Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Managing First Day Supplies

Mrs. Kincaid's First Grade is having a linky party on organizing those beginning of the year supplies! Click on the tag to check out the links!

I have dealt with supplies in two ways. Not sure I have found the best way yet, but here is how I have done it in the past.

We have a Meet the Teacher Day during our Superintendent's Conference Days before school starts. This has been nice because it is scheduled right into our day, or has been for two years now. We used to schedule it on our own and finding a date and time could be tough.

Students receive a supply list with their placement letter in July. The supply list is also posted on the district website and I post it on my website. To be honest, I have asked for a bit more this year. Everyone is taking pretty big budget cuts and I can't justify the shear amount of money that I spend on classroom supplies, so I asked for a few more things. I also tend to rotate items on my list. I have TONS of hand sanitizer, but have run really low on plastic bags, so I switched them out on the list.

The first way I dealt with supplies was having the students sort them on the Meet the Teacher Day. This worked well for me, as I set it up as a scavenger hunt and the kids toured the room while the sorted. I had part of the hunt where they put certain things in their toolbox and the rest in crates around the room. It effectively sorted all of the supplies, but I think it was more than the parents bargained for! They weren't expecting to have work to do and I think it was a bit overwhelming to them. Funny how tough following directions can be, even when you're an adult!

The second way I have dealt with supplies is by placing large paper grocery bags in student coat cubbies for all of the supplies. In my room, we have individual sections for each student to hang their items. (Actually, now that I think about it, that was my old room. My new room has a bit of a storage crunch for student stuff and I am working on dealing with that this summer.) On the first day, I used this as a sorting activity. It was a great idea in theory, but the management of it was hard. The kids had to either sit and wait or work together cooperatively and we had not created routines yet. It was definitely easier for the parents, but rough on the teacher!

This year, due to storage issues and reflecting on what worked best, I think I will return to the students sorting with their parents. I think it was a good way to communicate how important the home-school connection is and provides a nice sample of how the classroom works.

I can't wait to see how everyone else does this!

1 comment:

  1. I like the concept of involving parents to show how things are done. I think it also shows parents the level of responsibility we expect from the students. Good suggestions! Thanks for linking up!

    ✰ Mrs. Kincaid
    Mrs. Kincaid’s First Grade