Happy Shark Week!  To celebrate, I am partnering up with a great team of bloggers to bring you some FIN-tastic freebies that your students are sure to love!
Choosing partners can be a daunting task for teachers and students alike. These shark cards are a fun, random way to help with assigning partners in the classroom!
My JAW-some freebie consists of a set of Pick-A-Partner cards to use at any time of the school year.  All you need to do is pass a card out to each student and they search for their match!  It is a great way for you to randomly assign partnerships in your classroom.

You could also "strategically" pass out the cards.  This makes it appear to students that the partnerships are random, even though you have decided who is going to get which card.  We teachers can be tricky!  

I also included some additional sea creatures to ensure that you have enough cards for your entire class.  To download my freebie, click here or on the picture below.
Choosing partners can be a daunting task for teachers and students alike. These shark cards are a fun, random way to help with assigning partners in the classroom!
Now be sure to swim on over to Just Reed and pick up another fun freebie!


Every blog in the Shark Week Blog Hop features a FIN-tastic freebie for you and your students - but hurry!  Shark Week only lasts until Sunday, July 3rd.

As a child, my friends and I would talk about the books that we were reading while we ate our PB&J at the lunch table and on the bumpy bus rides home.  Something tells me I wasn't your typical kid though.  So, how do we get our students to discuss books?  To share their favorites?  To reveal why they abandoned a book?
A teacher's summer might not be what you think it is!  Five ways they prepare and organize for back to school in the fall.  I think #1 is my favorite!
What does a teacher's summer look like?  Many use this time to become better teachers!  Crazy, right?  Here are some of my plans for these warm months.

1. Read!
Kids Books
Summer is a great time for me to get a jump start on chapter books that my 5th graders might be interested in during the year.  I pick up brand new releases so that I can recommend fresh books to my readers.  Our state also chooses 20 books to celebrate throughout the school-year, with games for the students to play during Reading Week, if they have read them.  I make sure that I read these as well, since they are always a big hit in my class!
A teacher's summer might not be what you think it is!  Five ways they prepare and organize for back to school in the fall.  I think #1 is my favorite!

Professional Books
I'll be honest, when I was in college and professional books were "required reading," I may not have read them as thoroughly as I should have. Or at all. Now that I have the freedom to choose, I love getting my hands on a good research-based book.  I look to my colleagues for recommendation, as well as other teachers who I follow on IG, Facebook or blogs. Not only do I pick up new ones each year, but I re-read ones that have made an impact on my teaching. I find it to be rejuvenating and motivating to learn about best practices from other educators.  And it makes me motivated to get back into the classroom!
A teacher's summer might not be what you think it is!  Five ways they prepare and organize for back to school in the fall.  I think #1 is my favorite!

2. Plan for next year
This one is a biggie. A majority of this planning is done on my own, but I also meet up with my grade-level colleagues to discuss the upcoming year. I reflect on what went well the previous year and what didn't quite go as planned. 

I set up my calendar for the year.  Doesn't the blank calendar look all pretty?  It will fill up fast!
Click here to grab The Calendar Notebook
 I create a year-long calendar based on our curriculum's scope and sequence.  This gets hung up behind my desk to help keep me on track.
A teacher's summer might not be what you think it is!  Five ways they prepare and organize for back to school in the fall.  I think #1 is my favorite!

3. Prepare the classroom
This is the fun part!  As tiring as it is to set up and take down my classroom every year, I look forward to a clean slate in August.  Some years I keep it exactly the same, others it is completely different.  I enjoy creating decor for the room and deciding how everything is going to be organized to make teaching and learning easy for myself and my students.
4. Shop!
It's no secret that teachers love school supplies!  I actually prefer to shop for Crayola products than clothes (true story).  Most teachers provide a majority of the school supplies for their classrooms.  We scour the Target Dollar Section and the Staples ads all summer to score good sales on everything from notebooks to glue sticks.
A teacher's summer might not be what you think it is!  Five ways they prepare and organize for back to school in the fall.  I think #1 is my favorite!

5. Spend time with family
And the most important thing I do over the summer...is spend quality time with my own family.  Sometimes they get a tad neglected during the school year as I am writing lesson plans and grading papers.  I come from a family of teachers, so we do a LOT of catching up over the summer!  The best place to do so is by the beach, of course!
A teacher's summer might not be what you think it is!  Five ways they prepare and organize for back to school in the fall.  I think #1 is my favorite!

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