I can't believe that in two weeks I will have finished our staff days and will be doing last minute preparation for Monday morning back to school faces. Where has the summer gone?
I still have much to do but am also feeling good about what I've accomplished the summer. This past week I spent two days in my room doing a major clean-out/reorganization. I went through every little thing that is out and decided if it was something we were going to use this year or not. If it was something we wouldn't use I organized it in to "get rid of" or "store away". I then cleared out a couple of cabinets and shelves that we have a hard time getting to and put all the "store away" things there.
Then it was on to organizing the things that were left. I sorted and shelved everything by skill. To make room on the shelves and to make things flow easier during the year I took severl of our "programs" and moved them from binders and bins to file folders and put them in the filing cabinet (but I need another filing cabinet - lol). All of these programs are step-by-step programs - you master one step and move on to the next - so it will be great to just be able to pull the file of the current step that a student is on and keep it with his/her programming materials until that step is done. I did this with Edmark Reading, PCI Environmental Printing, Reading for All Learners Program, the Money Skills program that I created (loosely based on F.A.C.E.S. curriculum) and the Primary Phonics Program I've been working on this summer. I am thinking I may also start organizing a few other things this way as well (all in good time). I am also in the proces of taking all of the file folder activities, interactive books, matching cards, envelope activities and putting them in to bins based on skill. Right now I have bins for Number/Counting, Addition/Subraction, Letters/Printing, Phonics/Sounds, Pre-academic Skills and Other. I'm sure as these grow I will add bins and seperarte but it will be nice to just be able to grab what is needed.
Finally I carved out one whole shelf per student in the room. This is where their binders and programming materials will go. If they are working on a specific skill the materials for that skill can be stored on their shelf for the time they are working on it and then returned to the place it came from (which will be easy as it is all labeled).
I'm feeling good about the organization of the room. Now I just need to use these last few weeks to get everything together in all of these individual programming binders that are in various states of completion (or more like incompletion). Its going to be a haul yet but I'm feeling confident I can get it done in time for learning assistant orientation 13 days from now :). Wish me luck!