Sunday, August 18, 2013

Room Sneak Peak

So obviously Teacher Week '13 was a bust for me!  I just got so incredibly busy and overwhelmed this week!  I was trying so hard to get my room together as much as I could before professional developments started.  I was at school every single day this past week from early in the morning to late at night and my first official teacher workday wasn't until Thursday!  I know that every teacher goes above and beyond and works long hours on days they don't have to, but I just didn't realize how slow getting my room ready would be or how much work it would take.  My "To Do" list just keeps getting longer and longer and I'm getting more overwhelmed and stressed out by the minute.  But at the same time, I am loving every second of it!  I've had so much fun spending time at school and getting to know the other teachers.  I still get excited every time I pull in the school parking lot because it's MY school where I'M TEACHING!  It feels SO good!  Y'all should have seen me when I saw my box for the first time in the teacher's lounge!  Little things like seeing my name on top of a roster puts the biggest smile on my face!  And I hope that feeling never goes away.  So now, I'm going to give you a little sneak peak of what has been consuming every waking minute of my time for the last few weeks.  I still have a LONG way to go and most of everything is only half finished.  The room is still pretty bare because I'm still waiting on some furniture and manipulatives that have been ordered.  Fingers crossed they'll be delivered this week!
The birthday board still needs a few things.  Each little "gift" represents a month.  I found DVD gift boxes at the Dollar Tree and wrapped them with scrapbook paper.

My mom made these curtains!  They make the room look SO cute and they are SO cute!  I painted the wood around the window light yellow to match the wall on the other side of the room.  It was unpainted before.

I have a dock cleat and some rope holding the curtains back!

This is our letter of the week bulletin board.  My mom cut pieces of construction paper to make the nautical flags!  The top and bottom of the board have each letter in order A-Z!  She is too much!  It was a lot of work and took a long time but it looks amazing!

This is our word wall.  It is still missing a few things.  The bulletin board to the right will be our student of the week board.  This wall used to be pink!  The first thing I did in this room (after I cleaned it from top to bottom) was paint this wall yellow and it made a HUGE difference!  I am in LOVE!    

These are just a few pictures of the things that are mostly finished.  I can't to do a room reveal and show all the little details we've been working on!  I couldn't have done any of this without my parents' help!  Especially my mom!  She is so crafty!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Teacher Week '13: Let's Talk About Me Monday

So last night (very late) I was scrolling through Bloglovin and saw that pretty much everyone I follow was posting about Teacher Week '13.  I just had the chance to sit down and read about it and I am so excited!  I'm still very new to the blogging world and I love learning about all the cute linky parties!  So tonight and this week I'm linking up with Blog Hoppin' for Teacher Week '13! 

Each day this week there is a different topic to post about.  Here is this week's agenda!

Today is Let's Talk About Me! Monday!  Here are 10 fun facts about me!
1. This is my first year teaching and I am SO excited!  I am teaching CD (child development aka 4K) at a school I fell in love with while subbing earlier this year!  I could not be more excited about this new journey!

2. My mom and godmother teach CD together at another school in our district.  How lucky am I to have 2 amazing people to help me through my first year?!

3. I cheered for 10 years in middle school, high school, and college.  High school and all star cheerleading was (and still is) my passion.  I'm now coaching the Varsity cheerleading squad at my former high school with one of my best friends!  We are having too much fun reminiscing about the old days while we're with our new girls!

4. I have the cutest King Charles Spaniel named Tucker!  She is a little diva and the baby of the family.  Everyone says that Tucker is a boy's  name, but my Tucker is not the most lady-like.  She snores louder than a man and often burps after she eats.  She has kind of "let herself go" the last few years and got a little "fluffy" as my mom would say.  I think the name Tucker fits her well.  This is my brother's friends and me last Christmas when we decided to put on our tackiest Christmas sweaters and take a family picture.  I've known these guys for years and they are too funny!  There's never a dull moment at our house because it's always full of these guys.  Doesn't Tucker look adorable?!

5. I'm a little bit of a country girl.  My dad's family has a place out in the country that I've grown up going to.  We have about 100 acres of land on a river where we hunt and fish.  I learned how to drive our 4-wheeler out there by myself when I was 6.  I thought I was the coolest first grader in my class!  My dad is a huge hunter and fisherman.  Our foyer is full of wildlife!  (It really doesn't look as redneck as it sounds!)  This is my brother, two of his friends, my best friend Ashley, and me out at our family's country house after the boys went on an armadillo hunt.  I promise, we're really not rednecks!

6. I'm also a saltwater baby!  I was born and raised in Charleston on the Stono River.  I couldn't imagine not living near the water!  We spend almost every weekend out on our dock or on the boat.  I live less than 15 minutes away from the beach but I hardly ever go.  Why go to the beach when I can walk out my front door and be on the water??

