Ever wonder what it's like spending 7 hours a day with twenty four 10 year olds? This is a peek into my every day life teaching 4th grade. A place for me to share lessons, tell funny stories and hopefully...inspire.
This upcoming school year (after much thought) I am deciding to go deskless. *GASP*
1. The desk is HUGE, therefore it takes up a ton of space.
2. My computer is on a smaller table, so the desk is not needed for that.
3. My desk just collected junk and was never very organized.
4. I want more space.
5. Let's be serious, how often do you find yourself sitting at your desk???? NEVER.
No desk means my kidney reading table will be taking on more responsibilities. I plan on moving it up to the front where my desk used to be. That leaves the entire back of the classroom open and available for more reading nooks or places to accommodate the Daily Five and my math rotations.
The only time I really sit at my desk is to correct papers, check emails or meet with students. All of these tasks can be completed at my reading table instead.
Where am I going to keep all of the supplies that were in my desk? I thought you'd never ask. I perused Pinterest for space saving organizational tips and was inspired to put my own twist on a combination of a few ideas. Here is what I came up with.
I started with an over the door clear plastic shoe organizer. You can find it super cheap at Walmart.
And with a little patience, duct tape, chalk and construction paper, I turned it into an over the door supply organizer.
It was tough to get a good picture without the glare of the plastic, but you get the idea.
This will be way more functional and space saving than my giant desk (or so I hope).
I won't lie, I'm a little apprehensive to go "deskless" but I figure the only way to find out if it will work, is to try! Here goes nothing.
I (and many other fabulous teachers at my school) use the bucket filler system to reinforce positive and encouraging interactions among students. Not familiar with bucket fillers? Check out their website.
I introduce the concept of bucket filling by reading....
Throughout the year students write compliments to each other using use this...
They place the compliments in each others' buckets.
I have seen some teachers get really creative on what they use for buckets. This year I am having my "buckets" do double duty. They will be cubby name tags as well.
I'm finally ready to begin assembling my crate seats as seen on Pinterest and just about every other teaching blog ever created. I may be late to the party, but boy am I excited!
I ordered the crates online from Staples, a little pricier than Target or Walmart, but much sturdier. I had a coupon, so 6 crates (and a big box of pencils) came out to $40. They arrived today.
I went to Home Depot to get my plywood and boy did I luck out! I had the most helpful, generous and friendly associate help me. Say hello to Steve. (Apologies for blurry photos today)
Thanks to my new best friend, I mean Steve, I am now the owner of perfectly measured plywood. If you know me, you know I'm not the measuring type. I wouldn't have known where to begin and I can guarantee if I had to cut these myself, they would look more like puzzle pieces than perfect rectangles.
The BEST part about my Home Depot experience was that when he found out this was a classroom project, he only charged me $4.00. What a steal.
I've searched high and low for the best price and product for the foam padding. I didn't realize how expensive it was! After much shopping around, I decided to go with a memory foam pad from Walmart. This came to $25.00. My mom and I will cut it up into smaller pieces before adding the fabric. This should give me more padding than necessary for 6 stools, so I plan on sharing the wealth with a fellow teacher.
The fabric I chose can be found in this post. Of course, now that I already have my fabric, I heard of an even better idea. Some people are making these crates with vinyl table clothes. What a great idea! That sounds much easier to clean. I think I will stick with my fabric for this year and try to find a clear plastic tablecloth for protection.
Side note: Check out this fantastic roll of duct tape I scooped up at Walmart today. How Cute?
It's no secret that I've been spending my summer doing all the fun, cutesy, decorating type stuff for my classroom. It's one of my favorite parts about teaching. However, there is much more to teaching than creating a well decorated classroom.
The Common Core is coming quickly. Pretty soon we will no longer be using Massachusetts state standards; but rather a set of standards used nation wide. We will be saying goodbye to the MCAS for good. I've been trying to read up on the new standards and figure out which have changed or been removed. I came across the MasteryConnect website and found out I can add the common core standards to my blog. Over on the right hand side of my blog you should see a pull tab. You can use this to search for standards by grade and subject. How helpful is that? I also downloaded the app for my iphone. Now I can have access to all those standards at any time, on the go. Because we all know how often you stop in your tracks and say "Hmm.. I wonder what standard number 4.OA.2 is ?" Just kidding, but I'm sure it will come in handy for quick reference throughout the year.
I purchased it online for $24.99 from Classroom Friendly Supplies. After reading the reviews, I was sold. I went through 3 pencil sharpeners last year and was determined to invest in a good one for the upcoming school year. Let me tell you, this thing sharpens pencils like no other sharpener I've seen. Hopefully it can stand the test of time.
This is the blog that really sold me on it. I also like her classroom management idea about pencils.
Time to go enjoy the "pick of the week" weather out there. Happy Monday!