We were not renovated like OTHER schools in the district. No. (We often joke that we are the 'red headed step-child' of the district....don't get offended, I'm a redhead too, so I can joke about those things...its the rules!)
Anyway, they(don't you just hate THEY sometimes, whoever 'they' are) decided in all their brillance they would not add on or demolish any of our exisitng footprint of the building, but use that same footprint to create a 'new' school that would be OH so much better than the last even though its really kinda the same. (Insert sarcasm here). Well, lets just say it turned out less than desirable in MANY aspects.
One of the things we do NOT like is they went to a 'pod' type of plan....meaning the grade levels are in 'pods' (can you say so isolated I never see another grade level all day?) and we also have NO doors. Yep.
Take a second.
Wrap your head around that.
And to add icing on the cake, we share a common entryway into our classrooms, with WIDE opening and our teaching points are BACK TO BACK. Yes....sound travels. Meaning, if my kids are bored with my lessons, they can listen to one of my teaching partner's lessons. (You'd think that'd cut down on me repeating myself, huh? HA!)
Another lovely side effect was they took up the bulk of our wall space with cabinets. Now THAT I am not complaining about. I love my cabinets. They are beautiful. They give me doors to shut all the clutter away. They are very useful. The problem being...I have VERY limited wall space to hang ANYTHING. I do have bulletin boards.
You've seen the pictures.....if not, scroll down to one of my previous posts.
I have 3- a small, a medium and a large one.
The large one is behind my row of computers. SERIOUSLY?
Like I'm going to use it for word wall (which is what they want us to use it for) and climb over the computers daily to add words? Not convenient!!
That one, I mostly use for student work.
Don't judge...I have a word wall...that will be in a later post!
Well, having limited wall space and limited bulletin boards REALLY makes one think about how they want to use them. They are precious!
I'm over it. (Well, not really)
SO, I started researching how I could have an interactive calendar. It's a GENIUS idea. It gives my kiddos something they desperately need. We do a LOT with our calendar.....money, weather, the date (of course), patterns, time, temperature, place value....and anything else I can think of.
Our software that comes with our "not as smart as your" boards, is funky. It works with NOTHING else. Its Q draw (which works with Ben Q pens and our projectors). However, I did find out that you could take pictures, put them in the background (kinda like you'd do in power point), and use the tools of the software to write over it, insert shapes, etc. AND it saves what you've done, and allows you to erase, add to, etc.
SO, this will work for my interactive calendar. To create the backgrounds, I used clipart and power point. I LOVE LOVE LOVE me some power point! Its so much more user friendly than Word!!! It lets me layer things! It lets me use cutesy fonts and doesn't bug me about borders.....love it!
SO, I created these backgrounds, am inserting them into our software as background and TA-DA!!! I have an interactive calendar. I made a template for each month of the year. I am inserting them here as jpegs so if you want them, you are welcomed to grab them. If you need them in another format, email me and I'd be glad to get them to you!!!
I'll be posting other aspects of my calendar later....money, time,etc. This is just the calendar where we insert a pattern and write the date in a complete sentence at the bottom. Enjoy!