The Terrific Teacher Blogs Link Up Is OVER 145 Blogs! Is Your Blog Listed?

We have over 233 different teachers' blogs linked up at our joint "Terrific Teacher Blogs" link up. If you are looking for some new blogs to follow head on over there. I have it saved as a page at my "Mrs. Smith's Classroom" blog because it is sooooo big! :) While you are there, please feel free to link your blog too!
 I WOULD ♥LOVE♥  IT IF YOU WOULD FOLLOW 
ME ON MY BLOG
ON PINTEREST
Follow Me on Pinterest
ON TPT!
Pre-K, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, Adult Education, Homeschooler, Babies/Toddlers, Staff - For All Subject Areas, Math, Reading - TeachersPayTeachers.com
OR ON FACEBOOK!
  Thanks for stopping by! :)
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My Newest Classroom Folder Set ~ A Gator Beach Theme!

Now at TeachersPayTeachers and Teachers Notebook!
Each folder comes in all six colors/characters!

Homework Folder,   Reading Folder,   Math Folder
Science Folder,   Social Studies Folder,   Word Work Folder
Spelling Folder,   Vocabulary Folder,   Reading Group Folder
Language Arts Folder,   Take Home Folder,   Writing Folder
Phonics Folder,   Work Station Folder,   Center Folder

Use one space character for your high reading group. 
Use a different space character for your middle group, etc.
  
 
You can do the same with Math Stations, the mixing and matching is endless!
  * Helps the children learn organizational skills, no more papers shoved into their desks.
* Printed in both color and as a black and gray version to save you the cost of colored ink!
*Looks great if you print the black and gray version on colored paper!
 I WOULD ♥LOVE♥ IT IF YOU WOULD FOLLOW ME ON MY BLOG~
ON PINTEREST
Follow Me on Pinterest
ON TPT!
Pre-K, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, Adult Education, Homeschooler, Babies/Toddlers, Staff - For All Subject Areas, Math, Reading - TeachersPayTeachers.com 
& ON FACEBOOK!
  Thanks for stopping by! :)
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Germs, Germs, Germs...All Over Your Keyboard!


With cold and flu season upon us, have you cleaned your classroom computer keyboards lately? Find out why you should at Fern Smith's Classroom Ideas.


Yikes! 

Last Thursday I was getting ready for Summer Reading Camp and the news had a feature about all the germs on the mouse and keyboard of your work computer! In fact {hang on, this might kill ya'} they swabbed the keyboards at different companies and many public restrooms AND.....every single keyboard had more germs, than the restrooms. Serious germs, MANY germs, because, let's face it, we don't clean them everyday, the custodial staff doesn't clean them everyday, rarely do they get cleaned at all! 

Think about it, your friends sit down and type something to show you, you eat at it, you cough on it, you might stick your own personal kids at it when school is over, the variety of different people and different germs are endless! 

Everyday at 11:15 we have snack and watch two Tumblebook stores. I let the helper pick the two stories and run the computer, so their little snack hands are all over the keyboard and mouse too! 

With cold and flu season upon us, it is definitely time to MAKE TIME for those disinfectant wipes!
 


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How Did You Pick Your Room Theme?


This is a four foot by three foot latch hook rug my teen did one summer when she was 11 or 12. The picture doesn't make it look that big, but trust me, it is. Why do I mention why it is so big? Because when she finished it the wonderful hubby made the frame for her and those dolphins have moved, moved, moved with us ever since. First it was to match her blue and brown themed room, then after one of our Navy moves, it was relocated to her bathroom for a blue theme, then the next move it was changed over to her brother's bathroom. This last move out of the clear blue, it was no longer wanted, no longer "cool" and was headed for the trash! As she's walking out the door with it she says, "Oh, want this?" 
I ask you, how does a Mom say,  No??? 
All I could think was, "Hmmmmm, you worked all summer on that, we paid money to make a frame for you, we had to get rid of things to stay under the weight limit for our moves to keep that thing, but sure, I hate all your creative hard work, lets just throw it away!" 
Nope, I said, I love it, of course I want it! 
Now I am glad that I did. Many of my students don't do arts and crafts and many of them have never seen anything like this. The first thing they do is rub their hands all over those poor dolphins! They love how deep it goes and how thick it feels. 
Since they love it so much, I decided to stick it up and go with the beach theme. 
I ♥love Florida, I ♥love the water, the ocean, the breeze {the sand not so much!} so going with a beach theme was not too painful! The blues and blacks from the dolphins is what I used for the entire room.
So all this got me thinking, how did you pick your theme? Leave a message, leave a link, let the rest of us see a pretty picture of your theme, your room or even your future ideas from Pinterest! 

I would just ♥love it if 
you would follow me!
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Repurposing a Flower Pot as a Pencil & Pen Holder!

Pen & Pencil Holder!

