Sunday, August 23, 2015

Sunday Rewind - Classroom Reveal 2015

Week one - only two days with kiddos - is done! Here are a few pics of my classroom. Love all things owls and blue. Enjoy!

 Writing bulletin board.  Very easy to see if any are missing!  Love the owls border and names.

 Math manipulatives and Ipad station.

 Setting up for Work Work. Daily Five begins next week.

 Tossed out my desk.  This is now my teacher corner.  So much more roomy.  I try to keep the table clear for small groups etc.  I have M - F bins for stashing all the papers,  books, and activities for a week at a time.  The binders hold units and instructional materials.

 Document camera and projector along with my supply cart.  Keeps the things I use most at my fingertips.

 Book bins labeled with kids names.  Time to get Read to Self started.  Excited for Daily Five to begin.

 Overview from the back of the room.

 Large chart paper and large pocket chart for fluency activities.

 My favorite corner of the entire room - my classroom library.  The books are sorted by genre and type:  ex:  Cats,  NF Animals, Fic Animals, Fly Guy... You get the idea.  I made the decision not to sort by AR levels however mosts of the books have AR information on them.

 Owl Word Wall - waiting for all those sight words we learn in first grade.

 Writing bulletin board

 Rocking Chair for story time and carpet activities

 Student Cubbies

 Added Clips to label student cubbies - so easy to move them if needed.  No goo or residue to clean off the wood.

 View from the front door.

Calendar - needs a couple for items to be complete.

Well we are off to a great start.  I wish for each of you a wonderful school year full of learning!!!

Clara ~ Teaching 365

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Saturday Rewind - Back to School We Go!

Where did the summer go?  Yep it's gone.  
I must confess though that I love my routines. 
 I have a school year routine and a summer routine.  
The problems start when I try to mix the two!!! 

 I am blessed to be starting the school year with lower numbers of first graders this year.  Can I get an Amen! 
 I am excited to have a new group for first graders 
to play and learn with.  

I try to remind myself constantly that I don't need to have the whole year planned out - 
just the first couple of weeks. My awesome teaching partner and I met and  mission accomplished!  We choose some great picture books to pair with beginning of school activities to get the year started on a positive note.  Looking forward to it.
Like most of you, I have been getting my classroom ready for the new school year. I moved into a portable classroom last year and the storage options have been 
challenging to say the least.

 I have bulletin boards up with clean, crisp, shades of blue fabric.  I know, I know.  Many people use paper, but I just love the fabric - no ripping and it can be used more than more year.  If I find a fabric piece I love I keep it in the rotation. To add a bit of freshness, I changed out all the borders this year.

This year I am going with owls and dots theme.  While not everything will be covered in owls, I do like to include a little cuteness to start the new year.  I went with a color theme of shades of blue with a little green and yellow thrown in for good measure. I am hoping for a calm feeling in the room for my 21 firsties (and me).

One plus of the portable classroom is that it is more of a rectangle than a square.  I have 3 distinct areas in the room for great learning to occur. I love the gathering area with a colorful literacy rug where we will 
spend lots of time learning together. 
I love the smell of freshly cleaned carpet.

The second area, the middle of the classroom, is a desk area.  I have the desks in long rectangles that will mimic tables. This allows each student to have a personal space with room for their many supplies and belongings.  It is also where direct instruction takes place and I can use the document camera and presenter to model concepts and provide demonstrations for my kiddos.

The third area is a small group, intervention area with a reading table.  I took the plunge (again) and had them get rid of my teacher's desk.  It makes the whole area roomy and open. This back corner of the room also houses my bookcase filled with binders and teaching manuals as well as my filing cabinet.

I am looking forward to the new year and am blessed to return to the job I love.  Here's wishing all of you a great start to your new school year.

Pictures coming soon:)

~ Clara @ Teaching 365

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Sunday Rewind: It's A Wrap - Open House

This is that time of year when I wonder how I will ever make it to the end of the year.  Yes there are only a few days left in the school year - we are in the teens right now.  To get there however there is a long list of things to accomplish and check off that giant teacher to do list we all have.  

This last week was a big one - Open House.  In my district, this is a time when we invite all the parents, all the children, and potential future parents to tour our school and our classrooms.  This calls for all hands on deck and every nook and cranny to be tip-top, decorated and organized to the ninth degree.  

So here are a few pics of my classroom so you can share in this experience.
I do my best to have something from each curriculum area on display,
but there is just so much wall that you can plaster with kids projects.  

After the walls are covered, I put everything else on their desks.

This year was stressful because just as I was leaving to drive back to school for the big night, it started pouring rain.  Yikes!  I am going with "all is well that ends well".  AND. IT. DID.  I made it through the night and even managed to make it to work the next day.

Enjoy this photo tour through my first grade class and know that summer is just around the corner - time to refresh and rekindle and get ready to do it all again another year!

Geometry - Plane Shapes with marshmallows and toothpick.  
Our big buddies came and helped with this project.

 Science and Language Arts - We read Frog and Toad Stories.  
Then we planted our own seeds and learned about the life cycle of plants.  

 We raised ladybugs and watched them progress through the larva, pupa, and adult stages.  
We let them go on the rose bushes at the park next door on Friday. 

 We wrote letters to the next year's first graders.  They shared their memories of first grade and things to look forward to.  And yes... they did type all that themselves - A huge jump from the beginning of the year when they could barely type their own names correctly!

We wrote acrostic poems about ladybugs and made tulip art 
from tissue paper for the cover of our poems.

Poetry in a Jar - The students read poetry, picked a favorite, and then illustrated the poem by adding items into a jar.  We will do oral presentations of these projects to our parents next week.

Well there you have  it!  It's a wrap.