Monday, August 11, 2014

Teacher Toolbox

I have seen these popping up on my pinterest feed.  A colleague made one a few years ago, and I love it.  These toolboxes are a great way to put a lot of your supplies in one place.  If you are like me, you have supplies in drawers, cups, bins, and well.....just all over your desk!

Well I bought my box Sunday night, and I fixed it all up that night.

The box:
I bought the box from Lowes.  At our home depot, you could only order them online.  I got the 39 drawer unit.  There was also an 18 and 22 unit (they were out of the 22).  I have a lot of stuff, so I went with the 39.  It was less than $20.

The labels:
There are labels you can buy from teachers pay teachers, but I had some time, so I went ahead and created what I needed myself.  I found a great blog where a teacher posted her box. Mrs. Rojas blogspot is a great source.  She also provided a link to her free labels.  I borrowed hers, and then created the rest of what I needed.  Here is a link to a google doc with my labels.  Due to font issues, the google doc does not have the same font I used, but the boxes are the correct sizes.  You can change up the font and the labels, and make it your own.

I printed my labels on colored cardstock.  I then used some decorative edge scissors and cut them out.  I used the template of the boxes and cut colored boxes from different scrapbook paper.

Putting it together:
Before I taped the labels down, I created a pattern with my colored paper.  I decided where I wanted my items, and I affixed the labels to the paper.  I used double-sided tape and put my labels on the colored paper.  After putting my labels on the colored paper, I then taped them to the drawers.  I used double sided tape, and you cannot see the tape in the drawer.  With all the drawers, I was able to have multiple drawers of the same thing.

I am so happy with how it turned out.  Although, I don't like to spend a lot of summer time planning for the next year, I love to make crafts.  This was a great project.  I am ready to get it in my classroom and get all the drawers filled.  I know it will keep my desk clutter free.  (Well I can hope)!

Happy toolbox making!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Teachers Pay Teachers SALE!!!!

Visit Teachers pay Teachers August 4th and 5th for a FANTASTIC sale!  This is the time to get those items you have been looking at.  I have a list of of items I am excited to get.  I love a great SALE!!

Use the promo code in addition to any sale the seller is giving!

Happy buying!

New Math TEKS.....Ready or not here they come

As all math teachers in Texas know, the teks have changed!  They aren't just changing a little.  They are changing A LOT!!!  It seems as though we just started the STAAR test (oh yeah!  we did)!  Now, they have come in and completely changed the math teks.  It might just be me, but they do resemble the common core.  HMMMMMM.  I am not sure if I am a fan of this, but I will need to adjust to make it work.

My 8th grade teks now resemble an algebra class.  The upside is that the 8th graders can now use calculators.  That will be a whole lesson.  I do not want to look out and see kids typing in 8 times 6 in the calculator (of course for some kids, this is necessary).  We will definitely need to set some boundaries.  I am a firm believer in people knowing the basic facts.  Although the technology is available, we still need to maintain basic math without the use of technology.

It looks like the 6th grade teks  are taking the biggest beating.  A lot of what I taught in the 8th grade is now being moved down to the 6th grade.  They still have a big mixture of material and more of it!  Hopefully the activities and presentations we were using will come in handy for the 6th grade.

It will definitely take adjusting to get used to the new teks.  We are professionals, and we will do the best job that we can.  I will continue to teach my kids what I am required to teach and then some. Tax and discount is no longer a tek directly listed for 8th grade.  That is such an important life skill, we will continue to incorporate the skill into our class.  If I teach all that I need to teach and teach it in a way that the kids can relate to, they will be fine on the test.  I will not start changing how I teach and only teach to the test. I will teach my kids math, and this will prepare them for the future.

For the 8th grade, I have created a scope and sequence we will be using.  It allows for about 5 weeks of flexibility before the test.  Hopefully, this will be enough to adjust the time spent on the activities. I have the document in my TPT store, and it is free.  Feel free to download and adjust to make it work for your needs. It is also color coded per reporting category (since the teks are all mixed up within each category).

Download the scope and sequence here. This is FREE!!!!!!

It also includes a curriculum plan for the first six weeks.  Of course,  all of this is a work in progress.

All of my math teks checklists have been updated with the new teks.  The new checklists also includes a list of where the old teks went (other grade or deleted).  Hopefully this will help to make sure everything is covered.
Comparison of old teks and where they went

Each tek is separated by reporting category

There is a place to list dates and mastery for each tek.

Here is the original post from two years ago when I created the checklists.  Click here to get all the information behind the checklists.

I have the lists for 2nd through 8th grade available in my store.
Click here for the 8th grade list.  For 3rd through 8th grade, I have also kept my old teks checklists.

I hope that regardless of the new teks, you will not be overwhelmed and lose sight of the main goal.  The main goal is to teach the kids and give them the best that you can give.  I wish you all the best with this new school year.

Happy tekking!