Hind Sight is 20/20

This isn't easy to admit. But I messed up. Royally. 
HOW many times had I thought to myself: "Self. You really need to back up your files on the server before something happens." And how many times had I ignored this wise advice? Too many to count.
Make sure you're backing up your projects. If you've ever experienced a computer crash or hard drive malfunction like I have, you know how awful it can be to lose pictures, files, and months or years of work. This article shares tips on organizing computer files and backing them up in case of hard drive failure.

Monday Made It - The Pencil Sharpener is CLOSED & Charlotte's Web

It's really hard for me to blog during the school year. I tend to do a lot of "insta-gramming" instead. Just little blurbs about what's happening each day in my classroom. Follow me HERE if you want to see what I'm up to. Anyway, I've decided to set a goal to blog at least once each month. I figure if I set this goal now, I won't have to make it one of my New Year's resolutions, right?
So, I've decided to join in for 4th Grade Frolics for Monday Made It. 
{NOTE: I actually made this a couple weeks ago, but haven't really shared it.}

5 for Friday Linky - How I Spent Fall Break 2015

Friday afternoon I sat down during my planning time and made a list. I wrote down all the things I HOPED to get accomplished over Fall Break.

Today I'm linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for Five for Friday to share what I've been up to this week.

I know most people try to spend their breaks on vacation somewhere exotic or even visiting family. Well, as much as I might enjoy laying around on the beach soaking up rays, I spent my week getting things done that I've been wanting to do for a while. I never have the time between teaching, children, dogs, sleeping...


Managing Multiple Classes

I teach fifth grade.
But at my school, fifth grade is departmentalized.
So I teach fifth grade STEM.
Every day I have 4 class periods.
Students rotate every 70 minutes, taking their supplies with them.
I stay in the room and teach the same content 4 times.
I love teaching science to multiple elementary classes (sort of like a middle school teacher) but there are some classroom management challenges too! Here are 6 teacher tips for managing multiple classes. #2 might be the best one!


Tech Thursday - SignUp Genius

I'm excited to be linking up with Teaching Trio for Technology Thursday this month!

I've been trying to think of which of the many great resources I wanted to share, and it has been hard to narrow it down. I finally decided to focus on something that I think would be helpful to every teacher - regardless of grade level or subject area.
Tech Tip: Use this free online tool to create sign-ups for everything from parent-teacher conferences to food donations for classroom parties to field trip volunteers. Read about how simple it can be for teachers to create an online sign-up.


Teacher Week - Favorite Subject

I'm kind of sad that the week is over and that this will be the last time I am linking up with Blog Hoppin' for Teacher Week 2015. This challenge has really given me a chance to get back into gear. To reflect. To share. To learn about other teachers. To find some great blogs to follow.

But the day has come.
Today's topic is to share what my favorite subject is to teach and why.

Teacher Week - Sanity Savers

Day 4 of Teacher Week.
I'm linking up with Blog Hoppin' to share some tips about how I survive my life as a teacher.
I really only have one tip:


Teacher Week - Classroom Tour

It's Wednesday and for today's link up with Blog Hoppin' it's time to take a tour of my classroom!
I know some of you might like scrolling through TONS of pictures, I for one worry that I'm going to bore you with another post that is just like the one on the "My Classroom" tab at the top of my blog. I hate being repetitive - probably because I spend most of my day repeating myself to fifth graders.


Teacher Week - Make Ahead Meals

Day two of Teacher Week and I'm linking up again with Blog Hoppin' to share my favorite "Make Ahead Meals".
Let's start with this.
I'm not the cook in my house.
That's my sweet husband's job. (thank goodness)
He actually enjoys cooking and experimenting with food.
And I love eating what he makes.
It's the perfect combination!

My favorite things about my classroom

I'm excited to be joining in with Teaching Trio for their monthly Favorite Things Linky.
This month's theme is "A Few of My Favorite Things About My Classroom".

Teacher Week - 5 Fun Facts About Me!

I'm a little late tonight, but I'm still really excited to be joining in Teacher Week 2015!
Blog Hoppin' is hosting this fun, week long linky party.
I can't wait to get to know some new teacher bloggers.

 But first, here are 5 fun (and random) facts about me!

10 things I wish I had known before I started teaching...

10 things I wish I had known: I really wish someone had given me these words of advice before I started teaching. It wasn’t until I actually got into my first classroom and started teaching that I realized I had NO CLUE what it meant to be a teacher.
When I graduated in 2006 and started looking for my first teaching job, I had no real understanding of what was required of a teacher. Oh, I could rattle off a bunch of buzz words and "talk a good game", but until I actually got into my first classroom and started teaching I had NO CLUE. 

12 of the Best Tips for Surviving the School Year

I recently came across a blog post by Matt at Digital Divide & Conquer that gave some funny (yet insightful) tips for surviving another year of teaching. It inspired me, so I've decided to get caught up on blogging (I've been totally swamped with back to school preparation) and document my own goals based on his list. Here goes...

Monday Made It - ThingLink

Technology hack: How to use ThingLink in the classroom. Tips and ideas for classroom teachers and elementary educators.

 My big project this week was to continue working on getting my blog up and running. I've been linking up to other sites, posting about products, and finding others to follow too. But I realized that I had not done anything to the other pages of my site (besides the home feed). 


Five for Friday Linky Party - July 24th

It's already been another week!!!
Time to link up with Kacey from Doodlebugs Teaching for a fun friday linky party.  
 This is my first time joining, but I have LOVED reading others' posts so I felt it was time to "give back".

