SUCCESSFUL SNOW DAY SUGGESTIONS!

It’s a snowy day here in NY and the schools are closed wooohooo! Looking for something fun to do? Here are five fun ideas to try on this blistering day…

  1. Try a read aloud of The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats. The snow is falling and this book will keep your little ones entertained as they check out this animated tale. http://www.ezra-jack-keats.org/read-aloud/the-snowy-day/’ Prefer a hard copy for the next snow day? Grab one here!
  2. Use this snow day calculator to predict if you will be off any more days this school year:¬†https://www.snowdaycalculator.com/calculator.php (I’m guessing NO! If you are in NYC ūüôā )
  3. Make snow angels inside or outside to Music for Aardvarks & Other Mammals – Blanket of Snow song. Watch the snow come tumbling down outside your window and sing along to this cute tune. Here’s a rendition by a local artist Jams with Janet if you don’t have spotify:¬†https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQoCx8WUCBAWant the whole album? (I’m obsessed!) Get it here!
  4. Check out a local museum or childrens coffee spot. Those tend to be open on Snow Days to keep your kids entertained! I like the American Museum of Natural History

    www.amnh.org/ or The Childrens Museum of Manhattan/ Brooklyn/ Staten Island (for you NYers) http://cmom.org/.

     

  5. Go sledding!!! Grab a tray or a sled and head out to the closest hill and enjoy the fluffy white snow. Let us know what you are up to this perfect snow day! I’m about to warm up some hot cocoa, make some pancakes and play some board games!

Wingding – Dong!

I LOVE the Wingdings font! It is such fun and you probably already own it!  It comes free with Microsoft Office, so give it a try!  Select Wingdings in the font box when you are in Word or PowerPoint and starting typing to see all the cool possibilities.

Check out the video below from the PowerPoint gurus over at Nuts and Bolts Speed Training to see how easy it is to create icons for all your presentations and handouts!

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Teaching is in our soles (of our shoes!)

soles-of-our-shoesTOP 5 TEACHER SHOE IDEAS

EQUIP YOUR FEET TO ENSURE TOP PERFORMANCE WITH TOP COMFORT!

I decided I needed to do a little shoe shopping over the Christmas break because my feet were KILLING me in December from all that standing and walking around while teaching. ¬†My feet feel much better in this New Year. Don’t suffer with sore feet anymore in the classroom!

Here are my Top 5 Shoes for Teachers:

5. Cheetah Ballerina Flats

I always like to wear a cute pair of shoes on the first day of school. But by the end of the month I am all about comfort! This is where my ballerina flats come into play.

Coming in 5th place cheetah ballerina flats. You can find them in any shape or style and I they go with EVERYTHING not to mention are very comfortable. I like to give a little flair to my accessories so I love these¬†Cheetah print flats.¬†Very easy to slip on and off and provide support to my achy feet! There are two different price variations I have provided based on your budget! Cheap ¬†as in $12 cheap… vs. More Expensive.

 vs. more expensive  

4. Classic Cognac Loafers for the Fellas

Fellas I didn’t forget about you. Classic¬†Cognac Shoes. Perfect coupled with that gingham button down, a sweater and jeans. Light on your feet and comfortable. My husband walked by as I was writing this post and asked me to send him a link to buy these shoes. Trust me!



3. Elevate your teaching with a Pump

Sometimes aka parent teacher conferences, us teachers have to step up our game. This is when I switch over to a comfortable dress pump. Anne Klein is my go-to for all my “pump” related shoe needs. I have worn these to teach in, as a wedding attendee and for the holidays. I like a basic black or a nude or ¬†black and white checkered¬†pump.

 

  

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year!

I have been shopping NON stop for family & friends this holiday season, and my family members have started asking me what I want for the holidays? Well, they obviously did not read my post on¬†Gifts for GRAND teachers!¬†ūüėČ So… I’ve decided to edit my list and add a few goodies that I am craving for my December break! Here’s my gift list:

BOOKS

I love spending my December break curled up with a good book. This season I’ve got a few book ideas on my list:

1.¬†I wish my teacher knew…

One day, third-grade teacher Kyle Schwartz asked her students to fill‚Äďin‚Äďthe‚Äďblank in this sentence: ‚ÄúI wish my teacher
knew _____.‚ÄĚ The results astounded her. Some answers were humorous, others were heartbreaking‚Äďall were profoundly moving and enlightening. The results opened her eyes to the need for educators to understand the unique realities their students face in order to create an open, safe and supportive place in the classroom.

2. ¬†Mindful Teaching and Teaching Mindfulness: A Guide for Anyone Who Teaches Anything¬†–

“Author Deborah Schoeberlein pioneers the practical application of mindfulness in education.The book follows a teacher from morning to night on a typical school day, at home, during the commute, and before, during, and after class. This book is perfect for teachers of all kinds: schoolteachers, religious educators, coaches, parents-anyone who teaches anything.”

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Use an avatar in the classroom and for Parent Teacher Conferences!

