Friday, July 18, 2014

#70Days - Classroom Decor


I went by school today - just briefly. I knew I would probably be changing rooms.  I felt depressed when I saw it! Yuck!

We are a big school - but not under one roof.  Instead we are a collection of about 12 buildings.  It's difficult to see in pictures the accumulation of buildings

  • The new room is in a building without windows except for some architecturally designed skylights - vertical, high, not visible.  
  • The room is smaller than last year's - not a happy thought with 24 to 30 students in each class.
  • Last year's room was in the ninth grade center. I still teach 9th grade (Algebra 2) but now I am on the hallway with my PLC. That's a benefit!

The room used to be a science room.  I'll use the science demonstration table as my desk.  I'm thinking about a way to decorate that electrical pole to give it a fun or useful element.

I may use the chalkboard behind my desk for student work, to post our quotes, fun drawings - maybe students could keep it decorated.  I need to find some good colored chalk.

The phone cord taped to the back wall will be the first thing to come down.  I don't mind if the phone is on the floor near my desk.  Still thinking about that.

The framed area used to have a homemade whiteboard on it - but the board is gone.  Now it is framed paper.  I'm thinking it will be the permanent bulletin board.  Maybe even a picture of the outdoors ... the window I long for.

The small bookcase in the back of the room will get a new home.  I don't think I'll need it because on the far right wall (not pictured) is a counter with cabinets.

I've asked for a whiteboard in the center where the projector shines - instead of a screen.  Last year I would project and write on the work.  It was very convenient.  I can do without it ... just nice.

The small bulletin board in the front of the room will be the focal bulletin board - our calendar, 'grit' quotes, vocabulary.

What I don't have a picture of is the far left wall - the one with a counter and cabinets.  I plan put student folders on the counter - in filing boxes by class period.  Everyday supplies will also be on that counter.  So those things have the potential to be colorful and helpful.

I need a small table near the front door - I think I can "steal" the one in my former room.  I use that table to lay out the supplies that students need for class.  It is one organizational technique that's important to me.

I'm thinking black and white decor which I used last year won't work for this year.  The black from the science desk and counter will be plenty of black.  I'm going to need some color.  Having several years in an elementary school I happen to love primary colors.  I also love blues and greens - representing the sea.

I think I'm going to start with a piece of cloth to cover the back of my desk (the side facing the students).  It's brown, splintering.  I can attach a cloth with velcro.  I plan to visit a fabric store to see what's available.  I'm thinking some simple pattern will help me decide on the colors for the rest of the room.

I think my reaction today is because the room feels small and cramped..  My last room was a nice size, movable teacher desk so I could rearrange the room as needed, and windows.

I know I'll get a handle on this room but it's going to take some creative work! And quite possibly some last minute work ... we were asked to box up our belongings and told all the boxes would be moved.  The boxes are still in our old rooms.  The new building is still under construction - the principal is waiting for permission to move into it.  So all of the room swaps are in a holding pattern.

I need to do all I can do outside of the room itself!

If you have cute ideas, pinterest links, or suggestions please send them my way!


  1. What about this collection as a starting point? I have ordered from Mardel and they have awesome customer service, quick and inexpensive shopping. Check out that collection or others. Lots of great things there. Good luck! Definitely start with a color scheme and try to coordinate.

    1. Sherrie -

      I was in Mardel's the other day - loved their products. I decided to hold off buying too many of them to see if I could "recreate" any from the thrift shops - and from sales!. Knowing I'm going with blues, greens is helping ... I'm sure I'll land on some cute ideas soon! Thanks for sharing your ideas!

  2. For several years I had a classroom with no windows - I expanded the few African violets I had and got a light/timer. They thrived and I enjoyed the little bit of nature they added. Of course you can always add more of a math purpose for them. The science lab feel makes me wonder if it will influence you to have more math/science connections

    1. Love the idea of a light and some african violets. I'll think about that! I haven't been in a science room before - so we'll see how it goes :) thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your thoughts!