Thursday, June 21, 2012

Center Series from Ms. Patterson: Pocket Full of Kinders

It's me again
Ms. Patterson from Pocket Full of Kinders
I am so happy to be joining you again
Okay let me first apologize for missing the centers post last week
I had a family emergency that came up that caused me to have to go out of town unexpectedly
Everything is okay now
Now that we have gotten all the logistics out of the way we can get down to business

I must warn you this post is all over the place!

Proceed with extreme caution
Today we are going to talk a little about organizing centers.
Again I am no expert but I would like to share what works for me
The first thing I do when I plan for stations is to write down all my ideas and thoughts so that I can have them to refer to
I have journals that I use to write down all my ideas as I get them.
The yellow folder is for math centers and the green one is for reading centers
I like being able to take the journals wherever I go and I can quickly jot down ideas as they come
The black and white journal is one that I leave at home and the colored ones stay at school

*sorry about the pic being sideways*
IF you could just turn your head to the left for a second you will see that I organize my book by each week.
Under each week I have the Stations/Centers that I will be using
I write a quick description of the activity that I want to have in that station that week and even draw a pic so that my brain will remember what exactly I was thinking about
My brain is funny like that
I never remembers what I tell it!

My reading center idea book
I use sticky notes a lot to go back in fill in gaps in my thinking

I like having the journals because they allow me to organize my thoughts and I can refer back to them often.
After I have written down all of my centers I begin to gather materials that I will need to implement all of my stations.
This is how I store my centers 
This picture is from Growing Kinders but I also use the plastic storage contains, mine are a little larger than these, to store my centers
These storage buckets are for ME
Me, Me, Me
the students do not use these buckets
This is how I organize my center material so that when I get ready to set up a center all I have to do is go and pull the activity
Inside each of my labeled tubs are activities to go along with a specific topic or theme
For example I have an ABC tub and inside the tub are  folders for each letter of the alphabet and games for each of those letters. So if I am doing a ABC station on the letter A all I have to do is pull the letter A folder and put it in the students center bucket with any manipulatives that they might need
Another way that I store material is in those file box things
Inside these boxes are all my file folder games as well as my envelope centers and ziploc bag centers
For most of my centers that I make I cut them and store them in a ziploc bag or folder
The boxes have larger folders in them that I use to sort by themes
Inside each larger folder are smaller folders that each contains games related to a theme

Here is a better look at the folders that are inside the box
This is a folder inside the reading box. This is a game for word families I think so it is in a larger folder labeled word families with other games that cover the same skill

Inside the folder all some of the games that cover word families as well as the pieces that go along with that game

Another example of what is inside the box
This would be in the alphabet folder

This would be in the math bucket in the folder labeled numbers

This would be in the math box in a folder labeled addition
Another storage option is
Pencil pouches!
These are also stored in the box
Now when I get ready to set up my stations all of my material is in a central location and all I have to do is pull the material to put in the students center bucket
No more running around like a chicken with its head cut off
Thanks for listening to or rather reading my ramblings
Peep out Peeps!

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  1. Found your blog on Pinterest. I'm your newest followers.
    First Grade Shenanigans

  2. These are some great ideas.You are super organized!

  3. Love your ideas! I really need to get my file folder games and other center materials more organized. By the end of the year they are all over the place.


  4. Shuna, One question! When do you teach procedures or how to complete the activities in each of these centers?


  5. I don't think I will ever be this organized but I am going to certainly try for that this year. You have definitely inspired me to try harder to organize ahead of time.



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