Saturday, August 6, 2016

Custodians and Cleaning Up, Deciding How To Decorate

"Silent gratitude isn't much use to anyone."
-- Gertrude B. Stein

I was locked out of my classroom for most of the summer when the superintendent decided several years ago that teachers could not enter the district schools more than a week later than the last day or a week before the first day of school.  This was annoying because I preferred to take my time cleaning up from the year and because I also wanted to prepare for the following year at my leisure and there was just too much to take home to work on there.

But the decision made sense because summer was the time when the custodians were able to do a thorough top-to-bottom cleaning throughout the building without the distraction of students and teachers being present.  They cleaned the carpets in the classrooms, painted the walls in the hallways, moved furniture around, replaced air filters, and waxed all the floors, and did everything else necessary to the smooth functioning of the school that they couldn’t do during the academic year.
Custodians are the superheores of summer in US schools! Show your appreciation & find some classroom decor in the August ELL linky party. | The ESL Connection
Thank you for all your hard work!  Source: The ESL Nexus
That meant I had just one week to pack up my materials, stack furniture against the walls, cover bulletin boards with plastic garbage bags ripped apart, get all my milk crate boxes of books off the counters under the windows and cabinets, cover the computers with sheets so they didn’t get dusty, and clean off my desk.  Which by the end of the year I could have used as an example of what happens when a cyclone hits. 

We were allowed back into our classrooms one week before the start of school.  I guess it was a good thing that I had to spend many hours during that week in my room getting ready since it prepared me for the upcoming year when I’d spend ten hours a day there over the next ten months.  But at the time, I resented having to get up early while on my vacation!  What I most hated about that last week before school started was cleaning the desks and chairs and counters.  We were supposed to use only approved disinfectants but everyone just used whatever cleaner they had at home.  All the little bitty bugs that got through the cracks in the windows, only to die on the countertops…yuck.
Custodians are the superheores of summer in US schools! Show your appreciation & find some classroom decor in the August ELL linky party. | The ESL Connection
I'd rather be teaching! Source: Pixabay
But the room always looked beautiful and once I got everything back in its place and had decorated the bulletin boards and cabinet doors, I was psyched to see students again.  Thanks to the custodians, I was ready to start the year off in the best way possible.  I always made a point of bringing them a gift to show my appreciation for all their hard work.  It was usually a large tin of cookies with a thank you card and I left it in the small room they used for their breaks.  And whenever I saw a custodian, I thanked them in person.  How do you thank your school custodians for getting your building ready for the start of school?  Please leave your comments below so we can get some new ideas!
Custodians are the superheores of summer in US schools! Show your appreciation & find some classroom decor in the August ELL linky party. | The ESL Connection
Without custodians, schools would be a mess!  Source: Pixabay
And, now that your room is all cleaned up, how are you decorating it?  What kinds of classroom decor do you put up to welcome your students at the beginning of the year?  Do you have a theme or a color scheme or is the content most important?
Add your multicultural classroom decor materials to the August ELL Excelerating linky party & find resources for your own classroom, too. | The ESL Connection

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3 comments

  1. Thanks so much for hosting! I can't wait to check out everyone else's great ideas!

    Melanie

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    Replies
    1. You're very welcome and thanks for commenting!

      Delete
  2. Great article. Thanks for sharing such a useful post.

    cleaning materials in chennai

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