My family {OK, not the 14 y/o boy} love going to garage sales & thrift shops. We don't have much time to do it, but the pretty weather is hitting Florida and the days get longer, woooohooo! So we'll be outside more.
This cute little flower pot my daughter got for 25 cents at the Salvation Army. We scrubbed it with hot water and then she put it on her desk in my new office to be a pen holder. It is perfect for Easter. I asked her, "What are you going to do after Easter?" She is going to turn it around and hide the bunny against the wall, then it will just be flowers!
Here is another one of my favorite REPURPOSING, my students this year actually stroke Mr. Turtle's head when they borrow a pen or an eraser out of it! :)
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Labeling My AR Books

Fern Smith's Classroom Ideas for using the AR Book Widget to level your elementary classroom library books! The AR Widget Code for your web site or blog is available for download on this post.
Labeling My AR Books
This blog post is not for those of you that are looking for a cute, artsy, adorable way to label your AR Books! Run now and run fast if you are looking for thematic, high graphic stickers! :)
So, I'm teasing you, but I've been around the block a time or two and let's face it, our classroom libraries will never look as adorable as what we see on OTHER TEACHER'S BLOGS!
Oh yeah, you know what I mean, some teachers have made entire Pinterest Boards with all sorts of cute "Teacher Library" pictures! But, I'm going to let you in on a secret, I bet their kids never get to use many of those classroom library books!
There Are Lovers of Books and 
There Are Keepers of Books.
I am a ♥lover♥ of books!
I have no desire to hoard books, or to be a "Keeper of Books." I want my students to love reading so much that they can't wait to get their hands on more and more books. I have left teaching a few times ~ twice to be a stay at home mom and once to go to real estate school {stop laughing!} and every time I leave I GIVE everything away ~ I know, DUH!! right?

So when I return to the classroom this year I had to start all over again. I've built a nice classroom library from garage sales and the Friends of the Library big sales. But this year I only taught Math and Science, so I didn't really need to spend time organizing the library. The books were just hanging out for the children who came to school early, while I watched them for morning duty.
I DO NOT do any difficult check out system for my library. 
Check out systems usually just exhaust the teachers and cause them more unneeded stress! :( If a book is too expensive, don't put it in your library.

I let every child take 2 books home each night. I tell them, over and over again, "I trust you. Just tell me the truth if something happens to it." It helps to build a relationship between myself and the child, especially at lower income schools where many of them don't have a lot of trust in their lives anyway. I might have lost a book or two over the years, but if their lives are that sad that they need to steal my book, their lives are that sad that they are welcome to keep my book! That's why I get my books for a quarter to a dollar at the sales, nothing too expense that I will be upset if they don't return it! :)
This next school year we are going to be self-contained again and I will be teaching Reading again, which I love!
So everyday after summer school I've been organizing my library to get ready. 
Here is how I label my books ~
I write my name, the AR level and the test number in Sharpie Marker on the front.
Fern Smith's Classroom Ideas for using the AR Book Widget to level your elementary classroom library books! The AR Widget Code for your web site or blog is available for download on this post.
  There are a few reasons why I do this ~
1. Marker, unlike labels, can't be pulled off by a student. If they leave it in the Computer Lab or cafeteria, "Smith" gets it returned to my class or mailbox.
2. When a child takes an AR quiz, sometimes it takes them the entire Daily Five Center time to find the quiz if they are typing the title incorrectly. I teach them just to type in the test number.
In this picture, which shows off my amazing photography skills, it would be 11506 and the top picture would be 87265. The students can type the number in fast and usually leaves less room for a mistake.
3. They can immediately know if it is their level. There is no color chart that they have to match with a sticker on the cover. There is no need to open the book to figure it out. They can also file the book away quickly when they are done by reading level because it is right on the front.
4. Student helpers can also clean up and organize the library quickly with the number right on the front! 

 On my class web site I have the AR BookFinder Widget so I can find the information out quickly about a new book I bring to the classroom.
 Here is what it looks like...
Fern Smith's Classroom Ideas for using the AR Book Widget to level your elementary classroom library books! The AR Widget Code for your web site or blog is available for download on this post.
 And here is the code if you would like to put it on your site.

I also like this because the parents and students can use it at home to find a book level!
This is what the results look like...
Fern Smith's Classroom Ideas for using the AR Book Widget to level your elementary classroom library books! The AR Widget Code for your web site or blog is available for download on this post.
 If it is not an AR book, here is another site that will help you will leveling books.
Fern Smith's Classroom Ideas for using the AR Book Widget to level your elementary classroom library books! The AR Widget Code for your web site or blog is available for download on this post.
 Book Wizard
So if you are organizing your books this summer,
I hope a little of this info might have helped! :)
If you haven't read it yet, here is how I organize my read alouds!


I would just ♥love it if 
you would follow me!
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