27 September 2013

Five for Friday

Here is a little peek into my world/thoughts for 5 randomness things on this TGIF!!!!!

I sure that all teachers of small children can relate to this - right????

Ok, I know it is not officially October yet, but I get so excited because Halloween runs a close race to Christmas as being one of my favorite holidays.   There are so many cute ideas floating around for Halloween.  One of my friends posted this on Facebook, and I think it so cute {and looks yummy too}!!!

While I am on a little Halloween kick ...  I finally finished this little product.  So proud of it.  Turned out really cute and filled with fun activities here is a little peek of just a few of the things included {5 hands on Literacy centers and 2 writing prompts}!!!

Anyone who knows me well, knows how much I love Social Studies and Science.  This week we squeezed in a little landforms {sorry about the blurred image - someone needs to work on the camera focusing skills}!!!

We also played a game that covered skip counting and repeated addition.  Oh, how excited they get when they realized repeated addition is  basically multiplication.

Well, that about sums up my Five for Friday!   Thanks for stopping by and taking a peek!  I can't wait to see what you week had in store for you!  I {heart} comments and followers!!


25 September 2013

Student Reflection Sheet Freebie

Before I get to the student reflection/self assessment.  I wanted to let all my sweet followers know that I finally finished a packet that I have been working so hard on.  It is a set of 5 Halloween Themed Literacy Centers.   It turned out so much better than I ever could have expected and I can't wait to use it in my small group setting.  There are 5 different activities that can be used either as and individual lesson or small group lesson.  Inside the set there is several games to play.  Up first is Spooky ABC Sort.  Next, is Going Batty for Contractions.  Third is Frankie's Fact or Opinion.  Fourth is Dracula's Noun or Adjective Sort.  Last, is A Pumpkin Patch of Synonyms/Antonyms.   I have also included 2 Halloween themed writing prompts.   Be sure to check out.  I don't think you will be disappointed.  Below is a picture of a few things that are included!


Now on to student self reflection!!!  I posted the other day about the standards on which a teacher is evaluated in Louisiana.  To read the post click here.   Well today I am going to share with you one of the things I am doing this year that is new.

One component {a big component} that a teacher gets evaluated on is whether or not a student is actively engaging in their own self assessment.  Now I know that we all do this on some sort of level whether you realize it or not.  But with all the new evaluations we now have to show proof.  

One way I came up with to allow the student to make self assessments  was to send a reflection sheet home with signed papers.  Before when I would send sign papers home I would attach a small note that asked parent to go over their child's papers and to sign and return.   Now when I send sign papers home weekly I have not only the parent to sign, but the child as well.  Then I have two small sections at the bottom for the child to make self assessments or reflections.  They have to list one thing they did really well on and one thing they can improve on.  

This has actually worked out better than I thought.   At first I was thinking one more thing to do, but I have really seen some great responses {and a few funny ones too - check the picture out at the bottom}!!!

If you would like you may visit my TpT shop and download the reflection/self assessment sheet for free.  You can use it as is or take it and use it as a guide to make your own reflection sheet up.   

I plan to put up another self assessment method that a friend of my is using in her class.  So stay tuned for another freebie!!!

This is the funny response I mentioned earlier.  I even put this in my Five for Friday post.  Every time I read it I smile.  I love when they are confident, and BAM I will leave you with that note!!!

As always thanks for stopping by and taking a peek!!  I can't wait to hear your comments {I heart comments and followers}!!!!


21 September 2013

Teacher Evaluations

Well it is almost time for me to be evaluated.  My principal sent out an email asking if anyone wanted to volunteer to go first.  Of course, I did not.  I don't like going first {I guess that is my nervous nature.  With all the new changes we have had I am just not ready yet.  But I know that I am only putting off the inevitable.  If you have been following along with me then you know Louisiana has had major changes statewide.  We adopted Common Core this year, we have new standards on how a teacher will be evaluated, and my parish adopted new reading and math series this year.  Whew, it is a lot to keep up with.   

Last year was the first year that Louisiana teachers went through Compass {Compass is what teacher evaluations are called}.  Well I guess the first one was not enough, so now they sent a new updated version of what a teacher should be evaluated on {several new things added nothing really taken off}.   I am all for evaluation, but some of it is a little overboard to me.  In order to be a good teacher you have to score a 3 or 4 on your evaluation.  To obtain a 4 is extremely hard because there are so many hoops you have to jump through to get it.   Last year I did obtain a 4 {it was very stressful and hard to do}, but I am not so sure I will this year.  Not because I am any less of a teacher, but because they went in a changed up several of the requirements to gain a 4.  It will be REALLY, REALLY hard to do.   Last year was extremely hard and stressful with all the new teacher evaluation.  Now with all the new changes again, let's just say it is exhausting keeping up with it.  I feel for the principals too.  I have heard numerous principals say that is hard judging a teacher on all of these things at one time. 

The evaluation is broken down into 6 different categories and you are scored on each one.  Then a grand total is calculated to give you your score.  But wait there is more ...  the evaluation only counts as a percent.  Then the state then takes your SLT {Student Learning Targets} {another post for another day on SLT} and combines it together to get final total.   SLT's come from the students testing scores or other formal assessments.  I have put some pictures on here to show you all that is required to get a score.  They have it broken down so you can see what exactly earns a 1, what exactly earns a 2, what exactly it takes to earn a 3 or 4.  Sorry the images are so small, I tried to make them as big as I could.  To view the website click here.  You may have to zoom in.  Notice on the first image they all but say in so many words that getting a 4 will be next to impossible {exact wording:  there will relatively few ratings at this level}.  To me that wording sounds a little discouraging, because I believe all teachers should aim to do their best not be told it is next to impossible.

