Thursday, July 31, 2014

New Classroom Tour!

3 weeks, countless hours and many rearrangements later, I have finally "finished" getting my new 2nd grade classroom ready for the new school year.  Of course, we all know that we are never really finished!  Today was our first official work day, and open house is tomorrow evening.  I have not yet finished perfecting my area of the room, and curriculum has barely been looked at, but I still have the weekend and Monday and Tuesday of next week to get that done before my little ones are officially mine!

I have always wanted to be a 2nd grade teacher.  It is a year of such joy and excitement.  I can't wait to get this year started.  I have a LOT of ideas, I'm going to stray from the curriculum after I get adjusted to the kids' ability levels and plan on doing a lot of interactive notebooking.

Here are a few pictures of my classroom as of today...  Enjoy and let me know what you think!

These are my Vocabulators, 2 glitter calm down bottles and my
cute little monthly themed writing centers.
My library is about as good as it's going to get before open house.  I need to
put labels on the book bins and fill up the other book shelf, but it can wait.
My small group table.  I put it in front of my literacy focus wall.  
Close-up of my literacy focus wall.  I just stuck those posters up
there to get the spacing right.  You can get my focus wall headers
in my Teachers Pay Teachers store here.
These are the curtains I made into a valance a few years ago.  I only used
4 single panels, 1 of each color, cut them in half and HOT GLUED
them together!  I don't know how to sew so that was my only option,
but it has held up great for 4 years now
Another little nook under my cabinets.  I'm still finding places for things,
so please ignore the randomness of this shelf!  But, don't you LOVE
the 1, 2, 3 bins I found at IKEA!?
Old discarded keyboards that I let the kids practice typing their
spelling words on.  The rack was left in my room from a retired
teacher, and I couldn't find any games that fit it, so this worked
out perfectly.  They were made for each other!
A view from next to my desk out across the classroom.  I just love how
bright the yellow bulletin boards make the room.
A small collection of cute little owls!  In real life, birds of all types
terrify me.  They are so erratic and fly at people and cars!  No thank you!
The view from my small group area across the room.  I love that beautiful
atrium view.  Totally makes up for the weird layout of the room.
Small group supplies.
Writing center that is not completely ready, but looks good for open house.
My teacher tool box and some small trinkets.  I made tool boxes for
two of my friends this year for Christmas, too!

Friday, July 25, 2014

I am back!

Wow, it has been an embarrassingly long time since my last post!  I am going to try to get back on the ball here!  I am gearing up for the new school year.  I have moved to 2nd grade this year, which was always my dream!!  I have been working hard on my new classroom and getting materials prepared for my new adventure.  I have an awesome team and I am beyond excited to get this year started!

I have created a BUNCH of new Teachers Pay Teachers products!  Since I live in Florida, and we are opting out of Common Core, my materials are currently geared toward the Math and Language Arts Florida Standards.  I am considering going in and fixing small details about my standards checklists and the growth matrix I made so that it will appeal to a larger audience.  Honestly, the only real differences is in the numbering and maybe the wording of about 4 standards.

I really want to show some of the awesome things I came up with last year, but just didn't seem to find time to share.  I created the CUTEST candy themed bulletin board in October to go along with my "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" book study (and halloween)! 

Simpson's Sweets!  I made up those character trait wheels with
spaces for pictures and written descriptions.
These sweet candies are paper places from Walmart, iridescent 
cello wrap from Hobby Lobby and some ribbon.
The lollipop kids were a bit harder.  For the sticks, I painted
wooden dowel rods white and then rolled them in glitter.

 For Dr. Seuss, we read "Oh the Places You'll Go", wrote about our goals for the future, and CREATED PAPER MACHE HOT AIR BALLOONS!  With the help of a throw away plastic table cloth, the mess was minimal and the finished products looked AWESOME hanging from the classroom ceiling!  Plus, I painted a science project board to look like a basket and rigged up a hot air balloon photo booth!

My homemade photo booth.  The kids had fun with it.

Those are the two biggies that stand out in my mind as the most fun and whimsical projects we completed.

I'll be back soon with pictures of my NEW classroom!