Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Whole Brain Wednesday - Amping it up!

Anyone else feeling in a bit of a slump this time of the year!? The snow days, delays & early releases have me in a mixed-up teaching slump! I can't wait to have normal schedule, full days and full weeks! I think my dog is one of the only ones who is still enjoying all this New England snow!

So this brings me to the topic of today's Whole Brain Teaching...

Today I'm going to share how I'm "amping' up the WBT in my room during this winter weather slump!

You know the feeling... (or at least you do if you live somewhere where it snows a lot!)
Delays... 2 hours off of instruction time, kids all amped up from extra sleep or play time!
Early Releases... If it's announced early, all day feels like a half day, which we know is out of the normal schedule and crazy! If it's announced part way through the day.... chaos ensues as kiddos go to the office to call home or as it begins to snow and all eyes are out the window.
And then, Snow Days... one fewer day of summer and don't even get me started on the day after when they're still all jacked up about playing in the snow!

So how can WBT help get you through the winter slump?! I'll tell you...

#1 Amp up the Rules!

We practice the rules every day... but what about practicing them multiple times during the day? Before your reading block, after recess, before specials! Help the kiddos remember the super-easy-to-follow rules that make the classroom so successful! If you don't know about the rules... click the picture above to check them out. Or, if you need a set of rules for your classroom, go visit my TPT page here.

Also, encourage your kiddos to help their friends out by holding up a number to represent the rule a friend is breaking. It makes your job easier, and let's be honest kiddos love to boss each other around ;)

#2 Amp up the Super Improvers Wall!

If you don't know about the Super Improver Wall, check it out by clicking the photo above! I am handing out improver stars left and right since the winter slump hit! Even if it only is a burst of motivation, it's enough to get us through a few more minutes! I'm giving them out for even the tiniest improvements... YES! You started your independent work right away, improver star! YES! You came to the rug quietly, improver star!
Check out some of my WBT Super Improver Walls here.

#3 Amp up the scoreboard!

Click the picture above to read about the scoreboard! The scoreboard is SO easy! It doesn't have to be fancy, it can just be a smile & a frown drawn on the white board. So there is NO excuse not to amp it up. Give out those smiles & frownies constantly... every lesson, every transition, every time you use class/yes, etc.
And of course make sure you follow through with a little fun time at the end of the day. We do a lot of games from ABCya on the Promethean board before buses as a reward for more smiles. We also have played Around the World and other fun (& quick) games as rewards. Some teachers in my building do an extra GoNoodle video at the end of the day for their reward. There are lots of other things you could do too that are quick and fun!

Hope you're motivated to Amp It Up with the WBT to help get you through the winter slump!

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Sunday, February 15, 2015

Donors Choose

Hey all! I recently had a project funded by donor's choose and now have a teacher-friend who is trying to get her project funded. She doesn't have an iPads in her classroom, and is trying to raise money for an iPad. My project was also for iPads and I am seeing first hand how exciting learning is when an iPad is involved!

Consider helping Mrs. Mainetti by visiting her Donors Choose project! Until Februrary 22nd, donations are doubled with the code SPARK. So even just $10 will help SO much as it is doubled to $20!

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Saturday, February 14, 2015

Another Saturday version of 5 for Friday!

Hey all, I'm back with 5 for Friday on a Saturday (again!)

Super excited to share a non-related teaching item! I just became a Jamberry Consultant because I am IN LOVE with the nail wraps & lacquers! It's a great company & I'm getting paid to have pretty nails!

Email me if you'd like a sample! All I need is your # sample selection and address. I also can host a facebook party for you... I do 95% of the work and you get free stuff!

At our school we have a H.E.A.R.T. motto... it stands for Helpful, Effort, Acceptance, Respect, Thoughtful... the kiddos can earn Hearts from teachers when they display Heart qualities. Their hearts go up on the wall and have created these beautiful giant hearts in the hallway! We took Valentine's photos in front of them for our parents and put them into cards! The kiddos thought it was fabulous because they got to stand on a little table we pushed up against the hearts haha!

I just had to share this cute picture... we had to change our "assigned" rug seats this week because we are officially too big to sit around the rug comfortably. It's amazing how much these kiddos have grown. When we were all set up with our new spots they insisted I take a picture of them, so I had to oblige!

We are staring to learn about money in math! I am in love with the math interactive notebook by Blair Turner, I bought and the money activities are probably my favorites so far! We need to buy bigger math notebooks next year because we have had to start making the foldables on paper instead of in our notebooks :(

Last but not least, on this lovely Valentine's Day, I have to share my February classroom door...

If you want to know more about classroom doors, go visit my post about it here.

Happy Valentine's Day!

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