Friday, August 24, 2012

So, I figured out how to get a signature on my blog....took a while, but smart little me figured it out!  :)

Positive Discipline

Wow....I guess I have been busy! I haven't posted in over a month.  Oh yea, SCHOOL STARTED!!! I have a fabulous group of little people this year. They are going to be fun!

Anyhoo...I use an awesome approach in my class called Positive Discipline. ( I know some of you " old school peeps didn't think those two words went together. But they do!) I can not claim any piece of it as " mine" but I bow down to those who literally wrote the book! If you don't know about it, I suggest you take a look. I was introduced to this book/system in college, and haven't put it down since. My classroom wouldn't run without it in fact. Every year, I get compliments from parnts and have had several tell me they have changed how they discipline at home. What a great complimnt! Again, I dont take the credit...I give all of that to the authors. So, Here is the book, AKA my classroom bible.  (it's on Amazon!)

There is a website to take a look at too. Here is the link:

If you are a "newbie" teacher (or a veteran looking for a new classroom management system) I recommend taking a look. Your life as a teacher will be or ever better!!!

Parents: they have a Positive Discipline for home too.....if you are interested in something for "non-school time."

Happy Friday!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

I saw it on Pinterest...

My husband Brent says that my new phrase in life is "I saw something on Pinterest..."  And,  I have to say he is right!  :)  Don't tell him I said that.  It is just one more way for me to organize and be OCD.  Don't tell him I said that either.  :)  If you know me, you know that I am OBSESSED with being organized....almost to a fault.

Anyways, I believe that Pinterest has made me a better teacher.  I have found a TON of wonderful ideas on there!  If you haven't started spending hours on this awesome website, I suggest you should very soon.  You can check out my boards by going here:

My school boards are: Classroom OCD, Language for little people, math for little people, and Science and social studies for little people. 
I am constantly pinning new things, so follow me and watch for new stuff. 

Since it summer, I have been spending even more time on Pinterest getting ideas for this upcoming year....which, by the way, starts in just a few weeks!  Ahh!  I have created a few things for my classroom already.   I got crafty with some canvas!   These are all signs I am going to hang in my classroom and I got the ideas from...PINTEREST!  

I am currently working on a "Where Are You?" board for the door made with a cookie sheet and magnets.  I will post a picture of it when it is done!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Teachers pay teachers

If you haven't ever been to this site, you need to go!  There are tons of FREE items for teachers, made by teachers.  A lot of it costs $$ but it goes back to the teacher who created it.

I have just created a store, if you are interested in any of my products.  Follow me so that you can see new stuff as I add it!


Life Skills and Lifelong Guidlines

My classroom has no rules.  That's right NO RULES.  No, I am not crazy.  We have a class pledge instead.  It is based on the Highly Effective Teaching Model, created by Susan Kovalik.  There are 5 main lifelong guidelines that are the key parts of our class pledge.  (Truthfulness, trustworthiness, active listening, no putdowns and personal best. )  I explain to the kids like this: we should be showing these 5 things EVERY DAY.  We say the class pledge daily and it "replaces" the traditional rules you might have in a classroom.  I got the idea from the school I student taught at.  The whole school followed this model and I loved it so much I just had to use in my own classroom.  I have used it since day one and I don't regret it one bit.  It is a much more positive way of keeping the kids under control.  Anything "offense" that might occur, can fit under one of those 5 guidelines.  Each time a child breaks their class pledge, they move a clip down our chart.  ( I will post information about our chart soon.)

So, the class pledge goes like this:
  I promise to be truthful.
  I promise to be trustworthy.
  I promise to use my active listening.
  I promise to give NO put downs.
  I promise to do my personal best today.

Along with the class pledge, we study 19 life skills. (Caring, common sense, cooperation, courage, curiosity, creativity, effort, flexibility, friendship, initiative, integrity, organization, patience, pride, problem solving, perseverance, resourcefulness, responsibility, sense of humor.).  We start on the first day of school and we learn them one by one.  We talk about real life ways to show these life skills.  Then, as the year goes on, I use these words when managing the class.  They begin to become more familiar with each of them and what each means and how to show it.  These words fuel my classroom discipline, while at the same time help to develop kids with awesome character!

If you would like to start using the lifelong guidelines and life skills in your classroom, you can buy supplies from Books for Educators.  Click the link below to go to their site.  I have the life skills posters and the lifelong guidelines poster.  I usually give the website to my parents too, if they want to order one of the magnets for their fridge.  :)

New direction

When I created this blog, it was just a place for me to "let my thoughts out." But, lately I have been noticing that I really don't use it much.  So, I am going to change the direction of My Life In First Grade.  I am going to make it more of an informational blog.  Showing pictures of my classroom, sharing ideas of new things I am doing in my room (or thinking about doing) and maybe even share some documents and such.

So, "teacher friends" follow my blog and let me know what you think!  

Happy summer!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Soap Box

It is crazy how many of my friends are pregnant.  Seriously, I can think of 10 right now. No joke.  10. (BTW...I am happy for them all!)  So this is to all of my preggo friends.  Please read this post to help your future child be a good kid.  

 I must complain for a minute. It's been a long rough day.  So, let me get up on my soap box and get started.

The following are the most annoying and infuriating things a kid can do to their teacher:

1. Talking back.  What the heck happened to respect?!  When I was younger, I was taught to respect all adults.  No matter who they were...teacher, parent, grandparent, friend's parent etc.  In the past few years, I have noticed that kids talking back has become more and more prominent.  So, Moms:  teach your child to respect adults.  Period.  No exceptions. 

2. Eye rolling.  This kind of goes hand in hand with #1.  Probably the most disrespectful thing that a kid can do in my class.  Again, be respectful.  Sometimes you have to do things you don't like.  Get over it and move on.  Don't you dare roll your eyes at me kid.  If I had done that to my mother, my ass would have been red for a week. 

3.  Interrupting.  If I am talking to another person, please wait until I am finished before you start talking kid.  I can't talk to more than one person at a time.  If I had a dollar for every time I said "Raise your hand please." I would be a millionaire. 

4.  Tapping me repeatedly.  If you want to tell me something, then say my name.  Or raise your hand.  DO NOT tap me over and over and over again.  And...don't pull on my shirt. It is super annoying!

5.  Not following directions. If I ask you to do something (or stop doing something) please follow my directions.  Simple. Easy.  Just do it.  I hate repeating myself.

6. Whining. Enough said.  Just talk normally.

Whew.....that feels better.  Thanks for letting me complain.  I will climb off of my soap box now.  :)

I try my best to be patient with all of these habits, but that is easier said than done!  I know all of my "teacher friends" will totally agree with me. Most days, I do just fine, but today my patience was very thin.  The good news is:  tomorrow is a new day and we get to start over.  One of the best things about my job.  We get a totally clean slate tomorrow. 

In other news....I was voted Teacher of the Year at my school.  I was totally shocked and surprised that my fellow teachers nominated me for this great honor.  I still consider myself a "new kid" when it comes to this teaching thing.  I guess everybody thinks I know what I am doing. Ha!  I wonder if I will ever feel like I know what I am doing?!