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Teacher Tips

World Book Day Costume Ideas for Children and Teachers

World Book Day Ideas

If you’re looking for World Book Day costumes for children and adults alike – you’ve come to the right place! While researching this blog post, I was actually quite surprised about how little there is in terms of inspiration on the internet. But to save you trawling round looking for ideas, we’ve done the hard work for you! Children’s World Book Day Costumes First let’s start with the kids. I’ve added a whole heap of  World  Book Day costume ideas to my Pinterest board (feel free to follow us on Pinterest whilst you’re at it!), but for ease, I also thought I’d make a list here. Harry Potter Sherlock Holmes Very Hungry Caterpillar Rainbow Fish Fantastic Mr Fox Snail from Snail and the whale Knight from the King Arthur books Pirate from The Pirates Next Door The Mad Hatter Peter Pan Willy Wonka Oompa Loompa from Charlie and the Chocolate…    read more 

World Book Day Activity Ideas

world book day activities

Are you looking for World Book Day activity ideas, or perhaps World Book Day ideas for KS1 and KS2? We’ve done a round up of our favourite ideas that are easy and do-able for all abilities. World Book Day is a great excuse to get off timetable and really celebrate a love of reading – which I believe is the cornerstone of ALL learning. Encouraging a love of reading really is essential, and as a class teacher I would sit and read my own book whilst my class were reading, to emphasise that reading is a life long pleasure. Here are our favourite activities and ideas not just for World Book Day actually, but for general fun book related learning! Kapow Primary have got a great selection of demo videos and lesson ideas to bring more of a cross curricular approach to World Book Day – I love the story triarama…    read more 

Classroom Must Haves

Classroom must haves

One of the questions we get asked quite frequently both as teachers and resource providers is – what are my classroom must haves? Obviously this differs between age groups, but we thought it might be useful to provide a sort of definitive list of some essentials you need for your classroom, especially useful if you are an NQT or just looking for some new ideas! Some of these resources we have, some we are making in time for the new year, and some are non printables. Either way, hopefully you will find something useful here. Classroom Management Essentials Common exception word mats -laminated and put on each table, especially for years 1 and year 2.  Maths and English working wall display. A visual timetable. Some sort of calendar display – especially for KS1. Conjunctions displayed on the wall (coming soon!). Wipe clean number lines to 100. Bead strings Class set…    read more 

How to Make an Obb and Bob Phonics Sorting Game

Obb and Bob Phonics sorting game

Phonics games are fun! And here’s one that’s super easy to make both for teachers and parents at home with their own children. We’ve put together an Obb and Bob Phonics Sorting Game resource pack for you to try, either for preparation for the Phonics Screening Check or just for consolidation in your phonics sessions.  The pack contains “stickers” that can be cut out and stuck onto a suitable mini bin, as well as word cards to be used during the game. It’s worth noting that these particular words are taken from the previous two years year 1 Phonics Screening Checks. Instructions 1. Purchase two mini bins – you can either choose the same colour or two contrasting colours – it’s up to you! I chose two different colours as I thought they would look better in photos. These two came from B and Q (though perplexingly they are not…    read more 

Phonics Screening Check 2019

Phonics screening check resources

Do you want a fresh approach to the Phonics Screening Check 2019? Need some phonics screening resources that are a bit different to what you used last year? Then you’ve come to the right place! We’ve been working really hard to make phonics screening resources  that give you the information and content you need, and that children love! All hand drawn by us. Here we go! Start with our super cool Phonics Screening Check PowerPoint! Show to your children either in class at home and go through the nonsense words so children are familiar with the concept.   Or how about using some of our Alien Words Flashcards? Useful in small groups or 1:1, or with your own child at home.   It’s also worth practising both handwriting and reading with our Year 1 Common Exception Words Handwriting Activity and Year 2 Common Exception Words Handwriting Activity.   It’s also…    read more 

