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Resources We Love BLOG HOP GIVEAWAY!

Welcome to our “Resources We LOVE Blog Hop!
Blog Hop Giveaway
We are teaming up with some amazing and talented bloggers for a HUGE GIVEAWAY! There are two parts to this amazing GIVEAWAY, so check it out!

Want to win a $100 Target gift card? 
Who doesn’t???? We all LOVE Target!
Enter below! 
In order to qualify, you must complete all tasks! 
Good Luck!


We all have those resources that we could not live without in our classroom, are we right?!! For us, one of our favorite resources are our Sit Spots! We love Flexible Seating and we have found that Sit Spots work extremely well for the Flexible Seating classroom. 
If you would like to learn more about Flexible Seating, check out our blog posts by clicking here and here! With Flexible Seating, students choose different seats and sit next to different students every day. Sometimes, we need our students to have certain partners or to be in certain groups for certain activities! Sit Spots are our answer! In our classroom, we use four different colors of Sit Spots. We group our students into four ability based groups. Each color represents a different group. For example, our green colored dots could be our high group, etc… Sit Spots are the perfect way to organize partners, centers, teams, and any other grouping that you need to create. They are also great for dismissing students, or calling on different groups of students to choral read. You could call the purple group first or the color with the most girls. The possibilities are endless! We also use our Sit Spots to bring students together for direct instruction or for class meetings. 
To learn more about Sit Spots, CLICK HERE! 
Since we could not live without our Sit Spots, 
we know you would love them too!
To win a $50 gift card for your own class set of Sit Spots, 
enter our raffle below!

Want to find out if Sit Spots work on your flooring? 

Get a sample Sit Spot for FREE and test it out! 
Just click here!
Ready to see what the next blogger is raffling off? 
Click the image below to HOP on over!
Each blogger is giving away a resource they 
LOVE to use in their classroom! 
This Blog Hop has a $100 Target Gift Card 
and 12 total resources up for grabs! 
Happy Hopping!

Top 5 Reasons to Subscribe to Our Newsletter!

 Hello! We are Deserae and Michelle, 
also known as The Rigorous Owl! 
We are so happy that you are here! 
We guide passionate educators who are determined to stand out from the crowd by providing thorough, high quality, no prep lessons that will keep students engaged and begging for more. 
Our goal is to help students love their learning 
and in turn love you, their teacher.
We are very passionate about our students, the materials that we use in the classroom, making learning fun, and sharing great ideas and strategies with teachers like you!
By subscribing our NEWSLETTER, you will get the 
Red Carpet Treatment from DAY 1! 
Here are the Top 5 Reason’s to subscribe!
The Rigorous Owl
 In every Newsletter, it is our #1 goal to bring you VALUE! 
This means that you will not just get product updates. 
You will get something of VALUE that you can use! 
We have brainstormed a list of ideas to GIVE to you, our subscribers. We will send some new posters to use in your room, a video showing a strategy to use with your students, some cute homework passes that serve as a free gift to your students for holidays, and so much more! We are constantly popping into each other’s room to say, “Hey, we should give this to our subscribers!” 
It will always be a Newsletter worth opening! 
The Rigorous Owl
 Here is the #2 Reason to Subscribe! You will get these colorful Key Idea and Details Posters for your classroom for FREE! These posters cover your basics from RL 1, 2 & 3, HOWEVER, they also dive SO MUCH DEEPER! For example, RL 3 says Characters… Well, we go over your basic Character Traits (that everyone else does…yawn…) AND we also include Character Analysis, Character Change, Character Motivation, and the Types of Characters!
These posters serve as great Anchor Charts to 
use throughout the year!
The Rigorous Owl
 The #3 Reason is that you get our Literacy Center Toolkit (that’s completely editable) for FREE! Yep, another amazing FREEBIE! Students love using this board to guide their Literacy Center Rotations! Check out our blog posts on Literacy Centers by clicking herehere, and here!
The Rigorous Owl
 Are you ready for another FREEBIE? 
The #4 reason to subscribe to our newsletter is that you get our 200 Key Idea and Details Sentence Frames for FREE! These are AMAZING and we personally use them every day and all year long in our classrooms! This is how students respond to their independent reading books. The possibilities are endless on how you will use them!
The Rigorous Owl
 The #5 reason to subscribe is that you will be the first to know about our new products. Why do you need to know this? Because all of our new products are 50% off for the first 48 hours! You can also follow us on TPT by clicking here to get notified! Just click the green star!
The Rigorous Owl
Now, if we weren’t who we are, we would have stopped at 5 reasons, but WE ARE THE RIGOROUS OWL! We aim to go above and beyond for YOU! There are definitely more than 5 reasons to subscribe to our newsletter. Inside of our newsletter, you will also find a schedule of private VIP sales JUST FOR OUR SUBSCRIBERS! We also include Blog Highlights from recent blog posts. We love blogging about themed activities, strategies for teaching a standard, and other ways to help you in your classroom! (By the way, if you aren’t following our blog, please do!)
So, there you have it! 
Here are the Top 5 (plus more) reasons to 
Subscribe to The Rigorous Owl’s Newsletter!
We hope you will subscribe and share in our adventure in the most rewarding job there is out there! We love what we do and we know you do too! Our goal is to make a difference in your teaching life and add value to your classroom!


