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Tracking Reading Levels

Happy Friday!
      I hope you all had an amazing week!  We had a three day week due to Presidents' Day and a teacher work day on Tuesday, so my week was awesome :)  In our classroom we chose to update assessments this week and it went so well.  I am so impressed with how far some of our little kindergarten munchkins have come.  I know as teachers we track student progress in a million ways, but I love seeing the different ways that students can track their own progress.  We have a beach scene set up for students to show off their reading levels and to give them a visual of where they need to be by the end of the year.
  I am happy to say that after assessing this week a lot of our kids moved up a reading level, and they just love seeing their names climb up the wall.  How do you showcase your student's reading levels?  I have seen a lot of really cute ideas around our building.  Did you notice the pool?  The kids love sitting back, relaxing and independent reading in there.   I know I love reading in comfy spots and I love creating that same feeling for my students.  We had really cute pool inflatables in there from the dollar store, but they only lasted half of the year haha.  Oh, kindergarten.
  I am off to find a comfy spot to relax and I hope you find many peaceful moments this weekend.

Classroom Management - Time for a refresher!

Happy President's Day!

       I am enjoying my day off and taking some time to reflect back on this past week.  Did anyone else feel like their kids were a bit nutty?  I know the past few weeks have been crazy with the 100th day of school, Valentine's Day, field trips and a full moon on top of that!  Time to crack down and get all of those sillies out.  
       In our classroom (I co-teach with my BFF) we have the coolest behavior bulletin board that we were so proud of during the first half of the school year, it totally rocked!  It is in addition to our regular behavior chart, it is more of an incentive thingy than anything.  Since coming back from winter break we have kinda veered away from it but now it's time to crack down haha.  
Here is the board I am talking about:

Our school has a school wide color change system.  Students start on the color green at the beginning of the day and with each warning/rule broken, they go down a color from green down to blue.  Check out the smiley and frowning faces on the colored pieces of paper.  Unfortunately, once you go down you cannot go back up, so we have other incentives in place to keep kids motivated.  Now, to my two favorite parts of the board.  

On the left you will notice stars with all of the students names on them.  Students stay on the wall as long as their behavior is green, if they break too many classroom rules their name comes off the wall (notice a few missing stars?).  At the end of the week the students who are still on the board get a special treat like stickers, popcorn, treasure box, or even ice cream!  We always base the awesomeness of the reward on how many kids are still up there.  If they stayed on green when a lot of their friends went bananas then they deserve to be rewarded big time.  

I love the other side of the board too.  I saw a similar idea on Pinterest over the summer and thought it was just genius!  You randomly pick a students name to be the "Mystery Student", and if that child is on green at the end of the day, they get rewarded.  You can reward them with treasure box, stickers, an extra job the next day, lunch with the teacher, etc.  Anything you think your students will absolutely love.  The kids love trying to guess who the mystery student might be, and I love reminding them to check their behavior because "you never know if your name is inside the mystery student bag."

This week I am going to focus on making sure I review this board and keep these incentives in place.
What are some motivators that you have in your classroom?  Do your kids respond to incentives or do you have other tactics to maintain a cool, calm and collected classroom?
Have a beautiful week filled with perfectly behaved students!

Football Withdrawal **Freebie!**

Happy Sunday!  I hope you are enjoying a 3 day weekend like me, or if you are super lucky, winter break!  With that being said, Sundays feel so empty lately.  Are you missing football season as much as I am?  Even though my Steelers were a bit off this year (putting it nicely) I still long for those fun and exciting Sunday afternoons.  Well if you need a little more football in your life, this freebie is for you.  My students enjoyed some football themed measuring fun during our math rotations this past month.  They were able to use these football measuring sticks to figure out the height and length of various football themed pictures.  This activity can be adapted for many grade levels by changing it from a non-standard measuring center to standard measurement practice by using rulers.  I hope you enjoy it and it helps tide you over until pre-season begins in 6 months.

                                          ****Click the picture****

Hello Everyone!

I am so happy you have found my little corner of cyber space :)  I look forward to sharing my thoughts, ideas and teaching adventures with all of you.  Education is such a wonderful field and collaboration is one of its many positive attributes.  This blog is where I plan to share and learn with my teacher friends and to continue to grow as an educator.  Chat with you all very soon!