Saturday, February 23, 2013

Hall Pass

I saw this earlier in the week and meant to participate. My Google Reader Account is now full of Hall Passes! Such a great idea!

P- Product

My favorite product in my store is my (Math) Operation Snowball Fight.

Operation Snowball Fight

My class still asks to play this as a review during math centers. I  am a big fan of the self-checking QR codes!

A- Area

This corner of my room is my favorite. In fact I just moved the carpet over so that it faces that direction.


What I like about it:
The quilt on the chair was part of a service learning project I did as an undergrad for my honor’s thesis. The class voted to have me keep the quilt so I could repeat the project with future classes. Since then my future classes have donated quilts for media centers post-Katrina and raised $3,000 by auctioning quilts for Haitian Earthquake Relief. 

The frog chalkboard was a class auction gift a couple of years ago. As I’ve mentioned before, the principal let me paint the rest of the door with the chalkboard paint. I post a question of the day for my students to answer. The kids still get a kick out of writing on the door and we’ve done it all year!

The curtain was one of my projects this summer. It is actually half a fitted bed sheet wrapped around a tension rod. (I got the idea from this pin.) I tied it up with two pieces of ribbon and had instant no-sew curtains. I used the flat sheet as the background on my bulletin board. (see below)

The flowers are a recent addition, but daffodils from my Irishman make me smile!

S – Signal

I was fortunate last year to take a slightly extended maternity leave. My sub started the year and I took over mid-December. For the most part it was great. There was one habit though that made me crazy.

My students had been trained to use the finger signals when they had to go to the bathroom. As in hold up one finger or two depending on….well….you know. I couldn’t handle it. To me that falls in the category of TMI.

Then I found this on Pinterest. The link here is for free printable classroom sign language posters. What I love most is that they are based on real sign language.

My students use sign language to ask to go to the restroom or to get a drink of water. When they raise their hands, they use the sign language to let me know if they have an answer, a question, or a comment. 

They have small individual posters for each sign or the one page overview. I used the poster machine to enlarge the one pager, but I may go back to smaller signs and post only those we use regularly.


To transition between activities I try to incorporate a brain break. I posted about a few of my favorite websites for transitions last week in this post. Also pictured here are even more free brain break resources. (Link 1 and Link 2)

S – Sanity

I used to live for reading blogs during my lunch break. Everyone at my school takes a working lunch alone in their classroom. Now that I have a student teacher in my room with me, sitting at my desk reading blogs might be considered a *tad* antisocial!

Other sanity savers: audiobooks from the library on my phone and photos of my kids posted behind my desk.

Now I’m off to read some of the other posts with a cup of tea and a cupcake from Costco. Yummy!


  1. I love your chalkboard door! I wonder if most kids even know what a chalkboard is anymore! I would like to do this or paint a table!

  2. Your chalkboard door and how you use it is INCREDIBLE! I have also wish-listed your Operation Snowball Fight. My kids will LOVE it.

    I'm also taking part in the hall pass, so feel free to visit my blog and check it out :)
    K. Almaraz at Our Future is bright

  3. Oops..forgot to include this in my previous post. Where did you grow up in Texas? I'm a native too :)

  4. Love the chalkboard door. My students use sign language when they need to use the bathroom and get a drink too. I had a student who was deaf last year and so it carried over into this year too and I really like it.
    I wanted to let you know that the giveaway is up and running and also to say THANK YOU for helping out! ( Let me know if there is something I should add or change!)
    Diving Into 2nd Grade

  5. I love your blog! I am your newest follower :)

    Mindful Rambles

  6. Love your blog name and your room like so inviting! I am your newest follower! Looking forward to sharing ideas!

    The Second Grade Superkids

  7. What a FUN area of your classroom. I've found that letting students write on areas that they are not used to is SOO exciting to them, and a great classroom management for you ;) Your signals are perfect - I took sign language throughout college and truly think it's a fascinating language - what a great way to incorporate it into the classroom environment! Glad you're part of Diving Into 2nd Grade's giveaway otherwise I never would have found ya! Cannot wait to see more :)

    Miss V's Busy Bees

    PS. I absolutely LOOOOVE your layout - the colors are gorgeous and who doesn't like suntans/the beach?!

  8. I love your hall pass! I did one too! I' m your newest follower!
    Science for Kids Blog

  9. I have never been a fan of those hand signals. Use the restroom... I don't need to know any more details! haha! I love audio books on my phone too! Sadly, our county blocked blogs from our internet portal so no more blog hopping during lunch :( You're blog is amazing!!!

  10. Chalk paint on your door? That is BRILLIANT! I'm going to see if I can do that.
    Grade ONEderful
    Ruby Slippers Blog Designs