Friday, December 28, 2012

Organizing ...

Hi all!

I like to think of myself as being organized, but the truth is that I am not organized when it comes to paperwork.  I am a logical, sequential thinker, but I tend to put papers into piles.  When one pile gets high, I start another.  Sad, very sad .. and definitely not organized.

But there are some areas of my classroom that are very organized:

1)  My student drawers ... 

I do not have cubbies, so I use these drawers from Costco.  The drawers are numbered from 1-30.  (In the past I only had 20 students, but now I have gone up to 26.)  My students are numbered from 1 to 26.  After I correct their work, it is placed in the correct drawer.  Then homework folders are easy to stuff once a week with their finished and corrected work.  (I am so blessed to have an amazing volunteer aide from the middle school next door; she spends about four hours a week helping me with this type of clerical work.  I love her dearly and will be sad at the end of the semester when I lose her!!!)

2)  Our classroom library ...

I have about 2,000 books in the classroom library.  (The longer you teach, the more books you accumulate!!!  In other words, I have been teaching a long time.)  With that many books, I needed to create a system that would allow students to both find and put away books.  I sorted books by topics and then put each topic into a different tub (example: weather).  I have about 50 tubs.  This photo shows just one section of tubs.  Each tub was given a number and each book in that tub labeled with that number.  My previous post has more information on this system.  I also have a "book hospital" for books that need repair.  My students place books there when they notice a rip (even if the rip is invisible to the naked eye).

Okay, now on to my goals for organizing ... 

I will create an organization system for my paperwork.  This will consist of:
1)  A tub for papers I want to copy.
2)  A tub for papers that need to be corrected.
3)  A tub for papers that need to be sorted.  NO MORE PILES!

I also want to create a better system for my stations that are supervised by parent volunteers.  I plan to have five tubs (one per station) that I can label and prep ahead of time.  No more scrambling around in the hours before dawn (not really, but you know what I mean).

Whew!  If I keep these goals it will be a HUGE positive change for me!!  Wish me luck!

For more tips on organizing, head on over to Second Grade Shenanigans.  Here is the link!

Love to all,


Friday, December 14, 2012

Silence to Honor and Remember

A parent came up to me after school and threw her arms around me.  With tears in her eyes, she said, "I just felt like hugging you today."  Then she told me the news.

My heart is broken for all of the children, teachers and parents of Sandy Hook.  We will hold our little ones a little closer to our hearts as we remember you.
Love to all,

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

In Honor of 12-12-12

Tomorrow is 12-12-12!  I got to thinking about it and realized that there won't be another 12-12-12 for one hundred years.  That means this is the only one any of us get in our lifetime.  That is pretty monumental!  So .. I came up with 12-12-12 challenge for my firsties.  I found other ideas online, but I needed to simplify things for my kiddos.  We will be using this form tomorrow.  Here is the link in case you are interested:

12-12-12 Challenge

Love to all,