Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Back to School READY!!!

All summer long I've gone in once every two weeks or so and unpacked my room and worked on various projects.  Open House is tomorrow night, so today was THE day to finish.  I worked like a crazy person at home yesterday with a massive to-do list in preparation for today.  Here's how it all turned out :)

From my door
Usually, I just write the CW/HW/Target on the board...
but, I'm really excited about how my signs turned out :)
Jobs with 6th graders...not sure about this.  Gonna try it out.  Some jobs are specific for 1st period only (lunch count, Channel One manager) or for specific periods (calendar manager), and finally all period (supplies, paper).  I put it right next to the dry erase board so I could just write the student's name on the board...and as I write this, I've thought of a problem.  Like for all periods, how am I going to have six different names...hmmmmm, gotta think about this one some more.
I've literally never had a calendar in my classroom.  I've always thought that it is such an elementary thing.  But, with the needs of my students, I feel like I am teaching elementary...and after reading TONS of blogs, I'm feeling pretty good about that.  At my own house, I have a calendar on my fridge that I mark off each day to keep track of where we are at, and it helps my 4 year olds follow, along those lines I needed something to help my students follow along with the calendar instead of just seeing a bunch of numbers.  So, I decided I would paperclip a star to whatever day we are on.  Hopefully that will be a visual cue as to which day we are on.  I'm not big on counting straws, nor do I want to manage that (especially with so many different classes).  So, I saw on pinterest somewhere the number rings to flip.  Going to see how that goes.  I'm going to use the calendar and days in school to go along with our calendar math.
This is my newest addition to my class.  Super excited about my bright tubs which came from Big Lots, and are super durable.  I'm really going to focus this year on visual cues/reminders for students, hence the sign on the wall.  All of the composition notebooks have a sticker of varying colors to help me check quickly that the notebooks are in the right tub.  Example:  All of the ISN for 1st period has an orange sticker on the spine with packaging tape over it to ensure it stays :)   the little plastic boxes were $0.99 from Walmart and have my manipulatives for each table group.
I'm starting to implement Brummett Bucks this year as a reward system to hopefully motivate my students.  I teach special education and intervention classes, and in all honestly, these kiddos can be hard to motivate.  Hopefully this will help :)  I am using the rewards cards that I picked up in a Flash Freebie from Mandy Lopez over at   My BFF is the EBD teacher at my school.  She questioned me hard "How do they earn them?"  I felt I needed to have two categories: definite ways to earn a buck, and get caught to earn a buck.  We'll see how this goes...I've never tried anything like this before.
And, finally, two things here:  1) half a sheet of felt to use as erasers this year instead of using  I HATE that, so I vowed to come up with something else.  Luckily, the people on Pinterest are waaaay smarter than me.  That lovely idea came from Pinterest.  2) My boards were nasty (so I cleaned them) and were difficult to erase (which compounding the nastiness).  I read on, of all places, Pinterest to spray some WD-40 on each one and rub in.  It repairs the boards...we'll see how it works.  It seemed to do make erasing easier when I tried it.  My BFF's board is AW-FUL!!!  I told her about it, and we figured no harm, no foul.
Excited to start putting some faces with the names I've been reading this summer :)


Alison said...

GOOD LUCK...knock their socks off!
Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

Courtney Dimmitt said...

I'm thinking about starting jobs in my 7th grade classroom this year as well. Somewhere, I saw an idea about having students apply for jobs and filling out applications and turning in resumes. I liked that idea! I'm curious how it works out for you!

Jessica J. said...

I have the same tubs from Big Lots! I love the idea of the stickers on the side of the composition notebooks...thanks for the tip! Just a tip from me, I use old socks (that have been washed, of course) as erasers for my white boards or old towels that I will cut up. I haven't had to buy "erasers" for my white boards in quite some time! :)

Michele said...

I can't believe you are back to school already! I don't go back until September, I have to start being a little more motivated I think!
I like your interactive notebooks. I don't keep mine in the room, but I use one in Math, ELA, and SS so I have my students color the top and sides with a specified highlighter color so they can easily find them.
Best of luck for a great school year!

Coffee Cups and Lesson Plans

Erica Marshall said...

Love the decorations! I'll be doing the same thing next week in my classroom. Time has flown for me this summer. By the way, I nominated you for a Liebster Award. Go here for more information and how to "accept." It is to give new bloggers more exposure!Have fun!

Marshall in the Middle

amber said...

So jealous of your notebook bins! The blue and green would fit my classroom colors but I can never find them in my area!

Kim said...

Hi Erin!
First, I love, love, LOVE those bright bins!
Second, I have my white boards in the same plastic tub as shown in your picture. At first I thought: Why did she take a picture of my white boards?! (Sorry, my brain is still on summer mode!)
Third, your room looks ready to go! (LUCKY!)
Finally, if you don't want to cover the calendar number with a star, use a "ring" (circle with the middle cut out). Sometimes my kids couldn't figure out what was behind the star!
Happy New School Year...

Finding JOY in 6th Grade

Viva said...

Hi Erin!
I love your blog! You have so many great ideas and a wonderful classroom set up :) I have nominated you for a Liebster Award :) I look forward to seeing what you do over the school year!


~The STEM Inquirer~

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