Super Improver Door


A couple years ago I read up on whole brain teaching and using a super improvers wall display in the classroom. I attempted to do it in the general education classroom that I co-taught in but it didn’t go as well as planned. So instead of starting this whole group I chose to start it in with my small group of IEP students in my resource office that I use to teach small groups.

This year I went for a chalkboard type theme for the wall. I bought some scrapbook paper from Hobby Lobby and lined the back of my door before I put the Super Improvers’ Wall up.  I put each kids’ name up in the same color as the content area.  Underneath their names I write I can…. and leave enough space so that after they are laminated we can write and change out goals as needed. Next to each child’s name I put a circle that represents the color they are on on the Super Improver’s Wall. On that circle I write what that child can do at this time.

Let me just say this has been the ONE thing that my kids look at after each time we progress monitor (every 2 weeks). Their goal is to reach pink (Master). At the beginning of the year we set mostly year-long goals. For most of my kids learning the letters in the alphabet is a huge struggle. We are in April and I have kids that still don’t know all the letters.

I have a Literacy side and a Math side to my wall. As a team the student and myself choose one goal from each area. I have some students who are on writing IEPs and not Reading IEPs (that’s why I put Literacy, it covers it all!). To the left of my door I have student graphs that they color in to correspond to the color they are on the wall. This provides a visual for them to see where they are at and how far they have come!

When they reach pink I told them they can have whatever kind of treat they wanted since they worked so hard. I don’t let them choose goals that will be easily met within a month or two. I try to aim for long-term goals.  So far McDonald’s has been a favorite choice. (Come spring time and it seems I am venturing out more often because kids are meeting their goals, I love it!).


1st day of school chalkboard

The beginning of a new school year is fast approaching and for some it has already started. I have been teaching summer school this summer so I am kind of ready to start the new school year.

Below are the canvases I made for the kids last year. I’m not sure if I will be using these again this year or the one I purchased from the Target Dollar Spot earlier this summer.

I bought a 2 pack of canvases at Hobby Lobby and painted them with chalkboard paint. Then I took chalk markers and wrote their name, First day of _______, the date, and age.

In the small hard to read on here print I wrote the name of the school, teacher, favorite song, what they want to be when they grow up, favorite food and I love to…

I can’t wait to see what their answers to these questions will be this year!




Kindergarten here we come class book

20131112-060310.jpgAt the beginning of the year we really focus on names. For this activity I cut up the letters in each students’ name and had them put it back together and glue it on the page. Then they had to dictate what they like to do to me and I wrote it on the blank space on the page.

20131112-060328.jpgAfter the students had completed putting their names together and drawing pictures of what they liked to do we hung them on a bulletin board in the classroom for everyone to see. After I took them off the bulletin board we made it into a classbook and put it in the classroom library.



David Goes to School craftivity/bulletin board

20150129-203221.jpgSince it is the beginning of a new school year and many of my kindergarten students have not attended school before we used the book David Goes to School by David Shannon to learn about some rules we should follow at school. After we read the story the students created their own “David’s” and dictated how they will follow the school and classroom rules. I put this up on our small bulletin board in the classroom so that their parents could see them when they came to parent led conferences last week.



School Year Goal People Craftivity


I saw this cute idea on Pinterest to have students make a goal for the school year and then create a paper person to display. Since I have kindergarten students I had them dictate what their goal for the year would be. We discussed what some goals could look like in kindergarten. Most students chose to learn how to read. After I wrote down their goals they got to create a mini version of themselves using construction paper and yarn for hair.  Here are some of the final pieces that we hung up in the classroom for parents to see at Parent-Led conferences:

goalppl2 goalppl3 goalppl1

Out of this World themed clip up behavior chart


When my co-teacher asked me what I thought about an Out of this world/reach for the stars theme for our classroom this year I got right to researching different things to do/create. One thing that I kept seeing when looking at behavior management was the concept of the clip chart. In our room we have operated using the stoplight system of red, yellow and green. Everyone started on the side of the chart and when they needed reminders they would move up the stoplight. One thing this system lacks is recognizing students who go above and beyond in the classroom. I had no clue how I was going to turn the concept of a clip up chart to fit our theme but my co-teacher had total faith in me when I asked her if we could scrap the stoplight system we were both accustomed to and switch to this system in order to recognize more students.

