I have nothing in my class!!

Discussion in 'New Teachers' started by MsBee, Aug 10, 2009.

  1. MsBee

    MsBee Devotee

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    Aug 10, 2009

    Went to see my classroom today and I have nothing. Only desks and a teacher table. I have to start from scratch.

    What would you recommend I get?

    I got caddies for each group..for pencils, markers, etc.
    A tall funky lamp
    Med bins for each group so they can keep their books in them to read when they are done with their work.(I don't like them so I may take them back and get baskets with handles on them)

    I got pillows and a rug for the reading center and that is about all.


    I have no idea what things I need for centers and what type of centers I need. I will go to the first grade forum and ask that.

    But what else do I need to purchase seriously. I have nothing.
     
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  3. clarnet73

    clarnet73 Moderator

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    Aug 10, 2009

    You need somewhere to store manipulatives and other materials.

    Chart stands for chart paper, big books, etc.

    Bookcase or something to put the books in in your library

    That's starters :)
     
  4. KMJteach

    KMJteach New Member

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    Aug 10, 2009

    It sounds like you're off to a great start! Even though it's stressful, I think that setting up a classroom is one of the most exciting times of the year.

    I would recommend determining a layout for your room and getting any furniture you need first. See what's available at your school and, if you're on your own, check out thrift stores, garage sales, and craigslist. I've had really good luck finding very specific furniture for my room on craigslist and never pay more than $10 or so per item.

    For me, lots of shelving is a must. Other things I would think about: bins for your library books, classroom library books for that matter (thrift stores), lots of containers and bins for organizing supplies (the dollar store), overhead/cart, any community school supplies (depending on what your students will or won't bring in), clipboards. I also love having mini white boards and markers for each student.

    I'm also very into creating a comfortable, welcoming space so I love adding lamps, plants (I do fake-- otherwise they die!), and rugs.

    Like I said, sounds like you're off to a great start. Good luck!
     
  5. ILoveMyCello

    ILoveMyCello Companion

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    Aug 10, 2009

    Go to libraries and see if they have any old books they are discarding. Also, theres a Dollar store (I think Family Dollar) that has a fab teacher section.

    Also, stock up on crayons and pencils. Walmart has the best prices.

    If your room is carpeted, find a hand vac with an attachable handle (usually around 20$ at the dollar store)

    Good luck!!! I am in the exact same position as you...
     
  6. Miss84

    Miss84 Comrade

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    Aug 10, 2009

    I am in the same position...but I am pretty sure your room is bigger than mine. And probably updated..I have wood panel on half of the wall. *Yuck* Anyway I plan on getting a lot of wall coverings-posters, motivational signs, class rules, etc, a rug, book shelf, a rocking chair (hopefully), and small tables and chairs for centers. That's all I can fit in there, I really wish I had more room but at least I have a room at all.
     
  7. MsR

    MsR Rookie

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    Aug 13, 2009

    A rocking chair is a must! Again, Craigslist is a fantastic idea, it's where I just got mine. I just got my classroom too, but I have the exact opposite problem...my room came with tons of junk in it! I have more science supplies than any teacher ever needs, and nowhere to put any of it!
     
  8. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Aug 13, 2009

    WAIT, STOP!!!!!


    I was away in Disney and missed the news. Where are you teaching????


    Congrats!!!!!!!!!!
     
  9. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

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    Aug 13, 2009

    MsBee,
    Whatever you do, don't assume you have to buy everything. Be incredibly frugal right now. Keep it to the bare minimum.

    Go to your principal and find out what is available -- there may be a closet chucked full of construction and chart paper someplace. Also, when the other teachers are setting up, you will see all kinds of things pushed out to the hallway with a sign that says "trash" or "up for grabs." You can get some amazing stuff. Also send a schoolwide email to your new colleagues telling them you are moving to the area and couldn't bring anything with you, and if anyone has gently used things that need a new home, you'd be glad to oblige.

    Some school give out a certain dollar amount to new teachers officially. Some do it unofficially. Some don't do it at all. But one thing I can promise you -- if you are willing to go out and buy it all with your own money, most principals will be glad to let you!!!

    Do a little at a time, and by the end of the year, you will have more "stuff" than you know what to do with.

    Also -- if you have family -- considering getting someone in your family to throw you a "new teacher" shower. They are all the rage right now.

    It sounds like you are making great progress so far!!!
     
  10. krysmorgsu

    krysmorgsu Cohort

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    Aug 13, 2009

    I actually need a chart stand, but I really don't want to invest in it (they get us the chart paper that's like a giant post-it, but I'd rather not rip it off if it's something I'll reuse). Do you know where I can get one for cheap?
     
  11. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

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    I bought a garment rack from Target one year -- about $15. It was on wheels, too! Then added two old-fashioned shower rings (metal) and voile!!! instant chart stand.

    I don't have room for it anymore (if you want to drive to Virginia, I'd be glad to let you have it) so now I just have two screws attached to the top of my chalkboard that exactly match the two holes on the chart paper. It works great.
     
  12. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Aug 13, 2009

    I had the caretakers install 2 long screws behind my classroom door to hand chartpaper on. It's out of the way and when I need to use it I just tear off a sheet or two and attach it to my whiteboard with magnets.
     
  13. Jenstc2003

    Jenstc2003 Companion

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    Aug 13, 2009

    I love the idea of a new teacher shower!
     
  14. Miss84

    Miss84 Comrade

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    Aug 13, 2009

    I'll take it! LOL (but seriously, I am in VA)
    I was just thinking about chart paper/stand, but the prices! :huh:
    I'm hoping I'll find a secret storage room somewhere full of things so I will not become broke by the time school starts.
     
