Saturday, December 22, 2012

Classroom Organization: My 5th and 6th Grade Classroom

The view from the back of my room...

and from the front. I have middle/high school desks because I was tired of the "trash collectors" that are elementary desks and it was easier since the students switch classes half way through the day.

This is where I put all of the "stuff" I need to teach from:  teacher's manuals, curriculum binders, tape for journals, etc. The bulletin board is covered with a sheet.  I loved the dark background against the light colored posters that Kristen at Ladybug's Teacher Files does so well so I put it up in my room.  I already had the black tablecloth on my table, so it was a perfect fit. I put up posters that pertain to whatever we happen to be studying.  I love these posters by Becky at dots-n-spots. You can get the posters here: Set 1 and Set 2. They are for 4th and 5th grade, but a lot of the vocabulary can be used for 6th grade and higher.

Under my table are hidden treasures....

To the left of that is this set of drawers.  It has all the papers I use all the time (graph paper, lined paper, white cardstock, yellow cardstock) in it (lower ones just have things thrown in there right now...)

My printer that I got from Donors Choose, wooden organizers, inherited from my mother (a retired teacher), that have my label/sticker sheets and misc other things.

My homemade magnetic board made from an oil drip pan (found on Pinterest)

 All my curriculum binders....

On the top of the bookshelf are my containers that hold all my ISTEP prep materials. First shelf holds my 6th grade common core binders that are slowly filling up (we don't do full implementation until next year)

The next shelf holds all my 5th grade math material. I haven't gotten around to changing them to the CCSS yet.  The third shelf is 5th grade SS...I keep having to get bigger binders so some of my binder labels aren't the right size.

The fourth shelf is 6th grade SS and the bottom shelf is 5th and 6th grade Science. 

Other misc. materials

 Going around to the right of my table are these rolling tubs I got from Ikea.  The top one has weekly report folders in it, I still need to make a sign for it.

I pushed my filing cabinets together like I had seen on Pinterest. I have my standards posted here. I purchased a wonderful set of Math CCSS from Steve at Creative Classroom A to Z. I then made Science and Social Studies standard posters to match.  If you are in Indiana, you can purchase the 5th grade and 6th grade Science standard posters from my TpT store. The clip boards normally have student work on them, but all the papers were passed back before the winter break.

Math manipulatives, paper and student workbooks.

My behavior clip chart.  I had seen these all over teacher blogs and decided to try it this year.  It's been hard to remember to move the clips.  I have two groups of students, so the left side is the 6th graders and the right is the 5th graders.  I have this chart up for sale in my TpT store.

Class schedule, homework chart and make-up work.  I put a magnet strip on the front inside of the file folder and it keeps the folder closed on the sides and attached to the board.

 My cart that I teach from. It was an overhead projector cart.  I got a board to cover to top including the big hole in it and then covered the board with part of a sheet and used the rest of it to create a skirt for the cart.  I think all my signs on here are from Ladybug's Teacher Files

 Student supplies that sit at the end of my teacher desk.

Dry erase boards and netbooks (6 are from Donors Choose and I donated the "fancy" one when I was no longer using it at home - the kids always want to use that one, especially the girls!)

More math manipulatives and games.  The large drawers are full of games too.  I will eventually change the labels to match CCSS. The small drawers have decks of cards, dice and dry erase markers in them for the math games. The basket is filled with wash cloths to wipe the dry erase boards.

All those cute little people you see on my posters are courtesy of Thistle Girl Designs.

Saturday, December 15, 2012


I am a 5th and 6th grade teacher in the largest school district in Indiana.  I am currently in my 17th year of teaching (Wow, has it really been that long!).  I've taught grades 5-8 during my career.  I started out in a middle school and then our district moved the 6th grade to the elementary and I've been there ever since. We are a small school in a large district and we only have one 5th and one 6th grade class.  We are semi-departmentalized.  I teach math, science, and social studies and the other teacher does all the reading, writing, and grammar.  I've been a science trainer for the district for the past two years and a math trainer for the last year.

I've been married to my husband, Kevin, for 15 years.  We don't have any children, but love to spend time with our three nieces and four nephews. We also love to travel.  We've been lucky enough to travel to Japan (to visit my brother who was stationed in Okinawa), Italy, Mexico and the Caribbean.

Here is a picture of how I spent my 39th birthday..... in the ruins of Pompeii!

I am also a scrapbooker and amateur photographer.  If you use sketches, please visit my other blog 4x6 Photo Sketch Blog.

I hope to use this blog to showcase what I am doing in my classroom and to share the lessons that I use.  I hope that you will come back and visit often!