Sunday, May 7, 2017

Wrapping Up This Semester and School Year!

Hey friends! Long time-no blog but that's just how it goes!
I was so fortunate and blessed to be able to attend the Get Your Teach On Conference! in January at Nashville.! I had signed up for the conference the day the tickets went on sale last year. lol I had been waiting to see my good friend Deanna Jump in action! She is one of a kind and truly a blessing to me in so many ways. That Monday morning of the first day of the conference I helped with registration and it was so much fun to see all the teachers full of excitement for the next 2 days! If you ever get the chance to attend one of the conferences-GO!I'm hoping to attend another one in the coming year or next. I want to see Wade and Hope King at Get Your Teach On! too!!!

How did I get so lucky for her to be my friend?!!! A jewel!

Deanna in action!
Awesome getting to share in the fun with my fellow HPS teachers Kelley Wallace, Joy Raines and Heather Price (who was my student teacher one year) I'm going to have Joy and Kelley on the Kindergarten train for the coming school year-full steam ahead!
Two of my favs-Katie Mense of Little Warriors and Holly Ehle of Mrs. Ehle's Kindergarten Connections! I met these 2 sweet gals years ago at I Teach K! and I love keeping up with them and their sweet families and their class!

In March, I road tripped to the French Lick Blogger/Teacher Meetup/Retreat in March! It was nothing short of amazing and a much needed get away to get refreshed and motivated to finish out the school year. Here is my sweet friend Holly Ehle again who is the master mind behind the event and one of her many assistants Katie Mense.Fun getting to see them again after Get Your Teach On!
Here are some of the other ladies who help put the meetup on every year.

I was also able to visit with some teacher friends I had not seen in years or in a while and some I have followed their blogs for years but just met for the first time at the meetup!
Maria Gavin-KinderCraze

Christina Marie-Miss DeCarbo

the one and only Deedee Wills-Mrs. Wills' Kindergarten

me and Holly
I arrived on Friday afternoon and helped stuff the swag bags-over 550!!! The swag bags were amazing-goodies for days!!! of course, my favorite - SCENTOS!!!

On Saturday, we kicked off the day with Principal Gerry Brooks! HILARIOUS! but seriously he would be a wonderful principal to work for!!!

The awesome duo-Wade and Hope King also presented at the retreat and there were other presenters and I learned a lot of new teaching ideas and strategies!

I stayed at the French Lick Hotel. It is connected to convention center. The hotel is gorgeous!

West Baden Inn-the other hotel on site

I plan on making this retreat an annual event! It was wonderful and a great getaway!

I have had a wonderful year with my class! Of course, as always they were the best class ever! Each unique and special and they have each touched my heart.
Next year will bring changes as the last of the three Kindergarten teachers I hired on with 11 years ago are moving to different grade levels/positions. I will miss them dearly. They each brought something to the table and I knew I could count on them with questions for their areas of expertise. They will do great in their new assignments. We have been through a lot together in the last 11 years....They are my dear friends and they will always be-no one can break that bond! They have always been loyal, faithful and respectful to our friendship!

My family is doing well! Kirk, Kara and Kali are finishing off their semesters with awesome grades! Kirk will graduate from UofMemphis in December. He is going to spend the summer working, helping at church camp and vacationing. :) Kara will have a busy summer of weddings of some college friends, training for missions and 5 weeks of mission in South Korea, Southeast Asia and will fit in a few days at beach with me and Kali.
Kali has a church mission trip, camp and beach retreat planned for the summer.
After me and the girls, enjoy a beach trip and Kara heads off to South Korea, Marty and I are road tripping to the northeast in June. We decided last summer to not put off doing the trips we wanted to take. I will hopefully wind up my summer in Vegas at I Teach K! Looking forward to spending time and laughing it up with my dear teacher friends from all across the country! I looked at calendar and in between the trips, I'll have about 3 weeks at home before school starts back-yikes! Better make the most of it!

Love my family!They are growing so fast!

Wishing you all a blessed summer!!!

Monday, February 6, 2017

My sweet friend Sandy Welch and her Show and Tell aprons!

