Wednesday, December 9, 2015

All I Want for Christmas... {From a Teacher to a Parent}

All I want for Christmas... for you to spend time with your child. Hold them, cuddle them, tell them how much you love them. Ask them about their day and talk to them. for you to check your child's backpack each evening for little notes, their graded work, or things that might need to be signed...and send them back. for you to value the importance of home assignments that may come home and use this as an opportunity to spend time with your child and show interest in what they're learning. for you to read with your child each evening and value the importance of reading. for you to attend conferences and IEP meetings that we schedule and be an active participant in your child's education. for you to ensure your child gets enough sleep each night so that they can learn when they come to school. for you to send your child to school each day bathed and in clean clothes different from the day before. for you to drop by the class from time to time to put a smile on your child's face and see what they're learning. for you to talk to me. Share with me problems that are going on at home. Ask about your child's progress and what you can do at home to help. Be my partner! 

...And maybe...every now and then, a thank you would be the greatest gift of all!!! :)

Saturday, November 28, 2015

See What Others are Saying: Wishlist Linky!!

Cyber Monday is in two days...and that means #tpt shopping is on!!!! Woohoo! My favorite shopping day of the year!!! I don't do Black Friday! Crowds of people and long thanks!! 

For those of you planning on doing some #tpt shopping, my store will be 20% off for Cyber Monday and Tuesday...11/30 - 12/1.

And use the TpT code {smile} to save even more!!!

Read what others are saying about my most wishlisted items. 

Check it out {here}

Check it out {here}

Check it out {here}

Have BUNCHES of fun shopping!!! :)

Monday, November 9, 2015

Recognize Your Paras on Paraprofessional Day 11/18

November 18th is Paraprofessional Day!!! These individuals play such a huge role within schools, yet probably receive the least recognition. They care about kids just as much as you. Many of them spend their own money for classroom treats and give their own time for after school events. Many of them go home each evening with thoughts of a kid stuck in their head, just like you...thinking of ways they can reach a student. Many of them SHOULD have become teachers themselves! 

I have two amazing paras! I mean AMAZING! Lately, I've been thinking that I need to do more throughout the year to recognize my paras. While I always thank them for their hard work and bring them little treats for the holidays, I decided I wanted to do some extra special things for them this year! So I shouted out to some of my blogging friends for some ideas! I'm happy to share these fabulous ideas with you and help you prepare to recognize your paras on Paraprofessional Day and all throughout the year!!! :)

Here's what they had to say...

Autism Educators says, "First and foremost, we laugh. Add a little laughter to an extra challenging day, and it goes a long way. Having started this journey many years ago as a paraprofessional myself, I understand how important it is to show them the same respect and to share the "not so fun" tasks, like changing diapers or messes, disassembling task boxes, etc.; whenever possible. I like to also celebrate my para's birthday in a big way and have the kids get involved. They love it, and she does too!"

On Paraprofessional Day: Change all of the diapers and take care of all of the pottying needs. 

Learning Ahoy says she asks her paras for their opinion and input. "I let them know I trust their judgment. I always try to get them something for holidays and the end of the year. Last year the sped team had lunch catered for all of the paras at the end of the school year." 

On Paraprofessional Day: Cater lunch

Mrs. P's Specialities says, "I randomly leave them treats throughout the school year. We also have a special celebration in the spring to thank them for all of their hard work. The therapists and I pool money and get them each a gift. I write them each a personal thank you card and we make them breakfast or lunch. My teaching assistants are amazing!"

On Paraprofessional Day: Bring them breakfast, a gift, or a thank you card.

Mrs. D's Corner says, "My aide loves monster energy drinks, so occasionally I'll get him one. Last year for para day, I made him a gift basket with monsters and then a picture of our class." 

On Paraprofessional Day: Make them a gift basket with their favorite things or bring them one of their favorite things.

Miss, Hey, Miss says, "I try to meet with them before school starts and take them out to lunch, write little notes during the year, get them little goodies and gifts. We definitely look back and laugh over the little things or we go crazy."

On Paraprofessional Day: Have fun, let loose and laugh a lot!! Take them out to dinner after school.

