Silence for Sandy Hook Elementary.

Sunday, December 16, 2012 No comments

Data Binder

Saturday, November 24, 2012 No comments

I have been asked recently about my data binder! the end of the year- it is FULL!! This is only the beginning therefore, it is kind of empty. I am very proud of my data binder because it is perfect.
This is the cover of my binder. If you know me, you will know that I LOVE polka dots, bling, and glitter! This is a great way to just store their information and then lock it away for 3 years.

This is one of the first things inside of the binder. Previously, I wrote about my IEP's and keeping track. If you missed it, it is located HERE. I then include the goals for each student so it is all at my fingertips.

In our district, we give Fall and Winter diagnostics. This is a reflection of Spring FCAT and FALL Diagnostics,

After every math test, my students will go onto ThinkCentral to enter their math test. If you use the GOMath! Series, then you most likely have access to I LOVE this website. After I review the tests, I can see where my students were weak or where they were strong. I then have ThinkCentral re-teach the material to them. Re-Teach Tracker is a great way for me to track if they have learned the material or not.

This is the Progress Monitoring that i use to track their grades. These is another way to see if I have re-taught or need to re-teach.

The picture above is the way that we track the students writing. We do Palm Beach Writes and the students write and we grade it based on the holistic scoring by the state of Florida.

Happy Shopping and Happy Pinning!

Holiday Season is upon us.

Sunday, November 18, 2012 No comments
Can you believe next Thursday is Thanksgiving?

In our county, we are only open on Monday and Tuesday. Woohoo!!! However, that means it will be two days of craziness! On that note...let's move forward! Our students have just learned how to multiply 2 digit by 2 digits. This week we will be doing a lot of 2 digit by 2 digit and then 3 digit by 2 digit the following week. I decided that we are going to play lots of educational games this week. For math, I am going to write two digits on each plate. The kids will have the plate hung from their neck on a string. They will then have to find a partner to make a multiplication problem. Once they found a partner, they will multiply! It's called a multiply party! I hope to get pictures to show you!

Let's get started on a great week! I will be back on Wednesday!


Saturday, November 3, 2012 No comments

I know in Palm Beach County, the teachers are evaluated on a system called Marzano's iObservation. Sometimes I like it, sometimes I don't. One really AWESOME thing that I appreciate about this program is that it asks for teachers to create I Can statements for students EVERYDAY.At first, I found this very very very very time consuming. Then...I learned to adapt. I found out that I should keep the I can statements up on the board...but I should have something that will hold them accountable. I keep up the words "By the end of this lesson, i will be able to..." and then I put the goal for the day up in a different color. The students come in the morning, every morning, and fill in the goals. At the end of every block, they enter what they think they are. They also tell me how much they really paid attention. This goal chart has been fantastic in my classroom. I give it to the students on Monday, they file it on Friday. I am in a win-win situation. I use it during parent conferences- instructional reviews- and during Marzano observations. This is a PDF file and it has many questions and they work for many ages. I took some questions from someone else- and I cannot remember who so.... THANK YOU!! I hope that this document can help your students succeed. Here is the Link for it- and it's FREE!!!

IEP Mania

Saturday, October 27, 2012 No comments


A lot of teachers always struggle with ways and things to keep track of IEP's. We learn so much when we are in college, and then they expect us to use every tool when we graduate? NOOO way! How can we keep track of SOOOOO many students? We are handed a HUGE packet (usually) the first week of school. Then we are expected to memorize the students needs? Uhm...does anyone else struggle with this? So I created my cheat sheet.

I hated reading those GIGANTIC packets of information for IEP' I created the IEP Goals & Accommodations. I made two documents. One was so that I had a complete list of all of my students and their goals for the year. I print this out on NEON pink and then I keep it out during the week so if my students are doing something, I can look to see if they are meeting their IEP Goals. This is a great way to do a quick glance. You will also notice that some students have things underlined. I also put in things that the students are capable of doing. This was mainly what was said about the students last year. If you want a copy for yourself... then POP OVER HERE!

 My second one is a way to track the progress of the students throughout the year. I use this so that when it is time to visit the IEP time, I can easily students were or were not capable of this. I can say...yes! They met this goal, or noooooo :( they didn't meet this goal. If you want to have this one...he (yes, it is a he) will cost you $2.00 at my TpT store. I hope you all enjoy this and it works for you!

Happy Shopping & Happy Pinning!

Life as we know it.

