiquette by doing TWO posts today... but I wanted to remind you that there are two more hours where everything in my Teacher's Notebook shop is 40% off!

 That means flippy books are only $0.60 and classroom theme sets are just $6.00!

Hubby and I are heading to Detroit for two days... going to Greenfield Village & Henry Ford Museum and the zoo!!!!  I'm hoping I can sneak in a dinner to PF Chang's while we're up that way... cross your fingers for me!

I have blog posts scheduled... including an exciting product swap for tomorrow!

See ya this weekend!

If you missed my first post today (I know... double posting=BAD!) it's got lots of Vistaprint goodies and a link to a Groupon!  Click the pic below to check out what I made and link up your creations too!

Vistaprint Fever!

 **UPDATE- here's an off topic addition to this post... I'm having an impromptu FLASH SALE at Teacher's Notebook until midnight... everything is 40% off!!!*

Can I believe I just made my FIRST order of the summer last night?!  This coming from the woman who placed about 12 orders in 5 days last summer.  No joke.

So... I had a deal for lots of cheap stuff, free uploads, and free priority shipping if you spent $50.00!

And here's what I got!

This is a large car magnet that I put these signs on- I have already made these on cardstock and put magnets on the back of them, but they aren't sticking well... so I'll just cut this in fourths!

This one is the oversized postcard- front and back.  I will just cut them in half so kids can check out books from my library!

Here are some small magnets I will give out at open house for kids to display their good work on the fridge at home!

This is the small poster.  I put my classroom rules on it and now see that I left out an exclamation point... so I guess I'll be drawing one on when the items arrive.  On well!

Next up is the rack card.  I have made mine for silent and partner reading...

Sticky notes for kids to hang up when they are invited to "Lunch Bunch" on Friday...

And cards for kids to write out "Bucket Fillers" for each other- the backs are blank so they can write a message to their friend and then put it in our "Bucket Filler" pocket charts...

I also got some address labels for me and the hubs and a pad of boring sticky notes because they were the free ones.

Here's the greatest reveal... a screenshot of what I spent and what I saved.  Are you ready for this?  It's pretty awesome!
Love it!  Have you Vista Printed yet?  Did you blog about it?  Please remember to follow "Linky Party etiquette" and link back to this post if you join my linky party!  You can also click HERE to purchase a Groupon for $20.00 to get $80.00 worth of stuff!  Thanks to Kristen Kimbell for leaving me a comment about that.  I just bought one!  :)

Monday, July 30, 2012

My first "official" Monday Made It!

This summer I've made a ton of printables for my classroom, but I have just completed my first "official" Monday Made It!

I say official because I'm actually blogging about it on a Monday!  :)

Here are the two unofficial made its I've done this summer:

A new clipboard...

And crate seats...

And now for the big reveal of my first official Monday Made It!

These are currently being displayed on top of my microwave... but I'll be moving them to school soon!  I bought thick letters at Hobby Lobby.  I traced them on scrapbook paper, cut the letters out, and used Modge Podge to affix them to the letters.  Then I Modge Podged the heck over the top of the paper!

There were a few bumps in the paper which, for someone like me, was very distressing!  I hid them on the R and D with flowers!  To stick those brads in the A, I used my poker tool to poke a hole and then I just stuck the brads in.  It worked well- the flowers are stuck in the same way.  I put a brad in the middle of each, poked a hole, and stuck the brad in.

There you have it!  I can't wait to see what everyone else is sharing today too!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Where Did You Get Those Magnetic Book Holders???

On Friday, I did an all around my room tour on my blog (see it HERE) and the most common question people wondered is where I got those magnetic book holders... I got them from Calloway House.  Here is the link for them.

Today was the Michigan Blogger Meet Up and it was SO fun!  I'm exhausted from spending the day in Chicago yesterday and then loads of driving today to get to the meet-up on the other side of the state.  It was totally worth it though!  We met at Biggby which, for you non-Michiganders, is a delicious coffee shop!  So I got to have my favorite grande caramel mellow latte hot and skinny with no whip... YUM!  We had great conversation, goodie bags, homemade cookies, giveaways, and a great sharing of ideas!  Sadly, I didn't take any pictures...  :(  But I'm sure there will be some floating around in blogland soon from the responsible ones who were there!

Yesterday in Chicago, I shopped all day with a friend... where I bought a new watch that is super BLINGY...
 and some amazing perfume...

and then we met up with my hubby and her fiancee for dinner at Medieval Times!  It was *SO* much fun!!!!!  Our knight didn't win... sadly.  But there was a dancing pony.  A DANCING PONY.  That could kneel down on the ground.  And a falcon that flew around the arena.  And we ate dragon ribs, dragon legs, dragon scales, and dragon blood... all of which tasted oddly like pork, chicken, bread, and tomato soup.  :) Here's me and the hubs getting ready to cheer on the Black and White Knight!

