Saturday, January 5, 2013

Happy New Year

Happy New Year!!  I hope you had a wonderful time off with your family and friends over Christmas break, I know I sure did!  I look forward to school breaks because I get to see my family who live out of state.  Normally, I fly home to see them, but for Christmas, they get to come to warm, sunny Florida and stay with me!

We started back at work on Thursday, which was a normal teacher work day.  Nothing too exciting, just getting back in the swing of things.  Friday was the exciting day!  My school had a "Just Pin It" professional development day!  A few teachers complied best practice ideas in a variety of areas and displayed them in fun and creative ways.  The whole staff then rotated through the 7 different stations and were able to see these ideas in practice in our classrooms.  It was so fun and informative.

The different areas covered were:  Behavior Management, Math, Foldables, Writing, Reading/Vocabulary, Classroom Organization, and Common Core.  I snapped a ton of pictures and collected a bunch of handouts.  I worked with another 4th grade Writing teacher and setup the Writing station.  We had a PowerPoint slide of ideas that were submitted from other teachers in the school and I put together a Pinterest board full of ideas and printed the URL for the staff on business cards.  If you follow me on Pinterest, it's the board titled "Just Pin It - Writing".  Check it out, it's pretty fantastic!  I included ideas for all age groups, my regular "Writing" board is focused mainly on 4th grade.

Before we were released to explore all the best practices being used in the school, we had a presentation from "The Bag Ladies"!  They are truly amazing!  I can not say enough about their creativity and innovation!  I had never heard of them before and am now so excited to fill my classroom with their ideas.  If you don't know who they are, you need to check them out.  We all ordered units from them and I can't wait to get mine and start using it.  Here are a couple of pictures of the project they made with us.  There are so many more ideas that I can't wait to try out!

This is a large flat paper bag with 1 large pocket, 1 medium pocket and 2 small pockets.

Accordion fold book with cardboard covers. 

Cardboard roll book.

And yes, my Christmas tree is still up!  I will likely put my decorations away tomorrow.