Taryn's Unique Learning Email Facebook Instagram Pinterest Bloglovin TPT Store Home About Me TPT Shop Freebies Contact

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Whew! Have You Come Up for Air?

Whew!  Has anyone come up for air yet?  Here in the Midwest, our school year is starting earlier and earlier. When I was a kid, we never started school until after Labor Day.  But for now, this 28 year veteran teacher is feeling the aches and pains of walking on concrete floors all day.  We had two work days at the beginning of the week and three days with kids.  Just the simple things like getting back into the habit of setting the alarm, packing your lunch, coming home and making dinner seem to be a huge chore these days.  Are you with me? (Perhaps that is rhetorical!)

Anyway, I am adjusting to sharing my Intervention Room with Sweet Katie!  I will refer to her that way as she is truly one of the kindest people I've ever met.  Our school is busting at the seams with employees to support our growing Special Ed and ESOL populations so we are sharing my former large space.  She is ESOL and I am Intervention so we shuttle groups in and our during our Intervention Block so neither of us have our caseloads yet to determine how it will be with our groups in the room. But we are optimistic with the set up and the carpeting that we will not disturb each other or cramp each other's style! Plus she brought me a Skinny Vanilla Latte on Friday to celebrate the end of the week! L*O*V*E !!!

So last year I decided when I moved into my new space (the former computer lab) that I would utilize the window by the entry to the room to display a sight word each week so my kiddos could learn their sight words. I decided to use window paint markers. While I liked the look, it faded over time and I never redid it....I just lived with it. (Have you ever been so tired you "lived with it"?  Well in honor of  my mascot and the best dog ever, I decided if I used Izzy's cute image, it would just make me smile every time I walked in and out of the room, and the kiddos love him too!   So I decided to make a "Password Sign" where I could display the word with Izzy's face on it. My intention was to take it to the copy shop and make it poster sized until I found out the poster would be like $40ish dollars.  While I was tempted, I really thought that was too pricey.  So I took my print back to school and used the beast of a poster maker. It only prints in B&W! Bummer.  But I decided to use it anyway to save some cash.  I hung it in the window and am actually kind of liking how it came out.  I am using a set of sight word cards this year with sentences and they are colored so that adds a pop of color to the window along with the super cool magnetic borders. I am thinking about backing the poster with color to fill the entire window or another border around to frame it in  but I just can't decide.

Anyway, I started thinking about how I truly loved the poster, even in B&W but thought perhaps I could share it with you in case you were looking for a "Password Display" sign.  So here is the link to the upload in my TPT store. Please leave me some love in my TPT store should you choose to download this sweet face!  This is what your download will look like in color! Pretty stinkin' cute right?   Password Poster... click here

And in case you love the sight word cards, they are from another fabulous TPT seller, Mrs. Kadeen Teaches! You can check them out here!   Sight Word Posters

Well, Happy Back to School to everyone. I will be back for another post as soon as I come up for air. I know you understand!  Have a fabulous school year.

Until Next Time,

Sunday, August 9, 2015

A Fun Sunday Project- Cheap Treat for Kids!

So like you, I have finally had a chance to get back into my classroom to prep for Back to School 2015.  We had new flooring put down in parts of our building so it was a "No Feet Zone" for the better part of the week and I was truly itching to get back into my space and start unpacking and getting organized. I am sharing my gargantuan space that I had all to myself last school year. It was a the former "Computer Lab" and since all computers are now on carts, there was no need to keep the room as the lab.  I made myself quite at home last year and now am working on cozying up in half of the space I had previously.

So, while I was in my room, I was cleaning out the pile of crayons from the last million years or so. I hate to throw them out but EVERYONE LOVES NEW CRAYONS RIGHT?  I had seen the project on Pinterest about chopping up the crayons into little pieces, melting them in molds to create rainbow crayons, and had been planning on trying it for ages. I have even had the silicone molds from IKEA for over a year and figured today was the day.  After all, a gal needs a fun project on a Sunday when the Hubs is a bit under the weather right?

So first I used my Xacto knife to make sure all wrappers were off of the crayons.  You would think they were all in little bits and pieces but they really weren't. Chop away! That was my goal!  I preheated my oven to 230 degrees.

After removing the wrappers, I found my junkiest knife in my drawer and began to chop them into bits.  The crayons had to be small since the molds were pretty small but I wanted to keep them large enough so the new crayons would have different flecks of color visible to the eye. I fit as many of the crayon bits into the molds as I could, providing a variety of color in each mold.  I set my two molds onto a cookie sheet and put them into the oven for 15 minutes.  At this point, keep an eye on them as your oven may vary. Pull them out when they look pretty melted and cool on the counter.  Some of my new crayons were a little murky, so I popped in a few colored bits into the hot wax last minute while still liquified to break up the brown! The silicone molds don't appear to clean up easily.  That's fine by me if they are color stained as this is the only thing I plan on doing with them.  So bakers beware!

Once completely cool, then they can be popped out of the molds and you are good to go. What a fun and CHEAP little treat for your kids.  I think my kids will love using these to write their sight words in a "RAINBOW STYLE"!   Happy creating!

Until Next Time,
Taryn's Unique Learning