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Teaching Students to Take a Break

Teaching students to take a break is a great skill in helping students learn to cope with emotions.  Giving students the opportunity to request and grant a break is a skill that can really "make or break" a students ability to be successful in the classroom. Breaks can look different in different settings. They can also vary depending on the student.  

Toilet Training in the Classroom

As a special education teacher, we often times are faced with things such as toilet training, potty training or bathroom training, which ever you choose to call it!  Either way, it can be a daunting task but the rewards can be life changing for the student and their family.

How To Conquer Work Centers

Work centers can be such a hit or miss for teachers.  So many times I hear these horrific stories about how chaos set out the second work centers begin.  Well, let's get to the route of the problem? 

Do students know where to go during work centers?
Do student's know what's expected of them during work centers?
Are your work centers organized?
Is student work/tasks ready when they arrive to the work centers?
Is your work center routine consistent?

Sight Word Work Center Organization

I get a lot of questions about how I organize my sight word products materials in my classroom.  I wanted to show you how you can easily set up a work center rotation center within your classroom.  By setting it up in a functional way, you will easily be able to differentiate in your quick rotation centers.

How To Set Up A Calm Down Kit In Your Classroom

I get a lot of questions about how to set up a calm down kit.  
Short answer... there is no wrong way!  
Long answer.... read on :)

any links to amazon in this blog post are affiliate links

How To Host a Valentine's Day Party!

Valentine's Day can be such a FUN holiday in the classroom.  You can turn a fun holiday celebration into something meaningful for your students.  You can incorporate communication, social skills and academics in a  FUN way!  I wanted to share with you some ideas for YOUR holiday celebration.  To read more about my February Plans click here.

What's Up February!

I wanted to take the time to do a LARGE post to share some of my favorite activities for the month of February.  I have accumulated so many fun ideas and crafts over the years.  I typically share "as I go" my plans, but since I am not in the classroom and at home with my little stud, I wanted to make a conscious effort to start sharing ahead of time to give you time to prep some of these ideas for YOUR classroom!  So, here goes! Oh- and let me know if you'd be interested in me sharing my ideas for the rest of the months ahead of time as well.

First things first, I wanted to share with you my February vocabulary unit.  I use this to "fill in the gaps" at center and throughout the day.  I like to display the vocabulary words at my language arts center and utilize in journals, spelling, comprehension activities etc.


Other activities I like to store at my language arts center includes the Wh- question packs from You-AUT-a Know.  These are fun bingo dauber activities that students can compete to practice comprehension!

I also love these two activities from My Special Learners.  She has fabulous seasonal File Folder Activities that I like to use at each center.  I store these for early finishers.  Students love them and think they are "fun" yet it keeps them engaged.  I also use her Count It Out Books that my kiddos love for extra counting practice at the math center!


Another activity I keep at my language arts center is my February directed drawing activities.  These are used as filler activities at my writing center when a student finishes their journal.  These directed drawing activities are leveled so that all of my students can work on the same drawing at their own level.  My students are always proud to put these on display!

We also like to do a lot of art in my classroom.  I love using art to work on so many other skills such as communication, language arts, math and social skills. I mean, you can stretch it as much as practicing sharing supplies!  My go-to girl for planning for art projects for the month is Erin from You AUT-a Know.  She has two years worth of plans for free on her blog.  Head to her 2015 and 2016 blog post to find CLICKABLE links to each product.  This can be a great way to have parent volunteers or aides prep projects for you by following these links for easy to read instructions.  Here are her two calendars below.  Click on each image to be directed to clickable links!

Here are some of my favorite crafts not included on these calendars from over the years!

Sponge painting hearts:

Heart flowers and bear crafts!

I also AWAYS decorate our door each month.  Its the first thing students see in the morning, and I love to start the day with a cheer :)

I love to use adapted books at my reading center.  I use my peek-a-boo where is cupid adapted book a long with some of my other favorites from Speech Room News and Mrs. Ps Specialties.  I like to store my February Social Stories here as well.  Interested in making your own adapted book wall?  Check out my tutorial HERE.



I also love to put a huge emphasis on KINDNESS in the month of February.  I believe kindness should be taught year round, however its good to re-visit in February.  Here are a bunch of kindness activities you can find in your classroom.  Click on each image to be taken to the activity.  (MOST ARE FREE!)




 I talk about my monthly binders all the time.  But seriously.  THEY ARE A LIFE SAVER.  I know they take a while to prep, but after 3 years of using them in my classroom, it is safe to say that the prep work is SO WORTH IT!  Here is a more detailed look at my FEBRUARY BINDER TASKS.



Looking to organize homework for the month?  I like to use life skills homework for students to complete wit their families.  Also pair it with a family project!

I also love these Take Home Games for February from You-AUT-a Know.  I like that these can be sent home for homework or kept in the classroom for fun work centers.  It could be perfect for a Valentines day party!

Home made "valentine bags" for collecting and passing out Valentine's from friends.