Blog Launch & Monday Made It...



Thank you so much for visiting my blog!  I am so excited to begin this blogging journey and have so many ideas that I cannot wait to share with you!  I'd like to share a little about myself and how I started this new venture...

My name is Jen Regan and I'm from West Seneca, NY; a suburb of Buffalo.  I teach in Attica, NY which is a rural town about 40 minutes away from where I live.  This year will be my eleventh year teaching fourth grade!!  I can't even believe it...how can it possibly be that I have been teaching for eleven years??  Students that were in my first classes are now college students!  Sometimes I can't even wrap my head around how fast it has gone by!  I love teaching fourth grade and I love all of the challenges that come with the rigor of the curriculum at this grade level.  I have high expectations of my students and we work hard to have fun while accomplishing our goals.  My hope is that students leave my classroom as lifelong learners, thinking outside of the box.

For years, I have been a Teachers Pay Teachers addict!  I love finding new ideas and teaching concepts in new ways.  Being able to type in a skill or concept and have lessons, posters, passages, etc. at my fingertips is fascinating to me!  Teachers know what works best in their classrooms and we trust each other when sharing ideas and Teacher Pay Teachers is the perfect way for teachers to collaborate.  I have always wondered how teachers have found the time to create such amazing products and wanted so badly to be able to turn my own ideas into works of teacher art...and then I started to do some research.  I read blogs, watched You Tube videos, searched Pinterest and decided that maybe I could do this too...with a small investment in some fonts, clip art, and backgrounds, I could take my old Comic Sans worksheets and turn them into something amazing.  And that is just what I started to do.  I slowly started to take some of my favorite things that I do with my own students from looking old and tired to looking new again and started making them better.  It became an addiction!  I had a tough time last school year adjusting to being a working mom of two after taking an extended maternity leave.  I felt my passion for teaching beginning to fade, and it was truly affecting me in my professional and personal life.  Creating for Teachers Pay Teachers has relit my fire for teaching, has motivated me in ways I couldn't have imagined and has brought back my passion that I felt slowly fading.  It has truly made me a better teacher in many ways!  As I was creating products, I started to find other teachers that do the same through Facebook and Instagram and immediately I felt welcomed into this tightknit, supportive, and amazing community of teachers that is nothing but helpful and supportive of each other; each one of them is truly amazing at what they do.  And from there, my addiction grew...I not only want my store to be successful, but now I truly want to use these outlets and resources that I have found in my new social media "friends" to help me and my students grow.  I read a quote on The Sharpened Pencil's Instagram page the other day that read, "TPT empowers teachers to teach at their best."  This could not be more true for me.  I believe Teachers Pay Teachers makes us each better; whether we are creating resources or searching for materials for our students, we are doing so with our students' needs and learning in mind and at heart.  I have enjoyed getting my store started, finding new teacher friends on social media and now I'm excited to share with you the adventures I have with my fourth graders throughout the year with this blog! 

Well...enough about me!  On to the better part of me...my family! 
This is my husband, Mike and my girls, Avery and Reese.

Oh, how I love my girls!!  I am so lucky to be their mom!  Avery is 3 and Reese is 1.
 

I'm also very excited to announce that we are welcoming a third little bird to our nest in January 2016.
We are all so very excited!!  With each of my pregnancies, I have thought of fun ways to share with my students that I am expecting and have worked hard to prepare my classroom and students for my maternity leave.  While welcoming a new baby into our family is new and exciting for all of us, my students will also be welcoming a new teacher into their lives and I always work hard to make sure the transition goes smoothly...so, expect more on how I am preparing for my maternity leave in the upcoming months!

I am so excited to be starting this journey as a teacher blogger and I am so happy to be welcomed into this community!  Thank you for taking the time to get to know me and my family!  I cannot wait to share all that I have been working on this summer...I have a big classroom makeover coming, I've also been working on redoing my reading and math workshops, I have some old and new classroom management ideas to share, I have found a lot of great deals at favorite dollar spots, and I've been putting my own spin on some of my favorite Pinterest "pins."

But, before I get ahead of myself, here is my first "Monday Made It" and here are a few things that I've been working on...

