Saturday, August 19, 2017

2017-2018 Classroom Reveal: Welcome to Narnia!

I have spent all week transforming my classroom from summer storage to a winter wonderland. My students voted on this classroom theme, and I am excited to be posting my first classroom reveal! Welcome to the land of Narnia! Most of the items came from The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe Narnia Classroom Theme on my Teachers Pay Teachers store. I included links for the items from other places.


This adorable lamp is from Walmart. The lamp was such a great deal and an awesome find! I made charts for church and lunch choices. I posted my lesson plans from Tori Gorosave for the first week. The Woodland Tree Bulletin Board Border comes from Oriental Trading.

This wooden post instant download from The Quirky Briars really helped to set the stage!

The students are going to make kings and queens of Narnia with a picture of their face attached to hang on this strip. We have quite a few new friends this year, so this will be helpful as we get to know each other. The cubbies are covered in a snow blanket and white lights from Amazon.

Each student has a cubby with a personalized water bottle and a Bible study box.

The students will open the wardrobe door into Narnia thanks to one of my coworkers.

I ordered these bathroom passes from Ginger E Collection on Etsy.

 I made these these signs for my flexible seating. Students choose their spot by placing their number beneath the spot they would like. The Velcro dots match the number of seats available. My spelling chart is below.

I made posters for Ron Clark's 55 Rules to hang in the classroom. They are such a concrete way to reinforce or teach manners.

The vines from Dollar Tree keep the students focused on the school theme throughout the year. The subject labels give a place for me to write homework for planners.

I made one of these water bottles for each of my students using this tutorial from at The Pinning Mama. Adorable nephew not included.

Silent signals keep instructional time running smoothly. Baxter the box turtle and the longest-living hermit crab in recent are waiting for everyone to return.

One of my students asked for memory practice, so I created this curriculum this summer. It will be available on my TPT store next school year.

In our first unit of religion, we are going to practice writing and leading a Bible study. This project-based unit is available in my TPT store.

Our first day of school includes a big celebration from God - a solar eclipse. We are #pathoftotality, so these are going home with students on our half-day.

My new charging stations for my Chromebooks are pretty fabulous! I used a few zip ties, some taplines, and a metal dish drainer from Wal-mart.

My Daily 5 CAFE is ready to be filled!

With flexible seating, the students use cubbies to store all of their materials.

I bought new baskets from Dollar Tree to organize my math board.

My schedule cards have sweet characters from Narnia.

As does my calendar!

I post both pledges for new students.

I love my new flexible seating spaces from Target!

These were free from our church secretary!

I still have lots of table space for students to use.

The classroom jobs are based on characters from the Narnia's series.

The rest of the supplies are kept in these buckets. I put them around the room in the student's first spot for the day.

One of our parents made these beautiful decorations for the hallway.

I put these together during the summer for families to use.

These gorgeous gifts from my administrator are a blessed present to kick off a new year!

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

The Resource to Help You Teach Maundy Thursday

I have the perfect addition to your Holy Week! My Maundy Thursday lapbook is now available in my TPT store. After reading the story from the Bible, the students summarize the events of Maundy Thursday. They review the stories before and after Maundy Thursday. They choose their favorite Bible verses to share with their peers. The students outline four facts about the disciples and the Passover meal. This is a great take-home activity to help your families understand the events of Maundy Thursday.

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Teach Students about Epiphany

My upper elementary students love these lapbooks - they get to color while listening to Christian music. I love them because they learn the story of Epiphany in a visual way that is easy to remember and ready to share with families. This lapbook is a perfect no-prep activity after the break!

Epiphany Lapbook
 I printed off the Epiphany Lapbook for each student.

Epiphany Lapbook
 Each student needs a 12x18 piece of construction paper. I prefer kingly colors like blue, green, and purple.

Epiphany Lapbook
 All of the pieces have to be cut out.

Epiphany Lapbook
 Color the images for a bright lesson!

Epiphany Lapbook
 Glue the cover pages to the folded construction paper. (There are directions for folding in the PDF.)

Epiphany Lapbook
Glue the center pieces into the project.

Epiphany Lapbook
 Here is a view of the rest of it.

Epiphany Lapbook
This product has plenty of space for a kindergarten student to write, but more details can be added for a middle school student.

Epiphany Lapbook

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Teaching Students to Pray

How do you teach your students to pray? In Matthew 6:9, Jesus says, "This, then, is how you should pray." God call us to pray continually in 1 Thessalonians 5:17. A few years ago, I gave my students a prayer journal template for them to use daily. This year, they started praying the Armor of God based on our theme verse. For the first five minutes of school, they spend time with their Lord and Savior presenting their requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving to God (1 Timothy 2:1).

My students have learned the habit of prayer, but I wanted to diversify their prayer topics. This prayer journal gives them 31 different topics to pray during their moments with God.

