Hey everyone! I am SO thrilled to have been invited to Tales from a 4th (and 5th) Grade Teacher by the AMAZING Patti!! Thanks Patti! We are in round 2 of our Carolina Girls Guest Bloggers! Yay!
Last week you got to read about Back to School, which is on EVERYONE'S mind, with Lacie from Polka Dots and Pencils. I just loved everything she mentioned in her post! I wish I was better at DIY ...I would totally attempt those crate chairs if I had more faith in myself! :) I was lucky enough to WIN her Back to School Packet!! I am OBSESSED with it! Keep checking my blog because I am going to be blogging about how great it is very soon!
I am going to discuss something that is the center of my life...as I am completely type A...
I have been setting up my classroom this past week, as I am sure all of you have been! Wow! Stressful...
I am finding that the things I am most excited about all have to do with being organized! In fifth grade, our kids just need some organization and structure. I found that my students work best when they know exactly where things are, exactly how things are supposed to be put away, where they are supposed to be put away, and what I expect from them at each and every moment. This all goes back to the organization in the classroom. If you're not organized...you're students will have trouble staying organized! Stay tuned for a freeeebiieeeee :)
Last year I bought 6 bookshelves for my 6 different groups (I am rainbow themed so I have groups for red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple). I have set them up next to each group. Those students keep items that stay in the classroom on these bookshelves...this includes things like morning work journals, dictionaries, white boards and markers, paperclips, editing markers, and their teamwork journal. Throughout the year, things like our state testing workbooks will end up on these bookshelves, as well.
I usually have the "team leader" be the person to grabs the items off of the shelf or loads them back on when we are done with them. Then there is a "grounds crew" (one from each group) who will always make sure the bookshelf looks neat and tidy before they go off to their next class!
I use this color coordinated system for my weekly plans. I make all of my copies on the Friday morning before the next week. That way, I can go home for the weekend and not worry about getting in early on Monday! I like to put all of my copies in these folders that match the day they belong to, and are labelled with the particular class. I teach math to all of the fifth graders, so depending on the level of the class the activities may vary. This has also turned out to be WONDERFULLY useful when I was sick out of the blue and a substitute came in. I did not even have plans written out - but she didn't need them! Everything was already there for her! My students usually learn my 'system' and they even will grab the appropriate papers for their class and pass them out for me without asking! It's so great to see how independent they become! Fifth graders loooove to help the teacher :)
I just finished two of my favorite projects - tackling the white boards! I have this random extra whiteboard in my room that is over to the side...somewhere I don't really ever stand in front of during class time. I decided that I was tired of my tiny, pocket chart calendar because in fifth grade, we have a lot going on that could go on our monthly calendar! I decided that since I loved to look at the whole month at a time, my kids might also! I create a HUGE calendar on this white board and I LOOOVE it! I had the labels laminated, and then I hot glued magnets to the backs. This is my favorite thing in my room! You can purchase these labels on my TpT store HERE!
I have included every holiday I could think of, as well as things like test days, report cards, no school, etc.
Time for what you all have been waiting for...the freebie!!! Part of our school teaching the 7 Habits is for the students to always know what they need to take responsibility for at each moment. I created these signs for "Must do", "May do", and "Homework". This keeps everything that is a priority in one place! I write what we must get to and then what we may get to if we have time next to each other because then the students can see our first priority, and then the fun thing they may earn if we get to it! It is a great motivator and a good way for them to see how they can earn something if they "put first things first". Come over to my blog to download these for FREE !!! :)
WOW! I hope I did not overload you with information! :) The little type A person inside of me gets really excited when I talk about organization!
Thank you to Patti for having me!! I am super excited about this! Also, thank you to all of the followers of Tales from a 4th (and 5th) Grade Teacher for letting me come and tell you a little bit about my classroom!!
Feel free to stop by Little Lovely Leaders anytime you want! I would LOVE to have you!
Especially right now...there is a really, reeeeally great giveaway going on right now!!!
Thanks again!! :)