Check it out on Instagram! 
Simply search: The Rigorous Owl
We are so excited to be participating in a New Year’s Giveaway with such amazing TPT sellers! 
Start your New Year off right by going on a shopping spree on us!
Giveaway ends Jan. 1 @ 11:59pm PST. 
Good Luck!

Top Takeaways from The Ron Clark Academy

We are so excited to share our top takeaways from our visit to the Ron Clark Academy. I’m sure you’ve heard of the Ron Clark Academy, and yes, the rumors are true.The Ron Clark Academy is absolutely amazing!
If we were to sum up our trip in one word, our word would be “ELECTRIC.”
Our experience at The Ron Clark Academy was ELECTRIC.
The vibe, the passion, the learning, the feeling,,, everything was ELECTRIC.
If you have not heard of the Ron Clark Academy,
Click here to learn more.
So, what is it like visiting The Ron Clark Academy?

Click here to Get the Feel!

With all of that being said, we can’t wait to share our top takeaways from our visit! Here it goes…

1. Student Relationships
We all know that student relationships are important, but have you ever considered that student relationships are EVERYTHING? When is the last time you looked at your students in their eyes? We mean REALLY looked into their eyes when you were delivering a lesson? It’s that connection that inspires students to rise up and achieve what you are asking from them. The next time you deliver a lesson, notice how many eyes you are looking into. Find out your students’ interests, hobbies, likes and dislikes. Have you eaten lunch with them? Do you have conversations that do not involve academics? Setting this positive personal relationship with students is the foundation for everything else.

2. Engagement
Throughout the entire training, there were three words that were mentioned over and over again. MUSIC. MOVEMENT. MAGIC. These three components are crucial for student engagement.
Mrs. Bearden said, “Music is the heart beat of life.” Wow, right?! How often do you have music playing in your classroom? According to our training, it should be ALL THE TIME. Music should be playing as your students enter and exit your classroom. Loud, upbeat, relevant music that your students enjoy listening to! Music should be playing in the background while you are teaching, music should be played while students are independently working. Go to You Tube and type in: Pop Instrumental Music and the year. You will have a plethora of options to choose from! Students can also create music by doing short chants or cheers. Music brings spirit, excitement and enthusiasm.
How much do your students move around the room? They should! How often do you move around the room? Your answer should be ALWAYS! Movement is another way to build a connection with your students. When you deliver a lesson, talk with your hands. We learned that your hands should be moving in an invisible box close to your body for normal speech. When something is of great importance, your hands should break through this invisible box to let students know that they should be listening! If you are walking around the room, STOP when you get to an important point to draw attention. It’s all about these  “opposites” that students will quickly pick up on. Students learn when they are moving! Gestures are a great way to reach your students.
Magic is that little something extra that YOU bring to a lesson. A scenario was presented… Imagine that there are six classrooms… three on each side that have their doors open. Each of them has the same materials, the same classroom decor, the same lesson, the same lesson plans, etc… You walk through the hallway and are asked to pick what classroom you would like to be a part of. You pick. What made you pick that classroom? Was it the smile on the teacher’s face? Was it the smile on her students’ faces? Was it the quick joke? Was it the way she moved? Whatever it was, it was her MAGIC. The teacher makes the difference.

3. Teach High
At the Ron Clark Academy, Ron encouraged us to keep teaching to the high students of your class. Don’t stop because a few do not understand. Keep going! He advises that this is what will motivate the others to improve! This is a great reminder! Too often, we may hold the higher students back. We need to provide the enrichment they need, while providing intervention to those that need it also. We should always move forward!

