Superheroes and Scotch Tape
::falling into bed as though I have run a marathon:: ::now waiting for you to stop laughing at the thought of me running a marathon:: I. am. Spent. And not in the good way..you know..from spending money while shopping at Outlets. I mean spent as in tired, done for, brain on off. Today I finished the back wall of my classroom. It. is. done. Well, at least until tomorrow when I need to go take the scotch tape down from taping it into place on the wall. Expo markers and scotch tape...I swear I keep them in business. They should really pay me advertising. Or I'd even settle for freebies...
My entire classroom was inspired by the wonderfully talented, brilliantly creative Melonheadz. If you have not heard of her clip art we must talk. She is absolutely one of the people I fan-girled out on at the TPT conference. She holds more talent in her little pinky than I do in my entire purse collection. I mean come on..that says something. SO here's what inspired me..and while you're checking out my inspiration, check out the rest of her amazing designs. You'll thank me. You are welcome.
I went from the jungle..to this. Complete opposite. My brain needed a change. It needed straight lines and bright colors. Gone are the days of muted browns and tans. Hello fuchsia (not magenta or hot pink..fushia..this is important. If you do not know the difference I will help you. I will be your color Yoda) hello turquoise..hello purple and orange! Here's my process: 1. Draw on bulletin board paper 2. Cut out 3. Tape into place 4. Hot glue. Not that it's all that difficult..but of course, I made it difficult. One day I will learn to do things the easy way. For example: using post-it notes instead of cutting out each and every rectangle for the windows. Honestly..I thought of this mid-taping the windows into place. I wanted to bang my head against the wall. Bang. It. Against the wall. But...I just kept taping.
This brings me to my tape obsession. I tape everything first. Here's why: I have often been known to hot glue without first getting it where I wanted it. And me..being the perfectionist-can't leave-it-alone-until-its-in-the-exact-right-spot (refer to That Spot blog post for more on this topic).. I have had to rip down hot glued paper and start from scratch more times that I can count. Now this starting over from scratch business majorly cut into my Goodwill shopping time, so I needed to find a fix. ::magic music playing, as scotch tape rises us from a fog on a pedestal:: Scotch Tape. My hero. I now tape everything where I need it and hot glue after. This way..if I need to move it (which, of course I will).. it won't rip. Let's take a closer look at my scotch tape obsession...as well as my laziness to paint all the way to the top of my wall. "Aint' nobody got time for that" (one again, if you do not know this pop culture reference...we must chat. Now.)
Now that everything was taped and at the exact inch on my wall I wanted it, I moved on to my guided reading board. This is the place I have struggled with since leaving pre-k. I mean...centers, circle time, anecdotal records...I could do them in my sleep. But guided reading? Ummm......that's what my brain said....ummmm.......
In walks DeeDee Wills and DeAnna Jump. They are my kindergarten heroes. They are the ones I stood in line with to take a picture with at the TPT conference. And yes... I will frame it. I will put in on my desk. I will show all of my friends and make them ooh and ahh. I gave up shoe shopping time so I could devour their blogs and scour their TPT stores.
Sidenote: Devour, scour? Those are like $5.00 words. Giving up show shopping time. You can clap now.
I learned all about decoding strategies and readers workshop...not to mention the step by step guide for implementing guided reading and writer's workshop. I'm pretty sure I own every piece of curriculum they have written and I would gladly give up at least 3 of my vintage dresses to own whatever they write in the future. Like a good student, I tried to implement what I learned...here's my attempt.
For my groups lists, I will attach velcro to each kiddos name. This way if I need to move them into or out of a group I can do so without having to retype each color group. Or..you could laminate them and use an Expo marker (spokesperson..I should be their spokesperson) to write their names in. This way you can erase and add to as needed.
My decoding strategy frame was purchased as a set from Lakeshore...you can find it here. It is kind of like a fancy page protector (those words together are my perfect combination...girly words and office supply words. In love.) This makes it easy for me to switch out strategies, if one group needs to extra practice or another group is excelling and needs to bump ahead.
Each group has a place where I will put their decoding strategies. DeAnna Jump has it all lined out for you in her Guided Reading 101. It is my bible at this point.
Okay... now I'm really spent. I think I'm going to go binge watch a little SYTYCD. (A little freebie to anyone who can figure out the acronym and post it in my comments. Bonus points to anyone who names their favorite dancer( hint, hint) and it's the same as mine.)
Au revoir for now (my mother-in-law has her Masters in French...my husband is fluent in French..this is all I know. Hmmm...I should probably work on that.)