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Organizing My Classroom Library Part 1

No time, no blog.  It has been a very busy week and a half.  This whole cleaning the house thing and taking my son to school {ESY} has kept me away, but I am now back and ready to rejoin the blogging world.

If you read my Summer Bucket List, you may remember that one thing that I planned on doing this summer was organizing my classroom library.  On my teacher work day, I gathered all most of my books up and put them in my car and brought them home.  My husband was not happy so excited to see all of my books come home.  haha

Well, my last day of work was June 8th.  I just took out half of my books yesterday.  Oops.  The others were taken out by my husband about a week ago.

Still in my car three weeks after I put them in. lol

The ones my husband took out.
So I grabbed a bucket {the green one in the second picture as a matter of fact.}, and brought it inside.  I opened up my Classroom Organizer page and got to work.  

I will show you how to add books online today.  Tomorrow I will show you how to add books using the Classroom Organizer app on my smartphone. 

It's very easy to set up your own account.  Click on Create Your Account and then follow the directions given.  

Once you have signed in, you will need to go to your Teacher Page to add books.   

To type in the ISBN number, first find the number on your book.  Then type it in to the Quick Add box and click Add.  

This will then pop up on your screen.  If you do not like the You can modify what columns you want by going to Edit Columns button above your book list.  

This is what your options will look like.  Be warned though, I found out that some of the choices are not that great.  The bucket that I was working on was my AR books with levels between 2.5-2.9 and by clicking on the AR choice, only a few books came up as AR.  The biggest reason I wanted to use this program was to make a master list, so I don't mind that some of the information does not come up.  Others may be a tad disappointed in that.  You can always add grade levels, AR levels, etc. by clicking on the edit button in the first column of your list. 

Once you have added your books into the computer, you can then export them into an Excel document. This is what my list looked like after I added a few books in.  

I know that I will enjoy having this list for several reasons. First of all, I will know if I have already purchased a certain book before.  Secondly, I will be able to keep this list at home and school so that I can plan better.  Finally, I just like seeing what books I have.  I love children's literature and it gives me joy to have so many great titles for my students to use.  

I hope you have enjoyed Part 1 of using Classroom Organizer from Booksource.  

On a personal note, I wanted to share what my family did today.  Each month, AMC Movie Theaters has a sensory friendly showing of a kid friendly movie so that children with Autism and their families can enjoy a movie.  They turn the sound down and the lights are up a little bit.  Children are able to talk to their parents or walk around.  Today they showed the new Pixar movie Brave.  Colton has a really tough time with movies. {Seriously, it's in his IEP that he's allowed a different activity if he has a hard time with a movie in class.}  We prepped him by showing him the preview at home for several days in a row.  It was such a great experience!  We got to go to the movies as a family and Colton loved the show!  If you would like more information about sensory friendly movies, please click here.  Thanks!

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Thank you to everyone who entered my giveaway for the $25 gift certificate for Teachers Pay Teachers and two items from my TpT store!  The winner is:

Karen you will be receiving an email shortly!  For everyone who did not win, I am going to have my TpT store on sale for 20% off today only.   Thanks again for making my first big giveaway a success!
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End of Year Portfolios {And Some Other Stuff}

First of all, I want to thank everyone who has entered into my giveaway!!!  I tried to thank everyone who wrote a comment personally, but blogger isn't letting me for some reason.  Not sure why...hmmm.  I'm going to try again later so hopefully it will work then.  If you have not entered yet, click the picture and it will take you there.  :)

Secondly, have you ever had one of those days that just feels weird?  Well, that was today for me. Even though I have already been off from school for a week, I haven't really had any "down" time.  Today made up for that.  I was at my house all by myself and it felt very strange.  My husband was at work {not so strange actually lol}, today was my son's first day of summer school, and my dog was getting her teeth cleaned.  I can't tell you the last time I was home alone.  It was just too quiet.  After teaching Kindergarten, one would think I would relish in the quietness.  Not me.  I couldn't wait to pick up my son from school and my dog  from the vet.  It feels normal in the Lattin household again - cartoons on and a dog barking.  :)  And just because I think my dog is the cutest thing ever, here's one of my favorite pics of her.  

Ok - I think I'm ready to write about what's in the title now that I've gotten all of that out of my system. :)

 I wanted to share the portfolios that I sent home with each student at the end of the year.  Every year, I save items that the students have completed throughout the year.  I usually just have the students color a manila folder and put everything in there.  This year I took the torn paper names projects that we did in September and stapled a plain piece of construction paper to the back.  It made a nice pocket for all of the projects I saved.  Here is an example of a portfolio that was stuffed and ready to go home.

I made sure to add the memory book that I blogged about here.  The books looked great bound together.  I love how different her August and April self-portraits looked.  :)

Here is a picture of all the other goodies inside the portfolio.  Just looking at the picture reminds me of all the fun we had this year.  From the torn paper apples we made in September to the flag hearts we made in May, all of the projects bring back so many great memories.  I could tell you a story about every piece of paper and project in there.  I hope the parents enjoyed looking through their child's work and were as proud of them as I am.  :)

I hope you enjoyed seeing how I shared my students' work with their parents.  I loved how they turned out!  How do you share your students' work at the end of the year?  I would love to hear what you do for your students.  

