I spent last night and all day today at a FABULOUS workshop on Autism.
I learned SO much and am officially on overload...
After the workshop I went to the Bank Street Bookstore and somehow walked out with $100 worth of posters, books, flash cards, and phonics games. How does that happen?
I spend money on my classroom now in such a different way than I did when I worked for the DOE. When I worked for the DOE, I bought paper, pencils, paid for copies, and sometimes bought things like center books. Now, all basic supplies are provided, and so are basically all teaching resources we want. The only thing is that if the school buys them they belong to the school, and some of these things I want to keep (because I don't plan on staying here forever), and so I buy things that develop me professionally and that make my classroom more inviting...more like the classrooms I remember as a child).
Last year, I would have never DREAMED of buying posters, or a game to help kids learn blends and diagraphs.
Yet these are the kinds of things I remember about elementary school, and the kinds of things you find when you walk in to suburban and private schools. Neat classrooms - lots of Lakeshore things.
Money doesn't equal great classrooms, but I like knowing that when my students look back on their elementary school career, they will not remember going to a school with bars on the windows - they'll remember a classroom with bright posters and fun games :)