It’s hard to believe that it’s back to school time…and there is so much to do to get our classrooms and our “selves” ready for the rush of the first days of school. I thought I’d get back into the swing of things with a quick back to school photo show! Once things settle down, I promise to get back into the routine of real blogging! Although this post isn’t a real classroom “reveal”, I thought I’d let you in on a few things I have been working on. Let’s roll!
Planning Ahead to Welcome Students by Name
First of all, my door! I have “hidden” the names so you can’t see all the fun fonts–but you get the idea. These colors make me so happy!
I wanted to have a bulletin board ready for “Meet the Teacher”. This is typical for me–but I usually just write our units/concepts on sentence strips. I really wanted to highlight that we are going to be focusing on cooperative work and collaboration this year and came up with this. I’m pretty happy with how it turned out.
Like last year, I am using my collaborative name tags. I changed the backgrounds on mine, but last year’s version is still available in my store. I can form groups according to the background color, the dice color, the numbers on the dice, and the colored triangles in the corner–all groups of different sizes. It makes it SO easy to get students working with EVERYONE right away!
|(Just click the image if you want to see more about these)|
Sometimes just having something in their hands makes it easier for some students to share. I actually got a new critter to add to the basket during our trip to Baltimore, so I will be adding a white seal soon!
Growth Mindset Activities
I cannot WAIT to dig into the “growth mindset” activities I have planned. Apparently I hit a nerve with many because tons of you have bought my bulletin board/lesson idea resource over the years–and I keep adding more to it! I’m starting the year with it, but it would be a great thing to do at ANY point to help students learn about how to reframe their thinking to be more growth-minded. It DOES make a difference!
We start our year of writing with a “launch” unit–we review personal narratives and small moment stories, but my big push is to make sure we develop some good writing “behaviors”.
These are the 6 points I stress as we complete our launching unit. (If you are looking for some help with narrative writing, CLICK HERE!)
|Here is how we start working on narratives.|
Helping Students Be Independent
Even though the students seem to learn our schedule after the first week, I am not so fast! I make my schedule cards large enough that I can read them from across the room so I know where we are going! Our specials meet at the same time every day so I don’t need the times–for scattered people like me, that is such a relief! I also love that I have a centralized location for lunch menus, news, and anything else that helps students be independently able to access information.
With only a few days until the students arrive, I have my travel folders stuffed and ready to go!
My math zone is ready to roll…games are made, manipulatives are ready for students to use, word problems are ready, and a whole BUNCH of challenges await my fourth graders!
|Word problems can be found HERE|
So there you have it–a sneak peek at a few places in my room…and a few other tidbits! Watch for more classroom shots as the next week unfolds! If you are starting this week–I wish you all the best!