July 3, 2013

The Craft of Teaching: An Amazing Blogger

I am so excited to be guest posting here at Tina's blog! I am so honored. :-)

My name is Nichole and I blog at

 The Craft of Teaching

I teach here in Colorful Colorado! I have been teaching for ELEVEN years...which seems like it can't even be true since it feels like just yesterday that I started. I've taught 4th and 5th grades, and even a 4/5 split! Next year, though, I'll be teaching 3rd grade for the first time. I'm nervous for sure, but getting more excited as the summer goes on. You can read more about that {here.}

My most favorite subject to teach is MATH! It wasn't when I first started teaching, but I have learned so much about myself and my students that I love it. I would teach math all day every day if they would let me! Our school uses Investigations and I have loved it since the beginning. No program is perfect for sure, but I like the opportunities that Investigations gives my kids to explore and construct meaning in math. I always tell them that, even if they hate math at the beginning of the year, it will be their favorite subject by the end. I am {almost} always right! My favorite kid quote of all time: "Dear Mrs. F., When I was in 3rd grade I never knew math and I hated it. But now I love it because of you." {SIGH} It still makes my heart flutter...

This is my most recent math endeavor...a two day workshop on Quantitative Reasoning with my awesome colleagues from my Master's program.

On the subject of, well, subjects...we are a Common Core state here in CO. That has meant a lot of new and interesting work in reading, writing and math! I am just starting to really dig in and put Common Core to use across the board. In math, my favorite part of Common Core are the Standards for Mathematical Practice. Our district has done some amazing work with the Standards for Math Practice, including adding a section into our curriculum documents about which units match which standard! Even though I have tried to use these in my classroom before, having some resources from our district has actually made my job a little easier. We have also rewritten our state and district standards to reflect CCSS, so I'm feeling a little less overwhelmed...as long as I am following our district standards, I should be good to go! Not to mention I find tons of great CCSS aligned resources on TPT. I tried to align my one and only product for sale...you can find it {here} if you are interested or click the preview pic below!

And I am super excited to try this gem from Christina at Bunting, Books and Bainbridge!

I am really looking forward to using this adorable product with my 3rd graders!

Since I started blogging - almost a year ago - I have been so amazed at the creative and talented teachers who share their expertise and great ideas with the world! I jumped into blogging hoping to be a part of that sharing and idea-filled community. I am so glad I did! I've "met" so many sweet people that blog (like Tina!), or just read blogs, and truly my teaching has been reinvigorated. If I was ever at a loss for a great lesson or cute craftivity, I knew I could turn to blogs and find something outstanding in just minutes. It's like having teaching teammates all over the world! I still feel like a relative newbie, but I learn new blogging tips and tricks each time I sit down to write a post and I have always felt like this is an incredibly welcoming and helpful blogging world. I don't think all blog groups are like that, so we are pretty lucky! Here are a few of the folks who really inspired and helped me get started:

I Teach. What's Your Super Power?
Megan designed my blog and has great blogging tips! :-)
I stole borrowed so many of Tara's ideas when I first started!

Lisa makes great products and has great posts!

Of course Tina! She finds the most amazing ideas to share!
I think that's about it! I hope you enjoyed my ramblings and I would love to have you all as followers on my blog:

 The Craft of Teaching
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I seriously cannot thank Tina enough for having me here! I loved every minute of it!

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