Friday, July 29, 2011

My Classroom Pictures - a work in progress!

Here are before pictures of our classroom~  Just to give you an idea of where your child will spend most of their day - Our "home away from home"

Lots of work to do . . .

My wonderful reading benches (the cushions are still at home). . .

These are my students browsing boxes (there is another cabinet just like it behind this one). Students will use their "browsing box" to store their leveled readers and books that we make that match our charts that we use during "read the room."   The blue tubs on top will hold finished "books"  that students make during writer's workshop.

These are my ABC cards that I made.   The images match the images in student's ABC books.

Our wonderful color caterpillar!

These are our "star words" 

I will post more pictures soon. 

Monday, July 11, 2011

Wall Stories - Great for Retell!

Every month my class creates two "wall stories".  We "retell" a story that I have read to them and use the interactive writing process to complete a page or two everyday (this process can take up to 1 or 2 weeks depending on the length of the story).  Once the page is written I choose an illustrator to draw an illustration to match the text.  We then use the story for reading the room during workstations.  This school year we will start the school year by retelling Brown Bear Brown Bear and we will also make a math wall story.  Due to my small classroom I am forced to put our wall stories out in the hallway.  However, it has proven to be a great place to display our stories.  I have had several teachers pop into my classroom and tell me what a fantastic job my kinders are doing with reading the storeis out in the hall.  They are surprised at how well my kinders can read the stories AND stay on task!!  It is so much fun to see how excited they get when we are writing our stories and they can hardly wait to be chosen as the illustrator.  Please stay tuned and I will post pictures each month showing our wall stories!

Just to wet your appetite:  here are a few pictures of last year's Little Red Hen Wall Story!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Getting Ready and Gearing Up For a New School Year

Hard to believe, but I need to get back to school and get busy!  Went into my room yesterday to get a paint cup.  Dear sweet hubby is making me a new 4-sided painting easel station.  It is looking so awesome.  I will post pictures as soon as it is finished!  Anyway, went into my room and --OH MY GOODNES!  My room looks so bare and unfinished - but wonderfully clean!  I love the bright shiny clean floors at the beginning of the school year.  I have so much work to do.   I get so overwhelmed during this time of the year.  Seems like just yesterday I was packing the room up for it's summer cleaning! 

I have been so busy this summer!  Let's see what I have done for my dear sweet kinders this summer:
     *Made Zero the Hero puppet.
     *Made several small drawstring bags out of adorable blue fabric with yellow stars - will use these for dice and game pieces for math and literacy tubs.
     *Read, from cover to cover, Math Work Stations by Debbie Diller.
     *Organized all of my math and literacy games.
     *Repaired torn chair pockets - going on their 4th year of use!! PHEW!!!  Might need to make new ones!
     *Created new labels for my book tubs in my classroom library.  They look awesome - will post pics of those soon - as soon as I get back in with my camera.
     *Starting to read, AGAIN, Talking, Drawing, Writing Lesson for our Youngest Writers by Martha Horn and Mary Ellen Giacobbe

     *Bought several, several books from my favorite place to shop for them -- Garage Sales!!  Beefing up the old library!
     *And oh yeah------Creating my first ever BLOG!!!

Oh my goodness, I really haven't even scratched the surface of  all I want to do!

A teacher's work is never done!!