Friday, October 26, 2012 No comments

Hello everyone!

I am making a vow...right NOW! I vow that I will make an update at least once every 3 days. I will make sure I have time and I promise to make you as happy as you all make me! I wanted to tell everyone how happy I am right now. We (unfortunately) had a hurricane day today, which is like a SNOW DAY for us! My mom won District Vice President for America's Business Women's Association. She is the 1st one on the second row. I am so proud of my mom. I cannot believe how far she has come in such an amazing organization. I still have not gotten engaged BUT I did get Wesley (boyfriend) to say yes to a Disney trip on November 9th. (WOOOOOOHOOOOO) 

I joined a very good club at my school. The club is for teachers who want to bring morale of the school back up. Which brings me to the first freebie that you can download today. We've Been Gobbled! is my newest creation. It is just like You've been booed except, it is for Thanksgiving time. We are starting it next week! I think we are giving it to one person on every other team level. I hope this inspires teachers around the world! thing number 3- I created FCAT type like questions for my students and I want to share it with you! I like not having a thousand things turned in every day. I also like to save paper! So I created a different type of "Calendar Math" This one is 4 questions a day, based on what the students have learned so far. My kids love Calendar Math and go very very quick with it. I wanted to make sure I started to introduce FCAT 2.0 like questions and lo and behold-Questions 2.0 was born!!! Questions 2.0 can be found HERE. There is another page, and I am using it for the front and back. 

WHEW! I have more...but you will have to pop in tomorrow to see!

It's been forever!

Saturday, September 29, 2012 No comments

Hello everyone!
It has been almost a month since I have been on here. It was a crazy month and I feel like I finally have my head back on my shoulders. Here is my update from the last month!
1. We had the 11 day count and I gained 6 awesome new students in my class!
2. We have instructional review next Friday, so we can be observed by district. To be quite honest, I LOVE IRT days! I feel like it's my day to showcase how awesome my class is!
3. I am trying to plan a field trip to St. Augustine for my 4th Graders.
4. I am on the chair of Red Ribbon Week, and Career day!
5. I am also on the chair of Positive Behavior for my school!
6. I am getting ready to start planning (hopefully) a wedding! 
7. I sign myself up for many many different things in the school....

With all of that said, I want to just say WHEW! I love it! I love challenging myself and making our school a better place. I am excited to put many great things together and have a great school year. Well...lets keep moving forward. I have many things to give you so that you can have a successful year as well.

I made these amazing flyers for our St. Augustine trip...In order to help the parents in our school, we provide fundraisers for our students to help pay for the trip. This year, we are having "Festive Fridays!" I included the "Career Day" flyer! I got the graphics from (LOVE). I also included our flyer for Root for FCAT. We are not allowed to have rallies for the students, but we are allowed to help them feel smart, and wise. I am so excited for Festive Fridays. Be on the lookout for some awesome and entertaining pictures!

On Tuesday, October 2nd, we are having a fun "Jammies Night" at school. The activity is called "Families Building Better Readers."(FBBR) Our fabulous Reading Coach has had a huge play in what is going on for FBBR. This year, another teacher and I are going to be reading a book to parents. I will model what parents should be doing while their students are reading. I also made a "check for understanding" check mark with several (okay a lot!) of questions on it for the parents. I feel like this will help my students answer questions in their Reading Log. I love the check mark and it is now available to find on my TpT store, and it is free!!!
I know I have so much more to talk about,  but I need to go make some tests for my students!! 

Happy Pinning & happy shopping!!


Monday, September 3, 2012 15 comments

Wow... I always forget how young the students are when they first enter our class. Since my "things" are coming in so young, they don't yet have a full aspect of 4th grade & expectations. I had to adjust some things because the students are still at a point where they won't admit if they understand something or need help. We are also working on self-assessment for the students. The students have to analyze themselves by a 1-4 scale. One being a -"Help me! I don't understand". A two- is "I need some help, but it can wait a few minutes." A three is "I am good to go!" A four is "I can teach someone!" Some of my munchkins though are putting up 4's (as a perfect score) when they don't know anything. So I decided to go to my helping hand to guide me as to what to do with my students. Pinterest. Pinterest had amazing things but then I modified it. I created an awesome document that contains two different things. 
1. Is the scale on one side. 

2. The other side is to show me if they need help after learning something new. I used the same paper and flipped it in the printer. Now, I can have the students mark if they are stuck, or good to go. They get to keep this on their desk and on the corner so it can indicate if they need assistance.

