I haven't blogged in FOREVER, but since I am taking the leap from 5th grade to 8th grade this year I am hoping to get back on track.  Blogging was amazing for me when I first started... I had something to look back at in the preceding years to refresh my brain & it was also a place for me to record my trial and error with lessons. 

This week, my 5 for Friday is all about 5 BIG questions I have going from 5th to 8th grade.  I will be teaching 7 classes and only have them for 50-55 minutes.  This is a BIG change from 3 groups of kids for 100 min.  Any suggestions or advice is welcome whether you teach upper grades or not!!

Class Décor:  This previous year I didn't have a class theme, I had a color scheme.  I think I want to stick to the color scheme, but am also pondering changing it to the school colors.  I really don't want to spend the money on buying new décor because I just redid my room last year & I know I will be buying resources for my new grade level.  With all of that aside, how much décor do you put up in an 8th grade classroom.  I know it should be all cutesy, but I want it to fit me and she my students who I am.  I am thinking of the wall being bare and adding anchor charts & such as we go.  And yes I said anchor charts in 8th grade... suggestions?

Class Library:  I know I want to have one, but don't know how I want to check the books out.  In the past, I have just had the honor system.  The students could borrow a book & put it back when they are finished with it.  I haven't really had too many books walk off, so I think I may keep this system.  I don't want anything that will take away the time I would use to grade and plan lessons.  Also, we have a school library that I am planning to give them time to go to every other week for a portion of the class period.  This has made it so that the students really don't borrow my books as much.

Warm-ups: When I was teaching 5th grade, the students had a word of the day and DOL to complete each day when they first came into the room.  This gave them something to do so that I could get my self together at the beginning of the period and collect or speak to any students that I needed to before class.  I would like to do something similar next year, but I would like for it to really be centered around English or writing.  I could to DOL, but I know the students didn't really enjoy it. On the flip side, I would give a test every 4 weeks over the material and voila a test grade for English.  I have found these 2 resources on TPT  and am pondering purchasing them... Let me know if you have used either of these or know of another warm-up for 8th grade ELA.
ENTIRE Year of FUN Writing Warm-Ups: 20% OFF!!!      A YEAR OF ENGLISH CLASS STARTERS: Prompts, Literary Terms,

Picking up and handing out work:  I have trays for each period and subject last year.  That seems unreasonable for next year because that would be 14 trays.  I will have 7 periods of Reading/Writing.  I am thinking that I will do a tray a period or I could have them turn them into me in ABC order at the end of the period.  I am wanting to work smarter not harder since I will have like 125 students and 2 subjects to grade for each.  Any ideas on how to pass out work? Last year I would just have students who had completed their warm-ups pass them out at the beginning of the period.


Back to School Must Haves:  In this section I am liking for any back to school must haves that my upper teachers use... from introduction letters to parents, supply list, rules introduction to getting to know you activities and reading inventories.  If you have any suggestions, please comment below or email me at fearlessin5th@yahoo.com.

Thanks for bearing with me through lots of rambling!!

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