Hi all! It’s been a minute since I’ve been on here and wanted to give a quick update on how distance learning has been going! There are pros and cons to this whole thing which I have come to realize! Here are a lists of my pros AND cons to distance learning! (I have also included these gold memes that have been a ray of sunshine in these times)!
Wearing sweatpants or leggings EVERYDAY – am I wrong? I really do not like dress pants and love that I can be comfortable everyday!
Working from home – It has been nice to work from home and have that few extra minutes to get in a quick chore or go to the bathroom whenever I want!
Not packing my lunch!!
Planning – need I say more? It has been very challenging to make learning FUN for 1st and 2nd graders online.
Not getting to see the kiddos – Let’s be real, this is the BEST part of the job! I miss those interactions with the kids everyday and getting to know them so well!
Staring at the screen – again, need I say more.
Trying to get young kids to use the computer!
Things are going well considering. I do believe this whole thing is going to make us so grateful to be back in person eventually! ? Check out my Pandemic Teacher Tag Video on Youtube and comment and let me know how you have been doing with distance learning!
Building your classroom library can be VERY overwhelming and is something that will take time!! When I got hired for my first teaching job EVER I had ZERO books and walked into a classroom with 20 books (most of them were not very interesting). Over the four months of my first teaching job I did collect some books. It wasn’t until I jumped back into my teaching career in 2018 that I began seriously scouring for books!
Here are my five tips for building your classroom library! These are tips for BOTH new teachers and current teachers!
1. Donations – Ask for donations from your friends and family. Chances are they have a few kids books around that their children have outgrown. If you don’t have friends with kids you can always set up an Amazon wishlist to share on your social media with books you would like so that friends and family can purchase them for you!
2. Looks for deals – Go to garage sales, thrift stores, and glue your eyes to Facebook Marketplace! I have scores BOXES of books for $10 or $15 a box with a wide range of topics! I also have a local thrift store that will have 50% off books every few weeks – GO TO THOSE!!
3. Discount Websites – firstbook.com or thriftbooks.com are great resources to fill in those missing books in a series or if you are looking for specific anchor texts. Firstbooks.com offers a GREAT discount to those teachers who teach at qualifying schools.
4. Set up your Scholastic class – Make sure you get a class code with Scholastic so that your children can purchase books and you can earn points towards FREE books! The kids get really excited about the book flyers that will get mailed to your school. I would set up a “class order” about once a month to maximize points!
5. End of the Year Book Challenge – This is my FAVORITE way to grow my classroom library because it is 100% FREE and you are going to get books that kids love reading! Watch my Youtube video below to learn more about how this works in my classroom:
Growing your library will take TIME! I encourage you to be patient and ask for help!! You do not have to purchase every book in your classroom library at full price by yourself! I hope these tips help you!
Happy back to school my friends! I hope you have had a great back to school season, whether you are in person, hybrid or fully online. My school is 100% online which I have to be honest has been HARD!!! We have been in session for about a month, although our first week was canceled due to forest fires. So it was a weird start to an already weird way!
Starting at a brand new school, adjusting to the new amount of work, getting to know new students and a new culture is HARD!! I’m sure you are facing some really hard things also!
In some weird way I find comfort that EVERYONE is going through this hard thing together! Everyone is! We need to give grace to everyone! I have found that this situation we are all in has really bonded me to my families, which was one of my biggest concerns because I was going to a new school and didn’t know anyone!
We can do it and we will get through this year. If you need help, prayers, encouragement, reach out to me! I want to be here to support you! You’ve got this! Best of luck!