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Tame the Packing Chaos!

How to pack up your classroom to make unpacking easier

Have you wrapped up your school year yet?  We just did and just like every other teacher who has to pack up the classroom, I dread it every year!  I have learned a thing or two over the years to make this packing a bit more organized and easier to do.  As you pack up, keep the next school year in mind.  If you do your packing with in a way that makes the unpacking easier you will help save yourself time, effort, and maybe your sanity!  

How to pack up your classroom to make unpacking easier
First, clean everything!  This is easier to do if you can have your students help you.  They can do the easy cleaning with gentle cleaning products- cleaning inside and tops of desks, baskets in sinks, easels, tables, etc... Students love to help out and this will save you some valuable time for when you unpack.  

How to pack up your classroom to make unpacking easier

Next, get rid of anything you are not using.  Teachers tend to keep EVERYTHING just in case we might need it later since we don't have enough budget money.  But get rid of the clutter, things you don't use, broken or missing piece items.  Give away to other teachers anything in good shape, but get rid of the extra.  I love to throw away clutter and get it out of my room!

How to pack up your classroom to make unpacking easier

Label all your boxes.  Not just what's in it, but where it goes.  That will help you when unpacking to get everything back like before and if you are lucky enough to have someone help you unpack, they will know right where to put it.

How to pack up your classroom to make unpacking easier

Use nice looking labels on everything you have to mark with your name or room number.  If they look nice enough, you can just leave them on all year and you won't have to repeat this step the next year.  Another time saver

How to pack up your classroom to make unpacking easier

Create a classroom map for the custodians so there is no confusion as to where to place your furniture.  Save the map on your computer so it can easily be changed from year to year so you don't have to start all over if you change some of the layout in your classroom.

How to pack up your classroom to make unpacking easier

Do you use Interactive Reader's Notebooks?  Have students take their pages out and then help you get the notebooks ready for next year.  Much easier to prep these notebooks when you have extra hands to help you than at the beginning of the year and no help.  You can have the notebooks ready to pull and use!

How to pack up your classroom to make unpacking easier

Along the same thinking is to prep your box or crate or whatever you use to house your extra copies of papers you use frequently, like Interactive Reader's Notebook pages, running records sheets, graphic organizers, etc...

How to pack up your classroom to make unpacking easier

One last tip, hang up a sheet in an easy to use place and record supplies you are low in and will need to order.  Makes it a lot easier when you go to fill out your requisitions for next year.

Good luck with your packing as you wrap up your school year and head into your summer!

Universal Screenings & RTI Plans

Using the DRA for Universal Screenings

As we are finishing up our RTI groups for our second cycle of RTI, it is also time to begin our universal screenings of all our students for reading.  At our school, we are using the DRA 2 for our universal screening for students reading up to level 38.  After students pass a level 38, we move them over to assessing with the IRI.  It is so gratifying to see the progress these RTI students can make after 10 weeks or 12 weeks of targeted interventions.  

Teachers keep graphs each week to show the amount of progress each student is making with their interventions.  We use the information from the weekly graphs along with the DRA and IRI scores to help our RTI committee make decisions on moving students in and out of tiers.

Pencil Nubs

Do anyone else's class pencils look like this?  Actually mine look like this minus the eraser!  By this time of year, our pencils seem to always be worn down to a nub and we NEVER have erasers left on them.  And for some reason it seems some students purposely choose these nubs of pencils over the longer ones!  I am not sure why though.  I have to go through and toss the shorties so students will actually use the nice, new long ones!

RTI Reading Intervention Visual Plans and Resources

Here are your visual plans for the week!  As you can see short vowels and long vowels still needing some work.  The centers used in the plans above are in my Spring Literacy Pack.  There are 6 phonemic awareness and phonics activities included in the pack.

Spring Literacy Centers

For students in the other group who are farther along in their skills, open and closed syllable centers is what they need.  They can work in centers with the multisyllabic words and then apply that skill in the fluency passages that have comprehension questions to go along with them.  

Enjoy your week and I hope your school and parents pamper you for Teacher Appreciation Week!

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