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Father's Day Activities

Do you ever feel like Father's Day gets the short end of the stick sometimes when it comes to doing projects at school?  I do.  Mother's Day is in May when every school is still in session.  There are always great ideas out there for Mother's Day.  Most schools are out by the time Father's Day comes around and with all of the end of the year hoopla, it kind of gets forgotten about.  Well not in my class this year.  When I saw this super cute SuperDad Father's Day Project by Robyn over at Busy Bees, I knew I had to snag it up.  My students loved making these for their fathers.  It was so cute what they came up with for each page.  Here are some pictures from my Kinders' books.

I thought they turned out great!  I really hope all of the Dads enjoy them on Sunday.  One of my Kinders was so cute.  He was very concerned that he would not know when to give his book to his dad.  I told him that I bet his mom would help him out.  He was all smiles then.  Gotta love those Kinders!

I was going to do this project with my son this week, but with my parents in town and my father-in-law in the hospital, I knew that this project would be a little too ambitious for us.    I found a couple of things online, but nothing really fit exactly. I mixed a few together and this is what I came up with.  {Click here if you would like a copy.}

Clipart by KPM Doodles - Frame by Scrappin Doodles

I think it turned out great!  I think my husband is going to love it!  The only two things that my son got right was my husband's name and favorite color.  I love that Colton thought his dad's favorite food was salt. {I laughed so hard when Colton wrote that down.}   I had just bought Colton some pirate stickers so of course he wanted to use them in his picture.  I can't wait to see my husband's reaction on Sunday!

I want to thank everyone who has joined my giveaway!  It has been great reading all of the comments.  I have especially enjoyed reading what everyone's favorite professional book is.  {I will write more about that after the giveaway is over.}  If you haven't entered yet, there is still time.  Thanks again!!!

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100 Followers Giveaway!

I am so excited!!!  I went to bed with 99 followers and I woke up with 100!  Guess what that means.  It's Giveaway Time!

I will be giving away a $25 gift certificate to Teachers Pay Teachers and any 2 items from my Teachers Pay Teachers store to one lucky winner!  Thanks for visiting my blog and being a follower!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Summer is Here! First Project Completed!

I am so excited that summer is here!  I got my room cleaned up and all packed away on Friday.  Here's what my room looks like right now.  Well, part of it anyway.  It's always a little sad to see an empty room at the end of the year.  I do have to say that I enjoy having my own closets for all of my "stuff."  {Only the Kinder and Sped preschool rooms have their own closets. Everyone else shares "pod" closets.}  Hopefully, I will be able to find everything quickly in August and be able to put my room back together.

My parents arrived on Friday after I was finished in my classroom.  My mom and I always enjoy shopping together and that is just what we did on Saturday.  One of our stops was Hobby Lobby.  As I was walking around, I ended up in the aisle with the painted wooden cut-outs.  A light bulb went on and I remembered this post from April at Chalk Talk.  I purchased a few wooden cut-outs, some ribbon and some buttons.  This is what I ended up with today.  I made my very own retelling rope.  

My retelling rope looks a little different from April's, but it fits the needs of my students better.  The castle stands for where the story takes place.  The sun stands for when the story takes place.  The princess stands for who the characters are in the story.  The red button is for what happens first in the story, the yellow button stands for what happens in the middle of the story, and the blue button stands for what happens last in the story.  I hope that this will help my students identify the key details in stories.  There are many examples of retelling ropes out there.  Everyone has their own little twist.  Totally Terrific in Texas has a set of pictures so that you can download if you don't want to use cut-outs.  First Grade W.O.W. had her students make their own retelling ropes.  She has a download if you would like to make them with your students.  I hope that this gives you the inspiration to make your own retelling rope.

Well, I should probably go to bed now.  My parents and I are are surprising Colton in the morning with a day trip to Disneyland!  I can't wait to see his face when we tell him!

Have a great Tuesday!
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Last Day of School

Well, we made it!  We had such a fun last day of school.  Usually, the last day of school drags on, but not today.  We started the day signing yearbooks.  For those students who did not purchase yearbooks, we gave the students a piece of paper for their friends to sign.  The kids had such a good time writing in their friends books and having their teachers sign too.  :)  We then went outside and had a little snack that the school provided. {We usually have lunch at 11:00, but we were not eating lunch today and we got out at 12:45.}  After snack, we went into my bestie's room.  We had put large pieces of butcher paper on the tables and just let the kids draw.  They loved it!  They made some great masterpieces.  {Apparently, the kids like rainbows.}

We then went into my classroom and watched a slideshow that my bestie made.  The kids loved seeing their pictures from throughout the year.  We gave each student a copy at the end of the day.  

Next, the students went outside and blew bubbles.  Our assistants stayed outside with them while my bestie and I did this to her room.  

