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Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Teaching with Intention Book Study: Chapter 1 {Your Ideal Classroom}

I am so excited to be opening up Mr. Greg's (from Kindergarten Smorgasboard) book study on "Teaching with Intention" by Debbie Miller. I am hosting this chapter with my bloggy friends Keri from Enchanted Kinder Garden and Jessica from Mrs. Plemon's Kindergarten.  Make sure you hop on over there when you are done here to see their take on the chapter!  
My ideal classroom is one where students feel at home when they come in each morning.  It's comfy, friendly, and it is generally a place where a kid wants to come each day!  There is room for the whole class to gather together as a group, areas where students can work with a partner away from others, areas for small groups, and an area where I can pull students to work 1-1 or in small groups.  

Supplies are available to students when they need them and they are trusted enough to gather those supplies on their own.  They don't feel that they have to ask for supplies, but that those supplies are available to them at all times.

My classroom library would be organized by author, series, non-fiction & fiction.  Students would know where to find the books they need and also how to take care of the library.
  My ideal classroom would operate a lot like the one Debbie Miller describes.  I would love to have a class full of independent learners and thinkers.  Students who are comfortable enough in their classroom that they take on responsibilities for their own learning.  My students would be working in pairs and in small groups, engaged in what they are learning while I am working with small groups or doing interventions 1-1 or in small groups with other students.
Some of the aspects of my ideal classroom are already in place.  I have worked to make different spots in the room where students can work with partners or in small groups.  I have area rugs and small rugs that make comfy reading and working spots.  I have a teacher table where I pull small groups and can work 1-1 with students.  I have supplies ready for kiddos to grab when they need them and I feel that the kiddos know where other materials and supplies are and they are comfortable getting them out.
I have tons of books in my classroom library but they aren't organized in the most convenient way.  I need to find a way to organize them that is easy for the kids to understand and also take some responsibility for.   I have some supplies ready for my students to use but I need to do a better job at the beginning of the year of emphasizing how to not waste the supplies.  Organization is always a top priority at the beginning of the year but those times during the year when things get crazy (Christmas, breaks, and the end of the year) things can get a little (okay... a lot!) unorganized and start to pile up.
I can't wait to work on fine tuning my ideal classroom as I read this book this summer!  It's a great time to take on those tasks that you don't have time to tackle during the school year.  This book has already inspired me to look forward to next year and working towards my ideal classroom!
Want to join in on the fun?  Read more about chapter one from these fabulous bloggers and link up your own post here!  Not a blogger?  Leave your thoughts, ideas, and questions in the comments below!  I'd love to hear from you.  And don't forget to check back next week for Chapter 2!


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