Sunday, August 31, 2014

Currently September!

September is here and while for many school will be starting this week, I've been on the ground running with students since August 13. Without further ado, here's my addition to the September Currently linky by Farley at Oh Boy 4th Grade

Tomorrow, I've got to email my weekly newsletter to my parents, decide on a new desk arrangement and accompanying seating chart, and wash clothes. Speaking of clothes, I wear khakis pretty much every day and mine have just about had it. I need to head to our school uniform supplier in town and get some.

I have more than 1500 books in my classroom library collection. Because of the orientation of my room now, I haven't been able to bring them all back to school. Last week, I ordered a double sided book cart that was on sale at Really Good Stuff for 50% off! It's at the post office waiting for me! I wish I would have made it back from school Friday in time to check the mail and get it.

My 3 trips: Nebraska because members of my family settled there back in the early 1900's before moving to Louisiana, NYC just to see the big city and bright lights, and Colorado because I'd like the chance to see some real snow. This southern girl has seen snow, but not REAL snow!

Hope everyone has a safe and blessed Labor Day holiday and best wishes to those starting school this week!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Classroom Setup 2014 Part 3

The first 3 days of the school year have passed and I'm enjoying a nice Sunday doing some school work while washing clothes. I didn't have picture earlier to show how my desks are arranged, but now I do! Take a look.

My largest class has 18 students, so I made two rows of 9. I like this desk arrangement for several reasons. First all of my students are facing the front of the classroom. This is great since I use my projector for a lot of different things during the day. Secondly, it makes it very easy for students to find or be assigned a partner. I do have odd numbered rows, so there is one group of three students that are paired together in each. I can also have students in the front row turn around and pair up with the student directly behind them in the back row. 

This seating arrangement also allows for lots of movement. I am able to visit students without running into chairs, desks, or students. Students are able to move about the classrooms easily as well as long as they remember to push their chairs! Passing papers is a breeze with this setup as well.

Some teachers prefer to put their student desks in groups of 4 or more. I have in the past tried such a seating arrangement, but had little success. Some students had to turn their body to face the front of the classroom which made it difficult if they needed to write something down. Another problem that I discovered was that students were able to communicate with each other during times when that would not be appropriate.

We started using Power Pix during our first few days so I'll post soon showing our wall for those. I'm working on the slow reveal of the SIW and will begin using it this week. I'll try to remember to take some pictures of that to share as well! 

Hope everyone has a great upcoming week!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

First Day of 2014-15 Year!

Today was our first day of school, and things went great! We had a full day, so I was able to meet with both of my 3rd grade classes. For those interested, here's a list of Whole Brain Teaching pieces we covered.

5 Rules with gestures
It's cool!
3-peats for: Papers, Lines, Bodies Up (one group)
Ten finger woo (one group)

Amazing to think we got all that in plus PE, lunch, recess (I had duty!), sorting of supplies, and a slightly earlier end of day dismissal to ensure students got on the correct buses! Don't get me wrong, we do have some practicing to do with our rules recall as well as other procedures, but it's a good start.

I'm tired and I'd bet that some of my students are, too. No time to rest - I've got 34 notebooks tape the spirals on and that's just the first section!

Saturday, August 2, 2014

August Currently

August is here and school is less than a week away! Let's get to Farley's Augustly Currently!

Louisiana has a two day tax free holiday to help with back to school purchases. That along with B2S sales has helped me get some things I needed.  My room is almost ready but I still have some prep work to do with lessons and tests. I'm holding off on finishing labels for some pocket charts, desks and files because two students registered last week. All my cubbies are full and so is the extra shelf I set up, so any more students and I'm not sure where I'll put their belongings!

My WBT Wednesday post for this week will be made next week. A board in my classroom was painted to refresh the dry erase surface so I couldn't do some things I needed for that post. Next week will be the final review of my completed room before parent orientation on the 7th!