Monday, September 1, 2014

September Currently

Hey there, everyone! I feel like I've been a leaf swept away in the wind. "Teacher Summer" has ended and we've been in school for 3 weeks already! 3 WEEKS, like a month practically. Luckily, even though I feel tossed around a bit, I have the stability of reading so many of your CURRENTLY posts, I thought, "Why not give it a whirl, Allison?" 

So here I am linking up with the five star creator, Farley from Oh Boy Fourth Grade, for the September Currently. First.Time.Ever. (Evvvaa). 

LISTENING: I am a windows open kind of girl. Especially, the crisp fall air. I also love birds and rain showers, so this morning is a blend of all three! Which reminds me, I also need to blend some coffee and hear that brewing next. 

LOVING: Signs that fall is coming! I love everything about the season! ---There is an annual festival in the town next to mine that I have have frequented my whole life. Like baby in a stroller wearing a bonnet. Haha. (Thanks parents who took pictures to prove it. Sentimental is the way I live, so I visited the festival yesterday. Even though the crowds were immense, craft booths were filled, and people were cutting so much in line it would make my 2nd graders cry...I still loved it. Especially the food!!

THINKING: This is my very first Currently. I can remember before I tried my typing fingers at blogging, I would read countless Currently posts wishing I could make one somehow. I am filled with excitement that I am linking up with so many of you to share! 

WANTING: This year I have been blessed with a planning partner in the 2nd grade hallway. She taught school when I went there, but hasn't taught 2nd for some time. So twice a week we stay late and plan the next week. (We joke that if we are wearing the same clothes the next day, our colleagues can infer where we slept.) This time and her company have been a God send. I still take work home nightly; however, the weekends are not as consumed as last year.
What a typical planning night looks like.

NEEDING: This whole summer, I worked on refocusing my life. I knew if I "trained" during the summer, these practices and mind-sets would be easier to have during the school year. Recently many of my devotions and readings have been about being at peace within yourself, giving generously, and being thankful in everything. Thus, why I pray whole-heartedly to keep taking steps to outlive my life.

1. In high school, I took Spanish thinking I would use it more than French. Guess where I went in high school? Yeah, Paris. The teacher who taught French is very dear to me, so I would love to learn from her and revisit the captivating city. 
2. My IG friends have been such a blessing to me, that I just want to drive or fly to where they are and hang out for a day or two. With many blogger-meet-ups happening, I am so tempted to just hop in the car Friday and be back to teach Monday.
3. I didn't really get to go on a vacation this summer which is all right, but if I could have, I would have gone to TN or the Carolinas, PA or CO, anywhere with the smell of pine trees, the look out of mountains, and the comfort of a cabin.

CURRENTLY: I am thankful that you took a moment to step into my life. Thank you.


Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Wordless Wednesday--July 2nd-

Happy Wednesday! This is the first time I've linked up for Wordless Wednesday hosted by Sugar and Spice 
Love the concept and having a brief insight into your world. 


This whole stripe wearing thing has been a recent development for me. I wasn't really a fan of the repetitive print...well, now keep being drawn to this clothing pattern. Always on the hunt for it in the rows of clothing racks. 

So my question to all you fashionable teachers (I know you are. Your IG posts don't lie.), what pattern or clothing style calls to you when you shop? Or should I say when you find the time to shop.

Monday, June 2, 2014

The Teaching Tribune Summer Bloggin' Party- Monday Meet Up

The Teaching Tribune is at it again to bring all of us teacher bloggers closer together. Meeting you all has been a blessing to me. I credit having such a student oriented and creative year to those of you whom I have met through blogging and IG, especially this lovely teacher, Alisha! There is certainly a spark in her that makes her stand out in our blogging and TPT world! Blogging bestie, this one is for you! 

Check out her blog here! 

I would just love to meet her in real life one day! No doubt, we'd laugh the day away!


I teamed up with two favs for this Monday Meet Up. I am posting about Alisha, Alisha is posting about Amna, and Amna posted about me! Amna and I met through a giveaway on her Facebook page! I was so thankful for her product that I wanted to make sure she knew how beneficial it was. We haven't stopped talking since. I promise when you check out her blog and TPT, you'll see why.

