Back to School!

Going back this year has been very very very very very very---different!!! 

After 18 EIGHTEEN 18 years as a third grade teacher - I made a huge switch. I am now our schools STEM Lab teacher, serving 17 classes of third through fifth graders. So far, it has been awesome and most definitely very different.

Best example......the first day of school. As boys and girls came down the hallway I had NOTHING to do! I did not have to be at my door having my picture made (although this is always fun), I did not have the ten tons of registration cards and money envelopes to sort (never fun), and I did not have to spend countless hours going over procedures, rules, and the zillion little bitty things you have to do on the first day. I did teach five classes of "Welcome to the STEM Lab" and some wondering and noticing activities on the first day, but it went very smoothly. Here's the lab:

STEM Lab! Hands-on learning is the best!
You have to admit that it's totally awesome!!

Okay, well the reason for this post is two-fold--- first a repeat of a very popular pin I added to Pinterest last year. It is also an activity I repeated in the lab this year as it was very eye-opening for kids last year. I knew it would be again. It's an anchor chart titled: "What Do You Need from Your Classmates in Order to Do Your Best". Kids write their thoughts on a post-it and share their feelings. Pretty profound stuff!

If you need more ideas about Team Building you can click on the links below!
Team Building for STEM Challenges! Here are several ideas to use to get your STEM class going!
You can read more tips on STEM Activities for Kids:

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The LAST Friday......

It has been an awesome summer! Daughter married, moved my classroom, read 27 books, learned how to mod podge (which is really not something you learn- you just do it), and tackled many crafty thingies.  Click {here} and {here} for more about crafties and click {here} or {here} for my classroom transformation! UPDATE UPDATE  UPDATE!!  I have added a linky button to part of this post--- it's about the TERRIFIC BLOGGER EXCHANGE Link up with Covered in Glitter and Glue. about Five Random Things for this week! My LAST week.......before school begins!

Random Thing #1:
I polished off decorating my STEM Lab with some great quotes: 
I wanted this project to be easy and it was- but first I toyed with vinyl letters to just stick up OR using a Cricket to cut out letters to stick on.... then just decided to draw a wavy line and go for it with a paint brush. I printed the quotes in cute fonts and just tried to recreate......turned out pretty good! Here's another one:

Random Thing #2:
 I joined with Covered in Glitter and Glue about a month ago for a Blogger Exchange Event : 
and this week received my package from my Blogger partner. What an amazing treat this was!!! My partner looked through my blog (A LOT) and sent things that were very personal. I once created a post on this blog and ended it with this picture:
 What a wonderful surprise to find this in my Blogger Exchange Package:
Here's the canvas in my room:

My new friend from Fifth in the Middle did a splendid  job of sending items I can use in my new lab. Here's a peek at the other items in the package:
Yes, those are magnets labeled with symbols from the Periodic Table and that plastic bin for pencils looks like test tubes. Can you see it sitting on the supply table in my room?
Thank you so much Fifth in the Middle and Covered in Glitter and Glue! This exchange was a terrific idea and great fun!

Third Random Thing:
 I found the best new App! (Well, it's new for me!)  It's called Polyvore. With the app you can choose clothing, jewelry, shoes, hand bags, etc and create your own collages of outfits. I have a feeling this is going to be more addictive than Candy Crush (probably not). Here's a collage I created:

Fourth Random Thing: I made an amazing cheese dip- it was delicious:

You can find the recipe for it {here}!

Fifth Random Thing.......can't think of one.....maybe next week I'll write about SIX thingies.

Have a great weekend!

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