Saturday, August 31, 2013

My New Digs Revealed!

As most of you know, I have moved from a spacious classroom to a luxurious closet  office this year in my new position. So now that the hustle and bustle of the first week has finally slowed down, I finally had some time to snap some photos for all of you! It isn't quite exciting as a classroom...I'll admit...but bear with me ;)! There are some things I am pretty excited about that involve my fab dual staff inside!

So here we are...step on in!


Here is my resource library. I compiled a variety of my favorite read alouds from my classroom and organized them by genre/content area for teachers to borrow and utilize with their students. Whenever I go into rooms, I may pull them for a lesson as well!


Here is the little checkout board I have hanging on my wall. (I know, i know...they have technology for this nowadays...but until I am blessed with an iPad, this will have to do!)


I also took my lovely little pink mirror from my classroom and placed it above my shelf. The frame statement that once said "The reflection of a superkid..." now reads "The reflection of a super teacher..."! (I know I am a total dork.) But teachers need some lovin' too, right?


I also hung this "Super Resources" bulletin board next to the resource library as a place to put information about upcoming events, interesting articles, handouts, sign ups, you name it for the teachers. 


As you move your way around this expansive space you get a nice glimpse of my beautiful modern pipe art ;)! I did try and get a little creative in tying one is as my magnet holder!


Here is my former guided reading cart turned storage place for resources I will be utilizing in the classrooms throughout the week.


And of course no office of mine would be complete without a little monkey action. I just couldn't part with them seeing as they make me think of all of my sweet kiddos over the years who have brought them to me!


I created labels for all of my bins, crates, file holders you name it. Tried to create a little uniformity (and get as organized as possible)!


Here is my actual desk space. I took the "LEER" letters that used to be in my classroom library last year and used wood glue to adhere them to a small board so they could stand on a shelf.


Finally one of my favorite areas in my new place is my "Super Inspiration" bulletin board. I added some of my favorite quotes in Spanish as well as am planning on pinning up cards, notes, and anything "inspiring" I receive throughout the year as a constant reminder as to why I do what I do!


You can snag your free copy of these quotes in Spanish here. There are 5 x 7 in size. It hasn't been tested on my end, but you may be able to stick them in frames as well!


Fonts/Graphics: Kimberly Geswein, Krista Wallden

Check out more classroom and space organization here:


and here ;):











Wednesday, August 28, 2013

First Day- Check!

Well...I survived another first day to live and share about it! I must say it was quite the different experience not having my own classroom this year! I didn't really know what to do with myself!

I spent the day helping where needed and going in and bugging checking in on how all of our amazing new dual staff was holding up! We have quite a few new teachers this year and it took me back to my very first day of teaching seeing the excitement they had when the kiddos arrived!

This being said, I tried to do something little to start the excitement right off the bat. Each of our Dual Language/ELL teachers received one of these fun little snacks in their mailboxes when they arrived!


This idea was actually inspired by First Grade with a Twist and you can find her original post here . She create something similar on Avery labels and stuck them on baggies for her kiddos the first day!

Mine I decided to attach with an orange ribbon instead that I simply hole punched through the goldfish bag. While these are obviously a little more staff oriented, I also created some that you could utilize for your students if you would like below. Both are available by clicking on the image :)!


Oh and last but not least...look what a little birdie dropped off in my office today. 


He told me he even requested green to match my office colors. I think I'll keep him ;)!



Sunday, August 25, 2013

New Pinterest Group Boards!

In an effort to gather more ideas for my new position (as well as share useful ideas with you all), I have created two new group Pinterest boards that I am quite thrilled about!

The first is titled "Dual Language SuPeR Maestros". I created this board as a place for Dual Language/Bilingual teachers to share and gather ideas for the classroom. My hope is to get a TON of quality ideas from experienced teachers all in one place! If you are interested in following the board and/or contributing to the board you can click on the image below and follow the board directions :)!


The second group board I recently created is titled "SuPeR Coaching Ideas". I created this board in an effort to gather ideas for Instructional Coaches such as myself all in one place. We are talkin' ELL, Literacy, Math Coaches, you name it! This position and all that it entails is brand new to me, and I am looking to some of you who have been in similar leadership roles in your building to share your wealth of knowledge and ideas! Same as above, check it out and let me know if you would like to contribute, by clicking on the board image below!


Happy Pinning :)!


Sunday, August 18, 2013

B2S Sale 2013!


