Saturday, July 28, 2012

A Peek At My Room...Pre-Set Up

Since my "official" day back is about 2 weeks away (wahhh!!) I decided to swing by my classroom to pick up a teacher's edition I needed to start my lesson plans for the upcoming school year.  My team shares lesson plans and I am responsible for the 1st two months of school so I thought I'd get a head start.

Now as you may (or may not know) from a previous post we have to pack up our classrooms(and make sure as much as possible is off the floor) at the end of every year so that maintenance can come in and wax the floor/clean the room.  While inconvenient and time consuming I don't mind doing this so much because it gives me the opportunity to clean and organize everything for the upcoming school year.

This is what greeted me (besides a mildewy/garbagey smell) when I walked in my classroom door.
Empty boxes that were damp and had mold growing on them!!??
A book shelf blocking the entrance to the bathroom
Some of my items that were neatly stored by yours truly thrown haphazardly in the bathroom.  Notice the items on and in the toilet!!!!
Student agendas, ink and books for the team were delivered to my small hybrid classroom

Why would there be numerous damp, empty boxes with mold growing on them in my classroom you might wonder.  Well, teacher friends, that is due to maintenance accidently throwing all of the brand new math books that you see in the photo above, away in a dumpster for a day (the boxes that the books were in were clearly labeled to be delivered to my room and had my name on them). Oh, also, it may have rained on the day they were in the dumpster.  They thought they were trash (I kid you not). When the mistake was finally realized maintenance retrieved the books and told the school's bookkeeper that only a handful of the books would be unusable and that they would deliver the books that could be used to my room.
Well nobody checked the "usable" books that were delivered to my room, but thank goodness I went to my classroom when I did or who knows what I would have returned to.
The boxes were damp and had mildew growing on them (why they would think I would want dirty, wet, empty boxes is beyond me) as did many of the books.
Multiple pages in this one book looked like the page you see above.
I had to go through each book one by one to see what was really salvagable.  I won't even tell you about the mess this made.  Some of the books still had garbage and dirt stuck between the pages.

I. was. very .livid.

I ended up only being able to keep around a quarter of the books.  Thousands of dollars down the drain.  What infuritates me even more is that the head of our school's maintenance stopped by room and was insisting these books were usable.
Usable?? Can. You. Believe. It.

Was it wrong of me to tell/ask this individual "Who in their right mind would use a book that has mold growing in it or give it to a child to use? Who thinks it's okay to put damp, dirty books/boxes in my room and expect me to clean the mess? I also stated it was not in my job description to have to come to school and clean, never mind clean a mess that was left by adults who should know better.  And what's with my stuff in the toilet?  I don't spend my hard earned money on things for my classroom so it can be flushed down the drain."
I also may have told this individual that maintenance needed to read a book on cleaning or take a cleaning workshop. 

Maintenace at my school leaves much to be desired.  I sent an email to my admin. with many pictures to go with it and am waiting for a reply, unfortunately they were on vacation when this happened.  I just hope there is money left in our school budget to re-order books and that we get them on time.  I am trying to think positively about this, at least this issue was found out about sooner rather than later and I have started steps to rectify the issue.
What does continue to bother me though is that maintenance sees nothing wrong with the way my room was left for me and that they feel the books can still be used.

I'm sorry for this rant, but I thought writing it in this blog would be cheaper than therapy.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Back to School Unit

I was in Target and Walmart yesterday and could not believe all the back to school items that are out already.  I had to contain myself from buying too much.  The hubs (who is also a teacher) could not have been any more disinterested in all the brand new pencils, crayons, pencil grips, plastic storage containers I need storage container intervention  that were surrounding us.  Hubs thinks I am a weirdo sometimes because the smell of new crayons, or a bunch of newly sharpened pencils gives me a little thrill!  Come many of you get a thrill from brand new school supplies???  I know I am not the only one!!

I usually start thinking about the upcoming school year in earnest from mid to late July.  What do I need to buy? get ready? make? revamp?

In preparation for the upcoming school year I have put together a Back to School Unit that includes activities for First and/or Second Grade for the first week/few weeks of school.  This is what is included:

Playground Safety Writing Stationary (2 diff. line sizes) and circle map
* Summer Memory Writing Stationary (2 diff. line sizes) and Craftivity
 *All About Me Tree (students choose adjectives to describe themselves and add either the leaves or apples to their tree). I usually only have students choose 5 adjectives and add a background to their tree paper.
 *My Favorites (students tell about their favorites or draw a picture of their favorite)
 *Find a Buddy Who... (great ice breaker, great way to introduce cooperative learning structure)
* Odd and Even Number Sort with differentiated recording sheets and word cards included, so this activity can be used with cooperative learning structure Mix and Match or with slight modification Quiz, Quiz, Trade
* Before and After Bus Fun : students will tell the number that comes before and after a specified number (with differentiated recording sheets)
* Crayon Box Short Vowel Sort with sentence extension
 *Rhyming Apples : students will make pairs of rhyming words (with differentiated recording sheets and sentence extension); this activity can also be used with cooperative learning structures
* Apple-solutely Craftivity

I myself, use all of this activities during the first week(s) of school.   
You can snag yours here!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Friday Font Find and Clickeritis

Clickeritis: (verb) The process by which you go on the computer looking for one thing, but something else catches your eye and you click, go to a new page...see something else to a new hour goes by...hubby asks did you find what you were looking for (or you finally look at the clock)...think to self "what was I looking for again??"

I suffer from this almost everytime I go on the computer.  How 'bout you??

Here is a cute font I found while suffering from "clickeritis".
Love the stripe details.  You can get this free font here.

A good book and fruity beverage are calling my name!!
Happy Friday

Thursday, July 5, 2012

July Currently and A Nice Surprise

Hi lovelies!  I am so excited to be linking up with Farley for the first time at
Oh' boy fourth grade
for the July Currently.
Here are my currentlys :)
It was also a nice surprise to receive the Versatile Blogger Award from Patty at 2nd In Line and from Tammy at First Grade at Storybook Cafe.  I am going to do another post about the award after I do some blog stalking as I need 15 blogs to pass the award onto.
Thanks again ladies!!  It made my day!

I think I hear Starbucks calling my name...