Yes, I know it’s only July but there are so many of us in Blog Land that have already started prepping for back to school. A teacher’s brain NEVER stops!
So once I started seeing fellow blogger friends post pictures on their blogs, Facebook and Instagram of new things they have purchased for their classroom… boy did I start drooling! It wasn’t until LAST week that I was able to truly start making purchases because I didn’t know where next year was leading me.
I am still nervous to say that I am beyond ecstatic about what next year brings me and boy is it going to keep me on my toes. If you had told me when I first started teaching 2004 that I would be starting my 10th year as a Special Education Life Skills Teacher I wouldn’t have believed you. Heck, my husband told me 4 years ago that he thought it was PERFECT for me and I didn’t believe him.
Well enough of that… and on to the SHOPPING and UFOs…
Started last week with a few scores from Walmart and the best of them was these crates! I am going to use these for Calm Down Kits for each of my students using my bloggy friend Melissa’s amazing resource. I need to add labels to the outside of the crates with ribbon that has their names on them (once I get their names) so they can be customized for each student.
A few different places (Target Dollar Spot and Dollar Tree) and I was able to get a few goodies for my Calm Down Kits. I do plan to rotate things throughout the year based on the needs of my students. I know that nothing works for all of them and nothing will be a given to work all the time.
As I am working to start organizing things that I can at home, I scored some great new file folders, a composition book, paperclip for my desk and of course some colorful masking tape (for my board) and Duck Tape that I can’t remember what I bought it for again. HAHA! I’m sure I have pinned it!
So the start of some of UFOs (Unfinished Objects) that are floating around… the three tins on the left are going to be attached to a Lazy Susan and then filled with pens, pencils and dry erase markers for my teacher table. I want supplies at hand and easy for all my students to reach. The two containers on the left are for my Sharp and Dull pencils. I have the labels printed and a stack ready to start laminating!
More buckets…. Not quite sure of what I plan to use them for but I’m thinking hanging from a peg board or from Command Clips so that I can have small sets of manipulatives handy for various activities.
Pocket charts are CRUCIAL for my students schedules! I can’t wait to start planning our days out so that I can start making the cards for each student. Each of the pocket charts will be for 2 students once I sew up the middle to create a distinct two columns. I need to grab one more but every Target around me is out of them. UGH!
While the hubs and I were out this weekend I lucked into grabbing 2 of the BIG POST IT PADS for $20 as they were Buy 1, Get 1 FREE and I was at the right place. I am excited to use these this coming year for some anchor charts and group work. I won’t even go into the story of how the young man working made the railing of the shelf fall on my toe. OUCH!
Not too bad of a pile of UFOs here… The flowers, ribbon and big letter S are for my yarn wreath that is almost done being wrapped. Seriously I never knew how much that HURT to wrap and wrap and wrap. Then of course I have the clothespins to get done. I need to get into my classroom (hopefully this week) so that I can determine if they are going to be magnets or tacks. Then the last little bit are wooden plaques that are super thin. I am going to paint them the aqua color and add magnets to the back of them after I put my student’s names, para’s names and my name. We are going to use these on our board to notate various things (attendance, graphing, etc.).
More deals were to be had… pencil boxes for cheap, penny pencils, quarter glue (perfect for Glue Sponges), Purell small bottles for a dime, and clearance Post It Notes (which I have already used the pink and blue tabs!). There also might be some washi tape in this pile too!
Scored a few more deals today while I was running to pick up my Teacher Planner (see below). I grabbed 6 packs of cap erasers, 20 folders with brads, 2 of the little boxes and some clearance binder rings.
The erasers are just a need every year, the black folders will be for my student’s IEP Progress Monitoring and the purple will be their Take Home Folders. I want to keep constant communication open with my parents and think that this is important. The 2 little boxes were actually a price match from Staples and I can’t wait to use them for various small games. I am totally seeing dice in these so that dice don’t end up across the room. The binder rings will definitely be use for about a hundred different things.
I mentioned my Teacher Planner above that I was picking up and I am SO excited about this that I can’t even think straight! This planner has been customized to meet the needs that I have in my classroom. Not only does it start in August and go through July of next year, there are also pages in between each month for Important Dates (think meetings, IEP Progress Monitoring, end of grading periods, etc.), Notes and To Do Lists, Meetings Notes and Things to Remember. And then at the end there are pages for each of my students that I can take notes on as well as notate parent contact. I am SO ecstatic with what I was able to get from this planner. MissMathDork has done it again!
And the latest addition to my Teacher Bag aresnal is a new Thirty-One Organizing Utility Tote that I just picked up from the embroidery shop. I already had the file tote from The Container Store and grabbed some blue hanging file folders. I will tell you… this bag is worth every stitch it is made of! I love my other Organizing Utility Totes and am so excited to start this new year with this one!
So, what have you been buying? What UFOs do you still have around your house that you are waiting to finish as the days tick down as we wrap up another great summer?