Thursday, September 5, 2013

Back to School 2013-2014

Well, Brian got the storage room cleared out after all!  Brian is our campus CIS, and he promised me at the end of last year that he would get the storage room, that would be my "classroom" this year, cleaned out and move my things down for me before the school year started.  It was stacked floor to ceiling with instructional materials! I have no idea where he put it all, but I don't really want to know! 

This is what I found when I went to check out the room the week before school started... not much!

 Thankfully, the room did have 2 bulletin boards and a whiteboard.  There aren't any countertops, which I am finding I really miss! But, there was a small bookshelf that was in pretty bad shape, 3 sets of wall shelves, and a large, 2 door cupboard.  There was an overabundance of trapezoid tables, which I promptly gave away. I took the bookshelf home and painted it a nice bright color.



There aren't many things on the walls yet. But, I did hang my work of art! Our back to school party was held at Painting With a Twist. It was really a lot of fun and I can't wait to go again.  I'm thinking I would like to get the girls together and go for my birthday!

I'm lucky the colors look good in my little room!

So here are the after photographs.  I like the color combination and I think it turned a pretty bland, sterile environment into a much more enjoyable place to spend my days.

View from my desk! I actually had to have a desk again because there isn't a filing cabinet in the room!
I had to have a secure place to keep student files.

Look how cut my painting is! And it looks great,
hanging above my bookshelf.

I don't really need student desks or tables, because I will work
with small groups at the horseshoe table. But, I didn't want a big,
empty room.

I used pennant swags I made from scrapbook paper & ribbon, and plastic table cloths to cover the bulletin boards.
The jazzy "carpet" is actually throw rugs from IKEA.

Here is where the real teaching will take place.  Lots of phonics,
sight words, syllable work, and reading, reading, reading!

I know it is hard to see, but the 2 pictures hanging beside my desk were given to
me by a former student at the end of last year. One is a hand-drawn picture of our class at recess
that her mother helped her make.  The second one is a painting she bought with her allowance
at a Children's Cancer Fundraiser Auction.  It has VW Beetles in it and she told her mom
I just HAD to have it!

I still haven't started using the Wilson Program, the district program that is used to help dyslexic students. I will attend training for 3 days in Austin, and then 2 more days in the district and I can finally start getting to know my students week after next.
 So what have I been doing all day? During the first week of school, I was teaching Pre-K because one our teachers had to go on emergency medical leave. That was an experience!!  
And for the past week, I've been helping out in the home rooms of my dyslexic students.  I'm hoping I can establish a good, working relationship with their teachers so that once I start pulling students for instruction and assessment, they won't be so quick to be irritated with me. 
I've also been able to see so many of the students that I have had since I started teaching at Skipcha.  They are all confused about why I don't have a second grade class anymore, but they're still excited that I'm visiting their rooms!