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Hello Friends!! Welcome :D Hopefully you are enjoying a little summer drink with a festive umbrella!! You are in for some fun! And I'm so glad you are here :) 


So this summer the only book on my reading list is Debbie Dillers' Math Stations : Work Stations you can count on


The school where I teach, every teacher is subject specific. Each teacher is either a STEM or an ELA teacher. This past school year I was a first grade ELA teacher, however, after graciously being given what I wanted by admin, I will be teaching math to grades 1 and 2. 

So the reason I have chosen to read Debbie Diller's book is because first of all I love all her books, second of all I need a little refresher in math and work stations.


For this week only (July 2-July 9), this item will be free!! After that, it was be moved back to it's original price of $3! So be sure to download it by clicking the image below!

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Editable-Classroom-and-Bathroom-Rules-Posters-2606197



As a teacher mom, I thoroughly enjoy my summers. However, it never fails that I get suckered into teaching summer school. I mean the money is really good, and I enjoy helping out, but every year I tell myself I'm not gonna do it, but then when admin goes looking for someone to teach, I'm always the sucker they go to!

But, on my bucket list this summer I have some great things!

First thing on my summer bucket list for 2016, I am taking my family to Disney in one short week! Everyone is so excited! I am a mother to 4 kiddos, ages range from 2 to 11, and each one of them is super excited! I have to admit, my hubs and I are also anxious to go.

The second item on my summer bucket list for 2016 is to complete another project in my living room. Although it has been a SUPER s-l-o-w process, it is getting done. Over spring break I was able to paint the living room, and over late July/early August I hope to pull up the carpet and put hardwood flooring down! Then eventually buy all new furniture for this room, but that'll probably be an October/November purchase!

The third and final item on my bucket list for 2016 is to just enjoy it. Throughout the school year we are in go-mode. Between 2 boys in different leagues in football (fall), basketball (winter), and baseball (spring) and a daughter in baton (year-round) and a 2 year old, we are CONSTANTLY on the go. I always forget how much I love cooking, until summer time! Throughout the school year, we are rushed with quick meals, or pizza, subway, or chinese. The summer I have the time to really enjoy diving into my grandmothers' old cookbooks and trying new recipes.

Feel free to leave a comment below about what is on your summer bucket list.






Make sure to hop to the next stop to grab the limited time freebies!!

http://teachingadventuresinthemitten.blogspot.com/2016/06/schools-out-blog-blowout.html
 

 
How fun is this?!? I am linking up with the super cute Anna from Creative Teacher Resources for a new linky! It's all about reflecting and sharing past idea, projects, lessons, projects, units, crafts, etc and link up with others and see what they have done in the past as well.
 
So being that it's summer and I'm relaxing with my babies and all is well....I was going through different blogposts to features as my first #TBT for today, and I came across this gem, Why did I decide to become a teacher again? I had written in 8 days into school this past school year :) 

Hope you enjoy it as much as I did going back and re-reading it :) What inspirational stories do you have about teaching? Feel free to share in comments below or on the blog post, Why did I decide to become a teacher again?
Good Morning!

Today I'm linking up with some fabulous teachers, and Cyndie over at Chalk One Up For the Teacher to showcase 2 items that are 50% for today only!!

The 2 items I have put on sale have been two of my best sellers this spring!

The first product I have marked down 50% from $4.50 to $2.25 is my Interactive Mini-Foldables for Story Elements and Reading Comprehension Strategies. This product is perfect for small group or independent work.



Comprehension Mini-Foldable Books

Interactive, engaging, and fun! 

Your students will flip for these mini flip books!! This was created as a supplemental activity for small group, as well as independent time at the students desk. These can be used with any fictional text!! This is a double sided book. Once you print, there is just ONE just cutting the story elements foldable from the reading comprehension foldable!

This product includes:
1. 2 different mini flip books- one for story elements & one for reading comprehension strategies
2. instruction for printing and assembling flip-book 2 sided

The story elements mini book focuses on characters, setting, beginning, middle, and end.

The reading comprehension book focuses on predicting, questioning, connecting, visualizing, comparing, and summarizing.

This product can be used with any fictional text and is appropriate for grades 1-2, and even lower level 3rd graders for the beginning of the year assessment to see what students know :)

The other product I have marked down 50% from $7.00 to $3.50 is my Goods & Services, Needs & Wants: A Day 10 Unit Plan. This product was perfect for teaching goods and services to my first grade students!

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Goods-Services-Needs-Wants-A-10-day-unit-plan-2518443


1.4.A.1 Economic Choices - Goods & Services

This is an all inclusive 10 day unit plan for everything you need to teach the social studies standard 1.4.A.1 (Describe economic choices people make about goods and services). 

