Saturday, August 16, 2014

Getting ready to INVESTIGATE another year!

I am SO excited for this coming up 2014-2015 school year! I got a new classroom (one with a WINDOW and I am SO excited!!) this classroom is smaller than my last one, but it feels more cozy. 

Our theme this year is detective/investigation. The 3rd grade team lucked out and snatched up the adorable pink panther for us. My classroom this year is completely in school theme, I went with bright chevron theme  (which you can grab at my TpT store) and with a few pink panthers scattered in there. 

Let the tour of Mrs. Teel's 2014-2015 Classroom BEGIN! 

First off, I am IN LOVE with my door this year! 
Isn't that pink panther adorable?!?! 
SO glad we got him!!

Here is the view from my door looking into my room. The sign hanging from the ceiling says "Welcome!" of course, you can purchase my pennants and have them spell out whatever you wish at 

Calendar and jobs. 
I will write each students name on the Popsicle stick and rotate them through each job on Mondays. The sticks not in the rotation will go in the Job Names pail. 

This bookshelf is to the right of my door once you walk in. It houses dictionaries, textbooks, and the trays (with labels you can get at my TpT store) is for papers from office to pass out, a tray for things to turn into office, a spot for notes from home, and the colored ones are for my 2 classes (one blue, one green) to turn in any signed failing papers. 

Pencil Sharpener station!

hahaha! So true!!

Filing cabinet labels!!

The cabinets above my sink. Love that all my storage bins above my cabinets are all labeled and I know exactly what is in each one! 

Here is another view of my room looking at the door and that bookshelf! 

My small group table and my WINDOW!! :) 
Love my bucket seats I created. Bought the tubs from wal-mart, and turned them upside dow, cut out a circle of memory foam and hot glued the fabric down! Easy peasy. 

The shelf behind my small group table.. label CRAZY!! 

A wide shot looking from my small group table. 

My back cabinets. I really wanted a spot for all the major topics we cover in 3rd grade reading, especially the ones that are important to the STAAR test!! 

Here is my bucks system that I will put the student names on and store their behavior bucks they earn. Next to that is "Text Features" bulletin display. Text features is one thing the 3rd graders must know. I will move the pink star to the text feature poster we are studying throughout the year so the kids know which one we are focusing on. :) 

Here is the adorable Figurative Language display and the Grammar display. Again, I will move the pink star to emphasize the skill we are currently focusing on. 

Here is how I keep track of where each student is at during the writing process. 

As you can see, each of my classes (the blue class and the green class) have a numbered clip that they will move up and down the process. 

Here is a peek into one of my cabinets... I clearly went LABEL CRAZY this year!! 
But I am SO excited to be SO organized! 

 I love this arrangement for my desks. Their supply buckets stay perfectly between the desks (the bungee cords help with that) and the kids are not pushing it to each other desks.

 Just pencils in their supply buckets for now!

I am also in love with my library. I bought tubs and labeled/organized my library by genres (labels available on my TpT store also!) I LOVE my crate seats too. Turns my library into a very cozy corner. 

I made these by taking milk crates and covering them with an old green curtain I had, the memory foam, wood and covering the top with fabric. 

 The inside of the crates. Perfect for those books that don't exactly fit in with a certain genre or over flow books!

I found this adorable Book Hospital label on TpT and just fell in love!
 Of course I have my EEKK! Framed and ready to go!
 Love framing different posters.

This year I am also going to try my hand at the popular library sticks we have all seen all over pinterest! 
One for each class of course!!

A wide shot looking onto my small group area and library. 

 Here are my prefix and suffix boards you can see above the shelving.
These are available at my TpT store at:

My MEGA desk. I have never had such a large desk area before but so excited that all my wires are hidden and I could decorate the from of my desk with my name!! 

A shot of behind my desk. Covered an ugly board with fabric. It is so bright and cheery!

Here I will write what we are doing each day in the my reading class! 
Plus the too cute rules I found on TpT! 

My promethean board, floor space and white board. I don't have any student backs to the board, and it is where our lessons take place! 

My Blurt chart. You can read more about this behavior tool I use here:

This is the side chalkboard directly to the left of my door. Here I have this board broken into 2 parts: Writing and Reading. Each with different important skills we learn throughout the year. The pink star will be pinned to the type of writing we are currently doing. 

Here is the reading side. Again, the pink star will move next the skill we are focusing on that week! 

Next to the chalk board is a bulletin board that I have created into my genre board. I bet you can guess what I will use that pink star for huh?? :) 

I have created a working on words station next to my desk for students to spell out spelling words.
On top of the magnet desk is their turn in bucket.

 On my campus we each get 6 Chromebooks. I am so excited to use this niffy charging station I created!

 Here is that back shelving unit by my library. It holds my stations/buckets for daily five. I am missing my tape recorder for my books on tape!

 Here is my big books station for daily five. It is underneath my big whiteboard by my Promethean board.

 This is also apart of my daily five stations. I use this for creative writing.

 Also on that back shelving is my colorful pens and revising/editing pens for students to use during the writing process.

 I also have their paper stored here...

and different supplies they need during their time with me!!!

I will blog again once I have all my Daily Five stations up and running!


Happy Teaching Friends!!!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Candyland Fun!

STAAR is right around the corner and I don't know about you but my kids are in need of a good dose of MOTIVATION with a sprinkle of ENGAGEMENT! Nothing gets my 3rd graders ready and rearing like some good ole competition... enter CANDYLAND GIANT WALL GAME BOARD!! 

Completed Game Board!

Several weeks ago I stumbled upon task cards on and have been swept up in them completely. I bought, laminated, cut out, put on rings and ect. over 30 different task cards. They are seriously the best way to review those difficult reading STAAR concepts in small groups and for independent practice without shoving full passages in their sweet little third grade faces. After doing all this work, and spending an ungodly amount of money I introduced them to my students and seriously a week later the "newness" was all gone and they were fizzing out quickly -- BUT -- I knew these tasks cards would work for review if the kids would just take them seriously and actually DO them.

At my school we have been talking a lot about motivation and what we can do to actively engage our students. We talked about what they naturally want to do (games, tv, sports...) and how we can incorporate that into lessons and activities we do that aren't as fun, especially around STAAR time!!

Keeping this in mind, one day while I was wondering what I could do to make my kids engaged and as excited as I was about these task cards, it came to me to turn my completely abandoned word wall into a game board that the kids could roll and move their little game piece each time they completed and passed a set of task cards!! I told my WONDERFUL student teacher this and she, like an angel, took on the project and added her own great ideas and turned my terrible, naked word wall into a work of art!!

My word wall before the transformation at the beginning of school.  (it did have SOME stuff on it...)

Some of the squares the kids can land on!! 

What the kids do during workshop time (when I am with my small groups and they are working independently on different things) are task cards (along with other daily five things.. see my daily five post). They choose a set of task cards, answer the questions on the recording sheet, turn it in when completed and check off that set by their name.

Bucket I keep all task cards organized in and the check list for the kids.

Example of a task card set. Each set is in a plastic sheet protector with copies of the recording sheet and the task cards on a ring. 
On the back is a poster to remind the kids what they are working on in this task card set. 

As I grade them the kids get to roll and move their little game piece face and get STAAR beads.
My kids are now super motivated and are getting these task cards done! Some even want to do them during recess!! Ahh, what sweet competition can do... and one outstanding, all-star student teacher can create!!

Happy Teaching Friends !!