I got new school stuff!!!
Posted by krystalmills
Picture it. You’re at Staples (just fill in your favorite teacher store here). You can smell the Crayola…and you know that you’re home! Alright, I know that you all get excited about colorful post-its, new Sharpies and fancy bulletin board borders too.
Well, I decided to share about some treasures that I purchased on my yearly trek to Scholar’s Choice – the closest “Teacher Store” to me. It’s not even close, really. Out of province, actually;) But every year, for the last number of years, when my hubby and I take a trip across the Confederation Bridge, leaving little ole’ Prince Edward Island behind, I have to add “The Teacher Store” as I call it, to our itinerary (even though, ironically – we’re usually there when school has just ended).
I got some great “school stuff” this year and I thought I’d share some of the highlights with you so that my poor husband doesn’t have to pretend that he cares what I bought for the new school year;)
One thing that I would really like to improve this year in my classroom, is my organization. I look into other teachers’ classrooms and they are like well-oiled machines. I don’t feel like I’m there, yet. I’m still figuring out what I like, what helps me and my students and what maybe I thought was going to work, but didn’t. Right now, all of my math manipulatives are in labelled, blue totes. I’ve decided that it annoys me, though, to not be able to see what’s in the totes! So, I bought these clear bins at Costco - nothing special about them – just regular storage bins. But they’re clear. Okay, so this is where Hubby would start to tune out;)
Also in this picture is one of my faves to help organize my students – plastic page protectors. For some reason, even my more careless students could hang on to things that were in page protectors. It’s almost as if they think, “Well if this piece of paper is important enough for her to pass out protectors to everyone – I better not lose it!” Works for me! I give them out for the REALLY important papers or to store their work in that may be in progress (post cards, posters) things that aren’t in a scribbler and that shouldn’t be hole punched. It may sound silly, but for certain students – they’ve been a lifesaver. Even if they don’t go and put them into the binder, at least the paper is less likely to get lost in the protector.
Finally, I got 3 new pocket charts to help me organize some of my paper work. I am someone who always has stacks on my table up front and it drives me crazy! I’ve realized it’s only because I haven’t come up with a better plan for myself than the filing cabinet. I need an in-between filing place until the papers get where they need to be. Rather than taking up more table space, I’ve decided to use the wall space for filing. So, I plan to use these hanging pocket charts on my bulletin board up front for referral forms, lunch forms, tracking sheets, bus notes, parent notes to me, school newsletters, extra hand outs. I bought three, because I may also use them for math centers and games. I’m very excited at the prospect of having a tidier work area at the front of my room. I’m no different from my students. I need the tools to be organized and then I’ll be able to do a better job!
I love this desk-top map that I found, as well. Our first unit in Math is Coordinate Geometry and so I have big plans for this little map to use in a center on plotting points. (In hindsight, I should have gotten more than one…) It’ll also be perfect for Social Studies activities/centers that I may do throughout the year.
Also for Social Studies, I found EXCELLENT posters on Canadian Government which are aligned with my curriculum. Of course they’re not just posters – they also have activities on the back for students and short pieces to read, as well. Again – stations!!!
Finally, for Social Studies, I found History of Canada glossy magazine-type resources that have just the MOST important information, with lots of color and pictures and then questions on the back of the resource. I got two of these, because I’ll always have modified students, or those on IEPs who will really benefit from the way this information is laid out. I also have the option to incorporate these resources into centers, but I see using them with students who can’t handle all of the information from the regular textbook and who are on their own plan.
And finally, to add a little color and fun, check out my CUTE bulletin board borders and value pack of sharpies and pens! Why do I get excited over office supplies? I don’t know – but I don’t think I’m alone!
This year I got Birthday certificates to use in my class and they also come with tear off bookmarks – which I thought was a fun little extra. I also purchased my first “cootie catchers” for elements of a narrative – fun, include the main points that I need to cover, colorful… all in all a good buy!
Okay, I’m done sharing for now. I got some other great stuff too, that I’ll share another day.
So tell me, what’s your guilty pleasure when you go back to school shopping for your classroom? What do you get super excited about? Please share, so that I don’t feel lonely surrounded by my markers, posters and other goodies;)