Sunday, September 27, 2015

More space, mentoring, and PJ day

We are still working on Space, but this is the last week. 

Our OT does a group a week, and she does this book where they have to color, cut and glue. 
I love them so much I decided to make my own according to my theme.
I am not having them clue, as we glue at least 4 of the 5 school days.
but we are following the direction as we read the book, example Saturn is yellow and orange. 
So we are working on:
reading and following directions
fine motor skills - coloring
color identification
fine motor - cutting
number identification - putting together the page numbers (they are numbered)
They came out pretty cute!!

We made our names with rockets and worked on;
fine motor - writing letters 
and identifying our names
I love how they came out

Here is what the Space Book looks like.

We were short staffed this week and we had picture day, so our center time was cut short or we did not even do centers. Things happens. You have to just rolllllllll with it. 

This week we will also be short staffed four days and we will be having students from Mission College doing observations three days a week. I would lie if I said I wasn't stressed out. I. AM. but this week will not be as busy as last week so I ma looking forward to coming home after school at least 4 out of the 5 days!! 

I am excited that I am mentoring two wonderful ladies this year. I am mentoring one of my aids as she is getting a classroom aid certificate, she is so good and I am very excited to see her grow professionally. I am also mentoring one of the ECSE teacher that is an intern, I am really excited to be able to help her and be here fr whatever she needs. I had such an awesome master teacher and I am happy to have the chance to give back, I am hoping I can be at least half as good as Julie was. 

Last week we also had our first Spirit day, which was a PJ day. I have the BEST parent, all my kiddos came in PJs and my staff as well. And we WAN!!!!!! Well we actually tied with a kinder class, lol so much fun. We get to host Joe the Mustang for two week!!

Here he is! 

Have a great week everyone!!!

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Space theme.....and some other things.

Space Theme 
We started the Space theme at the start of September.
We have being working on shapes, numbers, cutting, tracing, identifying out names, working on colors, attending, transitioning, etc. 
I don't do the Space theme every year, but it is always fun when we do. 

In the next few weeks we will be doing rocket names, R is for rocket, star puzzles, stars, a space theme book, and name more activities. 

October will be Farm and November will be Fall.

This year I am attending a year long Language Development training called SEAL. It pretty much teaches a model on how to promote language throughout the day and throughout a whole theme. I feel that as SDC preschool teachers we do this but I also realized that there are other areas that I need to work on like dramatic play, and writing skills (or coloring and drawing in my case) I am looking forward to what I will learn and how I can implement new techniques with my little kids.

I also attend a DRDP training. If you teach preschool you know that us special ed teachers and the state general education preschools fill out different DRDPs. So now they are all the same. It appears to look harder but it is not. some things that have changed. We are now to go from right to left and a student can master a higher level skill without having to master a lower level skill. There are some other wording like and, or and ; and. which mean - and the child need to do both time during the same activity, or the students can do one or the other, and ; and the child needs to show mastery in both but not during the same activity. The awesome part was the it was not a how to fill the DRDP training, it was haw to train others to do fill the DRDPs so it is awesome. i do not know who volunteered me, and at first I was like "WHAT!!!" but it was not bad, I learned a lot and is something to add to my resume (not like I am planning to change jobs, I LOVE where I work, but I would like to start teaching college maybe in summer good to have, right). Anyway, if you guys need help hit me up, I would love to help you!!!

Monday, September 14, 2015

All About me and back to School..

I stated the school year with a Welcome Back to School and All About me theme. 

We made:

buses - sang the wheels on the bus, talked about the color, the wheels, who goes home on the bus, how many windows.

We made pencils and practice writing/tracing our names.

We practice brushing teeth (with a paper plate, a toothbrush, and tooth paste) and counted how many teeth we have. 

We made a paper bag kid - week long project, choosing paint, folding the arms and legs, how many hands and feet do we have, crumbling paper to fill it up, and putting it all together. 

We made portraits of our self with paper plates, we all look different but we are all the same. 

We also practice pre-academic lines, cutting, tracing, sorting matching, following directions, playing games, dress up, sensory materials, reading stories, etc...

