Friday, January 20, 2012

Shopping Center

When I share my centers with my teammates, they usually ask me, "how do you come up with your ideas? Where do you get the stuff for your centers?"  I do not use premade, commercial centers such as file folder games.  I think that children respond better to authentic and orginal activities.  The list for where I get my inspiration is long and varied:

  • my mom--she has a way of finding the neatest things that I can put to use in my classroom. I love when she calls me and tells me she is sending me something that she thinks I can probably use.  Then she usually calls a couple weeks later to ask me what I used it for!
  • yard sales and flea markets--an object will just catch my eye and I figure out a way to use it.
  • Dollar Tree--this store is like a treasure hunt for me! I walk through every aisle and look at everything they have, but in the back of mind I am thinking about what kind of reading or writing activity I can do with it.
  • Target--see Dollar Tree, but only when I have a gift card (or my mom is buying)!
  • Walmart--especially look in the party supplies section.
  • Lowes and Home Depot--grab paint sample cards! Walmart also has them. Get the strips with different color shades and also the solid ones.
  • retiring teachers--they love to get rid of their junk.
  • gallery walks---when I have to go to other schools for workshops I always write down centers that I see set up in other teachers' classrooms
  • blogs--other teachers are so creative and we all love to share
  • You Tube--this is a great place to see centers in action
  • Pinterest--if you are not on this website, then wait until the weekend to check it won't want to get off! 

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