Thursday, August 16, 2012

Classroom Pictures

These books are organized according to when/why I read them to the class. Some of those stickers say plot, main idea, retelling, reading/writing connections, writing procedures, and some are organized by author. I have this addiction to books. I love them! There are certain ones that I REALLY love to read to the kids, like Bubba the Cowboy Prince, Recess Queen, Catalina Magdalina... and ... and ...
Introducing...the awesome tree! Thanks to Mrs. Jump's blog I was (with my hubby's help) able to incorporate this fabulous addition to my jungle. I used PVC pipe for the trunk and I taped the base with duct tape, which I probably should add to my "Every teacher needs" label. The kids will love the writing station under the palm tree! 
This year, my first graders will be able to enjoy some shade while at the computer station. You cant see them (the computers) because of that itty bitty pile under them and the ugly cords, all of which will be cleverly hid.

This is how I will manage writer's workshop. Actually, the kids will manage writer's workshop. On the clothespins will be a picture of the students. When they are prewriting, they will use their writing journals (which they will decorate and keep in their desks). When they are ready to write their draft, they willmove their picture clip to the drafting ribbon and keep their writing folder (with the draft in it) in the sloppy copy bucket. They will repeat this for revising, editing, and publishing. I am going to make another version of the signs and then post them on teacherspayteachers.

Welcome to one of the most important places in the classroom! Those snazzy little Pinterest seats were made by hubby. He was clever and made them hang over with a lip on the inside so they don't slip around. Inside the crates, I can keep reading logs, whisper phones, comprehension question cards, TPRI tests, and all kinds of helpful tools for guided reading.

Binder Covers

Adding some fun to my organizational binders! Click HERE if you would like to download them too! There is a cover and spine for Parent Contact, Plans, Teaming, Data, Running Records, and Anecdotal Records.

Friday, August 10, 2012


I have no idea where this originated, but I like it! Of course, the vinyl had to be incorporated.

Here a pocket chart, there a pocket chart, everywhere a pocket chart!

Can't fold em? Hang em!

Everything has its place!

I have already posted a picture of these, but I am so excited about them! I had to reshape all these drawers to make them fit in my designated spot.


I wish I had a picture what my cabinets USED TO look like. There is no turning back now! I am excited about the thought of instantly seeing what I need and not having to restack piles of tubs to get it! Yeehaw!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Happy Birthday!

Happy birthday straws! This bucket of good times will be a new addition to my classroom. Click HERE to get a copy!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Calling all Parents!

Holy moly! Seems like the first day of school is right around the corner! I am beginning to have the anxiety induced dreams, probably due to my LONG "to do" list. Here is one thing that I can check off! It's a parent volunteer sign up sheet, which I will give to each parent at "Meet the Teacher"night. Click HERE to take a look.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

It really is magic!

Takes off stray marker marks from plastic bins and tubs! Smells good too!

What and When!

In an effort to save wall space (not sure if I actually accomplished that) I combined my schedule and my objectives. Stiil lovin the vinyl! I used it to show the subjects and the times. The oh so cute schedule cards are from Cara Carroll's blog.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Target Dollar Spot LOVE

I only need one pocket here and one pocket there! Solution? Cut up a Target Dollar Spot pocket chart and frame the pockets with cheetah ribbon! I use one of these for sorting numbers greatest to least and least to greatest. The other one is used for extending patterns.

Grab and Go!

This organizer from Wal Mart holds my recess bell, car rider and bus rider stickers, a Sharpie, emergency route plan, a class roster, and student transportation information.  Whether we are going to recess or participating in a fire drill, I can grab what I need on the way out the door!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Burlap and Giraffe Bulletin Board

This is the ONE part of my classroom that is no longer a devastation. :)  I abandoned my other messes and worked on this little marriage of giraffe print material and burlap. Be glad you're spared the view just a few degrees to the right! :)

A BIG Thanks

I would like to extend a big thanks to Mrs. Kiser from Adventures of Teaching for the Liebster Award Nomination. Her blog is awesome! I also recommend these blogs for fabulous ideas. I would like to pass along the Liebster nomination to:

