Do you ever have one of those days teaching when your class just rocks?  Today was that day for us.  Everything went great.  We were on top of our game.  My charge to my class every day is to be your best.  And today they met that challenge.  We rocked centers after being introduced to the center wheel in reading and math….we rocked our first day of using our interactive math notebook…we rocked behavior and apples and people, we just rocked!

So to celebrate, it’s time for our first Kindergarten Smorgasboard Classroom Video of the 2014-2015 school year!

I get asked often about introducing new centers so I figured why not do a video of how I introduce new centers.  
My secret:  small groups!  I introduce the activity in small groups and then it becomes a center.   This allows me to still differentiate learning while introducing centers to the students quickly and efficiently.  
Another secret:  since I create a lot of our own centers, they follow a pretty similar pattern so once we’ve been introduced to numerous centers, we are very independent with new centers because we’ve seen the game/activity before.  This allows independence, success and less stress for me!  My system also allows students to rely on each other for help and not always relying on me.  
In this video you see me working with two groups where I’m introducing two different centers that follow the same procedures.  Each center is a spin and color/graph center but differentiated for the needs of the group.  Group 1 is working on letters so they are spinning and coloring letters.  Group 2 is working on beginning sounds so they spinning and identifying beginning sounds!  
The beauty of this:  they can show others how to do the centers if they’re are questions!  And now they can use all of our What Does The Fox Say centers for the year!  
You can watch the video here or you can check it out on my YouTube channel!
The center i’m introducing is from my newest fox creation!

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August 1st has arrived.  I know I’ve been teasing you for 2 weeks…and judging my Facebook and Instagram feeds…ya’ll wanna see something.  Well, I am SUPER Excited to show off my new rainbow mustache classroom!!!!!!!!!!!
I am LOVING my room this year.  Colors EVERYWHERE!  Mustaches EVERYWHERE.  AND TONS OF SPACE!
You’ve heard me teasing an experiment that I am embarking on this year.  Here it is:  (Ya’ll might want to sit down for this…which is ironic….)
NO TABLES!  NO DESKS!  NO CHAIRS!  NO ASSIGNED SEATS!  People, we’re going a little montessori up on here!  I was inspired by my dear friend Erin at Kleinspiration.  If you do some research, this type of no seating arrangement is great for creativity (hello, have you met me, I am all about creativity) and collaboration!  
TRUTH!  OK…the no table thing is not totally true.  I have 2 round tables and my small group table.   In all honesty, there are enough seats at a table for everyone (FI WE NEED THEM!).  Here’s the plan:
CHOICE!  CHOICE!  CHOICE.  I get asked all the time about keeping students engaged.  Well here are two tricks that work wonders:  NOVELTY AND CHOICE!  So why not give them novelty and choice in where they sit and work???  
That’s right.  They can sit on the floor.  They can sit at a table.  They can stand.  They can choose a rug and sit on it.  The choice is theirs.  The novelty is that each time they work they sit somewhere different.  When we have those times where everyone needs to be working in their own space, I bought 15 bath mats so each student can have a mat to use for their own space!  
People, I am super excited about this.  I am a little nervous.  But here’s my thing:  I love being a little innovative and trying new things.  It’s all about procedures, procedures, procedures and expectations.  WE CAN DO THIS!  
(Plan B:  I have tables in storage should my experiment blow up in my face!)  
I will be blogging about this and sharing how it goes over the next few weeks!  Wanna take bets?!  Success??  Epic fail???
So, are ya ready to see the classroom??

This is what it might look like when the ‘staches have their rugs out working around the room!

How much do you love that lamp?!

This is what it looks like if we are using the rugs for whole group work.  Can I just say I love how they look when they’re all together!!!

I love my mustace clipboard from CJayne Teach!  I love my milk crate pointer storage!  
You can see the famous center wheel!  It’s in a new, more ‘stache friendly location this year. ‘Stache friendly=less Mr. Greg stress!  
Our mini pocket charts are stored in this metal planter I found at the Dollar Tree!
Upper left corner:  CLEAR POCKET CHART!  TRUE STORY!  I’ll give ya a moment…
That board is for anchor charts and activities using pocket charts.  The chart is on a curtain rod that’s held up by command hooks.  The chart is attached to the rod using curtain hooks.  If I need to display anchor charts, I just unclip the chart and put up an anchor chart!
Red pocket chart:  our student friendly I CAN Statement CANS!  I know right… I can  on CANS!
Colors and shapes!  Folders!  Months and days!

