Monday, July 1, 2013

Currently... July!

Okay, so where has summer gone? I can't believe it's already July. I need to savor every single day in July because it's my only full month of summer vacation this year. It feels great to say ... VACATION! I'm in need of one, badly!

Now, I must admit, Sunday is usually when I do a lot of my blog work. So, I'm going to have to get it together a little late this week because last night was the Matchbox Twenty and Goo Goo Dolls concert! Rob Thomas looks exactly like he did in 1996. I was impressed! It was an amazing night so needless to say, no blog work was done since I was reliving the 1990's and 2000's.

However, since it is July 1st! Here's a little link up with Farley from Oh' Boy Fourth Grade for July's Currently!

Right now, in my house everyone is still sleeping...even the pups! I'm listening to some music and enjoying the bliss of a nearly noiseless house. Sometimes, you really do need to enjoy the simple things!

Loving my gumball machine! I've been testing it out and if you follow me on pinterest I've been scouting out different erasers to fill it. The only down side is, my very large gumball machine will take quite a large number of erasers to fill it. So I need to get some bang for my buck! I'm hoping to get some vinyl and use the Cricut to create a little 5 cents logo.

I can't wait for July 11th! It really can't come soon enough.... We're finally taking a VACATION! I haven't left the state in over two, maybe even three years. I just need a weekend away from the house, dishes, dogs, etc. We're going to do an extended weekend in Louisville - see some sights like the Bourbon Trail, Louisville Zoo, and Slugger Museum... and eat our way around via Adam Richmond's Guide to Louisville.  Yes, Adam Richmond, the Man vs. Food guy... He knows good food!

I'm most excited about Toast on Market! I love pancakes!... Lemon Souffle pancakes? Yes, please!

Wanting... coffee...nothing new there. I like it sweet and iced. 

Okay, so my craft table/scrapbook table is embarrassing right now. I'm working on some new curriculum stuff over the summer so I had to bring home all my "teacher" books and I have an explosion of crafts, school supplies I've found, plus all my new books. It's really getting out of control fast. It's is going to be a haul to move back into my room! I should probably organize it but I'm not sure where else it can go right now. Ugh... 

Lastly, tips, tricks and hints. I think the best advice I was given was to give students ownership and choice. This is not a novel concept but it really does create a sense of responsibility. I know I'm one that finds it hard to let go but you have to give up a little bit to see all the possibilities and let the kids shine! I'm a fan of book talks and watching book "trailers." I like to make it an event like previews before a movie. I want my students to be excited about reading! This year, all of our book clubs were a huge success when we added what we dubbed our "virtual book pass" where we showed You Tube videos, book talks, and student made videos that explained our book club choices. Finally, the best thing I made this year with the help of the Columbia Reading and Writing Project was my Jot Lot. I made it thinking I'd never really "use" it and I used it ALL THE TIME! It was the perfect spot for my students to post answers to questions/exit tickets as well as leave comments. I was a fan! 

Here's a picture of someone else's from Pinterest... I never took a photo of mine! (I really need to be better about that next year!)

Mine is a poster board marked off by post-it sized squares. Then I numbered each square for my students and that way they could put up a post-it and I could know the student without others knowing... it was great for check-ins and easy! I just gave back post-its or called up small groups if I noticed a problem :) 

Do you have any tips, tricks, or hints that you couldn't live without?


  1. Have a wonderful time on your vacation! I can't wait for mine to start either.

    Apples and Papers

  2. Found you at Farley's Currently! Yay for your vacation! I would love to get out of my state but alas, my husband is in grad. school. So we stay local. But no biggie! We still have fun! I love your Jot Lot- way to get those kiddos interested in reading!
    Mrs. Landry's Land of Learning

  3. Enjoy your vacation. Ours is coming up in a few weeks and can't wait even though we are staying in Ohio. I like your idea of a "Jot Lot" too cute!

  4. I love the idea of a Jot Lot and you had my full attention and support as soon as you mentioned student choice. I am a big supporter of student choice in reading and writing. We don't necessarily need to create good students, we need to create good readers and writers, and choice will help us get them there. :)
    Creating Lifelong Learners

  5. Love Wagon Wheel!! I hope you have fun in Louisville! :)
    I totally agree with giving students choice. I really like the idea of the Jot Lot. Do you think younger kiddos could do this?
    ❀Beth Ann❀
    Taming My Flock of Firsties


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