Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Inside September

About a month ago, I introduced you to my storage solution for my classroom.  (You can see that post [here] if you missed it.)  The underbed storage bins.  Guys, they are great!  If you pack them just right, they hold everything!

Since then, I've added a few things to my August bin, but it's all Conscious Discipline stuff, and it's all going into a separate bin labeled "Safe Place" when I pack up my room at the end of the upcoming school year.  I'll post about that stuff later.  I need to actually figure out what I'm doing with it first.

Did you know that Scholastic Reading Club flyers have these nifty little boxed sets that focus on sight words and specific phonics skills?  Of course you did.  You're a teacher!  You look at the flyers before you even pass them out.  Silly me.  (In the off chance that you're a new teacher - or a seasoned teacher that has just never used it - and you want to use Scholastic Reading Club flyers with your students, hit me up for some bonus points!  I will have 1,000 bonus points to give away next month, but only if you're a first-timer at the whole book clubs idea.  Sorry, veterans.)

Anyway.  Scholastic.  Boxed sets.  Definitely worth it!  It makes the phonics and sight word practice more meaningful to the students than those silly blackline master decodable books that come with our reading series.  (Yes, I use those, too.)

As for the other things in my September bin...

Pardon my dog.  She likes to get in the way and does not like when she isn't the one getting the attention.

Three ways to read a book goes up on the wall once we talk about it.  I used to write an anchor chart, but a giant three is better... Well, it was last year.  I don't know how I feel about it now.  I'll decide later if I want to use it or something else. 

"What to do when I'm through" is for writing.  There are three things my students may do when they 'finish' their writing.  They may add details to the picture, add details to the words, or start a new piece.  I ordered No More "I'm Done!" by Jennifer Jacobson, and I should get it this week.  We'll see what she says about those tiny friends that say they are finished.

"I can write a sentence that" has always been something that goes up in pieces.  The first one says "uses spaces between the words."  Then it goes on to include capital letters, end marks, spelling, etc.  Each piece goes up as we talk about it.  This takes time to get everything up.

The pink cards are high-frequency words from my basal series.  I also have a different color for Fry's sight words and Dolch words.  Math words, student choice words (interesting words found in reading), science words, etc. all have different colors.  They will go on the word wall as we learn them.

The rest of it is games and books.  Classroom library books as well as read alouds.  (My brilliant idea of the summer:  Skip-Bo at the start of the school year as math buddy games!  They have to put the numbers in sequential order... That's number recognition and rote counting to 12.  Review = check!)

The theme for the books in September's bin is "Books about School."  There are other books in the library already when the kids walk in the door, but these are books that I put out specifically in September and take them back out of the library at the end of the month.  They include:

The Librarian from the Black Lagoon by Mike Thaler

Don't Be Silly, Mrs. Millie! by Judy Cox

Flat Stanley:  Show-and-Tell Flat Stanley! by Lori Haskins Houran

Miss Mingo and the Fire Drill by Jamie Harper

Picture Day Perfection by Deborah Diesen

There was an Old Lady who Swallowed Some Books! by Lucille Colandro

What I Saw in the Teacher's Lounge by Jerry Pallotta

My New Teacher and Me by Al Yankovic

Clifford:  Time for School by Gail Herman

Our Cool School by Judy Katschke

Biscuit Goes to School by Alyssa Satin Capucilli

Annabelle Swift, Kindergartener by Amy Schwartz

If You Take a Mouse to School by Laura Numeroff

Amelia Bedelia's First Day of School by Herman Parish

Skippyjon Jones Class Action by Judy Schachner

Mittens at School Lola M. Schafer

David Goes to School. by David Shannon

Splat and the Cool School Trip by Rob Scotton

And because September begins moose season here in Alaska and we need to talk about moose safety...

Moose! by Robert Munsch

If You Give a Moose a Muffin by Laura Numeroff

And because we are beginning to talk about nouns and verbs as critical parts of sentences...

A Mink, a Fink, a Skating Rink:  What is a Noun? by Brian P. Cleary

To Root, to Toot, to Parachute:  What is a Verb? by Brain P. Cleary (sorry, no link)

Slide and Slurp, Scratch and Burp:  More about Verbs by Brian P. Cleary

When I put these books out at the end of August, I try to talk them up.  Give some incomplete summaries of a few of the books; tell them which books are my favorite.  It helps with the book selection.  I'll even choose read alouds from this stack if I need a time-filler.

Well, that's my collection of random things that happen in September.  Part of me feels like there is a lot that I didn't pack up... like things are missing from this box...  It was probably the dogs! ;)

Always wanting to be in the middle of everything... ;)

I'm looking forward to hearing about your ideas for rolling out the new year!


  1. Carrie, what a fun list of books for back to school in your September bin! Thank you for including Picture Day Perfection. If you'd like some bookmarks for your students to go with the book, I'd be happy to send you some. They say "Books help us picture life's possibilities, so read lots of them!"

    You can see a photo of the bookmarks over on my blog: http://jumpingthecandlestick.blogspot.com/2015/07/free-bookmarks-for-classrooms-and-other.html

    Happy Reading to you and your students!

    Debbie Diesen (author of Picture Day Perfection)

    1. Hi, Debbie!

      I am so glad that you stopped by my blog! My students (okay, let's face it, I) love your book! We read it on picture day. They think the whole thing is hilarious! Last year, I had a TA in my room while we were reading it. She, too, got a kick out of it. Great work! I'll be stopping by your blog today!