Hi Friends! Some of us wanted to share how much we love Sandy Welch and her Show and Tell Aprons! I have been a fan of her aprons for many years! I'll never forget meeting Fran Kramer at I Teach K! in Vegas while waiting to hear the keynote speaker Ron Clark several years ago-I think it was summer 2013. Fran was telling me how she had met a lady who wanted to start making these aprons. I can't remember how much longer it was but I came across them on TPT or facebook or somehow and thought "oh wow these must be the ones Fran was talking about and the lady she told me about." I emailed back and forth to Sandy and started my addiction to her aprons. She has been very kind in that I have many that are one of a kind aprons. I have decided not to post my one of a kind originals here with the exception of one that was originally made for Katie Knight last summer but I ended up getting instead. :) Thanks Katie! lol I use her aprons for virtually EVERYTHING! Here are just a few ideas that I have tried and I look forward to hearing other ideas that are shared.

At the beginning, of the year I made pictures of our staff and put their pictures in the apron slots. This is a great way to help the students learn the staff's name  and put a face with them. For example, principal, assistant principal, secretaries, guidance counselor, nurse, librarian, custodian, P.E. teachers, etc. After a week or so of that, I switched over and put all the students pics in the pockets. I would rotate them out until we had said good morning to all and they had a chance to tell us something either about themself or tell us something good. You could also use it as a way to show who is leader, door holder, etc. It's a wonderful way to help the students learn their classmates names. I also put picture clues of our schedule so the students would know what we were doing when and our special activity that day such as library, music, guidance, etc.

For reading/phonics, I use them for everything-I just put the cards that coincide with the skills we are working on that day/week. For example, our popcorn words, letter and letter blends/ digraphs cards, cvc/cvce words, spelling words, punctuation marks, sentence order (upper case letter at the beginning, the slots in the apron provide finger spacing :) and then punctuation at the end of a sentence), main character and setting and key events in story,etc. There are great cards that go along with fairy tales and kinder songs (oldies but goodies). These are a great way to practice retelling and sequencing. You can use picture cards to match with the letter that has the beginning, medial and/or ending sound.

In math, I use the cards for number order, subitizing, math equations and how regardless of the position of the number (first or second) in an addition equation, the answer is still the same. For subtraction, I show how you simply change the number in all from addition and subtract to get your answer. This leads in to a discussion of math fact families. You could put picture cards and have the students tell you which one doesn't belong/categorize.

You could always just hang on a hook at child's level and let them use the apron as a sorting chart while you are not wearing it. :) You can put more than one card in each slot so you can also use as flash cards. And the best thing about her aprons is that they all have pockets in them to store extra cards or other things you need to keep on hand (ink pens, small stamps, scented chap sticks to swipe on kiddos hands for happy chappys :), paper clips, magic wands and any other things you like to have at your fingertips without having to search for!

The cards for the aprons are also sold on TPT and each set has extra blank cards in them for when you want to add your own pics, popcorn words, illustrations, etc.

By the way, it is my understanding that there are some other imitation show and tell aprons out there on the market. Let me assure you that you get what you pay for and with Sandy's show and tell aprons you will not be disappointed! They are high quality fabric and very durable not to mention just down right cute and adorable! Who wants an imitation when you can get the real thing anyway.Don't wait-head on over to TPT and check out her show and tell aprons and order you one. Better yet do like I do and order at least two. That way you don't have to constantly change out the cards between reading, math, writing, etc. It's much easier having multiple aprons for the different subject areas! :)

She also has kid size aprons so what better way than to have the leader or student of the day or special helper where their apron and quiz their classmates on their skills. :)

Here is the link to her website
or find her at TPT Teachers Pay Teachers  and just search show and tell aprons.

Here are some pictures of my aprons with examples of the cards and how I use them and a picture of me and Sandy, Fran and Deedee at I Teach K! last summer! I love her so much and I am looking forward to seeing her again this summer! Oh yeah and I can't wait to get one of her new aprons that she is in the process of making!!! She teased me with a picture of the fabric-Eric Carle!!!

Ya'll these aprons are the best but even better is the woman behind them! Sandy Welch you rock and I'm so blessed to call you friend and I'm so thankful that Fran played a part in introducing me to you and telling me years ago about your vision! If I ever move, I'm coming to California to be closer to you and Fran and Katie Knight!
Here are links to my other Sandy loving and apron loving blog friends!