… and I’ve been dying all weekend to show you. Really. I’ve been working on these off and on since I decided on my classroom theme. They’ve gone through a few different iterations, but I’m settled. Finally.
When I chose the Wizard of Oz as my theme, I did so because I felt like I could really use it to my advantage when it comes to classroom management — and starting off the year. I plan to read (an appropriate version of) the book to my kiddos on day one, and do some community-building and foundational activities surrounding it.
So, then, the first thing I have to do is decide what I want my kiddos to focus on. In Room 108, what are the most important things? This was the answer:
I want my students to embody the journey through Oz — I want them to use their hearts, their brains, and their courage each and every day, and I want them to do it together.
While I’m still working on more in-depth “first week” activities, I did fashion-up the anchor charts to go along with these “rules to live by” and vision statements. I’m going to project the color version on my SmartBoard to discuss and write about as a class, and distribute a reproducible version to each table group to complete together prior to our whole-group discussion.
Because I want these “rules to live by” to really stick with my students throughout the year, I also made some bookmarks that they can utilize during Daily 5 or at home, and plan on making sticker versions that they can put on their journals or whatever my team ends up utilizing.
If you think you could utilize my Oz-Inspired “Rules to Live By” in your classroom, head on over to my TPT store (or click the preview below) — it’s on sale for $2.50 until I remember to put it back to non-sale price sometime on Wednesday!
And don’t forget to enter my giveaway — it ends tonight, a minute after midnight! If you win (remember, FIVE winners!!!), you’ll not only get my Oz-Inspired Binder Set and “Rules to Live By,” but ALL future products in my TPT store! I’m excited to find out who I’ll be e-mailing attachments to until the end of my teaching career (and then some)!
Let me start out by saying I am totally and completely floored by the amount of support and interest that’s been generated since I started out this little old blog. I’ve gotten such positive feedback, and cannot overstate how much useful advice has been dispensed to me (FOR FREE! Y’all know I love free!).
Part of that support has come in the support of these three awards:
From: Teresa @ Fun Games 4 Learning, Antonia @ Forkin Fourth, Julie @ Math is Elementary, Rachelle @ Teacher on the Loose, Mrs. Rios @ Mrs. Rios Teaches Second Grade, and Storie @ Stories by Storie. Thank you so much, ladies!!!
The rules are pretty much the same for all of them, but the Versatile Blogger Award requires that I give y’all 7 random facts about myself. So, without further delay:
- My husband and I both completed the same five-year Bachelor/Master program… together. Yep, we even sat next to each other during our graduation ceremony (talk about emotional) and took our official picture together!
- I’m gluten intolerant… which can be a real bummer sometimes! I’m trying to gauge how to deal with this in my own classroom — as far as treats for my kiddos — so we’ll see how it goes. Any fellow gluten-free teachers?
- I’m a terrible dancer but I love to dance. It’s really the best, and something I came to love when it was the only thing that would calm my fussy baby-turned-toddler down.
- I can trace my roots on my mother’s side back to the Mayflower, and on my father’s side back to Mary Queen of Scots. Pretty awesome, if I do say so myself.
- I’m mildly obsessed with fonts. And by mildly, I mean I can pretty much identify any font by name in under 30 seconds. (Just ask Ginger!)
- I’m probably the only elementary teacher that’s not a fan of Skippyjon Jones. At all. (I’m ducking all the rotten tomatoes right now!)
- Shopping for school supplies and organizing things is my version of zen. Big-time.
SO — Instead of nominating individual blogs myself, I’d like to have everyone leave a comment linking back to your blog! I love finding new blogs, and I know others do too — so this is a perfect way to put yourself out there and to also find some new bloggers to follow!
I also wanted to share one piece of decor I finished for the classroom today:
This will hang in my classroom during the first week of school (and then outside our door after that). I am so excited to have it finished — it was actually super easy to do!
I know an Oz-themed room is pretty out-of-the-norm, but I know that many teachers utilize it as a book study, or party-theme, etc., and so I’m offering the pennant in my TPT store (in three sizes; the size I chose is the 7.5″ size) for FREE! So head on over and pick it up!
And just another reminder — if you haven’t already — my giveaway closes at 12:01 a.m. on Tuesday! Make sure you are entered!
Well, no one (as of 11:18pm) guessed my favorite Oz character correctly! I’m not totally surprised, because it’s an unusual preference. So let me explain —
I’m a sap. A total sap.
