Monday, September 14, 2015

Sneak a Peek with a Peach: Polka Dot Firsties

Hi!  I'm Liz from Polka Dot Firsties and I'm so excited to be joining the Primary Peach collaborative blog!

Here's a peek inside of my classroom!

This is where my students hand their backpacks.  They put their lunches and water bottles in the bottom cubbies.  I used to label everything with students' name, but I gave that up awhile ago.  I just train the early arrivals (it's aways the same ones) to hang their backpacks on the back hooks so the front hooks stay open for the later students.  

The polka dot curtains hide my monthly boxes.  No sewing involved - just hot glue, ribbon and curtain rods from Big Lots.

You can see how sometimes the center pieces don't make it inside the bin.  #keepingitreal

My not so secret wish is for my firsties to have desks.  But since they don't, my students store their interactive notebooks and Rise and Shine Folders in these cubbies.  I also store construction paper at the bottom of the cubbies so I don't have to run downstairs if I forget to grab it.

There are two bins on top - one for finished work and one for snack.  

I use several aspects of Whole Brain Teaching in my classroom.  You can download a free set of pink polka dot rules {HERE}.

I have the typical clip chart.  I don't use it as much as I use to - I would love to give it up all together, but some of my students still need the visual reminder.

Don't you love those black pocket charts?!?  I got them at Hobby Lobby this summer.  I label the pockets with each student's name and they put their unfinished work in there.  I can easily see who has something to do.

Here's a peak at my math focus wall.  I decided to frame off the area to make it "pop" a little more.  I'm adding our math vocabulary words as we go, so the blank spots will get filled up.  I'll probably run out of room and have to go under the board as well.

You can download the math banner {HERE}.  I just copied it on card stock for that extra pop of color.

Here's a view of the board.  I always have a daily schedule up so they kids don't ask me a zillion times when lunch is.  You can download a free copy {HERE}. I just acquired that chair and it desperately needs a Pinterest makeover!

My desk was a little beat up when I got it, so I covered it with contact paper.  I'm so happy that my desk is finally staying tidy this year.  I'm making every effort to file right away and keep that pile to a minimum.

This is my social studies/science wall.  For September we are studying tall tales and apples.

You can see my glue sponges on the pink file cabinet.  Best. Thing. I've. Ever. Done.
If you need help figuring out pros/cons, check out my post from this summer.

I managed to snag these chevron lights on clearance this summer.  The clock numbers are a freebie from Amy Lemons.  While our curriculum only has us teaching time to the hour and half hour, my firsties ask about the other numbers so why not introduce it?

As you can probably tell from the poster, I teach at a private Christian school. :)  

My Grammar Wall.

I love having stuff like this up and seeing the kids refer to it during the year if they forget a concept.

The back of the room houses my reading area.  The pink buckets on top of the shelves are the literacy stations.  Last summer I organized all of my books according to AR levels and it's been the best help to me.

Up close view of my reading bulletin board.

This is where students sign up to take Accelerated Reader quizzes.  You can see my literacy station rotation too.  A month into school and I still haven't replaced those post-it notes. ;)

Each month my class has a family project where they decorate a template.  The students really love it and I love seeing what they come up with each month.

Below the board are the students' book bins since I do a version of the Daily Five in my classroom.

Thank so much for reading!  Be sure to come back tomorrow for another peek into a Peachy classroom.