Christmas is coming, hooray! Since this season is a time of sharing, I thought it would be fun to share a few of my favorite things for the classroom. In fact, I think it would be extra fun to give one away every day for five days starting December 15!
If you’ve ever seen one of Oprah’s Favorite Things giveaways, maybe you’ve fantasized about what would make your list, I know I have! Now don’t get too excited, I don’t have corporate sponsorship! These are teacher-affordable gifts for the classroom we’re talking about here, but I think there’s still a lot to love and get excited about — even if that means you do NOT get a car, and you do NOT get a car, and you do NOT get a car! 😉
If you want a chance to win one of the items on the list, there are two things you need to do to enter:
1) Make sure you are subscribed to the newsletter. You’ll find a super-quick form for that at the top right of this page (join the newsletter).
2) Head over to this Facebook post and like it, share it, and/or leave a comment.
Simple, right? Starting December 15, I will select a winner each day for five consecutive days. I’ll announce winners through the newsletter each day, so make sure you open up those emails to see if you’ve won! I’ll also recap the winners on my FB Live December 20th at 5:00 p.m. PST.
Since I don’t want to send you something you don’t like, I’ll let winners choose the item they’d most like from my favorite things list below unless the winner doesn’t have a U.S. shipping address. In that case, the winner(s) will receive a TpT gift card.
Full disclosure, I am an Amazon associate which means I can receive small referral payments for items I recommend if they’re purchased through my referral links, but I only include links to products I love!
I’ll start with two games I LOVE to use as part of math center rotations.
Another great, quick game is Blink! Again, this is versatile with the age-range. It’s simple for young students to learn, but speed is the name of the game, so it’s interesting and fun for all ages. Seriously, I LOVE this game. You can play with two or three players, and the rounds are up quickly, so it’s a great option for early finishers. Several students would request to play with me before lunch or during recess, so you can even use it as a reward or a way to build rapport! (If a winner selects Blink, I’ll send three decks.)
I used these writing prompts with my 7th graders and they LOVED them. Like, really loved them! They would ask at the start of class constantly if we could do an unjournaling prompt. You read that right: 7th graders were begging for writing prompts. I probably don’t need to say more! I could easily see using this book with 5th grade and up.
Have you heard about Article of the Week? The author of this book is behind that work, and reading this and some of his other books made me a better ELA teacher. And, honestly, I am so happy to support him by buying his books solely because the AOW site saved me sooooooo much time! But there is no charity in this; his books are worth every penny! 🙂
STEM Challenge Materials
We’ve probably all tried knock-off brands of dry erase markers at our own peril. Frankly, Expo are just the best, in my opinion. Bonus: this set of 24 is about as cheap as I’ve ever seen them … and inexpensive is another one of my favorite things!
Reading for You
Rafe Esquith is just inspiring. Although I do think the level of commitment he has made is an unfair expectation of any teacher, it’s always refreshing to read about passionate educators and the difference they are making in students’ lives! Teach Like Your Hair’s on Fire and There Are No Shortcuts will get you reflecting on your own practice and inspire you!
For the Class Library
For any gentlemen reading this post, I hope you’ll understand my need to focus on the ladies here. When we take a look at the books on scientists, inventors, and great discoveries, they are often heavily-weighted toward the male of our species. Add Women in Science and Girls Think of Everything to your libraries to even it out a bit and encourage every girl in your class to see her potential as limitless in any field.
This one is a bargain, so if a winner chooses this I’ll send both of these class library books together.
To Save You Time!
Teachers Pay Teachers is perhaps the single greatest thing to happen to teachers and teachers’ families! TpT has so much time-saving goodness and so many high-quality lessons made for teachers by teachers. You can use the $25 gift card on anything you like, but might I recommend some STEM Challenges? 😉
What are your classroom favorites?? Let me know in the comments!