Saturday, August 3, 2013

Room is ready for Open House

After some folder stuffing, some planning last night and this morning, I can take a big sigh of relief, my room is ready for open house. Woohoo!
This is the most prepared I have ever been, and I am waiting for Murphy's Law to kick in. Seriously, Open House has often been a comedy of errors for me. Kids run super high fevers my first week back, I go in to labor 2 months early, I can't get in to my room because of this or that, and so on. Well, this year it seems I have jumped the hurdle and things are not as hectic as in the past.
What's the difference? Well as for the kids and the fevers, they are older and have been home with Dad during pre-planning, not in a germ infested daycare. Coincidence? I think not! Perhaps those high fevers will arrive for my youngest later in the week, let's knock on wood that it won't. Now that the kids are a little older it is a little easier for me to get things done at home and in my classroom.
Of course, hubby deserves some credit for not fussing at me working late, leaving extra early, sneaking in on Saturday, and cutting out name tags and lamination while we laid in bed watching TV. A little time alone with our boys is always good for him, helps him appreciate all that I do and that I am not just griping to gripe. Win-win for all of us!
I say I am ready, but that doesn't mean I am totally done. There is more to do, you just can't see it, I have it all neatly stowed away.
It is a nice feeling knowing that I do not have to rush up to the school at 6 am on Monday to shove things under tables or in the workroom. If I get there early, I can chip away at organizing the teacher things on my shelves and keep striving to have the best year ever!
My room is not full of super cute things, but with the limited amount of space I have, I think it looks pretty darn good. Want to see some pictures?
Ok, here goes....
My favorite area is my book area. After reading The Book Whisperer, I am on a mission to get all of my 5th graders to love to read and strive to read 40 books this year. I love my "Let's Read" display and the bookshelves. (I was too excited about putting it up and in my haste, some parts are crooked, and not perfectly spaced, but I am not going to obsess about it.)
The circles have the genres listed on them, as students meet their goal in each genre they earn an apple to put their name in that section. At the bottom have the multiples of 4 to the #40 and plan to make a line plot with little X's to show how many total books the class reads monthly. Love the idea of integrating a line plot with tracking our reading goals. I have this set available on TpT.
I fell in love with the shades of orange, it has chevron and polka dot patterns. I need to add the numbers to the set on TpT (a project to tackle later...). If the orange is not your color I will happily customize it for you, just let me know. (You can see my mailboxes in the background, that is the sink shelf. The Let's Read display is on the back of my double-door supply cabinet.
I love how this is the first thing you see when you walk in my room, hoping this really inspires the kids too.
View of the bookshelves next to the goal display. There are CAFE signs and genre posters surrounding the shelves. On the side of the supply cabinet are my classroom jobs, I still have to add student names to rotate through the jobs.
I will add reminders and announcements to the bottom section.
You cannot see it but next to the mail boxes is a wall that I posted a classroom behavior incentive, downloaded it last year from Clutter Free Classroom. The system encourages the class to earn compliments and reach certain goals. I used it to help the class encourage great choices amongst themselves. After the chain reached the floor I rewarded the class with extra recess. It was amazing who paid closest attention to the chain and its length.
A picture with my little helper at my back table. Standing on my crate seats. They are pretty sturdy.
The coat rack. I glued their numbers above their hook.
Above the hook is the super cute Rainbow Chevron Before you leave I mustache you to signs designed by Fifth in the Middle. They are super cute and I have received tons of compliments. Check them out.
My Boggle Display. I cut it in half so it would fit on the front doors of this supply cabinet. Last year it was on the back of my classroom door and honestly it did not get as much use as I would have liked. I guess during my move I lost two of the letters to the word Boggle, so I redid made new ones today, they match the colors in the room. They match the color scheme in my room. I bought this last year on TpT from Clutter Free Classroom. I think I will add something at the bottom for the kids to write in words as they complete this activity. Would be fun to have a running list to see how many words they can come up with. I usually try to use letters that they will find in their weekly vocabulary.
Science and Social Studies Words. I love the science set, that was one of my projects from the summer. I already copied the accompanying glossary for my students. The social studies cards came with our social studies series, I am planning on making my own, but haven't gotten to it yet. The cards are great because the definitions are on the back of the words. If I make a word wall set I plan to use the cards in a definition matching center. I really like the card holders, bought them at Target for  $3 each. They are for holding board trim, but I stapled it to my board and the size of the slots is perfect!
Front corner by the board. Homework section, Daily 5 rotation centers, we turned it in to Daily 6 since we rotate through 6 centers over 2-3 days. You can also see the Hand signal cards by the flag, another great download from Clutter Free Classroom. I have my social studies and science quick readers near the front corner and will highlight certain titles as we go through the various units. Above the shelf is the respect chart that will remain up through the first month of school. I plan to make a copy of it for their binders.
For Monday I posted the specials and daily schedule for parents and students to see. I made special area cards and hung them from the board. I hole-punched them and have them hanging from a ring so we can flip to the daily special area class. The boxes on the floor are for collection purposes on Monday.
I put all the kids books out on their desks and to the side you can see stations for parents to sign up or collect information during open house.
New to my room is the fabric that is covering my metal shelves. I love how it makes the room feel more home-like. The top half is a cool butterfly fabric and the bottom is grey and white polka dots.
This is the shelf on my side of the room with the same fabric, just opposite order. I used the cool technique I saw on pinterest to hang them; a wooden dowel through the top, and two command clips on the outside part of the shelf. Worked like a charm! I bought the dowel at Wal-Mart and the fabric at Hobby Lobby. I want to make covers for my big wall shelves behind my desk. That area is still a little cluttered, but going to work on that next week. I moved this summer and inherited some amazing items from a 32 year veteran who retired. I am really going to miss having her right next door! You can see my teammates room through the doorway, we close that during the day.
I forgot to get a picture of the corner that has my Wordly Wise vocabulary cards. Maybe I will write a part 2 after I finish tidying up my wall and include some close-ups and pictures of the name tags, they match the reading display, first time I am so color coordinated!
I was so proud of how well-behaved my son was at school today. He did not play in the desks or mess up the areas I already set up. He stayed in one area with his food and then sat in my big chair to watch Ice Age while I taped down nameplates. Having 3 boys I am not used to this type of quiet behavior nor getting things finished without a disaster to clean up. I was so proud of him. He was pretty proud too.
Of course when we got home he decided to be a little mischievous. I think he was jealous of all the taping I did and so he did some of his own. Check out his project...
Yep, that is tape wrapped around his leg. And yes, that is his leg slightly constricted. No, the bruise was already there. I had to get some scissors to get it off. As I cut he praised me, "I love you momma!" "That doesn't hurt. Oh that is better."
Yep, my life is never dull or quiet. Enjoying the little blessings every step of the way!
Hope you are having a super Saturday!



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