Friday, July 31, 2015

What's in Your Cart Linky Party

Once again, the fabulous Jenna (Speech Room News) is hosting the What's in your  Cart Linky Party so we can all get ready for the site-wide TpT sale happening the 3rd & 4th of August. That's Monday & Tuesday, just in case you're getting back to school & need to start paying attention to the date again!
In my cart:
Click on the picture to be taken directly to the product.
Fall Color, Cut, and Glue Articulation Activities: Later D
From Speech is Sweet, this is perfect to go with the Spring Color, Cut, & Glue. I used that one quite a bit for my 5 minute days and homework.

Stellaluna Book Companion for Speech & Language Therapy!
You can never go wrong with a product from Jenn at Crazy Speech World!  This one has been on my wishlist for quite a bit, and with "bat season" coming in a couple of months, this was the perfect time to snag it!  

I was busy at the beginning of the summer making a few products. New this summer at  the Old School Speech TpT Store:
Click on pictures to be taken directly to product.
Back to School 3 Games in 1          Editable Forms for Back to School      Aliens Love Underpants Speech/Language Companion
Team Games                                           Editable Forms                      Book companions

What's in your cart? Don't forget to go over to Speech Room News to see what everyone is planning on purchasing!

Monday, July 27, 2015

The Best Thing I Learned this Summer

I'm linking up with some of the most awesome SLPs I know to talk about the best thing we learned this summer. Some are linking with speech things, some are personal.
Summer is over for me, so I really had to think back over the past couple of months to come up with something.
My first thought was: July is too hot to go camping on vacation in the Outer Banks, but then I thought, "No, I already knew that." 
The best thing I learned this summer was how to use my "big girl camera". My husband gave me a Canon Rebel for my birthday, and then encouraged me to take a class to learn how to use it. I had so many different pieces of advice: Keep the camera on auto until your comfortable or take it off auto. I was pretty confused! I ended up taking a class at a local community college. It lasted for 5 weeks, and the instructor was amazing. Here are a couple  few of my favorite pictures that I snapped this summer:
Inside the Ocracoke Lighthouse
Dill from my Daddy's Garden
Balloon Plant after a rain
Wildflowers in my sister's field
A young squirrel that allowed me to get pretty close to him as he raided the bird feeder
Sunset in the Outer Banks

Want to see what things other SLPs learned this summer? Click here to be taken to SLP Runner's blog. There's a whole list of people who learned something!




Friday, July 24, 2015

My New School Year's Resolution

I'm joining my new friend Kelsey at Simply Magical Learning in her link-up: My New School Year's Resolution. I make "resolutions" from time to time. A couple of years ago, my motto was "Positive and Professional". It just so happened that it was one of my more "challenging" years that I had in a looong time. I made up that motto not knowing what was in store for me! I think I made until Fall Break before it fell apart.
Anyway...
 Lay low: I plan on sitting back and not saying anything during Speech meetings. (BTW, when I told a coworker/friend about that, she laughed.) I'm a little tired of voicing my opinion & sharing things when others don't listen, whisper when I'm talking (or when someone else is, for that matter), and not giving me a simple "thank you" when I share materials. I'm also tired of being only 1 of a very few SLPs who share things. (I just don't understand not sharing.) I'm seriously over it.

Spend less time with TpT: I mentioned in my Slow Down post that this summer I opened up a cabinet and looked at all of my "stuff". I need to look at my materials (most are my own personal materials) and use what I can. If I can't use it, I need to give it away or sell it. My plan is to only buy from TpT when I'm looking for something specific. I also plan on only making things when I need them for therapy.

Enjoy my students: This really isn't tough. I love my kids; heck, I love all of the kids at my schools! The older I get, the more fascinated I am with them and how their little minds work. I love to watch them grow through the year. With the paperwork, data collection,  & meetings, sometimes we tend to lose the enjoyment of getting to know our students. The paperwork, data collection, and meetings will still need to be done, but I intend to enjoy my students this year and not get so wrapped up in the other stuff.

Do you make resolutions? Do you stick with them? Join Kelsey  (She's a pretty awesome 1st Grade Teacher!) and link up with your new school year resolutions.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Starting off on the Right Foot


I know exactly what it's like to start the new school year in a new school. Throughout the course of my career, I have been in 14 elementary schools in 6 school systems in 3 states...so far.  It can be a time of high anxiety, for sure! Hopefully these little tidbits will help you be socially successful in your new assignment.

 Don't go in acting like you know everything. That is definitely a turn-off. Even if you have something to say, sometimes it's better to just sit back and listen. You'll get your turn later...after people know you.

 Your first meeting with the faculty can be a time of anxiety. I have found it's best to go in, find an empty chair, and ask if it's okay for you to sit there. Most of the time it will be okay, but it's very appropriate for you to ask.

 Sit quietly during the faculty meeting. More than likely you will be introduced and asked to say something about yourself. The faculty doesn't want to hear your entire vitae...just where you graduated and a little something personal (married? kids?)  is all they need/want. This may help you connect with a member, and they may approach you with a question or to let you know something you have in common.

 Lunch time can be lonely. It took 5 years at my mountain school before someone invited me to lunch. 5 years, y'all! Of course, I'm not there every day & my room is away from everyone else, so I'm sure they just forgot about me or didn't realize I was there. It's okay to ask a group if you can join them for lunch.

 Take a walk through the school and pop in on teachers. If you noticed something in the room, mention it to her/him; it will get the conversation going. Double bonus: you'll begin to get familiar with the building and where your students' rooms are. Make sure you don't overstay your welcome, though.

 Last, but not least: Don't be afraid to ask questions. From procedures to how the copy machine works, no question is a stupid one.

I can't stress this enough: make friends with the office and custodial staffs. I take brownies to one of the head custodians every now and then. I started taking them right after he made sure my heat was fixed, then found out he has no one to bake for him.

Becoming part of the faculty will not only give you sense of belonging, but you will have the respect of your coworkers. That, in turn, will make so many things easier on you. Teachers will be more flexible when you need for them to be, and may even bend over backwards for you!

Do you have any other suggestions for a smooth transition to a new school?

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Time to Slow Down

I've had time to think...really think...about this past year. I got a little jolt of reality a few weeks ago when I went to one of my schools to put some stuff up. I pulled back the curtain from my shelves and looked at all of my materials...most of it accumulated over the past year and a half. And it hit me: What in the world am I doing??? I am hoping to retire in about 10-12 years, and I've got all this stuff that I just recently made. I have a bunch of stuff, y'all!
And not only stuff, but the time that I've put in to everything this year: the blog, facebook, instagram, TpT, pinterest. I've come to the conclusion that this is the way I dealt with the grief over my mother's unexpected death last summer. It's time for me to get it together and get my priorities back in order. It has been absolutely exhausting trying to keep up with some of you young SLPs!
So...I'm pledging...
...to slow down this year. I'll post here from time to time, but mostly when the mood hits me, or when I have something that I feel I need to say that will help some of you.
...to only make things for my therapy room as I need them. I'll put it up on TpT, and if it helps someone else during therapy, that's great.
...to have fun with instagram. Sometimes I get a little stressed out with instagram. I know it's weird, but it happens.
...to periodically check facebook & pinterest. I actually tried to suspend my facebook account at one time, but my FIL kept putting family pictures on it, so I had to get back on.

My school year starts on 27 July with teacher meetings, and the kids come back 03 August. I need to get back to completely focusing on my students and use blogs,FB, IG as resources when I need them.  I'm not so much in to the numbers game: I have no idea how many followers I have on any of my accounts.
If you're reading this: thank you. I hope you'll check back from time to time to see what's going on in my world!
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