This pack includes:
♥plans for 10 days worth of teaching
♥books for this unit include- The Big Green Pocketbook & A Chair for my Mother
♥Links to SafeShare YouTube Videos so you are able to watch the videos included in this pack with your class
♥2 Interactive Google Classroom Sorts- one for sorting goods & services and one for sorting needs & wants also with the directions as to how to use it
♥pre-test
♥20 task cards to sort goods/services & exit ticket
♥Cut & Paste goods & services sort
♥2 Exit tickets showing what students know about goods & services
♥Response sheet to The Big Green Pocketbook
♥Cut & Paste needs & wants sort
♥24 Task Cards to sort needs/wants & exit ticket
♥List All Recording Sheet for students to list all needs/wants
♥Math activity- including copies of quarters, dimes, nickels, and pennies, and dollars for students to use (if you don't have access to fake money)
♥24 Money Word Problems & recording sheet (2.MD.8)
♥5 Goods/Services/Needs/Wants Passages with Comprehension questions to use in small group instruction, independent work, or homework.This product includes suggested texts


All that for only $3.50!! These deals are only for today only!!!

Make sure to check out the other great deals from sellers over at Chalk One Up For the Teacher.




Hello good friends!! Hopefully you are enjoying summer break and the beginning days of summer! With summer, comes many teachers retiring, taking leaves of absence, moving schools, or leaving the teaching profession. This means schools are looking for teachers to hire!! Maybe you are fresh outta college, or a few years out of college putting your time in with substituting (thank you for this by the way, we all need good subs), or maybe you are relocating, or just looking for a fresh start! Whatever your situation may be, I am writing a 3 part blog series about Jobs in Teaching! Check out the first part Jobs in Teaching : Land the Interview, and part two Jobs in Teaching : Rocking the Interview.

Ok, let me start by saying, I am no NO expert! I am a first grade teacher, just finished up my 3rd year in Maryland. However, I do have some insight into the teacher hiring process! Before going back to school to be a teacher, I worked in the Human Resources department for my county's public school system. I witnessed first hand the type of educators that got hired, as well as the ones that were looked over. I worked in that position for 5 years, and loved every minute of it. BUT, I always wanted to be a teacher, so with the support of my family and co-workers I was able to go to school full-time while working to make that dream a reality!

So, let's get to the good stuff! This blog post is all about those teachers that have been in the profession for a while. Maybe you are looking for a change, whether that be a change in positions or a change in schools, I have some tips to help you decide if now is the time for change, and what to do (and not do) to get noticed.

Have you maxed out your potential? So when thinking about your current situation--do you feel like you have gotten everything you can from it? Are you still being challenged? Is a new position/school going to challenge you? I debated applying for a school that is about 10 minutes from my house, compared to my 45 minute commute. It was a much smaller school. In reality, the shorter driving time would have been nice, however, I love growing as an educator, and being challenged by my current co-workers. I decided against putting in for the other position for this very reason.




  
Are you the big fish in a small pond? This idea piggy-backs off the previous one. When you become the big fish, and everyone comes to you to learn new things, it can sometimes be draining. You may no longer feel that you are learning everything. I think it's important as educators to be life-long learners. Once you reach a point in your career when you are no longer learning, it's time for a change. I have been so blessed with my teammates, from whom I have learned so much!





Do your homework. This is the same initial advice I gave in my 2nd blog post about rocking the interview. Same stands true for veteran teachers. Just because you have rocked it at your current school for the past 11 years, doesn't mean you will WOW a prospective school by knowing NOTHING about their schools' specific programs. Is the school you are interviewing for Title 1? Does it have great technology? What is their mission statement? These are all things worth looking into! If the school has a website much information can be found there. Or maybe there is a district or county website that can be insightful to your research. Walking into an interview knowing about the schools specific programs shows the administration and interview team that you are interested enough in their school to do your homework!



Don't hate. What I mean by that is don't go into an interview with a bad attitude about your current school or team. You NEVER know who the interview panel knows from your current school. You may be jaded from a situation at your school. You may have been up for a grade level change, and then the principal gave it to the newbie teacher. Nonetheless, the interview panel doesn't need to hear any of that! Not only doesn't it matter, but spewing all that negativity just makes you look bad.




If you have any tips on changing positions or schools for veteran teachers, please feel free to leave them in the comments below! If you need some more tips about Rocking the Interview, click here! Be sure to check out the first blog post in the series, Landing an Interview!

Happy summer friends!

Follow me on Facebook, TpT, Instagram, or Pinterest for all things Teaching!!



