Saturday, August 17, 2013

Teacher Week Tips and Tricks & B2S SALE!!!

Friday?  Already?  It's hard to believe how quickly this week has flown by, but here it is - Friday night...time for my number one tip for teachers:

On the first day of school, when all the kiddos arrive, all excited to see their friends, unpack all their new supplies, and choose a desk beside their best bud, let them do 2 out of 3.  Which ones?  I always let my kids pick their own seats the first day.  We immediately get seeing friends out of the way and I immediately know who needs to be separated.

But that leaves all those lovely new supplies!  I have a big sign up that says, "Find a seat, begin coloring the cover sheet (I hand out black and white packets, not color) of your Back to School Packet, and DO NOT UNPACK ANYTHING!"  

This is the real tip.  *I take up every single thing every single student has brought in.*  We do it very systematically while working in those B2S packets.  I call for each student to bring me their crayons.  I label them with their names, hand one box back, and keep the other.  Next, it's notebook paper.  I just take all of that and put it in a big basket.  Markers, composition books, binders, and all the rest follow this same procedure.  I either keep it or label it and give some back.  We set up our binders together, with agendas, a poly two-pocket folder, a little bit of notebook paper, and their Weekly Progress Binder inserts.  

The purpose for all my hoarding? I've taken note, over the years, that if I let kids keep all their new supplies, they are either lost, gone, torn, broken, or written/drawn all over within a week or so.  So, I take it all up, and dole it all out, whenever anyone needs anything.  Not only does it save parents' valuable money in replacing supplies, but the idea of sharing is one I cling to dearly, and because I spend over $1,000 each year on supplies, too, I think of everything as "ours".  Now, if someone has special pencils, or anything not on our supply list, that's different. They keep that - I'm not a total thief!  But a yellow number 2 pencil is a yellow number 2 pencil, and a box of 24 Crayola crayons is a box of 24 Crayola crayons.  Notebook paper is notebook paper, and page protectors, well, you get the idea.  It's just far easier for me, and my students, if I have most everything they need, and they know where it all is, and just get it when they need it!  Plus, I really love my table buckets. I've had them for years (bought at Garden Ridge maybe ten years ago), and they still look good, and work perfectly!
Each bucket goes in a tray, where students can store their work-in-progress folders during the day, and each table has a trash can, so we aren't up every two seconds throwing something away.

Now, about that sale, get your groove on at Teachers Pay Teachers' Annual Back to School Sale THIS WEEKEND!
Thanks to Krista at The Creative Chalkboard for the cute sale sign!
Be sure to check out all the great deals, enter the code BTS13 for an extra 10% off, while you clean out those wishlist items!

Have a great weekend...
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