Monday, September 5, 2011

Finally...My Home Away From Home!

I am so happy to finally share pictures of my classroom. I absolutely love the way it turned out. I was going for a circus theme, but it really turned out to be a whimsical wonderland...TONS of color, flags and bright lights. So...Welcome to my 2011-2012 Classroom!

Our school uses foam insulation boards as bulletin boards outside of our classrooms. My board is covered in fabric, and I hot glued real crayons on top as a border, and hung it from the ceiling with cute ribbon. Although not my original plan, as a back to school bulletin board, I used empty animal cookie boxes and scrapbook paper elephants with each of my new firstie's names. I think it turned out pretty cute.

For the past several years I have used Poco and Pop's Birthday Banner (which is awesome), but when I saw this on Pinterest, I knew I had to give it a try. I hung fabric on my classroom door, added some cute border, laminated cardstock and the months of the year in random fonts and then the kiddos pictures. I have to say that I am in love with it. I love how personal it is and the kids love looking at their pictures.

So if you haven't heard of QR it! Our most amazing, wonderful techno "chic", Jessica, created these wonderful QR codes for each of our doors for Open House. Parents were able to scan the code and recieve tons of information, including phone numbers, conference periods and email addresses.

Photos from various places in my classroom!

My new "circus themed" word wall. One of my daughter's sweet 4th grade teachers has amazing Cricut skills and I enlisted her help to cut out the letters and circus tents. Thanks Miss Purvis...they turned out awesome.

My smartboard, with one of my favorite pinterest ideas. Bought the big bright lights at Party City and then tied different colored netting to decorate the strands. They turned out A-dorable! Thanks Zoe!

We are a bucket filling classroom! I used a shoe holder from Wal-Mart and cardboard planters from Micheals, with a little rik-rak added, as my buckets. We use a beach bucket to hold colored cotton balls to fill our buckets. I am so proud of how well my kids are doing with Bucket Filling this far NO ONE has thrown a box of crayons on the floor on purpose, just to say someone filled their bucket. Next to that is another behavior management system..Tic Tac Toe..Show me You Know! I use it to reinforce rules and procedures and focus on a different one or two daily. For instance, Tic Tac Toe..Show me You Know how to sit on the rug correctly. If the kiddos can sit correctly for a certain amount of time, then they get to place an X or O. If not, I get to take a play. Kids win = extra recess...I win = minus a couple minutes of recess. They LOVE, LOVE, LOVE to beat Mrs. Kaldis.

Instead of the same old boring nametags that the kids tear off their desks before Christmas, I decided to to a phot of each kiddo with their name and class number typed over it and laminated. The kids love them...they LOVE looking at pictures of themselves.

Jail Words - Found the idea on a first grade blog and the kids love the idea of sending words to jail. Big Hit for teaching sight words. Also, another tribute to pinterest, my milk crate seats. Perfect and great storage - One crate I use just to house any of the items I would need for a new student...G.O. Binder, Calendar Binder, Discipline Folder, etc.

Classroom clock with all the "what time do we go to ..." clocks next to it. Adorable blends and digraph wall...the adorable cards were a free printable a friend found online. Can you say perfect for first grade? Last are my balloon Pixie Sticks for birthdays. They are in a glass jar full of gumballs. They smelled so yummy the first couple of days, but the smell has faded:(

And finally, one my most favorite, yet most simple things in my entire classroom. A friend of mine's mother told me about this idea, and I was sold. Deteregent caps velcroed (Industrial Strength) to desktops to use as pencil cups. They are just the right size, and last forever. I just pull off at Christmas, run through the dishwasher, and I am ready to go for the second semester.