Thursday, July 1, 2010

Choice Board

Today's Thrifty Thursday Tip is: Recycling Crystal Lite Containers to Make a Choice Board

All those who love to micromanage, please raise your hand!

Oh, look at me waving both hands high into the air.

I’m really excited to put this into effect in the fall.  I do assign kids to groups and centers during our literacy block, but there are times when there is opportunity for “choice” on their part.  In my class there are two such opportunities that come to mind: Fun Friday and Indoor Recess.

To keep some sanity in the classroom, maintain peace and to be efficient, I limit the number of students in one activity/area and also limit the options. 

First, I’ll explain how this works and then I’ll explain how I made it.

How it Works:

  • Each child has a popsicle stick with his name on it.
  • Each container will display a small card under the paperclip.  The card will state the activity and the number of students who may participate.
  • I will also have a slightly larger, colored card that I can slide underneath the original one to signal that the choice is at capacity and can no longer be selected.

How it is Made:

For months I’ve been looking at the new Crystal Lite containers and trying to determine a use for them.  I finally had my lightbulb moment, sent an email to the parents of my students requesting them and had more than enough to do this project the next day.  If you don't have the opportunity to ask for donations of these because it is summer then drink up.  It is cool and refreshing after all. :)

Put a push pin through the plastic container.

Select paper to match your classroom color scheme or theme.  Scrapbook paper is awesome for this.  Cut the paper to fit around the container.

Slide a paperclip over the top of the paper.

Apply a stripe of hot glue to the back of the paper and attach it to the container.

Label sticks (details on the lil' cuties above coming soon).

Display on a board and add a cute sign..or click here to buy the one pictured

I love how the push pin allows you to simply flip the container over to remove the sticks.

I bought the rafia at the Dollar Tree (it was a grass skirt) and the scrapbook paper was less than $1.00.  Grand total for this project was under $3.00.

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Anonymous said...

Ok, I'm fairly new here, but I have to say I'm in teacher love.

I've been saving these stupid containers for MONTHS, just knowing I'd find a use for them someday. And here it is! I also love the use of the raffia -- I've seen grass skirts at Party City for $12 - $15, but found that too pricey. The skirts at dollar tree are too short for desk/table use -- but perfect for this board! (I'm doing a beach theme this year, and stealing quite a few of your ideas).

Thank you, thank you, thank you for your OCD and micromanagement ways. I heart this site.

terrie said...

Hi there. I am doing a jungle theme for the second year. I am trying to get ideas how to do it better. I am in love with your choice board. The problem that I run into is coming up with things for them to do. So I was wondering if you would share what some of the choices you have avaiable for your students?

Anonymous said...

I was wondering what choices do you give your students for this time.