Wednesday, May 30, 2012

The End is Near

I came across a couple blog posts this week that I just had to share. As the year comes to an end, we are busy wrapping up projects, packing up classrooms, and maybe even thinking about next year. Hopefully the advice I found will help you as you close the book of another school year!

Scholastic had an article entitled "Ten Things to Think About as You Pack Up Your Classroom". Here are some of the highlights:

1. Summer Homework: Try to only take home ONE basket of work to do over the summer, such as professional development books you'd like to read.
2. Start Early: Maybe you already have! Is there anything you can pack away now that you know you won't use again this school year?
3. Take Pictures: So that you can refer back to them as you arrange furniture, bulletin boards, etc.
4. Where Did You Put the Essentials?: Pack a box of items that you know you will need right away: Scissors, glue, tape, a stapler, and anything else you'll need to start setting up your classroom. Make sure it then goes in a safe place!
5. Classroom Inventory: As you pack, make a list of things you know you will need to get for next year. Then you can start the new year ready to go, without having to make several trips to Target or the teacher store.
6. Clean as You Go: As you pack away items, give them a wipe down to have them clean and ready to go for next year.
7. Level Your Books: Before packing away your classroom library, take a little bit of time to organize them. You'll be happy you did in August!
8. Use Giant Ziploc Bags: It makes things easy to see and store.
9. Organize the Cabinets: Organize and label your cabinets and storage shelves to make it easier when it comes to setting up your classroom. 
10. Purge: My favorite thing to do! Get rid of things you haven't used. The more you get rid of, the less you have to pack!

All packed up? Good, now you can do a little bit of reflecting :) In a post on Edutopia called Year-End Tech Reflections, Nick Provenzano encourages you to reflect on things you did this year and evaluate how they went. Here are some questions to ask yourself:

1) What tools did you use?
2) How did you use these tools?
3) Was the tool effective in what you wanted to accomplish?
4) What tools could be removed or replaced?
5) What are your goals for next year?

Check out his post for more!

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