Why I Became a Teacher

Why I Became a Teacher

I am happy to be participating in a blog hop with a group of stellar teachers, who like you and I, chose the same extraordinary profession, teaching.  Like every profession, experiences and destiny shape the paths we choose.  I hope you enjoy reading about the paths we took on our wondrous journey to become the teachers we are today.

I must confess, I was not born knowing I would one day be a teacher.  I did not hold a rosy dream of growing up and leading a group of struggling students to sound out the vowel sounds again and again and again.  In fact, my first go round with college had me pursuing a degree in architecture.  Sure I always loved school, played school as a child, did well in school, and had several amazing teachers whose teaching and wisdom shaped my life.  In fact, I remain in touch with these dedicated teachers, whom I now call friends.  But I was not planning on being a teacher.

Frustrated with school, I didn’t finish my degree, but worked for about ten years in the architectural field.  It wasn’t until AFTER I had my first child and was expecting my second, that I decided to go back to school.  I chose a field that would offer me insight into helping my own children succeed, give me time to spend with them during the summers, and allow me to work with children.  You see by then I had become intensely interested in children.  I wanted to eventually pursue a law degree so that I could fight to protect children I saw in abusive or neglectful situations.  

 

Alarming Statistics

 

 

Who reports child abuse?

 

It’s not a pretty subject.  Sorry, not sorry!  

I don’t recall the exact moment that fighting for these children became so important, but it was a life changing dream for me.  As you can see, once I entered the classroom, I realized that I was in the right place, at the right time, doing the right thing.  

Why I Became a Teacher

 

As a Special Education Teacher,  I was there to support and encourage students who were often misunderstood, disliked, or simply needed a positive advocate. I could be a consistent adult in their lives who loved hanging their artwork up (because mom just throws it away), could remind them to wear their coats when it was cold, and who could encourage them to reach for their own dreams by believing in themselves and reaching their academic potential.   No, I haven’t changed every child’s life, but I have fought the good fight and have seen lights go on, children that now walk the halls with smiles and confidence, and have been given enough hugs to warm my winter years.  

Teachers ARE heroes.  I am honored to be one of you.  We belong to an esteemed group of caring professionals.

I would love to read your comments about why you became a teacher!

Be sure to visit Kelly at My Fabulous Class to read why she became a teacher! 

 

  Sebrina

Teachers are Heroes TpT Sale! What’s in Your Cart?

Teachers are Heroes TpT sale

 

I am super excited about the newest, site wide sale on Teachers Pay Teachers!  I have a ton of resources on my wishlist.  I will share a few of them with you today!

Resource 1

My students are currently studying fractions. I found the most awesome resource for fractions in the form of these interactive notebook activities.  I can’t wait to get them in the hands of my students!

Not so Wimpy Teacher

Click on the photo to visit her store.

 

2

 

Evil Math Wizard has the perfect resource to accompany this product.  Task cards with real life photos of fractions!  These are perfect for any student studying fractions, but my special needs students will definitely benefit from these visual cards!

Evil Math Wizard task cards

Click the photo to find this resource.

 

3

 

I fell in love with this bundle of graphing activities as soon as I saw them.  They will be a real deal during the sale!  They are perfect for bringing in real world data collection in kindergarten and first grade.  Mrs Plemons Kindergarten has never let me down with her resources.

Mrs Plemons Kindergarten Graphing

Click the photo to find this resource.

 

4

 

Another great find is by Teacher Treasure Hunter.  Her year round collection of poetry and posters are high on my wish list!

 

Teacher Treasure

Click the photo to find this resource.

 

5

 

I have a ton of clip art on my wish list too!  Aren’t these the cutest farm animals!

 

Click the photo to find this resource.

Click the photo to find this resource.

Well, that isn’t the end of my wish list, but probably the end of my budget!   What’s on your wish list?  Don’t forget to add the code Heroes before you check out!

Sebrina

Special thanks to 2 Smart Chicks for the slide background, Hello fonts, and Charlotte’s Clips for the graphics


Shout Out to Tunstall’s Teaching Tidbits!

Teaching Time

Click Graphic to visit the original post on Tunstall’s Teaching Tidbits Blog.

 

Have you ever been so excited to read a blog post and try something out in your classroom?  Well, I read Reagan Tunstall’s Post on Teaching Time and could not wait to try her tips!  You have got to read her post and grab the freebies she designed to supplement her ideas.  You can find her post HERE.

I work with some wonderful, special needs students.  Telling analog time has been such a struggle for them.  After trying her ideas out today, I could literally see some light bulbs coming on!

