7 Self Care Tips for Teachers


Picture of shell on beach

Hey all you cool cats and kittens! No? Oh wait, this is not a Tiger King blog! I mean hi, teachers! Sorry, I think I've been stuck at home too long. Going on 10 weeks here! Even though many of us have been home, things are still pretty stressful, so I wanted to share some self-care ideas for teachers!

Physical Activities


Squish Stuff!

Get yourself a stress ball!  Or just pop some bubble wrap.  You probably have some free stress balls somewhere but I love the positive messages on these.
   

Move your Body

Do something physical  that you enjoy -whether it;'s just talking a walk, toga, or an online workout. Build yourself an obstacle course in the yard and run it, then try and beat your time!

Mental Self Care

Take a Break

Make sure you take time off on the weekend! You do not have to check online submissions on Saturday or reply to parent emails. And in my opinion, I really really advise you not to schedule Zoom meetings with colleagues on weekends!

Try something you find fun but haven't done in a while: puzzles, crossword puzzles, and art (paint by numbers are HOT right now!) These are a few of my favorites. For a beginner/medium paint by numbers user, isn't the giraffe cool? And yes that's a puzzle, not a pile of candy to eat. But if that is your self-care, go for it!
                

Self-Talk

Positive self talk. We teach our children and students this, but do we honor ourselves with positive self talk? Even if you have to do one day at a time self-talk, such as "Today will be good" or "I will make through today!"


Games

Play a game - board game, online game, or video game. If you follow me , you know I find the Sims 4 to be great stress relief! Pick your favorite, and if it's something you can do as a family, like Animal Crossing, why not?

Bonus

Not so much self care, but good practice! If you get a stressful email, wait at least an hour (or longer to reply). Give yourself time to process stressors and formulate a calm, professional reply.

Shell on beach


How to Share a Video with Students in Google Drive


Hey busy teacher! Have you been navigating your way through the challenging world of distance learning and teaching online? One question that keeps coming up with my fellow teachers is how to share videos with students in Google Drive with students? I have a hopefully helpful video for you in which I  walk you through your options!

Let me know if you have any other tips on how to share videos with students in Google Drive!

How to Assign a Digital Learning Activity in Google Classroom



Are you trying to teach via remote learning or digital learning and need some Google Classroom tips? I have some help for you here if you need to assign a digital resource in Google Classroom.

Note : You need to already have a Google Classroom set up in order to assign a resource to students.

Here is what my Google Classroom looks like. I am going to click on the Redhead Class to show you what to do.

Assigning with a Google Drive Link

Let's say I want to share this digital  telling time resource with students. I am going to click on it to show you how to grab the sharing link.
If I click on the share icon, on the top right, I can then copy the link and share it in classroom. That is one option. So let's put a pin in that for a minute and go to Classroom to see how to post an assignment.
In Google Classroom, I will click + Create and this menu will pop up. I am going to create a Assignment, the first option.
When you click "Assignment" a menu like this comes up. I called it "Telling Time" and just typed a quick sentence in "Instructions". Where the paper clip / "Add" is you can click it, and paste the link if you want. 

Here's what it looks like when you add a link.
On the right, you can also change the assignment to "ungraded" or change the point value. Note: You can also differentiate by clicking on "All students" and  a list of students will pop up. You can assign it to just a few students, or as many as you want.

With "Assignment" creation, note you can change or remove the due date (second picture below).
Now when you add a link, it will look like it does in the image below. Read on to see how, instead of pasting a link, you can grab the resource right from Google Drive!


Assigning with a Direct Link into the Drive File

You can also,  instead of clicking "Add" and "Link", click "Google Drive" to grab the resource right from your Drive.






A menu like this will pop up. I type "telling time" in the search box and find the resource I want, click add, and it is attached in Classroom.

And here is an example of what it will look like in the students' Google Classroom Classwork stream! 

If you need any help with remote learning, digital learning,  and Google Classroom tips please message me and I will do my best to help! And if I missed any important tips or tricks, let me know and I will add them!
 Hang in there! 