7. I'm a huge baseball fan!  I've grown up around baseball because my brother has played since he was 4.  He played year round which I loved.  If we weren't at a cheerleading competition, we were at a baseball tournament pretty much every weekend till we both graduated from college.  One year my sorority sisters voted me "Most Likely to Know More About Baseball Than the Average Guy"! 

8. I have a sweet boyfriend named Ross.  He is the most thoughtful and sweetest person I have ever met.  He reminds me a lot of my dad, which I love.  We met last year in college and have been together pretty much ever since.  His hometown is the town we went to college in and he still lives there with his family.  I moved home to Charleston after I graduated in December.  He's a manager at Outback Steakhouse and one of the things I miss most about us living in the same town is him bringing me Outback food home when he got off work!  I miss him too of course, but man do I miss those cheese fries!  This is us shagging at my sorority's formal last year.

9. I have an amazing family!  I could not have asked for better parents.  I was truly blessed with them.  I only have one brother and he is three years younger than me.  My mom is one of 4 and my dad is one of 5 so I have lots of aunts, uncles, and cousins.  Almost all of us live in Charleston and I am so glad I have all of my family close to me.

10. I cannot live without my clothes steamer!  I have no idea how I lived without it!  I HATE ironing.  I hate it so much that I even bribe my mom to iron some of my clothes for me.  But then I got the most awesome Christmas gift ever...a steamer!  It has made my life SO much easier!  All of those delicate fabrics you can't iron but end up so wrinkly just hanging in your closet...they can all be steamed!  It is a lifesaver!  It's almost as fun to use as my laminator!

Well I hope you liked the first day of Teacher Week!  It's always so hard to come up with things about yourself!  I'm so excited for the classroom tour tomorrow!  I hope I can get it cleaned up a little bit to take some pictures! 

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

A Tale of Student Teaching Linky

Happy hump day!  I've had a very busy and exhausting week attending trainings and orientations but I've LOVED every minute of it!  I am just beyond thrilled to be starting my first year of teaching!  And I am totally IN LOVE with my school!!  I thought I loved it when I subbed there a few times, but I had no idea I would feel so at home there!  Everyone has been so nice and helpful!  Just like they were when I subbed there.  If you've ever subbed, you know that going into an unfamiliar school is the most awkward experience ever.  Sometimes it's great and sometimes it's a nightmare.  I've had my share of both.  And when I say nightmare, I don't necessarily mean the students.  A few times when I subbed at new schools, I didn't feel very welcomed but I did feel totally lost...literally and figuratively.  Anyway, my school was the complete opposite!  Today all of our staff members went to a training and walking in that room by myself was so intimidating.  I had only met a handful of the teachers on my hall and a few from when I subbed in January and May.  Right when I walked in, a teacher that helped me when I subbed for one of her grade level teammates back in January waved for me to come to her.  She recognized me and told me how she remembered when I subbed for some teachers on her hall.  A few others were sitting around her and they all said hi and they remembered me too.  She went on to tell me how excited she is that I'm a part of their staff and they thought I was great while subbing and so happy I'll be working with them!  I felt so honored!  I couldn't believe they remembered me!  And believe it or not, those teachers today were not the only ones that have come up to me to say they remembered me subbing and are so happy I'm working there now!  Y' makes me want to cry!!  All of the interviews I had at other schools and emails that told me I was not chosen for the position were so devastating, but that was all part of God's plan to put me in this school.  I feel so blessed!

Sorry for that little detour!  I just can't express how happy I am to have this amazing opportunity!  Back to what my post was supposed to be about!  I'm linking up with The Polished Teacher to talk about my student teaching experience!  If you're not following her, you need to!  She has the cutest blog and tons of resources!  She's about to begin her student teaching and she's asked everyone to share the good and bad things about their student teaching experience along with any advice you think she needs before beginning her journey.  She'd also love to hear from cooperating teachers!  Here's my Tale of Student Teaching!

This is a fun linky party and it would be so helpful to The Polished Teacher!  I'd also love to hear about your experiences too!  If you link up, be sure to email her because she's giving away your choice of a font or frames pack as a thank you!  She's also having a fabulous giveaway to celebrate her bloggy birthday!  You can enter every day to win some great prizes from other awesome bloggers!

I hope everyone had a happy hump day!  (My training started out with us watching the Geico camel commercial!)


Monday, August 5, 2013

MMI and Classroom Pictures!

Hi friends!  I am SO excited to blog today!  First, I have a HUGE announcement!   I HAVE A JOB!!!!  I've been keeping this secret for 2 whole weeks and I can FINALLY share that I will be teaching CD next year!!!!  I had an interview exactly 2 weeks ago, on my birthday, at a school I fell in love with while I was subbing.  I got a phone call less than 2 hours after my interview and got offered the job!  Can you think of a better birthday present than that?!?  I can't!  For those of you that don't know, CD stands for Child Development.  Here in my district, it's like 4 year old kindergarten.  This past school year after I graduated in December, I did a long term sub for 4 months serving as a preschool itinerant.  I traveled between 9 different schools working with 12 different CD students with IEPs.  I could not be more excited to be teaching CD this year because I've had the opportunity to work with so many wonderful CD teachers around the district.  I've been able to be in lots of different CD classrooms so I have tons of ideas that I can't wait to implement in my own classroom!  And did I mention my mom and godmother are CD teachers?!  I'm so blessed to have so many people I can turn to for help! 

