Monday, May 4, 2015

What Works Linky and HUGE GIVEAWAY!

I am SO excited to link up with Lisa from PAWSitively Teaching and Marissa from Inspired Owl's Corner  for this wonderful What Works Linky and GIANT giveaway!  We wanted to have this special giveaway to thank all of you wonderful teachers for everything that you do every single day. 

Not only are the prizes amazing, but so are all of the wonderful tips that teachers are sharing on the linky about what works best in their classrooms! 

My first favorite tip seems like the simplest thing in the world.  It is, actually.  My first tip is... Be kind.  To everyone.  Always.  Be kind to the children, no matter what you feel like. 

Be kind to your coworkers, every single one of your coworkers, even the ones who aren't always that kind to you. 

I love this saying- even if some days, you may have to read it over and over and over to remind yourself how nice you are...  

That being said... don't forget to ...
 Don't be so giving that you forget to take care of yourself and always put yourself last.  It's easy to do.  Try your best and be proud of who you are.

Back to being nice... I keep a bag of Hershey hugs and kisses or some Dove Chocolates in a drawer in case someone is having a bad day and could just use some chocolate. Yes, you may eat a bag or two all by yourself throughout the year, but you deserve it, too, sometimes. 

I have some fun little Dollar Store goofy gifts that I keep just in case somebody needs to smile-like these little solar dancing things! It's easy to do, you just need to remember to do it.

I also have my class make cards for everything- thank you notes for band and chorus concerts or parent volunteers, get well cards for students who are sick, good luck cards for teams in our school...  I think it's so important for children to learn to be thankful and encouraging and to let others know that they are. 

Having a fun card making center as a free choice area with markers, stickers, envelopes, and fancy paper  encourages children to do this on their own, too!


My next favorite thing that works in my classroom is keeping activities that go with books that I use for lessons right inside the book. That way, I always have a copy of the activity I want to use to go with the book right there with it.  I may have the activity filed another place as well, but I always keep one copy in the book, and find that I use that copy all the time. 

This works great for sub plans, an unexpected block of time that you have and want a lesson for, or if another teacher needs a quick book and activity.  You can be a hero. 

It's always nice to be able to pull a book with an activity to go along with it, and know you've got at least a 45 minute activity to do. I use writing prompts that go with my books ALL the time. I see some of my kids' very best writing with the one page writing prompts, and they love them. 

I have been doing this forever.  Finally, I put all of my writing prompts together and made some to go with books I've wanted them for, for years.  If you would like the prompts that I use,  I made two sets.  First is my Author Studies, which has 160 different writing prompts for 100 books. The great thing about these prompts is that they work equally well for K-2, because the students write to the prompts at their level. If they can write only one sentence to go with a picture, that's fine. If they can write more details, even better!

The books in this packet are all by 8 authors: Eric Carle, Donald Crews, Kevin Henkes, Laura Numeroff, Amy Krouse Rosenthal, David Shannon, Mo Willems, and Karma Wilson. Once we start reading books by one author, my kids love to read more and more, so we do lots of mini- author studies. That is how I use this set. Although, some days, I will just copy off a prompt for a favorite Kevin Henkes book and have a great lesson with that. Here is a more up close look at the individual author sections. 

My other packet, Writing About Books, has 170 prompts for 102 completely different books. These are some all time favorites in all areas.

Don't forget TPT Teacher Appreciation Day Sale is May 5 and 6!

These are the books in  this packet:

Every one of my books has at least one folded paper activity inside.  Some have pictures of art ideas or even titles of other books that I like to use to go along with that book.  

My third favorite thing that works in my class is Whole Brain Teaching.  I use some of the WBT ideas- not all of them.  If you haven't tried it, my tip would be to try out some different parts and see what works for you. The kids love it and are very engaged when I use WBT.  Since I am such a visual learner, I watched lots and lots of Youtube videos of WBT in action, and learned about it that way.  I put my favorite videos together into a Prezi if you'd like to watch them and see what it's like.  I love watching other teachers teach. I wish we had more time in "real life" to do that. 

What I did was to take some "baby steps" toward WBT at first and try some things out.  Once you have fun and feel confident with some parts, you can always add more if you'd like.  

Here we go with the fabulous prizes... are you ready?   Remember, the more entries you have, the better your chances are of winning.  Good luck and Happy Teacher Appreciation Week from all of us!
Just take a look at everything you could win...One lucky reader will win this entire prize package!
Prize Bundle #1 Includes
PLUS....$140 Gift Box of Fabulous Teacher Supplies sent to you from Amazon
We aren't finished yet....take a look at everything a second lucky winner will win!
Prize Bundle #2 Includes
PLUS....$140 Gift Box of Fabulous Teacher Supplies sent to you from Amazon
Be sure to enter both rafflecopters for a better chance at winning one of these amazing prize bundles!

Enter to Win Prize Bundle #1 Here

Enter to Win Prize Bundle #2 Here

You won't want to miss out on all the other great secrets being shared by successful teachers!  Be sure to check out all the other great posts below.

1 comment:

  1. I absolutely love those quotes! The first 2 especially resonate as we begin another week. Thank you & have a wonderful week! Jen


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