How to Decrease Your Teacher Mental-Load

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

There's something called mental load and then there's something called teacher mental load. If they were in the same room together, they'd be on total opposite ends of it. Actually, they'd be on total opposite ends of the house because teaching is one of the most demanding professions there is and it's quite difficult to compare it to other occupations. So, to all you teachers showing up everyday, surviving the hard times and powering on when there's barely any fuel left in the tank, you deserve the biggest gold star there is. And I hope you all give yourselves the credit you deserve. 

Now, how does this mental load thing relate to teaching? Well, on average, teachers make around 1500 decisions everyday. Yes, that's right, I said EVERYDAY. That's a whole bunch of decision-making in an itty bitty space. This revelation shocked me at first. That means you're making approximately 4 decisions a minute on an average school day which is more than a brain surgeon, doctor or paramedic. In fact, the only profession that makes more decisions than a teacher is an air traffic control worker. I hope you're starting to feel like you deserve that gold star.

Free Sound Strips

Sunday, February 2, 2020

I've got a free CVC center for you all! 

These sound strips are super versatile; they can be used to practice beginning sounds, middle sounds and ending sounds which is why I love them so much. You can have all your students complete the exact same activity by simply modifying the position of the sound that they are focusing on. Beginning sounds are much simpler for students to discern than middle or ending sounds so you can reuse the activity once they've mastered beginning sounds and have them work out the remaining sounds when they are ready. 

This freebie also includes recording sheets for students to note down all the sounds they've deciphered. There are also sheets included for middle sounds and ending sounds as well as an answer key for easy marking.

Guided Reading Toolkit

Saturday, January 18, 2020

It is finally here! The ultimate toolkit for guided reading that will simplify your life while improving your students' reading comprehension skills at the same time. The best thing about this toolkit is that it works with absolutely ANY fictional text so you can use this all year round and the activities will remain fresh and relevant. Plus, there is a nonfiction task box included too for when you're reading a nonfiction text with your students. It literally covers everything you need and will soon become your new best friend in the classroom.

What is the toolkit?

The toolkit features 16 different task boxes that are organized by a specific reading area, skill or strategy. Each task box is filled with purposeful and engaging tasks that students can complete directly in their books. Yep, you heard that right. DIRECTLY IN THEIR BOOKS. That means no worksheets, no running around trying to figure out what learning activities to give them, no waiting at the photocopier and NO PREP. It's all in the toolkit, ready to go, at anytime.

CVC Centers and Activities Volume Two

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

I'm excited for you all to properly meet Volume Two of my CVC Centers and Activities. If you haven't already seen Volume One, you can check it out here. I'm the biggest fangirl of center activities and much prefer them to worksheets because they are interactive, reusable, bright and offer more variety.  This center packet provides more opportunities for your students to practice their short vowel words in an engaging and fun way.

The Activities

This packet includes 12 different centers which are related to all things CVC. I've added a variety of different activities so that students can get a chance to identify, sort, read, spell, rhyme and write short vowel words. Here is an overview of the activities:

1. Spell a CVC Word

To complete this activity, students choose a card and then use their early phonetic skills to sound out and spell the word represented by the picture. They write the word next to the number shown on the card. All the pictures included are easy for students to recognize so you won't have a bunch of students asking "What is this card, Miss?". This center is great because there is a recording sheet included too which makes for easy marking (an answer key is included as well). This activity is also great if your running literacy rotations on a shorter time frame. Students can always pick up and continue on where they left off the next day.

How to Make the Most Out of Your Holiday Break

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Let's admit it. December was hard. Really hard. The Christmas season always seems to make students a little more rowdy and a little less controllable. You're tired, they're tired and it feels like it should be December 74th already. So whether you're on a break yet or counting down the days, hours and seconds until the last day of school, here's a quick guide to help ensure that you make the most of this well-deserved time off.

Whether your break is for one week, two weeks or six weeks, it's not the length of time that matters, it's how you're spending it. If your plan is to spend the entire break doing a Marie Kondo style clean of your house, you'll end up back to school in the exact same state of mind that you left it. During your time away from school, it's important that you practice balance. I have a few tips and ideas to help you plan your break so you return to school rested, rejuvenated and ready to tackle a new year.

5 Ways To Make the Most of Your Holiday Break

I have put together a list of 5 things that you can implement to make the most of your holiday break.

Second Grade Numbers and Place Value

Friday, December 13, 2019

It’s finally here! My Math worksheet series has finally hit second grade. And what better way to kick it off than with place value. 

Place value in second grade has students further exploring how the position of a digit in a number determines its value. Students begin looking at hundreds, tens and ones while continuing to develop their number sense skills.

To effectively grasp 3 digit place value, students should be exposed to a wide variety of activities allowing them to ‘play’ with numbers. Students should have opportunities to compare numbers, order them, compose them, decompose them, expand them and so on.

I designed this packet of activities to help your students explore 3 digit numbers and become number champions. I can’t wait to share the activities with you!! 

The Activities

There are over 70 different activities included with many of them being interactive. Plus, I have included some differentiation options too, so if you still have students working on tens and ones, there's a bunch of activities for them too.

CVC Centers and Activities Volume One

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Hi friends,

I've finally completed this CVC center packet and I'm so thrilled to share it with you. It's taken me a whole two weeks to get it done and it was so big that I had to split it into volumes. So this post is all about Volume One and it is packed full of fun and engaging activities to get your students learning about, practicing and mastering their short vowel words.

The Activities

This packet features 12 different activities which are designed to provide students with hands-on experience with CVC words. All the short vowel sounds are covered as well as all the common word families. Here is an overview of the activities.

1. CVC I Spy

Let's start with one of my favorites from the packet. This activity is exactly like I Spy but for CVC words. Each mat comes with a list of CVC words that students need to read and locate somewhere on the mat. Once they find it, they circle it using erasable marker and check it off the list.