Sunday, September 6, 2015

Why my perfect set-up wasn't perfect...

So many teachers dedicated their summer time to preparing for the new year to come.  We have the perfect plan and diligently work on making it happen.  But what happens when that perfect plan isn't perfect when the students arrive?  One thing teachers have to fall back on is flexibility.

I am in a new classroom, at a new school and in a new district.  I set up the room with a lot of thought but I couldn't see how the students would use it.  18 bodies definitely change my plan!
This is a panoramic view of my new room.  I loved how the tables were in a straight row.  It was very visually pleasing and tidy...but it didn't work.  I have quite a few students that want to stand with their chair pushed out, or kind of lean on it.  It made it very hard to get around the room.  So we had to fix it.  It's not as visually pleasing but it does function MUCH better. 

Here is the change.  It was one of those changes that had a domino effect.  Other things had to find a new home.  The double sided shelf that holds the students book bins moved over by the mailboxes.  The double sided front loading book shelf had to move over by the library.  Small student chairs and crates were moved.

It wasn't how I wanted it but that's not what's important.  The students are the central reason to make any decisions in the classroom.  Yes, I like it to be pretty.  Yes, I like it to be visually pleasing. But more than anything I want the students to feel comfortable and happy in the space.  So flexibility and letting go of my wishes had to happen.  In the age of Pinterest and blogs, I know so many of us feel the pressure to have the cutest classroom  but make sure it works for your students.

1 comment:

  1. I totally agree with you. I have 26 2nd graders and I feel like there are bodies or obstacles everywhere despite my goal of designing a clutter free room. Now I feel like there aren't any good places for my students to work together except for the floor or their desks. Ugh!