I tear up at the national anthem, I tear up looking at museum displays at the Smithsonian, I get choked up without fail at every single Olympic event.
I. am. a. sap.
Because of this, I remember connecting so much with the Tinman’s character when I was little. I felt everything in the world so strongly that it absolutely destroyed me to think that there could be someone that couldn’t feel at all.
The Wizard says to the Tinman, “As for you, my galvanized friend, you want a heart. You don’t know how lucky you are not to have one. Hearts will never be practical until they can be made unbreakable.” The Tinman replies, “But I still want one.“
Tears. Here they come.
Having a heart means that you feel joy and you feel sorrow. You feel.
I’ll never forget the “warning” I received about becoming a teacher — that my heart may be broken on a regular basis, and why would I want to do something like that?
I totally understand the Tinman. I relate to him.
There are many disadvantages to choosing teaching as your profession. Those disadvantages often times turn people away. I turn toward them, because teaching makes me feel. My heart is never so open and free as it is when I’m teaching (and learning).
So there you have it. I have an unusually soft soft-spot for our galvanized friend.
I’m still choosing a winner, and going with the person that guessed my second favorite Oz character — the Cowardly Lion — Storie! You are right, his “aw, shucks!” quality is what makes me smile anytime he is on-screen. Check your e-mail shortly for your copy of the binder set!
I’ll be back tomorrow with some new classroom decor, and a freebie (or two)! Don’t forget to enter my giveaway!
And shut the front door. The windows, too. Maybe even the garage.
Did I really just list my first product on TPT? Yes, yes I did.
I’ve been feeling a wee bit under the weather in the past day and couldn’t sleep last night. I decided to work on my organizational binders for this upcoming year and put on The Wiz (I know, I know, I’m a walking cliche) and was hit with a ton of inspiration.
One of the things I love most about the Wizard of Oz is how diverse the story is. There are so many lessons you can learn from it, and as a teacher, so many ways you can utilize those lessons in your classroom. So, naturally, I used quotations from the movie and book to round out my binders and they. fit. perfectly.
I have yet to print + laminate (that’ll be a part of my Monday Made It since I just got my ink refilled at Costco — who knew? — and got a new laminator), so I can’t show you the binders in action… yet. I can, however, share with you my one of favorite covers (it’s hard to choose).
Raise your hand if you think I’m going to use this as a management technique. All hands raised? Great! You’re totally right. I might even play “Ease on Down the Road” to transition out of morning meeting. Who knows! Anything can happen in Oz, er, my classroom!
To celebrate my first paid item in my TPT store, the pack of binder covers + spine labels is on sale for $2.50 until tomorrow at midnight! Head on over and check them out!
Don’t forget to enter my giveaway to win all (now) current and future items in my TPT store! There will be five winners so spread the word!
I’m in a super-de-duper mood to night because I think we might’ve turned a potty-training corner (you have no idea how relieved I am!), the first person to correctly guess my favorite character from the original movie will get a copy of the binder set! Be sure and leave your e-mail!
I’m excited about today’s Monday Made It, because it’s something I saw on Pinterest and then had no choice but to complete after finding the perfect materials on my Michaels trip.
Moment of silence y’all, for Dorothy-gingham plates — 12 for $1. Perfect for my bulletin board headers (no purchasing of expensive letters!) and my word wall.
I thought that was going to be my only Monday Made It… but then I found these in the Target Dollar Spot:
What is it? A stress-reliever. And so this was born:
I’ve used stress-relievers before in the classroom to give kiddos a little brain-break and some tactile input, but these were begging to be used as a focal point for kiddos that are stuck.
So I created a little packet with a projectable anchor chart, a reproducible anchor chart, the labels, and some guidance on how I utilize stress-relievers in the classroom and plan on using these. You can find it by clicking on the cover below (it’ll take you to it on TPT)!
I would love to know what you’ve utilized in your classroom to get students “unstuck” and on the path to a lightbulb moment — share in the comments!
So there you have it, my Monday Made Its! I’ll be back later today or tomorrow to share a few things I’ve been working on for my classroom, as well as my plan to tackle creating my language arts curriculum for the first few weeks.
Update: Head on over to this post to see what I added to my “encouraging lightbulb moments” packet and re-download it at my TPT store!