Management, Crayons, and some Freebies!







Our second week in first grade has come and gone and I have to tell you I cannot be more thankful that it has ended with a 3 day weekend!  Labor Day always has good timing.





This week we practiced, reinforced, and practiced a bit more all of the good habits that we learned in our first week.  In my class I present my expectations not as rules, but as "good habits".  We chat about good habits (saying please and thank you!) versus bad habits (picking your nose...) and what kinds of habits we should form in the first grade.  Our habits include hallway behavior, carpet behavior, following the attention signal, and moderating voice levels.  










Together we do a looks like/sounds like chart for each habit (I taught one each of the first 4 days of school).  I model the habit, then I have a small group of students model the habit, and then I have the entire class try it out, all the while I am praising and reinforcing like crazy.  If I feel like they can handle it we even model a non-example, which they always think is wildly funny.  We hang up our charts by the door and reference them often!










This has worked like a charm for me and I know my students know exactly what I expect of them throughout the day!  Hurray for a beautiful management start to our year!  That is certainly an answer to many prayers!





In other news, I made these cute little crayon cans to help with the crazy crayon chaos that is first grade.  Starting day one there were lost crayons on the floor, someone couldn't find their pink (and was pretty sure it was a life and death situation!), etc. So, I decided to end all of our suffering.  I put these little crayon cans up next to my pencil buckets and student supply area and it has been such a beautiful thing!















And super easy.  Grab a bunch of 8 oz. cans of tomato sauce and some pretty papers and you are good to go.  I just cut the paper to size, and wrapped/glued it around the can.  I pasted on my own little labels, which you can grab here if you like.  Also, wanting them to be especially sturdy, I wrapped my cans with packing tape to give them that protective laminated effect.  These have worked out great!





Another little bright spot of my week was when this baby was delivered to my classroom.  










It came in a big mysterious bag during our math workshop and the kids, for whatever reason, were so excited.  But not as excited as teacher!  This is the best pencil sharpener of my life.  It sharpens so very quickly (like 2.8 seconds) and it is so so quiet.  It also has a little light that comes on when the pencil is satisfactorily sharpened, which is very handy for when I let a few students sharpen pencils at the end of the day.  You know how they always seem to jam and crank the pencils into the little hole like there is no tomorrow?  Problem solved!  My pencil sharpener came from office depot, {here}.










To go with our fancy new pencil sharpener I created these little sharp/dull labels.  I just slapped them on some of those little buckets you can find anywhere (like Target of course) and we are good to go!  Click on the picture below or right here for these little labels!










Life in first grade is good.  This weekend I have been working hard to take a mental break from things and I feel better equipped to tackle next week and this next month!  I love September and I'm really counting on it to be a beautiful month!  Here is my September Currently.




Have an amazing Labor Day!

Management, Crayons, and some Freebies!


Our second week in first grade has come and gone and I have to tell you I cannot be more thankful that it has ended with a 3 day weekend!  Labor Day always has good timing.

This week we practiced, reinforced, and practiced a bit more all of the good habits that we learned in our first week.  In my class I present my expectations not as rules, but as "good habits".  We chat about good habits (saying please and thank you!) versus bad habits (picking your nose...) and what kinds of habits we should form in the first grade.  Our habits include hallway behavior, carpet behavior, following the attention signal, and moderating voice levels.  


Together we do a looks like/sounds like chart for each habit (I taught one each of the first 4 days of school).  I model the habit, then I have a small group of students model the habit, and then I have the entire class try it out, all the while I am praising and reinforcing like crazy.  If I feel like they can handle it we even model a non-example, which they always think is wildly funny.  We hang up our charts by the door and reference them often!


This has worked like a charm for me and I know my students know exactly what I expect of them throughout the day!  Hurray for a beautiful management start to our year!  That is certainly an answer to many prayers!

In other news, I made these cute little crayon cans to help with the crazy crayon chaos that is first grade.  Starting day one there were lost crayons on the floor, someone couldn't find their pink (and was pretty sure it was a life and death situation!), etc. So, I decided to end all of our suffering.  I put these little crayon cans up next to my pencil buckets and student supply area and it has been such a beautiful thing!



And super easy.  Grab a bunch of 8 oz. cans of tomato sauce and some pretty papers and you are good to go.  I just cut the paper to size, and wrapped/glued it around the can.  I pasted on my own little labels, which you can grab here if you like.  Also, wanting them to be especially sturdy, I wrapped my cans with packing tape to give them that protective laminated effect.  These have worked out great!