So I will do my evaluation again this year and I know I will do good.  Whether or not I get 4 or a 3, I know that I am a good teacher.  I also know that all the ladies I work with are just as good too!!!  I hate that we have to jump through hoops to prove it!!!  Don't get me wrong I think we should be evaluated, but I don't think it should be such a long drawn out stressful experience.

What type of evaluation do you have to do in your state or county??  I am just curious if yours looks like this.  I can't wait to hear your comments {I heart comments and followers}.  I am always interested in how others are doing it!!!  As always thanks for stopping by and taking a peek!  


P.S.  Just a reminder that all my digital papers are on sale in my TpT shop.  I am also working on an awesome Halloween activity set.  I hope to have it out in a few days.  Stay tune for more information.  I think you are going to love it!!

20 September 2013

Five for Friday

I love Fridays and Saturdays because sometimes it is the only chance I get to link up.  Below is my Five for Friday!!!!

I finally joined in the ranks of all my fellow blogger buddies, I caught the crud.   By Thursday I was in the doctors office with fever and a bacterial infection.  To be honest I am surprised I held out this long.  Usually within the first two weeks of school I have caught something.  After two shots and a round of antibiotics I was feeling much better.

A friend of my posted this on her Facebook page.  Raise your hand if this has ever been you!!!!!

I had to put this up because every time I look at it I smile.  When I send graded papers home, I attach a form where the parents and student signs.  The student then assesses their own work and writes in their comments.  This is what one my cuties wrote for her assessment of her work.   I agree with her too, there's nothing wrong with a little confidence.   And again I am reminded why I love second graders.

I just wrote a post about PLC meetings.  To read it click here!!!   At my school we have weekly PLC meetings were we discuss data and other topics that need discussing.  To get a blank copy of my PLC agenda just click on the picture.  Feel free to take it and make it your own!!!

How do you keep your student's cleaned up and organized?  Every Friday we have what I call, "Tidy Friday"!  Now don't laugh to hard, but with a little southern drawl these two words almost rhyme.   The kids get so excited on Friday when I say in my most excited voice, "TIDY FRIDAY"!!!!!  I have yet to figure out why this excites them.   After they leave to go home, I put one of the cute little notes on their desk for them to see on Monday morning.   I found these on the blog All Students Can Shine.   Valerie has some really cute ideas on her blog.  And these cute little tags were a freebie.  Click on the picture to be taken to the link.

Well that about sums it up for my Five for Friday!!!!  As always thanks for taking a peek!!  I would love to hear from you {I heart comments and followers}!!!!!!


19 September 2013

PLC Kinda' Wednesday & A PLC Freebie

PLC kinda' Wednesday coming to you on a Thursday!!  Does your school or team have weekly or frequently PLC meeting?   My school started PLC meetings last year.  What you might ask is a PLC exactly?   Well, PLC stand for Professional Learning Community.   At my school we have a block set aside just for grade levels to meet and have a PLC meeting.  We have a PLC meeting every Wednesday.   Most of the meeting is meant to discuss data on different students.   With all of the data we collect the discussions you could have are endless.  For example this past week we talked and compared our class DIBEL scores and we looked at our grade level overall score.   Each week when we have a PLC meeting we are expected to produce an agenda.  This a premade form that my second grade team came up with.  It list a variety of topics that we talk about on a regular basis.   The agenda then has to be turned in to my principal.  We still have to produce an agenda even if the principal or other administrators sit in on our PLC {which does happen frequently}.  Below is a copy of the agenda we have to turn in.   We also keep a copy for us {we all know how papers can sometime magically disappear}!!!

Sometimes it feels like we are repeating the same stuff each week.  However, I do find PLC's beneficial.    We can learn a lot about a child by studying data.   I know that a lot of the surrounding schools in our areas have PLC's, but they only meet every other week.   Does your school have PLC meetings and if so how often?   What are some topics that you discuss?   

Click on the form below to download a free blank copy of our Agenda.  Feel free to use it at your next PLC meeting or take it and change it up to fit your needs.   

I would love to hear your comments about PLC's and share any information that you think you be beneficial.  As always thanks for stopping by!!  I can't wait to hear from you.

16 September 2013

Back to School Night

It is official - school is in full swing.   Tonight my school is having Back to School Night.   We have Meet the Teacher Night before school starts, then always about a month in we have Back to School Night.   I think I am already to go.   I have typed up my letter and have all my information stapled together.  I have treats on the desk for parents.  It is a really cute poem tied to a bag with yummy cookies.  When the parents arrive I will have my powerpoint ready to go.  I use this to help me remember to talk about all the important points I want to make.   It really helps me because I get so nervous speaking in front of a room full of adult.  Isn't it funny how we can speak all day in front of a class full of kids, but as soon as a room fills up with adults we get nervous?  The pictures below show the slides I will be using in my powerpoint.   I hope everything goes well.  I am off to freshen up my makeup and get ready to greet my parents.

This is the poem that is attached to the bag of cookies.  I tie it on with cute ribbon that matches my room of course!!!
These are the slides I will use tonight that will help me get through my Back to School Night "speech"!!!


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