Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Prettier than cardboard

I need to get ready for my new classroom in the fall, but it's not ready yet.  They're still cleaning it and I can't get in to do much.  So I've got a lot of projects I'm working on and a TON of stuff in my basement.  I decided to get some of those cardboard file boxes from my local office supply store.  I had planned to get the cheapest ones possible because they'd be temporary.   But, when I got there, I saw THESE:

DiVOGA File Storage Box

 They were only a little more expensive than the basic cheap ones, so I splurged.  I plan to decorate my classroom in black and white with a splash of blue, so I thought these would be PERFECT!!

I excitedly began to fold the 6 boxes and lids into shape.  Then I looked at my hands.  The black was rubbing off on my fingers!  EWWWW! 

I decided to get creative and cover the lids with contact paper.  Here's my step by step tutorial for you on how to cover a box lid with contact paper smoothly.

1st:  Measure and cut the contact paper a few inches bigger than the box lid (enough that you can cover the sides and roll the excess to the inside of the lid.

2nd: Peel the backing off of MOST but NOT ALL of the contact paper -- you'll need somewhere to hold it where it won't stick to you.

3rd:  Line up the side of the lid with enough excess that you'll be able to roll it over to the interior.

 4th:  Lay the lid flat on the table carefully so that the contact paper has no/few wrinkles.

5th:  Peel the remaining backing paper off of the contact paper and press against the side of the lid.

6th:  Cut a slit in the contact paper from the edge of the paper to the edge of the lid.  Do this to all four corners, then fold over the two sides.

7th:  Cut the contact paper where the folded part meets the table. Do this at all 4 corners. (I used binder clips to help hold down the contact paper as needed.)

 8th:  Fold the contact paper over the side.  Then fold in the corners.
9th:  Cut a slit in the contact paper to make a triangle in the corner. Fold down the larger part.  Then fold the triangle part into the corner of the lid.  Repeat on all four sides.

 10th:  Sometimes contact paper does not hold well on certain surfaces.  Black duct tape did the trick here!

Here are the finished boxes:

But wait!!! As long as I have the duct tape out... let's cover those handles so that I don't get black stuff on my hands when I move the boxes.

Well, that's it for now.  Tomorrow's another day!  :)

Monday, June 24, 2013

Welcome to my new blog!  Please allow me to introduce myself. 

I've been teaching since 1998, in three different states, and in many different capacities.  I have worked in affluent private schools, poverty-stricken urban public schools, and publicly-funded-but-privately-managed charter schools.  I have taught 4th, 5th, and 6th grades, multi-age classrooms (4/5th or 5/6th), K-2 gifted and talented, Kindergarten ESL, and Adult ESL.

This fall, I am scheduled to return to the classroom after a few years of teaching ESL.  I am very excited to be preparing a classroom all over again, but there's a ton of work to be done.  I will be teaching 5th grade again this year.  This blog is going to be my place to share my progress this summer as I set up for this new endeavor.

I look forward to sharing my ideas, projects, and progress with you.  I'd love to connect with others who are preparing for the classroom.

See you tomorrow for my first project posting!