Thursday, March 15, 2018

Quick Rubrics

This is going to be so quick, y'all!!

I have never EVER been one to pretend that I have it "all together" in my classroom. I rarely ever do! It doesn't matter how nice something looks, it matters that it is effective for your students! As long as the guidelines are clear and they know your expectations, you're set! That's where this last-minute rubric comes into play!

I start by explaining to my class what group work we are about to begin. Whether it is a project, presentation, whatever...doesn't matter. Maybe you have a hand out of project guidelines, maybe a PowerPoint...maybe you're just explaining them out loud...again, it does not matter!

Once the kids know what they are going to be working on, they should be able to predict your expectations. This may not work as well earlier in the year, as they don't know you as well yet; however, later in the year, this becomes completely student-led. 

Kids will start to name things they think you will be looking for while they work. Usually teamwork or cooperation, effort, neatness, etc. come up first. Then, there will need to be some things you're looking for that go directly with the task at hand. In the photo above, the kids were doing some work with researching. Since we were really just practicing how to research, they were mainly expected to use both their books and the computer. In other projects, I am usually looking for more standard-based skills (the ones I am assessing). You may have the help them out a little if they don't come up with everything you want them to. I try not to surpass 5 things that I am looking for. It becomes too many after 5. These are the things listed in blue above. 

I write these things on sticky notes (however many groups I have, that's how many stickies I need) and hand them to each group. They write their names on it right away (that is what you see in pencil above).

I then tell them to GET BUSY! Haha! They start working and I go around with some sort of pen that the kids won't also have (so they can't add their own stars) and star off what they are doing WELL when I walk by or listen in to their group. It is important to go to each group an equal amount of times. This holds me accountable to really walking around and monitoring while they work. This also holds them accountable for those traits and skills I am looking for. If they are not doing something they should be, I do not give them a star. I sometimes make little notes, if I have to, for my own memory. 

Once you are done and it's time for the kids to be done (you can use this rubric over a span of a few days, if needed, just make sure you collect them each day so you keep possession of them) then you collect them and you can use them to help you when you actually grade them. You can still use a more formal rubric when grading them, but this will help you with what they actually did while they were working and not just allow you to grade their final project only. 
Sometimes, it is about the process...not just the product!

Wedding Shower by Oriental Trading

I am super duper late getting this post to you all, but I feel like I should just blame it on my 11 month old ;) haha! No, she is actually the easiest baby EVER and I am so lucky! I just definitely choose to spend my time with her, and put work second...which is great....but sometimes you gotta work!

Also..sometimes you gotta party!
And that is just what we did for my sister, Caitlin, when we showered her for her wedding in the Fall. This party was a combination of decor/supplies from Oriental Trading and decor I created on my own. 

The "Mrs. Berk" sign was just created on my computer, however, everything else you see in this picture was from Oriental Trading!  

The tablecloth, palm leaves, garlands, little donut hole tooth picks, and plates/napkins are all Oriental Trading products! Of course, the letter board was something we already had....doesn't everyone? Haha! If you look closely, you will see the pink tablecloth has a black/white cloth over it on the you see it? THAT tablecloth has lasted us through SO MANY PARTIES! My sister has had that roll of black/white cloth foreverrrrrr and it literally has decorated at least 7 parties by now! We used it for my baby shower, her wedding shower, and her super bowl name a few...and she still has more left on the roll! That stuff is highly highly highly recommended! 

When you first walk in I had a Jenga table set up. No, not for playing! This is where guests and family wrote little messages for the happy couple on Jenga blocks! They get to keep this as a married couple, and when they play the game as a family they can see everyone's sweet messages! 
(There's that black and white tablecloth again!) I made the little instructions card on my computer. 

Our little photo booth set up worked out so well! It helps that the wall in her home is BEAUTIFUL! Balloons are also from Oriental Trading!

We had the gifts set up with balloons around the TV stand. did not stay on throughout the party...haha! We changed it to a music channel. 

The garland below is actually made from bed sheets I got from Wal-Mart! I cut them into strips and knotted them around the string! I actually really REALLY love how this came out. In the future, I would have steamed this out before hanging it... 

Of course, every good party has great food! 
It was sort of like a late breakfast, almost lunch time of it was really just food to pick at while you talked with friends and family. 

I love how the palm leaves look scattered throughout all of the different tables at the party. You have to look closely, because I did not get a great photo, but there are sweet little votive candles all over. The battery operated votive candles AND little gold glasses they are in are from Oriental Trading. I think these are my best pick because I can use them for everything! 

Cutest, sweetest, most adorable toothpicks for eating donut holes EVER!

I created the water bottle labels on my computer.
I printed them on 8.5x11 sticky label paper (made for mailing labels), cut them, and wrapped them around to stick. It really only sticks well if the water is not cold first. 

These "thanks" bags for take-away presents were adorable. I filled two different ziplocks with candy (his favorite and her favorite candies) and put them in the "thanks" bags. People loved the personal touch of the candy being the favorites of the couple!


Thanks everyone! I definitely only go to Oriental Trading for my party shopping. I have learned my lesson one too many times at the Party store in town. SO EXPENSIVE and the quality is not great. Oriental Trading always gives you a great amount of product for the price and the quality is awesome. I have never had a problem...that's the truth! The colors of things on their site always look right when they come in the mail...that is another concern when throwing a party. They also have a lot of themed stuff, but it also goes well as color schemes, too! I just love them!