The Eager Teacher says, "I make my aides lunch sporadically in the year...I will make soup and bring it in or baked mac and cheese. Any day that you don't have to make a lunch is a good day! I text them the night before and say don't pack a lunch!"

On Paraprofessional Day: Surprise them with lunch with a text the night before! Consider making their favorites. 

Our Sunshine Committee is also scouring our Pinterest boards, as we plan to place some sort of cute treat/quote in all of the para's mailboxes at our school on Paraprofessional's Day!

You can find some simple, easy, and inexpensive gift ideas for your paras on these two Pinterest Boards!

Don't forget to recognize your paraprofessionals on November 18th....and all throughout the year! Whether it's just a simple verbal thank you, a coffee, a luncheon, or a gift...your thoughtfulness will go a long way and remind them how valuable they are to your school! Just like our students.... even adults need positive reinforcement!! :)

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Ziggedy! Earn Easy Cash For Your Class When You Shop!

Ziggedy wants to give you cash...why not take it!!! I was so excited to discover Ziggedy a couple of weeks ago, so I want to make sure all of you are taking advantage of it!!

Ziggedy is absolutely free and every time you, your family members, friends, or your students' parents shop at one of their thousand plus participating retailers, they'll give your class money! Participating shops include all of your favorites, including some of my favorites below. And with Christmas just around the corner, if you're like me, you'll be doing a lot of online shopping soon! So why not earn some cash for your classroom!

Best Buy
Sam's Club
Home Depot

Check out their video!

To get started you, your family members, friends, or your students' parents sign up with this super simple form!
Parent letters to send home and a sign up link for you to share with friends and family is provided on Ziggedy's website. If you have a blog, you can also install their widget on your side bar>>>>>> >>>>>check mine out!

Here's how it works.

 Supporters download the "Ziggegy Reminder" after signing up.

This is the way I have been using it, and the most convenient. But, there are two additional ways supporters can shop too without downloading the reminder...and because I have found that the reminder does not pop up with some of my favorite retailers. 

Here are the other two ways shoppers can use Ziggedy.

You can also compare prices at other retailers.

You can always see what's in your piggedy bank, as well as view detailed transaction history. Ziggedy sends your classroom earnings check out quarterly; in January, April, July, and October.

With one simple click and less than a minute to sign up, look at the money you could be earning for your classroom! 

Even if you don't get a response from your parents, friends, and family...and you shop online...then earn money for your classroom for your own shopping!!! 

{hint} It's time to start Christmas shopping! {hint}

Good luck with Ziggedy! I hope Ziggedy will help you earn funds for your classroom! 
Click here to get started!

Disclosure: I am in no way affiliated with Ziggedy and was not asked or reimbursed by Ziggedy to write this content. 

Thanks a Bunch,

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Cool, Not Cool? Visual Behavioral Rules, Discussion Cards, & Task Cards

Have you seen my new "Cool, Not Cool?" set?
I am so excited about these and my students wanted to review them again on Thursday, after reviewing them on Wednesday!!! :)

As special education teachers, we frequently deal with behavioral issues in our classrooms like flopping, kicking, spitting, pushing, blurting out, profanity, biting, etc.?

Thanks to "A Sketchy Guy," I was able to make the perfect posters/cards for these challenging students!

There are 3 sets!! A classroom rules set, a discussion cards set, and a task card set. And each set includes 28 inappropriate/appropriate behaviors!

I use the "Cool, not cool" method in my classroom. For example, "Show me cool hands," or "That's not cool, this is cool."

This set can be displayed as class rule posters. All 28 posters show the inappropriate (not cool) behavior and the appropriate (cool) behavior. 

This is a glimpse of the class discussion set and also includes the 28 different behaviors. 
 I used these as a whole group discussion activity with my students. Hold each poster up and ask the students, "Cool, or not cool?" Discuss reasons why the behavior is cool, or not cool.

Task Cards!
All 28 behaviors are also included in this set and students can do these independently in centers or in work task boxes. 

I had my students circle the correct answer with a dry-erase marker, but you can also have them clip the correct answer using clothespins. 

Check out the preview to see each set!!!
I hope you can use these in your classroom too! You can check it out {here}.

Thanks a Bunch,

Friday, October 30, 2015

Five for Friday!

