If you are setting up a new classroom or thinking about giving your current room a makeover, here are 5 tips to help you get started in the right direction!
Pin Your Ideas
Using Pinterest and Social Media is a wonderful way to collect ideas and see how other teachers make their classrooms cute AND functional. Make your own classroom theme board and add ideas as you see them. Consider focusing on the ways you want your classroom to run. For effective classroom management, think about some of the following questions when searching for ideas:
Make It Meaningful
When choosing your classroom theme, be sure and pick something you will LOVE seeing EVERY SINGLE DAY! Teachers spend a majority of their time in the classroom, so making it beautiful takes a little extra effort but it goes a LONG way! If you're worried about choosing a theme and liking it for the long haul, consider sticking with a color palette instead. Think about your geography, student interest, and the climate of your school.
Check out some of my FAVORITE classroom themes and decor at the bottom of this post!
Once you've selected a theme or color palette, ask for donations! Send out a Facebook post requesting things you might reuse or repurpose for your classroom. Check Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace for gently used items!! Things to look out for include:
Consider Students with Special Needs
Students with disabilities or special needs might struggle with a chaotic and overwhelming classroom theme. My advice is to choose a simple, calm color palette and avoid the need to fill the walls with tons of posters and random items. Keep it simple and clutter free. Everything should have a purpose and provide meaning or structure to your classroom routine. Less is MORE! Starting off the year with bare walls is a great way to provide a blank canvas for your new students, allowing you the opportunity to tailor the room for them!
*Side Note: I'm not advocating for you to keep the walls bare. Environmental print is very important in an early literacy classroom. I'm simply advocating for purposeful choices that the students will use and working with your students to make the space functional.
Function OVER Fun
This is SO IMPORTANT!! If you learn anything from this blog post, remember this: Spend the majority of your time on FUNCTION over FUN. And by fun I mean cutesy decor and fancy, Instagram worthy classroom photos. You can have the cutest classroom and hate your job every day because you struggle with effective classroom management or smooth transitions due to a cluttered environment. Plan your space to make it conducive for student learning and ADJUST as needed!
Check out some of my FAVORITE Classroom Themes and customize one for YOUR classroom!
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