School starts the day after Labor Day in my district; the first day back for teachers is next Monday already. We have a limited amount of time to work in our classrooms during workshop week before Back to School Night so I’ve been getting a head start on some things this week.
I’ve decided to have a superhero and comic book theme in my classroom this year. I’ve been having a lot fun drawing and adding graffiti to my bulletin boards, and coming up with phrases that play on the language seen in comic books.
Here’s my calendar and where I’ll hang other papers for students to reference like our class birthdays and possibly the lunch menu. I’ve also added a space for the superhero of the week. I’ve found that the kids really enjoy sharing about themselves, and getting the chance to learn more about each other’s interests. Our morning meeting time will be extremely limited this year so I wanted to include a way for students to still get the chance to share.
This year I’m getting rid of reading logs and requiring my students to read 40 books from 10 different genres. I got this idea from Donalyn Miller’s book The Book Whisperer. I’m planning to use these bulletin boards for book recommendations. I picked up some comic speech bubble decorations for students to write a brief teaser and review and then add to the bulletin board when they come across a book they think others would also enjoy.
We just adopted a new vocabulary curriculum that focuses on Latin and Greek roots, prefixes and suffixes. I plan to devote one building to each unit. We’ll add yellow windows to the buildings as we learn new roots and see them in our reading.
I’m trying something new in math this year as well. I’m doing flipped classroom together with one of my teammates. We’ve been working all summer to create lessons and videos for our students to watch and learn from. I also completed my master’s project this summer which focused on math menus. This is where I’ll either display their work from their projects or have math vocabulary and definitions.
Here’s a guiding principle for our room this year. I think this nicely compliments our school values of Be Safe, Be Kind, Be Responsible, and Be Respectful.
And finally, my pride and joy. I’m very pleased with how my classroom door turned out. I only needed to sketch the silhouette twice to get it to be the right size. Once my class list is more finalized, I’ll add my students’ names to the door using some die-cut explosions.