Just wanted to remind everyone that today and tomorrow is the giant Back to School Sale @ Teacher's Pay Teachers! You can receive 28% off my entire store when you use the code BTS13! I've posted a few of my "B2S" faves from my store below for you all that are some great ones that helped me to get my room up and running on the right foot. Be sure to check out all of the other stellar TpT sellers sales as well - I know I will! Sale runs through tomorrow!

You can click on the spread below to head to my store to start shoppin (and savin ;)!


Friday, August 16, 2013

Teacher Week 13' - Parte Cinco


Today is the last week of Teacher Week 13' and the theme is teacher tips and tricks. Before I begin my post, I want to say that I have had so much fun this week not only sharing my ideas, but more importantly learning from all of you! There are so many inspiring teachers in this bloggin' world of ours, and I feel so blessed to be a part of it all!

That being said, this week one of my colleagues and I are hosting another meeting for our new teachers. We put our brains together to develop this "First Week Checklist" (a tip sheet of sorts) that we plan on giving them as a reminder of the key things that should be getting done before/during the first week of school! I thought I'd share it with you all today as it may even have some good reminders for you vet teachers as well! It should be pretty universal, although a few dates, specific names of what you call things may be different - but you get the idea :)!

Click on the image to grab a copy of the checklist from Google Docs.
Graphics/Fonts courtesy of Scrappin Doodles and Kimberly Geswein.


A few other fun tips for you all for this upcoming weekend:

Remember those adorable "turquoise capris" I posted a week ago...you know that super sale I found...got them for like $8 (click here for a reminder ;)). Well...because I spread the "Kohl's Love" I was provided with a discount code to share with all of you that will be valid on their website until Sept. 12. So hit up Kohls.com if ya'd like and get 10% off on something nice for your first day with the code BLOGIT10. 

Also, in other exciting savings news, this weekend is the big BACK 2 SCHOOL SALE at Teachers Pay Teachers. You can get up to 28% off at my store along with many others when you use promo code BTS13 on August 18-19. So get your shoppin shoes sweatpants ready folks, it's going to be a weekend of super savings!


PS. Thank you to The 3am Teacher for creating the adorable sale banner!



Thursday, August 15, 2013

Teacher Week 13' - Parte Cuatro


Teacher Week 13' continues on folks. Today is all about classroom management. 

In our building, we utilize something called CBIS which, in a nutshell, is our school's version of PBIS. This is a school wide behavioral support system, thus we all utilize the same expectations throughout the entire building! 

Those include:
1) Put forth your best effort.
2) Be respectful.
3.) Be responsible.
4.) Be a model.

Here is the "Super Expectation" bulletin board we created at the beginning of the year together as a class last year. I hung each of the 4 expectations and then as we talked about them and what each entailed the students helped me to create pictures demonstrating these ideas to hang all around them. This stayed up all year.


Yes, those of you that speak Spanish may have noticed my error in "Se repetuoso"- I cringe when I see it and cannot believe it took me like two weeks to notice before I changed it! 

Anyway...I generalized these a bit for you all with pictures that represent the expectations a little bit better than my lovely superkids and have uploaded them to Google Docs if you'd like a copy to create your own bulletin board. Click on the image to download them in English or Spanish.


Fonts/Graphics: Print Candee, Kevin and Amanda, Scrappin Doodles

(And if you really want them with the superheroes like mine...feel free to leave me a comment with your email...and I could always send those too ;))

As a positive way to motivate students as well as hold them accountable to these expectations, I created a clip chart system for use in my classroom throughout the day. 

Here is what this clip chart system looked like:


This clip chart is a great way to encourage those students that always follow expectations as they can move up through the levels, as well as encourage those who may have lowered their clip as they have the opportunity to change their behavior and move up thoughout the day!

It worked perfectly as a complement to our CBIS system and it could def. be adapted, I feel, to meet the needs of many others as well! It's quite versatile and you can use it to meet your students/building needs as you see fit!

Yet again, I tried to generalize it a bit for you all as the "plan de acciĆ³n/Action Plan" part was a little specific to my classroom. The levels are now: Super Job!, Excellent!, Very Good, Ready to Learn, Time to Think, Teacher Choice, and Parent Contact. There is an option for "El maestro decide" for my guys in Spanish as well! Grab the updated version in English or Spanish at my TpT store by clicking on the image below to utilize in your classroom this school year :)!





Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Teacher Week 13' - Parte Tres


It's day three of Teacher Week 13' and it's going to be a short and sweet one tonight folks as I am wiped out from a day of classroom organization with our new teachers! 

Fancy that, the theme of today is "classroom organization". 
Now, if you are interested in how I organized my classroom last year, you are more than welcome to check out my "classroom tour" post from last school year here
As you know...there is no new classroom photos to show this year...(but get pumped for some really sweet office ones in the coming weeks ;)).

