Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Lesson Demonstration Staples

Now that I am graduating (TOMORROW!), I have been glued to the teacher job posting websites.  I have been to a few interviews, and even been asked back to do lesson demonstrations in a classroom, with real students!

First of all, this book is amazing:

It has great questions and practice answers for interviews.  I have not yet been asked a question that was NOT in this book.  It's $9.95 on amazon and $12 at Barnes & Noble if you need it right away.

When I was asked to present a lesson after the interview, at first I didn't know what to do.  It's an odd idea, going in to a random classroom and teaching students you don't know for 20 minutes.  With some help from my mom, I put together a bag of stuff that I would be able to use for any demos I would have to do:

1. Name tags
These are helpful to learn the students' names.  It shows the administrators and observers that you care about the students, not just about your lesson.  In the corner of each tag, I put a number so that I could use Opportunity Sticks, my item #2!

2. Opportunity Sticks
Opportunity sticks, if not in your normal classroom management plan, are great for choosing students to respond.  It is random and allows all students to share!  By numbering them, you can use them in every interview and then in your classroom after you blow the observers away and get offered the job ;)

3. Stickers

4. Thank you cards
It's polite to send a thank you card to the teacher who let you borrow his or her students, and also to the students who were so good for you!  Hopefully you will have already sent a thank you to the administrators and interviewers after the interview :)

5. Extra lesson plans and materials
I brought 5 extra sets of lesson plans and student materials to each lesson demonstration, one for each of the observers.  This makes it easy for them to follow along and shows them that you know what you need to do while teaching.  Just think of them as your supervisor during student teaching!

I will keep updating as I keep interviewing, but hopefully I will be hired soon!  It's an exciting time!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

What. A. Year.

What a crazy year it has been...

Well, I guess it hasn't technically been a year.  It's been 9 months, but that's a year for teachers.  I finished my student teaching and am not ready to be a real teacher!  I know that all the insane work I have done and tests I have taken will be worth it soon.

For our last day with our kids, my partner and I made little baggies.  Student teaching doesn't pay, so we had to make it simple, but they turned out so cute!

This year has taught me so much.  I learned a lot from both of my master teachers and know that I will use what they taught me in my own classroom someday.

I am thankful also to all of the teaching blogs out there that inspire me every day.  I have downloaded countless free activities to use (and will buy even more once I start being paid...!) and can't wait to begin making my own.  Bloggers, you are all wonderful master teachers, and if you are not officially one, you should sign up!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Classrooms of the Future


Do you want to provide feedback about how technology SHOULD BE USED in your classroom?

I know, this is a crazy, revolutionary idea: Asking teachers what they want.

Well, my friend is doing his senior thesis for his degree in Industrial Design and needs our input.  Please take a minute and fill out his survey.  You can check out his website, Classroom of the Future, here.

Thank you, and happy Wednesday!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Student Teaching Budget

Student teaching = no money.

That means I scour freebies on TPT and teaching blogs to find things I can use in my classroom.  Here's the latest- a giveaway from The Busy Busy Hive!  Check out her blog and see all the cute things she has.  Even though she teaches first graders, I still can use some of her freebies for spiral review!

On another note, I ran my first 10k yesterday.  That's 6 whole miles!  I'm proud of myself and my continuing growth in this area of my life.  Health and fitness is a part of my life that I am currently working on.  Amazingly, the progression I am going through is almost mirrored in this blog post by Leo Babauta over at his blog, Zen Habits (all except for the smoking part).  He describes this "lifestyle change" perfectly.  Keep growing!

Channel this for the next few days.  Really love this right now.

Have a great week, friends!

Monday, February 11, 2013

P[w]inning: Conj"egg"ators

Teaching in Spanish is a whole different ball game.  Well, kind of, but not really; kids have problems with spelling, but they are just different.  I have noticed, as I blogged about before, that my students obviously know how to conjugate verbs, but their spelling is not great.  One thing I made for them was a flash card game, which I wrote about here.

I saw these on pinterest and was inspired to help my kiddies using the same idea...

Ta-da!  Conj"egg"ators!

I made them in the present and past tenses.  Soon, I will make the imperfect, when all the kids get to that reading level.  The infinitive is on the top, and the kids spin around the egg to match the beginning letter with the rest of the word.

My plan is to have them in a bag as a "done" or "may-do" activity.

Let me know if you have any more ideas... maybe how to keep the sharpie from rubbing off!!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

P[w]inning: Conjugation Flashcards and Kaboom!

I've been on the lookout for good activities to help our second graders with their Spanish spelling.  I started with conjugation sheets, but those are only entertaining for so long!  With some help from Second Grade Sparkle, I was directed to B is for Bilingual, where she had some conjugation flash cards.

My kids love to play flash card games with each other, so I decided to make some flash cards with words that they need to focus on.  I know they can conjugate; the spelling is what is hard for them.  I believe that the more experience they have with the correct spelling of words, the better! 

I separated them by verb into stacks, and they have a blast competing to get the card.  Both the present and preterit are included in this stack.  Only some are ready for the imperfect!  To win the card from their partner, they must include the "person" that the conjugated verb belongs to ("Yo como," "Nosotros bailamos").

These were really easy to make.  I just made a table in Microsoft Word, wrote the verbs I wanted, and copied and pasted them until I had enough pages for each form I wanted to conjugate.  Miss Rivera from B is for Bilingualhas some decorated ones in her TPT store that are really cute!

In other news, last week my student teaching partner and I glued a whole bunch of plastic coins on tongue depressors for "Kaboom!"  I found it on pinterest, and we decided to try it.  We introduced it to the kids today, and they loved it!  It was hard for them to count that high at first, but they caught on.

My favorite part of the game was when one girl didn't want to pull a stick because there were only Kaboom sticks left.  One boy said to her, "It's just a game!  It's not real money and we can play again!" ♥

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Bilingual Resources

Story of the Day:
My kids think I am hilarious... they laugh at all my jokes.  All the time.  It's such a self-esteem boost!  Also, they think I am a fantastic artist.  This was what they were judging my skills with:

Self esteem boost?  Yes!

This semester, I am student teaching in a bilingual classroom.  As it turns out, not many bloggers are bilingual bloggers.  I need ideas for a bilingual classroom with language arts, especially spelling and writing programs.  It's not as simple as translating everything.  If anyone could give any suggestions or point me in the right direction, I would appreciate it!

On another note, here is where I had lunch the other day:

Pepperdine University in Malibu