It's getting to be that time... early wake up calls, lesson plans and meetings. When I'm preparing to go back to school, I always start with decorating and organizing my classroom. I truly believe that if the room starts out looking good, then the students will appreciate it and work hard to keep it looking nice. It's also fun for me to work on this stuff, so it eases me back into school mode. My classroom is not fully set up and ready for students yet, but I wanted to share what I've done thus far.
There is a wall right outside of my door where I like to post the standards that the students are currently learning. I made up a quick sign last year and wrote the standards on index cards for each unit. This year, I'm typing up the standards by unit and will post them that way. Now the students all know what we're working on before they enter the classroom and anyone else that walks by knows as well.
You can also see some laminated signs that I made for the front board. One is the classroom survival tips - another thing I found on Pinterest. I can post a close up picture of that too if anyone is interested. The other is the teacher's definition of talking. This really gets the point across - so here's a closer look:
One thing that I make a point to do is acknowledge the strong students often. I think that they seem to get left behind with the emphasis on test results because we know that they'll do well. Last year I started posting the "Star Student" for each class period and it is simply the student with the highest average in the class. The student grades consist of tests and quizzes, so it is a flat out achievement recognition. I was surprised at how it really made the students want to achieve higher scores. The students that regularly got 80s and 90s now wanted to get 100s on everything and were doing test corrections to raise their grades. I was thrilled that they weren't satisfied with 80s anymore! All of this just to have their name on an index card in the front of the room!
Lastly, I had an extra curtain panel that we used at my first house on a closet in leiu of a door. I put it up on a tension rod and hung it in a big bookcase to hide the mess in there. Since my room does not have a closet, I love that I'm able to hide some of the chaos. When I pull the panel to the left, it covers the entire bookcase perfectly.
crate seats I made for a friend's third grade classroom. I'd love to get more ideas from you guys about how you've made your classroom both fun and functional. I'm not trying to rush summer, but I'm ready to get things going with the new school year. I'm sure I'm totally alone with that idea!
Thanks for reading,
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