Sunday, July 5, 2015

Sped Summer Bloghop {Week 2: Classroom Setup}

 It's time for week 2 of our summer sped blog hop! Thanks to all that stopped by last week for scheduling tips! If you missed it, it's just below this post. This week it's all about classroom set-up. 

Since it's summer and my room is most likely in shambles at this point by the custodial crew, the photos I'm showing you are from the beginning of the year last year. Most everything is the same, but alot of what is on my walls has changed! 

This is the view from my back door and my desk.

This is where my students sit for our whole group instruction and morning meeting, which I hold in the afternoon. To the left corner where you see the colorful chairs is my reading area. These chairs were so thrashed at the end of the year, I trashed them and next year will be using this cabana I just purchased to make a little reading nook area. 
I plan to add a sign to the front, some throw pillows, and book baskets. 
This is a closer look at my morning meeting area. Part of morning meeting is done here, and part is done on my smartboard with a program I made. 

This is a view from the other side of my room. Small group teacher table is at the back, and on the left are my divided centers...math center and word work center. 

Here is a closer look at my small group teacher table.
I have eight groups that come to me at this table every day....four for math and four for reading. The pink bins to the right are labeled and color coded for each group. Yes, I was short one bin, but have four there now. Reading is kept in the bin, math is kept under their bin.When they come to my table they grab their materials from their bin before sitting at my table.

This is my computer and iPad center. I have six student computers and three are touch screens for my students that have difficulties maneuvering a mouse. 
I have 7 ipads and this is how I store them.
This method has aided in keeping them from getting stacked and from headphones getting entwined. 

Sorry I don't have more photos of my math and word work centers, but you can read all about how I set up and run my centers here and how I schedule my centers here. I partition my centers with book shelves to separate them. I prefer this over cabinets because while I want privacy in each center, I also want to be able to see across my classroom at all times. For this reason, I try not to obstruct my view of being able to see every area. I store all of my centers like of my best ideas ever! I'm in LOVE with this storage system. 
You can read more about it here.

This is a closer look at my reading area. On the end of the bookcase there to the right is my whole group token system with each student's picture. 

That word wall you see didn't work so it has now been replaced with this...and I just love it!!! One of my best ideas ever!

Every day during morning meeting, my students have to state their goals. 

Here is a closer look!
You can read more about my behavioral goal wall here, and even snag the templates for free!

This is my treasure tree...which I LOVE and have used for the last 4 years! I love it because I don't have students spending minutes rummaging through a treasure box and breaking items in the process. I also love it because it's an incentive for my students. When they see something they want really badly on that tree, it entices them to work for it.

This is my behavior clip chart. It coincides with the same faces that are on their daily take home behavior reports. Students start on good each day.

This picture is intended not to show you our profiles, but to give you a glimpse of the incentive charts hanging to the right...since I don't have a pic of them. They coincide with my clip chart and daily behavior take home reports. Students get a sticker at the end of each day that corresponds with where they ended on the chart that day. Sad=red sticker, warning=yellow sticker, good=green sticker, and super=purple sticker. At the end of the week, on Friday, if they have no red or yellow stickers, they get to pick something off of the treasure tree! 

This is how I manage jobs and birthdays! I rotate the jobs every Monday. 

This is where my students hang their backpacks each morning when they arrive. I am thinking of doing away with this next year though for more wall space and having them hang their backpacks on their chairs. 
To the left on the brown cabinet, their daily behavior report cards that go home hang here. Don't have a pic of that. One of my aides handles this for me. I like this and my students do too as they can look at their charts throughout the day to see what they ended up with for morning and afternoon. I get a kick out of seeing them inconspicuously glancing at it. They take it serious and it has been a powerful tool! 
This is a very old picture and looks nothing like this now, but I wanted to show you the wire stand to the right there. It has three trays. This is by the door and where students place their agenda, homework, and notes upon their arrival and before hanging their backpacks.

This is our class rules and little fish tank that I do every year. I love using photos for my rules because it provides a visual for my students and gives the rule more meaning and understanding. 

I love having fish or some sort of class pet every year to teach students how to care for a pet and it creates another class keeper! It's one of the more favorite jobs in my class!

My daily schedule and center rotations chart hang by my door. I have four of these nice brown cabinets in my room and the contents of each cabinet is organized like this....(1)Math/Science, (2)ELA, (3)Assistive Technology (this one remains locked), (4) Craft/office supplies and misc. Cabinets are off limits to my students!!

Some other things I love about my setup are my scrap buckets.
These set on each table and prevent not only students from going to the trashcan constantly, but also decreased the amount of scraps all over the tables and floor. 

These were also one of the best things I ever did when I set up my class this last year.
Glue sponges! If you haven't jumped on the glue sponges it!!! It works like a charm! :) I have two to each table and the students share!

I also love this! I used to have two cups that I transferred a student's name to after they'd been chosen. Now I just simply flip their stick and use one cup. 

I also have a designated "cool down" area, which I highly recommend! Unfortunately, I don't have a picture of that area. I've tried to include all of the pictures I could find considering it's summer break!! I hope this will give you some great ideas and inspiration for your classroom set up next year! Feel free to ask any questions if you're looking for more clarity on something! 

I have another giveaway for you this week! So enter and then head over to "My Special Learners" by clicking her button below to see how she sets up her classroom! 


  1. Love your centers storage!!!!!

  2. I really like the scrap bucket idea and will have to give the glue sponges a try. Thanks for the student goal template!

  3. I love the idea of a goals wall! What an awesome idea!

  4. Your treasure tree is very unique! Great idea for motivating students with visual intensives. I also like your colorful word wall. I like the way the different color papers keep each of the letters separate.

    The Organized Plan Book

  5. Your room looks great and so organized. I really like the way you store your iPads. I hate when my iPads get stacked, but now I have a new idea! Thanks!
    Mrs. H's Resource Room

  6. I LOVE the painted sticks with their names. Totally doing that this summer. I also love your treasure tree...and that you have their goals posted on the walls!! I am stealing all three of these ideas!

    The Eager Teacher

  7. Such great pictures, Tracy! I love the organizational strategies with the scrap buckets and the glue sponges!
    Is that a copy machine in your classroom? That must be fun to organize around. LOL
    Autism Classroom News

  8. Definitely doing glue sponges and a scrap bucket next year!

    Years That Ask Questions

  9. I am absolutely in awe. I taught special needs students for 28 years, but only 8 of those were self-contained. The others were all resource. But, I never ever had a room that was as organized as yours. You have so much storage, so many bulletin boards and decorations. I love the way you have all of your tables organized. I am retired now and run a small tutoring business. I wish I could get any of my rooms to look this amazing. Thanks for sharing.


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