Now, on to my Monday Made It!  I'm linking up with Tara from 4th Grade Frolics to share my Monday Made It!  (It's actually more like Monday My Mom and Dad Made It) 
While my friend and I were cleaning out the "cheer closet" at our high school's gym, I came across a few milk crates that we weren't going to be using.  Of course I grabbed them as fast as I could because I knew I could make seats out of them.  Here's what they looked like before:
I decided to spray paint them red to go along with my nautical theme and to match some super cute fabric I picked up at Wal-Mart the other day.  After I spray painted half of one, I got really busy and never got to finish them. (And the spray paint dripped everywhere and made me so mad!  Don't use Krylon spray paint for plastic!)  I had to go out of town unexpectedly and when I got home last night I came home to these:
My seats had been finished!!!  My amazing parents spent all weekend finishing the seats for me!  I was so surprised and excited!!  Not only can you sit on them, you can lift up the seat for storage!!  They're better than I imagined!  If you follow me on Instagram (mceachernh), you might have seen the picture of my sweet cousin Avery showing off my new seats!  (I won't be storing children in them)  AND they also finished a chair I was planning on repainting!  I found a chair at Goodwill for $20 that had too much potential to pass up.  I planned on painting it red, white, and blue, and recovering the seat cushion with the Wal-Mart fabric.  When I left, the project had barely been started...but when I came back...

My mom is SO crafty!  We might add a few more finishing touches to it but it's basically done!  I didn't get a chance to snap a before picture, but it was painted a navyish blue color before and needed a good sanding.  It looks awesome now if I do say so myself!  Here's a picture of my adorable cousins showing off the display of new chairs I came home to last night!
That's Cooper (6), Cameron (1 1/2), and Avery (3)!  They are our babies!  And don't they look adorable?!

Last, but not least: Classroom Pictures!!  I was finally allowed to get in the school to see my classroom for the first time today!  I had no idea what to expect when I got there, but I was a little surprised to find a completely empty room!  I was told my furniture wouldn't be delivered until Wednesday!  OMG!  Since this is a brand new class being added this year, all of my furniture will be brand spankin' new!  Fantastic right?!  The only problem's not here yet!!  I really don't have an idea of what is coming besides tables of some sort, chairs, and hopefully shelves and things for centers.  So after meeting all of the wonderful teachers I will be working with on my hall and doing a little unpacking, I spent the rest of the day with my mom staring at the walls trying to envision what I'm going to have and where it is all going to go!  My classroom is much smaller than a normal CD classroom.  It's going to be a tight squeeze when the furniture is delivered and even harder to find places on the floor for 20 mats for rest time!  Even though my room is on the small size, I LOVE the location!  I have a door that goes straight out to the playground and my room is easily accessible from the parking lot and playground which will be amazing when it's time to unload the massive amount of stuff I have taking up space in our playroom.  And I'm right next to a very nice and very helpful teacher that I already know I can go to for anything!  Ready to see some pictures??
 This is my classroom from the doorway!  There are cubbies, a cabinet, and bathroom on the left.  The SMART board and some bulletin boards are on the right.
 This is the view from the SMART board/front of the room.  The shelves on the left I get to keep, but the things inside the shelves belong to the last teacher who had this room.  BUT the boxes on top are brand new manipulatives that are ALL MINE! :)
 Another view from the SMART board/front of the room. 
 The view from the wall where the door is.  That board on the right is a bulletin board.  See my super convenient door that goes right out to the playground?!  I'm going to paint the door with chalkboard paint! :)  I can't wait!  I also LOVE my HUGE window!
 This is the front of the room.  The cubbies are behind me.  The SMART board is right smack dab in the middle of a large dry erase board.  The dry erase board has seen MUCH better days and is in need of some serious TLC!
 This is the view of the hall doorway from the playground door.  Under that blue paper is a chalkboard and another bulletin board. And yes, that wall is pink!  I would normally be thrilled, but I think it's going to clash with all of the red and blue I'm using for my nautical theme.  Luckily I'm free to paint the walls whatever color I want!  I'm thinking a light yellow?  Thoughts? 
And here is the outside of my door!  Room 109!  :)

So, it's obvious I have A LOT of work ahead of me, but this room has SO much potential!  I have trainings the rest of the week so I probably won't be able to get back to school to check out my new furniture.  But I'll be back bright and early Monday morning to get started!  Please let me know what you think and if you have any suggestions!!  :)