This last picture was shown because I have about 35 students (between two classes). I punched a hole into each of the circles. I then took a paper clip and pushed it through the hole. I used some cool duct tape (zebra) and sealed it shut so it didn't poke the kids or separate. I am so excited to start this tomorrow. I know the kids will love it!! If you would like the document, you can go to my TN store or my TpT store. I hope you enjoy it. 
Happy shopping & Happy Pinning!

School has begun!!

Sunday, August 26, 2012 No comments
Can you believe that school has begun? has in Palm Beach County, Florida so naturally I assume that it has everywhere else! My first week has been truly amazing! I have a great group of students and we have already started working on WBT. We worked on some great ideas and I will be sure to post about WBT in two days! Today..I want to show you my classroom. I mentioned in a few posts, that my classroom will be Dr. Seuss. I did not take that lightly. So here are pictures of "Seuss"ian classroom!!!!! (Can you tell I am excited?)
Here is 2 of the 3 backboards. You are also looking at the back of my library (which I forgot to take a picture of). The back board will be used for Math Vocab words. Above these boards, is the alphabet with Dr. Seuss characters. (Oops..I forgot that too!!)

Here is 1 of the backboards. I also put the classroom jobs in this picture, These jobs are for my classroom and not the afternoon class. The students will also  use this door to get to the restroom.

Here is where I have the math vocab words. I made this document, and  you can find it here! It's only $1.00 here!!

This is the Writing Center. I downloaded the pencil from Pinterest. Thank you to the The Teacher Wife for supplying such an amazing document!! I printed it at Office Depot and had them laminate because I couldn't print such beautiful colors on my printer.

This is is my favorite corner of the classroom. I made these amazing mailboxes for my students because it drives me nuts seeing paper on the students desk when they aren't in class. They check their mailbox every morning. I bought this awesome box from a thrift store in Davie, FL. I then bought a ton of scrapbook paper from Joanns and then I used ModPodge to attach it to the mailbox. I don't know if you can see, but I have my WBT signs above my board. Every morning, I review it with my students. The students look at it and say "OH!!! Ms. Margolin! I want to teach this one!!!!" Of course, they all pitch in and want to teach it.

Our "Seuss"tastic schedule.

Here are all of the WBT rules. I follow all of the signals but I wanted to have a "Seuss"ian sign. On the  left, you will see the color chart that the students have to follow. This is a school clip chart by RIck Morris. There are many things you can do. Google (or search on Pinterest) for Clip Chart. It is awesome. My kids understand the difference from good to bad and will even get upset if they are on a lower color.

Another fantastic idea from Pinterest. I have seen so many variations and this is the one that I have chosen. It has some awesome balloons that are like Dr. Seuss.
All of my students have a number but instead of calling them #1, #2...I call them Things! My principal came in and saw this and was shocked and thought it was a great idea! So they each know their thing number and will keep track of their number. The picture above shows where the students need to stand during line. They have done a great job using this to line up.

Outside my classroom, I have a bulletin board. It is to be updated at least once a month. On the top, I write You are o"fish"ally a 4th grader. This was taken before i put their names on the fish. When they came for Meet The Teacher, they were ecstatic to see their names.

For Future Work.

This is the newest addition to our house. Her name is Penelope. We got her in June and we moved 20 days later. Here is the new apartment with her watching the weather channel. We were watching the Tropical Storm Isaac pass us on The Weather Channel. I have never had a dog that watched TV, but she does. 
 I hope you get some awesome ideas from my classroom. Have a great year, and Happy Pinning!

Calendar Math

Saturday, August 4, 2012 2 comments

Last year when I created the morning “work”, I always did a worksheet. It was to basically make them sit and get ready for the morning. I tried to make it so it was geared for what they were to learn through the day but most of them just shoved it in their desk. It was a very upsetting time because they just didn’t care. This year...will be different! Mark my words! This year, for morning work my students will be doing Calendar Math! Hooray! I have always been skeptical about it because I thought it was for the younger grades. I found a couple of ideas from pinterest (amazing website!) and wanted to rearrange things so it would suit the students that are in my class. Lo and behold the newest {frankenstein} creation...MY CALENDAR MATH!

