Sunday, July 6, 2014


I am running out of time to get things done. When did it become July?!? Seriously, I have so many ideas in my head, and not enough hours to do them. What have I completed?
  • I have finished The Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller. It reminded me why I love reading and why I love telling students about books. I got so many wonderful ideas from this lady. I definitely recommend the read!
  • I have read Smitten by Coleen Coble, Diann Hunt, Kristin Billerbeck, and Denise Hunter. I am participating in my church's summer reading challenge and this book jumped out at me. It had a pretty cover, and, well, I like pretty covers. The book wasn't the best I've ever read, but it was light, and fun, and I finished it in record time. 
  • I have cleaned out my closet AND all the other closets belonging to people of this household. It was tedious, but I did it. Sigh of relief that that is over.
  • I organized my bathroom cabinets. Boring. 
  • I have washed enough clothes to sink a ship. I hate washing clothes, but do you know what's worse? FOLDING THEM. I know, I should just hang everything up, but as referenced above, we don't have the closet space for t-shirts, so those go in drawers.
  • I took a mini-vacation with the family to Chattanooga. It was awesome. I cannot wait to get back!
  • I have played, and played, and played with my kids. We have been to our local splash pad, restaurants, the zoo, church, and just about everywhere else in this town. We have read all the books on our bookshelves more than once, and I have taken more than enough pictures. More than anything else I accomplished, this was the best thing I did with my summer! Babies get big quick!
As much as I enjoyed most of the activities listed above, one thing I haven't done much of this summer is organize my classroom. Floors needed to be waxed and furniture arranged before I could move in, so I've done what I could around my house first. Tomorrow begins my complete classroom makeover phase. I'm excited, but I'm also daunted. Blank slates can be a bit intimidating.

Along with making over my classroom, I'm also working on some ideas I got from TBW and Pinterest. I am currently participating in the BlogHoppin2014 challenge, and this whole concept made me wonder why I had never thought about a photo scavenger hunt for my kids. First, I set up a classroom Instagram account (#mrsriversroom). Next, I thought about how I could encourage my students to just get their hands on books. In keeping with the scavenger hunt idea, I came up with this challenge:

The number one priority of this challenge is to have my students looking for books that might normally be outside of their typical reading zone. The second priority is to have them get their hands on books. I know I have a few people asking, "What does that even mean?" I simply want my students to touch books. I figure if they sort through enough, they'll eventually find one that might interest them. 

The rules of this challenge are simple:

  1. Follow #mrsriversroom on Instagram for monthly challenges. (2-3 per month)
  2. Take a picture of you completing the challenge, caption it, then add the hashtags #mrsriversroom and #weread1415.
  3. Completing each challenge earns bonus points and homework passes. 

SOOOOO easy! 

I hope you and your classroom will participate too! Obviously, only the teacher needs to follow my account in order to see the challenges and their deadlines. If you haven't created a classroom Instagram, go ahead and do so. Have your students use your classroom hashtag instead of mine, but keep #weread1415. How cool would it be to show your students that kids across this great nation are all reading?!? 

I will post more about this challenge in the next week or so. Would anyone want to start off with just a small challenge for the teachers? 

Hope your Sunday was wonderful, and here's to a great week!

P.S. If you want to follow my classroom Wordpress blog, click here.

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