Friday, August 28, 2015

Five for Friday {August 28th}

Welcome to my very first Five for Friday! I've linked up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for this weekly post about random things from today or this past week, and I am so excited to share everything that has happened this past week...which was the first full week back to school by the way. There really is no tired like first week back to school teacher tired! Anyways, let's get started before I get distracted! 

I have opened up my class to my wonderful, new students, but my class is still not finished! Thankfully, I haven't had any anxiety about it, because I know my students could care less what is on the boards. So, look forward to another post with an incomplete classroom class reveal.

It would have been easier if my classroom was smaller. I just moved in, and I was amazed at the size! So many bulletin boards to fill up!

I have felt so out of the TPT/blogging loop the past month because I have been getting ready for back to school, but a few days ago I finally updated my Character Education Posters on my TPT page. Since I'm only about five months in, I don't know how I will be able to balance TPT with my first grade classroom. Share any tips you have please! :)

Too bad the lighting isn't that great! Of course, the rest of the bulletin boards are still incomplete.

I'm a firm believer in starting with regular class procedures on the first day of school, so I started guided reading and centers the very first day. Of course, I was merely teaching the procedures and no real content was delivered. Since I am enforcing the procedures, I don't have time to be with my "teacher group," so I had them doing independent work while I roamed around the class.

The ipads of course the highlight of all of my students' day.  They love this center, and can't wait to move from my teacher table to the ipads.

The hardest to teach is read to self and read to someone.  It takes a lot of stamina and practice, but I know my students can do it.

I still have to add the writing center and word work center, but those will probably be on another day.

This was one of my favorite hacks this year. I created five folders for any possible new students I might get in the school year. I put in the welcome packet and other assessments I would like them to do.  Five days in, and I already had not one, but two new students! Best. Hack. Ever.

The last one is without a picture, but I am so proud of it that I couldn't dismiss it. I am so incredibly proud to say that I have made lunch every day this past week. Let's see if I will keep this up! 

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Currently August 2015

Welcome to my very first Currently, and I am happy to be in such a wonderful link up with Farley at Oh Boy Fourth Grade! I'm not exactly sure how to do this, but I will go with my first instinct. :)

It's such an exciting time in my life right now. Not because it's August, and I start school school in 6 days! (That may have a lot to do with it actually...) But besides that, I've started my new blog, 4.5 months in as a teacher-author at Teachers Pay Teachers, and I'm moving to an amazing school that I want to grow old in. These are all huge steps, and I can't wait to document all of my experiences- the good and the bad. Well, without further ado, let's get started.

Listening: If you follow me on Instagram, then you know I went to a "Unconference" for the California Teachers Summit this past Friday.  Well, on my way there (12 minute drive), and on my way back, I had Icona Pop's "Emergency" song on replay BLASTING from my car.  It is just so perfect, and I just can't stop dancing to it. Listen to it now! If you don't like it, I'm sorry. :)

Loving: Gahahhhhhhhh, I am so in love and in blog heaven. I am loving my new blog that Laine from A Little Piece of Africa created for me. It is just so beautiful, and it reminds me of my wedding because of the colors. Also, I feel that it really is similar to my personality! It's soothing, calm, but still popping with a little bit of color! 

Thinking: There are so many teacher planners on TPT, and I have no idea which one to choose from. Do you have any suggestions? I'm a first grade teacher, and I would love for any suggestions.  Also, when you buy your teacher planner on TPT, do you print it at home and bind or just put it in a folder?

Wanting: I got hired at the most amazing charter school about 3-4 weeks ago, but the classroom they are going to give me is being used as the summer school room, so I am not able to move in until this Friday. I am just dreaming of what it looks like, and how long it will take to clean it up and set it up. I know that it is like three times the size of my last class, so I have to fill it up.  I will definitely  be blogging about the entire process. 

