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Friday, July 22, 2016

I "Fixer Upper(ed)" by Classroom!! Classroom Reveal 2016

Whew!  Summer has come to an end and I'm going to have 22 sweet kiddos showing up Monday morning ready for an "incredi-BALL" year in 2nd grade!

Get ready for picture overload!  I'll try to give a good tour around my classroom and include links to products used!  Here are some large views first.

Looking into the classroom from the door.

Looking towards the windows - they look so much bigger with my drapes instead of a valance!

This is my highest level table for my flexible seating classroom.  I have wooden stools from At Home, green stools from JoAnn's (a couple years ago), and an 18" Hokki Stool.

The morning work packets laying out for the first day come from SunnyDays in 2nd Grade

Standing on my stage looking to the back of the classroom.

Adirondack Chairs from Bed Bath & Beyond
Pillows from At Home
Lack Table from Ikea
Rug - Target

Now, let's take a closer look around my classroom!

I still have lots of things on my wish list from Open House, so those leftover got moved to the door - maybe they'll get picked up!

My cabinets are the perfect place for my Math Focus Wall.
Math Vocabulary cards by Jillian Starr

Birthday Display - I just LOVE these mason jars filled with cupcakes!  So stinkin' cute!

This was too cute not to share!  I made a soap dispenser using a mason jar and a pump from a Bath & Body Works foamy pump.  Love my foamy soap and now it has a sturdy base with the mason jar.

Snacks & Water Bottle Baskets

Flexible Seating Choice Board
I found these metal hanging sign at Michaels and added a little vinyl to make a perfect board for my kids to put their personalized magnet up for their Home Base for the day.

When I went to Flexible Seating, I had to do something about the little arguing going on about who was sitting where and "aww man, that's where I wanted to sit".  So I came up with a system where my kids choose a "Home Base" each morning when they come in.  Then when we are on the carpet for a lesson or returning to our classroom from recess, they know where they are supposed to go sit - at least the table.  There was still a little arguing about somebody sitting in a particular seat someone else wanted, but it was no where near as bad and it kept kids accountable and honest!

This is the back corner of my classroom.  Closet and bathroom doors.  The clothespins are perfect for easily hanging student work.  Pictures above doors are from Hobby Lobby.

This year I added clothespins to this mini board above my classroom library as well.

Gotta take a picture the first day to put in our frame!

I brought out Reading Buddies last year and my kids loved to grab some of their favorite book characters to read with.

Classroom Library
Shelves were from Target (years ago).  You can find similar shelves still at Target as well as Walmart and Big Lots.  The fabric bins are from Big Lots.
Rug - Target
Blue Stool  - Ikea

I group my books by topic in my classroom library.   I used white yard sale stickers to number all of my books.  That way when a kiddo gets a book out of the library, they know where to put it back when they are done with it.

Flexible Seating Student "Stuff" Storage.
White Trofast Frames & Bins are from Ikea
This is where my kiddos keep their word folders and their bag of books.  Their work folders go in the green bins and they are grouped by their classroom numbers into groups of 5 or 6.  Their bags of books to read go in the large buckets at the bottom.  They are in groups of 11 for storing their books.

 Turn-In Station!
The Sterilite 3 Drawer organizers on the top shelf is where students turn in their work during the school day.  The second shelf houses their COLLEGE binder and then spelling homework notebooks and library books go on the bottom shelf.
The third Trofast Frame & Bins houses Morning Work Journals, journals for Rooted in Reading, and our Zearn math journals.

Loving my large clock from Walmart and my Heidi Swapp Lightbox.  It's ready for the 1st Day with my 1st Day slides!

My corner of the room.  
Expo Whiteboard - no longer available on Amazon

Now, the front of my room!  Yes, I have a stage!!  I was so excited to get to visit the Ron Clark Academy last year and I needed a stage just like Hope King.  My wonderful dad helped me build it...well, more like I helped by painting it and putting the floor tiles on it!

Having a Rooted in Reading board was one of my favorite changes to my room last year.  It was an easy place to house anchor charts and posters each week that went with our book and the activities.

Metal Baskets from Bulleye's Playground at Target (Dollar Spot - $5)

The colorful plastic lap desks are from Hobby Lobby.  These are perfect for working and my kids also use them for eating lunch.  Since we each lunch in our classroom, the kids that choose the carpet area as their home base for the day, use these to eat lunch on the carpet.

Our daily schedule is ready for Monday!

Class Jobs & Dojo Store bulletin board is above my Trofast bench from Ikea.  These drawers are perfect for storing supplies.  My kids don't go in these drawers, unless they are getting a sticker (with permission) and the cushion makes this a favorite place to sit, or lay, to work.

Excuse my earbud pouches laying out everywhere.  I had parents/kiddos sort supplies at Open House and hope to do that Monday morning as well when the kids come in, so I left these out for the kids to find their pouch and put their earbuds inside.

I try to change our my options in my Dojo Store each nine weeks.  To start the year, I make sure to include a lot of lower priced items because they just can't wait to spend their money.  Then I take those items out later and make them save their money for something that I know they really want, but can't wait to save their money for it.

