Family has a way...

Discussion in 'New Teachers' started by gmer22, Jul 27, 2007.

  1. gmer22

    gmer22 Rookie

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    Jul 27, 2007

    I am so down...I called my cousin who has been teaching for quite a while to ask her if she had any bulletin boards or materials that she wasn't using that I could use for back to school. I have no money right now and won't get paid until Sept. 24 so I won't have any money to buy any of the things I want to buy. I want to build a library...decorate...do this and that. And she just plane out won't help me. Said she didn't have time to look for things and made me feel like I was stupid. I asked for advice on how to make lesson plans and she told me...'well what did you study that you don't know how?' ohhhh my gosh I felt horrible....I am a Spanish major with minor in Eng. I don't know how to teach...the other subj...but I promise to become a great teacher without her help. I will figure it out...I am just feel down right now.
     
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  3. MsWK

    MsWK Habitué

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    Jul 27, 2007

    Sorry you're bummed & your cousin sucks. :p If you have a good printer, you can make a TON of stuff using clip art and microsoft word. On the upside, it's better if you start out the year with less things and slowly add as the year goes on. You can decorate with the children's work, and you may be surprised at the things you can get at your school (or that other teachers will give you because they're tired of it!). Once you get to your school, you'll have access to all sorts of supplies, a laminating machine, etc. You may have lots of late nights those first few months, but you can do it! :)
     
  4. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Jul 27, 2007

    Time to get creative. First try to find out if your school has some kind of planning/prep/whatever they call it room with supplies just for this kind of thing.

    Then I want you to carefully go through your house on a spring cleaning spree and see what you can repurpose or modify for a fun decorating twist. For example, stores don't seem to really carry sticker books like they did when I was growing up. You know the kind with the waxy surface on each page and some kind of scenery or words. My toddler is really picking up with collecting stickers as part of his postive reward system. So I looked around. I plan to print scenery. Then I'm not sure if I'm going to use sheet protectors or if I'm going to glue it on index cards and use wide clear mailing tape to "laminate it." My point is look around!!

    Do you have fabric, old curtains, construction paper (if your school doesn't have background paper). Use it! You can technically print borders but I'm not sure about that. Sometimes I go borderless. Do some 3D stuff and nobody will notice. You could even cut out some shapes and make your own garland like border. It is more time consuming but it will get you by in a pinch.

    Pay attention to sales. Penny sales at Staples stocks up some basic supplies. Clearance stuff OFTEN stocks our art cabinets. I repurpose stuff constantly. You could even use buttons, etc for math manipulatives, etc.

    Ask friends with kids if they have books and stuff to give away. I will gladly give it away if someone will save me a trip to goodwill!!

    Forget your cousin. Shock her with your own dose of creativity!!

    Again, find out what kind of furniture, bulletin board/prep supplies/office supplies, class library etc your classroom will already have. Start there.
     
  5. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Jul 27, 2007

    Sorry to hear that your cousin is being uncooperative. Is she always this grumpy?!

    Now's the time to use your creativity! Look around your home for things you don't need. For example, you can make paper flowers out of magazine pages. Visit the dollar stores too!

    Have fun!
     
  6. gmer22

    gmer22 Rookie

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    Jul 27, 2007

    Thanks everyone I am feeling better:)...I was feeling down and out:(...but I have a world map poster...I have some painting from Quebec, Canada and a lot of pics from NYC and Europe that I have taking around my travels. I am gonna print them out and do an around the world theme...that is all I have to work with right now but I think it will work what do you all think???
     
  7. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Jul 27, 2007

    Sounds Fabulous! (You probably have a lot more to work with if you really look!) You have a good start!
     
  8. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

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    Jul 27, 2007

    I was worried too last summer being that it was my first year teaching and I had NOTHING!! Ironically, I looked around my house and found so much that I could use. For example, I didn't have a "teacher chair" for my classroom, wanted a rocking chair but couldn't afford it, then I came across a folding chair made of fabric that you might take to the park to sit on. It worked perfect all year! It is blue and fit right into my color scheme.
    I also needed a little rug for my reading area and found an old colorful rug that my daughter used in her bedroom that worked very well! I had a few artificial plants in my house (I love artificial plants because I never have time to water) and I took a few in to decorate the classroom. I found a lamp, baskets etc. etc. right in my house to use. It all worked out until I got my first paycheck, and then I splurged!!!:lol:
     
  9. loves2teach

    loves2teach Enthusiast

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    Jul 27, 2007

    My school also has a table where teachers put items that they do not want anymore. Ours usually has decorations on it.