We had Back to School night. 
I set up just like last year. 
Popcorn and sign in.
Then the tables with signs of what we do and some examples of what we may use at that table. 

Monica and I decorated out doors and hallway a few weeks ago. This is it for the whole year. I will not be changing the doors according to theme. As much as I love the doors decorated, it really takes a long time, and I promised myself I was NOT going to go into work during the weekends this year. 

We have now started with new theme, Space. I am planning to keep this blog up to date and not take so long to write blogs. I think we are now used to our new routine with the boys going to school with me.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Teacher essentials

I have gotten a few questions about teacher essentials, from shoes, to clothing, to bags, tech, etc. So I thought I would write a quick blog about it.

Shoes - I love TOMS, they are super comfy and flats. I like the flats from the GAP they are actually pretty soft and comfy and they look great with everything. Boots for the cold weather are great. I do not wear sandals often. 

Clothing - During the warm weather I try to wear dresses and skirts and capri jeans (but not too often)  Once it gets colder then I like to wear dress pants and thighs with my dress, cardigans, and coats. Scarfs are GREAT.  A professor once said "Dress the way you want to be treated. Imagine a lawyer wearing leggings and how serious you would take them". I do wear jeans but try not to do it too often. And i do not wear leggings or sweats, not professional for a teacher. 

Teach - 
iPads, they can hold the classroom music, interactive stories, and apps to support your teaching. Use it as an educational tool not as a toy.

 Personal laminating machine, yes the big ones are great for big projects, but icons, pictures, and any little things can be laminated with one of these and way quicker to warm up than the big office ones.

Laptop - any brand really. This was if you want to work at home, lets face it we do A LOT of work from home. You don't have to access IEP web pages thru your personal laptop. Always be in the safe side. 

Bags - 
Small pencil bag with pens, whiteout, post its, USB drives, etc... this is great for when you go to meetings, or are some where other than your class.

Laptop case. This one is from Target from like 10 years ago and it still works great. It fits in my work bag and I don't have to hold it in my hand. 

Work bag - Also from Target, is actually a yoga bag  from Orla Kiely, but it fits everything I need. Laptop, teacher planner, personal planner, wallet, pencil bag, list journal, candy snack, tech devises. 
I have also seen many many teachers used the Orla Kiely diaper bag, also from Target. Now I have looked at it many times and as much as I love it, I just couldn't get my self to buy a maternity bag. So instead I got a small weekender bag (from target gray/silver with light brown leather). I am going to try it tomorrow if it works for what I need I will keep it other wise I will keep looking. I am actually looking for a bag to carry all my stuff including a Longchamp small bag folded, then I don't have to carry two bags, as it seems I have more stuff to carry than when I started writing this blog. I will keep you all posted. 

I love little pouches and this one hold the iPad charges, which is also my iphone charger. I have another two at work but I always carry one with me you never know when you will need to charge your phone or the iPad.

Other things -

Head phones, mints, and business cards.
Headphones - there are times you will want some piece and quite once the kiddos are gone and you are doing computer work.
Mints - when we meet with parents, we don't want everyone to smell what we had for lunch.
Business cards-  they are just so cool to have lol but it a great way to pass your information and it looks professional.

Accordion folder form the dollar spot at Target - now this is perfect for when you take things home, you can separate them in order of importance or parts, and it prevents you from loosing things in your bag.

Thank you cards - you are going to get donations, gifts throughout the year, cards, complements, etc. Get some cute thank you cards and keep them handy. We started work 8/13 this year and I am so lucky to have so many wonderful patents, I already used two packs of thank you cards. As a parent, I like getting them from the boys teacher because I see how excited the boys get that our donations helped the class. 

Notepads- lets be honest we all have to write stuff, from to do list, to things parents ask for, to memos for things to do or things to buy or things not to forget. So get some cute post its/notepads. I recommend the Target dollar spot ones, always cute, always a dollar.

Planner - The Erin Condren teacher planner is the BEST planner for any teacher. There are plenty of pages I do not use the way they are lay out but I make them personalized for me and my teaching (I teach special ed preschool). I have used many different teacher planner and by far this one is worth every penny. You can check a couple of posts back to see how I organized those pages.

Hope this helps some of you.
Have a fantastic school year!!!