I did not put it as an entire page because we have a limited amount of copies that we can make throughout the year. Therefore, it is only half a page for each day. I only collect the Calendar Math on Friday's but it is a grade. I put these in a folder and then I have them keep it there all year long. This will help them see themselves grow. As we get further into the chapters of the books, I will change it so that the students can gain more experience on that particular subject.

This document is a freebie on my TN's store and use it as much as you would like. Happy shopping and happy pinning!

folder covers

Saturday, July 28, 2012 No comments

Hooray! It’s almost time for school! We go back to “decorate” our classroom on the 14th of August and school starts the following Monday! I am way too excited about this and I know that I should be saying “SUMMER WENT BY TOO FAST!!!” I’m not though! I am so eager to get to know my new class and smell all the brand new supplies and help them ALL pass the FCAT test! This post is to show you what I decided to give to my students for the reading log folder. As you already know...I LOVE making projects but today contained none of my fancy schmancy machines that I own. Today I used shipping (packaging) tape, 25 one color folder (I chose blue), glue stick, and a color printer ( I chose Office Depot to print-I don’t have a color printer. 
I will give you step by step directions on how to create this masterpiece!
Step 1. Buy the folders, print the document, and have a glue stuck ready. 
Step 2. Glue the paper corners (or the middle) just so its enough and paste it to the front of the folder.

Step 3. Cut the shipping (packaging) tape to the size of the folder. Then paste it to the folder. The tape will act as a laminator instead of running the folder through a laminator. This will ensure that the folder will stay firm throughout the year that the students will be able to transport the folder every day to and from work.

I place the reading logs that was posted here and put it inside of the folder. 


Thursday, July 26, 2012 No comments

Have I mentioned that I am Do It Yourself teacher? I love buying new machines and creating magnificent things for my classroom. I currently have one cricut, one laminator, and two xyron sticker creator, and one amazing paper cutter. My newest creation is tabs for notebooks. This year, we are doing “Lucy Calkins Writing Workshop,” and I went to her conference in June and it was truly amazing. I cannot wait to incorporate this into my classroom. One thing that they had us do was create tabs using post-its in composition notebooks. YES! That is great! Then after using it for one week straight and eight hours a day...they start to wear/fall off. Uh Oh...How in the world can I create better tabs in a notebook instead of post its? Also, is there a way that I can create a tab to use for my reading progress monitoring, writing progress monitoring, and math progress monitoring binders? I really don’t want to buy 3 packs of 8 tabs for $3.00 a pack! I felt my piggy bank break! :( Then I was playing on Pinterest and saw someone create their own sticky notes. Unfortunately, I cannot find out who pinned it so thank you for giving me the inspiration and allowing me to modify it for my needs! :) I will walk you through the stages of what I did, and hopefully you can make it for your needs/wants!
Step 1. Create the document on your computer, If you are using a hole punch then I suggest you make it just as big as the hole punch. I created 3 circles on one row, and then three on the next. I was not sure if I could fit three rows so I left it at two. I printed out the pages and then placed the post-it notes on top of where the circles are. 

Step 2. Once you have put the post it notes nicely on the paper as seen print it. Use the paper that you have just put the post its on to run through the printer. It will print exactly the same thing that was underneath it. 
Step 3. Remove the post-it from the printed paper. Then take the post-it and do one of two things. One-Use scissors and cut it (which takes eons,,,well it seems like eons). Two- Get an amazing hole punch (like me) and make sure you can see what you’re cutting and punch away. I bought the ek 2.25 large circle. I then flipped it over and was able to see what I was punching and then I had it punched and ready for the next step!
Step 4. could totally just put the post-it note on the paper and then you are done! You could also take a glue stick and glue one half of the circle and then hold it down on the paper. This will make sure that you definitely have it down! Unfortunately, I am not like that. I like to have it secure to the paper and use my really fun machines that I have! I ended up putting it through the Xyron Create-A-Sticker machine. 
Step 5. I then took the sticker and cut the back in half. This allowed me to paste it firmly on the paper. I separated them out so that I could see each one. I like being able to see it all. This binder is what I will be using for my monitoring. I made one for each subject. The time frame was about an hour each binder. I think that by the time I got to my 3rd (and final) binder...It was like 45 minutes but I probably got it done! 

 Side note!!
Today, I created more but instead of using post it notes...I used a very light scrapbook paper (not cardstock!). I then was able to (dare I say it...?) glue it down! I know I am against the gluing of anything but my students will be inserting this into their writing notebook and I needed something that they will be able to access (without destroying anything)  for the first day of school!