Tuesday, August 14, 2012


 I've never needed a ton of sleep, even through my pregnancy I could get by with about 5 hours a night. Lately, I'm averaging about 3 hours per night. Seriously, I don't know how I am functioning at all. But, here I am...10PM just finished cleaning bottles, working on math assessments and rubrics, oh, and the all too important blogging :0)

I had some focus today. I unpacked, unpacked, and unpacked all my math and literacy centers, hung up my long weird bulletin board in the hall, labeled cubbies, typed out and printed my welcome letters, organized 3 big ole boxes of books into Fountas and Pinnell levels, and walked to the office a zillion times looking for supplies that once I got there (after seeing and talking to people in the hall) had forgotten what I needed, over and over and over. All in all a pretty good day.

Here are some pics...
The famous Pinterest inspired crate chairs, which will more than
likely get me into hot water with Scary Maintenance Guy...
"Are these flammable?"

My fire chairs filled with highly flammable leveled readers.
Took FOREVER to organize by level, but I felt soooo good afterward!

I've had some questions about how I organize my library for my classroom. When I got into my room, there was no rhyme or reason to the organization of the books, so the first thing I did was take an inventory, then I wanted to determine what the purpose was...did I want them all organized by level or theme. I chose theme. These are books that students have access to everyday. I wanted them to find the books/characters they love, quickly.

The next thing I did was create book bin labels with matching labels. Each book has a label that is displayed on the front cover. This allows students to just match the pictures. My bins are EL Cheapo! I bought ice cube bins from walmart. They work perfectly for my ick shelving. The bins that have LOTS of books are rhyming-repition-song/fiction animals/non fiction animals, and insects and spiders. These books are in dishwashing tubs again from the store that I loathe....Walmart.

The next picture is mainly literacy centers. These are the first centers that I teach. They are my "staples." They include Read the Room, font sort, magnetic word building, stamp the alphabet, do a dot letters, chalkboards....there are TONS of them. I teach them throughout September. Then when we start doing Stations, students work on more thematic centers, if and when they finish, each group has a choice of 4 staple centers to work on. This prevents I'm done, I'm done, I'm done.

These are math centers.

Every bin has a picture on it. There is also a picture on the shelf where the bin goes. I just got tired of my kiddos putting things away wherever they could find space. It made me crazy!

Alright, I am officially tired. Here's hoping I catch some Zzzzz's tonight! I haven't decided if I am going in tomorrow or not, guess you'll have to check back tomorrow. Thanks for reading!


  1. That looks so good! Props to you that you got all that done in one day. Awesome for you!!!

  2. Love your classroom! I am having a giveaway if you would like to visit! :)
    Crayons and Curls

  3. I love the idea of putting the picture on the shelf... One of those things I should have thought of myself! Thanks for sharing!

  4. I have the same crate stools with fabric as you. I had to spray the fabric with a certain type of fire retardant spray. We have some in our janitor closet at school, so maybe you do also! Everything looks great! :)

  5. You crack me up (thanks I need that) I too don't sleep but no baby to blame....I too loath Walmart.....I seriously am going to get a shirt that says I survived shopping at Walmart.....HATE that place, but when it is one a few what can you do.....Love the room, my coworker used ice cube bins too!

  6. I LOVE your labels. Will you share your source for them? Spent 6 hours on a Saturday trying to get the room set up. Haven't even started organizing books yet! Yikes!

  7. Yes, will you? Or if they're yours, will you sell them? I am actually sitting here making similar labels for similar bins and would LOVE to save myself some time! Your room looks great!

  8. I can share them, but I have to buy the DJ Inkers commercial license first. I am thinking I will, just have to work out the numbers first :)

  9. As a fanatical organizer, a dude who does not like it when things are put in the wrong spot, and a fellow-Walmart despiser, I really enjoyed this post and your organizational skills and techniques. Pretty pumped up for the new year. Nice work. Nick