You know you're a teacher when you see the school supply display in Walmart and you feel a little bit excited, a little bit nostalgic, a little bit apprehensive, and a lot of panic that the summer has gone way too fast and you were planning on doing so much, but it's nearly over, and now there is no time for that, so you start to cry a little bit in front of everyone at Walmart. Seriously though, I still get excited when I see school supplies. New school supplies mean a whole new start. Which is my favorite part of education. Each year is a new start.
Currently I'm not a classroom teacher. I used to teach English - which is why I ask you to ignore the long run-on sentence that started this post. Then I was a librarian because I love reading. (Side note: Literacy is vitally important for children's development. You'd be amazed at how much research there is about it, so read to your kids, Internet. Read to your kids.) Now I'm a mentor teacher for the University of Missouri. Which means I get to help new teachers, and right now those new teachers are working on getting their classroom set up. Which reminded me of the days when I would spend hours decorating and organizing my classroom, so I thought I'd share my old classroom with you.
My favorite thing in my classroom was my refrigerator door. I told Gma that I wanted an old fridge door, and within a month she'd found a refrigerator at a garage sale for $5. My dad took the door off for me, and made it to where I could mount it on my classroom wall. My students would hang assignments they were proud of on it. (Before I had a refrigerator door, I had a bulletin board where I just outlined the door, and turned my magnets into push pins.)
This is what it looked like without papers all over it.
I painted these one summer for my classroom. I don't take the time to stencil or outline; I just freehanded them in pencil, then went over it with paint. They aren't perfect, but it worked. Recently, I've taken to using an old overhead projector to trace quotes so they are a little neater.
I collect lunch boxes, so I displayed them in the back of my room. The READ letters come from Hobby Lobby. My favorite part of this photo, are the hanging baskets. Those come from Walmart. They're meant for dish drying, but I used them as turn-in trays.
This was the front of my classroom. See the SMART board? It could roll in and out of place, so the whiteboard was still able to be used. I loved it.
And this was my agenda board where I wrote our activity and homework for the day. I made the letters and laminated them, so I could write and erase each week.
So that's my old classroom. Although I do kind of wish I had Pinterest back then. I feel as though my classroom would have been at least 30% cuter had I been able to steal all the cool stuff I see there.