Another little bright spot of my week was when this baby was delivered to my classroom.  


It came in a big mysterious bag during our math workshop and the kids, for whatever reason, were so excited.  But not as excited as teacher!  This is the best pencil sharpener of my life.  It sharpens so very quickly (like 2.8 seconds) and it is so so quiet.  It also has a little light that comes on when the pencil is satisfactorily sharpened, which is very handy for when I let a few students sharpen pencils at the end of the day.  You know how they always seem to jam and crank the pencils into the little hole like there is no tomorrow?  Problem solved!  My pencil sharpener came from office depot, {here}.


To go with our fancy new pencil sharpener I created these little sharp/dull labels.  I just slapped them on some of those little buckets you can find anywhere (like Target of course) and we are good to go!  Click on the picture below or right here for these little labels!


Life in first grade is good.  This weekend I have been working hard to take a mental break from things and I feel better equipped to tackle next week and this next month!  I love September and I'm really counting on it to be a beautiful month!  Here is my September Currently.


Have an amazing Labor Day!

First Week!





My goodness!  I apologize for all but disappearing for awhile there.  You may have heard that it is back to school season...





We had our first day on Tuesday and gosh, it has been an amazingly exciting AND exhausting experience.   My new little friends are adorable and eager to learn!  They are also very naive and clueless as to what we do at school, so this week was spent teaching, reinforcing, and reteaching first grade routines and habits.  I put a lot of planning into this and it is turning out so very well.  Thank goodness my summer nightmares of classroom chaos haven't come true yet.





 On the first day my school had a little photo op. out front.  It was kind of really awesome.  And kind of really awkward.  Not knowing what to do with my hands, this is me awkwardly holding Oliver Twist... 










Anywho, I'm feeling pretty good about life so far.  As to my classroom, it is turning out pretty well although I do have a few loose ends to tie up here and there.  I probably always will.  There is always something to improve, but for the most part I'm loving the functionality of my room this year.  I looked at 14 trillion Pinterest pictures and about that many teacher blogs to figure out what elements I wanted in my calendar area.  










I also knew that I needed to make my personal teacher space as functional and as comfortable and as true-to-Bethany as possible.  So here it is.















This right here is my favorite little corner of my room.  It is a little bit of home for me.  A cozy lamp from Target {here}, a picture of my dear husband, Yankee fragrance spheres {here}, my favorite lotions EVER {here}, my reminder to keep calm and sane and that it is not the end of the world {here}, and of course some Cherry Coke.  





I was a pretty extensive planner this summer, but I could never quite decide on a classroom job chart that I loved and that would work perfectly for my room.  Yesterday I realized I'd better get that up in my room soon or I would loose order (and sanity) very quickly.  So I got out my jumbo glue stick and threw one together.  Easy. 










I got a white poster, some little crayon die cuts from Walmart, these cute little pockets {here} and a sharpie.  















Piece of cake. Click here for my "Class Jobs" header, if you're interested.





Alrightsy, there is a tiny glimpse into my classroom this week.  Hopefully I can tie up my loose ends soon and post more pictures!  Until then, have a beautiful and most relaxing weekend!












First Week!


My goodness!  I apologize for all but disappearing for awhile there.  You may have heard that it is back to school season...

We had our first day on Tuesday and gosh, it has been an amazingly exciting AND exhausting experience.   My new little friends are adorable and eager to learn!  They are also very naive and clueless as to what we do at school, so this week was spent teaching, reinforcing, and reteaching first grade routines and habits.  I put a lot of planning into this and it is turning out so very well.  Thank goodness my summer nightmares of classroom chaos haven't come true yet.

 On the first day my school had a little photo op. out front.  It was kind of really awesome.  And kind of really awkward.  Not knowing what to do with my hands, this is me awkwardly holding Oliver Twist... 


Anywho, I'm feeling pretty good about life so far.  As to my classroom, it is turning out pretty well although I do have a few loose ends to tie up here and there.  I probably always will.  There is always something to improve, but for the most part I'm loving the functionality of my room this year.  I looked at 14 trillion Pinterest pictures and about that many teacher blogs to figure out what elements I wanted in my calendar area.  


I also knew that I needed to make my personal teacher space as functional and as comfortable and as true-to-Bethany as possible.  So here it is.



This right here is my favorite little corner of my room.  It is a little bit of home for me.  A cozy lamp from Target {here}, a picture of my dear husband, Yankee fragrance spheres {here}, my favorite lotions EVER {here}, my reminder to keep calm and sane and that it is not the end of the world {here}, and of course some Cherry Coke.  