Thank you for visiting me! Be sure to stop by Alisha and Amna's blog too! They are just a click away! 

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Five for Fri..Saturday: May 24

End of the year can make you feel like you are standing on your head! So why not link up with Doodle Bugs Teaching on a Saturday? This was our last FULL week of school! And thanks to Memorial Day, our last Monday! 

Six more days...crazy as it may be, I still won't tell my 2nd graders how many more days I have left with them. They have figured it out though. Why must I teach math! :) 

Anyway, here's what's been going on! (Most pics from Instagram)

This year I am going to stay ahead of the "last minute" syndrome! I went out 2 weeks, 2 weeks (believe it), early and collected most of the items I needed for the end of the year. I posted the first picture on my Instagram and the response was priceless. So thankful we are in this together, my teacher friends!

And an hour later with a few dollars left to my name - this is what I came out with-
I read through every book! My kids will gobble them up since we have been fact detectives for most of the year. And the pencils, I had to hold back buying a pack for myself.

Compiling the books I purchased from Jason's Online Classroom! This is my writing plan for the next six days! 

I love mail. Letters. Online Orders. And Jamberry of course!!! (Not, bills. I don't like bills.) So here's a little sequencing for you.

First these came.

Then this happened.

Which led to this.

My lovely Jamberry Girl, Ashley Marquez, has been working with me to host a Jamberry Online Party! She has been phenomenal! Not only have I loved working with her, but when I talk to my friends offline, they have said how warm and inviting she is! This girl has a heart for people and for Jamberry. The little things in life. Check her out please! You won't be sorry! 

Anyone else's students take the NWEA test? We do three times a year as an adaptive tool to measure growth and achievement! I am so proud of how my students performed! They were focused and motivated. I was in awe really. I know so much of testing is also a mental game which is why I find More Time 2 Teach's top secret motivation cards life changing. (Blog post to follow because I love them so and truly believe in her product.)

Each family dolled up the cards with encouraging words and drawing, then sent them back to school. Just before every test as the students set anxiously at their computer screens, I passed out these card. Their reaction = no words to describe. Just imagine. 

We also wrote two "I cans" every morning and posted them to our chart! These kids responses were so thoughtful! How far they have come. We did one for math as well (in future post). I would have the students read one of theirs in front of the class. Then I would respond with a form of, "You sure can!" Then they stuck it to the paper. They had to share their other one with two partners and then with me as they walked into breakfast! Positive self talk- I believe in it! 

Just a little more proof why I am wanting to hold onto this class for as long as I can. For the 3 days of inside recess last week, I walked in to find my kids hiding. 
(I love hearing the, "She's coming...shhh...(student's name)..shh..she's coming!) 
When I turn on the lights, they jump out and yell, "Surprise!" while holding their signs. 
They have my heart. And they are mine. 

Lastly, due to inventory this week, we didn't have library as a special. So we did something we all love! The picture says it all. 

Wishing you all the best of weekends! Thanks for stopping by! This newbie sure appreciates it!
For those of you on summer vacation---take it all in- I have no doubt you deserve it! 

Friday, May 9, 2014

Five for Friday May 9

Happy Friday everyone! I keep reading how this is some teachers' last week while others have a bit longer before summer arrives. To be honest, I have having a difficult time counting down with this group. I cringe when I tell them we have less than 3 weeks left. And what makes it worse is...most of them cringe, too. 

"What?" "No way!" "We are going to be 3rd graders?"  "When did that happen?"
"Can you move to 3rd?"

The thought of teaching procedures to another class next year is rather daunting right'll stop talking about it and get to the real reason I am here! To link up with all of you wonderful teachers out there! 

Well, I know I haven't posted since last Friday, but I feel like this week was so random that what better thing to do than to share by linking up with Doodlebugs Teaching for Five for Friday!