However, I did want to share a little organization tip (and freebie!) with you all tonight. Once of the most important parts of effective classroom organization is not only in how you organize student materials, but your own materials as the teacher as well.

One of the things that has helped me greatly over the last year or two is having a variety of well organized binders to put all of that ever-so-important paperwork we have for everything under the sun! I am talkin' lesson plans, guided reading schedules, meeting notes, professional development handouts, you name it. It is important to keep all of it organized or it is so easy to have it get lost in the shuffle.

Here are some examples of my binders from this past school year (super themed of course).


Thought you guys might enjoy a cup of this organizational bliss as well, so I tweaked them a bit and made them a little more universal (simple- no specific theme) as well as made them editable so that you could change the name and school to personalize them for yourself. I also include one black template for you to add your own title if you would like. There are 9 covers already created + 1 create your own for a total of 10 in all.

Click on the image to download and enjoy. I would really appreciate your feedback, and good luck getting organized in the coming days for your kiddos!


Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Teacher Week 13' - Parte Dos


Back for Day 2 of "Teacher Week 13'". Today's theme- a classroom tour. Well ladies and gents...here she is...isn't she a beaut ;).


But really...in all seriousness, in my new position I am graced with an office this year (which at one point was a closet I may add). This photo may be a slight exaggeration, but I no longer have the luxurious classroom space I once had, and I now have a basement full of stuff I have accumulated over the years with sadly no where to go!

Thus, in lieu of a tour from this year, I thought I would take you back in time for a little tour through my first five years of teaching (this year will be #6). I think you will appreciate my evolution as much as I did when I went back to find some of these oldies for you all! 

So let's start from the beginning...


Confession...I had no idea where to even begin to set up my classroom my first year. I just remember being so excited to have this brand new job that I worked so hard for and a classroom finally of my very own! Anyone else have multiple moments of just staring in awe and confusion as to where to go next. I think half of my set up time was consumed by those moments that year. Somehow I made it through!

Fast forward two years...I was at a new school in a new grade level! I definitely had a better understanding of what needed to be setup, but was still lacking the ability to tie it all together I'd say. I call this my "year of the rainbow". 


This year I just remember buying and creating any and every thing in any color I found that made me smile. I was all for bright patterns and cool colors. 

Fast forward two more years...to last year. My OCD side went into full force. I blame blogging for this ;)! Everything had to be color coordinated (black, green, pink yellow) and related somehow to my superhero theme. I will not lie (as I know many of you do too!) in saying I probably spent more hours on the most minute details like bin labels and colored clothespins than the time I spent thinking about and putting together my classroom combined my first year. Isn't is supposed to get easier, friends?


I will say, it kind of hurt to take my classroom down at the end of this year! I'm hoping to utilize some of the decor in my office as well as share some things with my new dual staff members! 

Looking forward to seeing how you all are coming along this year! Maybe take a moment and look back at photos from your first few years, when you are feeling like the organization is never going to end...and think about how far you have come ;)!



Monday, August 12, 2013

Teacher Week 13' - Parte Uno


I am so thrilled to be linkin' up with Blog Hoppin' on this fine Monday evening for the first day of "Teacher Week 13'"!

Today's theme...

Yes, this means you are going to be subjected to 10 "fun" things about little ole' me. Don't all jump at once ;) (Although, I must admit, I have already had oh so much fun reading through many of your "10 fun things"...its great to see the teachers behind the blogs!)

So here goes...Krista Carlson...super teacher...in a nutshell!

1.) This will be my 6th (ehh...does that make me a veteran now?) year of teaching! I taught 2 years of 1st grade dual language, 3 years of 2nd grade dual language, and as many of you who follow know, I scored a pretty sweet new position this year as the Dual Language Instructional Coach for our building. It's going to be quite the learning curve...but I am ready for a new challenge!

2.) I am short. I mean seriously vertically challenged status. Last time I was measured, I came in at a whopping 5'0" (and this may be due to some generous rounding up on the part of my dr. ;)).


3.) I looveeee exercising and gettin my muscles movin' and groovin'. (I know...I know..it's something most of us just do...because we feel it's necessary), but seriously, it's my stress relief! It's like candy to me ;)!

Here's good ole' Mama Carlson and I after we ran the Rock n' Roll Half Marathon this summer in Chi-Town.