I had a lot of "no name" papers in my class last year and I would always just set them on a table and have the students come and grab them.  Needless to say, many were left for quite a long time unclaimed.  It was a real problem and I knew I had to try something new!  I saw a sign at Hobby Lobby for a laundry room. Missing socks were given a place to hang as "lost" and I thought that would be perfect for "lost" papers too. 

I looked around for a small cork board and ended up getting this from Target for about $8.  I painted the outside border black just using tempera paint.  (I then spotted one at Walmart for $6 and in the store there was one with a black border!)  I used bright scrapbook paper cardstock that I got in a pack for $5 from Walmart and cut the letters and the black arrow on my Cricut. (Which I got on a virtual garage sale on Facebook! That addiction is a whole other post!)  I used a thin ribbon from Joann's and found the mini bright clothes pins from Michael's.  I think this will be a cute addition to my classroom and also a great way to keep track of no name papers!



To go along with my new color scheme, I wanted to try making tissue paper pom poms for my bulletin boards and I couldn't be happier with the way they turned out!

I got a set of bright colored tissue paper from Target for $5.  Each color had 5 full sheets, which was the perfect number for the thickness/fluffiness I wanted.  I cut the 5 sheets into quarters and was able to get 4 pom poms in each color.  There were many other colors in the pack too, but these go best with my classroom colors.  I don't know why I've waited so long to make these!  They were so much easier than I thought...and did I mention that they turned out amazing?!  I found an easy tutorial on Pinterest.  I was not very precise or very careful (I did have a couple rips!) and they turned out beautiful!!  If you've been thinking of making some for decorations, whether at home or at school, give it a shot, it's easier than you may think!  Expect to see them at all of my little bird's birthday parties in the future! 


One last thing that I made this week was a bunting to put on my desk to fancy it up a bit!  I recently saw a post from SSS Teaching on Instagram and she was my inspiration for this project.


I think this will be a really cute addition to my desk, but maybe it's just my super cute spokes model!  I used my Cricut again as well as the scrapbook cardstock from Walmart.  I glued the letters onto a chalkboard scrapbook paper, laminated them, hole punched each side, strung ribbon through each letter and knotted it.  I really love how it turned out!

Happy Teaching!


Share:

113 comments

  1. I am loving the idea that you've started a blog! I love your IG posts and all your ideas!!! Congrats on #3, SO exciting! ;-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much! I appreciate your support on IG too!!

      Delete
  2. I love your blog design!! Congratulations :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Your blog looks great! I am new to blogging myself. I totally understand where you're coming from when you wrote about how creating for TpT is igniting a passion that had been dying. I totally feel the same way!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much!! I'm happy you could connect & that you've also found TpT as a way to motivate you!!

      Delete
  4. What a beautiful family you have and congratulations on your pregnancy. Your blog looks great and I really enjoyed reading your post. I wish you all the best on your blogging journey. This is such a wonderful group of kind and supportive people.

    Best,
    Julie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much! I appreciate your support!!

      Delete
  5. Love your class decor ideas! Great blog start :-)

    ReplyDelete
  6. I am so excited for you!!!!! What an amazing journey to start :) You definitely have a follower over here! I love your Monday Made Its and need to try those adorable pom poms!!! So cute!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much, you're so kind!! Go for the pom poms, so much easier than I thought!!

      Delete
  7. Congratulations on your blog! I know I was over the moon when I finally got my custom design. Welcome to the crazy world of teacher bloggers!
    Kim
    iTeachSTEM

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes! I was so excited to design & finally have a finished product!! Thanks for your donation & support!!

      Delete
  8. My husband is from the same general area of NY. I love your blog and the made it Monday ideas!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What a small world, we are very close to East Aurora!!

      Delete
  9. My husband is from the same general area of NY. I love your blog and the made it Monday ideas!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Welcome!!!! Your blog is wonderful and your family is beautiful!!! Love all your made its!!! Congrats on your new addition to your family!!! Thanks for linking this up:)
    4th Grade Frolics

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much! I appreciate you checking out my made its!!

      Delete
  11. I'm excited for this blog! I am moving to a 3/4th combo class after 7 years in 4k or K so I need all the help I can get! I love the lost papers board- so handy! Good luck on this new adventure!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is a big move & I hope I will be able to give you some insight into the world of 4th grade!! You will love it!!