My hubs has the week off, so I'm going to try really hard to do the right thing and not go to school so we can hang out.  We're going to go do something for a few days... but we don't know where or what yet!  So, if you don't see any blog updates you know I'm off doing something fabulous!

I will be back tomorrow though to link up with Fourth Grade Frolics for a Monday Made It!  I'm pretty psyched about what I made!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Put a Fork In it... My Room Is DONE!

I am so thrilled about my room!  :)

I took tons of pictures today so I decided to put them in a Smilebox slideshow... enjoy!  I'd love to hear your thoughts!

So, there you have it!

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Check out Brigid's linky for more classroom tours!
Is this totally un-couth?  Can I do two linky parties at once... because I'm also "Going on Tour"with Beg, Borrow, Steal!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

It's Beginning to Look a lot Like Christmas!

I was going to upload some new classroom pics and all that jazz, but I'm tired and emotionally drained.  So, I'll have to save the fun stuff for another day.

Some TpT sellers are celebrating CHRISTMAS IN JULY with 20% off in their TpT stores today... and I'm one of them!

The sale was supposed to end at midnight tonight, but TpT has been doing some upgrading today and so I'm extending my sale until midnight tomorrow.

Click the pic to head to my shop and take a peek if you'd like!

Click HERE to go to Elementary Matters to find other amazing teacher bloggers who are also celebrating with a Christmas in July sale!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

I Made Crate Seats!

I made some crate seats last night... here are my materials and my little helper...

And here are my final products...  I love them!

I got a few more room "things" ready too... here's my bunting-i-fied helpers chart...

My focus wall on the left, calendar on the right, and a snippet of my library...

My back wall- partner reading table in the middle, listening center stuff on the left... today my teacher neighbor got the great idea to put white paper across her chalkboard at the back of the room and then she helped me do the same!  Tomorrow I'm going to fix it up a bit, but I've got my Bucket Fillers up and am going to use the magnetic shelves (the six white ledge things, Mrs. Lamb- I got them HERE!) as a way to showcase books on topics the kiddos are learning about in math, science, and social studies...  And then I'll hang Daily Five things across the top- small anchor charts, expectations, etc...

 Here's a closer view of my focus wall...  You can get the signs I made for free... click HERE to head to that post for more info!

And, last... don't tell my husband!  This is my massive collection of containers that I might someday use for something!  Yikes!

Monday, July 23, 2012

You Know You're a Teacher When...

Today I consolidated some stuff in my room and was left with FIVE empty crates!  I brought three of them home and plan to make crate seats with them.

When I got home, I went to hose them off outside.

My hose has a dial with settings like rinse, power wash, drizzle, etc...

Well... one of them made me laugh my self silly in the middle of my driveway so I'm sure everyone who happened to be driving by thought I was a complete nut.

But, one of the settings is "bucket filler".  So, naturally, the dork teacher in me said "HAHAHAHA!  My hose is a bucket filler!".


Enjoy the laugh on me on this HOT HOT Monday!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Focus Wall Freebies!

Hi friends!

I have a busy day of laundry, groceries, and cutting out laminating ahead of me and wanted to hop on and show you my newest freebie before getting started on my "to dos".

One of the things I'm super excited about bringing back to my classroom is an ELA Focus Wall.  Teaching two grade levels for the past two years made it difficult to use one due to differing spelling words and ELA skills each week.  So, I had gotten away from a focus wall... but I am SO excited to use one again this year with my 3rd graders.

If you don't use a focus wall, here are some of the reasons why you should... in my humble opinion...
*Everything you are studying for the week is visible to your students
*Your students will come to check and refer to the focus wall during the week (which is mega cool!)
*The focus wall is a fabulous way to immerse your students in ELA vocabulary... words like genre, specific grammar and comprehension skills... those things are explicitly in front of them- and you'll use that high level vocabulary more too with the focus wall there
*It's a great anchor to help your students connect and organize their learning
*Talk about explicit teaching!  A focus wall really helps you "lay it all out there" for your students!

Here's a picture of my old focus wall when I just taught 2nd grade- this one is about three years old:

And here is my new, improved 3rd grade-i-fied focus wall...

Each week the story title, grammar skill, genre, author's purpose, and comprehension strategy changed.  We added spelling and vocabulary words and, with the vocab, I always had students put them in ABC order... which is totally becoming a lost skill, I feel.

So, since I'm going all out with the colors and buntings, I made some new focus wall signs to share with you!  I'll be working on updating the genre, author's purpose, and comprehension strategy signs later on too so that all of my fonts are the same.

Anywho, you can click the picture below to head over to my TpT store to check them out.  This was a free file, but I had lots of requests to add more cards.  The set now has 14 cards and is available for purchase at my shop for just $2.00. 

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Blog Hop!

I guess techinically this is for newbie bloggers... but I thought I'd link up to say hello and find some new blogs to follow as well!  I'm not sure who organized the hop, but I found it at Grade 3 is the Place for Me!


1.)  What state are you in?

2.)  What is your current teaching position?
I just finished a stint of teaching a 1st/2nd split class for two years, did four years of 2nd before that, and have been hired in a new district to teach 3rd grade ELA.  I'm super excited!

