Wednesday, July 31, 2013

101 Book Activities Kids Love

As I look back on the teachers I had in elementary school, I wonder if their jobs were as difficult as ours are, today. Why was I thinking about this? I guess it's because this time of year, teachers are scrambling to find the best of the best for our students. We stay awake nights wondering if the lessons are creative, exciting and encourage a true love of learning. We remind each other of the great sales where we can find free or inexpensive supplies for our classrooms. It's also the time of year when we're looking for new clothing for the new school year.

Tonight, I was thinking about book reports in particular. When I was in school, we were told to read a book and do a report about it. I blogged about this on an earlier post so as you can see, this topic really intrigues me.

We had a school librarian who was a volunteer, not a paid employee. She was a kind, sweet woman who worked her tail off to make sure the books were always in the correct Dewey Decimal section and displayed at kids' eye levels. 

That kind woman was my mother who was set up the entire library when I was in kindergarten. The school was new and had no library, so mom devoted her entire summer to setting it up for us. 

A vivid recollection was the metal stamp she used to stamp the date the book was due, on the card in the front cover. It made sort of a CLICK/THUMP sound and I always noticed she had ink stains all over her fingers from stamping hundreds of books kids were taking out of her library. 

Years later when I began teaching, we had "ditto" machines, that had purplish, permanent ink Get it on your hands, and the stains wouldn't come off for days. Get it on a shirt and it wouldn't wash away.  Don't take a swipe at your nose if you have an itch or you'll have a bloomin' purple nose the rest of the week. 

I'll never forget the time I stopped at a toll booth driving home from school one day, and there was a cute guy collecting toll money. I handed him my money and he said "So you're a teacher uh?" I looked at his big grin and said, "How do you know that?" 

 I'll never forget his next words..... "Because you have DITTO MACHINE INK on your HAND"  Talk about being embarrassed.. I must have scrubbed my hands for two hours when I got home. Did the stain disappear? NO.. :)

Getting back on topic.. When I became a teacher I swore I'd give my students choices of what kinds of book reports they'd do. This is the list I came up with and honestly, I'm still jotting down ideas.

Download this FREE packet of 101 book report ideas to the book report folder on your computer for easy access and just be glad it wasn't created on a ditto machine or your hands might have turned purple. :)

photo of 101 Book Activities Kids Love, PDF, books, reading, ELA, book reports

Friday, July 26, 2013

Back to School with the BlogLovin Blog Hop


Bloggers share lessons, teaching ideas and more, then link up and travel on blog hops to see what other teachers are offering. 

What I really like is that each blog is very uniquely designed. Reading the posts provides me with new ideas. The best part of all, is you can easily move from one blog to another with just a click of your mouse. 

The most recent blog hop I joined was a Back to School blog hop. There are so many wonderful back to school lessons created by very talented teachers who love sharing their ideas. 

Take a minute to hop from one blog to another to see what's being offered. I guarantee you'll find many things you'll want to start the new school year!

photo of Back to School with the BlogLovin Blog Hop lesson plans, teaching materials

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

In Your Hands (Song for My Teacher)

We teachers sometimes don't know what becomes of our students years down the road.  

I think a lot about them, wondering what they're doing now...

I just happened to find this song while doing research for something else.  I hit the play button and before I knew it, these questions popped into my mind...

Did I make a difference in their lives? 

Was I a good role model? 

 Did I keep the "bar high"? 

Were my expectations consistent?

Did I expect things from my students that I'd expect of my own children?

Did they realize that my purpose was to lead them down a path to help them become productive, responsible adults?

One of the most important questions that I think about is....

Do they know how MUCH I care about them?

The minute I heard the song and really listened to the words,  I pinned it on Pinterest and put it on my Facebook page. 

I must have played it 20 times and each time I thought about those who've passed through my classes and all the students around the world, who will soon start a new school year. 

As I listened to it, tears streamed down my face..... very happy tears. 

So, of course, I set out to find other videos about teachers.

With the beginning of a new school year approaching...

How are YOU feeling?

I know you're busy, but take a few minutes to watch these videos.

Good teachers need to be UPLIFTED

Good teachers need A PAT ON THE BACK

Good teachers need to know they make a difference in children's lives,  
but it's sometimes 
not apparent ...

Take a few minutes and watch these videos. :)

"Once a teacher, ALWAYS a teacher"....