Sunday, August 19, 2012


Am I the only one out there that has not started school yet?? It seems so! Wednesday is our first "Official" day back, but we can get our keys tomorrow! However, since my husband is off on Mondays and Tuesdays and it will be our last days off together now that school is starting :(  I will probably enjoy my days with him and go back on Wednesday! Seeing everyone's classroom pictures is making me so excited to get in my room though, that if it didn't fall on his days off, I'd be there! Back to School Night is Friday, and I'm really worried that I'm not gonna get it all done in two days! In fact, I know I won' I can see myself there all day and night on both Wednesday and Thursday!!! So excited to put up and implement all my new things I made this summer thanks to the inspiration of all my bloggy friends and Pinterest!!!

AND.....I'm still making things!!! Here are two more things I made this week! Just when I think I'm done with all my room prep.....I see another brilliant idea and then I'm off to the store again!! 

This will be my STAR STUDENT center display! I don't have a dry erase marker here at home to show you, but on the white section of the bottom frame I will write the Star Student's name. There is quite a glare on this photo so I have posted another below. I got the frames at Dollar Tree, the ribbon at Walmart, and the rest is from my scrapbooking kit. You probably can't see it, but the ribbon and the scrapbooking paper has STARS on it!!! This will go in the center of my STAR WALL and other things will be around it!

I also did this for my "WORD of the DAY" but I need to get two more frames to complete it!

This is the "STAR STUDENT OF THE MONTH" letter that will go home with the student. I teach Special Education and only have 8 students, so I will do my Star Student monthly, rather than weekly!! You can get a copy of this document for free here.

 I tried to share an editable copy so you could change my name to yours, but google docs kept distorting it and I couldn't figure it out! You can always just white out my name and sign yours!

This sheet will have a sheet attached that the parents will complete and return! You can get that sheet here! It is REALLY cute and can be used on your display wall, which I am planning to do! I would like to credit the blog that this sheet came from, but I cannot remember where I got it! I go myself a blog notebook now and am learning as a newer blogger to write everything down that I borrow!! If I can locate the author I will most definitely give credit where credit is due!!!

AND......for my next project! I made a nameplate for my desk out of scrabble tiles!!! TOO CUTE!! I Love It!!! This BRILLIANT idea came from Ms. Runde's Room and was featured on DIY Classroom! I got the scrabble tiles from ebay and the embellishments from JoAnn's Craft Store. 

Check Ms. Runde's out to see a different version that is super cute!! 

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Monday, August 13, 2012


I'm so excited to link up with Monday Made It today at 4th Grade Frolics and show you what I've been making this week!! Many of you may have seen the mirror I made last Monday, but it was kinda plain Jane and I wasn't super excited about it....but I needed a mirror for over my classroom sink and it would have worked. BUT THEN......I happened to be at Good Will and saw this mirror for only 4 bucks and had an idea so I bought it! Here is the before picture. A little blurry, but you can see it's just a plain green mirror.

I bought some wooden ABC's from Walmart and painted them with spray paint. 

And Here is my finished mirror!!! Once the letters dried, I used a hot glue gun to glue them on !! I am much happier with this one than my last one! My room is done in primary colors, so this is going to match perfectly above my sink and I can also use it as a learning tool, by having the students sing their ABC's when they are at the sink!

Monday Made It #2
Next, I made four pocket folders! I like having everything in one place and organized. In my last Monday Made It, I organized my assessment binder so that all of my assessments and assessment materials will be in one place this year and easy to retrieve. Now I thought if I could just find four pocket folders, I could organize my students work samples, and their state, district, and benchmark assessments in one place for easy retrieving. So I decided to try and make my own and they turned out fabulous! Here is what you will need if you choose to make these! It is very simple. 

You'll need hole puncher, glue stick, sharpie, scissors, and two folders for each child, or for each 4-pocket you will be making. You need the folders with prongs. 

Fold one of your folders backwards and cut off the prongs. There is a fold there to cut along. If you have a paper cutter, it would be easier, but mine is at school so I had to use scissors. 

This is how it will look!

Then put them together back to back and slide both pieces underneath the prongs in your second folder!

Use a sharpie to make a small dot. 

Then, with your hole puncher, punch each dot you made. This does not work with a 3-hole punch as it does not line up properly. 

Lift the flap up before punching the bottom hole or you will punch the flap. 

Then insert it into the prongs as you would do with a sheet of paper. 

Last, glue the two sides of the center folder you inserted together, so they do not flap and stay together. 

And there's your 4-pocket folder!!!

This is how I will use mine! But you could use it many ways!!! I also plan to make some fancier labels for mine, but did this with business cards just so you could get the jist! last thing! You'll need to tuck the prong strip underneath the flap so that it lays nicely and will hold your papers. 

Monday Made It #3
I made business cards with my contact info to give out to parents on Back To School Night!!! The picture is a little blurry.....I'm a horrible picture taker, but they are actually super clear! I love the way they turned. The clipart is from "Just So Scrappy". I finally found the clipart package that was used to design my blog page. So excited to find this! 

