Things I Can't Teach Without

As a teacher I am always looking for things to make my life easier.  My classroom is my second home. I want it to be comfortable and cozy.  I want it to reflect a little bit of me, I want it to tell the story of who I am as an educator.  Over the years I've tried many new ways to do things.  As teachers we try and try until we find what works best for us.  So, today I thought I'd share what works for me and has made my life just a little bit easier.

These markers are amazing.  They have erasers attached to the end.  They have lasted all year in my classroom and are still going strong.

kleanslate dry erase marcers
No more tangled wired.  I use rechargeable batteries to save on battery usage.caliphone wireless listening center
My iPhone
 I use my iPhone as my camera, my video recorder, my timer, and to hold the music I use in the classroom.  At recess I can call the office if there is an emergency, or when they are paging me over the PA system.  
My Elmo
This has probably been the one thing that has truly changed the way I teach.  We are currently studying the life cycle of butterflies.  I am able to put the container of chrysalises right under the lens and make them appear as large as m students. 
Elmo document camera for kindergarten
Did you notice there is a lot of technology in my list?  Technology has changed the way I teach. My students still get excited when they see the projector turn on.  Whether I'm using the iPad, the Elmo or my laptop, they are focussed.  Perhaps they know I might let them come up and demonstrate something using one of these technological tools.  I don;t know what it is, but I'm glad it works.  

Last, is the iPad.
iPad in kindergarten
They are amazing.  We have some apps that we use daily to support reading. For a few of my kids it is the carrot I can dangle to get them to stop chit chatting and get to work. 

I just wish I had another iPad so I could have a technology center.  I currently have a Donors Choose Project up for one, so just maybe i'll get lucky and it will get funded soon.
Donors Choose

I'm sure There are many other times that make my life so much easier during the day.  I'd love to hear what you have in your room that you just couldn't live without.

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