Caution: Work Zone

We finally were allowed back in our classrooms this week - although I don't think our principal anticipated how many of us would want to be back. We have twenty-four teachers grades 1-5, and at least six of us showed up and started working on our rooms for a few days this week. A few others stopped in just to grab something too. It is four weeks before school starts, so I kind of understand why she wasn't expecting so many of us, but I have so much to do!

I think I've mentioned it already, but this year I am changing grades and rooms. Lots of work - especially since the room I've been put in has seen a number of teachers in the last few years and has amassed quite the collection of things. We're talking teachers' guides, manipulatives, games, programs, anything and everything under the sun. Other teachers in my building tell me I should keep it, but I ended up getting rid of a lot of it. I don't follow the 'you never know if you could use it' belief system that many teachers do. My thoughts are more along the line of - if you think it's going to be stuffed in the closet (which I don't have) all year long, get rid of it. I did keep a number of things, but only things I know that I'll use.

One thing I found while cleaning/organizing my things...

... one of my little friend's erasers! I had to smile when I found it because I was just posting about it. You'll notice the lovely pencil holes, the chunks missing (from biting it?), and all the pencil marks around the holes. Quite the effective eraser.

This week, I've been working to tackle the ambiance of the room. A fancy word for what I hope will be a fancy room. Below are pictures of what I had to work with. Depending on what side of the room I look at, I feel like I'm in two completely different rooms. This isn't exactly how it started off, but close. We had already taken down some borders and moved desks around by the time I took these pictures.

This side of the room makes me feel like I'm in a different decade! That orange cabinet and that orange counter back... and the red shelves! Yikes! Not to mention the yellow butcher paper everywhere!
Would you have guessed this is part of the same room? Well it is! If I understood the previous teacher correctly, some of these walls were already covered when she got in which is why none of the panels match...

Well, I went in on three days this past week, and I have to say that I didn't get too much done until the last day. The first two days were mostly spent taking things down on one side and debating how much money I want to put into redoing the walls. (In case you are wondering, I found fabric at a amazingly low price - some at Wal-Mart and some at Hobby Lobby - and ended up getting enough for most of the walls.) The last day, I was finally ready to start putting up the fabric on the mismatched wall. My grandma has also been helping me get things ready. She's been tackling those interesting red shelves. In all reality, they may not have been so terrible if they matched the look I am going for.

We've been covering the shelves with wood contact paper. This is where my library will be.
The mismatched wall now matches! I still need to put borders up though. The other wall will have a similar color.
Not much progress here, but you can see the shelves in the background, and we're covering the orange cabinets with the wood contact paper.

I haven't done too much more this week. My poor pup has been sad that I've been at school all day, so when I get home, I spend time with him - or nap. One thing I did do is my school supply list. I'm so excited for it! It's not even that exciting, but I got the idea last year and it was too late to use it. Now I can! I don't know about you, but the kids in my school show up with various combinations of what is written on the school supply list. Just about everyone has something missing. I tried to encourage kids to bring in missing materials, but since it was my first year, I'll admit I wasn't always the most organized with that kind of thing. This year, I'm sending home slips asking parents to send in the missing supplies.

I'm sure this will work better than what I did last year - since I did nothing last year - but we'll see how much better it works. This list is tailored to my school supply list, but if you'd like to use it, feel free! You can download it by clicking here. If you'd like a copy without the little owl, shoot me an email. I made her the other day and think she's so stinkin' cute! She'll be on my name tags, also!

More projects to come! Leave some comment love!


  1. What a BIG difference. Your room already looks much better.It did look like two different rooms in one. Good Luck with the rest. I can't wait to get into my room. I will also be in a new room this year.

    Tales From Rm 17!

    1. Good luck with your new room, Christine! Hopefully you don't have to go through all the manual labor I did to get it in tip top shape. :)

      Thanks for stopping by!

  2. That is funny! I just found your blog through another blog. I am your newest follower and would love for you to come check us out sometime. Your newest follower, Stephanie

  3. Love your room!!! Thanks for stopping by my blog and I have just signed on to be your newest followers!!!
    ...and remember ...always stay 'Wild About School!'