4.) I am dating my best friend. No really. Ryan and I were best friends for 6 years before we started officially dating this past winter. We were there for each other through everything life threw at us (including other relationships ups and downs) ...when things just finally fell into place, and we realized - wait a minute- we both love each other, know each other inside and out and we are one another's best friends. Why aren't we together? And the rest is history! 


I mean we are cute right?
He's the best.

5.) Now for the other love of my life...Miss Bella.
I mean I think the picture explains it all. 


That face just gets me every time. 
I can't believe she is already going to be 4 in Sept.!

6.) I love, love, love to travel. It is my goal to make it to 6 of the 7 continents before I die (I get cold easily...so I am thinkin Antarctica might not welcome me too well).

I learn so much from the people I meet and the places I see and I just feel like there is nothing better than the experiences and insight into the world I have gained through travel!

Did I introduce you to my second career...Miss Carlson R.N. 
Just kidding. All breathe a sigh of relief.
Here is a pic of me when I went to Honduras with my mother and other oncology nurses/doctors to serve as a translator. I must say my medical knowledge and medical Spanish flourished. 



7.) I am in love with organization, checklists, you name it. I mean to the point of adding things to a list that I have already done, just so that I have the gratification of checking it off. It's bad...but makes me feel oh' so accomplished!

8.) I <3 smoothies. I make them nearly every day either for breakfast or an afternoon snack. Orange juice with bananas, strawberries, a touch of vanilla protein powder and agave syrup. To die for.

9.) I recently had to go gluten and dairy free. It's been quite the lifestyle transition, but...I must say it has turned me from a cooking "dud" into a cooking "stud?"...or at least mediocre ;)! Going out to eat just isn't quite as fun as it used to be and definitely not as easy. So I have been doing a lot of cooking at home! 

Check out this spaghetti squash boat with turkey meatballs I managed to pull off last week. I'm workin it!


10.) I am a "quote-aholic". And by this I mean I love positive messages. I have everything from frames to notecards written out with scripture and positive quotes all over my house, office, you name it. I just love the constant reminders of how I want to live and look at life as well as how truly blessed I am.


Now head on over and learn about the lives behind the blogs of some of the other fabulous ladies you follow!















Saturday, August 10, 2013

Peak at my Blogger Exchange Goodies!

Before any peaking goes on, I just want to give a big thanks to Covered in Glitter and Glue and Adventures of Ms. Smith for organizing this "Back to School...Blogger Exchange". It was such a fun way to get to know another teacher, go shopping, and get some goodies (three things that we all love!). 

Now for the unveiling of the treats in my package-o-fun!


Seriously huge thank you to the lovely Kathy from KS and Her Kids for such great goodies to start my year off right! 

Check out what other bloggers received from their fab new friends here.


Friday, August 9, 2013

Five For Friday - Back to School Style


I'm back for another edition of "Five for Friday"....my scatterbrain just loves this linky!

First things first, I spent today giving my Pinterest a bit of a makeover - "Super" style! All of my boards now incorporate my theme, are much more organized, and I have tried my best to purge some doubles and items that may have been "pinned on a whim" ;))! Check it out (...and feel free to follow me if you aren't already!)



Numero dos on my agenda for this week was doing a little back to school shopping. I am always one for a good deal and some serious sales. Thus, I had to share my seriously stellar find with you all.


Now these are remarkable for three reasons:
1. They are capris that actually look like "capris" and not jeans on me.
2. They are turquoise...therefore dressy enough to pull off at work because they aren't true "jeans".
3. They were 8 dollars, I repeat, 8 dollars on clearance!

Dear Kohls, You Rock, Love, Krista.
PS. Grab your pair of these lovelies here.

This leads me to number three on my week of randomness...a little sweetness added in. 
This summer I have taken on a fondness for cooking and trying new recipes...and thus have also taken on a fondness for taking photos of my food creations! Check out this deliciousness.


Yes, those are almond butter blondies folks. And yes you can find the recipe for this healthy-ish treat by clicking on that decadent image above!

Number four leads me to a book I have been diving into a bit this week entitled...


I first bought this book when I was working on my administrative Masters and thought I would pull it back out to try and find some ideas for celebrating, recognizing, and having some fun with the dual staff this year. Part of being a coach is positive support, right...all over it ;)!

Finally, I finished up "My First Day of School...(a Keepsake Book)" pack for you all! I know some of you have already gone back to school (fail on my end right)...but we don't until the 28th...so I think I was slackin' a bit and still trying to hold on to my last few weeks of summer! Either way it is complete and comes in both English and Spanish of course. It contains a cover as well as 8 pages that your kiddos can work on that will serve as a memory of their first day with you! Check it out by clicking on the spread below!