Sunday, July 14, 2013

New place, new pup!

We moved last weekend!  Just across town, but still.  Now I am a little closer to work, and it's about $100 cheaper than our last apartment.  Our new apartment has less living room and bed room space, but WAY more bathroom/ kitchen/ storage space.  We can now hide our stuff to make it look like we are really neat and tidy!!  We went to Ikea to get some new stuff to make our apartment more homey.  

A couple hours and a few hundred dollars later, we had our new living room.  I love it.  Yes, it is brown and ORANGE.  The pillows and candles really bring out the orange in the rope bridge (in the large wall canvas).  I think it looks awesome!  Now all we need are some curtains.

We will do our bathroom, bedroom, and kitchen sometime later...

Some other very exciting news is that WE GOT A PUPPY!  Well, not a puppy puppy... We rescued this beautiful pup from the Scottsdale Pet Hotel.  She is two years old, and we think that she is a Basenji mix.
This was the pic that we saw online for her.  We fell in love.
 They found her in Yuma (of all places..) roaming the desert in May.

Here she is barreling towards us, the first time we met her.  We named her Rue.

Rue is getting along at our apartment just fine!  Her only flaw is that she will lick you to death.  She has a few toys, although she prefers to play with us more than her toys.  She is potty trained, and has had no accidents *so far*.  She doesn't seem to be interested in any of our stuff, and is not destructive at all, although we have not left her alone yet.  We do have a crate for her when we leave, but she slept on our floor last night.  She wants to climb up on our bed to sleep with us SO bad, but she settled for the floor after a few minutes of failed attempts.  When we woke up she was lying on her back with her paws up on the wall.  Haha!  She is adorable!

Anyway, I am meeting the new first grade teacher tomorrow!  I am beyond excited about that!  We are just meeting to chat about school, but we are meeting at the school on Thursday.  More things to come!

Leave a comment if you have a clue about what Rue might be mixed with!


Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Last Year

 I guess I went MIA last year for... the whole year, but I took pictures of my classroom, and I would like to share them now.

Here was my room at the VERY beginning of the year.  You can't really tell from this picture, but most of those desks are the double wides.  Then some of them are normal (on the left side).  I didn't even have enough desks for  the amount of kids that I would be having.  I had 29 desks, but was getting 32 kids.  Notice the small table up there?  That was my solution.

Here is my reading rug area (although I didn't have a rug over there until a few weeks into school year.)  From here you can see my easel, my stuffed monkey, Markle Sparkle, my library, my calendar, all about me board, white boards, erasers, phonics phones, Journeys instructional cards and a weird hundreds chart (I won't be using that again).  

My library and my Workshop Way philosophy signs (see my Workshop Way post).

Another look at my reading rug area.  Notice the large black couch cushion... great for this year's alternative seating!
Here's my word wall... I got the cute zoo themed alphabet sign from Teachers Notebook.

My 'days of school place value board'.  Got the little holders from the Dollar Tree and just stapled them into the wall!

My wonderful library!  (They don't all have labels yet)

I love this!  I took all of my teaching resource books and put them in a bunch of magazine holders from Ikea.  Then made little labels and put a strip of contact paper across the whole thing.  Only... now as I have had to move rooms this year, the thing does not move well as one giant piece.  I wish I would have just wrapped them individually with contact paper.  Oh well, live and let learn.

Workshop Way puzzles and Thinkers, as well as a puzzle and Thinker lost and found and a book hospital!

This thing is nifty for centers or little activities.  The red cup on top holds like 25 sticks for the "What to do when you are done" problem.  I tell them to "pick a stick" and each stick coincides with a bin.  They take it back to their seats and  complete the activity quietly.  The blue mailbox on top holds Risk Sheets, 5 Across pages, and other Workshop Way tasks.

I set this up later in the year for supplies.  On top you will see The Prince (our pencil sharpener under the blue bucket... it says "Shh!  The Prince is sleeping!) and little containers for spelling words and word wall words.

Finally, I got rid of all the double wide desks and got normal ones!  Not to mention the fact that I lost a lot of kids and ended up with 24!  I put them into groups of four and put the supplies in the middle.  The teams got to pick out the animal team name, and each team was awarded points for appropriate behavior.  Each week the winning team got a trophy to sit at their desks for a whole day and they got to do "window paints" on one of my giant windows.  Quite the crowd pleaser.