Telling Time with Tunstall's Teaching Tidbits ideas

First we worked together to create the large student made clock shown above.  Her genius idea was using groups of 5 unifix cubes to provide a visual of the 5 minute intervals between each clock number.  Not only were the cubes a great visual the students could touch the cubes as they counted and/or I could lift and drop the cubes adding in auditory cues.   I used two different colors for the clock hands which was a great visual as you will see later.  We were also able to talk about the major points on the clock (12, 3, 6, and 9) that aid in telling time.

Telling Time with White Boards

This is about the time I was seeing some of those beautiful light bulbs starting to go off!  #teachersfavoritething

Using color coding as a telling time strategy.

Color coding strategy as a visual cue for telling time.

Discriminating between the hour and minute hand can be difficult.  A great visual cue was this graphic which coordinated with the colors of our “hour” and “minute” hand.

Independently telling time

After LOTS of “I do” and “We do” practice, the kids got a chance to move, spread out, and independently read and write the digital time to match the analog clock I set on the table.

Making Individual Student Clocks

 

Next, we “borrowed” another idea from Reagan Tunstall.  Each student created an individual clock.  We used the small sticky notes cut in half.  I think it really helped the students understand the relationship of the numbers on the clock. 

 

Telling Time

We started by labeling the 4 major clock points and practiced reading the minutes to the quarter and half hour.

 

Practicing telling time to the quarter and half hour.

Students set the time on their clocks

Students were able to manipulate their clock to match the times that I called out or wrote on the board.  

I am really grateful to have found this post at the perfect time and firmly believe my students benefited from these strategies.  If you have students that struggle with telling time, be sure to head over and read her post.  She has some wonderful freebies, like the clock hands shown above, which my students are using.

Do you have any favorite strategies for teaching time in your classroom?

Sebrina

 

TPT Product Swap Blog Hop 2015!

This month I had the opportunity to participate in a Teachers Pay Teachers Product Swap with fellow Canadian blogger Diamond Mom. This was such a treat because we were really focusing on money, and the products I was able to try in my classroom were for American money.!

Slide1 cropped

Both of her products depicted above were so useful in our study of counting money.  The first one, “How Much is This?,” contained posters of varying amounts of money and the equivalent amount in another form. For example: 4 quarters = $1.00.  The product also includes printable sheets for counting money.  I decided to copy mine on card stock and place them in individual sleeve protectors.  This way each child could use the same sheet printed in colored ink.  We found that expo markers were the easiest to erase.  Not only does this product include counting coins, but it includes realistic paper bills for counting.  Printable money and coins are included.  I used the paper money printables with the product below. You can find it by clicking {HERE}.

Show me the money!

Show Me the Money!” was the second product I tried out.  This set of printables is for figuring out the amount of money needed for shopping.  Again, I placed these in sleeve protectors after printing them in color.  I just think color is much more engaging for the kiddos.  

My students had a blast counting out different combinations of money for purchasing the items shown on their worksheet.  They had so much fun, I don’t think they realized they were learning!  You can find this product by clicking {HERE}.

Counting money 2 ways

Showing more than one way to count out money for a purchase.

Show me the money

 Some students counted change instead of using all paper money!

Show me the money!

Using change to replace some of the paper money.

I would highly recommend using this great product as part of your money unit in your classroom!  Thanks Diamond Mom for all the fun money counting practice you provided us!

Diamond Mom is trying out my Winter Vowel Sorts shown below.  

Burke's Special Kids Winter Vowel Sorts

 

Winter Vowel Sorts

Winter Vowel Sorts

You can enter to win a free copy of this product by entering the Rafflecopter below!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Sebrina Thanks to Krista Wallden for the arrow clip art and Khrys Bosland for the font!


February Favorite Things!

Once again I’m linking up with Teaching Trio’s fun Favorite Things Linky.  Just visit their page to join in or read all the fun posts for February!

Favorite Things Linky Button (1)  

Now on to my Favorite Things for February! 

Favorite Things Linky

 

I have a few students who are reading, reading, reading!  I found the perfect magazine for one of my fifth grade girls, as well as one of my special needs fourth graders.  They are going to love reading and completing the activities in these magazines.  Now I need to find some for my boys!

We finally got our raise for the year, so it was time to stock up on some of my favorite classroom necessities!  Pens, pens and more pens!  I should have put the piles of erasers I purchased in the photo too!

What’s February without some special Valentine’s Candy?  You might notice I grabbed a bag of chocolate for myself!  Actually, it is for students who earn perfect scores on their AR tests!  I plan to do a math activity with the candy hearts.  This year I grabbed the large hearts since they will be easier for special needs students to manipulate. I hear there are some hearts with letters instead of messages.  If only I could find them in a local store!

Here’s wishing you a wonderful February!

Sebrina

 

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