October 20, 2015

My Happy Little Classroom: A Tour

It's August and my classroom just got a "mini makeover" of sorts. I posted this same post last October, and the pictures were...scary.  I loved my little classroom, but I didn't realize how haphazard certain areas were looking!  So this summer (the first time I had time), I really did some overhaul and took new pictures.  I am not going to post the before/after side by sides because, well, it just isn't that big of a deal.  Let me just say that my pictures aren't going to rival some classrooms I've seen on Pinterest.  I'm okay with that.  I like my classroom a lot.  In fact, I happen to love it.  I love the bright colors, and the fact that it didn't all come straight from a store.  I love that when I look around the room, it feels like a place my students and I have built together.  That makes me happy!  It's not fancy, but it's ours.  We think it's pretty great!

Right inside my door sits my student folder basket where students place their take-home folders each morning so that I can check them for notes.   Also, my dismissal clip chart, my line order and student job chart (currently missing since it's summer, and the clips are hanging out on the dismissal chart), some fun good-bye's for dismissal, transition task cards from Miss Kindergarten Love, and our library and lunch card basket.  The black shelf underneath is where I have students place lunch boxes and I put snacks that students bring for the day.

Right next to that are our box cubbies and our Rainbow Word bulletin board.  My Write the Room station basket and clipboards for the stations sit on top.  To the left is my rolling cart that holds our BUILD math stations.

On the other side of the doorway are our hallway chants, emergency procedures (on bulletin board), Literacy Station and BUILD Math Station rotation pocket chart, our early finisher tubs, also from Miss Kindergarten.  The cubbies underneath hold our writing journals, math journals, and take-home folders during the day.  The shelves to the right hold all our math manipulative tubs, puzzles, and games. You can spot our handy glue sponges stacked up high.  We love those things!

Straight in from the door is our classroom carpet area.  Our rules and our carpet listening expectations hang next to my teacher chair.  I use my teacher cart to store ALL THE THINGS.  We start each day with morning meeting at the carpet and we also gather here for stories, songs, math lessons, and many other games and activities.  I love carpet time!  At the back of our carpet, the orange table you see is our VIP table. The stadium shelf holds our theme books for the next week or two, and our block center drawers are also located here.  

I do my Word Wall a little differently than most.  I modeled it after No More Letter of the Week.  I DO teach Letter of the Week, because we use Saxon Phonics and it introduces a letter a week.  I should say that even though I do Letter of the Week, we are, of course, doing TONS of whole language activities all the time.  I have one student per letter who is the "Letter Expert."  They teach us about that letter and bring something from home that starts with the letter.  The Kinders LOVE this!

Our Writing Station is next to our carpet area, and storage drawers help keep papers organized.   My little orange pocket chart holds cards for different activities, such as Deedee Wills' Writing Station activities, which I LOVE.     

This awesome loft was built for me by an AMAZING dad of a former student who I am forever grateful for.  It freed up so much room in my classroom!  It houses my Reading Station.  Underneath is my Dramatic Play Station.

Here is our calendar wall where we gather for calendar and other SmartBoard activities. Pardon that beautiful power strip and the darkness of this photo.  The long table to the left is my "iPad" center and I also use it to teach when I use my iPad document camera.

I got rid of my teacher desk the first day I moved into this building.  I use my teacher table for my desk.  How often are we really sitting in Kindergarten anyway?  I just did these awesomely organized colored drawers using a little spray paint and scrapbook paper and it has made me so much happier!

And here are some cabinets and my Paint Station and my microwave.  On top of that counter are my blue tubs where I organize daily plans and work.   You can also see my clip chart.  GASP! I know, a clip chart.  Rest assured, I use it to build up and not to break down! It works for me!  

To the left of all this is my sink, my bathroom, and my Fine Motor station (sand table).  I use the small student desks for play dough, or if needed, extra space during literacy stations. 

So that's that!  If you stayed with me through all that rambling, you deserve a gold star.  If you have any questions, or there was something you wanted to see but didn't, or you need a close-up, just leave me a comment!   

October 14, 2015

Happy Birthday to Me! Here's a Gift for YOU!

Hey y'all! It's my birthday and that makes me feel like giving!

I LOVE spending my birthday with my Kinders at school.  It's one of my favorite days of the year.  This year we celebrated with donuts!  I also wanted to do something a little bit different, because I turned the big 3-0 today.  So last night I came up with this activity to do today where we broke down my age!

It was so fun to see how old they thought I was!  You might want to make sure to remind them to make SMALL tally marks though.  Next, we flipped the paper over and they wrote what they wished they could gift me for my birthday.  This was the sweetest!  My plan is to make a class book and keep it forever and ever, because I am a crazy hoarder when it comes to sweet mementos from students!


If you are a Miss, a Ms., or a Mr. do not fret!  I included pages with your title and pronouns as well. :)  Click the picture below to download and I hope you enjoy! Have the happiest of birthdays on your day!  How do you celebrate with your class?

October 3, 2015

Happy October FREEBIE!

Because it's my birthday month and because I love ya, I am posting a freebie!  I just finished a new file yesterday for my store, and this freebie is from that file.  I hope that you find it useful in your classroom! Click the image below to download.  Happy fall!

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