31 Days of Prayer for the New Year - Teach by Faith

There are 31 days of prayer for the new year to be used throughout the month of January.
31 Days of Prayer for the New Year - Teach by Faith

The prayer is short, and I provide an extra notebook to extend their prayers. When they finish, I review their prayer for completion but the content of their prayers is fairly private unless they want to show me a specific prayer request.
31 Days of Prayer for the New Year - Teach by Faith

These are a few more examples.
31 Days of Prayer for the New Year - Teach by Faith

Start the new year with 31 days of prayer!

31 Days of Prayer for the New Year - Teach by Faith

Friday, September 23, 2016

Five for Friday: 9/23/16 - Middle School, Mums, Mock Government, Minecraft, and Marches

I am joining up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for a weekly linky party. Five for Friday is a collection of five random things from the day or week. My week begins with a information meeting at church to consider the potential for a middle school at this ministry. The school board held sessions after both services to present information from the study and answer questions. On Monday, we had a mum sale to raise funds for our parent organization. They raised over $2,000 and have not totaled all of the sales. On Wednesday, I prepared all of the information to send home with students for our new Student Council. With the addition of fifth and sixth grade this year, I felt this was a great opportunity to develop leadership qualities, serve our community, and build fellowship. Friday afternoon's Makerspace session began with My students loved creating the video games they play while learning 21st Century skills in the process. Our week ended with a homecoming parade in the local community. Our cadet teacher was nominated for the court, and my students decorated our classroom window in her honor.

Here is the postcard that was sent to all of our church members inviting them to attend an information for a potential middle school. Our church was established in 1996 in Lake Ozark, MO. It was a growing community, and another local church called a missionary-at-large to open a second LCMS church in the area. To meet the needs of the community, a preschool was opened in 2003. Later, it was expanded to a kindergarten in 2012. We have added a grade or more per year depending on the families that came to us. Last year, our current students were fourth graders, and their families are beginning to think about middle school options. A decision was made to research the feasibility of a middle school. A team visited an established school and a school of about 30 years to gather ideas. Then, a survey was sent home to parents to gather data on the support of a middle school. While parents cited sports, music, and clubs as possibilities, the three main reasons included a Christian school, quality academics, and location. After additional letters and support from staff, the school board recommended their plan to the church council. Church council sent it to the voters for approval this Sunday. We are a great place for homeschooling families and students who struggled in the public school to thrive and grow in faith.

This fall, our parent organization changed their fall fundraiser from scarecrow sales to mums. The event was a huge success, but it was also a great opportunity for our newly-formed upper elementary students to serve their school. My students spent their religion time unloading several trailers of mums and sorting them by color on the front lawn. At a profit of $5.50 for a $10 plant, we made over $2,000 from pre-orders. We bought another 50 or so plants for people that picked up a few more after loving the product. The final few were sold at our church rummage sale. Our parent organization does fabulous work and is a key component to the success of this school.
With the addition of our upper elementary, the students are old enough to learn about and participate in student government. Student council is one of several activities we have added, including intramural sports, STEAM, and a Bible scrap booking club. The kindergarten through third grade can run as representatives. There will be a boy and a girl from each class. The fourth through sixth graders can run as officers. The officer candidates learn to create quality campaign posters, write a speech, and present it after chapel. All of the students will learn about the voting process prior to the upcoming presidential election. The student council will serve our community and build fellowship within the school. This new opportunity is great way to help students feel connected to their school!

I am only at number four, and I am realizing how fabulous this week has been. In the midst of lesson plans, instructing, assessing, recess duty, and the daily routine, I love that Five for Friday gives me the opportunity to remember the joys of the week. This picture is probably my favorite! On Fridays, my students participate in a simple Makerspace activity to learn about the design process. To be honest, it needs some guidance. They love the science experiments and creations, but the reflection process and usefulness needs some development. Last week, I used some of my prep time to choose my own Makerspace project. When I came across a Lego coding idea, I knew this was a great opportunity to learn about After introducing it this week, my students were hooked! You know that quiet buzz of learning that occurs when you nail the lesson? Every student is engaged and they are quietly comparing notes before going back to the activity. Perfection! They learned about functions, algorithmic problem solving, abstraction, variables, binary code, and digital citizenship. My techie heart was loving all of the 21st Century skills!

Five for Friday wraps up with a trip down "The Strip," our downtown and home of lake life activities - arcades, ice cream, restaurants, T-shirt shops, etc. The public school had their homecoming football game this weekend, and we are invited to join in the fun with other local community groups. Our parent organization (did I mention their awesomeness?) bought signs and giant shields of our new logo to attach to the float. We rolled down The Strip in style to our theme song for the year (see below). The kids threw candy and practiced their royal waves. I love seeing us active in our community and cheering for our favorite homecoming queen candidate (cadet teacher), Miss Alexis.

Happy Friday!