For now, let's talk about my love for...
For those of you who do not live by one, I'm sorry! Definitely check out their website here. It almost rivals my love of Target. Almost. Anyway, it's a warehouse full of wonderful finds on the cheap. The quality of most things is pretty fantastic for the price, plus there is a huge variety! I have bedroom furniture, rugs, organizers, and kitchen goods in my condo all from Ikea. They also have great resources for parents and teachers. Don't forget the amazing warm-from-the-oven cinnamon rolls for $1.
Here are some finds that work well in the classroom:
Magazine Files! 5 for only $1.99. These work great for organizing your classroom library. I think it's important to model to students that as lifelong readers we choose books by interest and then find a "best fit" book from there (as opposed to leveling out the classroom library completely). I plan on separating my nonfiction books by topic in these. Colorful labels and sharpies a must.
Many classrooms have an easel, usually next to a rocker on a large carpeted area. I love it as an additional learning space and opportunity to get the students out of their seats. If I can't find a larger one off craig*slist or from a garage sale, I will start with this. At $14.99 it's definitely a good start (it has a whiteboard surface on the opposite side).
If you are a preschool/K teacher- they have great resources for sensory tubs and fine motor skills. Check out this amazing blog for ideas.
This is what teachers do in the summer...definitely take a break, but also plan and dream about the next year. My plan definitely includes a few trips to Ikea,