Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Pencil Organization

I have decided to update my pencil (can) holder. Last year they were in tin cans covered and labeled. I liked them but they weren't completely functional. I say that because the kiddos had to reach into the can and then decide if that pencil tip would work for them. Sounds weird, but I know you have the one or two kiddos who HAVE to have the SHARPEST pencil in the batch. One little darling  in particular would pull out a handful, search and search, and then place the ones that didn't make the cut back. And on some occasions the tips would break and the rest of the class would pull back an already broken pencil. (I have a strict lead down rule so there are no accident impalements!)

So I searched on my second favorite teacher website, Proteacher.net. (second to Pinterest of course!) I typed in "pencil can labels" and found the cutest label! I immediately knew what I would do! The label was shared for FREE from the fabulous Peace, Love and Learning blog. Go check her out!

I bought these two white bins from Wal-Mart.
I used my handy dandy laminator and some scrapbook paper to decorate.

I hope these work better for them since they will see the pencil before they pick it up!

What do you use in your classroom for pencils?  I'd love to hear your pencil procedure!
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Personal Laminator

Well I broke down this week and bought a Scotch Thermal Laminator. I have been seeing these for a couple years now. Yes, my school has a laminator but they can be pretty stingy about refilling the roll. As a new teacher I feel like I'm always finding things I wish I had laminated. Now I don't have to feel guilty any longer and I can laminate away!

I picked it up at Wal-Mart for $27 and some change. The refill sheets were a bit pricey for 50 sheets @ $14.99. I have read on various teacher blogs before I bought this and plan on purchasing refills from Amazon from now on. I read on a blog that she bought 100 sheets for $15. That's double for the same price! (See, this is why I love teaching math!)

I immediately went home and started playing! Here are a few pics of somethings I laminated.

And some shots of it in action!

I like the sheets because I can squeeze all the little pieces in that I need.

Now I will show you that the to pencil labels I laminated were pretty close together and didn't laminate the best.

I know the picture isn't the best quality, but I just ran the sheet through the laminator again to give it an extra "squeeze" and it seemed to do the trick. But if this doesn't bother you - I highly recommend this product. *Go to my next post to see the finished product for my pencil bins and labels!

Happy laminating!!!

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3 Drawer shelf & Modpodge

Here's another idea for your classroom organization!!!

I have created this little beauty to sit next to my desk and keep papers off my desk! (Sometimes known as the black hole.) There are two file drawers because I partner teach with Ms. Rodgers so I needed to keep her kiddo's stuff better organized.

I took this idea from Pinterest of course... Here is the picture I was inspired by... Go check out her post at http://www.hillarykiser.blogspot.com/2012_06_01_archive.html
She's also got some great ideas for teachers! Love her blog!
NO PAPERS ON THE DESK! Eliminate the tower of papers on your desk.

My modpodge shelf project went so well I decided to dress up a 3 Drawer shelf I picked up at Wal-Mart the other day. I thought I would be happy with spray painting it - but my CDO (.....OCD in alphabetical order!!) couldn't live with the small amount of chipping that took place.

So enter modpodge!!! And after the first strip or two of this patterned paper I KNEW I had to cover it entirely.

Isn't it so cute??!!?!

Well..... if you haven't guessed already.... that wasn't quite enough. :) More pinterest inspiration and I had to add cute labels to the drawers.
So I used my priniting on patterned paper technique I showed you in my previous post.

I printed a template using Microsoft word and textboxes... BTW I got my super cute font FREE from kevinandamanda.com - it is called Smiley Monster. LOVE IT!

Cut the patterned paper I wanted to size and made sure it fit....

Re-printed without the textbox outlines and was done!

What do you think??

Thanks for stopping by!!!

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How to Print on Patterend Paper

In my last post I showed you my Teacher Toolbox. When I was looking for ideas on Pinterest for this project, I noticed different bloggers posting about the amount of paper they wasted to get their toolbox to turn out just right. How terrible!!! Trust me - as a scrapbooker - any wasted patterned paper is a tragedy.

I wanted to show you an easy way to print on patterned paper when you only want to print on a small piece... This can be done on a shape, tab dividers, labels for a shower or party, or on birthday cards! (Click here for my post about the birthday cards I made for my class!)

First I laid out the size boxes I needed in Microsoft word and set them with one of my favorite free fonts - Howser. Once I was happy with the font/size/spacing I printed the page with the text boxes outline included. This will be the template for the patterned paper.

