Sunday, December 30, 2012

Maternity Leave and a Focus Wall

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year to all! I have been enjoying my time off from school and getting a chance to relax, sleep in and visit with family.  With a week left of break I have found myself thinking about school. With only about 3 months left until I get to meet baby Lily, I have been making mental lists of everything I need to get done before I go on maternity leave. I keep telling myself that I still have time to get everything done and then I run though my list and it freaks me out a little bit. Here is the list that I have running through my head about what I need to get done before leaving my little ones with the substitute. 

               1. Map out the last two months of school
2. Clean and organize my room
3. Plan the end of the year party for the kiddos
4. Create my Focus Wall
5. Create everything needed for the focus Wall
6. Write out rough lesson plans for the time I am gone
7. Find or create any resources needed for the time I am gone. 

Here is what I have so far. I am sure there a lot more things I should be thinking about. I would love some ideas and advice on how to prepare for Maternity leave. This is my first child so I am pretty clueless on what needs to be in place and how much I can place on the shoulders of the person who will be taking over for me for the last two months of school. 

One thing that I know I want to get going as soon as break is over is redoing my Focus Wall. I have a large bulletin board near my reading table that is meant to showcase what is being currently taught in science, social studies, math and reading. This I have to say has fallen by the wayside. I have been looking at Focus Walls all day today and I have found a few that I am going to use as inspiration for my wall. I am going to start by making it a Literacy Focus Wall only! I plan on using it to display the current spelling words, vocabulary words, reading skill, writing skill, and the grammar. With this being said here are a few examples I have found. I will do my best to give credit to the correct person but all I did was Google focus walls so I am not sure if the links take me to the person who created the wall or not. 

I found this on 2nd Grade Stuff Blog

I found these on Mrs. Freshwater's Class    


I would love to hear if you have a focus wall and what you include on yours. Leave a link to your blog if you have a posting about Focus Walls. Again I would love input on getting this up and running in my classroom!!!

Enjoy the rest of your break and be safe tomorrow night!!!


Monday, December 3, 2012

Animal Groups

I am back with an update! I am in my 5th month of pregnancy and feeling so much better. I am feeling more like myself each day. I have been able to get back to a normal eating pattern and taking less naps. I am excited that I have the energy to start teaching and planning like I normally do.

If you have read my last post then you  know that I have been reviewing products for Creative Teaching. I have finished reviewing my 2nd product. This product is the Animal Group Mini Bulletin Board Set. Like the Plant on it could be used in many different ways. I used it both as a bulletin board in my classroom while teaching the topic. I also have plans on pulling it back out to use as a review center towards the end of the year.

I was truly pleased with this product and every other product that I have purchased from Creative Teaching. I would highly recommend using them from anything from boarders and posters to these bulletin board sets.

Keep your eye out for a giveaway soon! I am hoping to get a new product done shortly so that it can be added to the giveaway. Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. 3  more weeks and then it is Christmas Break....I need it!!!!