Needing: Let me explain my life, and I know it's going to be a total excuse, but let me explain anyways. I went to UCSD to get my degree and gained 15 lbs. Without any breaks, I went straight to graduate school and started my first teaching job at the same time. Another 15 lbs. :( Then the wedding right after I graduated, and I feel like I barely had any time just to myself.  In between creating resources for my class, home visits, and wedding planning, I barely had any time to myself. NOW....I have no excuses!!!! Starting today I will be joining CHUZE fitness (why don't they just spell choose :(), and I am going to get fit. Keep me accountable, please. Pretty please. 

B2S RAK: So it took a little while to understand what RAK acronym stood for, but once I read a few Currently, I got that it meant Random Acts of Kindness. I know...super slow this beautiful Sunday morning.  Anyways, I'm finally a part of a grade level team, and I am so excited to be working with everyone.  I plan on creating little goodies to give them on the first day.  Nothing to big, but maybe candies, pens, notepads, and some stuff teachers like. I have to visit the Dollar Tree and Target. 

Anyways, it was a pleasure writing in this link up.  Looking forward to next month! Ciao! 

Saturday, August 1, 2015

My Fairytale Wedding

Hello! If you read my first post on my blog, then you know that my blog takes me to a happy place.  I could stare at it for hours...not because Laine from A Little Piece of Africa did the most spectacular job, but because of the colors!! I have a green/mint/gold/and peach theme going, and those were also the colors of my wedding which was January 2015.  Every time I look at my blog, I'm reminded of our fairytale wedding.  

Wedding Trailer

I call it our fairytale wedding not because it was pricey or elegant, but because all the planning happened as if a fairy God mother planned it for me, and all I had to do was stand and wait for my rags to be transformed into a beautiful ball gown. I know that God had a hand in everything, because not a single issue came up!  I was able to relax, party, dance, and enjoy every single second of our celebration.  

This may have been my experience because I planned and executed this wedding like I plan teaching.  You guys know how it goes...You make lists on what you need to get accomplished, you have an end objective, you make charts, plans, back up plans, and then start your lessons.  The magic to teaching is not that part, but what you do once the lesson starts.  Things don't exactly go as planned all the time, and we just have to roll with the changes.  So that's what I did for my wedding. 

When I taught my first year in first grade, I was told by my graduate advisor that nothing needs to be perfect because the 6 year olds will not tell the difference.  That was excellent advice for my first year in first grade and also my life! Growing up I used to be a perfectionist. I would spend hours perfecting my dance routines, creating the most beautiful centerfold page in the school newspaper, or my papers in AP classes, and I cannot confidently say that the extra hours I spent to be "perfect" paid off.  It just wasn't worth it. 

Don't get me wrong! I am an extremely hard-worker, and I give it my all almost 100% of the time (everybody has those days), but I spend less hours worrying about "what if it's not perfect," or "how will others view me?"  So that was my attitude towards the wedding.  I had done all of the planning ahead of time, and now it was time to party. And party I did. :) 

I literally spent less than $40 on decorating the ceremony location. I picked a location that had both ceremony and the reception was on the same site, AND that the ceremony location was already beautiful as is.   Those branches on the that structure are all natural, so it was so beautiful!

 I would be a total liar if I said I wasn't nervous about the traditional Bridal Armenian dance I was going to perform for my husband.  That was the scariest part about the wedding, but at that moment I was just thinking that the audience was going to get what they get, and that was the best I could do.

To get the dances going, our dj has the most fabulous idea of getting everyone on the dance floor to take group photos, and then to turn on the music in the middle! It was such a hit and it was wonderful to have the dancing start with a huge crowd of people.  The video of the entire event is so priceless.
Well, that was our fairytale wedding, and now you understand why I'm so crazy about my blog colors.  Until next time!

