Summer Reading

Every summer, I try to do a little bit of reading to get new ideas to use next year.  My favorite so far is Spaces & Places by Debbie Diller.  She has GREAT ideas to organize any classroom space, as well as new ways to think about classroom standards like word walls, classroom libraries and listening centers.

Some of my favorite ideas are:

  • Organize children's books by theme, topic or author in magazine boxes.  They take up less space on a shelf than the plastic boxes I use now.
  • Paint the back of a bookshelf with magnetic paint, then add a coat of chalkboard paint.  This can be used as a chalkboard and also a place for children to use magnetic letters.
  • Use a pegboard to hang word rings.  They will be both visible and out of the way.
  • Write one letter of the alphabet on 26 library pockets.  Post the pockets on the wall or on the back of a shelf in alphabetical order.  You can now keep sight words, vocabulary words or phonics cards by letter so that kids know exactly where to find them.
  • Store big books in a tall plastic laundry basket with a lid.  They are out of the way and will not get dusty or bent.  You can also attach a container of pointers to the outside of the basket.
  • Kindergarten word walls should be close to the ground so that children can manipulate words.  Magnetic or velcro word walls allow children to take words on and off, and allow words to be added easily.
  • When you are ready to take down an anchor chart to make space for a new one, take a photo of it, print it on 8.5 x 11" paper and place it in a binder plastic sleeves.  Now children can still use the anchor chart and you have space on the wall... also great for giving you ideas for next year!


Ms.M said...

I LOVE this book. I pull it out every summer before I return in August to refresh me on organizing my class.

Ms. M
Ms.M's Blog
A Teacher's Plan

Tyron Shadwick said...

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