Open House 2011

Have I mentioned before how much I love my school??  Because I really, really do!!!  I feel so blessed to be part of such an amazing family and teach in such a fun environment!!  I especially love the way our campus transforms this time of year!  Even though the weeks prior to Open House can be a little busy, crazy, & chaotic, it’s always worth it in the end.  I LOVE how proud the kids are to show their parents all of their work.  Brag day is the best!!  Here’s a little peek into Open House 2011 in my neck of the woods :)

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We’ve been learning lots about America & Texas the last few weeks so I tried my best to fill every nook and cranny with our learning!! 

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Since we traveled through America…and Texas…we made little backpacks for the kids to gather and pack up all of their work {aka: souvenirs} along the way.

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I can take ZERO credit for this darling idea.  The girls on my team have been making these for a few years and they are DARLING!

We used ribbon for the straps…just stapled ‘em on.

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We fastened them with velcro dots.  When you open up the backpacks, there are two different compartments for storage!  The kids LOVED these!!!!

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We also set out little *portfolios* stuffed FULL of the kids’ work.  We’ve been collecting various little projects since the beginning of the school year.  It was SO much fun to see how much they’ve grown since the beginning.  The biggest difference was their handwriting and overall writing skills.  The growth is TREMENDOUS!!!!

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Here’s our first grade hallway.  I love the way it turned out!!  The parents will typically decorate the halls for each grade level for Open House, but our team decided to decorate it ourselves this year.  It took lots of work, but it was worth it!

Our theme:  Traveling through America {a journey through American symbols}

The journey starts at the beginning of our hallway right outside my door.  The biplane is carrying a big banner with all the words to “America the Beautiful”.  We tried to coordinate each display with the different lines of the song.

My class displayed our bald eagles {courtesy of Deanna Jump’s America Unit}

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Next stop…Kentucky!  Birthplace of Abraham Lincoln.  My sweet neighbor displayed her darling Lincolns along with a writing activity.  Presh!

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Now driving to the land of the free, home of the brave:  Colorado!  {purple mountain majesties}  This class displayed their tear paper flags and a Pledge of Allegiance writing activity.

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Now driving through Virginia:  home of George Washington.  My sweet teammate, Mrs. Bailey, displayed her class’ George Washingtons & corresponding writing amidst a winding road of cherry trees.  Love!

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Next up: Philadelphia!  Home of the Liberty Bell.  LOVE these!  Of course, this darling idea is courtesy of Deanna Jump’s America Unit.  My sweet team leader found these placemats at Hobby Lobby that we cut into the shape of a bell…they were PERFECT!!  Looked just liked a weathered bell!!!

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Now off to New York:  home of Lady Liberty!  My sweet teammate’s mom painted this darling Statue of Liberty!!  Her class displayed the Lady Liberty directed drawings from Deanna Jump’s America Unit.  Love!!

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Now our tour must end.  SO, we will ‘crown thy good with brotherhood from SEA TO SHINING SEA!!!” {with a little cityscape & fireworks :)}  How’s that for a great trip?!?!

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Right across from the cityscape is our big Lady Liberty foot!!  We got this FABULOUS idea from Deanna Jump’s America Unit.  This had to be the COOLEST activity EVER!!  The kids LOVED it!!!

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That concludes our journey ;)

Here’s a little peek at the rest of the school…

Kindergarten went with a Chicka Chicka Boom Boom theme.  SO cute!

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2nd grade always does the cutest little Guess Who Zoo!  Each classroom takes a different continent.  This was one of my favorite things last year!! 

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Third grade is studying the solar system.  They added a lot more after I took these pics!

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Fourth grade is learning about Texas…

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Fifth grade displayed their geometry riddles…

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And sixth grade is learning about Egypt!

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WHEW!

I guess you could say that this Spring Break is definitely well deserved!!!! 