    Your mentor teacher might know of someone who can lend you things as well. I had to do that when I started teaching- I borrowed a ton of things from the teacher next door. She really saved my life!
     
  10. armygirl8894

    armygirl8894 Rookie

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    Jul 27, 2007

    Hey friend, go to your nearest Dollar tree & Target store. They have lots of cheap teacher things. Things like stickers, small pocket charts, pencils, notepads, pre-made letters for bulletin boards, etc. Hey have you ever been to the flea markets in Brownsville or Mission? You need to go, I have found so many cheap things for my classroom there. Especially BOOKS! Used and new that people will gladly sell you for no money at all. About 3 wks ago I went to the flea market in Mission and bought a box of gently used kid's books for $10. I also found a box of new unopened BB bordette for 4 for $1. Last year sometime I was at the flea market in Brownsville and bought a laundry basket of books for $10. Just tell people that you're a teacher and they will gladly let you have it for cheap, or nothing. They just don't want to have to take it back home. Try it, I guarantee you'll find lots of great things!!!! Before you know it, you'll have lots of neat things for your classroom. I like your theme about your traveling. You could probably find a globe at like Goodwill or the Flea Market! :D Good luck! If you need anymore suggestions count on me. I'll give you the hook up!
     
  11. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Jul 28, 2007

    Yes, sounds good. That will be very interesting!
     
  12. SaraFirst

    SaraFirst Cohort

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    Jul 28, 2007

    My cousin is also a teacher and we share things with each other all the time. I guess we're lucky.

    I get a lot of ideas from the Internet and our public library has some "teacher" idea books. You can check them out and copy some ideas for bulletin boards, etc.
     
  13. paperheart

    paperheart Groupie

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    Jul 28, 2007

    Hey. We live so close. I can get together with you to give you some posters. I still have a few posters left that will suit 3rd grade. Unfortunately, I got rid of a lot of that stuff already, but I think I still have some stuff at home (if not I can get in to my school and see what I have there.)

    Maybe if you call School Tools (a part of the food bank on 23rd street in Mcallen that lets teachers get donations.) they can help you out too. They may say no because they are not operating in the summer and offer supplies to teachers in schools that are on a certain list and who pay $5 a teacher but it would be worth a try to call them. They might be able to hook you up with a donor.

    Also donorschoose.com was just written up in Women's Day magazine. Now would probably be a good time to put a listing of materials you would like since they are having traffic.

    Just send me an email or pm and I will try and get some materials to you. I'll be out of town Wed-Sun but can get them ready today if you want them before Tuesday. I don't have a ton of bulleten board stuff but I think I may have at least something you'll find useful.

    also, the Goodwill in Pharr has some great stuff you can use and every other Saturday is 50% off. Today is one of them. (I know because I went there last Saturday and it wasn't...) They get stuff from Target clearance and resell it. It is wonderful if you haven't checked it out. Last week they had these fantastic posters on stretched canvas that were probably about $20 at Target. One was the U.S. and one was the solar system. They would be $5 today (if they are still there.They only had one of each.)
     
  14. paperheart

    paperheart Groupie

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    Jul 28, 2007

    I just cleaned out my closet (my classroom in a closet, my husband says. lol)
    I did find some decoration stuff and also some teaching resources. Here's what I found so you can plan ahead:

    --Bulletin board border--its too young for my 7th graders but it is SOO cute. Its a whole pack. Its just not laminated. Here is a link http://www.barkercreek.com/prod.php?p=BCPLL-906B&k=61183&PHPSESSID=b7f7f92c9ec0b45dbb8cf12dd2d496b8
    some white wrapping material that wrapped some plates I got from ---Crate and Barrell. I used it one year as a net on a bulliten board and added fish around it for a good catch themed bulliten board
    ---some big, pink laminated posterboards I made for reading mini lessons. They are a bunch of graphic organizers commonly used on TAKS.
    ---small phases of the moon poster
    ---Days of the week and months of the year posters
    ---Caddo Native Americans poster---its big, a little beat up, but laminated so it should smooth out okay.
    --3 posters I made--verbs, anotonyms/syns, and nouns
    ---short vowel sounds small posters (I made them)
    ---an All About Me bull. board set (has titles for When I grow up, My family etc. and some pictures with other prompts
    --an animal themed ABC cursive letters room border. It is missing the Y and Z piece :( but you could cut out the animals for a bulletin board display if you didn't want to use it. It is laminated, but the ABC ones at Dollar Tree are only, well, a dollar.
    ---A poster from Pizza Hut's Book it program
    Good news is most everything is laminated

