What I want to write about today is different classroom arrangements. I got rid of my desk last year. I was really worried I would miss it, but I really didn't. I never sat at my desk during class anyways, so I just used my kidney table as a "desk," which I only sit at in the morning during check-in and during small groups. I also brought in another kidney table for my co-teacher. She spent most of the afternoon reading block in my classroom, so she really needed a space of her own. I wish I had pictures, but essentially both kidney tables were in the back of the room, along with our library area. I would like to move things around this year, here are some thoughts:
General Classroom Layout:
I've always wanted my small group area in front of the Smart Board. It makes sense to be able to make charts, hop on the Internet, or display something necessary for a read aloud or lesson. My biggest concern with that, though, is that creating this space in front of the board takes away space for desks when I want students to learn from there and see the Smart Board. I also saw an arrangement where the teacher moved her small group table to the center of the room. I really liked that idea (again, to be able to utilize the Smart Board during small groups, and also it seems like it might be better to monitor behaviors during Daily 5 and math workshop.
I've always loved the library area in my classroom. I have three long bookshelves full of books and one tall bookcase I brought from home. I bought paper lanterns at Target this summer to hang in the library area for softer lighting. I like students to be able to sit in the library to read and relax. In the past, I've also used this space as a meeting area. My biggest problem with my library last year is that some of my students chose to sit there and goof around while I was with a small group and couldn't see them. My first thought is to not make my library so "closed off" but my gut tells me this could happen no matter where my library is in the room. I also need to think about if I want to maintain the library as my meeting area. If not, I can have it be a smaller area in the room.
I have three desktop computers provided by the district in my classroom. They have to be against the wall in my classroom because of wall outlets and Internet connections. I also have three Google Chromebook computers that I got through Donor's Choose last Christmas. The Chromebooks are more mobile, but I like them to be plugged in throughout the day when not in use. Last year, I had another table that formed "L" next to the desktop computers. I think I like the idea of all of the computers being in the same location, but they don't have to be. Hmm...now that's got me thinking!!
How are you arranging your classroom this year? Do you change your layout each year or essentially keep it the same? Anyone else remove their teacher desk from the room?
Well, off I go to look at more classroom layouts on the 'net!