Sunday, July 18, 2010
Students and their families are able to see their rooms and meet their teachers the afternoon before the first day of school. I have some environmental print labels already up before their visit, but during the first week of school, I ask students what other labels they'd like to have hung up on our word wall and around the room. In addition to their names, they usually ask for : SMART Board, television, globe, floor, wall, alphabet, numbers, puzzles, journals, dress up, speaker, computers, plant, window, and of course, "Mrs. Sommerville."
What items or places do you label in your classroom or school?
~ Don't know what to do with Duplo blocks your children have outgrown? Perhaps you've found an inexpensive set at a yard sale and are wondering if they can be used for more than just fine motor manipulatives- check out Filth Wizardry's **AWESOME** repurposing idea utilizing Duplos and white stickers... brilliant!
~ How do your students use their schools supplies? Do they have their own pencil boxes or are the crayons, scissors, glue and pencils put into shared tubs? There can be some interesting debates over what's developmentally appropriate for young children: having ownership of their crayons, pencils, glue, and personal space (which as most kindergarten teachers know often results in I-have-these-and-you-don't verbal interactions during times when it would be more appropriate for students to be exploring and using curricular vocabulary, concepts, and teamwork) or learning how to share, respect, trade, and negotiate materials and tools without daily replays of my-pencil-is-cooler-than-your-pencil interrupting every activity. Pros and cons: individual pencil boxes take up valuable space; communal tubs not only bank pencils, crayons and scissors, but germs as well. Kiri8 over at Elbows, Knees and Dreams organizes her students' supplies communally but away from desks (I love the environmental print and cuing shapes!).
In my room, materials are shared in baskets left in the center of each table. Some parents like to write their child's name on every single marker, pencil, eraser, etc., and occasionally our supplies must be used in the art room as well. Sets of crayons (out of boxes) are put in our desk baskets with pencils and glue that parents have NOT labeled at the beginning of the year, share and share alike. Their markers are put into individual zip-top plastic bags so they can be carried to and from art class or center activities in our rooms. Watercolor sets, marker sets, and crayon sets used in art class are kept in tubs on our art cart.
As the year progresses, and our sharing manners are in place, I replenish the desk basket supplies with the pencils, erasers and glue that parents have labeled with names. Children love it when their friends recognize their names, pass items around, and try to sort pencils so that all of the "M" names are in one basket, or all of the boys' names can be found on one side of the seating area. Gloating and teasing, no. Sorting, classifying, reading, and sharing, yes.
How do you organize your students' supplies?
Want to pretty-up some pens for your writing center? Lisa shares an easy and fun flower topped pen tutorial at Celebrate CREATIVITY in All its Forms...