Wednesday, September 2, 2015

#2getherwearebetter - Classroom Reveal!!!

It is finally time for me to give you an official tour of my classroom!! I have somehow managed to keep most of my room design under wraps in order to link up with these amazing teachers - boy, has it has been tough! For the first year since I started teaching, I am in the same grade level and room.  I spent my first week back was doing a lot of purging and reorganizing.

Last year, I had a blank wall outside of my classroom door - this year I added an area to hang cute pictures of my kiddos or work that they have completed.   I used a wire photo cable with magnets that I found on amazon.  BEST idea ever!  My kiddo's first day pictures are on it right now.
First Day of Kinder pictures

Welcome to Miss Watson's classroom!

This is my calendar wall - each day we talk about the day, month, number of days in school, the weather, and any special events happening during that month.  Inside the cabinet are games for early finishers, but I have not introduced them yet.  The games are sorted into letter, word, number, and shape games.

My rules and voice meter are posted on the cabinet next to my teacher desk.

My desk is cleaned?!  Its a miracle!  Or are all my papers just placed on the teacher table while I take this picture....  This is where I spend most of my evenings completing ARD paperwork and analyzing data and language samples so I wanted it to feel warm and inviting.  It is LOADED with pictures of my loved ones.

In kindergarten, we call our sight words "star words" (please ignore that I am missing an S).  As we learn new words, I add them to this cabinet and to our word wall (pictured below).

My morning meeting area from the view of a student (I should have taken this picture landscape for the full view).  All of our whole group lessons happen here.  I store most of our supplies behind the big book stand, but I am looking for a better way.  It seems to just be a big mess back there!

My iPad table is directly behind my students sitting at our morning meeting area.  Once we start using the iPads in station rotations, I will have a blog post about my rules and procedures.  Right now, I am waiting to roll out more than just my teacher iPad until I know the kiddos can handle them.

My teacher table is in the middle of the room and behind it, I store all of my guided reading and math teacher table lesson supplies.  

Finally, these are the only 3 computers I have in my room and my empty bulletin board that will soon be filled with wonderful writing!  On these tables, I also have the students' finished baskets so that when they turn things in, they are pre-sorted by student.

This is a panoramic shot from my guided reading table.

This a panoramic shot from my teacher desk.

 I really hope you have enjoyed my classroom tour!  I had a blast decorating and organizing so it made it hard to not post pictures on Instgram all the time ;) but head on over to my Instgram @iteachlanguageinkinder to see future posts about my adventures in teaching deaf/hard of hearing kiddos.

Don't forget to visit the other blogs participating in this link up - I've got a lot of friends with great classroom reveals! Whats your favorite spot in your classroom?  Do you have any suggestions for a way to store all of the curriculum pieces currently behind my big book holder?  Let me know in the comments below!  Talk again soon, friends!

Monday, August 10, 2015

#MondayMadeIt - Teacher Toolbox to match my classroom!

Happy Monday!  I am jumping on the #MondayMadeIt train for the first time with Fourth Grade Frolics.

All of my friends seem to have a teacher toolbox and I wanted to take the plunge a few years ago, but I never did because I wasn't sure what to put in it.  That was my reason.  Ridiculous!   

Well, my local friend Ashley from Teach Create Motivate made her toolbox and labels a few weeks ago for a Monday Made It and it was so bright and cheery!  Go check it out here. Her post inspired me to finally get it together and make my own toolbox.

First, I visited my local hardware store to purchase the toolbox and spray paint.  I went with this 22-drawer bin and the flat black Valspar spray paint.

The second step was the scariest for me because I didn't want to mess it up while spray painting.  It took me another almost 2 weeks to finally work up the courage to spray paint it!  It was one of the easiest things I have ever spray painted.  Took all of 10 minutes to get it looking perfect.

Third, instead of paying for cute labels on TPT, I decided I would make my own.  I used backgrounds that were close enough in pattern and color with my classroom theme so that they would match perfectly.  I printed them on cardstock, hard laminated, and adhered them to the outside of the drawers with double sided tape. 

My toolbox enabled me to clean out TWO drawers in my desk to make room for other things and take the clutter off of the TOP of my desk.  There was a few hiccups when actually placing items in each drawer...not everything fit as well as I had hoped (I didn't measure beforehand), so some modifications occurred and some things are in the drawer diagonally so the drawer will close.  BUT, I am in love and I can't believe I didn't do this sooner because the process was so easy.  

Did you make anything fun today?  Let me know what you made today in the comments below.  Thanks for reading.

Friday, July 31, 2015

We Challenge You: Turn Your BELIEFS into ACTIONS!

A sweet blogger friend of mine, Soney from Sunny Days in School, mentioned to me that With Love From Texas is hosting an education beliefs blog hop and I am excited to share with you my beliefs.  I know this blog post will take me no time at all to compose, because I know exactly why I do what I do. 

...or so I thought!

As I struggled to put my beliefs into words, it became clear I had not clearly articulated my beliefs since the educational philosophy essays I wrote during college. Now, after a great deal of brainstorming, soul searching, and revision, I am finally sure I can express them perfectly.  Without further ado, these are the education beliefs you will see in action when you visit my classroom:

This has been more of a challenge than I originally anticipated, but I am so glad I took the time to complete it, as it has enabled me to step back and focus on the upcoming school year.  I printed this poster and plan to hang it on my desk at school as a constant reminder of my beliefs, so I can stay focused on what is important to me and remember to put my students and their education first.

What are some of your education beliefs?  Let me hear them in your comments below and then hop on over to Keeping Life Creative to read her beliefs about reading education.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

All about this Kinder Teacher - Kinder Tribe Linky

My first blog post! I am so excited to bring you great content from my experiences teaching Deaf/Hard of hearing students. My goal with this blog is to share with you language-rich activities you can do with any student, iPad activities you can use at home or in your classroom to promote language, and connecting with other teachers to share ideas.

I will start by introducing myself in the best way of all: the Kinder Tribe Linky Party!

 My name is Ashleigh and this will be my 4th year teaching, but only my 2nd year teaching in kindergarten.  Prior to Kinder, I taught 4 year old Deaf/Hard of hearing students, and before that - I taught in a preschool program for children with disabilities.  

I can't live without my friends, my family, and the gym.  I love the Crossfit culture and enjoy the community that comes along with it.  

My favoite school supplies are Flair Pens, my Erin Condren Teacher Planner, and the classroom set of iPads I received through a grant!  

Since I teach kinder, I read lots of good picture books and which ones are better than Pete the Cat and the Gerald and Piggie series?  They offer so many opportunities for authentic language!

Greg, from Kindergarten Smorgasboard, is one of my favorite kinder bloggers and I was so honored that he joined me on Instagram with #passionateperiscopeteachers!  Check it out and join us!!

Finally, I love kindergarten because it is such a crucial year/age for language development and watching my students language growth is truly heart warming!  It can be tough some days - but TOTALLY worth it in the end.  Also, I have wanted to teach kindergarten since the day I decided to be a teacher.  My kindergarten teacher was the greatest teacher I ever had and I have such great memories from her class.  I want my students to remember our class like I remember my own kindergarten class.

This turned into a lengthy first post, but I was so excited to share with you!  I can't wait to connect again soon!  Before I leave, I ask that each of you tell me what content you would like to see on my blog! Leave your comments for me and I'll work to bring you what you want.

Thanks for reading!