To go along with my theme of the potential of an having an adjustment disorder, 
(just so you know, my first degree is in psychology) 
(sounds like a future blog post) (get back on track, Allison.) 
my students have the most considerate hearts and they express them through such loving words which leaves this teacher speechless and teary eyed. 

"You should know because you don't just teach us, you bless us."

"I love the way you help me. You never give up. You always achieve your goals."

And you know it, these sweet reminders always come on a day when you feel like you just didn't reach them. Blessed beyond belief.

Let me just say how much I love Teacher's Pay Teachers! I do, I do, I do-oo! Since I am not a seller, I feel like my role is to purchase and use the products you all pour yourselves into and then make sure you know just how much you make a difference through your talents! I am always amazed by those who host giveaways and sales! 

Not to mention, TPT is one of the most genuine marketplaces. We all lived through the system overload that they experienced (which says something about their clientele). Here were the two things I loved about the response. 

1. Teachers did not react negatively. The site wasn't bashed. We all focused on how we waited until the last minute or how we really wanted it to be up and running. What a breath of fresh air! Way to go, us!

2. The website extended their sale and constantly thanked us for our patience. What a community! It feels like we are all understood and treated as people. I just love it. 

Here are some of the items that this teacher checked out!

My goal is to blog about how I use most of these purchases, if not all. 

I don't have a picture for this one due to respecting wishes, but I just have to share that I am an only child adopted aunt! A dear friend, who I grew up with and consider my sister, had her son this week. My phone was on all school day long to hear the news! She also teaches at the school so the news caught like wildfire. You are just going to have to believe me that he is adorable! 

Mother's Day crafting was definitely underway this week! I found the cutest card making set from Sunnydaysinsecondgrade! For future reference you can find her eye-catching and heartfelt card here: Mother's Day Craftivity Card

I've been wordy tonight, whew! Hope the is okay because I simply could not close out the night without a shout out to two lovely and supportive women who have come to be my blogging/IG besties. I was overcome when they told me to check out their blogs after posting their Currently by Farley at Ohboy3rdgrade. Their kind words and encouraging affirmations mean the world to a newbie out in the blogging world. Better off with them. Please take the time to check out their blogs. You will not be sorry! 

So once again, happy Friday to all you life changers! Do something this weekend that will make you love your future self!


Friday, May 2, 2014

First Five for Friday!

Friday is finally here! I am linking up for the first time with Doodle Bugs Teaching for Five for Friday. Pretty excited about it over here!  I've always enjoyed reading all of my lovely teacher blogging friends' posts. So let's give it a go! 

We finished up our unit on the water cycle by making a diagram of and writing about what we
learned. When I pulled out the finger paint, you would have thought it was Christmas morning! Love how the blending of these two wonderful units turned out! Blog post soon to follow

Weather Palooza by Teach Two Reach

                          Busy Teacher's Best Friend- April by Queen of the First Grade Jungle

We went to a local arboretum for our  last field trip of the year. Our class  has been knee deep in learning about soil for the past two weeks as well, so my kids were pretty well equipped with background knowledge. It was fulfilling to hear them talk to the tour guide about compost, soil, and the water cycle. The tour guide even had them sing the water cycle song a couple times. It was an enjoyable day with a little rain, lots of love, and one tired teacher.

At the elementary school in the morning and at the high school for musical practice at night. It has been a full 5 weeks. I've been moonlighting as the choreographer for Guys and Dolls! I just love working with the high schoolers. With the show opening tomorrow night, it is another one of those times when you have to let go and know you taught them the best you could. 
They always deliver!

I was introduced to Jamberry by my dear friends Alisha and Ashley! Needless to say, I have been won over! After this post, I'll be heading over to look at all the different styles. Isn't it wonderful how something so simple can make you feel so good? 

Lastly, I join some amazing teachers for The Pinspired Teacher's Photo a Day Challenge! #PADTeacherChallenge Working to stay as dedicated as possible. It has been such a blessing to connect with so many teachers and share in their classrooms through Instagram.

If you are interested, come follow along! @amartinkus

Happy weekend, friends!