Well, I said I would hopefully be back this week to link up with Doodle Bugs Teaching to share some exciting news!! Well I'm back, so if you read my Five for Friday post last week, you know what that means!!!

I won!!!! 

If you didn't read last week's post....and have no idea what I'm talking about...I was named Educator of the Year at the Community Awards dinner Saturday night! The night was amazing! You can read all about my amazing evening {here} or just scroll down to the next post.
No school today for this teacher! We honor Nevada Day the last Friday of October. I've joined in with all of these NV TpTers to bring you a sale today! Check it out {here}.
This is going on right now and I'm participating! Hop on over and grab some great tricks and spooktacular treats from numerous bloggers...and enter my giveaway!
We made some delicious, mini pumpkin cream pies this week! Super easy and no bake!
I got a little creative this year and made these cute treats for yesterday's Halloween party!

What a fabulous week!
If you didn't get here from the link up, head on over and link up your fun from your Halloween week!

Thanks a Bunch,

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Educator of the Year!!!!

Yes, this just happened!!!! Saturday night, I received the most prestigious award I've ever received...The Educator of the Year Award during our Community Achievement Awards Dinner!!

It is so surreal and I'm still having a hard time soaking it in and believing it actually happened!  

I am still finding myself speechless and even debated whether or not to blog about this most amazing moment in my life...which is when I always look to my husband. He is my biggest supporter. He was the motivator behind me opening my TpT store and the reason I hang my B.A., M.Ed., and M.S. degrees on my wall behind my desk. 

I tend to be very modest. But after all, this is a teaching blog, and my special education adventure, so why wouldn't I blog about this amazing experience!!!?? Right!?

So this amazing adventure all started on 9/8 when I received a notification that I had been nominated for the Educator of the Year Award and it has been a whirlwind since.

This is just one category of our Community Achievement Awards that includes 14 categories ranging from Citizen of the Year to Entrepreneur of the Year. The Community Achievement Awards are held every year, hosted by the Chamber of Commerce, and includes the areas in our tri-state area; Laughlin, NV, Bullhead City, AZ, Fort Mohave, AZ, and Mohave Valley, AZ. 

Once I received my nomination notification, it was requested that I send in a personal bio of 250-300 words and a 200-300 word statement of my biggest accomplishments. These were then judged and narrowed down by respected judges on the panel to Four top individuals. My essays made it to the top 4!!! This was super exciting in itself!! :)

I was then notified that I had made it to the next step, was in the top four, and now I needed to interview with the judges! 

I made an appointment to interview on 9/29 and when I showed up I was super surprised!!! I was expecting 2-3 there were 11 I believe!!! When I walked into the room, my heart sank and I immediately said, "Wow, I wasn't expecting this many of you." They all asked me one question. I was so nervous, my hands were literally shaking and I was thankful for the chair I sat in that had arms to contain my hands!! I answered all of their questions and left feeling really good about the interview! 

After the interviews were conducted with all four of the top nominees, the judges cast an anonymous vote. Those votes are then compiled to select the winner!! 

We then attended the dinner on 10/24. The night was amazing! I felt like I was at the grammy awards! The service was amazing and the bathroom was no disservice!! Hot towels, scope, special soaps, and body was literally amazing!!! :)

The Set Up for 500 attendees! It was such a beautiful setting...the pictures do no justice!
Displaying photo.JPG
The first hour was happy hour!
The second hour dinner was served...filet mignon!
Exquisite dinner!

The third hour was the awards!!
And then it happened!!! While it was all magical, this moment will never be forgotten!

The pictures aren't the greatest as they're all taken from my phone, and taken by my best friend that knows she is a horrible picture taker...and let's just say she may have had a few cocktails :)! But they are still memories to cherish!!!

When my name got called as Educator of the Year! Look at my sweet hubby giving me a standing ovation!! Love him!
Walking up to get my award!!
Walking the red carpet!

Getting my award!!!
Walking off stage with my award! :)
Hubby and I getting a little emotional!

My hubby and I!

My Best friend came!!!!

Them making me be silly!!! You should see my other ones!!

Thanks so much for sharing my incredibly amazing night with me!!! A day that will not be forgotten!! I am honored to receive this prestigious award and honored to have the privilege to make a difference in students' lives every day!!! :)