Thursday, August 25, 2011

Day 2 - Moving In

     Today was the second day to work in my new classroom at my new school.  I walked in the door and was still overwhelmed.  There were boxes everywhere!  I finally decided to start moving some boxes and clear a table.  That helped.

     I had a friend coming to help and she brought a friend of hers to help.  They were a wonderful help to have.  It took us awhile to figure out what to do, but we finally decided to move all of the boxes to one corner of the room so that we could figure out where the furniture would go.  The room looks so much better now.  We figured out where most of the furniture would go.  Thank you Christie and Christie for all of your help!

     Now, the fun begins of unpacking and figuring out where things should go.  Hopefully, I'll get to the point that I can work on the bulletin boards.  I have ideas of things I've seen on other teachers' blogs or things I have bought on TpT, but I wonder if I'll have time to make these things.  Some things may come after school begins.

     Here are some pictures from today.  Look at yesterday's post to see the difference.

I'm not as far as a lot of you out there in the Blog World because actually teachers don't report to work until next Tuesday.  I am here a week early since I have a huge job ahead of me.  The kids begin school on Wednesday, September 7th.

I did find out that I have a document camera, but I don't have a Smartboard, as I was told.  I am excited about the document camera since I've never had anything but an overhead.  My friends set it up for me.

    I know everyone is putting up pictures of their classrooms today.  This is what mine looks like so far, but it's nothing to brag about.

     I will keep posting each day so that you can see my progress, although, I only have 3 followers so far.


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Moving In

     I've spent the past two days moving into my new classroom in my new school.  I am so thankful for all of the help I received from teacher friends from my old school and their families.  It's amazing how many boxes I have!  At the end of the year, some things were packed that I probably would have thrown out, but because they were doing construction in my old school I had to get out quickly.  Hopefully, I'll have time to go through things.

     There are boxes everywhere!  I had some time today to work on the room alone.  I was so overwhelmed and didn't know what to do.  First, I need to figure out where to put the furniture, but everything is covered with boxes.  I started moving some of the boxes to create space.  Hopefully, I'll be able to figure out where the student tables will go, my desk, and the classroom book corner.

     Tomorrow, a friend who is also a teacher, is coming to help me and she's bringing a friend of hers. They are going to help me arrange my room.  I'm looking forward to their help.  They helped me two years ago when I moved from a portable to a classroom in the building.  It will be good to have some help.  Another teacher friend has offered to help on Friday.  I need all the help I can get.  My official first day of work is next Tuesday.  I'm hoping getting an extra week will help me to be ready on time.

     Here are some pictures I took after everything was moved in.  It shows how much work I have ahead of me.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Finally . . . The Inside of the School

On Friday, I called my new school to see if I can see the inside of my classroom.  The lady that I talked to was very friendly and told me to come over.  I went and just looked around.  It gave me an idea of what I was moving in to.

The classroom is an odd shape.  It is in a Pod - seven classrooms are around a circle.  The classroom has some short walls.  It's hard to describe the shape.  There aren't many bulletin boards.  One large one and two small ones on both sides of the white board.  I hope I can do everything I want on those boards.  I may be using the walls.  There are two bathrooms in the room.  A friend showed me that these are shared with the room next door.  I wonder how that works out?  The teacher's desk is large with room for a computer.  There are different things for the students to sit at:  rectangle tables, two tables that make a hexagon when put together, and a few desks.  Hmm.  That will be interesting to figure out.

I went back today with a friend.  We loaded our cars up with things to drop off.  It seemed like a lot of things, but there are so many more sitting in a friend's garage.  I'm so glad that over the years I have bought my own bookshelves.  There was only one bookshelf in the room.  I think I have 4 bookshelves with 3 shelves and two with 2 shelves.  I probably will use the smaller ones for my things.  This will help me to create my library.  I have so much to do at home right now that I won't be able to do anymore this week.  I'm hoping to move everything else in next week.  Then I will begin to really work and put the room together.

I feel better now that I have seen the room and moved over a few of my things.  I didn't take any pictures, but I will eventually.  It's more work moving into a new classroom, coming up with a good design or layout. I will get some friends to help me come up with ideas on how to arrange things.


Sunday, August 7, 2011

Lesson Plans

I've been reading several teacher's sample lesson plans.  I feel it will be so different to write up plans for first grade.  I need to get started on a template for 1st grade.  I've been working on one today.  I should be doing other things, but I just want a form.  I know it will need to be changed once I know when PE, Music, and Media are being taught.  Oh well!  This might work and take less time once school begins.  I always find those days of getting the classroom ready don't allow for much time in writing up the lesson plans.

It takes more space to write up first grade plans.  I still need 4 pages, but I can't fit the standards on them.  I'll have an extra page for the standards.  I actually think I might like that.  I'm trying to fit in Morning Work, Morning Meeting, Writer's Workshop, Reader's Workshop, Read to Self, Theme / GLAD, Math, Author Study, and some extra routines.  I think I have it.  It's so hard to fit everything in.  The Word Work, I believe, will be something the students work on during Reader's or Writer's Workshop.  I'm not quite sure yet.  I will teach and review the words orally with the kids during the Morning Meeting.  This is something I need to read more about.

I want to incorporate Author's Study.  Last year my 3rd graders loved learning about authors.  What better way to help the kids become better readers and writers!  I need to pursue and find which author's would be good to study.

I think I'll also have a Daily Lesson Plan to write out specifics for what to do.  This will sure help me since I know little about teaching first grade.  I think it will also be useful when I have a substitute.

I'd attach a blank copy, but that's something I still need to learn how to do on here.  I need to get back to another computer class this week and ask questions like that.  Once I think I have a good form, I'll attach it here when I know how. 


Thursday, August 4, 2011

More Changes

This next school year I will be going through all kinds of changes.  On June 1st, I found out that I am being transferred to another building due to the budget cuts.  Later in the month I was told that I would teach first grade.  I panicked!  I know very little about teaching first graders.  I have taught for 16 years plus I began with several years as a substitute until I could get a teaching job since budgets were tight at that time.  I started in second grade and spent about 7 years in that grade.  One of those years was in a 1st/2nd grade blend.  Then, I began teaching older kids.  I have spent the last 9 years with 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders and really enjoy those ages.  This will be a year full of learning as I learn how to teach 1st graders.  I am so thankful for all of the blogs out there where I can get ideas and see what others are doing.  I also have been buying many things on TpT to help.  I just discovered the blogs and TpT about 3 months ago.

Today I had an recorded phone call from my new principal.  Today, I know, was his first day back to work.  He is transferring to a middle school in the district.  So, right now my school doesn't have a principal.  One more change to deal with.  The district did cut all of the elementary vice-principals.  Maybe they would hire one of them back, however, I know that two already have another job.  One more change to deal with.  At least everyone at the school will be going through this one, not just me.