August 6, 2013

Dollar Classroom Decorations (!)

With this may think I am throwing a party, right??? Although I do love getting together with friends and family, sadly I am not hosting a soiree.  However--now would be perfect time for one as summer is coming to an end and the new school year is right around the corner!  

So what exactly is the use of these party tablecloths??  Well these colorful (okay two are colorful and two are black) party tablecloths are helping me decorate my classroom.  A while back I saw a pin on pinterest that piqued my attention as the pinner suggested using CHEAP plastic tablecloths as the backgrounds to bulletin boards.  Did you notice my CHEAP in all capital letters?  Teachers need cheap!!  

Anyway.....if you use the plastic tablecloths the color never fades and you don't have to fight with the butcher paper.  I mean--who is even good at tearing butcher paper?  My tears are never frustrating!  

I went to the dollar store and spent a whopping $4.00 for 4 tablecloths.  I picked neutral colors so my bulletin board edges would match.  I went up to my classroom, unfolded the cloths and stapled them up!  I only have two square bulletin boards in my room, so I ended up only needing 1 tablecloth.  Below is my finished product---pretty good for a buck, I think!

Along with spending time on getting my classroom ready, I have been trying to enjoy my last few days of summer.  I have wanted to enjoy them basking in the sun--but unfortunately it has rained for almost 2 weeks straight.  All this rain really puts a damper on things (haha no pun intended!) I also am trying to finish as many TPT products as a I can.

My latest creation was inspired by one of my fellow 6th grade teachers.  She was looking for a way to keep track of when, how and where she taught the common core standards.  She was interested in a checklist...but also a way to reflect and write notes.  When it came down to the nitty gritty, she just wanted to be confident that by the end of the year she had all of the 6th grade ELA CCSS thoroughly covered.  I really made this for her...but then thought why not offer it to others??  Like my CC prefix suffix packets...I plan on doing this for all the other grade levels. 

If you are a 6th grade teacher--this pack has it all! Included in the pack are:

Mastery Checklists
  • Keep track of each students’ mastery  progress for every  Common Core ELA skill.  CC standards are broken into sections (Literature, Informational, Writing, and Speaking & listening.)  for easy organization.
  • This convenient checklist allows you to assess students as often as you like
  • After assessing students informally or formally—you can simply note the date in the checklist, use a color code system or notate with check marks.
  • The checklist is perfect to share with parents during Parent Teacher Conferences or building principals during evaluations.
  • This is a great way to keep track of students  progress throughout the year!

Planning Pages
  • CC standards are broken into sections (Literature, Informational, Writing, and Speaking & listening.)  for easy organization.
  • The planning pages list each standard  with an area to record dates when the standard was taught,  what resources were used and what unit or lesson the standard was taught in.
  • Planning pages are  perfect for reflection at PLC or grade level meetings.
  • Planning pages are ideal for future planning (at the end of the school year--you have an entire year planned of when, where and what resources you used to teach mastery of CCSS)
  • These organization pages are ideal for reflecting, and keeping you on track for teaching all CCSS!!
  • The planning pages are wonderful to share with principals during evaluations.

Mini CCSS Flip books

  • Are looking at the CCSS overwhelming?? The Mini CCSS flipbook  is simply a concise “teacher friendly” version of the CCSS.
  • All ELA CCSS are included--but the standards are condensed down to manageable language that teachers can understand!!
  • Flipbooks are prefect to slip in your backpack, purse or teacher tote to take home or to meetings.
  • You can even laminate flipbooks and share with parents or students!!
  • Perfect for teachers on the go!
What do you guys think?  



  1. Thanks for the great BB idea! Your pack looks great! I like the checklist idea.


    Teaching Little Miracles

  2. The Common Core checklist is awesome. Looking forward to seeing the eighth grade standards!
    Follow Dava Smith English Teacher on BlogLovin’

  3. Ugh, I used black trash bags that I slit down the seams to cover my bulletin board. I feel so lame now compared to your Dollar Store find! Now I know where to go if they don't hold up.