Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Literacy Center Organization

Found another link party, and thought I'd link up again! :)
Check it out here:
Seusstastic Classroom Inspirations

Topic:  Literacy Station Organization

I have to give credit where credit is due, and I'll say I got most of my literacy center ideas from Kindergarten Works.  This website has been a great boost of energy I needed.  Just when I was getting comfortable in Kinder, I got this volt of energy that sparked me to do some fun, new things!  Change is good, right?

So, here goes:
I have 10 literacy centers.  I have the kids rotate through them by keeping them with their classroom jobs partners.  So, when it's time for them to rotate, I just move 1 popsicle stick instead of 2.  So, the popsicle sticks say "Line Leaders" "Computer Equipment" etc.

I keep all of my materials in white tubs I bought at Wal-Mart.  
A teacher friend's dad made this cubby for me!  LOVE IT!!!!  I gave him 1 bin for measurement, told him I wanted 12 bins and bada-bing, bada-boom, DONE :)
I use 5 of the 12 bins for Literacy Centers.

So, let's take a look at each Literacy Center I have:

1.  Big Books.
At each station, I have pockets with "to-do" ideas for my Kinders so they know how to spend their time at the center.
Big Books "to-do":  Read with a pointer or Rainbow your words. My big books are stored in the back of this block wooden easel.  (The to-do cards are attached to the side-my picture should have been zoomed out to show you the easel, sorry 'bout that.)

2.  House
House to-do: Look up words to write.  Make a shopping list.  Call a friend.  Type an e-mail.  Read to Lucy.  (At the beginning of the year, we took a class vote and named our baby doll.)

I sent out a call for broken household items and received a Nintendo DS, iPod Shuffle, iPod touch, iPad, screwdriver, digital camera, 3 misc. cell phones, the cutest toaster I'd ever seen, and so much more... needless to say, our house station is STOCKED!
We made a classroom phone book, so the kids can "call" their friends using our phonebook on the lifeless cell phones.

3.  Writing
Writing to-do:  Look up words to write.  Mail a letter to your friend.
I took a free printable from Kindergarten Works and enlarged it and put it in a document so I could print it on envelopes.  The kids love this!  They feel like grown-ups when they drop their letters in the mailbox.

4.  Detective Center
Detective Center to-do:  Write in your detective Log.  Find the letter or word.
This center is in one of those white tubs, so they take the tub to a designated spot in the classroom to do this center.
I put a few seasonal books in there for the kids to look through.  They get clipboards and laminated paper magnifying glasses to look for the words I specify each week.

5.  Playdough
Playdough to-do:  make a word with playdough.

Got these free printables from Kindergarten Works (Thanks!!)

6.  Letter Tiles
Letter tiles to-do:  Spell your spelling words or sightwords.

7.  Retell
Retell to-do:  Retell your favorite story.  
In this bin you will find 2 books, props, and a black pillow case.  I sewed one end over on the pillow case to make a place for a tension rod to go through.  The kids put the tension rod through and hang the curtain between the 2 doorways of my coatroom.  All I did for props was scan the book pages, print them, cut them out, laminated them, and put them on popsicle sticks.  They LOVE this!! :)  I've got a few 3D props that they can use too- plastic fruit for The Very Hungry Caterpillar; stuffed Clifford dog for any Clifford books, etc.

8.  Poetry
Poetry to-do: Match words you know.  Highlight words you know.  Circle words in your Poetry book.
My poetry station is in a corner of my coatroom hanging on the side of my metal filing cabinet.  They get to read the poem (We've read it several times in class before I put it at the Poetry station), use the index cards to match words, and circle words in their own poetry books.

This is a little invention of my own: I created a word document with 5 rectangles on it.  Colored the rectangles blue, red, yellow, green, etc.  Printed it out on to clear transparency film and ta-da!  Highlighters! :)

9.  iPad station.  I am fortunate enough to have 2 classroom iPads.  The kids are allowed to 2 choices of Apps they can play on during Literacy centers.  I use iPads also during math, quiet time, small group instruction, one on one instruction, and as a reward for good behavior.  They are the BEST!

10.  Teacher station.  That's me! :)  We use a blending board to make our spelling words.  We read a book that is all about our letter of the week.  We clap syllables.  We name rhymes.  You name it, we do it!  I record it all in my handy dandy Literacy Binder for quick reference at conference time.

So, there you have it.  My 10 Literacy Stations.

oh, I also do cross-curricular learning centers in the afternoon, and I store all my center materials in cereal boxes.  Here's a pic.  Let me know if you want to know more! :)


  1. Wow! So awesome! This is a great resource for so many teachers to see and I think even brand new K teachers would get so much out of it! Thanks for taking the time to share so many photos and for explaining so well! So glad that I was able to help add a jolt to your style this year ;) Thanks!
    - Leslie

  2. I am your newest follower! Thanks for joining my linky party! You have some fabulous ideas. I will give you a shout out soon.
    Peace, Mel D
    Seusstastic Classroom Inspirations


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