Monday, July 21, 2014

Setting Up the Resource Classroom: Small Group Area

Today's Setup: The Small Group Area

The Small Group Area may be one of the easiest places to get setup.  In my room this consists of a kidney shaped tables and chairs. 

Told you it was easy!

Okay, okay…I know what you are thinking!  It really isn’t that simple—well it sort of is—but I know you didn’t come here just to read get a table and chairs!  Honestly, yes the majority of my small group teaching is done at the kidney table.  Last year, I didn’t get the kidney table until the end of the year and I am so thankful to start this year out with one.  Most of last year, I used tables grouped in fours, but that took up so much room in my small space and I also didn’t like that I could be with all of my kids at once.  I felt like I spent a lot of time standing in front of them teaching instead of being “right in there with them.”  Hence the reason I love a kidney or U-shaped table.  I can be within arms reach of all of my kids at one time and feel like I am right in the middle of their learning (and well literally I am!)   Many times at the small group area, I am teaching some sort of scripted intervention, leading a guided reading group or leading a math intervention group and for these reasons there are certain tools I like to have very near to me.

Here is a picture of the table.  Please keep in mind I just got back in my room today, so what you are seeing is a work in progress.  

The table is only one area of small group learning in my small space.  I also like to have another space used to small group instruction.  This gives my kids an opportunity for movement, allows for natural transition from one part of a lesson to another, and helps with engagement.  My second small group area centers around the pocket chart/stand.  This is where our vocabulary instruction takes place.  I haven't decided on whether or not to move this stand to another spot in the room yet.  I would like to have it near some carpet for some comfy seating, but the room size doesn't really allow for that at this point.  

Speaking of where things go, here's a tip! I like to use PowerPoint to come up with a model of my room and the furniture in my room.  I can manipulate and move the pieces around without actually lifting any furniture!  So perfect! :)

Blue: Permanent/Cannot be Moved
Gray:  Desks or shelves that can be moved

I hope you find something here that inspires you or you get a good idea!
Tomorrow I will be back with more classroom setup idea!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

2014 Classroom Setup: Setting Up The Resource Classroom (A Series)

This week is the week I move back into my classroom. If you have been following my blog very long, you know that I moved to a new school last year. It is a beautiful school, a brand new building, but it wasn’t complete at the beginning of last year. Our school was built in two phases. Each phase of the building has classroom (communities) for grades K-5. Phase one was completed last year and our school district went through a redistricting process to direct students to our building. Students and teachers filled up Phase 1 and throughout the course of the year Phase 2 was completed. The school district redistricted students again to fill up our school for the coming year. The end of our school year brought new excitement as we watched the new phase undergo the transformation from nothing to amazing! It also brought a lot of questions. Everyone wondered if they would be the one to move from Phase 1 to Phase 2. Recently, after hiring several new teachers, we found out who gets to move. Guess who is moving?! That’s right! This girl! I am excited about heading to the new phase. It is just like Phase 1, so my classroom is practically the same as the one I was in, but how many teachers can say that they have moved into a brand new classroom two years in a row? Before last year, I never had a classroom of my very own, so although I had a great time planning and decorating my previous room, I have a better idea of space planning and organization. (Or at least I think I do!)  Here is last year's classroom:

So, as this coming week goes I will be sharing with you how I am setting up my resource classroom. I will be focusing on five separate areas (perfect for Monday-Friday blog planning) ;)! Read this week to find out all about the 5 areas I think make a special education/resource room work!  I even made a new bloggy button, just for fun, and so you can Pin/Share and follow my process.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Special Ed Blog Hop! :)

I am linking up with Jamie from Tales of a Carolina Girl for her Special Education Blog Hop!  Head over to her blog to check out some great special education bloggers and welcome Jaime to the field of special ed.  I love finding other special ed. bloggers and creating a community to share ideas!

Kim :)

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

July Currently

Hello Bloggy Friends!

I figured there is no time better to get back into regular blogging than starting off July 1 with the new Currently from Farley at Oh Boy 4th Grade!

Listening:  I have a love/hate relationship with the local news!  I love to watch the news so I feel like I am in the know, but I hate to watch the news because it is always bad news.  I can't even watch it when the kids are in the room, because some of the things reported on are inappropriate for little ears.  I think this love/hate thing stems from my childhood. :)  My dad had to watch the news every night...I mean every episode of the news...5:00 Local News, World News at 5:30, 6:00 Local News, and 10:00 Local News.  It's a habit, I guess, that can't be broken.  Plus...I only really get to watch the news in the summer...I don't have time for it during the school year.  :)  I digress...

Loving:  I love summer!  I love the pool, vacations, hanging out with my kids, exercising, blogging and creating on my schedule.  It is a wonderful time of year!!  BTW...speaking of creating...I have bundled all of my special education related products together in my TPT store.  ($15 value for $10!!!)  

Thinking: I should be cleaning or working on something.  It's hard to sit still and relax!  Do you have that problem?  The kids have their "creations" all over the place and there are piles of laundry to fold and put away, but here I am blogging to you! :)  Blogging is work...right? :)

Wanting:  Did you know that McDonald's ice coffees are only $1 right now?  I love the iced caramel mocha!  I want one so bad...but I know better!  I'm trying hard to resist temptation.  I'll have to wait until "cheat day!"

Needing:  Lunch: I'm hungry!  Lunchtime right after this post!

4th of July Plans:  We don't really go all out for the 4th.  We will probably grill some burgers, watch some fireworks, and maybe make these adorable cookies I found here:

Easy American Flag Cookies from Our Best Bitess
Source: Our Best Bites