Boxed Set Books for Children



Girl Holding Books and smiling with title
I'm here today with some recommendations for the 10 best boxed book sets! During this crazy times, kids and parents alike are at home, trying to keep busy (not get bored out of their minds) ! Of course, you know my favorite thing is reading. I figured now might be a great time to look into investing in a boxed set of your child's favorite books! I looked at Amazon and found some great options!  Clicking on any image will bring you to a description.

Longer Books for Older Readers


"New" Books

Dog Man, yes! He doesn't seem to be going anywhere so might as well dig in with the "epic collection"!

Ivy and Bean seem to have been slowly gaining fans over the past few years and kids were always looking to borrow them from my classroom library.
Everyone seems to be into these books! Even my little first graders want to know if I have any Diary of a Wimpy Kid books in my room!

I know, I know, Magic Treehouse has been around for a couple decades, but it is still new compared to some books below. So if you haven't tried this series with your children, now might be the perfect time!

"Classic" Books

Harry Potter probably is borderline "classic" at this point, right? Maybe a great family read aloud or for your more advanced readers.

I know, it's crazy I put the Choose Your Own Adventure books in the "Classic" section, but they were such a fun part of my childhood that when I saw them, I almost squealed with excitement! Get your child building their own story with the starter box set!


Which Roald Dahl is your favorite? I was always particular to Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator (yes, an unusual pick) as a kid, but as a teacher I love reading aloud James and the Giant Peach!

I also have an E.B. White favorite - Trumpet of the Swan! I never read Stuart Little as a kid - major oversight... but now I love all 3!

Books for Younger Readers



Mo Williams has become one of my personal heroes lately, leading the daily doodle with Mo sessions on Youtube since folks in Massachusetts (and much of the country) went into self isolation! This set is chock full of 25 Elephant and Piggie books and includes bookends! How cute!
Yes, you can't go wrong without a few books from this Dr. Seuss collection! If you don't have them at your at home or classroom library, this is a good deal!
So what is something I missed? What is your recommendation for the best boxed book sets? Be sure to comment and let us know!
girl holding books and smiling with title


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Stuck at Home Activities for the Family



Let's talk about the fact that we all need some ideas and help of things to do while we are self-isolating! That's why I put together this post today of  fun, engaging, stuck at home activities for the family (besides reading and using devices, of course!) Click on any of the images to learn more at Amazon.com!

STEM ACTIVITIES

 ENGINEERING

Yes, I included two types of marble runs because they are so fun! Creative and hours of entertainment and engagement!

SCIENCE

This Insect Lore Butterfly Kit includes LIVE CATERPILLARS! What a great way to learn about the life cycle at home this spring! ❤️️

        





I also think these ideas of having your own fossil dig at home and learning about circuits with Snap Circuits could be great learning experiences for the whole family!


TECHNOLOGY

I didn't want to include any real technology on this list but the Bee Bot is an exception! Family members can learn coding, strategy, problem solving, and more with it! 

CRAFTS

          
Play Doh was one of my favorite things as a child and this kit including stencils, tools and dough would be great for creative free play! With a bead set, crafting can link to spelling and phonics with the ABC beads.
 
Lego could count as a craft , right? I wasn't sure where to put it! But this BrickHeadz activity is a fun way to celebrate Easter since no one is going to any Easter Egg Hunts or parties! Lego City has lots of fun building kits that the whole family could work on!
I first became interested in mosaic art a few years ago. This may be a fun way to introduce it to the whole family!

"BOARD" GAMES

             

I know, most of these are not board games, but they are all super fun games the whole family could possibly play together! You can also get an Apples to Apples Jr. (which I had for indoor recess)  and I think there was a Hedbanz Jr. too! 
 
What do you think of these ideas for engaging and fun, creative, and interactive stuck at home activities for the family? If you have one to suggest, please comment! Hang in there folks and let's have some fun while we wait this out!