Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Classroom Prep

I had every intention of being super productive over the weekend, but a nap happened instead.  (We spent most of Sunday visiting B's aunt who had surgery yesterday, so I in no way feel bad about that.)

Here's where I'm at in terms of classroom set up.  Our official first day back is this Wednesday, but since I'm still not 100%, I needed extra time.

The classroom itself...

B was kind enough to come in on Friday afternoon and help move furniture.  He even helped the teacher next door, which just solidifies that he's a stand up fellow.

I have all of my bookcases along one wall and really like how the room feels open.  Granted, it's easy to feel open when I'm the only one in the room.  My two wardrobes line the back wall near the kidney table.  The long, rectangular space will be our classroom meeting space for read alouds.

Command station...

I try to set up a command station for my students to be self-sufficient.

I've found the easiest space is right inside the classroom door.  It's not complete yet (because I can't find my electronic pencil sharpeners) but it's getting there.

The teal crate is where students will get back their returned papers.  I haven't put names on tabs yet because my roster keeps changing.  The sharp & not sharp pencil buckets are this {freebie from TpT} attached to dollar store polka dotted bins. 

The Batman cup will hold pens for the bathroom sign out, which will also be found here.  Inside the desks will be where I keep my Lakeshore {privacy screens} for testing times.

The football holds my keys, the open library pass, and my simplified version of brag tags.  The black lanyards are my "math coach" badges for students to be clearly identified as helpers.  The other lanyards say "ask me about the goal I met today" to encourage praise from others about growth.  I have two other Reading Ranger lanyards (our zone's reading program) that I'm going to transform into graduate and half-graduate brag tags.

My desk space...

I've decided this is one of the few areas that I will let be "cute" and decorated.  Most of the classroom is bare because I fill the walls with activities or charts that the students and I make together.

The bulletin boards...

I have three: one outside and two inside.

The outside board isn't quite done.  I'm finalizing the sign that says "writers on the move" on white and red chevron print paper.

The border is made up of overlapping post cards.  

I was given them by a friend and had way too many, so I donated the extras to friends in kindergarten to use as a writing center.

I changed my mind about the inside boards (naturally), but here they are:

My Reading Ranger Board

It's an expectation that we have a board set aside to Reading Rangers.

I've included graduation tickets (I assume we're doing them again, they were very successful last year), graduation expectations, and the key for how book colors correspond with ZPD ranges.  

The white board will say "under five" club and students will place a clothespin (with their names) on it when they're close to graduating.  I saw something similar in another room, so I'm going to give it a try.

The rest of the board will have printed out badge reports for my students (I think) or some similar data display.

Underneath is where I have my 3 drawer tubs of math supplies, construction and lined paper, extra supplies, clipboards, etc.  To the right of this board is our 8 math practices, another {freebie} from TpT.

The other board

This one will display anchor charts that we've used in (and made) in class.  I originally snagged these gray tubs at Joann's for the purpose of supply table buckets, but I think I'd rather use them for books.  

We're picking up another black organizer this afternoon and then these will be filled with books.  The black storage racks will line up with the bookcases to have a room bursting at the seams with books (no apologies).

I've also hung my chart about {responding cups} at the front of the room on one side of the white board.  The nearby white board contains my never ending classroom to do list.

The other side...

Is where I have a classroom motivator (10 10's in specials leads to a 10 minute recess, which is a free and healthy reward), a class sign, and where I'll (theoretically) post our standards.

The white board (lined in burlap) is where I'll put our class daily schedule.  

Instead of using a bulletin board for our class business, I decided to put everything on the white board behind my desk.

I'll have their GATE/TAGS schedule, specials schedule, and other need to know forms up front for easy access.


Business Cards
I've redone my business cards to include my new last name.  I'll be printing them on pink card stock and laminating them for parents.  I intentionally didn't include my classroom work number because I don't like answering the phone nor do I like listening to messages.  I know I have to include the phone number on my class welcome letter, but that doesn't mean I have to include it on my polka dot business cards:

Like them? They were free and you can snag them {here}.  Just be sure to leave the creator nice feedback.  The shop also has some colorful options if black & white isn't your thing.

I've also already made a lot of copies...and had a fight with the copier.

Half Grads

I made a half grad sheet last year, but don't love it.

So I redid it! 


Then I tweaked it for fellow teachers to fit their classroom themes:

Today's agenda? 

I've got a planning meeting with the other coaches this am, another visit to the ENT, and then a planning session with Mrs. H at school.  B is coming in to help this afternoon and then we're going out to dinner.

My goal is to have my classroom be totally done tomorrow so I can focus on planning and copies on Thursday.

Less than a week 'til I meet students!


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