13 August, 2010

My classroom

Puzzle Maps and other Geography
It has been a little bit crazy these past 2 weeks, trying to finalize my classroom layout and plans and get all my paperwork finished, 
but . . .  drum roll please . . . I finally did manage to get my act together enough to welcome my new class!  I have 5 returning students and 10 new students.  This year I also welcomed an assistant teacher!  Yay!  


For awhile now, my friend Honey has been asking me to post some pictures of my classroom,  and honestly, I have been putting her off as I was afraid it wouldn't look very impressive.  (I can always think of about 467 things I want to update or change.)  This year, however, I have decided to embrace my wishes for changes and updates, and think of them as a strength.  I am therefore declaring, "I am highly motivated to keep the classroom familiar and inviting, but also fresh and new!"  And that is very true.  I love setting up activities, and then building on those and the knowledge the children have hopefully gained from working with the particular materials, to create new activities.  I think this is a key part of being an educator.  Additionally I am quite happy so far, with the general classroom design, the activities, and "works."  I am also very excited about the activities I have planned for the future!  Sooooooooo Honey, these classroom pictures are for you!  

Science shelf
This is one of my Science shelves.  I always like to start the year with very simple activity designs, with plenty of items that can be used in a variety of ways.  The top shelf has a series of nesting mirrors, one of which has a small raccoon sitting atop it.  It is next to a couple of books about human and animal life near rivers.  The mirrors and the raccoon are a precursor to an "Ohio River" activity, which I prepared this summer.  The lower shelves have a basket of seashells and a basket of tree "cookies."  There is also a rain stick and a compass, for future works.






This is my shelf (which I picked up at a summer yard sale for $2!) which I use to house the metal insets, metal inset papers, and our basic punching materials.  My insets were given to my mother in law about 25 years ago, by a Montessori teacher who ordered a new set for her classroom and didn't need these anymore.  I sanded and repainted them, my husband made two replacement parts, and voila!  They are good as new!  "What is my favorite thing about this shelf?" you ask.  Well, believe it or not, it is the pencil holders on the top of it!  I had been checking out Montessori classroom pencil cups, online,  for a good part of last year, but I really didn't want to spend too much money on them.  This summer I astounded myself by thinking of a cheap and relatively easy solution, PVC pipe pieces!  I bought a bag of 15, 1 inch pieces, for around $3.  I then painted white price tag stickers, with the colors of each pencil.  I stuck the stickers on, "mod podged" them (just to make sure they stayed "stuck") and then glued them to the top of the shelf!   They work very well, and look very inviting, if I do say so myself!
 : )

I have areas for block building, playing house, and thanks to the lovely swapping group, a large area full of continent boxes!  I will post more photos of these areas, in the days and weeks to come!

And a few more self explanatory areas.
Language
Math

DEAR (Drop Everything And Read) bathtub



Practical Life










3 comments:

  1. I can't believe I missed this post!!!

    I love the pvc holders...stealing it! And, the map cabinet..that flower is beautiful! I love it! And..is that good night moon I see on the bb? We DEAR too! But...it's a shame to leave that beautiful tub there and not give it to me to put in my bathroom! :) The rooms so pretty and calm looking.

    You've gotta get the email feature!

    And, I really love the cards. (You should pop your abc ones up too!!!) ;)~ I'm mean huh? But, you've some serious making skills!

    Honey

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  2. I agree with Honey (Hi Honey!) The room looks so inviting! I want to come learn there...especially in the tub! Great work.
    Kerry
    earthfriendlymama@blogspot.com

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  3. I love the PVC holders too. I think it is so easy to do and so simple. And I LOVE your bath tub!!! I wish I had more room in my classroom to copy the idea!

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Thank you for your comments. They are always much appreciated. : )