      Delete
  12. I am now on the hunt for a Cricut! Hopefully my made it's will come out as cute as yours!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I seriously love it!! I was lucky to find someone selling her machine & 12 cartridges at a very reasonable price! Now I wonder how I lived without it!!

      Delete
  13. Congratulations! Your blog looks terrific! Your family is beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Beautiful looking family and blog. I love your made its. Best wishes!
    123kteach

    ReplyDelete
  15. Congratulations on number 3! I have three daughters - love them all. In fact my number 2 just me a grandma this month!!! I've got you bookmarked and look forward to reading more of your posts!
    iTeach 2nd

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much!! And congratulations on becoming a grandma!!

      Delete
  16. Congratulations Jen!! Your blog looks fantastic! I love the lost papers board! I'm so excited for you to start this new journey!! Best wishes!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Congratulations on your blog! I am a native Western New Yorker(Rochester), I did my undergrad @ SUNY Fredonia. I now live outside of Charlotte, where I teach 4th grade.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you!! I know a lot of Fredonia alum!!

      Delete
  18. You projects are so cute. I would love to take some time to make cute things for my new classroom but unfortunately summer has mostly slipped away.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It always seems to go too quick!! I'm trying to do a little bit each week so I'm not overwhelmed in the last few days/weeks!

      Delete
  19. Congrats on the darling blog! ( & cutie #3!) Happy Summer! Wendy 1stgradefireworks 1stgradefireworks

    ReplyDelete
  20. I love your pom-poms! I just bought some tissue paper the other day, but haven't gotten around to making mine yet. :)

    Victoria
    Enchanted in Elementary

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! I'd love to know how yours turn out! I hope the pin is helpful for you!

      Delete
  21. Congratulation on the baby! So exciting! I love your ideas and especially your honesty about how hou felt about teaching after being home with your baby. I am having similar feelings about going back to work as I am on maternity leavw now too. I am hoping out tpt meet up with help boost my spirits! I can't wait to meet you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so excited to meet you too!! I'm looking forward to our meet up...we can share baby pics & Talk about easing into going back to work!!

      Delete
  22. Awesome Blog Post. Love your crafts! Good luck on your new venture!

    ReplyDelete
  23. I wish a little no-name board would be enough for the papers I get without names, and I teach high school! I have a whole door dedicated to this, and it amazes me how few are ever claimed.

    Kovescence of the Mind

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I can imagine in high school how it can get to be a lot!!

      Delete
  24. Love your made its...makes me want to invest in a cricut!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was lucky to find someone on a virtual garage sale getting rid of her barely used machine & 12 cartridges!! And at a very low price!! Check Craigslist!!

      Delete
  25. Congrats on your new adventure!

    ReplyDelete
  26. I love your new blog design!! Congrats on your new little one- I am loving those chevron binder clips- how stinking cute are those!! Lisa

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you!! And...I know! They are so cute!!

      Delete
  27. Congrats on your new addition and hooray for blog launches. I am super excited about all those etsy goodies for your giveaway.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you!! Crossing my fingers for you!!

      Delete
  28. Congratulations on your new blog!

    ReplyDelete
  29. I absolutely love you blog! I hope to have mine up by next week! You have great ideas and I look forward to learning from you!! Good luck!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much, you are too kind!! I would love to check out your blog next week too!!

      Delete
  30. Your blog is so cute! Excited for your giveaway!

    ReplyDelete
  31. Wow! Your blog is adorable! I just started blogging this summer as well! I don't know how you do it with two little girls and being pregnant! I've got my hands full with 2 boys! Congrats again! And thanks for the giveaway!

    Ashley
    One Step Closer Teaching

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much!! I look forward to checking out your new blog too!!

      Delete
  32. Thanks for the chance to win!

    ReplyDelete
  33. Your blog turned out so cute!! I love it!!

    ReplyDelete
  34. Ugh! No Names are one of my BIGGEST pet peeves. I've seen a lot of cute solutions on TPT.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know! It became a real problem last year! I hope this board will help!

      Delete
  35. Your blog is so cute and your family is precious! I have always wanted to try to make the tissue pom poms, but have never sat down and actually done it. Yours turned out great!
    Alison
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You should try! It was so much easier than I thought it would be!

