Right now, it may look bare, but I wanted to keep lots of open space for anchor charts, posters, and pictures as we start to learn together. I want my 1st grade friends to feel ownership in the space. Since I’ve been blessed with a stunning physical space, I did not adopt a ‘theme’, but focused on clean lines and organization. I wanted us feel comfortable in the space, not overwhelmed, and know where everything is. For my personal well-being, I wanted a calm and organized home. 🙂
As you walk in the room and turn left, you’re greeted by our writing center. A transformed teacher desk (desk drawers facing the wall), this makes the perfect writing area. The magnetic sides of the desk are perfect for hanging materials or sticking Command Hooks. Plus, the large surface will be great for holding our writing materials and the open space above the desk will be perfect for showcasing our anchor charts. Although we’re a week and a half into school, this is one area of our classroom we’ve yet to explore. The anticipation is killing us, but we are going to hold out for another 2 weeks or so. Right now, we are focusing our writing juices and efforts on Oral Writing.
The small plastic containers (purchased from Dollar Tree) are perfect for offering ideas for our writing. In the magazine holder, using an idea from Second Story Window, I’ve placed our classroom journals. As students begin to have free choice during our Daily 5 rotations, they may choose to add a story to our shared writing journals. From this angle you can see a peek of the Teacher Wife’s “What Writers Write” pencil. This week, we are exploring “What Writers Write” during our snack/read aloud time. (You may grab all the labels here.)
Kristen Smith’s “Work on Writing” I Can statements are perfect for encouraging my students and keeping us focused. On the side of the desk, you’ll noticed command hooks for word/vocabulary rings. I love Renee Dooly’s Word Cards for Littles. To begin our year, I’ve only included a few of the cards on the rings – summer words, school words, sports words, emotion words. As we continue through the year, I’ll keep on adding words to the rings!
In this corner, I also have my teacher table. I use stools from Ikea for student seats because they take up zero room, and they are perfect for wigglly 1st graders! 😉 I have two black, Sterilite drawers under each end of the circle table. One set of drawers is my traditional ‘teacher desk’ and the second set holds my small group materials – blue (high), yellow (medium), and green (low) groups.
This is our library nook, and we started using it the very first day! My kids know our most important goal is to become better readers, and they’re excited. As a less-expensive, easy-to-clean, carpet alternative, I purchased rubber floor tiles on Amazon for our space. I so excited to say they’ve worked perfectly!
The two bookshelves provided by my school hold our read-aloud, seasonal books for our wooden book display, student book bins, and our leveled library. You can snag the labels here.
Then, using plate holders from Hobby Lobby, we have a great book display in our window. Did I mention I have THREE windows?!? It’s awesome!! (But beware, when books or things are close to the window, they may or may not have a tendency to ‘hop’ out!)
Rounding the corner, you see the last bit of our room – our learning tools storage, word wall, and cubbies. (Snag the labels here.)
Lastly, welcoming guests into our classroom is our ‘Wow Work’ display. While I’ll have a more formal space outside for every student to showcase work, our in-classroom display is perfect for highlighting small victories. This is one thing I really missed not having last year, so I was thrilled to find space for it over our mailboxes.
So, friends – there you go! I’m so excited to show you our space, and I love how my sweet 1st grade friends have made it ‘home’. It’s going to be a fantastic year! 🙂