Why Students Should Read Each Night

As I was navigating through Pinterest today I came across a great visual to possibly hand out at the beginning of the year to parents. This little sheet is very handy for parents (and students) to see and understand the importance behind 20+ minutes of daily reading at home. The High-Tech Teacher revamped this handout and you can visit her blog here to get it :)

This handout was created by The High-Tech Teacher

Binder Covers + Back to School Forms

Happy Thursday! Today I was in the mood to update my binder covers for next year. Just looking for some color and an overall refreshing look to my binders since last year was good...just not what I wanted this year. So, I went ahead and went with full color! Available on my TpT store for FREE is my binder cover packet. With this download you'll get some nice covers as well as some forms I put together and plan on using during our Back to School night event.
These binder covers include: lesson plans, guided reading lesson plans, writing grades, word study lesson plans, student information, and social committee (I am the co-president member at my school). 

Included in my packet are these forms that can be used in your classroom or you can even do something similar. Something that my grade level does in attempt to organize school supplies coming in AND keep kids busy while you talk with parents is a scavenger hunt on Open House day. This is a sheet that is given to students upon arrival and they spend the 30 minutes or so getting used to the classroom all the while putting their supplies in designated areas. So easy!
 During Back to School Night or schools sometimes refer to it as Parent Night, this form will help you gather information about your students. I typically place this form in a pocket folder along with other important information. This is placed on the student's desk and the parents fill out necessary forms while you talk about the upcoming year.
This next form was a life saver for me last year and I've updated it to give it a better look. How I use this form is that each week students record where they ended each day on the Clip Chart. As morning work each Monday, students practice writing their names and writing the dates for each day of the week that week. This saves a lot of time at the end of the day...but of course I have a few who skip this step in the morning and are required to write the dates at the end of the day before getting their backpacks. Each night parents are asked to initial next to each day, telling me that they have seen their behavior. This also helps cut down on parents needing those daily emails about their child's behavior. 
Last year I allowed students to circle with a pencil where they ended but I ran into the problem of certain friends changing them when I wasn't looking or when they got home. I'm thinking of this year having them use a crayon or a highlighter at their seats to record them. We will see how this goes. :)

This little slip also helps me keep track of behavior grades and gives good evidence for parent-teacher conferences. 

What do you use in your classroom for behavior management??



Getting back into the swing of things...

So our county just had their last teacher workday and I am officially on summer break! I have neglected the blog for some time but as it was my first year in second grade I found myself becoming overwhelmed with all the happenings! Teachers should always try to set goals for themselves and it just so happens that mine, once again, has been to be better about blogging and sharing the exciting things going on in my classroom. I enjoy hopping over to various teacher blogs and it's exciting to see all the different ways teachers have come up with teaching the curriculum. These same blogs have inspired me in so many ways and I am happy to begin sharing my experiences yet again. :)

So, as I finish up this year, and begin thinking about next year, I am already revamping some of the odds and ends that go into organizing myself for the beginning of the year. I've been busy looking through old papers and files and reflecting on the systems I had in place and how I could improve them.

One thing was my behavior management system. I currently use the Clip Chart system and I have seen that this little chart really does work! My kiddos are all about moving their clips up and even some who have gotten into the "Clip Hall of Fame". It was just exciting for me to see how invested these guys got into just some clothespins, haha. Anyways, of course there are a few kiddos who tend to move down the chart then up and I wanted to find a way to connect home to school a little more. I wanted my students to be supported at home in regards to their behavior and the strategies they could come up with to 'do better next time'. I have just found that when the expectation is the same at home as it is in school, student's behavior does a 180.

So, with that said, this year I am going to try to use the "Think Sheet" whenever students land themselves on Parent Contact, which is the lowest level on the chart. Luckily not too many of my students have been here but those that may next year, I want a quick way for students to take accountability but also relay the message to mom and dad effectively.

What systems do you have in place for behavior management and parent connection?