Classroom library!  Thanks to Creative Teaching Press for the rainbow chevrons and mustache photo booth kid!  I love the library!  It’s fun.  It’s inviting.  It’s cozy.  It’s colorful.  It has giant fish hats to wear while reading.  What ‘stache wouldn’t want to read in the plastic pool with a giant fish hat on their head?!
Community supplies.  We use community supplies to foster a sense of sharing and to reinforce the idea that this is OUR CLASSROOM.  This is not Mr. Greg’s classroom.  This is our classroom.  These are our things.  This sense of ownership really helps the ‘staches respect our materials and property!

Rainbow Mustache Land needs a rainbow entrance!  Anyone see the mistake?!  I will write each ‘staches name on a mustache next week!
The rainbow curtain is PLASTIC and was one of our finds on our last minute IKEA trip.  It makes a perfect entrance to our land of ‘staches and color.  
And everyone needs a TBFF posing in their doorway.  I expect this everyday TBFF!
Small group area.  Mr. Greg’s name is on the wall.  In case I forget who I am.  Which happens.
Mustache drawers for weekly work.  Laminated circles for small group work.  Thanks CTP!  

People.  This is one of those finds that well, just defies all words.
People.  IT IS A GIANT ZIPPER RUG.  GIANT ZIPPER.  The giant zipper rug leads into our bathroom.  I KNOW RIGHT!  Zipper…bathroom.   Too much.
Here’s the best part of the giant zipper rug.  IKEA.  $5.  FIVE DOLLARS.  So I had to buy 6.  I have two in my room AND I gifted each of my teammates with a zipper rug.
I was like Oprah giving our zipper rugs!  YOU GET A ZIPPER RUG!  YOU GET A ZIPPER RUG!  EVERYBODY GETS A ZIPPER RUG!

Another Ikea find.  These baskets are PERFECT for folders and paper!  This one is hanging by our mailboxes.  I plan to use it contain all of those signed notes and papers that get pulled out of folders and backpacks.  Maybe this year I won’t lose so many important papers.  ALLEGEDLY.  I’m not saying I lost papers.   ALLEGEDLY.  I’m just saying this will help!

I made rainbow clipboards (if we’re gonna be working on the floor, we need clipboards to match our classroom….just sayin!) and use a $3 laundry basket to store them.  
Our rainbow word wall.  I am super excited to use our new RAINBOW MUSTACHE SENTENCE STRIP sight word cards on our wall!  It’s a magnetic whiteboard so we can just use magnets to display our words.

Our classroom!
And now a guided tour of the classroom.  

That’s it.  Our 2014-2105 rainbow mustache classroom and no tables/assigned seats/sit anywhere experiment! 
Now…did you hear???  It’s a Back To School Sale!  Who doesn’t love a sale?!
Click the picture to visit my store!
It’s time for the TPT Back To School Sale!  People, I am so excited.  My cart is already FULL!  
I have been having a blast this summer working on new creations for the classroom.  I’ve been getting them uploaded to my store.  Here are some of the newest ones!  I’ll be adding more all weekend long!  Check em out.  Fill your carts.  And put in all of your feedback to get your credits!
LET’S SHOP!

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  • Reply Lee Ann Rasey August 26, 2014 at 12:17 am

    Your students did a good job with the games! I'm impressed with how well they did so early in the year. What are the other students doing when you haven't yet shown them their centers/activities/games?

  • Reply Kristine August 26, 2014 at 1:17 am

    Love it! That Romey is a cutie!

  • Reply t. hall August 26, 2014 at 1:31 am

    Thanks! As I was watching my husband asked, “is that your mustache guy?” Also, I would love to know the answer to Lee Ann's question 🙂

  • Reply Maureen Antoski August 26, 2014 at 5:28 pm

    That was great!

  • Reply Kristin August 30, 2014 at 6:30 pm

    Same here as Lee Ann's question! Do you have a post on how you start the first day? Do you always start by introducing the new center to only 2 students at a time? How many students do you have this year? Thank you

  • Reply Kristin August 30, 2014 at 6:59 pm

    Following

  • Reply Greg Smedley September 2, 2014 at 9:47 pm

    The other students are working in centers. At the beginning of the year they have centers that they can do independently such as puzzles, tracing, etc. This allows me to see my groups and intro new centers! I have 12 students so my groups are 3 students. This video shows 2 students because the group had 1 student absent!

  • Reply Anne Marie Lanning May 19, 2017 at 1:39 am

    I LOVE SPRAY PAINTING THE CLIPBOARDS! Question- Did I imagine that you added their names to each clipboard this year? If that really did happen can you tell me where to find it. THANK YOU!!!

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