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I Moved to Middle School!

Holy hot minute!

It has been a LONG time since I've seen this page, and if it wasn't for social media, y'all would probably think I disappeared!  I'm here!

Where's here?  Well, a year and a half ago, after 11 years of teaching elementary school, I moved to middle school.  Has the move been easy?  No....middle school is a whole new world....with big kids...and attitudes...and hormones...lol.  Do I regret the move?  NOPE!  Not at all.  

This will be my second year teaching ELA to 6th, 7th, and 8th grade.  I have 3 block classes (double periods).  I brought a lot of my elementary background/techniques along with me.  Although I am still trying to get my head above water, I am hoping to share more here about my middle school adventures and some of our activities and lessons.  

Exit Tickets with a TWIST!

One of my goals this school year is to use exit tickets on a more consistent basis.  I decided to introduce exit tickets in a fun and memorable way.  We had a discussion about what exit tickets are and how and why they will be used this year.  We talked about how they will be used after a lesson and focused on one skill BUT, to introduce them, I let students have free choice as to what their exit ticket would be.
Can I be honest with you?  My kiddos have been working so hard with beginning of the school year routines and procedures.  For the most part, they have really done a good job picking up our workshop routines, so I wanted to "reward" that with a fun activity.  So yes, this was kind of last minute, like driving in my car on my way to work last minute.  I was SURE I had playdoh to do this with.  Then I got there and nope, no playdoh, BUT I had a huge pack of Bendy-Stix:)  

I gave each student 4 stix and told them they had to make something they learned this week.  I let them choose any subject area.  Once they made their exit ticket display, they had to explain on a note card what they learned.
I love how creative the students got with these.  This student made a factor rainbow.  I had just taught them about these that week during morning math meeting.
I had lots of science exit tickets.  Parts of a flower, seed dispersal, and pollination.
In social students we read about Florida's state flag and state symbols.
This was a really fun way to introduce exit tickets but I will also be using it again throughout the school year because I love the creativity it allowed the students to show and they really loved doing it.
Do you use exit tickets?  I would love to hear more about how you use them and I hope this is a fun activity you could try with your students:)

Monday Made It with Archers All Stars

Hey there!!! I'm Rachel from Archers All Stars and I'm super excited to join Tara and share my Monday Made It projects with you. I love a clean classroom!!! From the first week of school, I teach my students that it is OUR responsibility to take care of OUR classroom and keep it organized and clean each day! This is the board I made to keep it all organized and functioning throughout the school year!!
Supplies needed to make a board just like this! 26

Step One:

Take pictures of all the jobs you will have in the classroom, print them, and cut them out! I always make 24 jobs, as this is my limit of students I can have in my room each year! Even if I don't have 24 students at the beginning, chances are I will by the end. I only like to do things once, so this is why I go ahead and make them all at the beginning. Below are the pictures I use for each job! jobs together 10 11

Step Two:

Glue all the jobs onto the library pockets using stick glue! Make sure to glue all the little parts down so you won't have a problem on the next step! 14 15

Step Three:

Run these through the laminator!! I made the mistake of not laminating them last year and now you see, I am making a new board already!! You do not have to take the little strips off the backs of the pockets before laminating. In fact, it's better if you don't so they don't get stuck in the laminator machine! Cut them all out and then carefully run a pair of scissors over the edge like the picture shows to open up the pocket. Don't push too hard or you will rip or cut through the pocket! You can also use an xacto knife, but be very careful not to push to hard or you will cut the whole top off the pocket!

Step Four:

Add the poster board to the frame and put the frame edges back on! Leave the plexi-glass off....the pockets do not stick well to the plastic. Start arranging the library pockets (jobs) in the order that you want them to be in. I always move the jobs left to right across the board. Be mindful not to put the same job back to back...spread them out! Then, you can use rubber cement or hot glue to attach them to the board. I like rubber cement because it takes longer to dry and I can move the cards if they are not straight! However, you will have to wait to hang it up on the wall longer so that it is completely dry! Hot glue is pretty quick, but doesn't have a lot of room for error. Upside, you can hang your board on the wall immediately after you're finished! 23 22

Step Five:

Find a great spot in your room to hang up the job board. When my new students arrive this year, I will take a picture of their faces, cut them out, laminate them, and then glue them onto the craft sticks. I love to use pictures for everything because then there is no question about who is supposed to be where at all times. They can't argue with their own face! :) 26

Happy Cleaning!!

This post contains affiliate links for Amazon. By purchasing an item on the Amazon site using these links, I will receive a small commission on your purchase.
Hate those ugly hand sanitizer bottles sitting around??? Well, here is a way to keep them handy without being an absolute eye sore!!
  Tall Vase The vase I used is 10" tall and approximately 5" wide. Hand Sanitizer This size vase will hold a 30 ounce bottle of Germ X Glass Rocks These come in all different shapes and colors!