Anyway, that was my room last year.  This year it will be very different because there will be NO DESKS!!  I will be doing alternative seating!  Check out my other posts to see how things are progressing!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Things to buy

Here is a list of things I'll be needing in order to get my room ready for alternative seating (if it's crossed off that means I recently got it)

Friday, July 5, 2013

Recent Purchases

I have been thinking (obsessively) about how to set up my room next year.  Since I have been working full time at a daycare that is an HOUR away from my school, I can't exactly get there to move things around, but I have been sorting things out in my head.

I made a few shopping trips this past week and I am excited to share the things that I have gathered.

Treasures For Teachers-  This store is AMAZING.  Their mission statement it "to provide free and low cost supplies to teachers from community reusable resources".  You pay $35 a year for membership, but it is well worth the price.  Last time I was there, they gave me a huge FREE box of bubble wrap!  I have literally filled my car up of stuff from there and have spent less than $20.

Here is there $5 'Fill A Bag' section.
Here is there laminating and di-cut station.
Here is there FREE section.

Anyway, from Treasures for Teachers I got my big box of bubble wrap (I will be stuffing my DIY bean bag chairs with it... lice will not live in it!), rolls of accounting tape for my writing center, a writing center organizer, a no heat laminating machine, mailboxes, a big couch cushion pillow, and some big books.  All in all I spent just under $30. Here are some pictures of my purchases.

The big couch cushiony pillow, stuffed with bubble wrap of course.
I'd like to either buy a pillowcase for it or make one of my
own using  some fabric that matches my bean bag.
I'm putting this on my writing table.  I can put markers, pencils,
paper, envelopes, accounting tape, etc in it!  Only $2!
The awesome no heat laminator!  $5!  And I checked online,
and the laminate for this machine is only $15!

Ikea- I don't need to tell any of you how amazing Ikea is.  I lived in Michigan up until a few years ago, and had never been to one until I moved out here.  Walking in the store was one of the single greatest things I had ever witnessed.  They have EVERYTHING.  For cheap!  For those of you who don't have one around you, I am truly sorry, and I feel your pain.  You should think about moving.  :)

Anyway, from Ikea, I got some rugs, a trash can (although I'm using it as a place to store my rolled up rugs), a picture frame, an awesome lamp (and light bulbs), and also a couple things for my home.  I spent about $40 at Ikea.  Here are some pictures.

I bought 4 little ruggies at $1.99 each.  Only big enough for one kid to sit or lie on it.

Here's how I'll store the rugs.  The trash can was $3.99.

My amazing new lamp and bulbs.
It will look like one of these when it's not so... in a box.

Anyway, I still need to make a trip to Jo Ann Fabric store.  I need to pick out some fabric to use for the bucket cushions and for the bean bag chair.  I'm thinking green and yellow, but we will see.

That's all for now!


Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Daily 5 Anchor Charts

I was going through my little workbook on Daily 5 that I got from the Conference that I went to a month ago.  I wanted to make a list of all the anchor charts that I would need to make in order to successfully launch Daily 5.  Obviously, I won't fill in the I charts until the students make the suggestions, but some of them I can make ahead of time.  Also I was thinking, that I can make the headings on the big paper pad in the order of which I will introduce the anchor chart.  I just don't like feeling scrambled to write something while I have kids watching me.  I always feel so rushed.

Anyways, here is the order of my anchor charts:

  1. 3 ways to read a book
  2. Read to self I chart
  3. Where to sit (or how to find a spot to sit)
  4. Good fit books
  5. Work on writing I chart
  6. What to write about (or how to choose a topic)
  7. List of writing genres (or forms of writing)
  8. List of word work materials
  9. How to set up materials
  10. How to use materials
  11. How to clean up materials
  12. Acceptable behaviors for listen to reading
  13. How to use listening station materials
  14. Read to someone I chart
  15. EEKK (Elbow elbow knee knee)
  16. How to choose a partner
  17. Coaching strategies (how to coach your partner if they don't know a word)
** Read to self, work on writing, word work, listen to reading, read to someone**