The students were so excited when they came into the room.  The students enjoyed cupcakes, cookies, juice boxes, and chips while visiting with their friends.  It was then time to go home.  Lots of hugs later, my classroom was empty.  I have very fond memories of this class and will miss them very much.

My summer officially starts tomorrow after cleaning my room and completing all of the end of the year paperwork.  For those of you who have already started summer, I am so excited to join you!  For those of you still teaching, I hope you have a good rest of the year!
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My Week, My Favorite Thing in My Classroom and My 1st Currently

I think I can, I think I can, I think I can make it through the last 1/2 day of school tomorrow.  Wow - it has been such a busy week.  Kindergarten Promotion was on Monday.  My students did such a great job singing, dancing, and signing!!!  The parents all enjoyed the program and cried during One Small Voice.  Mission accomplished!  :)  Report card comments were due to Admin on Tuesday.  Today we worked on our Father's Day projects.  {More on that in a future post.}  Tomorrow the kids stay until 12:45.  We have a day of bubbles, cupcakes and fun scheduled.  Hopefully, I will not cry too much.  Friday is our Teacher Work Day to finish out our end of the year "stuff" and my parents are coming into town from Kansas.

As I was taking things down today, I had to take a picture of my favorite thing in my room before it was gone.  To understand my love for my favorite thing, you have to understand my room. {This is going to be long - sorry.}  I have 8, yes 8, doors in my room.  Each wall has two, one at each end.  Two doors outside, two doors to school hallway, two doors that go to the other two Kinder rooms and bathrooms, and two doors for my closets.  Two of my walls have whiteboards.  Another wall has my windows outside.  My fourth wall has my sinks and waterfountains, two small bulletin boards and a big empty space.  The big empty space is where my favorite thing in my classroom is located.

I was in this classroom 3 years ago and this space was just a wasted space.  This year I was assigned  to this room again.  {Really, I volunteered.  Who in their right mind would want a room with 8 doors?} I knew I had to do something with the only space I had to display student work.  This is what I came up with.  My bestie helped me line up the scrapbook paper.  It took awhile, but in the end, so worth it. I added clothespins to easily put up and take down projects and art work.  I loved it and it has been something that a lot of people have complimented me on this year.  I am so sad that I have to take it down tomorrow.  We have to take everything down {except alphabet lines} for the summer.  Hey, maybe if I put a letter on each clip...hmmmm.  Do you think that will work?  lol

Thanks for letting me share my favorite thing in my classroom!

I am so excited to be joining Farley in my very first Currently.  I have been seeing these for months and I am finally ready to jump in feet first.

I so wish we could go back to Italy.  We went about 4 years ago and I loved it!  I had the best gelato in Bellagio and it was so relaxing in Asolo.  Ah, memories.   We have been to Disneyland twice so far this year {annual passes}.  We are going to go to San Diego this summer.  I can't wait to go back to the zoo and to take Colton on a pirate ship.  

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Favorite Fonts Linky Party

If there is one thing I love more than clip art {and I love clip art}, it's fun fonts.  One of the first things I did when I got my new computer was to move my fonts over.  I felt like I couldn't do anything without my favorites.

Natalie over at Teachery Tidbits is having a Favorite Fonts Linky Party and I knew I had to jump on this one!

Here is my list of favorite fonts.  Of course, this is subject to change.  I have downloaded so many new fonts from this linky party.  :)
Frame from Graphics From the Pond

Jump over to Teachery Tidbits to find some other great fonts!

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Memory Book - Looking Back

I have been having so much fun this weekend organizing my students' memory books.  We used Katie Mense's Kindergarten Portfolio and Memory Book this year and I have loved it!  This was my very first purchase on Teachers Pay Teachers and it started my whole TpT obsession.

Each month we completed an ABC writing page, a numbers writing page, and a self-portrait.  Most months we have also completed an extra page that goes with a theme of the month.  I have to say the self-portrait pages have been my favorites.  I loved looking at how they drew themselves in August and how they draw themselves now.  So cute!!!  Little circles with arms and legs sticking out have turned into pictures of people with a head, body, arms, legs, all the good stuff {lol}.

The "theme" page for May was a Memories page.  First we made a list of things that the students remembered.  It was so much fun to see what the students' favorites were. Some of the things they came up with were the Halloween party, the Valentine's Day party, Field Day, and jumping over candlesticks.  {When we read Jack Be Nimble, my bestie brought candlesticks to school and the kids jumped over them a la Jack.}   Here are a few pictures of my students' memories.  :)

I had forgotten about bowling at our Halloween party.  :)

I love how his shark is saying "Grr."

That's a fire truck spraying all kids on Field Day.  

This student did a great job drawing the tunnel walk through at the Shark Reef.   

We only have 3.5 days left with the kids.  It's amazing how quickly the year has gone by.  I'm so proud of all my students!  I will probably be a blubbering idiot tomorrow at our Kindergarten Promotion Ceremony.  lol

On a side note, I had extra pieces for my raccoon craft and Colton decided he wanted to make one.  Personally, I think his is much cuter than mine.  :)

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