3.)  What is your teaching experience??
See the answer to question two!  I also taught preschool for two years before getting hired for 2nd grade.

4.)  When did you start blogging?
June of 2011- it's one of the best things I've done professionally!  I love meeting new, amazing teachers and sharing ideas in this way.

5.)  Share some blogging tips or a resource.
A bloggy tip... in the beginning it's really easy to get swept up in the number of followers you have and people always want to know how they can get more quickly.  Blogging is all about relationships and networking- if you want your blog to grow, visit other blogs!  Leave comments and interact with other bloggers.  Share ideas!  Share stories!  Share pictures!  Blogging is an amazing way to enhance your classroom and yourself professionally... as well as make new friends!

Off to hop and through and meet some new bloggy friends!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Classroom Set-Up- Day 3

Yesterday I felt like such a celebrity!  While shopping with friends at a local teacher's store, one of them said my name, which led to a teacher in line asking if I was THE Christina Bainbridge!  We had a nice little chat... but, I feel like such a jerk because I forgot to ask her name!  So, Teacher's Center friend, if you're reading this, let me know!  :)  I know there are other HUGE bloggers who have had that happen before, but it was my first time... how exciting!

And now... for the pictures from what I did in my classroom today.

First... let me remind you how it looked when I left on Wednesday:

So... after six hours today, it looks like this- here's the traditional "view form the door":

Here's our meeting area- imagine 29 3rd graders here... yikes!... I LOVE where I put the cloud paper on the spaces above the windows!  :)

Here's a shot of my "desk" area.  I'm going deskless this year!

View from behind my area- the crates and books on the one group of desks are pretty much all I have left to organize.  I have SO many "teacher" picture books.  I need to sort them all and organize them into how I'll use them for ELA.

And, though all of my bulletin boards have paper and borders up, this is my first finished one.  *Love* it!

So, that's what I've accomplished since Monday in my room.  And now that it looks pretty, I can think about what I'm going to teach!  I even brought home one of my teacher editions to look over this weekend.

Next week's classroom agenda:  ELA focus wall, organize books, get my birthday bulletin board up, and organize my craft "stuff".  Right now it's in a box in the closet.

Tonight the hubby and I are going to see the musical "The Wedding Singer".  I'm SO looking forward to a dinner out and a night of fun... it's been a tiring week!  Hope you have a fun Friday night as well!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

It Looks Like a Classroom- Day 2

My name is Christina.  And I am a Target Dollar Spot pocket chart hoarder.

It's sick, people.  Here are 24 of them.  TWENTY FOUR.  What am I even going to do with these?  Who knows!  But I have to buy them.

So, today I got to my classroom at about 7:00am.  I worked until 10:30, ran some errands until about noon, and then stayed until 4:30pm.  I am now enjoying the AC and the fresh "just showered" feeling while getting ready to show you my pics from day 2.  I'm so excited about the progress I made today!


Here's what it looked like when I left yesterday:

And when I left today... for consistency's sake, here's the view from the door:

And here's the view from behind my table.  I'm going desk-less this year!

My student desks still have stuff all over them, but a lot of stuff is put away and ALL of my boxes are unloaded!  Tomorrow I'm going teacher shopping with friends but I'll be back in action on Friday!!!!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Unpacking and Settling In... Day 1

First up...

Congrats to Jessica at Mrs. Heeren's Happenings, Charleen, and Kerry for sharing my same taste in cuteness!  They all agreed that January is the cutest month on my behavior bingo set!  Just look at those little kittens and try not to get all warm and fuzzy inside!  They are so STINKIN' cute!

So, I'll be sending you three the whole pack for free!  You can click the picture above to go to yesterday's blog post to learn more about the pack if you'd like!

Now for the meat of the post today.

I am so tired!  I had an early morning doctor's appointment, followed by a grande skinny caramelmellow latte no whip at Biggby, which then led me to Target where I promptly bought MORE pocket charts (I need help, people!).  All of these events took place about 30 miles from where I live so then I drove back down and resigned (insert bittersweet feelings here) and then I went to my new classroom to begin day 1 of unpacking and settling in.  I have been doing that in the 98-ish degree heat for about the last five hours.

Here's what it looked like when I opened my door at 10am.  At this time my anxiety level was about an 8 on a scale of 1-10:

 And... when I left 5 hours later it looked like a tornado had torn through!  BUT... all of my boxes that were along the wall and stuffed into every conceivable space in the room are unpacked!  Not necessarily put away... but everything's out!

Tonight I'm going to ask the hubby to put together two bookcases for me so I can organize my classroom library, which honestly is a bulk of that mess- the baskets are stashed everywhere but mostly in that built-in-shelf on the right.  I'm going to use a bit of that for my library and put more books across the front of the room.  I think once I can get that organized, I can start putting other stuff away!  I'm hoping anyway!

Stay tuned for day 2 pics tomorrow!
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