Step One:

Put a few glass rocks in the bottom of your vase so that the spout of the hand sanitizer is high enough over the mouth of the vase to press down easily!
  IMG_7474 IMG_7475

Step Two:

Put the bottle of hand sanitizer in the middle of the vase and start adding the glass rocks to the vase. Be sure to keep the sanitizer straight as you add the beads. IMG_7477

Step Three:

Fill the vase with the glass beads until the bottle is completely covered and set it in a convenient spot for people to use! Tip: If you are planning to do this in the classroom, I would find an acrylic/plastic vase instead!

Happy Sanitizing!!!

Monday Made It with Learning in Wonderland

Happy Monday! My name is Maribel and I blog over at Learning in Wonderland. I am so excited to be hosting MMI today!

It's hard to believe that it's already July and I go back to work in just a couple of weeks. July definitely puts me into school mode.

There is nothing like starting out the year on a positive and happy note! One way that I do that is by making my team some gifts that they can use throughout the year. I hit the Target dollar spot and found the perfect goodies.

How cute are these baggies? They were only $1 each! I used my Cricut to personalize them. I'm going to be stuffing them with pens, markers, highlighters, white out etc. These will be perfect to bring along to all those meetings that pop up! 

Next up are my teaching bins. These bins are also from the dollar spot and cost $3 each. They are much larger than the ones I've seen before. I knew they'd be the perfect size to hold all our teacher stuff! I'm loving the colors that Target put out this year.

Since I am getting back into school mode, I made a BTS insert for my lightbox. Do you own a lightbox? If you do, you can use this one for FREE! I made it for K-5th grades :-) 

You can pick up this freebie in my shop by clicking on the image below.

This is what it looks like when it's on. So cute!

That is it for me for this week. We would love to see the projects that you have been working on! Grab the button below and link up with us!

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Monday Made It with Inspired Owl's Corner

Hello! I'm Marissa from Inspired Owl's Corner and I'm excited to join Tara and share my Monday Made It projects with you. Monday Made It couldn't have come along at a better time for me. I have a long to-do list of half-finished projects, and this has given me the motivation to cross off a few of them from my to-do list! 
My first project is my Love Notes binder. My students love to write me notes (I'm sure you can relate), and while I'm thrilled they love writing so much, the pile of notes and drawings they give me can be overwhelming! I pin some of them on the wall behind my desk, but that gets messy and I quickly run out of space for all of their creations. I made a cover, bought a large binder, and placed page protectors inside. Now when students write me notes, I will have a place to keep them. If you want to make your own Love Notes binder, you can download the cover, spine, and some writing pages in the preview of my reading and writing pack HERE.

I've wanted to do a V.I.P. table in my classroom for the longest time! The problem is, my classroom is too small and can barely accommodate my 28 students, let alone an extra table or desk. When I saw the over the chair organizers at The Dollar Tree, I knew my problem was solved!
I made some labels that fit inside ZipLoc sandwich and quart sized bags for markers, colored pencils, highlighters, and crayons. I found the cutest highlighters at Target that are perfect for the V.I.P. Kit, and I added bright mechanical pencils too. I also made bookmarks and badges to go along with the pack. I'm going to add special reading pointers to the kit too. Can you think of anything else I should add? I hope my students love this and work hard to be the V.I.P each day.  If you want to try this idea with your class, you can download the freebie HERE
I recently bought a Cameo because I wanted to make my own planner stickers to customize my LifePlanner. There are so many cute stickers on Etsy, but they can be expensive and not exactly what I need for the way I plan. I love my Erin Condren Teacher Planner, but there are a few pages that go unused each year. I thought I could create some stickers to modify some of the pages of my teacher planner to make them more useful. I know how important it is to keep track of parent contact, but I don't always take the time to jot down every conversation. I decided to make a section for parent contact with the unused pages. Since my planner is always with me, it will be easy to jot down the name, date, and reason for the phone call. 
I don't use an online grade book, so I always order extra check off lists in my planner to keep track of grades and homework. I made labels for each subject that fit perfectly on the pages.
I color code each subject when I write my lesson plans, so I figured color coded subject headers would be useful to add to my planner, so I've added subject sticker headers to my planner.
I made these labels in PowerPoint, and if you want to try them in your planner, I'm sharing them HERE. There are editable and premade stickers in the file. I made a seating chart label for the grid pages too- that picture isn't shown. (I have last year's teacher planner. I always buy my teacher planners when they go on sale in the spring. I've heard the new ones are set up a little differently, so I'm not sure if these stickers will work if you have the brand new planner, but you can try them out.)

That's what I've been up to this week! Next week I hope to have a few more projects and freebies to share, since I still have quite a few that are half-finished! 
Now it's your turn! What projects have you created? Be sure to link up below and share. And if you share on instragram, be sure to use #4thgradefrolics so we can see your creations on there! Thank you for stopping by, and have a great week!


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