Thursday, January 12, 2012

Sunday, January 8, 2012

BUDDY bucks!

My dual partner and I have decided to start encouraging our dual buddies with BUDDY bucks. After being together since kindergarten, we have noticed that our students tend to get on each other's nerves and often have difficulty working together. We are hoping by handing out buddy bucks to partners who are working cooperatively, that this will encourage camaraderie between our dual buddies.

Just dual food for thought...

Friday, January 6, 2012

~* TIPS for an organized DUAL classroom *~

As a first year dual teacher, I have found that good organization in my classroom is essential to building a community of dual students who are collaborative and cooperative. Here are a few tips that have worked successfully in my room for the 2011-2012 school year.

~ Community Supplies: Gather all of the supplies (pencils, crayons, markers, glue, scissors etc) at the beginning of the year and develop some type of community buckets within table groups. This will help solve the problem of having 40 + students sharing only 20 desks. If students have special pencils or erasers that they would like to be the only one to use, you can have them put that in their travel bag/box (See next idea).

~ Travel Bag/Box: Get each student a magazine box or re-usuable bag to take back and forth between classes. This bag/box will keep any individual supplies, agenda/folder, completed work and take home work in it. You can find this type of box/bag as low as $1.00 and it is worth it to have a sturdy (yet smaller than a backpack) item for supplies that travel.
**Examples: Magazine boxes from IKEA, re-usuable grocery bags.

~ Desks: The first option is to have 2 students rotate using one desk while they are in your room for instruction. The second option is to turn your desks to where the slot is facing in/blocked. The third (and most ideal option in my opinion) is to have regular tables instead of desks.
** Most campuses have desks with slots; therefore, I chose to turn my desks around and not let the students use the slots for storage. Instead, I utilize some of the desks for storage of items that we do not use very often.

~ Shelves and Tubs: After reading about how I choose to set up the desks, I know that you are probably wondering where all of the student's "stuff" is going to go. I have 3 shelves dedicated to buckets that hold math and science journals, writing journals, and two types of folders. In addition, I have a shelf that holds textbooks stacked into two groups. In our program, we have a red and blue group. Everything is labeled with the color group and I also divide journals and folders into boy/girl so the students can access them quickly when needed. By utilizing shelves and not desks for storage, my students are able to access items quickly which reduces transition time.

Feel free to utilize these tips as needed and share any tips that you might have for organization in the dual classroom!