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Sunday, October 7, 2012

These Are a Few of My Favorite Things!

So I've come across some really great ideas on Pinterest and I'd like to share what I've done with the ideas. First of all I'll share my favorite thing of all....DRY ERASE CIRCLES!!!! Oh my goodness how they have made my life sooooo easy! First a picture...
I found these at Ross. They were $6 for a pack of 2. Just as luck would have it they had exactly 3 packs, so I got them all. I put them on my small group table and fell in love. So, I got to thinking about how great it would be to have one at each seat. Well, glory be....Our youth pastor at church works at a graphic design/sign company. One day I showed him this picture and asked him about purchasing some vinyl from him so I could cut the circles on my Cricut. Well, he offered to cut them for me at a small price. Better yet, when he brought them to me he told me that his boss was willing to donate them to my classroom since I was a teacher! Can you believe it? Now I have one on every seat and it's amazing!!
I use them during our phonics time right now. I have a bucket in the middle of each table with dry erase markers and baby socks (2 kids=LOTS of socks). I use my ActiveSlate and can walk around the room and write on my ActiveBoard while the students are working at their seats. It has saved me about 15-20 minutes of instructional time because I don't have to pass out boards and markers, then take them up. I love these things.


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38 comments:

Sarah said...

What exactly are they made of? I'd like a couple for my dining room. Thank you.

Keri Lewis said...

It is sticky vinyl. You can find them everywhere now!

Stacey Landau said...

Give me an example of where I can find them and in what department, please.

Amy Lynne said...

SO cool...I hate all the time wasted getting boards out too. Such a great idea!

Keri Lewis said...

I actually found these in August in the dorm section. But, if you can find the sticky vinyl (Hobby Lobby, Michaels) you can cut them yourself. These are about 8-10 inches in diameter. They are at my small group table. I loved them so much that I asked a friend who works for a graphics company if he could cut enough for my entire class. He happily obliged! Ask around or check the craft stores. Sometimes you can find the dry erase circles in the wall art sections of craft stores. They are invaluable!

Anonymous said...

Will the circles come up without damaging the tables?
I love this idea!!

Anonymous said...

How do these hold up in terms of daily classroom happenings. We do alot of different activities at our seat and my kids get glue, pencil, crayons, etc. on the table all the time. Don't these circles suffer the consequences? I'm thinking the glue could be especially troubesome. What is your experience with a few months of use?

Keri Lewis said...

They have held up very well! We clean our tables all the time and my kids do have glue and things at their seats. So far I've found that any glue comes up pretty easily with a washcloth and some table cleaner. The one thing. As far as ease of removal, I have had to reposition them a few times and have had no trouble getting them up. They didn't leave a residue like a sticker would, and they went back down easily. We use these multiple times every day, especially for early finisher activities and during our phonics block. I am very pleased with how well they've done.

Anonymous said...

do they get cloudy after using them awhile? how do you clean them?

Keri Lewis said...

After a while they do get cloudy, but I've found that using a magic eraser on them daily helps. It's definitely something I'll have to think about replacing at the end of the year, perhaps. But with as much as we've used them already, I'm really pleased at how well they've held up.

Jessica Hamilton said...

These look like so much fun! I am a huge dry erase fan and I have a whole folder of activities for each student that they are able to use their dry erase marker for during down time and for different assignments. They love them! Mine are just laminated card stock, but I like this - Cute! As far as cleaning, you might check out the Dollar Tree (I think Walmart sells it too). But they have this cleaner called Awesome Cleaner. This is what I use on my dry erase stuff and it takes away that cloudiness!

By the way, I am your newest follower and I am loving your site. I am just getting mine really going and would love for you to see it. http://hangingoutinfirst.blogspot.com/

Keri Lewis said...

Thanks for the tip! I'm in Dollar Tree all the time so I will try to find it next time I'm in there! I'm trying to keep the blog going, I'm new to this as well. I'll check yours out, too!

Kristen said...

Hi! I know this is an older post, but I loved this idea, thank you! How have they held up? Do they erase easily? Thanks again!

Keri Lewis said...

They have really held up well. I will have to replace them at the end of the year for sure. My one piece of advice is to not let them use the colored (especially red) dry erase markers on them. They really stain the circles. I try to keep all black at the tables, but sometimes you have to use what you've got. The dry erase crayons work really well on them. I absolutely love having them!

Kristen said...

