I’m in a good place with my room. It’s not done. But it’s getting there. I thought that today I would post some pictures and break down my rationale for why I have things the way they are and possible issues that I’m anticipating.
Here’s a wide shot of the room. With 29 students I had to make a choice this year. Do I keep my open library area and make larger desk groups or do I make more smaller desk groups and make the library smaller. I went with the table of 6. Six can be a lot for fifth graders, especially chatty ones. But I like to keep the kids up and moving and I frequently allow some of them to work on the floor or at the round table so I’m hoping it will be ok.
The wall by the door holds the “everything cabinet.” the blue bins have soap, hand sanitizers, kleenex, bandaids, and cleaning supplies. I’m planning on using the top as a water bottle parking station. With the iPads in the classroom this year I don’t want any accidents. The ugly cabinet is where I lock up headphones and other tech related supplies. I usually cover it with magnetic poetry or other magnetic learning fun. The top of this cabinet is where students turn in work and other things for the office. I have a chalkboard quilt my mom made for an inspirational quote and the other board to hold flyers and announcements. That blank space is where I’ll hang our classroom constitution. In the built in shelves I keep all of my “teacher books.” The top two shelves are my professional books and the bins hold instructional picture books organized by purpose. I tried to make a little work area in front of it but I have a feeling that it takes up too much space and will end up getting moved into the hallway. Perhaps I’ll keep the rug and a few pillows.
Yes that’s my desk right there. I don’t really spend a lot of time at it. You can kind of see a little rolling cart next to it. I have a bin for each subject that holds materials for the week and other important teacher stuff. Every year my space gets smaller and smaller. It’s good. Less places to let piles of work collect. The green magazine file is for things I need to do right away and it seems to work well for me. The writing supplies are still by the door, an issue that I brought up in my last post. Oh well. Plus, I still need to do the board behind it. There’s no cork back there, just wall, so it’s a bit time consuming.
Here’s the meeting center/classroom library. I moved the round table away from my area so that I don’t take it over with my stacks of paper. I also really like having it close to the meeting area so that students can sit at the table during lessons. It’s a great way to accommodate the needs of all of my students. I use this table to meet with groups of kids or give students who need a break from their table mates a place to sit.
Here’s a view in the other direction. By positioning the couch in the middle I created a smaller space behind it. This was a major goal for me this year. I was lucky enough to get two new shelves through Donors Choose so I moved all of my non-fiction books to the back wall. The pockets on the wall are actually magnetic pockets where I feature new magazines.
Here’s my little nook behind the couch. I made a bench with some seating cubes. I haven’t done computer labels for the book bins yet but I figure handwritten ones will do for the beginning of the year.
If you have any links to pictures of your classroom environment please post them in the comments!