Wednesday, July 31, 2013

FYI for TPT buyers

These past few days, I have been disheartened. I have found many of my resources, paid and free, offered on other people's websites. Most of these were school websites on individual teacher's pages. Last night, I found over 30 of my resources, mostly paid, with just a simple Google search. I found quite a few more today.

I know most of you reading this would never, ever share what you buy on TPT. Every seller that I know has terms of use that state the resource is only for a SINGLE classroom. That's one classroom, not one grade level, not one school.

I'm gonna be blunt here and you may hate me but I'm a little fed up. It's stealing when you share what you buy on TPT. When you leave feedback and say that you shared it with your teammates, still stealing. When you tell a seller through email or on Facebook that your entire team loved it...still stealing! I know it doesn't seem like it but it is. You are taking money out of a seller's store. This is the same as stealing from a store like Target or Walmart.

Your teammates may ask you where you got a certain resource and it's tempting to share with them. Don't do it! If you love the resource, support the teacher who put countless hours into creating it for you to just download and use. You can always point your friends to the blog or TPT store where you got it. It kills me when I go to a training and the trainer says that he or she got a resource from TPT and they know they're not supposed to share but they do. Teachers should be good examples. Unfortunately, we are not being good examples when it comes to this.

Did you know TPT offers a multiple user option to help combat this problem? It's a pretty new feature and I'm going to show you how to use it.  When you buy a multiple user option, the price is almost always cheaper than the original purchase price. By doing this, teacher authors are trying to encourage you to share legally.

Here are some tutorials to add those multiple user options. The first one is for is you've already bought a resource and want to share it with your teammates.

 This tutorial is for adding the multiple user option when you first purchase the item.

Another problem that I think led to my resources being shared is that the place where the file was stored was not secure. If you don't use a password to access the materials, you shouldn't store it there. If you just store it on Google Drive and have it as public, anyone can get to it.
This even applies to freebies. When you post someone else's freebie, you are driving traffic from their site and hurting them. You can't share freebies with your teammate's either. Email them the link to the blog or the TPT store. It is perfectly fine to share freebies this way.

Do you need a secure place to store your files? I use Dropbox and I love it.

I add some files to my Dropbox on my home computer and can get them from my school computer. It's secure because it's password protected. It's free up to 18 GB and I have found that I don't ever use all the space. Click here or on the picture to check out Dropbox.

I know all TPT sellers would appreciate everyone playing by the rules and not sharing what they buy (unless you buy that multiple user option.)
I hope these tutorials help you and you don't hate me for telling it like it is. Thank you to everyone who doesn't share! You make creating resources for you worth it. Thank you from the bottom of my heart!

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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday: My Dream Classroom

This week's topic is all about wishing and hoping. Who wouldn't want to design their own classroom if they could? I have an older classroom and I am always thinking about what I would want if my classroom could be redesigned. I know I'm not the only one!

If I could design my own classroom, here are my top ten things that I would want. My top thing would still be an Activboard but since I already have one, I am going to leave that off this list. I am including things that I don't have but wish I did.

(1) Storage, storage, storage.

My room doesn't have much storage. I am constantly try to find ways to store all my stuff and I have lots of stuff. I would love to have a closet or somewhere to put my stuff where I don't have to look at it all the time.

(2) Tables.

I love the idea of tables in a classroom. I hate how desks scoot all over the place and I am constantly having to rearrange them. Tables would be so great for group work and for getting kids to talk to meet those speaking and listening standards.

(3) an iPad for every student

I love my iPad and wish I could use it with every student. How much easier would it be to individualize instruction if every student had one? I think the iPad minis would be great because they would fit their little hands.

(4) a wonderfully organized and comfortable classroom library

I can't find where this library is from. If you know, please let me know so I can give you credit.

I would love to have room for a couch in my classroom. What kid wouldn't want to plop down on a  comfy couch to read?

(5)  a cubby area in the classroom

Several of the new schools in my district have a cubby area when you enter the room. I would love to have one! We have old lockers that the kids have a hard time opening. They won't hardly close all the way when their backpacks are in there. Drives me crazy!

(6) more bulletin boards

I have an entirely empty wall that could contain bulletin boards. I don't have much of a place to hang student work. More bulletin boards would solve my problem.

(7) magnetic whiteboard

It would be so much easier to hang things if my whiteboards were magnetic. 

(8) the ability to control the temperature

My district controls the temperature of our classroom's from a central location. I would love to adjust it based on my kids and the location of my room. My room gets sun at different parts of the day than the rooms across the hall. It may be freezing in my room but sweltering across the hall. Doesn't really make sense and makes us all uncomfortable.

(9) lights that are not fluoresecent

The lights give me a headache at times and can be really harsh. I would love to have more natural light in the classroom. 

(10) Hokki stools
These stools seem like the perfect solution to wiggly kids. The stools move but are stable enough to keep the kids safe as they sit. It's an interesting idea for sure!

I would love for you to join this linky party. If you can't link up today, this linky party will be open until next Tuesday. I would love to see what would be in your dream classroom.

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Saturday, July 27, 2013

For My 3rd Grade Friends

Happy Saturday! My free Saturdays are gradually winding down. One more weekend before I have to head back to school. Where, oh where, did the summer go? Anyways, I'm just dropping by to let you know that I finished the 3rd grade version of my Common Core Wrap Ups. (Click here to view my original post on the CC Wrap Ups.) It sure made me thankful that I teach 2nd grade. You third grade teachers have a lot of standards to cover. I hope this pack makes your life a little easier!

Click on any picture or click here to view in my TPT store.
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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday Linky Party

I love top ten lists! Every time I see one, I have to read it. I thought it would be fun to have a top ten list for different teaching topics so I thought I would host a fun, new linky party called "Top Ten Tuesday" and have a different topic each week.

