Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Organizing Your Technology

I am still alive....I know it's been awhile and I am very impressed with all the freebies and post everyone has done, especially those that posted so much over spring break. I will tell you what, I know some of you also follow my Quite A Pear business, and you all really have kept me busy. I am learning to find a balance and juggle being a mommy, wife, teacher, entrepreneur, and blogger (and for those GA teachers I threw that vocabulary word in there just for you all!). So thank you for hanging in there with me! I have great ideas of posts to make...I think of them all day long. If you blog you know what I am talking about, that constant dialogue that goes through your head as you work, make dinner, fold laundry, etc.

Now I guess I will get to my point today...

I thought I would share with you all how I organized my technology in my classroom. Mostly how I organized my own personal laptop, ebeam (interactive board), and document camera. The problem that I faced and always face when I am setting up my classroom is the location of the Internet cables and projector cables (if you have them). They really keep you limited as to where you place your own work station. I do like having my laptop on my desk, however I use my laptop A LOT to project my interactive board files and use my document camera all the time! I never liked the idea of sitting behind my desk and looking as though I wasn't doing anything, but playing on my laptop. I also didn't like the small personal space it left me when I placed my desk near the outlets and cords.

I will tell you that I have become a great hider of all cords! But when I noticed this one little piece of useless (to some) furniture I got so excited and even did a mental slap (WHY didn't I think of this before)!

So here is that furniture:

Don't laugh...you know you have one. Some of you use them for storage, some are collecting dust, others use them as a lamp (now that they have been banned from our classrooms), and even more of you may actually still use them!

Well I must admit I am not one of the latter. I am a tech freak! So I am very very attached to my laptop. I realized that these little carts can be raised up...I know I am probably one of the last ones the realize this, I have seen a few push in teachers using them, but didn't put two and two together (I don't know why). So I decided it was going to be my rolling (well sort of, seeing that I am attached to all the cords) technology cart!

With a little bit of ribbon and approximately 2yds of fabric (2 separate pieces, 1yd each)...this is what I came up with:

I used two separate pieces because I wanted to be able to easily access the shelves underneath (from different angles.

This would be from the "front", because when it is put away and not being used I can still access my "stash". I keep all my teacher's manuals in there, a drawer set with copy paper and cardstock, tissues, wipes, and any current items that we may be in the process of making/using.

This is the "side" view.

This is what it looks like when it is put away and not in use.

So now to see what it looks like when it is actually being used as my Technology Cart!

Notice the MASSIVE amounts of cords! Let's see I have a cord from the document camera, one from the Mimio device (interactive board), Internet cord (we have wireless, but are limited to what we can use while on the wireless), and then the large one that keeps me "tethered" to the wall is the projector/sound cord.

I simply wrapped the card using hot glue on both the fabric and ribbon. I would say I stand behind it and walk back and forth to the board for most of the day. However when I am using the document camera and making an organizer or something with the class I found that my tall director's chair is the PERFECT height! 

So there you have it, my Technology Cart!

On another note I am in the process of changing my original FB page of Dandelions and Dragonflies back into a page specifically for my blog. If you have been following me from the beginning my FB page was combined with my buckets....when the buckets took off and the blog when a separate direction (more toward teaching) I felt the need to separate the two. So with my business partner joining me we created Quite A Pear...where you will find the buckets I use in my classroom and such for sale. Since then Dandelions and Dragonflies FB page has set dormant for some time. I am going to attempt to use it in correlation with my blog. Could I have any more balls in the air???? Hey I'm young,  kind of...and you only live once. We will see how it all goes.



3rd Grade Thoughts said...

Love this! I actually just covered up the bottom of a cinder block shelf I have in my meeting area, and never thought of the same strategy for my projector cart! Thanks!! Now I have an excuse to go buy more cute fabric :)

3rd Grade Thoughts

luckeyfrog said...

I have always thought a cart is the way to go! Cords are such a mess, though. It's too bad we can't get reliable wireless classroom technology (that's cheap!). You made your cart so cute, and I love it! Thanks for sharing!


luckeyfrog said...

Haha- totally copy/pasted the wrong thing there! Sorry!

Luckeyfrog's Lilypad

Anonymous said...

That's what I use for my laptop cart! And I've been wanting to put a skirt on it all year but never have. Yep, that means you can see all my "junk"...it's organized in a caddy at least! :) I also have an old barstool I repainted that is the perfect height. I'm like you...I constantly use my interactive whiteboard but always feel like It looks like I'm just surfin the web.
Thanks for sharing!!
B. Farrell in Illinois