Last month I received an email from The Mailbox Magazine asking me to participate in their #BeTheDifference sweepstakes. I was thrilled and honored at receiving this invitation because I "grew up" as a teacher reading this fabulous publication. The Mailbox magazine was there before Pinterest, blogs and TpT. It was THE one stop shop for finding ideas for your classroom. I remember as a new teacher checking the library out each month for the newest edition. I always wanted to get my hands on it first! On the weekends I would take home all the back issues and spend hours reading and making plans to copy all the wonderful activities that were included. Hence my excitement about being asked to participate in this great #BeTheDifference movement.
I was excited about the invitation, but I was even more thrilled when The Mailbox magazine sent me a box of goodies in the mail! My girls were even excited to find out what was inside.
Isn't that just the cutest box?!
Here's what I found.
You can't really see, but there was a pencil, flashdrive, and a beach ball inside the box. Everything was wrapped up so special. Loved everything about it! There was also a card inside explaining the #BeTheDifference movement. Here's a quote from the card that really got my attention: "AS A TEACHER, we know you wake up early, work all day, and stay up late planning for the next day. It's finally time to "show-and-tell" about all the hard work you do!" They get it. They know and understand what teachers do everyday and they RECOGNIZE it too.
So what is the #BeTheDifference movement all about? Well, to start with, the contents of my box were especially chosen by The Mailbox with one thing in mind, memories. Back to school memories. The Mailbox knows just how important those first few days are for establishing routines and procedures, making special memories, and forming bonds with our new students. They know how hard we work to plan for those days so that we can make wonderful memories for our students. Memories that will stay for a long time. Memories that will make a difference. The Mailbox wants teachers to go out and "BeTheDifference" in our classrooms this year.
How did I make a memories on the first day of school? I used a beach ball! During our morning meeting time, we used the beach ball to introduce ourselves and tell what our favorite things were. My first graders loved it! They loved everything about passing and tossing the ball to their new classmates. We learned how to work together, listen, speak, and share all in one simple little activity. I got to set the tone for our class and our classroom expectations in a fun and engaging way. And, they got to get up and move! I was thrilled that I got to "#BeTheDifference" on their first day of first grade.
We have the awesome ability to impact our students each and every day. Our first job is to teach them everything that our curriculum demands. But we also know that our job goes way beyond that. We know that there are so many other things we teach them as well. We teach them to be bucket fillers, to accept diversity, and to find the good in what we have around us. We set out to inspire those who may not have the hope to see that they can achieve anything they want. We have the power to #BeTheDifference. Please join me in this wonderful movement as we all begin a fresh, new year together. Challenge yourself this year to #BeTheDifference with your students, your colleagues, and your community.
Tell me how you are going make a difference this year. I would love to know! Leave a comment below and I will reward 1 winner with $10 to spend in my TpT store. I will choose a winner next Friday.