4. Consistency
No matter what goals you set for yourself and your students, we need to remember that consistency is key. You can have the best plans, but wonder in the end why they didn’t pay off? You may find yourself blaming your students or complaining to others about how nothing you do seems to work. The problem, as hard as it is to admit, is YOU! You are the number one reason your plans do not work out. You are in charge of how successful you and your students are. The faster you realize this, the further you will get reaching your goals. Start small. Set achievable goals that you can follow through with and build onto them!

5. Parents
Here was one of our BIGGEST take-away from the Ron Clark Academy. If we are being honest, it’s where we struggle the most. Parents. Am I speaking to ya? We can love on our students day after day, but until we love our students’ parents and get their buy-in and involvement, we will keep wondering where we are going wrong.
Have you ever gone above and beyond for a student and then find out that it’s their parent who filed a complaint on you or went to the principal because they questioned something you did? EVERY TIME… are we right?! Ron encourages us to keep two separate compartments. He tells us to separate our heads from our heart. Who’s in your heart? Your personal life and your students. Who’s in your head? The parents. Never let your head affect your heart. Don’t take it too personal and let it affect your heart! You are not going to be able to please everyone all of the time. Someone will hear a story wrong or view something in a different light from what you intended it to be.
With that being said, how should we deal with parents? According to Ron, we should give them the red carpet treatment. Take the extra time to build rapport with them. Get to know their names and their entire family. Build relationships! Have you ever done a home visit? If not, maybe consider going to “that student’s” home to grasp a full picture of who they are. Get that parent’s support and buy-in. Another thought is to consider the way you dress. If there are a group of teachers and you are dressed the nicest, how do you think that you are perceived? Ron stated, “Perception is reality.” The way that parents see you is the reality that they have painted in their heads. When a parent has respect for you, they will be more willing to work with you in a positive way!

So, what we are going to implement at our school? We believe that the above takeaways are more of a mindset than anything else. They are great reminders and philosophies to use in your classroom on a daily basis.

Below, you will find different strategies that we plan to implement. Again, we are going to start small and take it one step at a time so that we can have consistency and success. Here are some amazing strategies that we saw at the Ron Clark Academy.

  • Taking the Floor: Taking the floor is all about students answering questions posed by you and moving into a classroom discussion. This strategy puts students in control and gives them a voice. If they have an answer PREPARED and are ready to speak, they simply stand up and address the class (not you). If two students stand up at the same time, they work out who will speak first. For example, if Bob and Mary stand up at the same time and start speaking, Bob can say, “Go ahead Mary. If there is something else I want to add, I will.” Mary can then speak and ask Bob if there was anything else.
  • Chants: Chants are short little cheers or attention grabbers. Chants redirect student behavior. For example, if you’re moving around the room and students are not looking at you, you could say, “Track me now!” Students can reply, “Zoom Zoom Pow!” Students would use gestures while doing this. After students respond, you should wait to make sure that everyone is actually looking before moving on.
  • Ways to Celebrate: Students should celebrate each other’s accomplishments! Teachers should encourage students to whisper, “Great Job,” if a student “rocks” an answer. That act should get praise too! Students should not be timid to give praise to students that deserve it!
  • Essential 55: Ron Clark’s Essential 55 is critical for students to be able to do any of the above tasks. Students need to know how to behave and how to consider students and teachers around them. Ron Clark says that he values the role playing of the Essential 55.
  • House System: This is what we are MOST excited about implementing at our school. We believe that the House System provides the sense of family that is critical for a school. If you haven’t heard of a House System or if you haven’t checked it out, be sure to! They have made it so easy for us! The Ron Clark Academy has a FREE app available in your app store. Once you download it, click on Resources and scroll down to Hope King’s House System. She has a whole article titled, “Houses for Dummies.” It is awesome. It takes you through the idea step-by-step! We plan to roll out this House System in upper grades first, work out the kinks, and then go school wide.
Well, we hope that you have had some takeaways from reading about our trip! 
If you are every able to go to the Ron Clark Academy,
we would strongly encourage you to do so! 
It is seriously a Disneyland for teachers! 
Our trip will forever be ingrained in
our minds and in our classrooms. 
Please leave them in the comments below!

