Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Back into the swing of things

Today's really the first day that I've felt really back into the rhythm of school. Which is really ridiculous, since today was an awkward schedule (assembly day) and nothing seemed to go right, but maybe that's what made it seem normal. I wanted to post some of my pictures of my new room, just so you can see what I've been up to. 

This is what I arrived to the first workday - empty space and lots of boxes. I'm math department chair this year, so I got the privilege of unpacking all the math supplies for our brand new school. I also had to engrave 120 calculators - which took FOREVER. 

 Ok - this is the view from the door, and this is pretty close to what it looks like today, although I've since added scrapbook paper onto the cabinet for our "Bragging Rights" wall. 

I LOVE LOVE LOVE my graphing wall! I'll post an in-depth tutorial on how I made this, but I love it and it's great to be able to reference this during lessons, and I can't wait to use it for centers this year!

Envelopes for my three classes Mastery Skill Levels - see my previous post here
Each class has different topics, and I'll post the new lists, as well as templates for the envelopes (yes I made them myself) and the number labels. 

Back corner - bins from the dollar store that hold game supplies (dice, player markers, etc), erasers for the dry erase sleeves, and index cards. 

So now I just wanna brag - we got CHARGING calculators!!!! No more batteries!!!

Did I mention the color screens and the app for mixed number operations?!?!
Even my math-hater students have been geeking out over these calculators! 

Back wall, where I post grades, and the bins where I sort their ISN page materials and student files.

Laminated color cardstock taped together = dry erase table of contents for each subject!

Each class has 2 bins. One has files labeled 1-100 for their ISN page materials. Since I do a new ISN each 6 weeks, we don't get past 100 pages very often. The other bin is for their student files, where their tests and quizzes and SBG materials are kept.

Dry erase markers, highlighters, markers, and pens all sorted by color. 
This is also where I keep the bins for their ISN supplies (stacked at the end of the day). Each group gets 1 purple bin and 1 silver bin, which stack inside one another. The purple one holds scissors/gluesticks/etc for each group member, and they use the silver one for trash, then empty it at the end of class. 

This is my system for papers that they turn in - each bin has 3 folders, one for each subject area.

Absent kid system - they get a small paper out of their class's envelope that states what pages they missed and if there's anything outside of the notebook to make up. 

Phone prison - this is just the bottom half of a show organizer that I cut up, then covered the raw edges with black tape. 

For open house, this was on the board as the parents walked in - all I did was write supplies on post-its, and replenish as it grew low (I had some generous parents this year!)

Primary Board - this has since changed to a vertical setup, since it gave me more room to write the warmup. 
I give 3 warm-up questions per day, and the students respond on a weekly page that I collect as a quiz grade at the end of the week. This is also where I check their homework and give them a stamp on their punch pass. The warm-up sheet is available here
The labels on the board are also available for free in black and white, but they're easy to edit in word to be colorful. 

Let me know what you think!!


  1. Love the organization! I know this post is old but would love to mimic the envelopes for mastery skills posters. In your post you mention that you would post a tutorial but I can't seem to find anything. Thanks.

    1. Hi! I'm glad someone appreciates the organization - it just keeps my brain at ease. :)
      As far as the skills tutorial, it's here:
      The envelopes only hold index cards with questions matching each topic. (The post goes through how to set up the system, as well as creating the list of topics that would match the index cards.) If there's a different part of the process that's missing, let me know - it may just be sitting in my drafts folder.

  2. I love color too! I followed the post on "almost sbg". Great info. How did you create the mini pockets/envelopes on your poster? It looks laminated too?

    1. I printed out this template on colored paper:

      Then I taped the back of the envelopes to a posterboard, then put the entire thing through the big laminator at my school. It laminates the pockets closed, so I took an exacto knife to slice the pockets back open.