August 26, 2014

Classroom Sneak Peek and Desk Plates to Share


I know so many of you are already back to school and I have been admiring your gorgeous classrooms! We don't head back until after Labor Day, so I'm still working away on my room. I did want to share a little sneak peek of what's going on though.

I am keeping the black with brights theme I've had for a couple of years now. There is nothing I love more than fine-tuning a classroom scheme and evolving it a bit each year...plus my students love those colors so I am committed for another year (or more??).

Here are a few things I've been tweaking so far...

New Contact Paper
If  you've followed the blog for awhile, you will know I love to cover my mismatched tables with contact paper. Last year, I went with black paper and it looked really sleek and modern...but in the end it was a lot of black along with my bulletin boards and I knew I would change it up a bit in the future. Here's a picture of last year's tables in black:

The tables in our classroom have about five different wood grains, so I decided to choose the...well...for lack of a better word, prettiest one to use this year! Three of our round tables are a warm, maple color. So I found some contact paper that matched really well at a local hardware store and have been covering all those mismatching tables with a new shade this year. 

Here's a darker table being transformed with new maple contact paper:

New Carpet
I found a new carpet back in June at Target for a nice sale price and I actually purchased two because they are my students' favorite alternative seating (besides our little couch, more to come on that later!). This is a messy-work-in-progress shot that shows the carpet design:

New Library Labels
The carpets actually led to a new library label inspiration. I knew since the spring I wanted a black and white label with an icon look this year... and I tried out a different shape as well. These labels are from my Simply Iconic Library Labels set and they have a regular rectangle shape as well (plus a white with black option):


New Dry Erase Features
I've also been having a lot of fun using dry erase shapes to tie in with that icon-looking layout for my morning meeting area. 

I used my circle cutter to make this calendar, so my 5th graders can write the date each day:
I realize it is still slightly askew (it's that Thursday column!!) but it was about 9,000% humidity the other day and we don't have AC at school...I will fix it next time.

And then I tried to this one look notebook paper-ish...

I have a couple of others I'm working on as well--they've been a lot of fun to make and they really stand out on the black contact-papered boards!

New Desk Plates

I've also reworked our desk plates since last year, after careful observation of how my students (especially the ones who really need these references) use them each day. 

I've always made my multiplication charts alternate colors in columns like this...it really helps students track the numbers with their finger and not get confused. I enlarged the charts as much as possible for the best readability and left a small space to write the name...since it's 5th grade and the name is more for substitute teachers.

I have a copy of the desk plate to share below...please click on the image if you would like to download:
http://bit.ly/1tRgt6Y
I have tons more to share but I don't think I'll have a full classroom tour until a couple of weeks into September...I hope you'll have a chance to visit the tour then, I feel so behind everyone else!

Are you still setting up your classroom? Or have you been back to school already? Thanks so much for stopping by!

29 comments:

  1. Everything looks great! I absolutely love the rug! Contact paper on the tables is a great idea! Thank you!

    Mary
    Fit to be Fourth

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  2. Reading your blogs always makes my to do list grow. :-) In a great way! Will you please share your Weekly Folder file too if you can?

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    1. Yes I haven't forgotten your request Aletha! I'm away on vacation now but will share it when I get back :)

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  3. Looks great!! Love the black and white. We had our inservice day today.

    Laurie
    www.firstgradelyonsden.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks Laurie, I hope things are off to a nice start!

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  4. Thanks so much for the desk plate with the place value and multiplication. It will be a great visual reference for our home education (homeschooling). Tis so hard to find something that covers the big numbers and decimal places. Cheers!!

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    1. I'm so glad it can help you in your homeschooling! Thanks so much for taking the time to let me know, happy teaching!

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  5. As always LOVE, LOVE, LOVE! I am SO going to print out those name tags! I love the place value chart! SO SMART! Can't wait to see everything else!! ;)
    Carmen

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  6. I was totally going to recover my tables after reading one of your previous posts about it, but I never found a contact paper that would look good! I should have done it! Looks great!!

    Stephanie
    Mrs. Cain's Creations

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    1. I just saw your room Stephanie and it looks beautiful!!! No need to cover them! Thanks so much for the lovely message :)

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  7. LOVE! Your classroom is organization & color coordination heaven! ♥

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    1. Thanks Jen!! I hope I didn't miss your classroom tour on your blog, off to check it out!

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  8. You are simply amazing! I adore your 'notebook-esque' poster!

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    1. Thanks Erin!! I adore all of your candy accents--your room looks incredible!!!

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  9. I've been back to school for 4 weeks, but I'm still setting up my classroom ;) LOL I love love love yours and love how you're using vinyl cut outs - such a smart idea. AND I love the idea of contact covered tables… what a great idea to make them more "appealing." Thank you for sharing your beautiful, creative style!

    Sara
    Miss V's Busy Bees
    ventrellasara@gmail.com

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  10. Your students are going to love their classroom! It looks amazing! Thanks for sharing your creativity!

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  11. do you print all your black and bright materials yourself or do you have them printed? I love them and would love to do that in the future!!

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    1. Hi Tobi, thanks! I do print them at home. It ends up being quite a bit in the summer when I'm setting up the decor for the room, but not as much during the rest of the year so I don't mind too much. Thanks for stopping by! :)

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  12. LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog!! Thank you for sharing!! i'm currently setting up my 4th grade classroom in Newark, NJ and i'm trying your Color Coded Classroom idea… I would love to cover our desks in con-tact paper too but i am afraid that any little bubble or imperfection will lead to students picking at the paper! (which would in turn make me mad at them and myself for thinking they wouldn't pick at it!!) I see how 40% of the store bought name/reference cards i had covered and taped down are ripped, torn, dirty, and simply Disgusting by May when i remove them for state testing! I would LOVE to hear how everyone else makes this better! To end on a more positive note =, i look forward to hearing more of your classroom ideas!! THANKS AGAIN!

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  13. You keep amazing me! Love the new tables. :)

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  14. Your nametags are perfect. I've been looking for ones that only have multiplication table and place value charts, nothing else. No solar system or USA. Finally! You nailed it.

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  15. It's looking great! Wish you could come and do mine:)
    Grade ONEderful

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  16. Looks beautiful as always! I love the new rugs and can't wait to see your couch. I have always wanted a couch in my room since my high school SGA teacher had one. I've found it to be literary and cool. I read on a couch at home why wouldn't I want to read on a couch at school?

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  17. Hi Kirsten,
    I have always loved your clear, clean and colourful approach to classroom design. Back a few years ago, you had black round table numbers available in TPT for free. I printed out # 1 - #4 but this year, I have to add a 5th table to my class. I have search but cannot find them in TPT or TN. How can I get that elusive 5? Thanks!
    sherrymatheson@gmail.com

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  18. I'm working in a Title I school this year with very limited resources. My desks are all mismatching and in terrible shape! Would contact paper work over chips and/or sections that have parts broken off? I want to make the classroom look better for the kiddos and give them better work areas! I'd love your advice :)

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