Wednesday, August 7, 2013

First Day of 4th Grade

The day finally arrived! On Tuesday, August 6th, it was the first day of school for me :) My door decoration was inspired by Uncle Roy. Thanks to his idea for a beach theme this year I used the construction paper I saved up to make my own door decoration! My students' names are written all over the different parts of the construction paper. I'm Chinese.. so anything I can make & not spend money is well worth the time ;)

I also updated my teacher toolbox from last year. This year, I went chevron theme for sure! Thank you to Rebecca Rojas from Create Teach Share for the inspired toolbox.

My classroom set-up would not have been possible without my friend, Angela! She came to visit me after she finished doing kindergarten testing to help me quickly put things away! I still have a lot of books to go through, and sort my resources. But at least the students don't know right? ;)

FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL ACTIVITIES consisted of asking my students for their personal opinions. I really wanted to know what they are hoping to get out of me (as their teacher this year.) Many of them mentioned simply "teaching," but some actually took to heart what they want to learn about! I was so happy to hear their thoughts and ideas. It also gave me an idea of what they're used to seeing. My challenge will be getting into science (I love social studies way more.. but hopefully I'll be able to tap into their brains as to why they love science so much.)

Classroom Rules. The following rules were the rules the children thought of on the first day of school. Each table group created one rule, but I had one group go back and rethink because this conversation came up:

Me: What rule would you like us to follow in class?
Student: We will always call you Miss Agcaoili and not teacher!

I explained to the students how I wanted them to learn how to say my name, and not to call me "teacher." As they are in the 4th grade, I feel they are old enough to learn how to say and get to know different names. At the end of the collaborative classroom rules activity, the students and I signed our names on the bottom to signify that we will abide these rules.

Interactive Calendar. Lastly, this pinterest inspired calendar is something I want to try this year. As we are an AVID school, I saw on pinterest how a dorm room wall was made into a calendar. As AVID is a school-wide organizational system, I felt that students will be able to learn how to complete a monthly character. Ironically, my calendar pocket chart somehow disappeared in my boxes! But, this also gave me an opportunity to be creative for the 4th graders. I will model for them during the month of August how to fill in the calendar, but as time goes on, the students will be completing the calendar for our class. We will have a calendar monitor starting next week, but I will coach the students as to how to keep track of the calendar :)

So far, I'm enjoying my class. I just finished day 2, and the students have been very cooperative and helpful. I'm excited to work with upper elementary this year and to take on the challenge of state standardized testing. Here's to a new school, new grade level, new school year, and new beginnings :)

Dress: Banana Republic // Belt: Banana Republic old // Watch: Fossil old

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