Hello good friends!! Hopefully you have started your summer break, although I know that some of my Canadian friends have a few more weeks, hang in there!!! With summer, comes many teachers retiring, taking leaves of absence, moving schools, or leaving the teaching profession. This means schools are looking for teachers to hire!! Maybe you are fresh outta college, or a few years out of college putting your time in with substituting (thank you for this by the way, we all need good subs), or maybe you are relocating, or just looking for a fresh start! Whatever your situation may be, I am writing a 3 part blog series about Jobs in Teaching! Check out the first part Jobs in Teaching : Land the Interview.

Ok, let me start by saying, I am no NO expert! I am a first grade teacher, just finished up my 3rd year in Maryland. However, I do have some insight into the teacher hiring process! Before going back to school to be a teacher, I worked in the Human Resources department for my county's public school system. I witnessed first hand the type of educators that got hired, as well as the ones that were looked over. I worked in that position for 5 years, and loved every minute of it. BUT, I always wanted to be a teacher, so with the support of my family and co-workers I was able to go to school full-time while working to make that dream a reality!

So, let's get to the good stuff! This blog post is all about rocking the interview. Some schools/districts/counties have hundreds or even thousands of educators applying to them, and then they only interview a handful! So here are some tips to help with rocking out the interview.


Do your homework. Is the school you are interviewing for Title 1? Does it have great technology? What is their mission statement? These are all things worth looking into! If the school has a website much information can be found there. Or maybe there is a district or county website that can be insightful to your research. Walking into an interview knowing about the schools specific programs shows the administration and interview team that you are interested enough in their school to do your homework!




 Dress appropriately. Please don't take offense to this! I sat in on interviews for my teammates 2 summers ago when we had 2 first grade positions. We interviewed 12 candidates. At least 4 of them were dressed inappropriately. So what does that mean? One of the candidates had cleavage showing---this is not professional. One candidate had a knee length skirt, which could have been professional, but it was super tight and had a slit going up the back that I could almost see her lady parts--again not professional. One candidate was wearing tights as pants, and everyone in the room could see her undergarments--not professional. And the last unprofessional candidate was dressed very relaxed with gym shorts and a tank top--again, not professional. I would recommend high neck lines, longer skirts, no undergarments being shown. Remember you are selling yourself, interviewing for a spot in their school, are you representing their school well by what you are wearing?


Be specific with your answers. Refer to your own experience. When asked a question, such as, "how would you deal with a conflict with a co-worker?" Don't dance around the question--the interview team wants to see your conflict-resolution skills with a question like this. If you've never had a conflict with a co-worker, say that, but also add that maybe you had a conflict with a classmate, and explain how you handled it. Use whatever experience you have, even if it's not educationally related. If asked about the common core, use your experience, be honest if you don't have any experience with it, but use the experience with whatever curriculum you have used in your teaching experience.



Be gracious and say thank you. When your interview is over, shake each person on the interview teams hands, look them in the eye, and thank them for their time. Manners can get you a long way. Taking along a few (maybe 5) pre-written thank you cards and dropping them off with the secretary on your way out doesn't hurt either. It shows that you are appreciative of their time and willingness to interview you. Remember, there were hundreds of other candidates that DIDN'T get an interview.




If you have any tips on rocking the interview for a teaching position, please feel free to leave them in the comments below! The third blog post in this series will be all about Changing positions or schools! Be sure to check out the first blog post in the series, Landing an Interview!

Happy summer friends!

Follow me on Facebook, TpT, Instagram, or Pinterest for all things Teaching!!




Hello good friends!! Hopefully you have started your summer break, I haven't, but I only have one more week! With summer, comes many teachers retiring, taking leaves of absence, moving schools, or leaving the teaching profession. This means schools are looking for teachers to hire!! Maybe you are fresh outta college, or a few years out of college putting your time in with substituting (thank you for this by the way, we all need good subs), or maybe you are relocating, or just looking for a fresh start! Whatever your situation may be, I am writing a 3 part blog series about Jobs in Teaching!

Ok, let me start by saying, I am no NO expert! I am a first grade teacher, just finishing up her 3rd year in Maryland. However, I do have some insight into the teacher hiring process! Before going back to school to be a teacher, I worked in the Human Resources department for my county's public school system. I witnessed first hand the type of educators that got hired, as well as the ones that were looked over. I worked in that position for 5 years, and loved every minute of it. BUT, I always wanted to be a teacher, so with the support of my family and co-workers I was able to go to school full-time while working to make that dream a reality!

So, let's get to the good stuff! This blog post is all about landing an interview. Some schools/districts/counties have hundreds or even thousands of educators applying to them. So here are some tips to help with standing out and landing an interview.

Make sure you have turned in/uploaded/sent in everything that is required for your application to be complete. Some school system will not even send your name out if you haven't completed all the necessary steps. 

