Hurricane Irene did us in!!
Sunday around 2 in the morning the rain started. It was a steady, heavy rain all day – our power went out at 2 in the afternoon Sunday when the heavy winds started. The rain kept up till about dinner time, but the winds were still getting worse. We decided to drive around and take some pictures, and then get ourselves some dinner, since we couldn’t cook. My neighbors lost 2 trees, another tree was laying across one of our roads. I even saw a tree on another neighbor’s house. Roads were flooded over, and some of the shoulders of the roads were gone. I can’t believe the damage we got, when we weren’t even near the coast! 18 hours of rain, 12 with heavy wind, and 19 hours without power (we didn’t get it back until 9:30 yesterday Morning)! Living in the country is definitely nice, but when you lose power you aren’t really a priority in the eyes of the power company – why fix the problem with only 14 customers without power when you can help more in the towns??
Needless to say, I ended up going to the school yesterday early in the morning, so I didn’t have to sit without power at home. I called the power company at 5 when I got out of bed (I couldn’t sleep anymore since I went to bed so early the night before!) and they told me to expect power back on at midnight – I was like, ummm…. Really? So I made the decision to go to the school and got there around 6. Ever had to get ready to go out in public in the dark, with only a little flashlight to help? I’m sure I looked pretty scary as I walked in the gas station to get a hot chocolate! I didn’t even do any makeup till I was at the school!
Anyway - I got a lot done once I got there, and I took some pics of the beginning of my centers. These are what will stay all year, and then I will change out the other activities based on the skills we are learning about at the time. Let me know what you think!
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This is the accelerated reader center. Books are sorted by reading level – the buckets are color coded based on their reading group. So, my kiddos know what group they are in, so they know what bin to select a book from. I have some handy little reference materials in each bucket – I’ll have to remember to take share a pic of what’s in them another time!
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Here is my writing center! Most of my centers have these shelves that I bought awhile ago – not only does it keep things organized, but the kids know what order to work through with their things! On the first shelf there are 4 folders in my reading group colors. This is how I differentiate the centers - the kids pull their folder and do the work that I selected just for them. I do this for most of my centers. You will also notice the work buckets I have at the center. This has crayons, scissors, glue, pencils, sharpener, erasers, markers, and colored pencils. That way, they don’t have to leave to get any supplies! I also have a book of writing helpers and a beginner’s thesaurus for them to use. The signs are from Christie at Teaching in Flip Flops!
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Next up is the fluency center. The fluency station is from Lakeshore (I love them!). This is a piece that I have wanted for a few years, but couldn’t justify buying when it was so expensive. But, when I moved up to 3rd I inherited it! Can’t wait to use it! On the right are the high frequency word cards separated again by reading group color. They practice these as soon as they get here, then move on to the other goodies. I have a handful of animal puppets in the back left corner – these are fun to use when reading, and they get silly and have fun while they get their work done. They came from Dollar Tree a few years ago, and my kiddos loved them last year, and will enjoy them again this year! I also have a whisper phone here.
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This is the comprehension center with tons of goodies! To start, I have my “egg-celent” comprehension eggs (thanks to Christina Bainbridge at Mrs. Bainbridge's Class), some story dice I have had for awhile, some fun brain feeler sticks (from Miss Knight’s Khronicals), my supply bucket, and my FAVORITE story wands (from you guessed it – Lakeshore!). These are so much fun, and I love using them with my kiddos (except for a few boys 2 years ago that seemed to think they resembled light sabers and not fun learning tools)!
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Thanks for taking a look! Tomorrow (Thursday) is the first day for staff. I am hoping to finish up, and get the most current pics up for you to see before my kiddos come back next Tuesday.
+ Laura +