Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Exciting News, Riveting Robots & MORE Chevron!

Hey there!

I am excited to announce that I will be pairing up with Creative Teaching Press to receive and review their products here on my blog! What's more exciting is.... I will be able to do GIVEAWAYS so you can have a chance at trying out their products too! YAY!

So, to kick it off, I am going to show you how I have been using some of their newer [and cuter] lines in my classroom this year!

The first is their Riveting Robots! Each year I have had a theme in my classroom. The first year I used stars everywhere and had a star calendar and star job chart. Last year I used owls. I love owls and have an overall general chevron theme going, but I wanted a new calendar, job chart, and additional theme since I have had the same students the past couple of years. I was shopping at Lakeshore one day [teacher heaven!] and saw these cute gears and robots borders. I did some digging on the CTP website and was hooked! I decided that the owls had been more of a girly theme [as most are, being that they are décor items] so I figured the boys would appreciate this theme a bit more :)

Here's a look at how I used them:

I decided to make my hallway bulletin more permanent this year to display student work, and change the covering on my door periodically instead [see below for my doors so far this year!] On the right is the permanent work display with their Dots on Turquoise Border, and on the left I used the Nuts & Bolts poster from the Riveting Robots Bulletin Board Set.  I love mixing patterns, so the Target wrapping papers and polka dot borders were fun to mix and match!

Here's how I use the poster more specifically: since it says "The Nuts & Bolts of" and leaves it open-ended for a variety of uses, I decided to use it to display our "objectives" or broad learning concepts in each subject. Bible is changed weekly to include our unit focus and memory verse, but the others change less frequently. I laminated it and use a dry erase marker so I can change, add, and or remove things as often as I need. I like displaying it in the hallways for parents and visitors to see what we're working on! I also used the gear to show what we will be working on in the near future!
To make attendance a bit more visual [and to cover my not so attractive desk!] I used the Riveting Robots Designer Cut-outs with some chevron contact paper I found on Amazon. I wrote my students' names and laminated them for durability all year, and added magnets to the back. My little "robots" report each day to show if they are absent or present. It's just a fun, silly way I brought in the robots some more :)
I [of course] had to buy a new calendar set & job chart to match my other new robot themed items! Since I have a lack of wall space and A LOT of windows, I decided to make my window my calendar space. Since we are in 3rd grade now, I don't feel the need to have a calendar time/morning meeting everyday. Instead, the calendar is one of my classroom jobs. We use window markers from Pat Catan's in bright colors to write the regular date and digital date below the calendar itself :)  The days of the week and weather report are below the window on the wall.
Of course the job chart needed a fun title to it [in 1st grade they were "Star Helpers" and last year they were "Owl-fully Helpful!"] This year, they are my "Handy Helpers!" :)
Lastly, I used the corresponding gears border [my favorite of the whole line!] and robot cut-outs to make my door covering to kick off the new year.... we were "Gearing Up for Third Grade!"
My only regret was not ordering the matching letters they have for this line. When I was shopping at Lakeshore they had some items for the line, but not all of them. So I had to go online to buy the other pieces I needed/wanted. I had already bought the above set of letters, so I made them work. But I am thinking I am going to have to get the matching nuts and bolts style lettering for future use.
What do you think of the Riveting Robots line?!? Leave some comments below and let me know! I personally love, as did the boys in my class!! What is great about it, too, is there are many colors and patterns mixed into everything so it can easily go along with many of the items you already have. If you have primary colors, polka dots, grays and blacks, chevron - it matches them all! and the robots are lots of fun!:)
Speaking of chevron..... CTP has some FANTASTIC new borders out that are ChEvRoN!! I just had to have them when I saw them online. Many of the colors were back-ordered in August, so I had to wait on a couple of them, but I did get a few others. I am eyeing some more of them too! As I said above [and you can see in my pictures] I have a lot of chevron going on. So I had to have the borders.. I am also using their chevron nameplates on my students' desks. I took a tip from Pinterest and use Velcro to attach them to the desks - no more tape mess! I also took ANOTHER idea from Pinterest and laminated them now. Now my students practice writing their first and last name in neat cursive everyday with a dry erase marker. We just started this after returning from Christmas break and it is working well.  Here's a look at them and a link to see them all:

These are the Chevron Name Plates we are currently using:
Since our desks open upward, we keep the markers hooked on upside down and they won't fall off whenever we open our desks :) 
At the beginning of the year I was using these name plates I picked up at Lakeshore:

I ran out of the turquoise and orange which I had used to start the year, so I bought the newer chevron ones since they were all I could find. Now, on CTP's website I discovered they have other chevron name plates in solid colors that I'm liking better for next year!
This is their Turquoise Chevron Border around my dry erase board.. it looks more aqua blue on the website, but it is a true turquoise in person!

 Valentine's door using Chocolate Chevron Border:
Christmas door - wishing I had the Poppy Red Chevron Border instead! hopefully next year :) 
What I like most about the borders [beside the fact that they are chevron ;)] is the width. They are 3" wide, compared to border that is curvy. It gives a clean, bright edge.... especially on those pesky bulletin boards! Do you have any of their chevron borders? What colors do you have, and what do you think of them!? I currently have what you see above, along with the Slate Grey. My wish list includes the Poppy Red and Lime Green too!
Well, I think that's all for today.... whew, I'm tired! :)
Have a blessed week, and stay warm!
Tami :)

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