Monday Made It - July 20

Every week I watch all the blog posts for Monday Made It and I think to myself, "I make things. I could join this linky party. I'm going to do it...next week..."

This morning (well actually this afternoon since I ACTUALLY slept in almost until NOON) I started reading the posts again and decided TODAY IS THE DAY. So, for the first time EVER I am going to link up with 4th Grade Frolics for Monday Made It. Yay me!

The Sunday Scoop (07.12.15)

I decided to link up with Teaching Trio tonight to get my week organized and publicly proclaim my goals. Maybe this will help me stick to them?!?

Here is my Sunday Scoop for July 12.


Week 4: Follow Frenzy

The past month has been amazing!
I have learned so much, felt motivated again, and made some new connections!
I am especially thankful to Third in Hollywood, Sparkling in Second, Peppy Zesty Teacherista, and Teach Create Motivate for organizing the #tptsellerchallenge. What a way to get myself going.
During this challenge, I have focused on making myself more present in social media platforms as well as updating and posting on my blog.

For this week's challenge, I chose 6 of the MANY connections that I made through this challenge.


A Giveaway!

In an effort to be better connected with other educators and TpTers, I have joined several Facebook groups, opened an Instagram and Twitter account, and started following other teacher blogs. One of the blogs that I started following is Angela Gatt's Fun in Fourth.

And right now she is celebrating her 200th blog post with this giveaway!

Just enter this RAFFLECOPTER.  
The more entries, the more chances to win!  
The Rafflecopter closes Friday, July 10 and a winner will be announced Saturday, July 11.


Make Your Masterpiece

I'm kind of a slow poke when it comes to creating new resources. Perhaps a better description is that I am a perfectionist. This leads to me taking forever to finalize a product before taking it live on my store. So this challenge was especially difficult for me.

It's My Birthday!

Today I celebrate another birthday.
I remember as a kid being jealous that my best friend was "nine days older" than me.
Now, I tease her that she is "nine days older" than me.
Isn't it funny how your perspective changes?

This is me when I was only ONE year old!
 This is me now. And, no, I'm not telling my age. :)

Well, in honor of my birthday, I'm posting a gift in my TpT store
It's going to be FREE for just 24 hours.

It's not free anymore, but it is still just as cute.
Click on the image to purchase your copy today!

And eat a piece of cake for me too!


Favorite Things to do in the Summer

This is my VERY FIRST time linking up with Teaching Trio's Favorite Things Linky Party. I've seen blog posts about Linky Parties and quite frankly I didn't have the slightest idea what they were. BUT thanks to the #tptsellerchallenge I have really been working on getting myself involved in the blogosphere. (Is that even a word?) So when Kristen Doyle invited me to participate I decided, what the heck? I'll try it.

I have to admit that I spent probably WAY too much time getting my three favorites organized, but I'm really excited to share my some of my favorite things to do in the summer.
Thanks for checking out my blog post.
If you have any ideas for good books leave them in the comments below. I'm almost done with this one so I need some suggestions.


TpT Seller Challenge Week 2: Dare to Dream

When I saw the focus of this week's challenge I had to laugh a little.
Last week I was supposed to be updating products, but I got ended up getting distracted by trying to start my blog. So after spending an enormous amount of time on blogging last week, I have another week to continue improving and creating my own blogging style.


More Makeover Madness

I've spent the week working on bringing my store into the social networking age. It's now on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and Blogger. Tonight (this last night of the Week 1 Challenge: Makeover Madness) I've worked on updating a couple more products. As long as I'm feeling motivated...

Product Update #2: Attitudes about Learning Poster Set



iTeachSTEM on Instagram

So last night I officially felt old.

Really old.

Why? Well, I was laying on a picnic blanket in the front yard having my oldest son help me set up an Instagram account.

As he walked me through the process and explained the different features, I had a flashback. I remembered sitting on the couch at my mom's house helping her to set up a Facebook account a few years ago. I remembered all of her questions (that seemed so silly to me at the time). I remember trying to teach her what "liking" and "tagging" and "posting" meant. I looked at my son, working so hard to bring his mom into the digital/social media age, and I couldn't help but laugh!

So, the results from last night?
I officially have an Instagram account for iTeachSTEM! Yay me!
iTeachSTEM on Instagram

#makeovermadness #TpTsellerchallenge #teachinganolddognewtricks


iTeachSTEM on Facebook

As I spent time this week giving some of my products a much needed "facelift", I felt inspired to create a Facebook page for iTeachSTEM. I'm really hoping to be able to keep up with Facebook, Pinterest, this blog, and creating new resources. Thanks to the #TPTSellersChallenge I'm feeling especially motivated. Just the kick in the pants I needed.

iTeachSTEM on Facebook
iTeachSTEM on TpT

Thanks for reading my random middle of the night musings.


Week 1: Makeover Madness

So many of my early products could use a good facelift, but I chose one of my "summer" products for this challenge. Several years ago I put together cute "goodie bags" for my students. They loved them.



I've actually had my teacher blog set up since LAST summer.
And then life happened...

My goals for THIS summer:
(1) Start posting on my blog
(2) Participate in the TpT Seller Challenge
(3) Finish (and post) at least one full unit bundle - Solar System or Bottle Rockets STEM Challenge
(4) Update product listings to include links to related products
(5) Read TWO books for pleasure*
(6) Take a nap once a week*

Thanks to
for coming up with such a fun way to get me going!

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