Saturday, September 7, 2013

Welcome to My Classroom!

Hey everyone!
After the craziness of the first few weeks of school, I have finally cleaned my classroom up enough to take some pictures.  So, I am linking up with Swimming Into Second for her Show Off Your Space linky party!

Welcome to our classroom!

 This is our "meeting area"/classroom library.  
I love to teach lessons in our meeting area.  I am able to get closer to their level and they seem to be more engaged there.  I can also easily refer to our math wall and the word wall from the meeting area.  In the middle is our calendar.  We are doing Everyday Math this year but I haven't set up my calendar with all of the Everyday Math supplies yet... they are not very cute and I am a little bitter about that ;).  I guess I will have to suck it up and display the not so cute calendar stuff.

 I LOVE my teacher chair in our meeting area... I just wish it wasn't brown.  It is so comfy and cozy.  I have random puppets perched all over my chair :).

This is the back of our meeting area/classroom library.  
On the middle shelf are the book bins for each table.  In each book bin, every member at the table has a book bag that contains 5 books they have picked out- 1 too hard book, 1 too easy book, 2 just right books, and 1 just for me book (that can be any book they want).

In the back corner of the room is my "teacher" area.  
Don't you LOVE the table!  This was the table I go through Donors Choose!  I am in love with this table.  It is so big and I can work with so many students... I'm going to have to put more crate seats around it.  Behind the table is a bit of a mess.  The green curtain is hiding a bunch of my teacher books.  The blue bins at the top are all of my mentor texts divided out by subject and strategy.  

 Here is the front of our classroom.  
I rarely stand up here to teach, so rather than putting our reflection desk in the back of the room where we have most of our lessons, I put it in the front of the room where it is actually out of the way.  

A closeup of our shelves in the front of our classroom.
All of the supplies students may need throughout the day are here.  Sharp pencils, a place for their dull ones, extra glue sticks, highlighters, extra erasers, post-it notes, index cards, dry erase markers, dry erase erasers, dry erase boards, clipboards, paper, writing notebooks, math notebooks, word work notebooks, and of course the CUPS cups!  I also have a little bucket of colored pencils for students to use when they edit their writing.

 This is the other side of the front of our classroom.  
My SMART Board was mounted in a very awkward place and my kiddos at the tables closest to the door can't see it.  So I put a little rug in front of it to provide a place for those students to sit when we have a lesson on the SMART Board.  My husband made the box for me last year so my kiddos could reach the SMART Board, I of course had to paint it :).  And it opens up so it has given me more storage space!  Next to the SMART Board I have our "I can..." statements... I love the zebra background.

Table cubbies!  
Each table has a space that has markers, crayons, a basket full of manipulatives we use, a supply basket with scissors and glue, and their extra work folder.  This makes it so easy to get supplies out!  The "Quiet Captains" at each table are in charge of getting whatever their table needs for a lesson from their cubbies.

Not the best picture, but this is our check-in station (on the left), Duck Buck pockets (on the door), voice level reminders (above the Duck Bucks), sanitizing station (on the right), and student folders (below the sanitizing station).

I love these bins from Big Lots for holding student folders!

Again, not the best picture.  :(  
These are our classroom jobs and my awesome barber chair another teacher gave me!  Students get to sit in it during read to self time... it goes up and down! :)  They love it.

I may be a tad OCD about student pencils!  
I hated having to touch the pencils when I'd sharpen them and they had to be sharped all the time, so last year I started using mechanical pencils.  I'm so surprised at how well my 2nd graders use these!  It makes their writing neater and they stay sharp for so long.  I didn't want students to fight over colors, so each table has a specific color of pencil.  It also helps them know where a pencil goes when they find it on the floor.  One of my classroom jobs is "pencils" and this person fills up all of our "dull" pencils with lead on Friday.

I hope you enjoyed the tour of our classroom.  To see more amazing classrooms, head over to Swimming Into Second and check out all of the wonderful teachers that have linked up.  


Sunday, September 1, 2013

Classroom Management and Birthday Giveaway Winners!

Hey everyone,
I'm very excited to share my new classroom management tool, that is working like a charm, and the winners of my birthday giveaways!

First I have to share this hilarious card one of my students made me for my birthday.  She knows I love Duck Dynasty... so she decided to make us part of the Robertson clan! :)

Okay... on to classroom management...

This year I quickly realized that some of the classroom management systems I have used in the past just aren't going to work.  At our school, every teacher uses the same behavior system.  Some teachers use moving clips, pulling tickets, or jumping frogs, but our colors and consequences are all the same.  In my classroom, students pull tickets.  They start each day on blue (because that is our school's color), green is a warning, yellow is a time out/reflection, orange is a time out/reflection and partial loss of recess, red is a time out/reflection in another classroom and partial loss of recess, and the next step is the office.  For the last few years, I used a sticker system.  If students did not pull any tickets all day, they earned a sticker.  After they got so many stickers they would get a reward.  This year, however, that is clearly not going to work.  So after doing some thinking, I came up with a new system!

Enter... Duck Bucks!
Classroom management with the Robertsons!  Because good behavior makes us happy, happy, happy!

If you can't tell... I LOVE Duck Dynasty! :)

Here is how we use them...
Every day, my students can earn a Duck Buck if they stay on blue all day.  We all know we have those kiddos that rarely stay on blue (or, like at most schools, green) all day.  But I still wanted them to be able to feel successful with their behavior and earn Duck Bucks.  So, I carry Duck Bucks with me all day in my special "wallet".  When I see a student that is setting a good example for their peers, being extra well behaved, etc., I give them a Duck Buck to go put in the "pocket".  
Each student has a pocket to keep their Duck Bucks in.  When I give them a Duck Buck during class time, they quietly and quickly go put it in their pocket.  I was afraid it would be disruptive but they are so excited to earn the Duck Buck and get back to earn more, they go quickly and quietly to put them away.  On certain days, students can exchange their Duck Bucks (5 ones for one 5, etc.)  They love it.  

So what do they do with their Duck Bucks?  Well, we have come up with different rewards that the students can save up for.  This Friday my students got to count up all their Duck Bucks and decide if they wanted to spend their Duck Bucks on a reward.  They had so much fun and were so excited to see how many Duck Bucks they've earned.  My students feel so proud when they earn a Duck Buck and all of my students have been earning a lot of them.  The Duck Bucks have been amazing for my kiddos that are a bit challenging in the behavior department.  

If you want to try Duck Bucks in your classroom, you can get them at my TPT shop!

Now for the winners of my birthday giveaways!  

a Rafflecopter giveaway a Rafflecopter giveaway

Congrats ladies!  I will be e-mailing you soon!