Saturday, March 22, 2014

Woohoo! Wahpah!


No, I'm not headed to Daytona (a la Joey in '81), but I am heading to Austin for my BACHELORETTE PARTY later this week! I cannot wait for some good food, awesome music, and fun with all my girls!

This past week was parent/teacher conference week. I felt much better about these Spring conferences, having had the experience of Fall conferences under my belt. I kept expecting the proverbial "other shoe" to drop, as each conference continued to go smoothly throughout the week. Fortunately, I finished my conferences on Thursday (and into Spring vacation) on a VERY positive note.

With eleven weeks of school left (yes, ELEVEN!), it is not surprising that our classroom supplies are dwindling. We've officially run out of blue paint and only have a couple of boxes of pencils left!!!  I organized our supplies at the beginning of the year so that at each table, there is a pencil box with 4-5 pencils (depending on how many kids sit at the table), a couple of pencil sharpeners, and two large erasers. Recently, children have been complaining that kids are taking pencils from other tables and putting them into their own tables' pencil boxes. This doesn't surprise me, as our class seems to constantly misplace pencils.

Color coding to the rescue!

 I put a strip of colored tape on the pencils. The colored tape corresponds with a table. If children find a pencil on the floor or somewhere else in the classroom, the colored tape will tell them what table's pencil box to return it to. Now, getting the kids to actually clean up is a whole other story....but hopefully this strategy will at least keep them from fighting over pencils!

NEWS ALERT: We have had a string of lunch thefts in my classroom!

At my school, children leave their lunches in their backpacks and get them out when it is time to eat. Recently, we have had THREE incidents where children are finding the lunches in their backpacks opened, with food stolen or even bitten into and put back! GROSS! Unfortunately, since the cubby room is out of teacher/student sight-lines (in a breakout room right before the entrance to the classroom), it is not really monitored for thieves!

I decided to buy a large plastic bin to place within plain sight (next to my desk), where kids now put their lunches every morning. It has been over a month since I instituted "The Lunch Box Box", and so far, no lunch tampering! YAY!

I am SO TIRED of asking "Who's is this?" when students return work with no names! I instituted a "No Name Work" folder that lives at the white board:

 When kids cannot find a worksheet that should have been returned to them, they now know where to check for it! Efficiency!

Finally, Spring colds are popping up everywhere it seems. A couple of weeks ago, I had my first sick day (spent sleeping, drinking tea, and sleeping...) I am very lucky, because since I have an assistant teacher, I never really have to worry about sub plans :) Still, it was so nice to get this lovely gift from my students when I came back to the classroom:

What teacher wouldn't love a "get well" apple?

Anyway, I am over my cold, and I am ready to enjoy my vacation! I hope that when we return from break April 1st, it will actually be Spring :) 

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