October 5, 2012

Five things Friday: New Computers, Anchor Charts, and KT Tape

1. I have to be honest:  I've been putting off blogging because I have had it up to HERE with my computer.  It is sooo slow, and I think I have upgraded and reupgraded the system as many times as I can to prolong its life.  The cherry on top was when I tried to Skype with Older Brother and Adorable Niece last weekend, only to have my video completely not work.  Then, I tried to download Skype on my work laptop, only to have audio not work!  Terrible.  The good news is that I decided to use my tutoring $$ to buy a pretty new laptop!  (And then of course went into cardiac arrest at the fact that I just spent a month's rent and decided to start tracking my spending for October and actually get around to me perpetual new year's resolution of budgeting...)

2. Yesterday was a marathon day of parent conferences.  I had one before school, had kids from 8:40-11:40, then had...wait for it...TWENTY MORE, wrapping up the night at 8pm.  Dear god.  District gives the kids the day off today so we can use it to finish conferences, but we don't have to schedule any for today if we don't want to.  We just have to go in for at least 2 hours (any time) either way.  At my old school, most teachers scheduled all of their conferences for Thursday and used Friday to just get some work done, so that's what I did again this year.  Yes, 21 conferences in one day (plus teaching all morning, woo) is quite the marathon, but it was pretty awesome to sleep in until 8am this morning, head to school in jeans and TOMS, and work in a quiet, dark classroom listening to Iron & Wine.  Afterwards I treated myself to soup and some reading time at Panera--in other news, it's officially chilly and fall!  Soup season!
3. While working at school today, I spent about a half hour prepping chart paper for next week.  I LOVE my easel, chart paper, and Mr. Sketch markers something fierce.  The thing is, in order to not have to spend excessive time with my back to the kids writing on a chart during teaching, I have to spend time "prepping" the paper, aka drawing the bare bones of whatever anchor chart we'll be using so that I can just fill in the necessary parts during my lesson.  Does anyone else spend huge chunks of time doing this??  Even though it takes time, I love my chart paper and Mr. Sketch markers, so it's time I don't mind taking. :)  In other news, I got a new easel!!  Wooo!!  Sad how exciting this is.  Here is is, along with the focus chart we're filling out during our read aloud, Wonder (The best. book. ever.  Full post after we finish it.).
Mr. Sketch = best markers ever.  Perfect for anchor charts...
and coloring new clothespins for my clip chart clips!

4. We are finishing up our first writing project--a fictional narrative.  Here are pictures of some of the anchor charts we made together during mini-lessons:
Strong Titles
My favorite mini-lesson ever: Power of 3
The Run-On Police
5. I have a 8-9 mi run on the schedule for tomorrow.  My IT bands have been in the best state they have been in a year, but I'm still using KT tape to get them through long runs:
The big pain though is that the samll pieces of tape always peel off from around my knees, especially when I get sweaty.  KT tape sticks great, especially KT tape pro, but the problem is just the placement of these small pieces and the fact that they are mostly sticking against another piece of tape, not the skin.  KT tape pro comes in pre-cut strips, and for IT band taping, you're supposed to cut one piece in half to make the two small X pieces.  Buuut the half size ends up not being big enough to stick to enough of the skin!  And the tape is just two darn expensive to use a bigger amount for these pieces--as it is, I have to use 4 strips to tape both of my IT bands, which roughly equals $4...that adds up, yo!
Anyways, after some excessive google searching for another kinesio tape option, I settled on Rocktape H2O.  It sounds ULTRA sticky and even waterproof, plus I can cut strips in whatever size I want.  We'll see if it does the trick!

What are your weekend plans?


  1. Oh man, Rocktape stays put HARDCORE. You'll be fine. :)

  2. Wow! That's a long day. I don't usually have that many parents at P/T interview day. Maybe 15.
    Where do you get that tape?
    What does it do exactly?

    Grade ONEderful
    Ruby Slippers Blog Designs

    1. Hi Barbara! I got the tape on ebay, but you can get it at a sports or running store. As for what it does, well...it does SOMETHING with pulling on your muscles to get the blood flowing to them...but it's one of those, "if it works, don't ask questions!" things to me!!

  3. Can you tell me where you got your easel? I have been looking around for one to use in my classroom. Some of the ones I found were super expensive! Thanks!

    1. I'm pretty sure it was ordered from Lakeshore--it was pretty $$$ though, our team was lucky enough to have our principal order them for all of us. You can get a super cheap one from Ikea for like $20 though!

  4. Your posts always inspire me! Thanks for the writing anchor charts. Will you share in the future how you manage, prepare for and run your parent conferences? I would love your perspective on them. Thanks!


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