I use my Clothesline Classroom Helpers job display last year, but I'm loving it even more with my circle labels attached to the clothespins!  Each child gets a Melonheadz kiddo and I use that on most of their labels and things throughout the classroom.

Student mailboxes for work are housed above the bookshelf that I use to house my Rooted in Reading Books.  I use ice buckets from Walmart for each month. 

Student cubbies
Reading Bulletin board with comprehension posters from A Year of Many Firsts

I'll leave you with a pre-paint job picture from last year's classroom reveal and then what my room looks like this year!  What a different some paint makes!

July 2015

June 2016 - ack!  Look at how bad those walls look!!

Early-July 2016
July 22, 2016 - ready for kiddos come Monday!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Class Dojo News Flash!!

Everyone’s buzzing about student portfolios, and I’m really excited about how they’ll increase student ownership in my classroom this year!

Today ClassDojo released Student Stories, an easy way for students to add photos and videos of their classroom work to a digital portfolio. Parents will now be able to follow along with their child's learning — a photo of a poem they wrote, a video of their volcano erupting, a message on how exciting it was to finally solve a tough math problem. Just one photo can now spark hours of conversation at home. Parents, students, and teachers become part of a shared classroom experience.

Made with young learners in mind, Student Stories is incredibly easy to use. After a quick scan of a classroom QR code, students use a shared classroom iPad (Chromebooks and Androids coming soon!) to take photos or videos of their work and add a reflection or comment. 

A simple tagging feature allows any student to add the work to their digital portfolio – along with others in the classroom for those projects done in groups. Nothing is saved or sent home without teacher approval, after which the images are instantly shared with parents wherever they are.

For more information on Student Stories, check out I think you, your students, and their parents are going to love it! And if you have any questions, I’m always happy to help :)  

Monday, July 4, 2016

I'm "Fixer Upper"in my classroom!!

Hey friends!

Happy 4th!  It's been a while since I blogged - but gosh, June was busy!  2 short vacations, lots of TPTing, and I PAINTED MY CLASSROOM!!  Yes, you heard me right, I painted my classroom!  My wonderful mother helped me a lot and we finished up last week and I am so happy with it! 

I am blessed with a wonderful administrator who allowed us to paint our rooms this summer as they were looking...B.A.D!  I have been in my classroom 5 years and it hadn't been painted, and it look bad when I moved in!  No wonder I had so much stuff on the walls - I was trying to cover up all the bad spots!

So, here is what my room looked like when I left on June 9th...

All those white spots - that's spackle that had dried - but that shows you how BAD the walls were - and this is just two walls in my room!  We came back 2 more days and prepped the walls before we got started painting, and we had to do a LOT more spackling.  I told my mom with all those white spots - my walls looked like they had dalmatian spots!

So, before I got to really painting and transforming my room, I got all excited about changing my classroom to a "Fixer Upper" theme!  I LOVE Fixer Upper and will watch the re-runs over and over again and never get tired of all of Chip's antics!

Well - that meant I had to redo just about everything in my room because I had done lots of bright colors before and I really needed (and wanted) to tone it down.  My mom would come help me at school some and would always say, "Wow! There is so much to look at it in here and it is so bright and colorful."  Well that got me to thinking - Do I have too much stuff in here?  Is it too bright?  Am I over-stimulating my kiddos?  Is that why they are always bouncing off the walls?!?! 

Plus, Joanna's designs are a little more "toned down" on the bright colors, but are still beautiful...and you know she loves her some shiplap!  So, I made a classroom decor set that is all about



and some chalkboard too!

A lot of these labels and pieces included were things I used in my classroom already and had had some requests for, so when I decided on a new theme, I decided to put it all together for others to use too!

I finished this set up and got it uploaded to TPT just before it was time to walk out the door to come back home to NC from Virginia and I couldn't wait to get home and start printing all my new goodies!

New library book box labels, Sterilite Drawer labels, and Snack Basket/Microwave Labels - ready to laminate!

New math manipulative labels and storage!  I got the green snap boxes at Dollar Tree (3 for $1) and put them in my new Metal Locker Baskets from Target Dollar Spot ($5).  I also got blue and red snap boxes for dice and foam counters - it's all gotta match you know - plus, that helps with putting things back in the right place!

And a new number line with numbers -5 to 120!

And now, I'm sure you want a sneak peek of what my new paint job looks like...

Well, this is after we finished my new green accent wall - goodbye burgundy!!
It scared me at first with how bright it was - it didn't look like the sample!  But, it did dry darker and I'm loving it now.

Then we had to finish the rest of the room, and we finished that up last week.  I was able to get back in there and put all my furniture back and I'm dying to get back in my room to hang up posters and stuff and just get it done!  Teachers return to work on July 18th and the kiddos come back on the 25th, so we'll start before too long!

Here's a sneak peek and an extra picture I haven't shared on Instagram yet!

LOVE my new curtains!  So glad I decided to get something different - makes my room feel SO MUCH taller!

Wanna do a little shiplap, burlap, and chalkboard too in your room?
Grab my new decor set - on sale through tonight along with the rest of my store!

Have a great 4th!  Happy Birthday America!