Thanks Keri! I don't mind replacing them, I kind of figured at the end of the year they might need it (I contact paper my tables and I know they do!). I love the idea of the dry erase crayons, I've never tried those before. Thanks for the quick reply...have a great weekend!

Keri Lewis said...

yes, dry erase crayons are great! I found them at Target. Crayola makes them. They are a little pricey, but worth it. And they erase very easily. I lucked up and found them at the end of the Back to School season on clearance for a couple of bucks. They even come with a little wiping cloth! So convenient!

Anonymous said...

I'm disappointed that this didn't work for me. Bought the roll of vinyl from Hobby Lobby and the dry erase barely erased off...I used black. :(

Keri Lewis said...

Oh dear. NEVER use the Hobby Lobby brand vinyl. It's terrible. I should have made that very clear. I bought it for my Cricut once and it wouldn't even stick to the cutting mat. The vinyl I used was from a graphics company. Check with one in your area and see if they would be willing to donate any scraps to your classroom. Many of them will be happy to do so. You can also order the vinyl online. Make sure it is glossy as the matte will not work as well. If I come across a link for one that I think will work I'll let you know! Don't give up on this. It's so worth it.

Keri Lewis said...

Here is a link for glossy sticky back craft vinyl. It looks like a good price. My circles are 8' in diameter and are plenty big enough, although the 6' would have been ok, too.

Keri Lewis said...

http://www.vinylsuperstore.com/categories/Glossy-Vinyl/

Keri Lewis said...

To clarify on the Hobby Lobby comment in one of the replies, I have seen the pre-cut dry erase circles/squares etc...at Hobby Lobby, Target, Wal Mart and places like that in the home department. Usually they'll be in tubes labeled "wall art" or something like that. I do not recommend the HL brand vinyl that is sold in the tubes in the craft section. It is the worst vinyl I've ever seen. It wouldn't even stick to my Cricut cutting mat and was so flimsy.

Mrs. B said...

OK, now I want dry erase circles that I can use as spots on the carpet for my younger music classes... sit on your spot, then move back and use it for writing rhythms, checking for understanding... :-)

Keri Lewis said...

That's a great idea! They have made my life so easy.

Sra. Carro said...

Hey, Keri! Just stole your idea and posted at my blog. We'll see how it works! Thanks for your genius!


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Keri Lewis said...

Great! It's too good of an idea not to share!! I hope you love it as much as I do. It's been such a great tool!

Melissa said...

This is an awesome idea Keri! I have extra dry erase paper that I used to make squares on my table yesterday. Thanks for the amazing tip! Btw, your blog is so cute! I am your newest follower!

Keri Lewis said...

Great!! Let me know how you like them!!

Melissa said...

I definitely will!! I blogged about it today too: http://fashioncrazelearningdays.blogspot.com/2013/01/built-in-whiteboards.html Thanks again for the great idea Keri! :)

Lisa said...

I found your blog through pinterest. I love this idea! Thanks for sharing. I'm also your newest follower. Come visit my blog sometime! :)

~ Lisa
Teaching Kindergarten Kiddos

Keri Lewis said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Keri Lewis said...

I discovered the magic solution for cleaning my circles today. Thanks to Jessica over at Hanging out in First, I took her suggestion and used the Awesome cleaner with a magic eraser. Needless to say, it was Awesome! You get it at Dollar Tree!!

http://www.hangingoutinfirst.blogspot.com

Mrs. Egley said...

Found your blog through pinterest. Love all of your ideas

Mrs.Egley’sKindergarten

MsJordanReads said...

I just ordered these from Target. They have larger packs but I'm going to try the pack of three first. I love this idea for my Reading Room. Thanks for sharing! :)

Keri Lewis said...

Yay! Let me know how you like them!

Leslie atKindergartenWorks said...

Keri, Girl - I just saw that your post has been picked up by: http://www.buzzfeed.com/peggy/clever-classroom-tips-for-elementary-school-teachers. Congrats! So cool to see your idea get picked up by such a big site.
-Leslie
TeachJunkie.com
KindergartenWorks.com

Keri Lewis said...

I'm flabbergasted!!! Thank you for letting me know!

Tisha said...

Love this idea! They are available on Amazon too, that is where I just ordered some for my small group table. Amazon's price is $9 for 3.

Stephanie Yarboro said...

I noticed there is a peel and stick version of this that Avery makes. Does anybody know if these work just as well?

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