First Day!

I couldn't have had a better first day back at school! I was so nervous about having such a large class size and I realized it really is the kids who make your class, not the numbers! I have the sweetest, most helpful group of kids this year! I also feel so lucky that I've had about 15 parents offer their help in the classroom! I don't think this has ever happened before! I am beyond grateful but I also want to make sure I use them in the most effective way! Also, who wouldn't be happy with a group of sweet kids who bring you flowers? Made my day!

It's so nice to start the year with such a positive feeling about my kids! I hope everyone else has a wonderful first day back!


Freebie Friday-Book Club Conversation Starters

I'm linking up with Blog Hoppin' for the last day of Teacher Week...Freebie Friday.
I'm giving away the student bookmarks that I use during my student book clubs. This is a good freebie for grades 3-5! I implement book clubs in my classroom as a way to get students excited about what they are reading. They meet with their book club once a week and set goals for how much they will read. I even let them vote on their next book and they get so excited! At the beginning of the year, I facilitate my student book clubs or use parent volunteers. These bookmarks act as a "cheat sheet" for students who struggle with what to talk about when their book club meets. Students can refer to the conversation starters on the bookmark throughout their meeting to prompt them on what to discuss! I suggest printing these on either white or colored cardstock. You can even laminate them so they last all year. By the end of the year, the book clubs are meeting independently without teacher help and have wonderful book club conversations! CLICK HERE TO GRAB YOUR FREEBIE!

I've also recently uploaded a packet with a list of 21 of my favorite mentor texts that I use during Reader's and Writer's Workshop to work on many skills and strategies. I've included book titles, authors, and which strategies and skills I use each book for. The majority of these titles are great for all grades 1-5. The upper grades really enjoy starting a mini-lesson with a read aloud picture book on the carpet. They are so much more engaged in the lesson and are able to make the connection easily! I've just uploaded it to my store for $1.50 if you'd like to check it out. CLICK HERE FOR MY MENTOR TEXT LIST

Happy Friday everyone!!!


Therapeutic Thursday

Today I'm linking up with Blog Hoppin' for Therapeutic Thursday!
There are many things I enjoy doing to de-stress from those long, rough days. Of course, the beach is at the top of my list. When it isn't summer, just a simple walk on the strand does wonders! For those frustrated days, the gym is a must for me!

As for the more often exhausted, so tired I can't even walk days, here are three of my favorite things...

My jacuzzi tub.....

My Scentsy warmer (it can really transform a room and give it that "spa" smell).

And finally, my Kindle

In fact, using all three at the same time is my idea of a perfect night!


Goodbye Summer

As my summer comes to an end in the next three days, I finally decided to join the blog world! I probably should've done this sooner, but I just found out that I have 35 kids in my class this year! That's right, 35 fourth graders! I'm hoping to get some ideas from all of you fabulous teachers out there in blog land on how to manage, plan for, and teach all of these kiddos in the most organized way possible!

A little about me... I've been teaching in California for six years now, the last four years in fourth grade. I don't usually have such large class sizes, but of course with budget cuts, it's happening. I'll just get to enjoy about seven extra lovable students this year and a little less walking space! Most of the time I consider myself a perfectionist so I'm often creating my own units, worksheets, rubrics, and organizing tools, and of course, I love to share!

Throughout the last six years of my teaching career, I've created so many resources, especially in the area of Reader's and Writer's Workshop. Our school uses this approach and as I'm sure many of you have found, it doesn't come with a "ready to go" curriculum, at least not the program our school is using. Therefore, over the years I've created a lot! I'm in the process of uploading many of these to TPT so others can take advantage of the blood, sweat, and tears I've put into these! Please check back for more in the days and weeks to come, since the process of uploading is time consuming! I promise, it'll all be up there soon! For now, I've started with some rubrics...enjoy this freebie rubric for a fiction writing unit! Check out my store and download it for free HERE. I've also included a few rubrics for other units priced at $1.00.

Hopefully one of you wonderful teachers out there will stumble across my blog! If so, I'd love to hear your best tips on managing a HUGE class! Thanks for stopping by!