(1) My Activboard

 I didn't have my Activboard at the beginning of last year and I was totally lost. The day my Activboard got moved to my new classroom was a happy day!

(2) My Scotch laminator
I love how thick the laminating is and how the laminating doesn't peel. I broke the feeder tray but my laminator still works. 

(3) My Erin Condren life planner

This really helps keep me sane when I can't remember anything.

(4) Post-it notes

I love Post-it notes. I have tons of them. I'm trying to figure out a use for the really big ones they have now but I'm sure I'll end up getting them.

(5)  My Brother P-Touch label maker

This label maker is so easy to use and the labels really stick and look nice.

(6)  my bell

I ring this bell when I'm done with a reading group or math group and ready for the groups to change. My kids transition so much better with this than with me telling them to change.

(7) Scholastic News

I got Scholastic News through a DonorsChoose project last year and loved them. They are great ways to teach science and social studies. My students loved them and the technology piece is wonderful. I am excited that I got another project for them funded for this school year!

(8) Ticonderoga pencils

These pencils are the best pencils. They sharpen easily and don't break as easily as some of the others.

(9) the Quietest Classroom Pencil Sharpener
I hate sharpening pencils! This pencil sharpener saved me from hours in front of a mechanical pencil sharpener. I wouldn't let my students use the electric sharpener after going through 3 in one year. They are way to expensive for that! My students could use this one easily and I could turn the sharpening over to them.

(10)  Lots and lots of books

I love books and my classroom is filled with them. My students always have plenty to read because I have so many books.

I would love for you to link up. What are your classroom must haves? I can't wait to see what you love and what I need for my classroom. This linky party will stay active until next Tuesday when I  post another topic.

What top ten lists would you like to see?

Monday, July 22, 2013

10 Things I've Learned from Teaching

I'm linking up with Miss Kindergarten's fun linky party to share 10 things that I've learned from teaching. 

(1) Beware of sneezes. I've gotten really good at knowing when a sneeze is coming and turning away. My first few years of teaching I was constantly sick. 
Funny story: My first year teaching, a student sneezed on me. I encouraged him to cover his mouth when he sneezes because he could get me sick if he sneezes on me. So he said, "Yeah, if you're sick, we'll have to get a prostitute."  I didn't know what to say to that but we did learn the word "substitute" that day.

(2) "Hanitizer" is very important. No matter how many classes I've had, they always call hand sanitizer "hanitizer." It's cute so I don't correct it!

(3) You could tell your students a million times that I always starts with a capital letter but they won't remember or they will capitalize every word that starts with an i. Ugh! It kills me every year!

(4) You are not going to get everything done. Something that I think will take a short amount of time always ends up taking forever and I've learned not to stress about it. 

(5) Technology will not work when you most need it to.  Have a back up plan.

(6) Don't feel pressure to teach exactly like everyone else. Develop your own style and embrace it. I teach totally different than some of my teammates and that is okay.

(7) Create a good relationship with your  teammates. They are my lifeline at times and I love working with them. We balance each other out. Plus they make staff meetings more bearable. 
So true!

(8) Don't lug all your work home just to leave it in the car. Leave it at school. Your back will thank you!

(9)  Take some time for yourself. Teaching is a never ending job and it's important to have some time where you aren't thinking about your classroom.

(10) Realize that you are the most stable part of the day for some of your kiddos. Love them and appreciate their little personalities. 

Go check out the blog posts in the linky party!

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Sunday, July 21, 2013

Check Out My New Look

Hey everybody! I just wanted to do a quick post to show off my new look. Isn't it cute! Thanks to Becca from Jumping Jax Designs for working so hard on my blog and making it look exactly like I wanted. If you are looking for a blog designer, check her out.

Hope you have a fabulous Sunday!

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Friday, July 19, 2013

Favorite Pins Friday (7-19)

Time is tick, tick, ticking away! Where did my summer go? I have 17 days before I go back to school and 6 of those days are going to be spent in trainings. This week, I have spent some time in my classroom trying to get a head start on some things.

If you follow me on Instagram, you've already seen this image. If not, you can follow me @swimmingintosecond.

I've been furiously pinning this week and trying to find some new back to school ideas. But mostly I've found great things that have nothing to do with school.

School Ideas

Love this idea for counting books at home from Two Can Do It! You can use my freebie from Owl-Ways Be Inspired to keep the count.

This is a why didn't I think of that moment. So simple and such a great idea from First Grade in Foxwell Forest!

Cute pencil signs from Mrs. Lirette's Learning Detectives.

Love this sign from Creekside Teacher Tales! Perfect for the library!

 Genius app from Doodle Smith Ink on iTunes.

Home Ideas

Pin from Sarah Richardson design

If you remember that the beginning of summer, I said that I was going to put a backsplash in my kitchen. Well, it didn't happen but maybe sometime soon. One of my main problems was trying to figure out where to put it. I have an awkward space above my kitchen sink and I wasn't sure if I should carry the backsplash up the wall. This solves my problem. They used pencil molding on top of the backsplash to give it a finished look.

A girl can dream! Idea from Greenbelt Homes.

My dream space from Freshome.


Peanut butter pie from Cook the TV. Yum!

Oreo cheesecake bites from Mel's Kitchen Cafe

Other Stuff

Important to remember from VictorStuff.

 If your read my About Me post on Owl-ways Be Inspired, you know that I am obsessed with blankets. This is one of my favorite gift ideas from Jac o' lyn Murphy!

One of life's little mysteries is solved - how to fold a fitted sheet from BHG

If you liked my pins, you can follow me on Pinterest by clicking here

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