August 23, 2013

Classroom Snapshots | 2013

Hi there! Wow, I've been super busy in my classroom this past week with setting up my classroom, professional development, and preparing for Back to School Night/Open House and I feel like I haven't had much time to connect with all my blogger friends. BUT...today I am linking up with Swimming into Second and showing off my classroom (yes, again) now that it's all coming together...finally!

Pinterest is a beautiful place to share and experiment with new ideas, especially as it relates to the bare bones of any classroom: it's organization. For years I've been on the search for the perfect setup, but every year I find something didn't work quite right and therefore I had to change it. But, this year I feel confident that a few of these newer ideas will be so helpful this upcoming school year!

So, here are a few snapshots of my classroom as I begin my second year in 2nd grade!

3M Hooks on Computers

This year I am using 3M hooks on the side of my computer screens to hold two headphones (our school provided headphone splitters so two students can use the computer simultaneously.) 
My classroom has three student computers and one of which I'm using as my teacher computer since we aren’t provided laptops. During reading or math centers I’ll have students buddy up and keeping the headphones on the computer allows the space to stay neat of cords and minimal jumbling. I also number these computers (you can see the little bee) so that during centers each student has a designated spot and they don't lose time fumbling around or trying to sit near a friend, etc.
I would love to eventually move away from desktops and have a class set, or center set, of iPads or other devices so to save room but also be a little more updated. There's so many awesome resources out there for iPads!

Book Displays

Something else new in my classroom this year is using a cookbook display to promote the seasonal books or books I’d like students to check out. This also works as a spot for featured teacher-texts that I use as read-alouds throughout the week. Students know how to handle the ‘teacher books’ and should stay in pristine condition for others to use. I don’t typically keep all of my mentor texts in the student library, but ones I want them to re-read or use for an activity are featured using these displays.

Such a great find at TJ Maxx!

Clip Chart Hack

If you’re anything like me then you'll love a good clip chart. Whether it’s for behavior or writers workshop I use clips for students to take ownership of their progress throughout the year. For example, when using my writers workshop clip chart (see photo) I use dixie cups that are hot glued to the backs of the posters and again hot glued to the wall to lift the poster off the wall so the clips can easily be moved from one poster to the next. I use the thick laminate for these posters so they’ll last all year long without fraying from the clips’ usage. Such a neat trick and has come in handy! Here are my dixie cups in action! 
Love how they bring my posters off the wall. You can pick up my Writing Process Poster set here or even pick up the newer version (added in 2016) here!

Pick up this newer version of my popular Writing Process Posters that can be used as simple displays or as a clip chart! See how I do it in my classroom up on the blog!

Magnetic Rod For Posters

Finding enough wall space for the many anchor charts us teacher accumulate over the years is tough work. Often times I feel like I’m searching for space to hang everything - especially if it’s worthy to keep up most of the year and with a smart board taking up what used to be a black board I’m left with having to get smart with my board space. One way I display, and keep organized, my anchor charts and other posters is by using a magnetic curtain rod! It fits perfectly on my board and by using clips or paper rings I am able to hang and flip as I need them.

It’s also easy to transport your anchor charts around the room too! I have often used it to work with my students on the rug using my easel then move it to the front of the class once students return to their seats! I also laminate my anchor charts so that they stay preserved for years to come and can easily be written on with dry-erase markers.

Useful Clip Hangers

For posters or other things that need to be interchanged throughout the year like student work, I opt for using these clips to hang onto them. Then, when it’s time to switch them out I can easily take them down without needing staples or worry about how much time it’ll take to do it all.

What nifty tricks do you use in the classroom?! Share in the comments!


  1. These are genius ideas! Thanks so much for linking up and sharing!

    Swimming into Second

  2. I just added a magnetic curtain rod to my shopping list! Mind. Blown. Thanks for the great ideas!

    1. No problem! It's something simple and you can maximize the space on your board. I also used it to display the poems we work on each week as well as other anchor charts. Such a handy thing :)

  3. Love the idea of hot gluing clothes pins to the wall. Thanks!

  4. I'm curious about the Dixie cups? Do you glue them to the back of your posters? How do you attach them to the wall?

    1. Yes, you hot glue them or use packaging tape to secure the cup to the back of the poster. Then, hot glue the bottom of the cup that's holding your poster and stick it straight to the wall. I used a picture above to kind of show how the Dixie Cup is attached. I hope that helps!

  5. Does the hot glue harm the wall when you try to remove them? I'm afraid it would pull off the paint. Great ideas! Thanks for sharing. :)

    1. Hi! Thanks for stopping by :)
      Each year I use hot glue and not once has it ever damaged the walls or took off any paint. My principal actually urged us to use hot glue instead of sticky-tak. I hope this little tip helps!


Thank you for sharing!