Tips to Pack Up Classroom & Prep for Fall

Hi Friends!

My school year is now OVER!  Woo Hoo! Well.except for that pesky teacher planning day on Tuesday.  But then, I’m home free!

It is so tempting to close up you classroom quickly!  Why not?  We're tired, given 110% of ourselves, and we're ready to relax, refocus, and rejuvenate ourselves.  Before you close up all "willy nilly",   I'm sharing some great tips to FOCUS on that make that START of your school year so much easier!
Whether you are new to teaching or just looking for some great ways to pack up with a plan, I wanted to share a few things I do that make my life so much easier when we head back to school in late summer (never Fall, huh?).

Recover your bulletin boards.
Imagine your packed up room: stacks of boxes off of the floor, items hidden in nooks and crannies, etc.  And all you REALLY want to do is make your room cute.
So, when we pack up for the year, the very first thing I do is strip my bulletin boards and put up fresh paper.  Sometimes I spring for the fadeless paper at the local school supply store, but I mostly use fabric!.  Whatever you choose, recover your boards & add your favorite border.  If you KNOW how you are dedicating the space-go ahead and add your headers and such.
THEN, I put a layer of cheap plastic table coverings over the wall.  It protects the color, keeps out the dust, and it is ready to roll when you walk in. Peel off the layers and you immediately have a fresh looking room.

Prep for Orientation
Do you have one of your days of planning dedicated to a Parent Orientation?  We sure do-usually the last day of our pre-planning days.  And usually all of those days beforehand were spent in meetings and training.  AAAH! Don’t let panic set in during those days. Make those copies NOW!  I usually wait for the welcome letter to be copied: you never know who on your team might move over the summer.  You CAN copy the generic things that are important for your parents: a parent questionnaire, classroom policies, etc.
I also like to use the last few days of school to have my kids fill out a fun booklet for NEXT year’s students!  It keeps my kids busy in a fun way on the last few days of school AND it is a nice welcome for mu future kidlets.  A bag of goldfish saying "You are O-Fish-ally a 3rd Grader" and the booklet is a homerun!  And school hasn’t even started yet!

Copy for the first few days & weeks
The beginning of school is the perfect time to start with your classroom routines.  If your curriculum isn’t being updatedmake those copies now!
Morning Work
First Reading Test
First Math Test
Spelling Inventory Checks
3rd Day of 3rd Grade Booklet
Any Open House crafty things you like to display-do these on the first few days when you have down time
Put them all together in one place and you won’t be waiting in line at the copier or frustrated when it jams and you’re waiting for the copier dude to come fix it!

Bring your “To-Go” bag
Have any summer projects that you want to work on?  Laminated task cards? Rework your basal with a different approach? Folders to prep for your students?
As I pack things away, I have my biggest Thirty-One tote waiting nearby.  As I put away my manuals and such, I will put anything I want to take home in the tote.  Sheet protectors and binders to organize units, labels to print over the summer, pocket folders that I’ve already laminated, etc.  There is nothing worse than wanting something that is packed away!  Even if you can get back into your roomwhere the heck did I put it?  Will I get to everything? Probably not.  But at least I know where my supplies are and I have a place to put the things that I complete over the course of the summer, too.

Pack that ONE special box
Think ahead-what will you need first? Stapler? Pens? Mahvelous Tape? Screwdriver?
Put all of those essential supplies together in one place:  a certain shelf, a labeled box, a dedicated cabinet.  When you walk in that first day, it will be great to grab those essential elements right off the bat.  No matter where you start in recreating your classroom-you will have whatever you might need.  I learned THAT one the hard waylots of opened boxes.  CHAOS!!

I hope that helps you a bit as your school year winds down.  I know my neck of the woods ends a bit early and hoping this will ease that transition from school year-to summer-to back-to-school!

Image Map

No comments