    Resources:
    ---The Bag Ladies Sampler (fun activities to do with a paper bag or plate)
    ---many loose papers and some transparencies to use for reading lessons
    ---There's a few loose sheets you could copy and color for a bulletin board or wall display that have to do with Reading Comprehension aspects ("Recall Facts and Details, Distinguish Fact and Opinion" etc.)
    --some funny poems on transparency (good for fluency)
    --a bunch of random sheets for writing lessons
    --some half-finished writers workshop folders and a small set of for a version in Spanish
    --some 4th grade TAKS reading stuff
    ---a 3rd-5th grade Make and Take Workshop for reading materials (file folder games etc.)
    ---A Gourmet Curriculum binder with some fun reading activities
    ---Multi Meaning Words worksheet book
    ---some laminated Dolch words sheets for student practice
    --a few misc. reading teacher resource books
    --One of the binders from the 3rd grade TX Reading Academy (think it is the one with the fluency exercises) and a CD Rom of the 4th grade curriculum which is almost exactly the same.
    ---some file folder games. I inherited these from another teacher. Some are surely missing pieces.

    I hope these things are helpful. I am happy to give them away to you if you think they will be helpful Just let me know if you want them or if you want some and not others, that is fine too!. It is all good stuff, not junk because I only took my fave stuff of mine (though some stuff I left was great but from the district).
     
  15. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    Jul 29, 2007

    You can also find some cheap things at Big Lots.
     
  16. SittinInATree

    SittinInATree Companion

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    Aug 1, 2007

    I think that is great! Less is more anyway and I agree that you should wait and add stuff slowly, that way you won't overdo it.

    I do think it is great that you aren't out there buying a bunch of stuff with a credit card. very smart!

    Good luck and sorry your cousin was a butthead! :whistle:
     
  17. kidatheart

    kidatheart Habitué

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    You can use a flat sheet as a background to a bulletin board, you could take an old calendar with beautiful pics in it and use it to create a sort of visual quilt. The dollar store is a great resource as it the $1 aisle at Target! ASk your coworkers, I am so sure that they will understand!!
    Boo to your sister and HIP HIP HOORAY to you!
     
  18. willsgirl

    willsgirl Comrade

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    Aug 2, 2007

    I did an around the world theme second semester last year. I teach English, but I'm real big on cultural stuff. I focused on "A World of Reading". The school I was in was pretty tight with money, they didn't pay us very well at all, and I am on a tight budget at home, so I had to be resourceful. I ended up free-hand sketching a world map ( printed off an example from a geography site on the iternet), die cut my words, and stapled them over the world map in an arch (it was a small bb). I did have access to bb paper and that helped. I couldn't tell what you will be teaching, but if you're teaching Spanish and English, then you can highlight in some way the countries that speak one or the other or both and show the connections. For me, the hardest part was coming up with a theme. I thought it was pretty cheezy at first, but everyone really liked it.
     
  19. willsgirl

    willsgirl Comrade

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    Aug 2, 2007

    Oh, sorry, didn't notice...1st Grade. Hmmm, lost on that one. Also, glad someone else brought it up, but yes, hit the Dollar Store of your choice and scrounge around. Also, Target's $1 aisle (usually at the front) often has real cool stuff. I couldn't survive without these resources.
     
  20. bridge

    bridge Rookie

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    Aug 2, 2007

    Did I miss it? Did anyone mention YARD SALES???? I once found a 6ft. fake ficus tree at one for $5 and hauled it home across 3 states for my classroom so my students could sit under a tree when they read! And stuffed animals are great for lots of ages-certainly for 1st grade.
    Is your cousin jealous?????????
     
  21. gmer22

    gmer22 Rookie

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    Aug 2, 2007

    Thanks for all the support. Everything seems to be looking up. The teachers for my grade level team are great and the teacher before me left a lot of stuff for me to use. The other teachers said they would give some stuff and help me out. I am so greatful....feel so much better:) I also found some great things at the dollar store and will be hitting yard sales. Thanks guys
     
  22. willsgirl

    willsgirl Comrade

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    Aug 2, 2007

    I think decorating a classroom is kinda like decorating a home. You acquire stuff, choose specific stuff, and just let it grow to where it needs to be. Maybe HGTV should have a classroom decorating show (for the budget minded, of course!) ;)
     

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