Blog Mini-Series: Getting Ready to Go Back to School! One week and counting…
Back to School is just about here (for me at least). I meant to do this blog post earlier this week, but time got away from me! We got back from our vacation on Tuesday, so I have been working in my room every day since Wednesday. Here are the things that I have been working on in my classroom to Get Ready for Back to School!
Back to School Classroom Set-Up! Where do I begin?
Here is what my room looked like the first day that I walked in:
Over the years I have learned that I have a tendency to get off track when setting up my room. I always have grand plans for projects that I would like to do over the summer. Sometimes they happen, sometimes they don’t. This year they didn’t, and that is OKAY! But, that means that I have to be ultra-focused!
The first thing that I always do is to get my desks/furniture arranged the way that I want it. This can be difficult for me because I lack visual/spatial awareness! That part of my brain just doesn’t work well! So, I have to physically have to move things around. I do that first in case I run out of time! Here is where I am today (I still have 2 school days until the kiddos show up for Open House!)
Label all the things.
This part is a little more difficult because I can’t always do this step without my class list. I use class numbers so I can label the things (locker tags, folders, book boxes, supply boxes, binders, etc…) with numbers, but I don’t assign students names to the numbers until I have my “final” class list.
Get Ready for Open House!
A few years ago we changed our Open House to 2 days before school starts. We LOVE this! No impromptu parent conferences, the kiddos get to check out the room, meet the teacher, sharpen some pencils, choose some books for their book boxes, find their locker, etc. The kiddos are more comfortable on the first day of school, and so are the parents since they too had the chance to meet the teacher. My face always hurts from smiling by the end of the evening! I love meeting my kiddos ahead of time and seeing my former kiddos. I have to stay late that night, but it is well worth it!
I put out the following things for the students and their parents.
For the kiddos: Their supply box, their book box, 2 pencils for them to sharpen, a scavenger hunt to help familiarize them with the room, their travel folder, and a small Welcome Back gift!
For the parents: Some important paperwork that needs to be signed! Home/School Compact, contact information, and sign ups for room parents etc.
Mrs. Russell has an awesome freebie of all of those classroom management things that we as teachers need to keep in mind at the beginning of the school year! You can find it HERE!
Last, but certainly not least!
We have 2 teacher work days before the start of school. The first day is filled with meetings etc. in the morning, then a work day in the afternoon. This is when I put the finishing touches on my room for Open House.
The day before school starts is a workday. I spend the most of the morning with my team lesson planning for the first 2 days and the first full week. We don’t do all exactly the same things, but we do a lot of similar things, so we plan, then divide and conquer the copies, getting books together etc. I am changing up my lesson planning template this year. This is what I am going with (we will see how long it lasts:
Would you like to try it? It is editable in Powerpoint! HERE!
Don’t forget that the kiddos won’t know if it’s not done “right”!
Enjoy this post? Pin the image below to keep it for future reference!
This notebook has been so valuable for tracking reading progress! I have created multiple notebooks for multiple grades. I have found this to be so helpful for keeping on the same page with my aide as well. We can both pop into this and see what work has been done with which students! Thank you for this wonderful teaching aide!