Next I cut down my patterned paper to fit the box that was printed on my sheet.

Next I taped the patterned paper down. But before I did that I put the tape on my forearm (or cheek!) to keep it from being TOO sticky on the patterned paper. No one wants to tear their pretty paper!! (Consider it a mini-facial while crafting!!) :)
I don't know if the picture shows - but I barely put the tape on my patterned paper. (You can always hold your paper and template up to a light source to double check that your tape won't get any ink on it when you print again.)

Once all the patterned paper I needed was taped down I ran it back through the printer AFTER I turned OFF the outline of the textboxes. This way it only prints the words I wanted and I know it will print it exactly where I want it.  (Sorry if the bigger font was too dramatic... but it's a biggee!)

Lastly I CAREFULLY pulled off the patterned paper. And wah-lah! You have personalized patterned paper!

Once you get the hang of this you can use it on practically every label in your classroom! I know it "wastes" ink by making the template... but incase you don't know... remanufactured ink is dirt cheap on Amazon. I have been using it for awhile now. It is definetly something worth looking into!

Thanks for stopping by!

Please let me know if my instructions did not make sense in any way or if I can be of any help!
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Teacher Toolbox

Like most teacher pinterest-ers (Yes, I like to make up words!) I have jumped on the "teacher toolbox" craze! I found the idea on Pinterest of course, but I found more details and FAQ from Mrs. Rojas on Create Teach Share.

I bought my toolbox from my local Lowes for $16 and some change! You can't be that!
It is actually called the "Stack-On 22 Drawer Storage Cabinet". I was surprised how "small" it was. In pictures it always looks bigger. But this little gem is actually the perfect size. It is roughly 9.6" long, 19.3" wide, and the drawers are 6.3" deep.
I got it home and started making labels for it right away! I used Mrs. Rojas dementions to make my own Word document to print my labels. Just visit my TpT store to get an editable version or click here.

In case you are wondering the font I used for my labels was FREE from kevinandamanda.com called Howser.

I will post an easy "How to" with my next post to show you an easy way to print on patterned paper. It saved me a lot of paper!

Here is my tool box after I loaded my patterned paper in it:

But nooooooo - more pinterest searching and I got the itch to paint it.

Thanks to my ever-so-patient hubby ... Here is the final product! I can't wait to put it in my classroom. I will post pictures once my room is complete!

Be sure to check out my next post to see how to print easily on patterned paper! Thanks for stopping in!
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New Shelf + Modpodge

I know I needed a small shelf for my classroom to fit under my window.... So I went to Wal-Mart and purchased this little guy.

To make my 3-ring binders fit I had to have the hubby drill extra holes. I know there is a super small slot in between the two shelves but I think they'll be handy with some of my taller teacher manuals that may not fit on the shelves. I'll just slide them in horizontally!

Well I've been at home pinterest-ing and experiencing borderline boredom... So insert scrapbook paper and


Here's the two shelves before I placed them in.

I think I have a little bit too much time on my hands this summer..... Someone get me back in my classroom!!! :)
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Monday, July 9, 2012

State Standards & Address Labels

Have you ever been on Pinterest and had that A-HA! moment? Well my A-HA! moment was when I saw this genius idea to put my State Standards on address labels!!

Pinned Image

The original poster uses this with her students but I think I will just keep it for me. I love this idea because as soon as I print off my lesson plan I can slap the corresponding standard to it and be in my merry way! I'm sure if I continue a standard from the day before I will just note that.
I think this is great because I can visually see the skills I've taught and still need to hit. It could also be a great pacing tool for some of you out there that may not have district pacing guides.

This is the last year my district will be following our own state standards - next year we will be completely implementing Common Core. I still see myself using this system even with Common Core next year.

When does your school plan on solely using Common Core?
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Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Blog Design love!

I've always wondered how everyone gets these BEAUTIFUL backgrounds and such on their blogs... So I have spent most of the evening searching and editing while the hubby watches golf.... so I have to share where I found some blog background ideas/tips from!


Wow! Her website has been SOOOOO helpful! If you are new to blogging like me, check her sight out!

Also! I'd like to share with you where I learned about blog dividers! :) I am loving this too!!


I am super thankful for all the wonderful bloggers out there who share their knowledge with us! I hope I can return the favor some day!
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