Alternative Jobs to Teaching

alternative jobs for teachers

Since setting up Mrs Mactivity I’ve had quite a few messages from other teachers asking me about my change in career and asking for ideas for alternative jobs to teaching. Giving up teaching was the most difficult decision I’ve ever had to make. I loved being with children and can honestly say they gave me joy every single day. Yes there were hard days when I was tired or run down or had startings of flu, and I honestly didn’t know how I was going to get through the day. There were kids I think I probably failed, especially in the early days, and I am definitely haunted by the memory of that. But there were plenty of kids that I helped, inspired and championed and hopefully they will remember me in a positive way. Really as an educator that’s the best compliment anyone can pay you. But over time I…    read more 

Easy Snow Day Ideas For Kids

Snow day activity ideas

It’s here – SNOW! Your school or setting might be closed today, or maybe it’s open and you’re looking for snow ideas to do with the children. Or maybe you’re at home with your own children, and running out of ways to keep them entertained. So we’ve rounded up some quick and fun ideas to help take the chill (get it) out of days like this. Snow Day Activity Ideas Build a snow sculpture – something different to your typical snowman. A dog, a cat, a house! Let your children’s imagination run wild. Discuss techniques for impacting the snow, the different types of snow and what works and what doesn’t. Ami Elizabeth says, “create an indoor snow tuff spot for when it’s time to come in and get warm.” Going sledging is obvious – but join in yourself. Have races down the slope, experiment with different angles and various levels…    read more 

How to Improve Staff Well Being

ways to improve teacher well-being

A hugely important, but often overlooked aspect of school life is the well-being of its staff. As adults, are are well used to prioriting the well-being of children – both our own and the children in our care. But with more and more teachers leaving the profession (myself included) looking after the well-being of teachers – and in fact ALL staff in school, has become more and more of a priority. The fact is that if we DON’T look after our teachers, we may find ourselves in a position where there is a massive shortfall, and it’s the children who will suffer ultimately. Huge workloads, increasing expectations, marking, inspections, observations, behaviour, micro management, all of these things add to the stress that teachers are under, and we’ve collated some ideas here to both help people look after their own well-being and also give some tips to schools at an organisational…    read more 

How to Teach Guided Reading

How to teach guided reading

Guided reading! Since I became a teacher back in 2005, it seems to have been the scourge of teachers everywhere. How should we teach it? What works best? Why does it take so LONG to plan? Does it even work? Should it replace reading 1:1? Should we teach guided reading in carousels, or as a whole class? Many many questions! Like most things with teaching, you’ve got to ultimately figure out what works best for you and your class, however there has been quite a lot of talk recently about moving over to whole class reading and perhaps abandoning the idea of carousel activities in guided reading. What are carousel activities for guided reading? For the uninitiated, this is a way of carrying out guided reading with a range of activities to try to help children read and understand the text, or develop their reading skills in some way.  So…    read more 

How Teachers Should Spend Their Summer

How teachers should spend their summer

Although the clue’s in the title here, far be it from me to tell anyone how to spend their summer! Having said that, when you’re exhausted at the end of the term, it can be difficult to think ahead and even think straight! So if you’re after some top tips for how to spend your summer holiday this year, we’ve some ideas for how you can TRULY relax and ensure you’re invigorated ahead of the new term. If you can, if you’ve any energy at all, try and plan a little in advance of the holidays, otherwise you’ll find they’ve arrived and everyone is busy and you’ve no-one to spend time with. If you don’t have kids of your own, and not many teacher friends, the holidays can be a lonely time (actually they can be a lonely time even if you do have all of the above!). You sort…    read more 

My Top Teaching Time Saving Tips

2018-01-15    
Teacher time saving tips

It’s been a few years since I left the teaching world full time, but I’m lucky enough to do the odd day here and there still to keep my hand in, but one of the most important skills – time management – has never left me. I don’t think non teachers (and TAs) know exactly what it’s like to manage your time as a teacher. There are no leisurely hours checking your emails – you have to do that on the fly. It’s difficult to find time to grab a sandwich let alone go out for lunch (can you imagine!). That’s not to say that other professions are easier or better, they are just different. Teaching has NO downtime, not even at the end of term.  So I’ve put together my top teaching time saving tips, but please feel free to comment with yours as well. Don’t reinvent the wheel. There are…    read more