Tuesday, August 13, 2013

A peek in my room on the eve before the first day!

Well this is it.  I'm as prepared as I'm going to be!  My room is as done as it can be!  My sweet first graders will come tomorrow for their first day!  I'm very excited to get to know them and begin this journey with them.

Here's a peek into my room as I left it today -

A view from the doorway into my room....on the opposite wall you will see my word wall and my schedule

Our carpet for carpet time with my chair and circus wall

My "messy" corner of centers storage and outdoor play toys along with our
Juggling Jobs clown

My boys' and girls' restroom with our library in between.  A few of our first days books are on top of the library with SkippyJon for now.

Each bucket in our library has a different type of duct tape on it.  Each book in that bucket also has the same strip of duct tape across the spine.  This enables my student whose job is librarian to know which bucket to put the books in.  

More of our library...

An example of a bucket with the strip of duct tape

The left front of my room with student boxes, centers trays, color words and our Whole Brain rules

The board area of our room

My agenda board with our essential questions and objectives as well as my teaching table

Looking back at the door into the hall with our 200 chart, shapes and number words

My data wall to hold student benchmark scores as well as goals and "Did we meet our goals?" information.  Please excuse my mess under the board.  Some are my items and some are supplies but those desks will hold my student netbooks when we receive them later this week.

Well I better get to finishing up my last minute things so that I can go to bed.  I hope I can sleep!  Can you sleep on the night before school?  I'm always SOOOO excited and nervous that it's hard to actually rest!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

More back to school planning!!

I think I may have finally figured out my centers dilemma.  Whew, I had so overthought (is that a word?) the whole process.  Tonight, feeling overwhelmed by my large number of students and my even longer "to do" list, my brain shut down and I just began to click through old blogs and links that I had saved from years gone by.  On the second link, I came across a page on centers.  I think it was an answer to prayer! Here it is if you are interested - Mrs. Mcdowell.

I'm not going to share her chart here because that would be "plagiarizing" but basically she suggests only 3 rotations a day - me, centers, seatwork.  This will give me eight students at each rotation and since they work in pairs, there will be four groups in centers at a time.

SO....for my class of 24 students, I will have 8 working with me, 8 working with partners on seatwork, and 8 in centers.  We will have three rotations of 20 minutes each (actually around 18 minutes with 2 minutes to move about the room).

Since there are five days in a week that we will be doing centers, I will need five centers (the other way I had planned 9 centers each week - YAY for extras!).

My five centers are as follows -
1.  Bump/Scoot Game
2. Computer time
3.  ELA center
4.  Math center
5.  Writing center

I feel so much better about all of it!

I also worked on desk name plates today.  I often have my kids work in pairs and also in teams of 3.  Last year I felt grouping 3 confused some of my kids because they weren't sure who to group with.  This year, I have a plan!

On their nameplate, each child will have a color and a shape at the end.  This child is a member of the purple pair and the triangle group.  Each member will be at the same table sitting next to each other but this will show him to speak to if I say "color group chat" or "shape group chat".

How do you do centers?  How do you group students for class chats?

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Class Lists, Meet & Greet, and a GIVEAWAY

A while back I had received what I thought was my class list.....it had 23 kids on it....I was 
shocked and stressed to have so many firsties.  Since then, I've seen that lots of you
have that many or more on your lists.  After receiving my first list, my class grew to 26, and then to "too many kids to have in one class" so now they have taken back my list as they sort through exactly what to do with my sweeties.  

Tomorrow I get my class list AND tomorrow I meet my babies for the first time.  I hope that somewhere in there I have time to put their names on something.....at least one thing before they come in.  I have never in my 13 years of teaching had to do it so last minute but if it keeps me from having 26 or more kids I'm all for it.

Tonight at midnight, my giveaway ends so be sure to check it out here!!  

 Thanks for stopping by!!  

Friday, August 2, 2013

One year and 100 followers later.....GIVEAWAY!!!

Last year on August 1, I started this little blog as a way
to journal my thoughts on teaching and my classroom.  It has also
become a way for me to connect with other teachers to share ideas.

I think it's so neat that I hit 100 followers just last week as I 
neared my one year anniversary of blogging.  In order to celebrate both
milestones, I have put together this little giveaway.  

Here's a look at our fabulous prizes!!  
(Clicking the picture will take you to their blogs.)

Good luck!!!  

a Rafflecopter giveaway