Monday "I Made-It Through Last Week"

Oh I'm just going to jump into the Made Its I worked on this week. I'm not sure how I managed to get any work done this week, but I managed to squeeze a few more school things in. I really need to get back into school to work on stuff, but who knows when I'll have time to do that.

(1) Classroom Journals

I found these little magazine holders at Target and I knew I wanted to try and implement classroom journals this year. I've seen them on Pinterest before, but I wanted to do them a bit differently. We do 4 major units throughout the year... I only had 3 notebooks. So I prepared these 3 and we'll see if I get around to the fourth. 

Each notebook has 5 tabs (1 of which is a catch-all "wild card"). 

On in the inside of the cover are some reminders. I want students to read entries of their classmates before they write their own, so directions for that are here. Then, I spaced out the tabs. Each tab includes ideas on what can be shared about in that section of the journal as well as an "entry checklist" to make sure their writing is ready for others to read. The tabs are essential categories or topics that fit under the larger genre on the cover. It'll provide a bit of support for those that struggle coming up with ideas.

Here's a few examples of what I came up with based on our units of study. 

During the printing process, my printer decided to become difficult. This has happened at least 3 other times. When my printer works, it works great and I love it! But when it does this, I loose it! It's so frustrating. But I went to bed and tried it again the next morning and it must have gotten my message. It worked. 

(2) Graffiti Wall

Shout out to Farley for this project. Only thing- it's not done yet. But once I get into my room again, I'm going to hang it up and then it will be done. I got all the materials at Michaels: 2 wooden stakes (underneath those strips of ribbon if you couldn't tell), roll of easel paper, ribbon, and double sided tape. I have magnetic hooks and rings at school so I'll use those to finish this project then!

(3) Rubric Binder

I'm honing in on my rubrics this year. So I am putting together a binder with rubrics to help me set expectations for myself as a teacher in a variety of learning outcomes. I want to know what I want to expect because quite honestly, sometimes I don't even know what I expect my kiddos to do on a task so I've got to think things through a bit before hand. Thanks to the AWESOME new book by Serravallo titled The Reading Strategies Book, I'm feeling so much more prepared to know what to expect from my students when we analyze characters. 

Do you teach reading at any age in elementary?? Then you NEED this book. For real. It's straight up gold! Go get it and enjoy the beauty of it within.

If you want to know more about how I implement rubrics (and get a little freebie) head over to the iTeach Third blog and check out my post over there- alllllll about rubrics!

And that's it for this week. Now I'm off to do one of my favorite things: look at other Monday Made Its over at Tara's Blog.



  1. Will you be putting your classroom journals and rubrics in your store? Thanks!

    1. I am also interested in your rubrics! Love the idea of displaying them so that students have a clear understanding of what's expected.

    2. Hello! I do think I may add the journals to my store. I'm just not sure when. I've got some others to make still so I am planning on waiting until I have them all done. I will definitely share on my blog and/or Instagram, Facebook, etc. when they are available.

      As for the rubrics, I will not be sharing those. :( I used a lot of information from Serravallo's work to help create mine and I feel like it would be violating her copyright. Otherwise, I would definitely share them! I would suggest if you are interested in them to check out her book- she lays out some information to help you make your own for a variety of reading skills. Totally worth the $40 or so! :)

    3. YEAH....what they all said! I just want everything of yours which basically translates into...I just want to be you. You make everything so colorful and creative and I'm jealous...I'm just jealous. It's a good thing you love me! Hurry up with the graffiti know I have no patience for waiting. I went up to school today and my carpets won't be cleaned until Wednesday. I got yelled at for walking in the wet hallway with my flip flops on. In my defense...I would've just stayed in my classroom if it was ready to work in and wouldn't even ventured into the hallway to go see what everyone else was doing. I can justify anything! xo
      Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

    4. I LOVE everything you create. I'm with Alison. I just want to be you. I heard Serravallo in a session at ILA and just loved her approach to everything ELA. Her book is $41 though. . . that's almost 50. Is it worth it?

      My Bright Blue House

  2. You notebook are awesome! What a great idea for shared writing.

    Kovescence of the Mind

  3. I love your notebooks. I have some classroom journals but I love that these are related to your units! Genius!! I'm reading the Reading Strategies Book, too! Are you participating in the Voxer chat? If not, you should join us. It's great hearing others thoughts about what's important and how they think they'll use it next year with their kiddos. I'm interested in your rubrics, too - I find I need to be more focused on what I really want my kiddos to learn. I'm going to head over to read your post on iTeach Third. (It looks like your printer is grabbing 2 pages at a time and feeding them through kind of separately. When mine does this (so irritating) I've taken the paper out and kind of fanned them out and then put back into the feeder tray - sometimes it helps - not sure if the paper is actually "sticking" together or if it's the roller that picks the paper up from the tray.)
    Thanks for sharing such great ideas!!
    Are We There Yet?

  4. Love the design and organization of these journals and rubrics!

  5. I love your journals and rubrics! They are amazing and I hope you put them in your store. My kiddos would absolutely adore these during writing choice time! Thank you for sharing your lovely creations! :)

  6. I just finished making class journals, saw yours, and I just want to do mine over! Really, yours are AWESOME! :)
    PJ Jots

  7. Me, too! Me, too! Those journals are TOO cute! I can't wait until you're finished, so I can snatch them up!

  8. Your journals are amazing! I love how you included the tabs and reminders! Thank you for sharing all of your creative ideas. Your projects always turn out great!

    Fit to be Fourth

  9. I LOVE your journals! Do you let the students take the journals home? Also, are they required to write a rough draft prior to writing their piece in the journal?

  10. Please put the journals in your
    Store ASAP. We need them. Teachers of America UNITE and go on strike until we can buy the journals!!!!

  11. Love your journals! Got me thinking how to adapt for kindergarten... now something to add to my ever growing to do list! :0)


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