Preparing for a New Year

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Howdy, blog readers!

I realize I haven’t had much to say yet this month. I have the privilege to keep my school keys year-round, so I’ve been working in my classroom for the last few weeks already!

I filled a 32-gallon recycling container of papers that I no longer need.

I got rid of the two desktop computers, which opened up a table that my kids can use for collaborative work. I also built a 20-laptop charging cart for my classroom. (Side note: the nice trucker who delivered it said, “Hope your maintenance guy has fun putting that together!” I just laughed and said, “Well, that’s me!”)

I’ve been going through and cataloging (or trying to) the classroom library with my Book Retriever app on my iPhone. It’s completely frustrating when the book is so old that either there’s no UPC or the UPC doesn’t point to the ISBN! Although, I’m not sure books about the girls dorm during freshman year of college are developmentally appropriate for a 6th grade classroom, so I will probably just get rid of them.

My next few tasks are to block out all my new classes for this year. One class (7th grade science) is staying the same, so I even though I’ve only taught it for one year, I have a decent idea how my plans are going to block out. The other classes I will have this upcoming year are: 6th grade science, 6th grade English, 8th grade Geometry, and 6th grade Reading. I’ve also offered to help the 5th grade teacher when she comes into my room to teach music, since my piano skills are a little better than hers.

I have two preps this year, one of which is going to be mine for correcting and planning, and the other I offered to help each other grade level in my school develop one unit plan per quarter, with the goal of inserting more technology into our lessons. We will have a mobile laptop cart for K-5 and 7-8, so I don’t want it to sit gathering dust!

I’m really excited about the Chromebooks and all we can do with them. We officially switched over to Google Apps for Education on Friday. We still have some email switchovers to do in some of the offices that were vacant for the weekend by the time we got to them. Hopefully not too much email has come in over the weekend.

My cat just crawled across my computer, signaling that this blog post should be over!

Here’s a first-day prayer that I found as I was blog-hopping today. It was on the blog “Technology Rocks, seriously.

[scribd id=102619407 key=key-wucod2wch9ifjsl2b9n mode=list]

I will leave you with a question: what’s the one thing you always have to do when you’re getting ready for the first day? Do you have any first-day activities to share?

Keep a song in your heart!

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