The Importance Of Classroom Jobs-Community Building

I wanted to share some examples of classroom job charts I have seen out in the field. If you have a great job chart, take a picture and post in the comments. Having examples will help you for when you set up your classroom in the fall. Take pictures of everything now so you will the examples later 5 Things To-Do Before Student Teaching Is Done

Room 51 staff

This is a 6th grade classroom job board which include the following jobs: Lunch Manager, Custodial, Desk Doctor, Pet Patrol, Materials Manager, Teacher Assistant and Secretary.

What are the benefits of having classroom jobs?

  • Provides structure for students who benefit from knowing what their role is in class
  • Creates a sense of community where all learners are committed to the good of the classroom
  • Encourages students to give back and become helpers

    Job Chart 2nd grade

    This job chart is from a second grade classroom. Jobs include paper passer, line leader, door holder, flag salute, lunch tub monitor, chair monitor, librarian


How many jobs should a classroom have?

Continue reading

Cultivate Gratitude For Students With ACES

Students who experience Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) can benefit from a focused practice of cultivating gratitude.

One research article states the importance of:

“providing ways to action gratitude through student initiatives”


for children who have ACES.

The full article is linked here: Teaching With Strengths in Trauma-Affected Students: A New Approach to Healing and Growth in the Classroom  

This text box comes directly from the article and shows the increased psychological capacities and strengths in trauma-affected students.

Aces and gratitude

A daily home practice I have instituted is a gratitude jar:

Continue reading

1000 Books Before Kindergarten


I learned about this prchool reading program called 1000 Books Before Kindergarten from a friend who lived in another state. Her library had a program in place to track and provide incentives for children to read 1000 books before entering Kindergarten. Our local library had not yet started a program so my son (who was an infant at the time) and I logged the books we read with the phone app. The phone app. can be downloaded and used on your smart phone.

Program Mission for 1000 Books Before Kindergarten 

The 1000 Books Foundation is operated exclusively for charitable, literary, and educational purposes.

The objectives of this organization are:

  • to promote reading to newborns, infants, and toddlers
  • to encourage parent and child bonding through reading

Certificate:  After each milestone, 100, 200, 300 etc. books read, I printed from the website a certificate showing how many books had been read. The website provides certificates that can be printed out if you want to follow along at home. Click the link here to find the printable certificates

This program is perfect for homeschooled preschoolers, as a summer reading incentive program and preschools can adopt this program as well!

certificate .jpg


Continue reading

5 Things To-Do Before Student Teaching Is Done

When May comes around, you are almost done student teaching…

Here are a few things to consider before the school year ends:

  1. Take pictures: Before everything in the classroom is packed up and put into boxes, take pictures of your classroom and classrooms at your school that you like. Take pictures of bulletin boards and how they should look. Take pictures of word, walls, classroom job charts, and any other parts of the classroom decorations or organization you would want to re-duplicate.pexels-photo-1002635.jpeg
  2. Get Digital Copies: Make sure to get digital copies of anything your mentor teacher used in the classroom that you could use in your future classroom. Newsletters, progress monitoring sheets, blank data sheets, substitute teacher folder information are examples of forms you can get copies of before the school year wraps up.pexels-photo-990819.jpeg
  3. Get Letters of Reference: If you have not done so already, make sure to leave with letters of recommendation from the mentor teachers and administrators you worked with. Ideally the letter is on the school letterhead and signed. Make sure to give 2-3 weeks notice when requesting a letter of reference. pexels-photo-356331.jpeg
  4. Give Thanks: Write thank you notes for your mentor teacher, grade level team, parent volunteers, front desk staff and anyone else who helped you during your journey. The Power Of The Thank-You Note Check with your mentor teacher about farewell gifts to students. Some teachers will send students off on the last week of school with a small gift.
  5. Celebrate: Take time to recognize the accomplishments you and your students have made this year. You have worked so hard and have a whole school year to reflect upon. You have so much to be proud of!pexels-photo-949592.jpeg


And Enjoy that Summer break! 

Teacher Hack-Water Bottle Holder

I had the opportunity to visit a wonderful 3rd grade classroom in a rural part of Oregon. The Rock Star teacher Arlee Hall has created a well run, organized and inclusive classroom. He has a 3-d printer, is raising salmon in his class, and incorporates technology to allow his students access to the wider world beyond their small town. His passion and innovation for education exudes out of every corner of his classroom. Many of his supplies in class have been donated thanks to his hard work with

Teacher Hack-Water Bottle Holder: One idea that stood out and made me think “why didn’t I think of that?” was the way he uses bike water bottle holders on table legs to provide a water bottle access for each student. Most teachers keep the water bottles in bins, rolling carts or by the sink. His simple teacher hack of providing a holder for each student creates less clutter, confusion and minimizes the out of seat time going to and from the sink to get water.

Inclusive: For kids with autism, having access to their water, and taking periodic drinks of it can become a calming and self-soothing activity. Knowing the water is within arm’s reach can cause less stress and anxiety for the child. When a child’s basic needs are met, there is something reassuring and calming that can happen instantly. For kids with limited mobility, having easy access to a water bottle helps minimize the physical need to access a water bottle or drinking fountain across the room.  Continue reading

5 Ways to Avoid Teacher Burnout

As teachers, we may start the school year full of enthusiasm, excitement and a positive outlook, but as the year goes on, we may start to feel teacher burnout. Over years of teaching this burnout may intensify and become obvious to colleagues, parents and your students.  Here are some signs of burnout and a 5 ways to avoid teacher burnout.

 Signs of teacher burnout:

  • Feeling hopeless and overwhelmed by the paperwork and workload of teaching
  • Feeling as if nothing you do will help your students
  • Not wanting to go to work
  • Withdrawing from your work colleagues
  • Catching yourself always speaking negatively about your colleagues or students
  • Mental, physical or emotional exhaustion that persists over time

Five ways to avoid teacher burnout
1.) Send out an SOS

Reach out to your support network. Tap in to the supports you have in your life including friends, family and trusted colleagues. If your mental health is suffering, set up a time to talk to a mental health counselor. If you teach at a public school, the school counselor may be able to give you a referral for a professional to talk to.

Continue reading

Get Ready Bin-Providing Structure For The Morning Routine

Get ready bin: Home based intervention support (autism)

What is the get ready bin? A strategy to provide support for young children to get ready in the morning before school.

Who can benefit from the get ready bin?

Children with autism who respond well to visual supports and structure and neuro-typical children who struggle to get ready in the morning before school.

Children who live in two different homes due to separation or divorce.

Supplies needed:

  • A bin from the dollar store or a bin large enough to put your child’s full outfit for school.


  • Dot Velcro (see link) and print out the words Today is…. and will pick me up…

Continue reading