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Thursday, July 26, 2012

Back to School To Do List

It is getting close to the beginning of a new school year.  New ideas flood my brain about this time every year.  I always like to change things up.  In order to organize my thoughts I write lists.  Usually I write my beginning of the year to do list on a piece of scratch paper.  This year I am adding it to my blog so that I can refer back to it in years to come.  Right now this list includes a lot of items that I need to think about and decide upon before jumping into action.  I'll probably be adding to it in the days to come.

Room Arrangement (Think about the placement of the following)
  • desks
  • circle time/calendar area
  • teacher area
  • supplies (storage and accessibility)
  • writing station
  • reading station
  • listening station
  • inside recess toys
  • bulletin boards
  • reading table
  • technology (computers, projector, document camera)
  • lunch boxes
  • homework box
  • where the children will turn in their work

  • pencil cups (sharp/need to be sharpened)
  • pencils (have several sharpened in advance)
  • paper (writing paper, copy paper, construction paper)
  • writing center supplies (markers, envelopes, crayons, colored pencils, special paper, drawing books, idea lists, etc.)
  • books (book bins on desks, classroom library, big books, school library books)
  • manipulatives
  • sticker books (I like to make a little book with blank pages and a construction paper cover for the children to keep the stickers they receive throughout the year)
  • journals
  • reading books and workbooks
  • science workbooks
  • math workbooks
  • white boards, dry erase markers or erasable crayons, erasers or have children bring in a sock
  • possibly an activity box of what they can do when they finish early
  • mailboxes
  • homework folders
  • desk folders
  • center materials
  • hand sanitizer
  • tissues
  • band aids
  • recess equipment
  • reading pointer sticks
  • clipboards
  • student number
  • hall passes
  • place for lunch money
  • box for missing pieces/lost and found
  • possibly an anonymous note box for children to put questions, concerns, or suggestions

Organizational Items
  • post it notes
  • determine where to put the extra student supplies and print out list to record what items each child brought
  •  have extra plastic bags, ziploc gallon bags, and sandwich bags for storing or sending home extra supplies.
  • have extra pencil boxes and scissors available for students who may not have them.
  • remember sharpie marker to write names on student supplies
  • parent contact folder/notebook document calls, notes sent home, notes received
  • reflection notebook to write down concerns or notes on behavior as documentation
  • files with student names (assign each student a number)-Mrs. Farish, a first grade teacher at my school told me about assigning each student a number 1-18 to use for collecting papers and filing.  The students always write their number by their name and this makes filing go so smoothly.  Helpers are able to help with filing as well.  It is much easier to order numbers 1-18 than it is to put names in ABC order.
  • write student name and number on name tags, files (citizenship/behavior, writing, noteworthy work/assessment), lunch money containers, behavior sticks, helper cards, library cards, lunch cards, homework folders, owl cards (for students to be able to sign in on the computer)
  • have extra filler activities printed
  • velcro name tags to desk
  • address welcome letter or post cards to be mailed before orientation
  •  welcome letter for first day of school-include rules and procedures, lunch time, recess time, behavior management system, how to reach me, homework procedures, attendance policy, about me
  • student information cards copied and set out on desks for parents to fill out at orientation (include how child goes home, allergies, medications, anything I should know, favorite subject, hobby, thing to do, any talents, best time to call, best number to be reached at, emergency contact, birthday)
  • determine newsletter format for the year - Will it be the "Moos" paper again?
  • have desk folders ready for students to put work to save and work in progress...put red dot sticker and green dot sticker on pockets)
  • put color dot stickers on name tags...students are in groups of four each child has a different color sticker...this helps with passing out materials, collecting materials, forming other groups/partners (Mr. Sublett shared this idea.  I believe he learned it from a Kagan workshop)
  • determine management system (citizenship folders, behavior chart, class rewards, class incentives)
  • birthday chart
  • helper chart
  • lunch boxes/money system
  • where should children turn in their work, homework, notes from home, items for office, etc.
  • have first week activities ready (independent and whole group)
  • wish fish (have them set out for orientation for parents to pick up if they wish to donate anything for the classroom)
  • volunteer notebook and sign in scheet
  • orientation sign in sheet
  • think about what kind of volunteer help I need this year
  • what signals will I use for the students this year
  • must have bulletin boards-Daily 5, Word Wall, Calendar, Rules, Spelling, Helpers, Accelerated Reader, Student Work, etc)
  • clipboard for how we go home
  • while you were out folders for students who were absent
  • think about how will I pass back papers (mail boxes, desk, daily, weekly?)
  • grading system

Procedures to Introduce
  • morning routine
  • where to put backpacks, homework, notes from home, lunch box, pencils, supplies, missing pieces, etc.
  • create rule chart with children and post in, review, review
  • Give Me 5 listening chart
  • bathroom signal and how to keep it clean, how to use the sign in sheet, and go/stop sign
  • washing hands/sneezing into sleeve/hand sanitizer
  • classroom tour
  • raising hand and inside voices expectations (play soft instrumental music to keep volume down)
  • pencil cups
  • do a tour of the classroom and the school so children know where everything is
  • lunch behavior (get tray to model and practice in classroom before going to lunch)
  • attendance
  • morning announcements
  • how to handle a book/turn pages from the top/putting back where they found it
  • behavior, behavior, behavior (I like a well managed room where everyone gets along)
  • keeping desk tidy and neat
  • getting supplies
  • taking care of the classroom library
  • going to the library, office, clinic
  • helper chart
  • calendar
  • what to do when finished
  • how to use a computer (go over basics like being gentle, do not touch the cords/screen, etc)
  • water/water bottles only on tiled area
  • snack routine
  • recess rules
  • lining up/walking in the hall (hands by your side, bubble in your mouth, eyes straight ahead signs)
  • name tags (address velcro)
  • walking with scissors
  • putting things back
  • signals (bathroom, attention, help, etc)
  • listening center
  • spelling notebook
  • sticker book
  • Accelerated Reader reading log

 Other Things To Do
  • get emergency sub plans ready 
  • how we go home list
  • birthdays on calendar
  • lost tooth chart
  • caterpillar for keeping track of days
  • website and technology info for parents
  • laminate anything that needs to be done
  • get word work center ready
  • input student information in to programs to get username and password to pass out to students
  • beginning of the year assessments (FAIR, Beginning of the Year Math Test, Sight Word Lists (K and 1), Color Words, Number Words, Letter Names and Sounds, Words Their Way Primary Spelling Inventory, Running Record) 
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  1. Such a lot of things to do, teacher ❤

    1. Gee whiz! When are yall able to go into ur classrooms to start getting ready?

    2. I am going to try to go next week so it won't be so chaotic the week we officially go back. I like to "ease" back into it. A couple of hours here and there goes a long way. :)