Category Archives: Library Work Station

Classroom Library Makeover

My classroom library was looking a little boring these days.  It didn’t quite fit in with the rest of my classroom, so with a little help from Oriental Trading Company, I fixed it up!  IMG_9430

Read more here about how I quickly got it looking new again and for some tips to make your classroom library cozy too!


Top Teachers Kinderland Post

Hi All!

I just posted my first guest post on the TT Kinderland blog!  Click here to check it out and to score a freebie for your Big Book Work Station! 🙂
Kristen 🙂

Class books and photos

I’m on a mission to complete more class books this year so here are starters for the first two books we have completed so far.


Last week, we read Who stole the cookies from the cookie jar, so we created a class book to recreate that.  Here is the page that we used:



This week, we are reading Brown bear, brown bear what do you see and so today we created a class book for that:



You will only need to print the first page once (and insert your name).  Print as many of the 2nd page as you have students (minus 1).  Before you give each child their page, write the name of the previous student on the top two lines of their page, so that when you put the pages together it will read correctly.

Also, I print pictures of my students easily and without resizing them in iPhoto.  When you click print, select the “contact sheet” option (as shown below).  This will allow you to print all the pictures in a 2×3 size if you take them all in the same direction with your camera.  You can see the pictures I used below are both horizontal and vertical.  Usually, all of my pictures are horizontal.

I hope this helps some of you create quick and easy classbooks!  We are up to four already! 🙂

Kristen 🙂

Crazy week!

It’s been a crazy week!  I’m talking about my week that has now spanned from Tuesday to almost Tuesday.  Last Tuesday, I went to school not feeling so hot.  I went to talk to my principal and she said that I didn’t look so good and pretty much sent me home.  She made me promise that I would visit the doctor for some meds before getting on the plane to San Francisco!  That’s right San Francisco, where I was attending NSTA 2011.  The plane ride wasn’t so helpful for my cold…I used a box and a half of kleenex on the way to San Francisco.  We arrive around 9:30 pm their time and walked right past our hotel four times because it was being remodeled and we couldn’t find it.  By then it was 1:00 am midwest time and we were EXHAUSTED!!  Thursday, I was able to attend a full day of workshops and got some really great ideas!  I’ll be sharing them in the next few months as I use them in my classroom.  Thursday night, I got the thrill of a lifetime…we were invited to a VIP Reception through the Discovery Channel/Education people and got to meet….drumroll please….


Here’s proof:

I was so beside myself with excitement, that I eeked out a “HI!” and a “Thank You!” and that’s all I could come up with to say!  That’s my hubby behind me…I took him along because he has family in California and thought he might get to see them while we were there.

Friday, I got some more workshops in and then that darned earthquake happened in Japan, so we were on Tsunami Watch 2011.  I FREAKED!  I was there and didn’t know where higher ground might be, so I did the next best thing….started shopping for tickets to Vegas for the day–you know to get further inland.  After talking with my friends who were with us, I calmed down and we decided to stay put…good choice as nothing happened!

Friday afternoon, we toured the San Fran area by tour bus and then had dinner with the Science Companion President and some of her right and left hands.  Saturday morning, I presented along with my friends Amy and Steve and we spoke about incorporating children’s literature into science or the other way around, incorporating science into children’s literature.  I jumped on two planes after that to head home and was met with daylight savings time that put us not three hours back, but four!! Talk about jet lag!

I slept until noon on Sunday–I never do that and am slowly getting back into the normal routine!  Whatever that is!

Today (Monday), I had the opportunity to attend the ISRA (Indiana State Reading Association) Conference.  I got to meet a very special person (one who happens to read my blog…) maybe you know her??

Debbie Diller!! These have got to be my four most favorite books ever written!! I use them all the time.  Debbie was kind enough to come over and through conversation, we figured out that she knew me because of this blog!  Hi Debbie! 🙂

Her presentation was wonderful and I got lots of new ideas from the two sessions I was able to attend.

I ran right to the exhibit hall and purchased a copy of her new book Math Work Stations and am already half way through it! 🙂

So, it’s been the thrill of a lifetime for me to meet the MYTHBUSTERS and my idol Debbie Diller all in one week!  Be still my heart!  I don’t know how much more excitement I can take!

Tomorrow, it’s back to school for a few more weeks, then Spring Break! 🙂

I’m linking Debbie’s wordpress blog here and in the blogroll on the right, be sure to check it out and her new puppy Atlas too! 🙂

Kristen 🙂

P.S. I’ve got a new Donor’s grant posted…check it out if you’re able to help! 🙂 (I’m in Indiana)  It’s for an iPad for our classroom so we can do some wireless teaching and learning! 🙂

Library Work Station

Hi Everyone!

I know it seems as if I’ve fallen off the face of the earth, but I really haven’t!!!  I’m still here!  Things have been busy lately and updating my blog just kept getting pushed further and further down the list.  I’m going to post 5 entries today, the other 4 will be ahead of this one, but if you are subscribed to my blog you will get them in the right order.  If you haven’t subscribed, there is a box on the left hand side for you to do that…you don’t have to check here for updates…they will get e-mailed directly to you!

Here are some pictures from our Library Work Station.  It is a constantly evolving area.  Each time we learn about a new topic, I put books pertaining to that topic into the large front facing bookcase.  You can see our farm books in the front facing shelf in the pictures. The baskets on the tall brown book shelf stay the same and the old books from the front facing bookcase get moved to the top of another bookcase.  We’ve also just added a basket for Class Books. These are the books made by the children for the children.  So far, we have three books in it, “Where we live”, “Homes”, and “Mrs. Wishy-Washy”.  I just keep the labels the same on the books that are in the front facing bookcase.  They all have green dot stickers on them to help them get returned to their homes.  This system is working great!!  I find that very few books make it back to their correct baskets.

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