Global Read Aloud

Have you heard of the Global Read Aloud? I just heard about it, and it sounds like such a wonderful activity to do with your class. Starting October 5th, you begin reading a book with your students over a six week period. Other classes around the world are reading the same book, and then you can connect with them and discuss the book. You can make as many connections as you want, and put as much or as little time into it as you want.

I think this project would have so many positive benefits in a classroom. It will help your students continue to gain a love of reading, and also connect with other classes around the world. I think it would be great to just choose 1 class to connect with, and then continue connecting throughout the year. You can discuss the book, but you can also learn a lot about other cultures, the way other schools are run, and the thoughts and beliefs of other people from different places.

Here is a class in Madison, Wisconsin connecting with other students.

What a great activity! There are a few different books to choose from, so you really could do this for any grade you teach. There is also a Pinterest page that has some ideas for lessons and activities to go along with the books here. 

If you want to join in and be a part of the Global Read Aloud 2015, click here.

Monday Made It August 24th

I am a little late on Monday Made It, but I wanted to share what I have done this week.

On Friday, my twin girls turned 2. Time goes by so fast! I can't believe they are already 2! Anyway, we are going to Disneyland in October, so we decided to do a Minnie Mouse-Themed birthday party. I think it turned out really cute. 

These cupcakes are my FAVORITE! Didn't they turn out cute!? Also, they are beet cupcakes (I know, it sounds disgusting). But they are delicious. They are so moist and chocolatey. Once I made them for my students and no one had any idea they had beets in them.

Ok, I didn't make this cake. I was going to make more cupcakes, but ran out of time, so I just ordered a cake.

This is us. I made those cute dresses and hats for the girls. I didn't get a great picture of them, but I am planning on going to take some pictures this week some time. 

Whole Class Behavior Incentives

I think using incentive programs can help with classroom behavior so much. Plus, it gives the kids something to work toward and look forward to.
For my behavior incentives, I like to do a whole class, small group, and individual reward system. Today I am going to share 5 of my favorite ideas for whole class reward systems.

1. Marble Jar

The marble jar has been around since teaching began, I think. If you somehow haven't heard of it, the concept is simple: you put a marble in a jar when the class is being good, and when it is full they get a reward (generally a party).

The reason I really like the marble jar is because it helps a lot with hallway behavior. Any time we walked in the halls, I would hold up 3 fingers, and take down a finger if the class got too loud. However many fingers I still had up when we got where we were going is how many marbles they got to put in the jar. If we got down to 0 fingers then we had to go back to the class and try again, and they did not get any marbles. It worked really well for keeping the class quiet and orderly in the halls. I also did this for assemblies and specialties.


I found this cute BINGO game on tpt and my students loved it! All the specialty teachers in our school give the class ratings on how well they did in five different categories. They got a score of 1-5, with 5 being the best. If the class got all 5's, they would get to draw a bingo card. Then once they got a bingo (on the board it spells PRIZE instead of BINGO) they would get a reward:

P- Popsicle Day
I-Inside Games
Z-Zoo Day (bring your favorite stuffed animal to school)
E-Extra Recess

The product and pictures are from Miss Kindergarten:

You can find the Behavior Bingo on TPT by clicking here. 
3. Mr. Potato Head

This is a simple but cute idea. Get a Mr. Potato head and all the pieces. For good behavior, you put pieces on and for bad behavior you take them off. When Mr. Potato Head is all put together, the class gets a reward.

Image and Mr. Potato Head idea found here.

4. Bag of Popcorn

I think this one is a lot of fun. Put the popcorn bag up on the wall. Any time the class is being good they get a piece of popcorn. When the bag is full, they get a popcorn party (or you could do popcorn during read-aloud time or silent reading time).

This is available free for a limited time in my store. Click HERE!

5. Popsicle Sticks

I read a good idea somewhere about using popsicle sticks. You put a bunch of colored popsicle sticks in a jar and write rewards on a few of them. When the class is being especially well-behaved, draw a popsicle stick. If it is blank, you put it in a bag, and when there are 20 sticks in the bag the class gets a reward. If it has a reward, they will receive that reward some time during the week. The rewards can be simple, like watch a social studies or science movie, have a dance party (just 1-2 songs), play a game at the end of the day, etc. I like the element of chance in getting an instant reward. That makes it exciting every time you draw a popsicle stick.

Image from this website

There are so many fun ideas for behavior incentives. Hopefully some of these will be useful in your class this year. Keep an eye out for my post on small group and individual incentives.

What are some of your favorite whole-class incentives that have worked in your classes?

First Day: Tried and True

Hello! Today I am linking up with Chrissie from the Undercover Classroom.  We are sharing tried and true ideas for the first day of school. Head to the link-up to get lots of new ideas for your first day of school.

I am currently working on getting a bunch of my first day activities up on TPT, so hopefully I get get those up there within the next week or two. I decided to post my first day schedule so you can see exactly what I do. The first day is a LOT of procedures and routines. Let me know if you have questions about any of the things I do!

When I was teaching, I got pretty much all of the books for my class library from garage sales. You can find KILLER deals. One year I found The Recess Queen. This is such a great story to help go over recess rules and appropriate behavior with your class. In my pack I am going to include a "Who, What, When, Where, How, Why" retelling page, a page where you can write your own recess rules as a class, a page for students to write ideas of what to do when someone is mean or bossy, and many more. It will be a great resource!  Here is a sneak peek at one of the pages from my Recess Queen pack:

If you want to be notified when this pack is available, follow my store on TPT by clicking the picture above and then clicking "follow" on my page. 

***UPDATE*** This unit is now available! Click here to see it.

Good luck with back to school! Hopefully some of my ideas will be helpful to you!