  15. MsBee

    MsBee Devotee

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    Aug 13, 2009

    YEA!! You missed everything. I went on my first interview in VA and got a job teaching first grade. I had to cancel all the other ones and find an apartment while there. Saw my class and everything!!
     
  16. teacheragz

    teacheragz Rookie

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    Aug 13, 2009

    Congrats on beautiful VA! Where in VA?
    First grade is the BEST grade! I absolutely love it. I don't however enjoy the whole setting up the classroom business. I'm just not very good at it...
    I've had rooms (well...a portable actually) that was totally bare and twice now have moved into rooms full of all kinds of crap!
    Either way there have been some great suggestions!

    My thoughts this year are to keep it simple. Lots of books (for read alouds and independent reading), open floor space for centers - I got so sick of all the clutter and furniture last year! Manipulatives for Math and Science. A nice big table for guided reading.

    Good luck
     
  17. krysmorgsu

    krysmorgsu Cohort

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    Aug 14, 2009

    Well, VA is a little far...but I'm thinking about your ideas. I'll have to see what maintenance can do for me!
     
  18. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Aug 14, 2009

    Ms Bee, I am so thrilled for you!!!! You worked so very hard to get this job-- I just KNOW it's where you're meant to be!!! And that you'll be one of those teachers that kids remember fondly long after they're out of your class.

    As to what you need: obviously I'm not the pro here. But keep in mind: it's what you teach and how you teach that matter, not all the extras. So stay within your budget-- you can build stuff up slowly as you go along.

    I think that if I were a new primary teacher on a budget, I would be sure I had a great printer and lots of paper at home-- the internet can probably supply you with lots of posters and stuff until you can afford longer lasting stuff. And put some money aside for when Scholastic, Barnes and Noble and other places have their big sales; you'll be able to stock up a lot then. (I know B&N always has a big sale right after Christmas-- my kids always get a nice supply of books then.)

    Anyway, I'll leave the bulk of the advice to the pros here. I just really wanted to congratulate you!!
     
  19. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

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    Well, if you want to come down to the Virginia Beach area, just let me know!!! :)
     
  20. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

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    MsBee,
    If you are going to be teaching 1st grade in Virginia, then you need to acquaint yourself with Mr. Hostetter's web page. It is an amazing resource page for Virginia's 1st grade standards.

    http://www.quia.com/pages/sol1.html

    Have fun!!!
     
  21. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

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    I found it! Here is the other webpage you will need. This page, by Rockingham School District, is fabulous! I use the 2nd grade version all the time, but here is the 1st grade version.

    http://www.rockingham.k12.va.us/resources/elementary/1history.htm (And be surprise -- it is maintained by Mr. Hostetter.) No, I don't know him, but he's got some great stuff online.
     
  22. MsBee

    MsBee Devotee

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    Aug 14, 2009

    Seriously thanks everyone and Alice!!! I really did work hard to get where I am now. I'm so happy and proud of myself.
     
  23. emmakate218

    emmakate218 Connoisseur

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    Aug 15, 2009

    If you have an IKEA nearby, check there for organizational things. They also have garment racks that work well for chart stands.

    Target and Wal-Mart usually have sales this time of year for metal shelving systems. I bought two last year and used them for my book bins. You can also find the metal cubbie systems in case you need an area for your students to store their backpacks and whatnot.

    Also check out Target's $1 area. Last year, Target had a bunch of certificates, name tags, bookmarks, etc. and little pocket charts.

    You definitely need a chair to sit on during your circle/meeting time. IKEA sells cheap, cute looking chairs.

    If you have the money, buy a small set of mini whiteboards and you can incorporate them into your writing center.

    Do you have a boombox for playing music? I bought one for about $25 at Target last year.
     
  24. emmakate218

    emmakate218 Connoisseur

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    Oh, just thought....

    How about the headers for your word wall?

    Also, you can buy a set of fly swatters at The Dollar Tree and use them for a "Read the Room" center. Last year, I bought a set of huge, comical fly swatters from The Dollar Tree. They're so huge!

    A few clipboards are also handy to have.
     
  25. ABall

    ABall Fanatic

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    Aug 26, 2009

    Don't forget to check the good will and salvation army for books to start your reading library...... tell them you are a new teacher maybe they will give you a discount...... I also get a discount at o0ur second hand book store.
     
  26. History Nut

    History Nut Rookie

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    Aug 27, 2009

    Try Yahoo Freecycle. We often have teachers in search of materials.
     
  27. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    Aug 27, 2009

    Everyone is so excited and happy for you and have some great ideas.

    I can't help but add, "and in your spare time......" (lol) It would take a long time to check out all those places. Just remember it is you not the stuff that is important and you will gradually build a great classroom environment. Don't worry if it isn't perfect the first year, especially in these budgetary times.
     
  28. Miss J. Pre-K

    Miss J. Pre-K Comrade

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    Aug 30, 2009

    I would also check out your PTO/PTA. Mine gives a few hundred dollars to each teacher to be spent on their classroom each year. Also, if you're haven't asked parents to buy school supplies, you should make a list of things they need to bring in and send it home the first week. I'm not allowed to "ask" them to bring in school supplies. At my Open House, I'm thinking about having out a mini-Christmas tree with hanging star ornaments with a item we need on each star (kleenex, crayons, pens, clipboards, etc.) It will be my "Wishing Tree" as in I wish you would buy this stuff so it doesn't come out of my paycheck. :) Parents can take a star if they are going to buy an item.

    I think Dollar Tree is the dollar store with the great teacher section, but you have to go to a big one--my local one doesn't carry that much. Oriental Trading catalog (online as well) has a bunch of stuff for cheap.
     

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