49 comments:

  1. Omgosh everything is so stinking adorable ! You are lucky to work with such an amazing team

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  2. Simply AMAZING!! The wall art is incredible. That must have taken quite some time to put all together!

    http://firstgradelyonsden.blogspot.com/

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  3. All the walls are AMAZING!!!! Ya'll defintely deserve Spring Break:)

    Jodi
    www.fun-in-first.blogspot.com

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  4. OH.MY.LORD.

    Your school looks incredible!!! I gotta tell ya, there's a part of me that wants to hate you for working at a school that you love so much. Instead, I'm just going to be unbelievably jealous!!!

    I've seriously been thinking of going back to school to make a career change because I hate my job so much these days. It's kinda nice to know that there are still teachers out there who get to do what they love and are appreciated for it!! Again, I'm jealous!!!

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  5. Very impressive! I'm jealous. What an amazing environment for your students! Happy Spring Break!

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  6. I am a long-time "blog-stalker", but a first time "comment writer" and I just felt compelled to tel you that I'm speechless at the magnificent Open House display you (and your school) have put together.

    IN.CRED.I.BLE!

    Thank you for sharing your talents in the cyber world. You inspire me. :)

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  7. HOLY COW! The school looks beautiful....I hope the parents realize how lucky they are to have such wonderful teachers, I don't know what I would want more, to be able to work with you all or send my kids there. GREAT JOB!!

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  8. Wowie wow wow!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Your school looks INCREDIBLE.
    How cool for the kids?!?!

    Have a WONDERFUL Spring Break!!!

    Alexandra
    www.thefirstgradesweetlife.blogspot.com

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  9. What an AMAZING project. It looks WONDERFUL! I am sure the parents were very impressed ad the children were doubly proud!
    Do you have access to the pattern the teachers used for the portfolios? Those look great too! Thanks for sharing!
    Cindy

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  10. That all looks amazing! I'm so jealous that your district let's y'all do that kind of thing. We aren't allowed to do that kind of stuff! SO JEALOUS!

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  11. I am utterly amazed and jealous! Here in NJ, we can't have more than 20% of our walls covered. That also includes the bulletin board spaces, both inside and outside. We are also not allowed to put work on windows, walls without cork, or on shelves. It's so hard to make crafts because you have to send them right home since there's no room. :(

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  12. We have Open House in September with hardly a moment to put a piece of paper on the wall. This is magical! Creativity MUST be on everyones resume to be hired at this school. Teamwork and Synergy is explosive!! I'm not sure we have that much bulletin board paper. Your school should be featured in.... AND your district should push for this feature... Keep inspiring us all!

    Cheryl
    Primary Graffiti

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  13. OMGosh!!! I'm amazed!!! Everything looked so beautiful:) Enjoy your Spring Break!!!


    Anna
    www.fun-n-first.blogspot.com

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  14. Cara, that really looks wonderful! I bet your kids LOVE to be in your classroom! Isn't it great to love your school? I absolutely love mine, too. I'm in year number 2, but if I had a choice my school is where I would want to retire :)

    Colleen Patton
    Mrs. Patton’s Patch

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  15. WOW and INCREDIBLE are all I can say!!!

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  16. What an amazing learning environment your school has created! Enjoy your well deserved Spring Break! :)

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  17. Wow, that's incredible! We don't do an open house, but after seeing this, I may have to convince my fellow teachers and principal!

    tekyteach.blogspot.com

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  18. it all looks darling! good job!! :)

    -lindsey
    www.theteacherwife.blogspot.com

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  19. WOW!!! it’s all I can say… How do you stick everything to the wall? It’s beautiful! I would LOVE to visit your school some day!

    Conchy

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  20. JEALOUS!! I wish I taught at your school! I get ugly looks from the other teachers at mine for decorating our hallway with our learning :(. It looks like you have amazing teachers (and administration)!

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  21. OH.MY.STARS. Your school looks AMAZING!!! SOOOO very jealous....you must have an amazing team! :)

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  22. Like everyone else, I am in awe of the creativity in your school! I am also curious how you attach everything to the wall?

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  23. I have never seen anything like that! Your school is amazing!! All of the teachers there are so creative and artistic. You must only have the best of the best at your school.