1. Shaking It Up In 1st Grade
2. A First Grade Fairy Tale
3. The Fairytale of a First Grade Teacher
4. 1st Grade Jungle
5. First Grade Honeybunch

Here are the rules for the Liebster Blog Award:

Thank the person that nominated you and link them!
Nominate 5 more people (who have fewer than 200 followers)
Comment on the 5 people you nominated and let them know!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Write it down

A new school year not only brings 'brand new teachers and brand new books"
For me, it also means getting a new journal! In this journal, I write all my teacher passwords and record all the notes from inservice, meetings, PLC teaming, parent/teacher conferences, and anything else I need! I dont always need to lug around my big bulky binder with state objectives and our scope and sequence. Any really important notes/reminders go on Post It notes and are placed on the inside cover. This is one personal tradition I will hold on to for sure!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

You know it's bad when...

You know it's bad when you HAVE to make your trashcan match your room!
This is what wrapping paper, tape, and a little time can do!

Easy Student Organization

This little notebook is key to helping my year run smoothly. Since my classroom is jungle themed, it is a "S.A.F.A.R.I." notebook. It stands for Students and Families are Readily Informed. The student's name will go in the little box next to the lion. Here is how it works!
The first pocket is for notes from home. I like this here because students can quickly and easily check if they have a note for me. (Inside this pocket is one of the magnets I made for "Meet the Teacher").

Next is this money pouch. Again, it is easily and quickly visible as soon as the notebook is opened.
Then we have the "Do and Don't" page for the notebook.

This page communicates daily behavior for an entire 6 weeks. Our whole school shares a color system where green is great, blue is a warning, yellow is loss of privilege, and red means an office referral. In my class, students color their own squares each day before going home (unless they were not on green, in which case, I color it). 
What comes next you ask? I know it's a real page turner!

I guess the picture speaks for itself. Since it will be in a page protector, students can slide old ones out and new ones in when the time comes (we have a little lesson on how to do that).


How do you make a take home folder fun? Call it "Safari Mail"! HA! Oh! Just wait until you see the inside!

The label on the left says, "Keep" and the other says, "Sign and Return"

Now we have come to the homework portion! There are all kinds of goodies behind this folder!

This label says, "Practice Cards". This pencil holder will not hold pencils, but rather sight word cards, or flashcards, or take home games. This way, nothing falls out and gets lost...which leads me to the last item in the SAFARI notebook.

The "Book Pocket"! This shnazzy 3 hole punched, velcro enclosing miracle holds books that students will take home and read and then return to school. The number of lost books in my class is very minimal now!This is one of the best investments I make. PLUS...

It holds all the things a new, later enrolled student will need.

I have always put this notebook together with my class the first week of school. We start backwards to avoid the constant opening and closing of the 3 rings. Yes, this takes time and patience, but the students end up LOVING their binder and they know how to use it. (Another helpful hint: I put the stickers inside the pouches so they last longer). 

Monday, July 16, 2012

Keepin it clean!

Once again, I have found another excuse to play with vinyl. I found these buckets in the Target Dollar Spot. Every table group will have a trash bucket.

Every teacher needs...

Found these little babies at Wal Mart! No more pencils on the floor! (hopefully)
Every teacher needs a little laminator! The convenience of this little honey is unmeasurable.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

For the fridge

These are AWESOME! Run them through the printer just like paper! I just made a class set of magnets with my contact info for parents. The plan is to pass them out at Meet the Teacher Night!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Meet my new friend, vinyl!

I LOVE VINYL! We plan weeks in advance and I needed a way to organize and quickly find what I need.  Each 6 weeks has a drawer for working with words, reading, writing, math, science, and social studies. If I find something in advance, I can place it in the corresponding drawer and be ready to share it with my team. In the mean time, class sets of copies are ready to go! This is helpful for subs too! (I used the scraps to make the zebra stripes.) NOW...where else can I stick some vinyl?! The possibilities are endless! I need more colors!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

New here

I love love love looking at other teachers' blogs. I thought it might be fun to start one myself. Maybe one day, I will have a follower! Hehehe!