Hello all! I am SO excited to be hanging out with Amanda today. She is adorable. And I can't wait to meet some new blogging friends!
A Little About Me
My name is Hannah Burns and I blog over at Cute in the Classroom. I am a second year teacher from South Arkansas. I am married to Josh (known as "Husband" on my blog). We don't have kids, but we do have one dog "baby" named Lewis.
I started blogging about a year ago after discovering the teacher heaven that is TPT. I was actually TPT-ing when I was student teaching! From there I found some AMAZING sellers and even better teacher bloggers. After lots and lots of blog stalking, I just had to join. I don't like to miss out on the fun! And that's what we bloggers do best :)
I like sharing about what I make for my class, getting ideas from other teachers, and joining linky parties. When teaching gets hard (because it does), I love getting on the computer and being inspired by my blogging friends and favorite reads.
I come from a family of teachers (Mom teaches Kindergarten, Dad teaches History, sister teaches PreK), but I'm the only one that blogs. Trust me, any family get-together is full of lots of "shop-talk" and swapping ideas. I love it.
When I'm not teaching, I LOVE to read. Since it's summer right now, I am going through books like crazy. I especially love futuristic/dystopian books like Divergent, Matched, Hunger Games, and many, many more. If you stop by my blog, be prepared to hear about what I'm currently reading and loving. I also love crafting, Pinteresting (follow me!), and sleeping ;)
What I Teach
I am a fourth grade literacy teacher. I have a homeroom class and a switch class. I teach Spelling, Reading, Writing, and Language. My partner teacher does Math, Science, and Social Studies. How do I feel about only teaching Literacy all day? I LOVE IT. Any time someone asks me about teaching a different grade, I tell them that I will think long and hard before I move because I love NOT teaching Math and Science. I know, I know. I'm sorry Math people. I'm married to one of you, so I understand. But I just don't like Math. Or teaching it. I am a Literacy-Lover at heart. Always have been. Aaaaaand I am going into my second year of teaching. Woohoo!
I already told you that I love Literacy, so it's no surprise to you that my favorite subject to teach is Reading. I love discussions, hands-on projects, and group work. If you popped into my classroom on a "normal" (what is that?!) day, here are some things you might see...
Books. Everywhere. My classroom library is out of control. And after reading "The Book Whisperer" by Donalyn Miller last summer, my kids are always reading. Always.
Music. At least half of my Pandora stations are for my kids. We love Kidz Bop, Kidz Bop Holiday, and Relaxation.
Literacy Centers. Once you get to upper elementary (my school is fourth through sixth), you don't see these a lot. But my kids LOVE them. Beg for them. Work harder so they can go to them. A lot of times it looks like chaos. And it might be. But we like it.
Color. I can't stand the off-white cinder block walls of my room, so I cover them up. If you go to the "My Classroom" page on my blog, you'll see what I mean. I use butcher paper as wallpaper, decorate my ceiling with tissue paper pom-poms, and plaster my kids' artwork, anchor charts, and creations everywhere. I think I change the bulletin board outside my room more than anyone in my hallway!
We all have them. The "what am I doing being a teacher I'm exhausted" kind of days. And being a recovering first year teacher, I had a lot of them. Haha. What gets me through? My husband. He is the reason I didn't give up this year, even when I wanted to. His words became my mantra. When I felt like a failure, he told me "Just do your best. That's all you can do." And that's what I live by! Also maybe some "teacher koolaid" as my mom likes to call it ;)
Can't Live Without It
The teaching resource I can't live without....how do I choose? Pinterest and maybe the internet in general are invaluable. What did teachers do before they could just "google" and "pin" lesson ideas? Because I do that all the time. Also paper. We use a lot of that. And laminating. And TPT. And Diet Coke.
Favorite Classroom Activity/Project
Again...how do I choose?! I think one of my favorite things to do in the classroom is have my students "create" something... a flyer, a poster, a video. I love seeing their ideas and artwork. By the end of the year, they know I am really serious about these projects and they get so into them. And we always have share time. I love seeing what they come up with, making them learn how to work together (nine and ten year olds need encouragement...if you know what I mean), and the community that we build by sharing our work with one another. I get teary-eyed just thinking about what some of my fourthies accomplished last year!
I think my blogging goal for the year is just to...blog. Last year, since it was my first year, I kind of went AWOL when school started. I think I was so focused on surviving that I had no time for much else. Now that I know more of what to expect (from myself and the kids), I feel much more confident about my blogging consistency this year. I want to follow more people, meet new friends, and maybe even meet up with someone close by!
Amanda, thank you so much for letting me drop by! And thank YOU for reading. Come see me over at Cute in the Classroom some time :)