Wednesday, July 29, 2015

5th Grade Math Assessment Resource

Whenever summer a comes to an end, the first thing that's on my mind is how I can get myself as prepared as possible for the upcoming school year.  I'm back in pre-planning mode and I am really excited to share a resource with you that I think would REALLY help to save you some time this year.
I have recently bundled together all of my assessment resources into a MEGA BUNDLE.
It includes 7 units, each containing:
- a 20 question multiple choice pre and post-test (both are different but assess the same standards) for summative assessment
- student goals sheet for student goal-setting
- study guide for test preparation
- quizzes by standard for formative assessment
- Excel data sheets to provide data to drive your instruction, group students for differentiation, and chart student growth
- Video tutorial on how to use the Excel data sheets
- Name Tag Math Centers for review

Check out my video to see more detail about each of these and how you can use them in your classroom:

 I hope you this video was helpful in explaining what this resource includes and that you have a great new school year!

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Terry's Top 10 Tuesday: Why I Teach 5th Grade

This week for Terry's Top 10 Tuesday, I want to tell you why I teach 5th grade and I want to hear why YOU teach what you teach!

Since we all teach different subjects, I've created a graphic for all of the subjects/areas I could think of that you may teach.  Go to my GOOGLE DRIVE to grab the graphic for your grade/subject.  If you teach something that I don't have a graphic for, E-mail me and I will be happy to make it for you really quick so that you can participate.  

10.  Our Social Studies standards are AWESOME.
9.  My students understand most of my jokes.
8.  At our school, 5th grade is the last year of elementary school so we don't have to make class lists.
7.  I get to use historical fiction for novel studies, allowing me to cover ELA standards while also reinforcing our Social Studies content.
6.  Taking a sick day is a lot easier because my students can tell the sub exactly what to do and how our day runs (as long as it's the truth!).
5.  My students are able to take on a lot of classroom responsibility so our class runs like a well-oiled machine.
4.  Parents are much more laid back as their kids get older :)
3.  My students can work independently a lot of the time, allowing me to spend some one-on-one time with others.
2.  I can incorporate challenging, creative ideas that they are old enough to handle.
1.  They are old enough to understand when you are having a rough day, but young enough to still give you a hug and make you a cute card to get through it.

Tuesday is my first day of pre-planning, followed by the first day of school on Wednesday, August 5.  I'm so excited to meet my new group of 5th graders.

What do you teach and why do you love it so much?

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Terry's Top 10 Tuesday: Why I Became a Teacher

Hey everybody!  I'm so excited to share my second week of Terry's Top Ten Tuesday!  This week's topic is the:
Here is my list:

10.  Having a more casual dress code than Corporate America.  
In my days of interning in corporate America, I hated having to wear pants suits or anything formal.  I never felt comfortable in those outfits.  With teaching, business casual is much more comfortable to me, and I especially love when we get a surprise jeans day here and there :)
9.  Having summers off.
Let's be honest.  A teacher's schedule is something to envy.  Yes, we DO work after school, on weekends, etc., but having the ability to have long holidays off with your family, a summer to work an extra job if you choose, and being able to sometimes make a doctor's appointment after school is pretty appealing.
8.  I'm a mini celebrity.
Do you ever have students of yours that see you walking down the hall during the day and they are waving at you excitedly even though you literally just walked them to lunch 5 minutes ago?  It's like they never saw you the entire day and they are so enthralled that you are there.  It's kind of strange when you think about it, but that's what kids do.  They adore you and want to show you how excited they are to see you all the time.  I bet that someone over in the accounting department wouldn't do that if I walked over to the break room in a corporate job.  (Well, hopefully not)  I also have 20+ Valentines every single year.  It's incredible!
7. Every day is unique.
Whether a kid throws up in class, there's an unannounced fire drill, or there's surprise cake in the work room, a day at school is never the same and infrequently monotonous.
The days FLY by.
When you truly make great plans and are helping your students with their work, before you know it, the final bell is ringing.  I could never spend my day sitting behind a desk.
I have the ability to be creative every day.
Planning lessons and making them engaging takes a lot of skill and creativity.  I love trying to find ways to get my students interested, even in the subjects they dislike the most.
4.  Working with kids can be a lot of fun.
Kids…they say the most interesting things…whether it's a funny joke, or they realize you're having a bad day and they say something sweet that turns it all around.  We all have lots of stories.
3.  It was a childhood dream of mine.
When I was in elementary school I used to come home and I would teach a fake class of students in my bedroom.  I had a class list and even made up spelling tests in which I had certain kids who always did well and some who always got the answers wrong.  I even made my mom buy me a pull down map from Rand McNally with a pointer to put in my "classroom."  I was always taking things to another level.  I even have a tape recording of an interview that my grandfather did with me when I was in 3rd grade.  Two of the questions he asked were:
  1. Where do you want to go to college?  Answer:  Penn State.
  2. What do you want to be when you grow up?  Answer:  A teacher.
I accomplished both of those.
2.  Wanting to make a difference in someone's life.
This past year I had a student who had lots of trouble, especially with teachers.  At the end of the year, he wrote me a note and said, "Out of all the teachers I've had, you never gave up on me."  If that's how he feels, then every second of the year was worth it.  
1.  That moment when you see the "light bulb" go off in a kid's head and realize that they finally "got" it.
It has happened to all of us.  When you have a student who is struggling to master a skill and you FINALLY find the perfect way to show it, explain it, or whatever works…and they GET IT…and you can see the moment that they truly get it.  That's priceless.  

