Monday, 30 January 2012

Setting up my classroom

Exhausted, tired, need to sleep!!!! 
But instead I decide to blog a new post about my first 2 days setting up my classroom. It has been a very exciting, stressful and crazy process- but at least my room is now starting to look half decent.

I really never realised how much effort it took in setting up a classroom, but now that I have done my first room, hopefully it will be easier in the years to come (hopefully!?!)

So yesterday morning I went in with a car full of things, walked into the classroom and started setting up my tables and chairs, unpacking resources and then unloading all of my things. Then back in today to make a display, and do lots of little things.

Anywho pictures speak 1000 words so please take a look....

A few different views from my room

My birthday display, just want to add a title and some ribbon to the bottom of the balloons! Might also redo a few flowers as they curled and collapsed in the 35+ heat in Melbourne.

My bday pencils- see other post about how I made them 

My teacher desk- very happy, have lots of room and large cupboards behind it!

Got this great organiser of amazon. The kids are going to put their completed work sheet in their folders and any sheets that are not finished outside their folders so they know what unfinished work they have

My chair!

Love my task board, just need to get some pictures for activities throughout the day (and being really pedantic, I want to reprint the kids names in a diff colour for the reading groups)

The start of my reading display! 

Prayer table

 Great letters- I got them from delawarecountymoms

Love vista print, got lots of great things for free including this sign. Just made a wordle and added it!

Made a behaviour clip chart. Got the idea from teach-a-roo

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Classroom ICT tools

I wanted to compile a list of some great web tools to use in the classroom. The ones that I have either used, or have heard and seen are the following:

Prezi is a great site that allows you to make presentations. The idea is the same as powerpoint, but the presentations that you can make are more interesting and visually dynamic.

Glogster is a site that allows you to create online multimedia “posters”. You can add text, pictures, videos, links and more

Wallwisher is like a big pinboard and you can add “sticky notes” to it. I have seen examples where over the school holidays students go on and stick notes up about what they have been doing on their holidays.

I am sure most people have heard of wordle, it is a site where you can create word clouds.

Tagxedo is another version of wordle, however you can create shapes with your clouds.

Xtranormal allows you to create an animated movie. You can choose two characters, type in what you would like them to say and add movements.

Zui is like youtube for kids. It has online games, videos and websites.

Photopeach is a program where you can create a slideshow and add different things such as text, music etc.

Voicethread allows you to create recordings, where you can add your voice to pictures and videos.

Memorize allows you to create online “tests”, where you can fill in 2 columns and students can match them up.

Blabberize is a fun site where you can add a picture of a person or animal, add your voice and the mouth in the picture moves along with it.

Bubblus is a tool where you can create concept maps.

As I use them in the classroom, I will add some examples to share ideas of how to use them. 

If you have used any of these please comment on how you have used them or what ideas you have for use in the classroom. 

If you have any other great ICT tools, please also comment with them and I can add them to the list. 

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Magnetic letters and numbers

Some advice for pre-service teachers- start collecting things when you see them. About a year ago I found some magnetic letters and numbers from aldi for about $3 per box (I only wish now I had bought more!)

Well now that I am about to start teaching (and through some great ideas on pinterest), I have found some great uses for them already which I will definitely implement into my classroom. One idea is to use cooking trays as magnetic boards.

This will be a great way for students to
- practice their spelling words
-spell/write a new or interesting word they see while reading
- to practice making sentences
- for practicing sums (with the numbers)

What other ideas could you use these for????

If you can't find these magnetic letters and numbers anywhere, don't fret- you can make your own (which I will also be doing). I found this amazing way to make your own letter magnets on Mama Jenn, just click on the link and you can make your own. 

It will be interesting to see which other things that I have collected over the last few years come in handy throughout the year and which ones are never used....

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Birthday pencils

I got this great idea (from lesson plan diva) to give the students birthday pencils for their birthdays, and put them in a flower pot and write their names of flower templates.

I bought a flower pot from bunnings, a styrofoam ball from riot, pencils that said happy birthday/happy birthday to you from amazon, already had some crape paper and coloured paper. 

1st I trimmed the styrofoam ball to fit into the pot, I then sharpened each pencil to push through the ball. I placed black sparkly crape paper on top of the ball and pushed the pencils through that to stick into the ball. 

Next I found a flower in google images, and added it into powerpoint. I added a text box and wrote each students name and birthday in a different slide, and then printed 4 per page. 

Next, using some scrapbooking paper I made this happy birthday label to stick on the side....
and wahlah!!! I now have a birthday present to give to each child- ready for the year!

Sunday, 15 January 2012

Morning meeting calendar

I found a great site, Mama Jenn, that had a great calendar for morning meetings. I decided to recreate one for my classroom and change a few things for my needs. (click on the Mama Jenn link for original calendar).

I decided to keep the day, month and year (like Mama Jenn)- however I decided for the date to have proper dates instead of numbers. In Australia, our date goes day/month/year, so I also decided to put them in that order on my board. 

I got these cute season and weather cards from Mrs Pancake

I decided to add on a question of the week to get my students thinking, wondering and using their imaginations. I have about 45 questions and each Monday I will ask one and the students can discuss their answer with a partner. Each day during the week for a few minutes we can discuss this question, add further questions to the topic and even extend it to a writing session. 
I typed these questions up and printed them. To get all questions click on the following link

Like Mama Jenn, I decided to keep how many days have we been at school because I think that is a great idea to help students practice their place value on a daily basis.

Thats about it, again- not my original idea, but adapted it to my needs. 

Saturday, 14 January 2012

Noise monitor

I found the following noise-o-meter and decided to colour it in and laminate it. This will go on my board and before I send the kids to do their work, we will discuss what noise level is appropriate. I will assign a noise monitor for each table to keep track of their tables noise levels.

I found this on the following link:

Table top organisers and a freebie

I needed to get something for the tables in my classroom for all their stationary. I got $2 baskets from a $2 shop, got a pack of 10 plastic cups from target and some ribbon. Using double sided tape I put the ribbon on the cups. I then created labels for the cups and will stick them on when I go into my classroom (as I am not 100% sure what I will be needing).

Here is a picture for the printable for the labels that I made (have not figured out yet how to add a document- any help??- will add when I do)
There was also another few labels that had highlights, sharpeners/rubbers and rulers- again will add when I figure out haha (love figuring out new stuff- except when I can't!)

I think I may have figured it out... lets see how it goes (click on the following link)


Welcome to my first blog. I am going to be starting at my new second grade job (for the new school year) in about 2.5 weeks.... eeeek! So many things to do.
Here is a list of the things that I am currently making to get ready for my new classroom (stay tuned for pictures)
- Morning meeting calendar (day, date, month, year, days at school, calendar, weather, seasons, I wonder questions)
- Birthday display (including paper balloons with birth dates and pencils in a pot as presents)
- Behaviour management display (stay tuned for pictures)
- Noise level monitor
- Table top stationary organisers
- My daily routines (including times, literacy and math groups)
- Names for tables, hooks, tubs, book tubs, line partners...
- Where our class is poster (places in the school our class might have gone if not in classroom)
- Where a student may have gone (student can put their name where they have gone, i.e. toilet, office....)

This is most of what I am currently making, will post up pictures when I am done. Any ideas of other things I can be making would be great!