August 1, 2014

Take Your Time, August! (2 Freebies)

I honestly can't believe it's already August! We don't start school until the end of the month, but I'm really hoping to stretch out these last few weeks as long as possible. The early morning wake ups are the hardest part of work for me. I need to find a school that starts around 10:00. That would be just perfect for my sleep schedule. I wouldn't even mind working until 5:00!

As the clock is ticking down, I'm also reminded of how little time I have left to find a full-time teaching position for next year. If I don't find one, I have to decide if I want to go back to my TA job or give up the (terrible) salary and benefits and sub again. There are pros and cons to both; I've just got to figure out what will work best for me at this point in my life.

Without further ado, I'm linking up (on time... hooray!) with Farley for this month's Currently!

Oops.. silly me, I forgot that I wanted to expand a little bit on that last part. I try not to spend too much time going over the boring stuff on the first day because poor middle school kiddos just get overloaded with that on the first day. I do like to have each student introduce himself or herself so I can hear their names - I make it a personal goal to learn everyone's names by the end of the first week (even if it's a short week). 

Since we do a lot of collaborative work in my classroom, I think it's important to get my kiddos chatting with their peers. I have a fun little freebie they do in their pods by rolling 20-sided dice (I've seen multiple lots of these on ebay for like $5). It allows them to DO SOMETHING, learn about their podmates (This can be a word, right?). They simply take turns rolling the die and then answering the corresponding question, which I post on the projector. I love to circulate and listen to their conversations. Something about rolling the dice really makes them come out of their shells on the first day.

Of course, I also do the Human Scavenger Hunt thing like everyone else in the world. I make mine a competition to see who can get the most points, and some of my squares are very strategic. It's fun to review these answers as a class and get to know a little about what makes my kiddos tick. 


  1. I always grow my hair out, then get it all choppy and crazy, then grow it out…chop it… It's a cycle. Right now, I'm growing… I usually don't regret cutting it. I hope you find a job you want soon! I know it's been tough for a lot of people I know. My niece subbed all of last year and will be subbing again this year (so far)-they all claim they love her…but there's just nothing open for her (she's HS math).
    Enjoy your sleep schedule a little longer!

  2. I get what you mean about the job thing. It's super tough around here too...I've been teaching for 8 years but still don't have a "real" (permanent) job. I always end up going back to subbing (or terms) and working a part-time job on the side. Keep it positive though! I know the right position is out there for both of us!

    Apples, Owls, and Peppermint Mochas

  3. I've been wondering the same thing about my hair! Its hot with long hair, but I always miss it after its cut. So I feel your pain!! lol
    Sleep in as long as you can! Its an excellent thing to be able to do!!
    Good luck on finding that perfect job!!

  4. Love the 20-sided dice idea! Anything new to catch our kids' attention!! I do a classroom scavenger hunt, along with Friend BINGO (Human Scavenger Hunt). It's for students to find specific items in our room so they know where all the supplies are, etc.

  5. Oh Doll, I'm so sorry about your work dilemma! I hope you can take your time and do some soul searching to decide what situation could make you happiest if you aren't a classroom teacher.
    Short and Sassy Teacher

  6. That dice game is a great ice breaker idea :) I hadn't seen that in my pinterest quests this summer! I am sorry to hear about your current work dillemma, I shall remain steadfast in my positivity that you will find something! I also go back and forth about cutting my hair- and usually regret it EVERY dang TIME! Enjoy the sleeping in too, I know I am :)

    Anchored in the Middle

  7. I always said I would be a FABULOUS night school teacher. For serious. Sleep all day...teach all night. Ideal life!
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

  8. I wanna cut my hair so bad. It's down to the middle of my back, but I can't STAND it. It's never down; always up in a rubber band or clip. I don't know why I don't just chop to to shoulder length....I'm a chicken.

    Teaching Powered by Caffeine

  9. Hello new Illinois blogger friend! I love finding new Illinois bloggers. I'm growing my hair out right now for the zillionth time and I am trying so hard to not cut it! I can do it! You can do it! Good luck on your job hunt. What part of Illinois do you generally live? I feel like there are always TONS of jobs up where I am and in my district specifically.

    Teaching In A Nutshell
    That Fancy Blog Boutique

  10. Hey Erin! I totally know what you mean about wanting to sleep in. That's my biggest problem, too! Enjoy going back to middle school kids - I'm excited to see the kids I know from last year, but just not the same as middle. They are the best! :-) Oh - and the cutting hair - I always have cutters remorse, but as long as it's not too short I get over it pretty quick. Did you decide what to do yet?