Friday, September 2, 2011

First Day is just around the corner!

We had Open House on Thursday and I got to meet 10 of my 26 children. Turn-out wasn't so great for my class but the school as a whole got a lot of families. I am now officially nursing 24-hour stomach butterflies and self doubt. I am really excited to get started but I always get so nervous the weekend before school starts. Our classes are overflowing and we will be hiring an additional 2nd grade teacher after school starts. The principal is in the process now but not having much luck. Anyone need a job? We need another teacher! I know 26 doesn't seem like a lot, but the other second grade classes are sitting at 27 and 28 and we have a K-2 incentive grant that requires our class sizes to be 24 or less students. Unless she wants to give back all the money they give us, she will hire another teacher. 

Because I think I'm finally finished (or as close to it as I'll ever be) here are my most recent classroom photos. I finally got all my flamingo curtains up and bulletin boards covered. Although I am pretty crafty, bulletin boards are my least favorite things ever, so don't expect anything fabulous in that department.

 I know it's far away, but the curtains are bright green with pink flamingos. The book displays will be where students can put their finished stories from Writer's Workshop.

 The posters on the cabinet doors are my CAFE boards. The rainbow is a project I did with my first ever class. That group "graduated" from elementary school last year and are now starting middle school :(. I can't wait to get my first graduation invitations! Anyway, we made it as a team-building activity and my favorite use for it is to cover up unsightly storage on top of the cabinets :P.

 Ready for Open House. It's hard to see, but the Promethean just has some things I wanted the kids to find in the the room and reminders for parents to take the emergency packets home with them.

Behavioropoly freshly printed, laminated, and magnetized. (Adapted from Ladybug's Homeworkopoly)

Word Word station. Notice the Math Power Towers and Word Power Towers from 

 Hallway display. Each child has a "Best Work" poster where they can put up their favorite projects or work they are proud of. Sometimes I choose what goes up as a class and sometimes I let them choose something they would like to display.

 I like to have the kids sign in when they come to Open House. It's pretty self-explanatory but gives me a lot of information (their favorite color, handwriting, directionality, if they can recognize friends' names, etc.)

This is how I will display our specials for the week (we call them Encore). Each  Encore sign is velcro-ed to the board and can be moved if the rotation is changed due to a short week or snow day. In the past, I put all the signs together on a ring and just flip the card each morning but I like that the kids can see what they will have each day and know when to bring sneakers for PE or to not wear fancy clothes for Art.

This is my Daily 5 check-in poster. It isn't in comission yet since I only have room for 24-25 names and I have more than that. I also have to dig the rest of the icons out of the closet or wherever I stored them for the move. The plan is that at first, I will place all their icons and check-in will be to discuss the last rotation and confirm where students will go next. Then gradually, I will give more and more choice as I see they are ready for it, and we will do an official check-in less often. In the end, I will place their reading group icon and they will fill in their choices for the day as part of the morning routine. But that's WAAAYYY ahead of me. At this point, I am most concerned about making sure my kids go home on the correct mode of transportation.

1 comment:

  1. Ah, there is always so much to think about this time of year!

    My school must get the same grant because we've been in the same position before, having to hire after school starts.

    We start on the 12th, and I have been debating on whether to do a chart for Daily 5 or not (this will be my 1st year trying it). I like your idea of starting with one, and then giving them choices later.

    Drooling over your Promethian and cabinets!

    I am EXHAUSTED from setting my room up and going to meetings! It is always such an adjustment. I hope that you are able to get some rest this weekend!