Friday, June 21, 2013

Classroom Library

When I "inherited" my classroom, I also "inherited" a classroom library that needed a lot of TLC.  eBay and yard sales helped me add quality books without breaking my budget.  The next order of business was to organize the books in a way that made the books easy to find and hold the students accountable when they borrowed them. 

I created a simple excel spreadsheet of every book title and author in our classroom library.  I printed out the master list so the students could easily peruse the titles.  (We keep this master list with our classroom library.) Then, I printed library cards to go in the back of each book.

When the students checkout a book, they fill out the library card and place it in the basket.  This holds the students accountable for the books they have borrowed.  It greatly reduces the number of books that are misplaced throughout the school year.  The students sign the book back in when they finish reading it.
The books are arranged on our bookshelf alphabetically by author's last last.  (This is also how the books are listed on our master list.)  The students try to put the books back where they belong, however they need a little help.  At the end of this year I made dividers to mark the beginning of each section

 I used cheap, white moulding from Home Depot.  My husband cut the moulding into 8 inch sections.  Each section was wrapped with zebra duck tape and labeled A, B, C, etc.  I'm pretty proud of the finished product!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Bitter Sweet

When you have a class like I did this year, you don't necessarily look forward to the last day of school.  (Now, don't get me wrong. I'm certainly looking forward to summer break.)  I will, however, miss the gentle ways of this year's class.  Our class was composed of leaders who respected the opinions of others.  They were risk takers willing to reach outside their comfort zone.  The students were compassionate, caring, and kindhearted. 

Instead of being "over the top" excited about the last day of school, our class remained focused.  I guess I should add self disciplined to their list of attributes. 

The girls elected to have a wordsearch competition on the last day of school.

The boys enjoyed a chess tournament before heading to summer break.
Farewell my fourth graders- you will be greatly missed!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Field Day Fun

Field Day is like the light at the end of the tunnel.  For the teachers, it signifies the end of grading papers, the end of copying, and the end of planning.  For the students, it signifies the end of homework, the end of school uniforms, and the end of the dreaded alarm clock.

Traditionally, our Field Day is scheduled for the last week of school.  Unfortunately, Tropical Storm Andrea had other plans.  Our quick thinking PE teacher and administration moved Field Day forward to get it in before the storm.  What a great decision! We were delighted to wake up to 70 degrees, sunshine, and a gentle breeze.

We are waiting to stand for the singing of our National Anthem.
Tug of War is the first event of the day.
The "big kids" (4th and 5th grades) compete in the 50 yard dash.  
The sack race is always a fun one with lots of laughter.