I wanted to create a clip up chart that fit into our theme so I knew right away I wanted to create a behavior rocket ship. I used cardstock and backed it on posterboard to make it extra sturdy. I then laminated the rocket to hopefully help it last through the school year.

The sayings that I came up with for our rocket ship were: Red- Emergency Landing (Time-out); Yellow- Reach TOWARD the stars (warning to help them fix unwanted behavior); Green- Ready to Blast Off (everyone starts on green); Blue- Shining Star; Purple- Out of this world.

As you can tell from the picture above we had an AMAZING day this last Friday! This picture was taken at the end of the day (I think it’s fair to say we were in great moods all day and the kids were great). This was our first day with no one ending the day on yellow or red!!!

In order to reward students for their behavior we have a Friday Reward system that we have in place that is based off of our rocket clip up chart. At the end of each day students get tickets that they save until the end of the week. When students end on purple they get 3 tickets, blue= 2 tickets, green= 1 ticket, yellow= 0 tickets, red= owe 1 ticket. For every 5 tickets they have earned throughout the week they get to choose a special reward (post to follow about our reward system).  They have the potential to earn up to 3 extra prizes (15 tickets) each week.

Beginning of school year door decoration


So the theme for our classroom this year is Reach for the stars. I wanted to make something cute for the kindergarteners to see when they arrived. I cut 4 inch stars using my Cricut machine. I wrote each students’ name on each star. My co-teacher and I brainstormed sayings for the door and we came up with Blasting Off to a Great Year in Room 208. Since I created a rocket ship/out of this world theme behavior clip chart I decided to create a similar rocket for the door. Time ran short so instead of using scrapbook for the flames on the rocket I used some streamers my co-teacher had in her desk. I actually like the look of the streamers better! We had many comments on how creative our classroom door was.

First Day of School Picture Frame


While looking through Pinterest to get ideas for back to school I saw many versions of a 1st day of school picture frame where your child holds a picture frame up with their face in the middle. It usually has the year and grade they will be going into.

Well, my daughter is starting 3 year old pre-school this year so I wanted to create something for her. I figured since I was already making it for her I might as well make another grade marker for my students at work.
Here is how I created mine:

I took an old cardboard box that I had laying around (it was a Fisher Price box that had a toy that my son got for his birthday). I used a box cutter to cut out one side so that way it was somewhat straight. Don’t worry about it if it’s not all the way straight, it gets covered up. Next, I found some light blue cardstock and used my Cricut to create a border to use around the edge of the cardboard. You could also use bulletin border edging but I didn’t have any at my house. After I glued down the border for my frame I cut out a star with the Cricut using 12×12 cardstock. I cut the star at 10″. Then I cut out the 1 and DAY at 4″ and the st at 3″ and the squiggly mark underneath at 1/2″. I also cut out a red apple at 4″.

*If you want to make it easier I have seen countless examples of doing this just by using an old picture frame                     without the glass. But when I saw one that was all crafted up I had to make my own!

I then created a crayon box that I added the school year to and a pencil that has the grade level here.  I have included crayon boxes from 2013-2018 and grade level pencils from 3 year old pre-school to 5th grade.

Then I happened to go to Michael’s and I found this cute purple paper so I had to make another frame. I figure the students can just choose which frame they want their picture taken with.


The thought crossed my mind: What am I going to do with these pictures after I take them? Well, I have a few things that I am going to do with them. The first thing I will be doing is printing out each picture and making each parent a card during Parent-Led conferences, which is a week after we start school. On the outside of the card I will have the picture and then on the inside of the card I found this cute poem that I will include.

Another thing I am planning on doing with this picture is to include it in a kindergarten timeline for each parent. How I am doing this is I started our own classroom blog last school year to try and keep parents informed about what their child is doing in school. Throughout the year I will be good about taking pictures of the kids, especially since we have a class blog it makes it easier. At the end of the year I am planning on making a DVD slideshow for each family when their child graduates kindergarten!