At the end of the school year, my class collectively gave me a gift card to Amazon.com. I loved this, as I can get a variety of things, not only for myself, but for my classroom as well. One of my purchases was Of Primary Importance by Ann Marie Corgill. I've been wanting to read this for quite a while, thanks to the recommendations of two of my First Grade colleagues, Cathy (of Reflect and Refine) and Deb (of Primary Perspective.)
It finally arrived this week! I've had a hard time dividing my reading time between a library book on my Kindle, a book for pure pleasure that I've had on my nightstand since last summer (yikes! that's how little time I have for pleasure reading,) and this professional book. I finally dived into Of Primary Importance today and am having a really hard time putting it down. (And that's saying a lot because that has never happened to me in regards to a professional text.) I read something addressing a topic that I have been struggling with for a couple of years and just had to respond.
Do I keep my teacher desk or get rid of it? I've always used it as a "home base" in my classroom. A place where I plan my lessons, check emails, and keep my supplies. But, do I really need it taking up space in my First Grade classroom, which already feels claustrophobic as it is? Cathy and Deb have both banished the teacher desk from their classrooms. They've said they'd never go back to it. Ann Marie says, "If a large part of the room is filled with a teacher desk, teacher chair, teacher filing cabinets, teacher corner, then there's little space left for the students to move and work in comfortably." Further, she says, "I don't want to send the signal to my students that my needs and my work and my comfort is more important than theirs, and if my area takes up a quarter of the room, then that's exactly the message I'm sending."
In my building, once you get rid of a piece of furniture, you'll probably never get it back again. There's minimal room for storage, so if it doesn't fit, they ship it offsite to a storage facility somewhere else in the district where anyone can claim it. So, once I decide to get rid of it, I've committed to it being gone for good. There is no going back. This isn't a decision I can take lightly.
So, readers, what are your thoughts? Do you have a teacher desk or don't you? What are the pros and cons to getting rid of your teacher desk?