Sunday, January 18, 2015

Early Finisher Bins

Last time I talked about one of my new favorite early finishers - student authors. This week it's all about my newest early finisher idea: Early Finisher Bins. I spend most of my summer working on things for the new year. Yeah, I know what you're thinking, "Don't teachers lay on the beach all summer?" Not this freckled one. My summer normally consists of organizing files, finally checking out all of the things I have pinned over the year, and then turning them into tangible items for my classroom. A young intern for the ELL teacher walked into my room and told me that it looked like Pinterest exploded. Frankly, she was right. I try several new things each year. Some succeed, some fail but either way the outcome is always surprising. One of my newest additions this year was the early finisher bin. I have never been the best teacher ever when it came to students who finished early. So this was definitely something I wanted to work on this year. I found a bunch of early finisher ideas on Pinterest and then I made cards, envelopes, and bins for each table in my classroom. I gave each student a zip lock bag of early finisher cards. Then I made bags and envelopes with the early finisher cards taped to them so they knew which cards went with which materials in the bins.

I got these bins at Michaels years ago and frankly they've been sitting in my room longing for a home. I thought this was the perfect use for them. Each table gets a bin with a bunch of materials. There are different types of papers (white, dotted lined, lined with blank space), notepads, envelopes and other things inside.

I have to say that these:

Were by far the most popular thing everyone wanted to do. They LOVED writing letters. We ran out of envelopes in a week! Good thing the dollar tree has more (: I've found this bin to be a great creative outlet for those students who finish their work early. There are a lot of different things inside for them to do so they don't get bored with it. It is also a great and fun way to practice the writing process (which we all know we never have enough time for). Either way, these bins are definitely a keeper for next year!


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