As August starts to roll around, we as teachers begin thinking about our classroom and resources, some of the things we want to do the first day, week and so forth! What better way to get some great new ideas then to head on over to Teachers Pay Teachers to check out some of the great resources and school items that will make planning and heading back to school that much easier!!

Now is the best time to head on over to Teachers Pay Teachers as they are offering a SITE WIDE SALE for all your purchases beginning August 4-5! You definitely don’t want to miss out! Be sure to check it out and use the code BTS14 to take adantage of the some of the greatest deals!!

In addition, as we all know just how important it is to stock up on great resources as you head back to school, we are offering an ADDITIONAL 15% OFF your items!! Just click on the link below to check out some really great products that will start you off in September, and keep you organized all year long!!


If Don’t have a Teachers Pay Teachers account? Get one now! It’s completely free and you’ll be able to purchase great teacher resources written by teachers, for teachers! Some of the best resources we use in our classrooms were purchased from TPT!

We’re looking forward to beginning a new school year and with that will be working on adding new products to our store, as well as, great resources for free here on our website!! Definitely check back for new updates and don’t forget to share our page with your colleagues!


Loriana, Elita and Lisa


Mean Stinks: Bullying Awareness Posters

We are firm believers that we are all a community of learners. We work together and improve our practice on a daily basis. When we find resources that are useful and done really well, we utilize, share and discuss them.

I recently came across a wonderful set of posters on bullying. They are ready to use and absolutely free! Get them here!

After a little research, I found a fantastic website where teachers and schools post pictures, initiatives within their classrooms, schools and communities on how they are addressing bullying.Is The website is and there is a plethora of resources, ideas and activities!

I particularly love the paint your pinky blue campaign from Secret and promoted by Demi Lovato.  Although it has been around for just over a year, I would love to start it at my school!Billboard_Mean-Stinks_Follow-Us_Large


The website has over 2,000,000 followers and growing every day.   I am inspired to see such great content and initiatives from all around. Join in and let us know what initiatives you have in your classrooms, schools and communities!

For other great resources see our previous posts on Bullying and its Many Forms, The Tuesday 12: 12 Fantastic Books to discuss Bullying with your students, Bullying: Reporting vs. Tattling.  



Chris Bosh on Computer Coding

Computer CodingIt’s been a crazy two months of school.  I am feeling it, how about you? No matter how organized we try to be, things get out of hand and we are forever trying to catch up.  I must apologize to you all; we’ve been absent far too long from our blog.  We are sorry.

Today, I want to get right back into the swing of things.  I recently read an article on Chris Bosh (NBA player for the Miami Heat) writing about why coding is an important skill students need to learn.  I had written about this back in March of this year, Coding: An Essential Skill.  In that post, I included a great video and a link on how to incorporate coding into the elementary classroom.  Chris Bosh is in that video too, but he now has written an essay for WIRED magazine.  This is a wonderful way to peak the interest of our students.  A popular NBA player known by many, leading the way to make students understand the world around them!  Take a look and let us know what you think.

Follow the link for the article.

Here’s Why You Should Learn to Code by Chris Bosh via WIRED

Getting You Ready for Back to School with Scholar’s Choice

As you know, we were given the wonderful opportunity to become Scholar’s Choice Content Champions on their Teacher Blog!

Here’s our most recent article: Back to Cool (Part 1): 12 Creative Community Building Activities for the First Week where we feature six engaging, fun, and creative activities to welcome your students to your classroom.

Be sure to try out these fantastic ideas with your students!!

Accountable Talk in the Math Classroom: Discussion Starter Prompts!

As I’ve written before, I’m in the process of creating a math focus wall for my classroom which will be centred around my SMART Board.  I’ve found a couple of inspiration pics on Pinterest, but I’m still working on a plan that will work for my students.  One of the things that I plan to include are sentence starters to help students during math discussions.

A key component of a successful mass lesson is having the students engaged in robust mathematical dialogue.  I’m a huge fan of Lucy West (check out her site if you still haven’t!) and her article “Turn and Talk: One Powerful Practice, So Many Uses” (West and Cameron), was on my summer reading list.  According to West and Cameron, “robust student academic discourse is vital for deep learning, [but] it is also a practice we see far too little of in many classrooms.”

There may be several reasons for the lack of discourse during math classes—perhaps there may not be enough time, students may not have enough to say, or students tend to lose track and start socializing.  I know that I have overheard my students discuss weekend plans when they should be discussing the methods they used to solve their math problem! All these reasons for lack of math discourse may be tied to one key component overall—students are not sure how to talk about math.  This would explain why math discourse may take up “too much time”, “just doesn’t work”, or students “lose track”.  If students knew how to talk about math, then they would have more opportunities for robust dialogue.

In order to solve this overall problem, I decided to create discussion starter prompts.  I created these on legal size paper as I will be posting them on my math focus wall on a rotating basis. Just print, laminate, and post!

math discourse cards

Something New, Something Different – Check out ‘Simply Made by Lisa’

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Along with working on creating fantastic resources for our fellow friends here at Teaching Rocks, I have also taken interest in a new, creative and unique hobby! I have called it ‘Simply Made’ – custom made wood blocks and other things!

Here you will find creative customized wood blocks and letters, specially designed to add character to your little one’s nursery, child’s room, as well as, other rooms in your home. They also make the perfect gift for others who may be expecting, have just had a little one, got engaged, married, accomplished something great, graduated from school, having a special birthday, a token of thanks to friends, teachers and SO much more! Simply put, these blocks and letters, among other things can be created to match any theme, print or occasion! The possibilities are truly endless!

I have also created a folder filled with personalized subway art and decorative posters to match any of your sets, or to make a special gift on it’s own!

I get special requests all the time and am happy to hear any and all of your ideas! I truly enjoy making new things and love how the projects have been coming out!

This is the best time to start looking at some new things for your classroom, which is why I decided to post today about ‘Simply Made’. I have been getting some special requests such as initials for teacher’s desks, welcome blocks, name blocks and much more! You should definitely check it out! I have a page on facebook where you can take a look at all the projects I have worked on and completed so far…be sure to ‘like’ my page while you are there! I also have a board on Pinterest  where you can also see the many completed projects! I would love to hear any feedback! Let me know what you think!

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