I'm still playing a LOT of catch up, but I thought that I would take a little time out today to give you guys a quick tour of my classroom from last year.
The first thing that I did differently is that I decided to start the year with my students in groups. I HATE chaos so I wanted to expedite and organize the process as much as humanly possible.
I decided that each group needed to have their own bins, trash cans, and name/number.
Target was having a college back to school sale and I was able to get the drawers for a good deal with free shipping!
I found these little trash can bins at the Dollar Tree, and they worked out great. It minimized the need for students to get up and wander the room to look for the "Trashcan"
I also got the picture frame holders from the Dollar Tree as well to hold each group's name sign (another post will be coming about that soon).
Inside the top drawer of each group I had a supply bin. Each bin had:
- 3 pairs of scissors
- Box of Crayons
- Box of colored pencils
- Box of markers
- 3 Glues
- 3 Purple pens (for correcting)
- Mini stapler
- Handheld pencil sharpener
- Post its
I printed a list of the items that were supposed to be in the bins on sticky paper and stuck it to the bins. Each Friday I checked the bins and the groups that had all their supplies (and were organized) got a small treat.
This idea of mine actually failed, but if I had thought it through more it would have worked.
I bought a hanging clothes rack and sweater holders and I planned to used them to hold the students journal and class notebooks.
Each class had their own notebook (sweater) holder and each group had a hole within that holder.
On the way into class one student from each group would just grab their group's notebooks and head to their group's desks.
The clothes holder that I bought wasn't sturdy enough to hold the weight of the notebooks.
However, I believe that if I had just anchored the clothes holder to the wall using string and command hooks we would have been in business!
I found some fun giraffe fabric at Walmart, a mini expandable curtain rod, and clip on shower curtain hooks and used it to make my own classroom curtain. When we had lock downs I could just lower the curtain to cover the window.
I kept my same classroom rules system going since it worked so well the last 3 years.
Read more here:
I always keep a supply table of extra supplies, tissues, pencil sharpener, stapler, etc...
I ask that kids not interrupt when they need something, just quietly go over to the supply table and get what is needed. I especially love my Paper Pots! I use toilet paper instead of tissues because teenagers to not understand portion control when it comes to tissues...and tissues are not cheap my friends!
Look at the Amazon items I mentioned in this post at the bottom of the page.
I kept my same classroom board system going since it worked so well the last 3 years.
Read more here:
My classroom jobs worked the same way the old ones did, I just changed out some of the jobs.
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I like my school supplies and I like my space.
My little area each year becomes my own little oasis.
I used a hanging clothes rack (again) and shoe organizers to hold a lot of my school supplies where I could see them. I took this picture when I was still in the organizing phase so it is not fully realized yet ;)
I still LOVE my wine rack turned pen holder. It is probably my favorite project of all time.
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I still have all of my supplies and binders in a book shelf next to my desk....this makes me happy!
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Each year on the first day of school I do my Learning Styles Prezi
After we do the prezi, students are given an colored index card (color depending on what class they are in) and they are asked to write their name artistically and draw things on their card that relate to their learning style. We then glue the cards to big posters displaying each learning style.
Not only do I (and everyone else) get to see how many students are each type of learning style, but since I color code the cards by class I am able to see what the majority of each class's learning style is also!
Here is an older version of this project so you can visualize it:
Extreme Desk Makeover
Yes, I decorated my desk in duck tape....and yes it is fabulous!
Read about it here:
Vista Print Banner
Besides my wine rack turned pen holder, this is probably my other favorite thing in my classroom.
I had a banner made at Vista Print with my name and owls...You can't go wrong there can you?
I hope you liked my tour of last year's classroom (almost an entire year late)!
I'll be back soon to talk about how I did my classroom groupings!