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Monday Made It - 2017!

Have I actually taught an entire YEAR? This year blew by quickly! It was my first year at a new school and I loved it. Actually, it was harder than any of my past 30 years, but a great school. I am still getting use to the longer hours and commute. However, the school does a great job with excellence in the classroom, PBIS, PLN, collaboration, etc. 

I've participated with Monday Made It now for 3? 4? years. I have always LOVED all the inspiration given to me by others!

My students had a hard time with organization and heavy backpacks this past year. We were on the 3rd floor and students had to take the stairs. After the first few weeks of school, I had numerous complaints from parents about the heavy backpacks and a lack of classroom space. As a 6th grade teacher, my students are only in my room for ELA and Social Studies so they do not have their own desk space. They also do not have lockers. So, I allowed them to keep their curriculum on a designated shelf. My one condition - it had to be kept neat or they couldn't use it. With about 2 months left of school, I had to take the shelf away. Students simply could not follow my neatness guidelines.

This year I decided to make "crates" to store materials. I figured at the very least their mess would not be as exposed and I could look at the shelves easier. Too much mess makes me anxious! I also started a Donor's Choose for some organizational materials. 

I found crates for a great price at JoAnn's Fabrics - $8 a crate! All it took was one coat of stain and - beauty!

Sorry, I deleted my "before" pictures without thinking about Monday Made It! I promise - I will remember next time.

I love my Cricut and started creating new stickers for next year. I had to move classrooms and take down all my darling vinyls from last year's whiteboard. They cleaned off easily (YES!).  Thankfully, I saved the templates so all I did is recut a few of them. One I created new for this year. 

I started with a phrase I wanted up daily. Then I used the Typography app to type it up. I saved it as a .jpg.  

Next, I uploaded it to my Cricut software and cut it out of removable vinyl for use on the whiteboard. It will stay up all year - but peel off if I need to move rooms again! Since I am at home, I can't show it to you up yet, but here it is cut...

I am not changing my classroom theme TOO much this year. However, I am going to go with more of a "Farmhouse" theme and try to do away with a little of the bright blue. (Except my book bins are still blue and will probably just keep them that way.)

I always seem to make a new banner and this coming year is no exception. This banner is darling and I am loving how it is turning out! I used PowerPoint, created rectangles and added a triangle for the banner shape. Then I filled in the shape with a wood pattern. I added a circle and the font. Then I topped it off with a vine clip art. Love! I used my home laminator to finish them off. 

2016-2017 Classroom Reveal!

I am sharing with you my classroom reveal... with a little trepidation. Don't get me wrong - I LOVE my classroom. It's spacious, clean, up-to-date, and beautiful. The hardest part for me was taking pictures!! I have one wall on the third floor with a beautiful view. The problem is - it is hard to take pictures in their without everything looking too dark or washed out. The lighting is pretty naturally, but just doesn't photograph well. So, I ended up scrapping many pictures simply because I couldn't get the lighting right. 

Okay, on to my pictures!

Here it is before any work...

Nice view, right?!

I love this wood paper. I bought it from Amazon.

This is my growth mindset bulletin board. It is up by my small group area. The white pieces are whiteboard circle stickers and whiteboard tape! I will let students write on them and they should erase easily.

This is by my desk. I need to add some more family pictures - still working on that!

My desk area is a little unimpressive. I just didn't have the energy to put too much into it!

This is at the back of the room. It has my new light and community supplies plus the Instagram writing board. I'm not sure what I will put on the other board yet. 

I do like the VIP table! I bought a Buddha board for drawing and a box of supplies that my son was throwing out. I grabbed it and painted it black. I need to add a few more fun supplies. Any ideas?

I had to keep my same colors as I have used in the past simply because I didn't want to buy new book bins. Next year I may need to switch it up! (Spray paint, maybe? Have you sprayed this type of plastic before? Does it stick?)

How do I hide these Apple TV cords? 

Front of the room.

View from teacher desk to door.

It was hard to place the student desks. There are 30 students and not too many ways to fit them all in the room! I decided to do 5 groups of 6. Hope that works! 

Lifepoint Adventure Grant Mother Daughter Mini-Vacay!

My daughter Lauren and I just returned from an exciting mother daughter mini-vacay in San Francisco thanks to Picky Bars Lifepoint Adventure Grant! We can't thank Picky Bars enough for our awesome trip and I'd love to tell you all the details!

We won a trip from Picky Bars as a mother daughter "foodie" mini vacation. Our trip started with a stop at The Station for a cold brew (Lauren) and pour over (Pam).

We booked a "foodie" tour of North Beach with an agency. The tour guide was simply that - a very friendly tour guide. I thought he was a real chef but found out quickly it was just a costume. After 45 minutes of San Francisco history, we decided we would prefer to do our own food tour and aborted the mission. We wouldn't book that Zozi tour again. 

Since we love coffee, our next stop was another coffee shop for coffee and lunch! We went to Revielle. Our lunch was great!

My daughter Lauren recently got engaged to a wonderful man, Seth. So - we went dress shopping. It was tons of fun - and found out we didn't care for any of the dresses! We headed back to the hotel for our wine and cheese plate.

Yum! What was waiting for us at the hotel? Picky Bars!! YESSSS! Thank you for the wonderful gift box!!!!

If you haven't tried Picky Bars, you must! We buy ours at Trader Joes or our local running store in Folsom. I bought my daughter Lauren her first box of Picky Bars a few years ago for a Christmas present!

We researched Farm to Table restaurants in San Francisco and decided we would go to Boulevard. The executive chef is Nancy Oakes and the food was AMAZING!! We started off with Maryland Chesapeake Bay Soft Shell Crab - Pan Sauteed with Sweet Red Prawns,  Panzanella,  Lemon & Whole Grain Mustard Aioli. It was delicious!

I ordered Spanish Octopus with  lemongrass & kaffir lime chili jam, pan fried rice & squid ‘noodles’, and hearts of palm & celtuce.

I also had a hibiscus moscow mule. On our walk back to the hotel, we stopped by Humphry Slocombe Ice Cream - oh yes. I had Blue Bottle Coffee Ice Cream with Bourbon Vanilla Sauce! We bought matching tee-shirts. (smile)

We spent the night at the Omni Hotel - - very friendly staff!

Saturday morning we checked out and headed to Sur La Table for a cooking class called "Spectacular Summer Brunch" with Chef Erika Mooney. It was tons of fun learning new techniques. We cooked New England Crab Cake Eggs Benedict with Old Bay Hollandaise; Crispy Bacon, Leek and Potato Hash with Chive Creme Fraiche; and Lemon-Blackberry Mini Bundt Cakes. 

Of course, we had to test out the local coffee so we went to Wrecking Ball Coffee Roasters. 

Right next door was Lovely Bride. We scheduled a visit and stopped by for some bridal dress shopping. Our final adventure was a stop at Bi-Rite Market. We heard about their fabulous ice cream but found that we were just too stuffed to try any!

So, once again, a BIG thank you to Picky Bars for the wonderful vacation. This was a first "mother-daughter" vacation. We are both busy people and it was so nice to get away and spend some time together before Lauren gets married. We will always cherish these memories!

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