Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Power of the Sun

Oh my!  I can almost taste the end of the school year!  Only 43 days or, as I like to think of it, only 8 more Fridays!  It has me thinking about blogging over the summer.  I've not carried this blog over a summer.  I really started in this past August.  I was able to do a lot of posts about getting ready for school and then the school year sort of generates its own topics.  I have to be honest, I'm sort of wondering how I am going to do this over the summer.  Do any other teacher bloggers out there have any suggestions?  I might do a post later requesting some ideas!  For now, I'm sort of thinking along these lines:

1.  I want to do a lot A LOT summer reading of kid books.  My friends read more than a lot, and I haven't been keeping up with their books so well.  This should give me some book related posts.
2.  I applied to teach summer school this year.  Over my 15 years teaching, I've probably taught summer school eleven out of the fifteen years.  I like it because it runs in the morning, so I am done by 12:00.  The school is also about five minutes from my house, so it's an easy gig in those respects.  Experience tells me summer school will provide plenty of topics!
3.  Okay. . . stumped!  I usually do some revision of my curriculum over the summers, but I am so done for this year.  I don't even want to think about curriculum over the summer!  Having said that, there are two professional books on my shelf that I just haven't gotten to, so I might tackle those over the summer.

I'll have to see how it goes.  I always have a slight panic that I won't have a topic to post about, but something always pops up.  :-)  I just know I want to enjoy my summer this year more than ever!

How funny is that?  I really am planning to do a lot of "what I think I do" with a good deal of "what I really do" thrown in!  I honestly believe that summer vacation for teachers isn't a perk but a psychological necessity!

. . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Does your classroom get a lot of sun?  I have to say that my classroom does.  I'm on the second floor of the school.  If you look out my window, there is a really pretty courtyard below, but when you look across you have a clear view to a pretty area of woods.  I have a really nice view.  However, in the afternoon my classroom is flooded with sunlight.  In the winter it's really nice, but in the summer it makes for a very hot room. 

One thing I haven't really paid attention to is how much it fades the posters in my room.  I think I don't notice it much because all my bulletin boards are covered in Fadless bulletin board paper.
Do you use this stuff?  I love it!  It truly never fades.  I can go years without replacing the paper as long as I haven't put too many holes in it. :-)  I think it's well worth the money.  I know some people like to use fabric, table cloths, or other things for bulletin boards, but I'll stick with my Fadeless.  They even have many different patterns if you are looking for more variety.  The only other time I switched it out was to use newspaper to cover a current events bulletin board.

Anyway, this is the job chart that hangs in my classroom.
I made this after looking at prepackaged job charts.  I wanted something smaller and something I could customize to the jobs in my classroom.  Here's a closer look.

 I just made a two column chart in Word and typed in the various jobs I wanted.  Then, I found clip art that matched and stuck it in.  When I was done, it came to two and a half pages that I just glued to two pieces of 12x18 construction paper.  Then, I laminated it all and stuck on some magnetic tape.  We just write on it with a wet erase marker.   Notice that pledge is crossed out?  It was a classroom job, but our new principal decided morning announcements to now include the pledge so we all say it at the same time.  Nice, I guess, but it took a popular job away from my friends.   You might also notice that I left some blank spaces at the bottom.  This works out great if you decide to add a job at any time.  It's also great for special jobs that may only be for a period of time.  For example, when our Student Council runs a special collection, the job of collecting the supplies becomes a job.

Anyway, I really bring up my job chart to say that is how I noticed how the sun has been fading my posters.  Here is glimpse of the back of the job chart.

See that bright blue?  That's what color the chart was in front, too.  Not any more!  I need to redo my job chart.  I'm thinking I might use the Fadeless paper this time.  It will be sort of flimsy as the Fadless isn't as thick as the constructin paper, but I think the laminating will help it hold up. 

By the way, see the big X next to the job of Plants?  That job is to water the plants once a week.  The X?  Yeah, we killed them this year.  I hadn't really paid much attention to them until one day I noticed all our plants, with the exception of one, were dead.  Seems I had two forgetful friends take that job two months in a row.  Not good for the plants.  I told them it was surely a good thing we didn't have a class pet! 

See you next post!


  1. Love your Teacher Summer Vacation!!!! I am a BIG fan of the black fadeless paper. It lasts forever!

  2. I'm kind of thinking the same thing :) I'm going to definitely try to do some Pinterest projects and post about those, organize my classroom (finally) and post about that, read some new books (teachery and children's) and post about those, and definitely how I plan for the new year.

    I'm also the kind of dork that sees teaching ideas even when I try to turn the 'teacher' off, so I'm sure ideas will crop up :) I bet they will for you, too!

    Luckeyfrog's Lilypad

  3. So glad I found your blog today! I am your newest follower:) Stop by and visit me...

  4. I was wondering if you could do a post about the homework you assign nightly. Do you give Math homework every night? Do you give homework at all? There is a big dispute in my district about whether or not to give homework at all, and I would love to hear your opinion since I consider your blog gospel! :)

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