This list was a great reminder to me of why I got into the profession of teaching.  It has definitely become more difficult than I am told it was in the past, but it is STILL a great career to have and if you love it, then it's the right one.  If you don't, then there are plenty of other fields that you can go into.  

Don't forget that you can write your own Top 10 on the topic above on your blog and link your post up with me here:
An InLinkz Link-up

Join me next Tuesday for the next edition of Terry's Top 10 Tuesday.  As always, I will be announcing the topic on my Instagram next Sunday, so make sure you follow me @terrysteachingtidbits so that you can link up!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Terry's Top 10 Tuesday: Vegas

I'm so excited for the first edition of my new series, Terry's Top 10 Tuesday!  If you don't know what this is, head to my initial blog post to get the details!

Our first Top 10 is:

Here we go!

10.  Gambling
Okay, I'm obsessed with gambling.  Unfortunately, like last year, I went home a loser.  As much as I love it, I just never know when to quit!
9.  Fancy dinners
I had a wonderful dinner with some of my great friends at The Primary Chalkboard to celebrate 2 new babies (one born and one on the way) within our group :)
8.  Meeting new TpT friends
I met so many new people this year, both ones I have collaborated with online in the past, and those who I was meeting for the very first time.  I even met another 5th grade teacher from my district!
7.  Finally getting to meet some bloggers and creators who I love!
Is anyone obsessed with Krista Wallden from Creative Clips?!  Well, I was delighted to find that she was not only beautiful in person, but one of the sweetest people that I met!
6.  Inspiration from the TpT team
How many companies can say that they have a CEO who speaks 10 languages and genuinely wants the feedback of employees before making important company decisions?  This is one of the few companies in which the "bosses" are more concerned with pleasing their employees than themselves.  I love being part of an organization that listens.  I mean, the fact that Amy's title is "Director of Seller Happiness" just says it all!  I am so proud and humbled to be a part of the TpT team.
5.  Gaining new information from TpT sessions
I loved learning more about working on my brand, getting design tips, and finding new ways to market my products and blog.  I love that not only do I get to be a teacher, but I get to be a business woman as well.  How empowering!
4.  Instagramming!
Need I say more?  Instagram has become so fun :)
3.  My gambling buddy, Anna from Simply Skilled in Second
This girl became one of my favorite people last year in Vegas, and she didn't disappoint this year.  Together we did some lunchtime roulette, and I even tried to hop a ride on her new "Jazzy", even though I didn't get a chance to snap a pic.  Poor Anna was so excited that TpT founder, Paul, jumped in to get a picture with our group, that she hopped in the air, landed on her ankle, and ended up rupturing her Achilles.  Workers' comp anybody?  Lol.

2.  Spending time with my Primary Chalkboard Friends!
These girls (and guys) are seriously incredible.  This group of bloggers have so many amazing ideas, but are genuinely some of the NICEST and fun people I have ever met.
1.  Paul Edelman!  
If it weren't for TpT founder, Paul, I would not have found my renewed excitement in teaching a few years ago.  As someone who started out with a plan to be in business and switched to teaching, I love being able to have the option to take charge of my own career and success.  He has truly changed teachers' and students' lives.  He was right when he said that he has no doubt that we will change education as we know it.

What an amazing trip!  If you didn't go this year, I highly suggest that you go next year!

Join me next week for the second installment of Terry's Top 10 Tuesday.  Look for the topic Sunday on Instagram!  @terrysteachingtidbits

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Terry's Top 10 Tuesday - New Weekly Blog Series

Summer is almost over and I'm back from the incredible Teachers Pay Teachers Conference in Vegas!  I'm feeling renewed, refreshed, inspired, and MOTIVATED to begin a new school year.  One of my goals this year is to get back and refocused on blogging so that I can share ideas, tips, advice, and resources that I'm using in my classroom.

To kick off my new school year of blogging, I've decided to start a weekly blog series that I'm calling:

This series will be featured on my blog every Tuesday and will contain a different topic each week.  Since I'm just one person with my own set of ideas and tips, I've decided that it would be fun to allow others to share their own ideas as well.  YOU can participate in Terry's Top 10 Tuesday as well and share your top 10 responses to each week's topic with my weekly linky party.

Here's how it will work:

On Sunday, I will reveal the topic via video on my Instagram account @terrysteachingtidbits.  This way, if you want to participate, you will have plenty of time to write your blog post before Tuesday.  I will share the graphic for the topic on my Facebook page, so go there to grab the image.

On Tuesday, I will schedule my post for 8 am EST.  You can post yours whenever you want (try to at least make it on Tuesday :) ) and link your blog post using the Inlinkz button at the bottom of my post.

What should you do now?

1.  I'm ready to share this week's topic, so head to my Instagram (make sure you follow me so that you can see the new video easily each Sunday) to find out what to write about.  I will try to get the video up today by 8 pm EST.

2.  Head to my Facebook page to grab the image for this week's topic.

3.  Start writing your blog post with your Top 10 answers!  Make sure that you schedule your post for Tuesday.  Once mine is posted at 8 am, you can add your post to the linky.  

I'm so excited for this series and this week's topic, and I hope that you'll join me so that we can all share our fantastic ideas :).  Have a great week!