Friday, July 22, 2016

Classroom Makeover 2016

Wow! Have you had the moment of realization yet?

The one where you look  up and the calendar says you only have ONE WEEK of summer vacation left?

Because I'm having it. Right now.

There's so much to do! And only one more week to do it.

Shh, don't tell anyone, but I've already been to my room and started setting it up.

That's why I am writing today. I need your help!

This year means some big changes for my little room. We have a new principal, a large grade level, and I'm team teaching for the first time in 23 years.

With the change of students halfway through the day, I thought that seating was going to have to be more of a fluid event. One where the students can be more selective about their seating choices.

A friend had posted on FB that she was trying a Flexible Seating plan this year. I looked into on the internet, Instagram, and Pinterest and thought I would take the plunge.

Here's a few shots of the whole room. Yes, I know. It's tiny. And yep, those are 24 desks put out. But I put the groups into different configurations. There are two groups of 9, a group of 4, and a group of 2. It's all about options, right?

Here is a table I raised to waist high so that they can stand up and work. Those two buckets will be holding student work to be sent home and then have cushioned seats on top to be used as stools. 

Here's all the room I could spare for a whole group area. I got rid of my oversized chair, my easel, and a large rolling bookshelf. Instead I exchanged it for a thin folding chair from Ikea and placing my chart paper on the wall with some Command Hooks. 

I tried to get rid of my teacher's desk, but the custodian tells me that it is a requirement to have one in every room. Boo. So instead I switched out my super small computer table and made my teacher's desk the space for four computers to be set up. 

Here's my area for small groups. I have my regular teacher desk things in the small student desks behind this table. I can put my laptop on there and have it connected to the SmartBoard. 

As for another seating option, I have these kind of like cubby areas for groups to meet and discuss amazing literature this year. My friend, Jennifer Howard gave me this idea too. The little seat cushions were 4 for $7.
To ensure that everyone gets to choose the different options and to cut back on the squabbling, I usually have my reading groups set up into Monday, Tuesday, etc. They will get to pick their 'Comfy spots' on their day.
Okay, so here's where you come in. What else am I missing? How can I make it look more inviting without breaking the bank? Any ideas?? Help!
Remember, I only have ONE WEEK left.
Thanks for your help.

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