Venue: Carmel Mountain Ranch Country Club (San Diego, CA)
Photography: A StoryBook Moment Photography
Videography: Rugger Productions
Dress: Etsy
Hair: Sim Bilben from Jule Salon and Boutique
DJ: Battleson DJ
Florals: La Belle Bloom
Cake: Edelweiss Bakery

Welcome to My Blog

Hello and welcome to Love Learning with Liana!!! I'm so glad that you have made it to my happy place.  I'll tell you why it's such a happy place for me in another post. ;) If you are a teacher looking to read about interesting things happening in education or looking to for innovative ways to teach primary grades K-2, then you have come to the perfect place! In my blog, I plan on posting a lot of memorable experiences from teaching in my class and also connecting with other teachers from around the world!

Before, I get into anything else though, I need to talk about the person who created the blog. Look at it, it's so pretty, and it's made by the most awesome person ever...Laine Sutherland from A Little Piece of Africa.  She is so talented, kind, wonderful, and every other positive adjective you can find. I would never in a million years be able to do this beautiful work. She's provided me with the most amazing goodies that I just can't wait to use. 

Like this button that I will be flashing here and there. How cute is it??! I'm in blog heaven! Laine, if you are reading this, then you should know that you are simply amazing!

Well if you haven't already guessed it, then I should let you know that I'm Liana! I'm a 25 year old teacher in sunny San Diego, California, and it's going to be my 4th year teaching. Before I start talking about teaching, I wanted to tell you a little bit about who I am. First thing first, I love Jesus.  I am who I am because of Jesus, and he is my light in this crazy world. :) 

Another thing you should probably know about me is that I have a million and two hobbies!  I love everything from basketball to chess to dancing to reading to Netflixing to spending endless hours creating for my classroom and Teachers Pay Teachers.    I also love love LOVE hanging out with my husband and best friends. They're wonderful, but they just can't handle too much of my Teacher/TpT talk. Soooooo.....this is also a personal advertisement for a blogger bestie. :P 

Started off sarcastic, but became something else...
Anyways! Let's get started on my life as a teacher.  My first two years of teaching were in Los Angeles, and I taught kindergarten and first grade. I absolutely loved teaching those years, but then I got engaged! I had wanted to move from LA to SD because I wanted to get situated in a school before our wedding in January.  It was hectic at first getting used to a new city, new apartment, and new teaching environment, but it all ended up to be worth it because I married the most amazing man in the whole wide world!   

That's him!
If you're interested, my next post will be about my wedding! You might even see some photos and even a video!  

Back to teacher talk! I'm a total elementary teacher at heart, but when I moved down to San Diego, I accepted a position teaching high school English and ESL.  I know, totally crazy! When I told family and friends the grades I taught, they were surprised about my jump.  I had wonderful experiences at the high school, but I knew that I belonged in an elementary school. Thankfully, I am now teaching at the most amazing ELEMENTARY school.  

My students from the past will be missed! Everyone warned me that teaching high school was going to be much harder than first grade, but fortunately, I did not experience that! My students were awesome, they cared for me and for one another (after weeks of training), and most importantly they wanted to improve.  

Nonetheless, I'm more excited this year than I have ever been before.  If you know me, then you are probably saying, "Wow" because I am already a pretty excited person about education.  What can I say? It's the field I belong in, and it's the field that I put most of my energy in!  Plus, the new school I'm at looks at students with a social justice lens, and the the teachers and administrators are just so darn amazing!  

You may be thinking that this new school spurred my decision to create a new blog, but it's really not.  In the past few weeks, I have felt so much encouragement and inspiration from amazing teacher/blogger/creators like Ashley from Schroeder Shenanigans in 2ndErin from I'm Lovin LitAngie from Lucky Little Learners, and Christina from Second Grade Sugar and Spice.  

Gosh!! These ladies are so encouraging! After reading their blogs, I had the intense desire to create my own and share my own thoughts with the world! I know too many exclamation marks, but I'm too excited...  :P 

The end of my extremely long welcome post has come to an end, but I hope we don't have to stop connecting. I would love to hear from you! Leave me a comment below if you have ever had any teaching/life transitions in your life?  How did you manage? I'm looking forward to hearing from you.