Back to school time is always busy for everyone involved, but my school year started a little crazier than usual. School was delayed by a week due to some water issues (I know, those seem to follow me around) and just getting school started in general is always just kinda nuts. However, I was really craving a routine and being back at school, just because our summer was so crazy. I’m so grateful to work in a place with supportive administration, teachers and sweet kids. I think teachers get that “first day of school jitter” thing just as badly as kids do. I definitely do! I was so anxious to meet this group of four years old’s and I’m really excited about the year ahead.
I wanted to start writing more about crafts, projects, classroom hacks and other teacher related subjects. This post is all about my ocean themed classroom and how I used ordinary items to make a pretty awesome “Under the Sea” themed classroom. And the kids LOVED it!
Favorite Classroom Finds: Here are a few items I love to use in my classroom and where you can find them. For decorations, these fish nets and these ocean die cuts. I love this calendar, this counting pocket chart and this helping hands chart for everyday classroom circle time. I love these IKEA pillows and these pillow cases to make a reading couch. Also, the Dollar Tree is great for all sorts of teacher supplies like die-cut letters and borders.
Discipline System: I’m a huge fan of the positive reinforcement system with kids. I love giving the kids something to work towards. I read the kids the “Have you filled a bucket today?” book and used that to set the stage for our discipline system. I ordered this shoe holder, stuck it the wall with command strips, bought $1 buckets from Target in a ton of colors and use colorful pom-poms as rewards. The kids start the week with 1 pom-pom and as they do kind things, they get a pom-pom. They have to get to 5 in one week. Then they get a sticker on their chart. Once they get to 5 stickers, they get to go in the treasure box. So far, they seem to love this! It also gives you something to help the kids stay on track. When there’s some disruptive behavior or breaking of class rules, the kids get a warning and then a pom-pom is taken out of the bucket.
Here’s how I decorated my classroom this year! I’ll show you how to make some of these projects and decorations in my next post!