For example, the county I work in, you have to have a complete online application (which is many pages that many people fail to complete all the pages). You also have to send in your educational documentation (such as official transcripts, praxis test scores, teaching certifications). You also have to have 3 references fill out an online survey about you.



Choose wisely when choosing your references. Make sure you are choosing someone who respects you and who has seen you teach! Some good ideas to ask to be your references may be professors, cooperating(host) teachers, administrators that have seen you teach.

The reason this was a MUST-HAVE on my list was because I've seen great educators get references from poorly chosen people. Having a reference say, "He's a nice person, but I've never seen him teach" will not help you get an interview.





Put in your time. Substitute. Volunteer. Mention while you are subbing or volunteering that you are looking for a teaching position. You never know the connections you could make. Don't wait! Get your name on the substitute list while in college. This way, you are able to build those relationships, and principals are able to come and watch you grow as an educator. Obviously you won't be able to sub that much if you are in college, but working during breaks or whenever you come home from school really helps to build your reputation and your relationships within schools



Use your connections. A job came available in a school you frequently substitute in, e-mail the administration to remind them of your interest in their school. There is a fine line here though. Don't harass or look incredible desperate. Showing up every other day to remind them you are ready to work may seem like a persistent attitude, but it can also come off as annoying and naive. 

Luckily, when I was finishing with my degree, my old boss (who I worked with in Human Resources) now was a principal. I e-mailed her in April, she came and watched me teach in my student teaching placement and I got hired in May! Our school also had another opening, and I mentioned to my principal about a fellow educator I had graduated with, and she got hired for the 2nd grade position. Sometimes it's all about connections.


If you have any tips on landing an interview for a teaching position, please feel free to leave them in the comments below! The second blog post in this series is all about Rocking that Interview! Check it out here!

Happy summer friends!

Follow me on Facebook, TpT, Instagram, or Pinterest for all things Teaching!!
Hey Friends :) As the end of another school year is glaring me in the face, I can't help but feel a roller coaster of emotions. I've seen so many posts and memes about the last day of school, which are so cute and funny, but I can't help feeling sad.

I know you all can relate. Seriously, we have THE.SINGLE.MOST.IMPORTANT.JOBS.EVER.PERIOD.
And anyone that wants to argue with me, please, come spend a day, a week, a marking period, a school year with me and you will see! Some days I think UGHHHH this school year is going soooo slow. And this time of year, I think OMGeeee I only have 30 days left, how in the world am I gonna get these kiddos to where they need to be by the end of the year.

Let me give you a little information about me, for those that don't know-- I teach 1st grade literacy (reading/writing/phonics) to 2 groups of kids. Our kiddos (throughout the entire school (K-5) are flexibly grouped by abilities). SO I teach the lower level first graders. My morning group has 11 students and are all reading on a kindergarten level, on a F&P scale these range from non-readers to level E. 

As it would occur, these students in my homeroom are not the easiest students. Many come from less than fortunate situations, and at times it seems like the world is against them. I've seen gains this year with them, but BELIEVE ME the beginning of the year was a struggle as I felt I was constantly hitting a brick wall with not seeing great progress (as my fellow 1st grade teachers with on level and above level students were seeing). BUT, each of my students have grown (in their own way) and it has been SOOO rewarding. 

However, I can't help but worry about them. With the upcoming summer days, I worry how the lack of routine will affect them. I dream of driving to each of their houses to drop in with lunch, only for their parents to cuss me out or kick me out :) I wonder if their families will remember to feed them or leave them food(my lock key kids). I hope they know I worry. and pray. and pray. and worry. They aren't my own kids, but I love each of them like my own children.
With having 4 children of my own, I've debated about taking a year or two off, spending time and raising my own children. I admire mothers that are stay at home mothers. For me, my career gives me a different kind of fulfillment. I absolutely love being a mother, I am FAR from perfect and definitely not winning a MOM OF THE YEAR award anytime soon, but I feel like I'm a decent mom. BUT, with teaching, I feel like there are unfortunately kids who don't have a loving caretaker. I'm afraid if I take a year or two off, that there will be kids who come through who truly need a teacher like me and I won't be there. My calling is to be a teacher and be there for those kids.

Teaching is the hardest job out there. You just can't turn it off. You just can't put away your worries and fears. Yes, grading papers can wait. Yes lesson plans can wait. But wondering if "Patty" got something to eat today because she was absent, or worrying if "Tommy's" caretaker will pay attention to him tonight, or praying for all of your students well being---that. That can't be turned off. The love and compassion that comes with being a teacher. It's not just about our lessons and materials and standards. It's about those little eyes looking toward us for approval or praise or just a hug. 

Thank you for all you do. Teaching isn't easy, and you are a rockstar.
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