Sunday, December 8, 2013

New Product, New Shop

A new product has been uploaded on my TpT store.

About the Product:
Practice following the rules of words ending in -s, -ed, and -ing. 
Word Work Activity
Practice making words
For Regular Ed and Special ED
TEACCH Tasks included

In other news...I finally have a Teachers Notebook Shop!  Swing on over and check it out!  A special sale will be running this Monday through Friday in celebration!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Things I learn in Second Grade: Acrostic and Array

I would like to remind you that I know of these things, however did not know it had a name.

According to Wikipedia, "An acrostic is a poem or other form of writing in which the first letter, syllable or word of each line, paragraph or other recurring feature in the text spells out a word or a message."

Here is a sample of an Acrostic Poem:

Siesta Key
No worries

An Array is a math term used to define a set of columns/rows. 
Picture borrowed from

Where was I in school?  How did I not learn the terminology for all of this?

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Weekly Interventions (for the general education classroom)

1) Self-Implemented Self-Regulation Break
  I have a student that has a difficult time with self-regulation skills.  In addition to implementing the Zone's of Regulation for this student/class, we are giving him a self-implemented self-regulation break.  He has a timer, which is set for 5 minutes, that is attached to the door.  When he feels like he is sad or going to cry, he is able to take the timer and go for a walk/drink/bathroom break.  He always returns on time after his 5 minutes are up and quickly returns back to work in his general education classroom. 

2) Wiggle Cushions!
  Wiggle cushions are a great way to get the wiggles out!  Wiggle cushions are great for students who: need to move during seated instruction, or have poor writing posture.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Weekly Top 3

I took some Nyquil and am not in a focused state of mind.  I can't believe I made it almost 3 weeks before getting sick :)  Hope you all are staying healthy!

1) Thinking Notepad.  Hold that Thought cards may not work for every child.  For example the student that has no impulse control and has the incessant need to share every thought that comes to mind.  In order to satisfy his need to be heard, I placed a small pad of paper on his desk; with this pad of paper he is encouraged to write down his comments and questions.  We then read the paper throughout the day and make time to discuss the comments and questions with him.

2) Aroma Therapy.  Use different aromas to help alert or calm a student.  Use citrusy or minty smells to alert, and smells such as lavender to calm.  Simply place a drop of essential oil or fragrance onto a cotton ball or tissue.

3) Cover the sink!  We have sinks in each and every classroom in our building, while this is beneficial, especially in a preschool classroom, it does create a problem.  I have students who would play in the water for hours if I would let them.  So for a quick and easy fix I grabbed this file box from Walmart for super cheap...And it gets the job done!  You may want to use a solid colored box if this is not enough.

And here is a bonus intervention for the teacher:
DONUTS!  Let's be truthful, it is much easier to come to work on Friday's knowing that there will be donuts!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Things I learn in second grade: Math

As I mentioned before, I am only in the second general education classroom for 1/2 of my day, and everyday I learn something new.  So do not make fun that I do not have this information in my repertoire, or maybe I do and I just have different terminology for it, or maybe I have been teaching at the preschool level too long; either way, Second graders raise the bar!

This week I have learned:
1) Commutative Property
2) Landmark Numbers
3) String Addition

These things of course make sense to me, and I do use them, but let's be honest...Who actually knew that it was called something?

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Weekly Top 5

Wait/Hold that Thought Card

1) Hold That Thought Card
     We use this card when students really want to share something, but it is not the time.  During the lesson the teacher/aide will hand the student the card (this can be if they begin to talk or if their hand is raised).  At the end of the lesson, or a designated time, the student is able to turn in the card and share their thought. Click here to download a "hold that thought" card.

2) Flip Schedule
    Use this for students who travel or are higher functioning.  To make this you need two pieces of paper laminated and spiral bound together, velcro, and a dry erase marker.  As a student completes the task, you or the student can flip the paper over to show that the task is finished.

3) All Done Bins
     Use all done bins to put in items/tasks/activities when they are completed.  It is important to know that once an item/activity has been completed and placed in the all done bin, DO NOT take it out in front of the student, it is very probable that they will have a meltdown.

4) Swing!
     Swining is a quick and easy sensory/engine break, and the perfect way to wake up a students' engine.

5) Highlighted Paper
     Highlight every-other line to help with spacing and letter formation, as well as allowing room to edit students' work. 

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Peer Buddy System

This week we implemented a peer buddy system in our second grade inclusion classroom.   We randomly (and I use that term loosely) selected students to become buddies.  We explained that we were assigning buddies for a few reasons: 1) we have students that are new to our school, and 2) we enter as strangers and leave as friends.  We truly implemented if for several of our own reasons: 1) Support and develop social skills for students with special needs, 2) Decrease bullying (Did you know bullying is at its highest in second grade?), and 3) Increase positive social-emotional health.

For the first lesson we explained our reasons for implementing the buddy system.  We then talked about how to be a good friend to someone (sharing, using a friendly voice, sharing, etc).  We then paired everyone up and gave them a questionnaire to complete with their partner.  We explained that every 2 weeks we would switch buddies, and every 2 weeks we would interview our buddies.  We then compiled a list of "How to be a buddy."

I am eager to see how the buddy system progresses throughout the school year and I anticipate positive changes in peer relationships and respect within the class.

The peer buddy interview sheet can be found on my TpT site.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Top 5: Quick and Easy Interventions in the Gen. Ed. Class

Hello All,

This year brings new and exciting adventures, this time in second grade, and once again preschool autism (my favorite!!!).  Half of my day is spent in the general education classroom, it is definitely not what I am used to, but it is pretty exciting!

So here are a few quick and simple interventions for the general education classroom:

1) Classroom Timers
2) Class DoJo
3) Thera-Bands wrapped around the bottom of chairs
4) Brain Breaks
5) Post-It notes!!!!

Have a nice and relaxing weekend everyone!  I'm sure you all deserve it!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Autism Awareness Month

April is Autism Awareness Month... How are you planning on educating your staff/coworkers?

My administrator has graciously allowed me 5-10 minutes at our next staff meeting to give a brief overview of ASD.  I have put together the following powerpoint presentation for the staff.  Included in the presentation is a handout to pass out to your fellow colleagues with simple intervention ideas that can be easily implemented in the general education classroom.  There are two hyperlinks to YouTube videos (disclaimer, one contains a profanity in the title as well as a brief clip in the video).  You will also notice the slide about technology and ASD; that slide is made special for my administrator... if you do not understand why, see my previous blog post Let's Talk iPads.

I hope everyone enjoys this free presentation and that it is of use for you and your staff.

Let me know if you use it and the feedback you receive!

Download from my TpT Store

Monday, February 4, 2013


Everyone make sure to check out my TpT store for my Winter Sale!  Everything is 15% off starting 2/5 through 2/8.

As always any feedback on products is greatly appreciated.  Are you looking for something different?  Just let me know and I would be happy to make it for you!

Stay warm!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

TpT update

New Valentine's day BINGO packet which includes picture BINGO and upper and lower case letter BINGO.

A February classroom packet is also available. Included in the packet: 2 sets of calendar numbers, days of the week calendar set, fry word wall 1-400, complete the pattern activities.

Enjoy! Please provide feedback if you purchase! Or let me know if you would like to see something added or removed!