Tuesday, 26 May 2015

How telling my class "I love you" has changed the way I teach

Last year, after 7 years at my first workplace, I changed schools. Same system, same year level but I soon found a very different place. A change that I thought would be relatively easy turned out to be really, really hard work. Everything was different staff wise and routine wise. Small things at my old school were big things here and vice versa. 

One of the biggest changes was the way every staff member greeted the kids. No standard "Good morning", instead I walked in to a room of kids I had never met greeting me with, "Good morning Mrs Perry and God bless you. Love ya". And I have to tell you, I hated it. I didn't like the "cheese" factor, the fact that the kids were saying that they loved me when they'd never met me before and I've always cringed over the 'God bless you' as I had always felt it was something that a priest said. But it is embedded at my school, something the kids are used to saying to everyone and are used to hearing back.

A year on and I have to say I (almost) love it, for the one reason that it gives me the freedom to tell my class that I love them. In the past I have never said this to my class, always feeling like it wasn't my place. Oh boy, is it a relief to get it out there. It's true, always has been for every kid I have taught. They are all special and unique, I continue to remember them and every year of kiddos have made me a better teacher.

This year I have changed year levels to teach 3/4's and I tell my class I love them every morning, sometimes I few times a day. Normally it's something along the lines of "You know I love you all but....", "I love you kiddos, that was an awesome morning.." 

This class and I just click. We are learning, laughing and generally having a great time doing both. I hope that they feel the importance of those 3 words that I say, that they know that I mean it. 

About a month after school had started this year, as "that" kid was leaving the classroom for the afternoon he turned around and shouted "Love you Mrs Perry". My smile must have been visible from space! To know I was getting somewhere with him was, and still is, the best feeling.

The change of schools is not something I regret doing. Almost 18 months on I know that I have learnt a lot but the challenge of being "new" is still there. However, I am most grateful for this 'gift' this place has given me, having the freedom to say I love you to my class of gorgeous people without feeling unprofessional or creepy. Just a devoted teacher telling the truth.

post signature

Saturday, 23 May 2015

Five for Friday- 22nd of May

Happy Friday! I'm linking up with Kasey from Doodle Bugs to share the hip-happeneings from this week.

~ One ~
Our Author Study this term has been Graeme Base. After reading Uno's Garden this week we used the site Build Your Wild Self to create magical creatures for Uno's Garden. Easy to use and heaps of fun.

~ Two ~
Our Inquiry topic this term is "How Can We Make a Change for the Better?". We have been investigating our impact on the Earth and the resources we use by calculating our Carbon footprint. We made this cute freebie craft from Teach with Me.

Our Silhouette Zentangles turned out fantastically! My class are loving art at the minute, t's great to see how creative they are.

~ Four~
Our Wonderwall thinkings are starting to head in a new direction to finish up our Inquiry unit. It's great to see how my students all have different areas they are interested in from renewable resources, to volunteer organisations, to causes and effects of natural disasters. I'm really looking forward to the 'Going Further' stage!

~ Five ~
Our Bushfire Silhouettes from last week, they turned out better than expected.

Happy weekend,

post signature

Sunday, 17 May 2015

Back to School Mini-Reader

I've been spending today updating some products in my store and creating some new ones. This one is a little early in the year but I have updated my At School Mini-Reader to include both a black and white and colour version.

This is a really easy book to print and use in the first week of school and is a favourite of mine to use as my students first take-home reader.

There are 6 pages in total, with cutie graphics from Graphics From the PondSimply print, cut & staple the colour version or have students colour in the black & white copy.

Download it for $1.50 here. Hopefully I will have some more mini-readers posted soon.

post signature

Friday, 8 May 2015

Five for Friday- 8th of May

What a week it's been! Yay for Friday. Linking up with Kasey from Doodle Bugs to share the Friday love.

~ One ~
We got busy this week making these adorable Mother's Day Candle holders. They were fairly easy and look adorable but, I'll admit when my teaching buddy said we were making these and we're arming the kids with spray paint I looked at her like she was insane! Turned out well, so all worth it.

~ Two ~
I was gifted these yesterday from a cutie and her brother. They were so sweet. Even loved the comment from the brother, said to his Mama, "I really think Mrs Perry's minion obsession has gone too far". Haha, and then they bought me these!

My kiddos wrote the best Persuasive texts this week. Love them. 

~ Four~
Kiddos loved playing Land Grab this week using our dry erase pockets and new whiteboard markers. We are really starting to understand multiplication {whew}.

~ Five ~
If you are following me on Instagram, you'd know I had an amazing time at Groovin the Moo last weekend. Dirty Docs are always a good sign of a fun time!

Hope you had a great week!

Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Teacher survival kit

In my 9 years of teaching, I have managed to have a lot of student teachers, so many I've lost count. I'm not sure how the system works in the US but here in Australia, students are sent out from Universities from their 1st year, increasing their placement time until their final, 4th year of University. 

Sometimes it can be really hard to work out what to give them as a parting gift but I've made a few rules for myself that have worked. 

First year & Second Year- Card from the students.

Third Year- Card from students, A Picture story book or two, hard cover when possible.

Fourth Year- Card from the students, a class photo and a Picture story book or my "Teacher Survival Kit". 

The Survival Kit is really easy to make and I vary what I put in it depending on the student and what I can find at the cheap shops. 

Some of the more common items are:
-basket or bag that they can reuse for their classroom;
-a big bucket of chalk;
-coffee sachets, tea bags, mints, etc;
-stickers & stamps;
-pens, textas, crayons, etc;
-notebooks, planners, a diary;
-a big box of bubbles and a copy of Lauren's Self-Control Bubbles;
-award certificates, ribbons or bracelets.

Do you have any other great gift ideas? Leave your comments below.

post signature

Sunday, 3 May 2015

Currently May!

So excited that it is May already! Mainly because in my head and with Bec-logic that means it's a tiny bit closer to December, like 7 whole months until we get Summer again. Sigh. But on a brighter note it's time to link up with Farley over at Oh Boy Fourth Grade for this month's Currently

I spent a massive day yesterday (11 hours massive) at Groovin the Moo which is a music festival here in Australia. As it's almost Winter, let's just say it was a chilly festival once the sun went down but it was lots of fun. We are so lucky that this visits my home town every year. I got to see Ball Park Music who were probably my highlight! And Meg Mac, Hilltop Hoods, Sticky Fingers (yes their name is disgusting, but the band is amazing) to name a few. Awesomeness!

So that is why I am not elaborating any further on this and am instead heading back to bed.

Hope you have a fantastic May!

09 10