Monday Made It #4
And last, I made these bags of peppermints to give to parents on Back To School Night! I used the soft those! I purchased the labels from Ashley at Cupcake Express from her Etsy shop and then added my own text! I thought the colors blended so well with the mints that I had to have them. I believe I paid $3.50 for them and there are six designs! 

And there's my Monday Made Its!!! I actually made two other things too, but I don't want to show those until I get them displayed in my room. I still have until Monday off and haven't been in my room all summer!!! Yikes this is my last week of vacation!! I know many of you are already back!

I also have a question for you! I just finished my second Master's, so now I have a M.Ed and a M.S. My husband thinks that I should put these titles beside my name on my contact business card above. What do you think??? I always feel like I am being boastful when I put my Masters titles by my name and I worry about people thinking this.....whereas my husband says I should be proud to display it!!! Let me know what you think!!!!

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Wednesday, August 8, 2012


Okay, Okay, I know I'm a little late for this party, but I have been making things all week and was so anxious to post my very first "Monday Made It" yesterday and then never got around to it! So here goes....better late than never right??

This week I made a collection of 12 assessment tools to use in my classroom this year. I was not happy with my assessment notebook and method that I have been using previously. It just wasn't working for me! For one, I didn't like scrambling around for coins, flashcards, and materials each time I was assessing a student. Two, I like to keep running records and I want them in one place. I wanted to be able to look at one sheet to see each student's progress from trimester to trimester for the entire year, and also know exactly what they missed. I don't want to just know that they got 18/26 letter sounds.....I want to know exactly what letter sounds they missed. Other assessments I have used or found require a new recording sheet each time you assess and I find myself flipping through all the paperwork in their assessment folder comparing their results and progress. So I also wanted a master recording form where I could put all of their assessment results and locate them in one place. I believe with these documents I have eliminated my assessment problems and will have everything organized and in one location for the new school year.

You should also know that I teach special needs children that are in grades 1 - 5, so my students are on many different levels and a few of my students are at a KG level. So these assessments are designed to meet the needs of special needs students and/or students at various levels and may not suit the needs of general education students.

And thanks to Ms. Jessica and her TECHNOLOGY TUESDAYS at A Turn to Learn, I learned how to do this today!

Letter & sound recognition  sheet for student.  I need to figure out how to put a border around these before posting so they show up better. Doesn't show up that well with the white on white. And I couldn't make them any bigger because if I do, they come out blurry! 
Letter & sound recognition recording sheet for teacher.
You'll have all of your assessment data for the year in one place and be able to easily analyze your data.  
Phonics Assessment recording sheet for teacher
Phonics Assessment sheet for student
Relative Positions of Objects K.G.1-2
Comparing Numbers Assessment K.CC.7
First & Last Name Assessment
Money Assessment
No more looking for my coins. 

Basic Skills Master Recording Sheet for Level 1 and Level 2
Here, every assessment you do can be recorded in ONE place.
 I will use Level 1 with my lower students and Level 2 with my higher students. The student may not complete every assessment listed on the recording sheet as every assessment may not be applicable to them. 

Behavioral/Social Skills Recording Sheet

Body Parts Recording Sheet
Fine & Gross Motor Skills Recording Sheet
I will place all of my assessments in sheet protectors and then into an assessment binder. I am planning to copy the four Master Recording Forms (the last four listed above) on the four sides (one on each side) of a manilla folder so that I can easily and quickly refer to my student's assessment data, while their assessments will go inside of the folder. Everything will be in one place!! I think this is going to work perfectly for me and hope that you will find something useful to use for your assessments.

AND lastly.....I made this!

It's kinda hard to take a picture of a mirror! It's nothing fancy, but I'm not super crafty. I have looked for a cute mirror to hang over the sink in my classroom since last school year and have had no luck. So I bought this mirror at Walmart for 5 bucks and painted it. It was black before, but I forgot to take a before picture. I really like primary colors and those are the colors of my classroom, so it will match perfectly! And there you have it.....two projects knocked off of "My To Do List!" Yay! Actually three.....if you count doing my very first "Made It Monday!"

Wow! That took a while! In long that it's now after midnight, so I am actually posting this on Wednesday rather than Tuesday! Oh well, the linky is still open for three more it must be okay! If any of you have any ideas or strategies for how you assess your special needs students, I would love to hear them!  

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Friday, August 3, 2012


August is here so I'm linking up today with Farley's popular Currently from Oh Boy Fourth Grade

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Thursday, August 2, 2012

Discrete Trial Teaching Data Form

Do you use DTT (Discrete Trial Teaching) in your Sped classroom?? If so, you may find this form helpful for collecting your data. I use DTT daily and was not happy with the form that I used last year, so as one of my summer projects I made a form to accommodate my teaching needs. Please feel free to DOWNLOAD the DTT form below and use it in your classroom!
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