I was a pretty extensive planner this summer, but I could never quite decide on a classroom job chart that I loved and that would work perfectly for my room.  Yesterday I realized I'd better get that up in my room soon or I would loose order (and sanity) very quickly.  So I got out my jumbo glue stick and threw one together.  Easy. 


I got a white poster, some little crayon die cuts from Walmart, these cute little pockets {here} and a sharpie.  



Piece of cake. Click here for my "Class Jobs" header, if you're interested.

Alrightsy, there is a tiny glimpse into my classroom this week.  Hopefully I can tie up my loose ends soon and post more pictures!  Until then, have a beautiful and most relaxing weekend!




Alphabet Chart Freebie!





Today is my birthday and I am all kinds of happy!  You know the feeling? So I thought I'd pop on here and post a freebie!  This little alphabet chart is nothing new and nothing too fancy, but it sure is helpful in the beginning of the year when you're teaching those beginning letter sounds.  Enjoy, friends!










Click the picture above or click right here!  Have a great day!



Alphabet Chart Freebie!


Today is my birthday and I am all kinds of happy!  You know the feeling? So I thought I'd pop on here and post a freebie!  This little alphabet chart is nothing new and nothing too fancy, but it sure is helpful in the beginning of the year when you're teaching those beginning letter sounds.  Enjoy, friends!


Click the picture above or click right here!  Have a great day!

Utah Teacher/Blogger Meet-Up...and Bambi



This past Friday I was able to go to the Utah Teacher/Blogger Meet-Up! I confess I was really nervous to go and introduce myself to new people, especially people I admire so much, but it turned out to be an amazing experience.  I have never been amongst such kind and lovely ladies!










The event was hosted by Natalie and Rachelle from What the Teacher Wants, Lindsey from The Teacher Wife, and Nikki from Melonheadz.  What beautiful people!  After meeting each of them (and receiving several sweet hugs!) I was so glad that I put aside my jitters and came.  I'm sure I gave out TMI and I'm sure I said something totally stupid (I tend to do this when I'm nervous), but I had a great time! And, I totally lucked out and won a few prizes!  I got a cute gift bag full of DoTERRA goodies from Natalie, including this lip balm which has utterly changed my life!  It has a calming and mood-lifting effect and may stay in my pocket for um...forever!










I am so grateful for the opportunity that I had to meet such wonderful teachers!  After the meet-up I felt instantly excited about the quickly-approaching school year.  I've been making my Target runs, typing up my first week plans, and setting goals to help this be the greatest year possible for me and my kids! I am just about ready to dive in head first to this year!  

However, there is one more thing to do before we can start with all this Back to School business.  I have an August birthday and I've always tried to use my birthday as a good last summer hurrah for everybody. That being said, tonight my family is holding a pinewood derby celebration!  Here is my entry...I call it, "The Great Prince of the Forest".  Wish me luck at the races!








Utah Teacher/Blogger Meet-Up...and Bambi


This past Friday I was able to go to the Utah Teacher/Blogger Meet-Up! I confess I was really nervous to go and introduce myself to new people, especially people I admire so much, but it turned out to be an amazing experience.  I have never been amongst such kind and lovely ladies!


The event was hosted by Natalie and Rachelle from What the Teacher Wants, Lindsey from The Teacher Wife, and Nikki from Melonheadz.  What beautiful people!  After meeting each of them (and receiving several sweet hugs!) I was so glad that I put aside my jitters and came.  I'm sure I gave out TMI and I'm sure I said something totally stupid (I tend to do this when I'm nervous), but I had a great time! And, I totally lucked out and won a few prizes!  I got a cute gift bag full of DoTERRA goodies from Natalie, including this lip balm which has utterly changed my life!  It has a calming and mood-lifting effect and may stay in my pocket for um...forever!


I am so grateful for the opportunity that I had to meet such wonderful teachers!  After the meet-up I felt instantly excited about the quickly-approaching school year.  I've been making my Target runs, typing up my first week plans, and setting goals to help this be the greatest year possible for me and my kids! I am just about ready to dive in head first to this year!  

However, there is one more thing to do before we can start with all this Back to School business.  I have an August birthday and I've always tried to use my birthday as a good last summer hurrah for everybody. 
That being said, tonight my family is holding a pinewood derby celebration!  Here is my entry...I call it, "The Great Prince of the Forest".  Wish me luck at the races!