Sunday, July 09, 2006

Thinking about Moving Rooms

There’s a chance next year that my school might need a 1st/2nd combination. I’m willing to teach it; after five years in 1st grade I’m ready for a change. On top of that they try to load the combo classes up with good kids who follow directions and are already doing well academically, which would make for a very nice class to teach.

The trick is that if I teach the combo I might need to change my classroom. It’s not far, just down the hallway, but as I sit here in the room and look at all the materials I’ve accumulated in only five years it really makes me pause.

How did I get so many books?

Why did I buy and record all those books on tape? I’ve never really used them all that well anyway.

Yes, I can see a situation where I might use that large, bulky manipulative to try and show one of the kids a different way to think about addition, but does using it once a year really justify the amount of space that it takes up in my closet?

The real bummer of it is that I work in a pretty new school (only three years old) and every room has a ton of storage space. They gave us cupboards and cabinets, and a really nice set of moveable drawers that are perfect for storing posters and other big materials. I’ve filled all the space in my room. I’ve got boxes in two other empty rooms, plus the storage room, filled to the brim with materials.

I have this fantasy sometimes that I’ll take out all the materials I have when I retire and have a giant garage sale that helps to pay my way to spending my twilight years by the side of a lake up in Republic. Why anyone would want to pay me for a 30 year old copy of Daily Oral Language I don’t know, but it’s my fantasy and I’m going to keep it, thank you very much.

The room that I’m thinking about moving to would be perfect for a couple of reasons. For a combo class it’s ideal for small groups and being able to set up dual instruction, and for a packrat is got more shelf space than any other room in the building.

It’s nice, too, that it’s my choice. Every time I think about it Mike In Texas’ posts about changing rooms pop into the back of my mind; having flexibility and not being forced is key.

I’ll know more after we do registration in August. If they need the combo I’ll go for it; if they don’t, I’ll stay put, teach the curriculum I already know, and spend more time with the Little (s)Thinker.


Blogger hedgetoad said...

I know that moving seems daunting, but think about all the wasted space now being used as storage you'll gain (unless the new room is significantly smaller) and all of the old things that you'll rediscover!

I did it last year - although I didn't have 5 years worth of stuff, I did have my stuff plus everything I inherited from the previous teacher! She never even fully cleaned out her desk and I never had time to do it either. It was good to purge.

5:10 PM  
Blogger Spangles said...

Ah, moving classrooms. I don't mind doing it, mostly because it gives me the chance to go through my things. I find a lot that I'm glad to pull out and use again. And I find a lot that I'm ready to toss. I moved last year and was glad to organize myself and rethink how I use my space. I also spent a whole day before preplanning to do it, which is a sacrifice that I wouldn't be in a hurry to make this year. It's nice that there's a perk with the new room -- more space and more storage.

7:50 PM  
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5:05 AM  

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