Ever since the movie Avatar came out I have loved weaving speaking characters into my classroom. Not only is it fun to watch for students (and parents) of all ages, but students get a kick out of seeing the characters on the screen. You can create your character and add a voice to it so it can speak. You can change the backgrounds as well. Here are four ways I use avatars in my classroom:

  1. Have students make historical avatars. They can  type text to each other on the computer that would be appropriate for the historical period.
  2. Make an avatar of yourself (the teacher). Leave it up on the classroom smartboard. Hit a button that has pre-programmed sayings for when you see students are off task during groupwork.
  3. Use avatars during parent teacher conferences. Have it up on the smart board or in the waiting room for parents once they arrive.
  4. Use avatars during college conferences. I have created an avatar to emulate a student so I could walk through the college admissions process for a parents evening.

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The Great Pumpkin Challenge

the

One more day until¬†October! The month of Pumpkin Spiced Lattes, Apple Picking and my favorite THE GREAT PUMPKIN CHALLENGE! My students know how much I love food challenges (see my posts on¬†The Great Cookie Challenge!,¬†The GREAT ‚ÄúHOLIDAY‚ÄĚ Baking Challenge!¬†and I’ll share my Food Network Challenge with you in a couple of weeks). So OF COURSE I always do a GREAT PUMPKIN CHALLENGE!

If you have a google classroom make sure to get our great october headers!
See them here:
Halloween Background
October Themed Headers

The lesson rules are simple:

I like to do this in groups of 2-3 students. Each group should Bring in a pumpkin OR a pumpkin dessert (that no one in the class will be allergic to – baked at home). So… a¬†regular ole pumpkin to decorate, a pumpkin spice cupcake, pumpkin bar, pumpkin gingerbread cookie, pumpkin¬†donut, pumplin pie whatever floats your boat. In class ‚Äď studnents¬†will be decorating it with a historical event from THIS SEMESTER. You can have it be holiday specific, (Martin Luther King Day, Columbus Day, Christmas, Chanukah) or a historical event. The class judges each creation and at the end of course they eat the pumpkin or pumpkin food.¬†Let me know how your great pumpkin challenge goes!

Find the Perfect Match (for College)

nofiredrills.com/blog

Love comes in many forms. But finding the right match for college well… there’s no dating “app” for that. (Yet! I suppose ūüôā ) So what does that mean for teachers, parents and students who are ready to make their college “lists”? Well… (like dating) you will have to dedicate quite a bit of time to finding the right college. Here are some tips to get you started!

  1. Think broadly. Do you want to stay close to home (and live at home) or are you okay with travel (car, bus, train, plane?). If you are willing to go 8 hours north you should be willing to go 8 hours west, east and south.
  2. Once you have made a decision on location, start to do your research. Check out these websites for help on ¬†finding a college based on “I know what I want”, “I am not sure where to start”
     РCollege Board Website
    Р College Confidential

    –¬†Forbes College Quiz
    –¬†College Match Quiz
  3. Take a campus tour once you have narrowed down your choice. See if you can stay overnight with a student many colleges have a program set up for you to see what its like.
  4. Research Campus Safety.
  5. If money is an issue check out my post on finding scholarships. Start early!
  6. Don’t forget to ask your teachers for college recommendations. You will need at least two. Try to ask them as junior year is concluding so you are locked in for the fall. Teachers need tips on writing a college rec – here are some sample letters!
  7. Say thank you to all those who are helping you along your journey! But remember…
    The path to true love never does run smoothly. So don’t be afraid to transfer colleges if that first match wasn’t a right fit for you!

Speed Networking in the Classroom

 

It can be daunting to try out a new teaching method, but TRUST ME, this one is A HUGE hit! I’m writing an extension to my post on¬†History‚Äôs Great Mystery (How can I make my classroom more interactive?!)¬†and¬†Why I put the SOCIAL back into SOCIAL STUDIES!¬†so you can try out this awesome technique in your classroom.¬†This lesson can be modified for primary/middle school and high school.

I like doing this lesson for a number of reasons.
One –¬† This lesson give students practical, real world experience. The students are required to practice their interviewing skills on their peers as they bring a business card, a name tent and a resume with them of their historical figure (on the high school level). See below I modify this for the younger grades. ¬†This gets my students thinking about creating their own resumes and business cards and career prospects.

Each resume and must include the following: Name, birth date, education, background, known associations (with a definition), notable accomplishments, and 3 references. Each resume must also have a ‚Äújob sought‚ÄĚ paragraph at the top. This must be between 3-6 sentences long and should include long term goals and other pertinent information. I have students bring a resume which should¬†also include a picture. I require that these must be typed (you need two copies ‚Äď one for you and one for me!) . You should¬†have students work on this in groups if they are each assigned the same character.¬†

Two – I require each student to shake hands with the person as they move around the table. I give them a quick “this is how to do a proper handshake” and “smile nicely” when I hand out the instructions and again before the activity begins. This requires they practice their social skills.

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