Monday, July 28, 2014

Show Me Your Teacher Bag!!

I recently found Jen at Teacher by the Beach, and wouldn't you know that I found her through her Linky Party about teacher bags!?!  If you know me, then you know that I have a "bag thing" ( well as a shoe thing, a Stella & Dot thing, a colored pens thing...oh jeez...), so it's sort of perfect that I have stumbled upon her blog for this linky :) I LOVE IT!!!  **contain yourself Nadya**

During student teaching, I went through a number of bags until I found one that minimized how many bags I actually needed to bring to school each day.  I mean really people, at some point in the beginning of last year I had my purse, my lunch bag, a small tote for my student teaching materials, and a Sterilite container that clipped shut to carry materials that I needed for my lessons.  Thank goodness for Pinterest - saved my life as usual.  I had never heard of the Thirty-One Organizing Utility Tote until I saw this pin by Tiffany at The Nest Effect...

That photograph changed my year!  I immediately got myself one of those amazing totes and stocked it right up with everything but the kitchen sink.  Though I have an obsession with fun things like bags and pens, I have an aversion to all things too busy, so Thirty-One gave me the best of both worlds with a pattern in boring muted tones.  Here's my Organizing Utility Tote.  It's empty now, but you can see how it can be home to a medium sized, open-top filing container.  I got mine at the Container Store.  I also LOVE all the pockets that this bag has.  SPOILER ALERT ----> the newest model of this bag has a zipper on the top!!!

The fun doesn't stop there folks!  Before Christmas last year the hubs realized that I had an issue organizing my materials, so under the tree sat this beautifully bowed box...

Now, I wouldn't say that I am necessarily a label snob, but I do love my Coach.  I haven't really gotten into MK bags, or Vera Bradley...but Coach, well, Coach has my heart! <3

That lovely box held a treasure inside - a treasure that I decided to wait for a special occasion to break first year teaching :) New start, new bag!  So this year I will add a little color to my life and bring this baby to school....

It's so pretty, and though it was empty before I took these photos, I stuffed it so that you can see how roomy it is.  There are also two pockets inside for pens/phone/wallet/etc. and a private pocket with a zipper.  Oh be still my heart <3

Well, those are the bags :) I can't wait to see everyone else's little (errr, or not so little) beauties!!

Monday, July 21, 2014

My 1st Monday Made It

Okay bloggy friends (whoever you may be out there in cyber world), it has been two whole months since my first blog post.  LOTS has happened so far this summer - I have been hired to teach firsties this fall (YAY!), and so I have been getting centers ready, organizing books, shopping, shopping, and more shopping (it's sort of fun to build your first classroom - hehehe...though not so fun for our bank account - oops), and making all sorts of things that I have hoarded in my Pinterest boards over the past few years.  I thought it would be appropriate to get this blogging party moving by participating in my very first linky party.  Hopefully I do this thing correctly...

Aaaaaand here we go folks...

I have seen firsthand how helpful whisper/phonics phones can be for emerging readers, so one of my first summer projects was to make a class set for my future firsties.  I found them all over pinterest, but no one really had their list of materials posted.  Finally, I found Teacherific in Second Grade. My materials differed from hers just slightly.  My list of materials included:

* 1" PVC pipe (save $$ and buy the 10' long pipe, then cut it into 3.5" pieces)
* 1" PVC elbows (Home Depot sells bags of 10)
* Fun duct tape (one roll was more than enough for 25 phones)

At home depot they only provided a hand saw to cut the pipe, so my husband cut the 10' PVC pipe into pieces that would fit into my tiny hatchback.  He then cut the 3.5" pieces using a circular saw (makes for a super clean cut) at home.  I love my handyman hubby :) Beware, putting the phones together requires a little muscle power!  I had the hubby put together about half a few of the phones because my shoulder blades had had enough!  

These will fit nicely into my Rainbow Chalkboard themed classroom (check out Schoolgirl Style's other awesome themes too)!

Up next was another Pinterest project of organizational value.  I have been known to display some OCD symptoms organizational savvy!  Throughout my year of student teaching, one of my biggest challenges was finding a way to stay organized in a classroom that was not my own.  At home and at work, I NEED to be able to have a place for everything.  "Organized chaos" makes me a little nuts - I just need the organized piece to be at my best.  My teacher tool box (which will soon be moving into my new room) has helped to keep my go-to supplies organized over the last year, but now it was time to make a home for papers and student supplies...

And so the famous Copy, File, Grade Sterilite bins come to life in my world :) This time Seusstastic Classroom Inspirations labels fit in quite beautifully with my theme.  Thank you Mel D - your products are AWESOME!!!  I used her fabulous labels for my color station as well!

Okay, okay, so I didn't really "make" much with these bins, but I printed, laminated, cut, and assembled ;)

My final Monday Made It project was a HUGE task!  Over the last two years, I have not only been hoarding pins, but I have also been hoarding books and other classroom necessities.  Everything was shoved in random bins to keep my house from being overcome by elementary school "things."  As I mentioned earlier, I don't do well with organized chaos - it literally gives me anxiety (I know, I know - I need to accept it because I will be working with kids, who can be quite messy for crying out loud!!!)!  So once again I didn't necessarily make anything - but I did clean a whole lot up!   Here is the final product...well part of it...there may or may not be other boxes in bins floating around my basement waiting to move out of my house and into my classroom...

Thank you for stopping by my baby of a blog, and my very first Monday Made It.  Tara, I hope I linked up with you correctly.  I also hope that I correctly included the links to the fabulous ideas and materials that I used in these projects.  Though my blog is beautiful, thanks to Christi @ Design by Christi I know NOTHING very little about blogging and HTML.

Till next time!!