Friday, August 7, 2015

How Setting Up My Classroom Is Like Writing

It's back to school time! I've been frantically trying to set up my classroom. I've moved furniture, put up posters and borders, and sorted items into areas in the room. I haven't located what I did with the batteries, but I'm sure they will turn up.

I found a pedometer and put it on halfway through my day. I logged 2 miles in my classroom. It says 4,598 steps. I came home tired. It didn't feel like I worked that hard, but I guess 4 miles of walking will do that.

The next day I put on the pedometer as I walked to my car. When I walked out of school hours later it said 5 miles.

But besides the exercise of the back to school frantic rush, there was this one revelation...

I've realized I set up my classroom the same way I write a book. 

First, the outline.  I make a floor plan of my room and decide where all the students will go and where all the academic parts will take place. I make a schedule and decide which groups go where and when.

Next, the rough draft. I pull out all of the things pertaining to that area, making it very cluttered. Every toy, device, paper, file, or writing utensil as needed are right there in the right place. But they aren't all used at the same time.

Then, I have to edit these areas like I edit stories. Is this really necessary right now? Can I put it someplace else? I have taken out the things I'm going to use first and left them in the areas in an organized way while putting everything else in the closet. I can rotate toys and books and vocational work tasks later. I don't need a shelf of them hanging around looking slightly messy.

Then it's time to work on the cover art. In my room, I decorate with posters, bulletin board borders, and pictures. I make it look fun and cool and presentable as best I can.
Now, to spend my last free weekend of summer NOT worrying about school!