      Delete
  36. I love the No Name bulletin. I've seen a few different ways to do it on Pinterest, but yours is my favorite!

    Jordan
    Team J's Second Grade Fun

    ReplyDelete
  37. I love your name for your desk. The colors are very bright and cheerful. What font did you use?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! I cut it on my Cricut machine with the cartridge called "Mini monograms."

      Delete
  38. Super cute made it's! I'm visiting from Monday Made It and although I don't keep up with my school blog anymore, I like to visit! Thanks for the awesome giveaway and congrats on your new blog and your TPT store! And congrats on baby number 3! How sweet. Have a blessed week!

    Vicky

    ReplyDelete
  39. I love the bunting. I so need to make one for my desk. Welcome to blogging.

    Kim
    Quinnessential Lessons

    ReplyDelete
  40. I love the way you announced your new arrival! So cute! Welcome to blogging! So excited to read more!

    ReplyDelete
  41. I love the sign you made for your classroom and the cute pregnancy announcement picture!
    Laura
    Enchanting Elementary

    ReplyDelete
  42. Welcome to the blogging world and congrats of your new addition. I really like that arrow on your Lost sign (actually-- I like the entire sign). What cartridge is it from?

    Good luck on your blog and TPT store!

    My Bright Blue House

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Accent essentials is the name of the cartridge. Thank you!!

      Delete
  43. Congrats on your new blog! Your creations are awesome! Very inspiring! :) Pam
    PJ Jots

    ReplyDelete
  44. Love that you are taking the plunge into blog world! I have been contemplating for the past few years as well. You may have inspired me to try!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so glad you've been inspired! Good luck to you and I can't wait to read your blog!!

      Delete
  45. Congrats on your new little bird. I love the photo announcement!

    ReplyDelete
  46. Congrats on your new blog! Look forward to following you!

    ReplyDelete
  47. This is so adorable! Congrats on a new blog and EVEN BIGGER CONGRATS on a new little one!! Prayers for an enjoyable pregnancy! :)

    Denise Hill, #TeacherMom

    ReplyDelete
  48. I love the overall look and feel of your blog! The colors make me happy. Whenever I see the "Two Little Birds" tagline, it makes me hear the first line of that wonderful Corrine Bailey Rae song in my mind....

    Good luck,

    Karen Harris
    from Cool School with Karen

    ReplyDelete
  49. Congrats on the new blog!!! It looks amazing :)
    Julie
    www.bigideasforlittlehands.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  50. What a cute blog!! Congrats on expecting #3!!

    ReplyDelete
  51. Congrats on your blog. I have one in the works too!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Congrats! I can't wait to read yours as well!!

      Delete
  52. Congratulations on the blog, and the pregnancy!!!! SO exciting. Everything looks great..I hope you continue to grow your readership and that you are in extremely successful in your journey.

    ReplyDelete
  53. I am so wanting to start my own blog, but I'm not sure how to create one. I never even thought about watching a youtube video on how to get started. Thanks for the inspiration!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's amazing the tutorials you can find!! Good luck to you!

      Delete
  54. What an amazing start!! Your blog is already AWESOME!!! I love your ideas and will be working on a couple of these myself!! I feel like, besides our difference in teaching experience, we are so similar! I too have been SO inspired and motivated to be better because of TPT. Even though I've only just started, I'm so excited to use the products I've already created!!!

    I can't wait to continue to collaborate with a fellow like-minded fourth grade teacher!! :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so glad you could connect...I think TPT inspires and motivates so many of us and it has been a wonderful thing for me! I cannot wait to continue to collaborate with you in the future too!

      Delete
  55. Congrats on the new blog and the new addition to your family! I'm excited to start following you and learn all about you and your classroom!

    ReplyDelete
  56. I enjoyed reading your blog! I especially loved seeing the pictures of your beautiful family! Congratulations on your newest little one! I know the baby will be beautiful!

    ReplyDelete
  57. Absolutely love the pom pom color scheme!! This is my first year teaching and want to make the same pom poms!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You should try them! Much easier than I thought they would be!! I wish you a wonderful first year teaching!!

      Delete

Design by Laugh Eat Learn // Theme by Pipdig