Saturday, February 22, 2014

GIVEAWAY, Say Something, Fire Anniversary

It's time for another Five For Friday!
 Here are five highlights from my week.
1. My colleague showed me a neat guided reading strategy this week that I'm loving. It's called: "Say Something." I really like the strategy because you can see how the students are thinking about their texts and it gives them a tool to help them express more meaningful ideas about their reading. I didn't invent this, I just typed it up to tape to my tables. If you want the free file, click {HERE.}

Here's how I use it:
1. I taped the "Say Something" pages to my guided reading table. 
2. Each day, the students pick a box before they start warm up reading and they read through all of the questions in that box.
3. They warm up read while I do a running record.
4. When I'm done, I ask them to stop reading and put up their thumbs when they're ready to say something.
5. Then they turn to their neighbor and say something using a sentence starter from the box they pointed to at the beginning.
6. I listen and smile at their deep conversations!

2. We FINALLY had snowman snow this week! I've been waiting to have my daughter build a snowman since she was born and it finally happened! Look at the cuteness:

3. I Updated my Mystery Prizes: I stopped doing the scratch-off stickers and instead just used regular dollar store stickers. My students would always just peel off the scratch-off sticker anyway. I love the mystery prizes because they're free and easy and my students love them because they're exciting! Also, I told my students that some of the prizes are just a picture of my face under the sticker, so there's also an element of dread as well. (Cue evil laughter.)

4. Last week was the one year anniversary of my room burning down. It came and went without a hitch! 
This was a year ago?!

5. Last week I kept wondering as I looked at my beautiful classroom: if ME from the day before the fire traveled to my current classroom, would I even notice that things were different? I think I would. And here's why: 
  • My classroom library is gorgeous. It is full of all new books that are engaging and sparkling and beautiful. My kids love the selection in their library. Here is a direct quote from one of my students. He was asked to reflect on his favorite thing about fixth grade so far for the upcoming conferences and this is what he said: "Well, let's start with how interesting and amazing the assigned books are! What's not to like about this wonderful classroom? Especially the small library in the class."  This made my heart so happy! I worked exceedingly hard on making sure we had an awesome library and SOMEBODY NOTICED!! :)
  •  I have lots of super-useful stuff and very little clutter. When you're a new teacher, you don't really know what will be the most helpful items to have in your room- so you buy what you think looks fun and interesting. I had the unique experience of being able to buy everything after gaining four years of experience.

  • My chairs. Are awesome. We got these chairs through a funded Donors Choose project and we love them!
  • Everything is just brighter and shinier, and newer! I teach in a portable classroom that had not been updated or refreshed in decades. Now my room is the brightest and newest in the building!
So in honor of the one-year anniversary of rebuilding my classroom, I would like to thank everyone again who bent over backwards to help me out.

I'd also like to have a giveaway to give back. Enter below to win a $20 gift card to one of the stores of your choice: Target, Scholastic Book Clubs, Amazon, Donors Choose, or another store of your choice! Enter below- the giveaway will end next Saturday! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for stopping by and have a lovely week! Remember to hop over to Doodle Bug's teaching to check out other Five for Friday posts!



  1. I love how you were able to recover from that fire in your classroom, cheers to you!

  2. I love the "new" room. Is it still considered new once it feels like home? I love that you want to celebrate by making others feel better with a gift card. Maybe a shopping trip to Target for some dollar spot finds, or money to go towards my Donors Choose project would make my day. Thanks for the opportunity!

  3. Wow! What an accomplishment from the before to the after of your classroom. I would definitely choose Amazon. That way I could buy some books to replace the ones that I had that were ruined from a roof leak. (It was not anything like your loss.) But, it is hard to read books with crinkled pages that are stuck together! :)

  4. Hi! I would love to get the DonorsChoose gift card. I have a project for Body Sox that I would apply it to, so we can get them before our spring talent show. This would really help. I'm excited to follow you on pinterest, and I'm going to look you up on Instagram.

  5. I am glad I found this! I LOVE reading blogs. I learn so much from them. I enjoy sharing and using the ideas I find embedded in them. Most importantly the children benefit from what I take away from them. Glad to be here!

    1. I jumped the gun I was so excited to read your blog that I forgot to comment about what I would like as my prize. I would prefer a DC donation as I am always eager to get my projects funded and share the news with them.

  6. Nice classroom! Donorschoose gift card

  7. I would choose a Donors Choose gift card of course! Getting my students the supplies they need is one of my top priorities. :)

  8. I love your recovery!!! A DC card would be such a big help to my students and me to go towards one of our projects.

  9. I would love the Donors Choose gift card so I could give it to Melissa for the project.

  10. My choice would be a DonorsChoose Gift Card. DC has helped me bring some wonderful materials to my classroom. Also, I enjoy the opportunity of helping other teachers on DC with their projects.

  11. Love your say something card! I'll try it with my little ones. A Donors Choose Gift Card.

  12. Love your say something card! I'll try it with my little ones. A Donors Choose Gift Card.

  13. Your room looks great! The card is something I will share with my coworkers.

  14. I would pick DonorsChoose. I would use it for a project on my giving page - Kindergarten Rocks!

  15. I'm adapting your "Say Something" card for my Kindergarten students. I would use a DC gift card to help a fellow teacher with her first DC project.

  16. I would love the Donors Choose gift card for my classroom project:

  17. I would LOVE a donorschoose card to help beat the red clock on my project! We are asking for online subscription to Raz-kids and A-Z reading. These sites will give my early readers so many more books to choose from on their level!

  18. Of course, I just checked out your TN store link. I've never seen TN prior to this. Do they have gift cards to their store? Thanks.

  19. If some one wanna see what is turn around he/she should see this blog or the pictures of the class room before and after
    scratch off poster

  20. Can you tell us where you got those cool chairs?