Instagram Photo Challenge

Instagram Photo Challenge for April #dailyteacherlife 

Hey guys! We had such a great time checking out your #dailyteacherlife photos from March that we decided to continue in April. We simplified it to taking 3 photos a week and posting on any day of that week. Remember to use #dailyteacherlife when posting and invite teacher friends to join in on the fun!


It’s a new month, so we are so excited to post our new LINKY PARTY Blog Post…
We loved seeing the responses last month!
Our goal is to bring positivity to the classroom!
There are so many moments in our day that should be celebrated and there are so many people who make us better at our craft. Let’s recognize them!
For your “HOOT,” share an awesome moment that you have shared with your students. It can be ANYTHING that made you smile!
For your “HOLLER,” shout out to someone who made you a better teacher. It can be another teacher, a TPT author, Blogger, etc…
Help us share some awesome moments!!!
Our “HOOT”
We have enjoyed this idea so much that we decided to bring it to our classrooms! Each week, we have decided to feature a student who made our day. We use an award coupon from our “Hoot and a Holler” product that is available in our store and put their picture up. We acknowledge them in front of the class on Monday and give the reason they are getting the award. Then, we leave their award and picture up all week. They get to take home their award on Friday and we start over again the next week. This month, I decided to feature a boy who NEVER did his homework. For the past 4 weeks, we have been working sooooooo hard and I am proud to say that he has completed his homework every day for 4 weeks in a row. His award read, “Homework Hero.” You should have seen his face. His smile was one that I will never forget!!!! It made my month!
We watched a Periscope by Kelli Alaina and were truly inspired. It changed the way we think about and create TPT products. We enjoy watching her and look forward to her Scopes! Thanks!
Want to participate???? Please do!!
Simply copy this image and add a text box over it to share your experiences!
We look forward to seeing your responses!
Interested in starting “A Hoot and A Holler” in your room?
Here is an example of how we display it in our room! We got the circle board from the Dollar Spot at Target and decorated it with Neon Sharpie Paint Pens. Then we hot glued the clips to the board. Target also had some magnetic boards for another idea! The awards are available in our store, JUST CLICK HERE!
Student Awards A HOOT & A HOLLER Student Recognition

Instagram Posting in March! #dailyteacherlife

 We would love to get to know our followers!!!
Check out the Calendar below.
Let’s post a picture a day in March!
Follow along and post your pictures by using the
We’ll be posting daily and hope you join in!
Be sure to follow us on Instagram.
We will remind you what the picture for the next day is too!
We look forward to getting to know you!

A Hoot and a Holler! NEW LINKY!

Teaching is a great job and we need to celebrate the great moments! This is a place to share things that made you “HOOT” this month… like your students doing a great job during a lesson, a parent or administrator complementing you and so on. 
It is also a place to “HOLLER” and shout out to a special friend, coworker, or fellow TPTer who helped you, 
encouraged you or even just gave you a giggle. 
It is all about positivity! 
We cannot wait to hear your amazing moments!
Below, you will find the blank template to copy. 
Simply copy, insert your text in a text box over the areas, save and add to your blog! 

Currently February

Currently! February!

Hey guys! It is that time again, we are linking up with Farley from Oh Boy! for this month’s Currently!

Listening to kids running around and screaming. Not much to say on this topic…use your imagination!  πŸ™‚

Loving a new product that is currently in the works. It will be a wonderful timesaver and a great addition to my classroom reward system. Keep your eyes open… it will be done soon!

Thinking about our Southern California Blogger Tea coming up this Saturday. It is being hosted by the wonderful Katie Knight and we are so exctied to meet up with other amazing SO CAL bloggers!
Can’t wait!

Needing another dose of caffeine…needless to say that always seems to be our problem. #caffeineaddict

Swooning over the fact that we have all of next week off. Do you have next week off?

Have a great month!

Our Favorite Things About SO CAL! So Cal Blog Hop!

We LOVE SO CAL! Here’s a few of our favorite things!

We love that we are not shoveling snow in the winter, but if we wanted to, we could drive a half hour and experience it for the weekend… Warm Springs, Hot Summers, Cool Autumns and Cooler Winters. A backyard BBQ can happen all year long!
We’ve got the beach, mountains, desert and valley within a few hours drive from each other. We love vacationing to them all!

Hop on over to the next blog to check out more great things about So Cal and grab another Winter Freebie! Click the button below:

 Click here!

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