I've been back in my new classroom twice now, I went last Friday and again all day today. I'm most likely going to the school every day this week to ensure I'm well-prepared for the first day of school a week from tomorrow (oh my!). I feel pretty good with how far I've got with setting up my classroom as of today, though there is still SO much to do before I can really walk out of the room and feel confident that I can welcome in twenty students ready to learn in the space.
This year, along with moving up to teaching grade two instead of grade one, I've physically moved up to the second floor of our school. It's a lovely, bright classroom at the end of one of the hallways. The teacher who used to be in my room retired last year, and she did a great job cleaning out the classroom while also leaving me well-stocked with supplies and extra books and such, lots of great stuff to start the school year with. A much nicer situation than last year, when I walked into a completely EMPTY classroom, that didn't even have a single pencil on hand let alone any other necessary supplies. Or shelving, or books, or well - anything at all! This year it's much less stressful as far as knowing my classroom is well stocked.
I think I've figured out the flow and placement of furniture fairly well at this point, though who knows if I'll change it around again before next Tuesday. I try to give my kids various areas in the classroom to choose to work or read in, but its challenging to create those spaces when you only have so much furniture and shelving to work with. I'm doing my best, though, and the results have been pleasing so far.
Tomorrow I'll be having a meeting with my grade team to discuss routines and plans for the first couple of weeks of school, I'm excited now to get planning and prepare lessons and activities to teach. I'm also VERY excited for that moment on the first day of school when a few of my students from last year find out I'll be their teacher again. It's going to be a pleasant surprise for them (based on how great my relationship was with their particular parents, and them as individuals), and I think that moment is going to be memorable!
I'm so excited for the school year to begin, it feels awesome to be back in the classroom again!