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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Hurricane Ready?

 Hurricane Isabel (Image from

It's that time of year again... The peak of hurricane season.  Right now it is a wait and see about Tropical Storm Issac.  We fall in the cone of uncertainty.  With that said, here is what I do to prepare at school.

Bins! Bins! Bins!  Hurricane Ivan was the first hurricane I experienced and it was a doozy!  Looking back, I now realize that must be where my obsession with bins and plastic originated.

I keep my centers, math supplies, reading supplies, school supplies, etc.. in plastic bins.  Okay Just about EVERYTHING is in a bin when it is not being used.

On Friday our principal came over the intercom and instructed personnel to cover all the electrical equipment with plastic.  I use the dollar plastic table cloths at Walmart to cover my computers.  The T.V., projector, and document camera are covered with plastic trash bags.  I lock the computer and iPad both wrapped in plastic in a cabinet off the ground.

Right now I am kicking myself because I usually cover all my book bins.  They are open plastic tubs that are usually used for washing dishes.  I need to buy a couple of more of those Walmart plastic table cloths to cover my classroom library.  They will probably be okay. Most are off the ground, well away from the windows, and are not pushed up against a wall.

From Hurricane Ivan, I have learned that placing items up against the interior walls is not always safe.  I thought by moving everything away from the windows, it would be protected.  Nope.  Water can make its way down the walls so it is important to move items that you do not want damaged away from the walls.

I had a doctor's appointment on Friday after school so I was unable to fully prepare my room.  I did cover the electrical equipment and do all the things the principal instructed.  I did not, however, get a chance to cover my precious books or move a couple of things away from the wall.

In planning my room, I was aware of the windows and did not place anything of value near them.  I did not want to have to move those items anytime there was severe weather.  Also, over the course of the last eight years, I have purchased numerous plastic tubs with covers to store my items in .  When I moved schools, I bought clear plastic bins instead of boxes.  I figured I could reuse them and they protect my items.

I have been teaching over a decade and have invested way too much money into my classroom, to not prepare.  I know it is just stuff but it would be hard to replace years of acquisitions.  I am a bargain hunter.  If any of my teaching tools were damaged, they would be hard to purchase again or make again.  Especially with my new baby.  I am curbing my school spending drastically to take care of my new bundle of joy.

Keeping her safe is my number one priority right now.  Let's just hope this storm does not strengthen over the warm gulf waters.  I have a queasy feeling about this one...


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