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  24. Let me know when a spot opens up! I'm moving down!!!!! ;)

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  25. Holy cow! You all did such an A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. job!!! Your hard work will be SO appreciated! I, too, am jealous. My school has ROCK walls...as in, little tiny rocks pretruding out of the wall. SERIOUSLY. Yuck.
    Good luck at Open House. It looks awesome!

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  26. Oh my goodness, what a fabulous school you work in! You and all of your teaching peers did a great job of making your hallways look incredible. Your classroom looks great, too!
    This is my first year teaching at a charter school. I really like the school, but since our building is dual purpose (it's also a church) we are extremely limited in what we can put on the walls. At first, I thought I would love not being able to put anything up in the hallway (huge time saver, you know?), but I have found that I really miss seeing student work in the halls.
    Not that I ever did anything nearly as interesting as these pictures at my old school, though!

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  27. These displays are so amazing! They are wonderful. Thanks you for posting them, it's inspirational.

    Ms. M
    www.msk1ell.nlogspot.com

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  28. AWESOME JOB!!! This inquiring mind, like a few others, is wondering how you stick everything to the walls and have it stay?!

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  29. It looks wonderful!!!!! I absolutely love the backpacks...how do you make them? Your school looks like a great place to work :)

    Curls and a Smile

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  30. It looks completely amazing! How fun for you and the kids and their families!
    Could you share how you made the backpacks? Was is just brown paper bags? I love these! So Cute!

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  31. Way too cool! Just {amazing}!

    One quick question: how did you get your big wall paper to look textured? Did you crinkle it somehow?

    Just too cool ;)

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  32. I love those backpacks/portfolios. Do you have a template or pattern for them?

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  33. I love all the pictures! You all did an amazing job! I'm also wondering about the backpacks. :) It looks like you cut a bag in half and then cut 3 sides of the bottom portion (to fold over the flap). Do you use the upper half of the bag to make another section? If so, do you staple the bottom and then tape it to the other piece? I would love more details on how to make them. They would be great for our end of the year theme unit where we travel from class to class. Thanks for sharing so many wonderful ideas with us!

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  34. Wow! Tell me where to send my resume. I want to teach at your school!! I am in L-O-V-E!

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  35. Your hallways are AMAZING! The fire marshall would have a heart attack right AFTER he shut us down! We are not allowed to cover more than 30% of our walls and nothing hanging from the ceiling.
    =(

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  36. Seriously the coolest hallways I have ever seen! It all looks so Awesome!! I wish that my school could steal some creativity from yours! You guys rock!

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  37. I am dying to know how you adhered everything to the wall!!!! I love it!!!

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  38. these pictures are AMAZING!!! I know this is a lot of work but it is wonderful your school does this for open house!!

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  39. Love your display for Open House! Wow!! I wish we could put that much paper on our walls. We can only fill our bullitin boards. Ugh!!

    www.danielnkristie.blogspot.com

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  40. What a special place to learn (and work!) Just amazing!

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  41. Would you mind sharing how you made the red plane?

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  42. Would you mind sharing how you made the backpacks? We love them!

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  43. I would also LOVE to know how you made the paper bag backpack. I have looked and looked and looked online, but I can't seem to find a pattern or directions. I am sure that it is probably so easy, but a few directions would be GREAT! Thanks for sharing!

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  44. Mee too mee too! I want to know how to make paper bag portfolios too!

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  45. Your backpack it's so beautiful, I like it vey much, I also bought on at omega watches for sale
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  46. Your hallways are amazing! I am so impressed.


    Owl About Us


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  47. Love this post!! Those backpacks are amazing. I think they would be great for Student Led Conferences. I would love to know how to make them. I pinned a picture of them on Pinterest.

    April
    Wolfelicious

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  48. I really love this post and all the great ideas! I am wondering how you made the cowboys/cowgirls in the picture at the top of the page? Do you have a template at all that you would be willing to share? Thanks!!

    Terri

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