A variation of fishing line to hang work from ceiling
I saw a teacher hang work from the ceiling in a truly creative way. She used colored yarn and tied one end to the paper clip, and one end to a clothespin. On the clothespin, she glued a laminated cutout or punchout relating to the classroom theme on either side of the clothespin. She then slipped the paper clip in the ceiling (most schools I’ve seen have the type of ceiling that allows for that.) She hangs them at a length that is out of the way, but reachable without climbing up on something. All she has to do is reach up and pop the work in or out of the clothespin. Not only is it quick, the punchouts provide great colorful accents. katarina, Kinder
What to do with those annoying aol cd’s that come in the mail? Use them to decorate your classroom! You can tape them on door windows (back to back) or on the walls. I also love taping them back to back, punch a hole through the middle and slip a long piece of yarn through. Then I tie the ends together attaching a paperclip and slip the paperclip under the ceiling. The kids love looking at them.
I have found that using lamps in my classroom helps students feel more receptive and comfortable. Harsh fluorescent lights were too much for me and I noticed after bringing in some lamps that my students made comments about feeling more comfortable in my room than in other rooms within the school. I teach at-risk teenagers and I really feel that my choice of lighting has helped with attitude and classroom management. Msfrancisenglishteacher, 9, 10, 11
Clear Plastic Boxes instead of…
old cardboard boxes, garbage bags or grocery bags stuffed with teaching resources. These look terrible and convey an unprofessional image to parents and anyone else who happens to be in the school. Invest in some clear plastic boxes. You can label them, stack them and most importantly, you can see what’s in them! They look neat, tidy and professional. They also make the materials easy to transport from room to room. Sarah Elaine Eaton
Decorating Ideas.. Displaying Birthdays
At the beginning of each school year, I like to decorate my desk. This year I have chosen to turn my desk into a ‘gift’. I wrapped it with birthday wrapping paper and made a bow out of other paper and curly ribbon. I used a colorful evelope and placed my name on it and taped it to the front of my desk. Next to my desk sits a 3-file cabinet. I wrapped that with a yellow wrapping paper and die-cut colorful balloons. I attatched curly ribbon at the bottom of each balloon, and placed a student’s name and birthdate on it as well. This frees up wall space, is an eyecatcher, and makes the kids feel special once they see their name and b-date posted!!!! Nikki Ahn, 5th Grade
Hog Wild About Pigs
I used one bulletin board with a big barn that says “Learning Down on the Farm”. On another bulletin board I used two large cows and said “In the MOOd for learning”. On a third bulletin board I made paper plate pigs that said “Hog Wild About Third Grade”. I used a pig notepad from Carson-Dellosa and put each child’s name on their desk. Cindy Frady, 3
When you see plastic canvas on sale in the crafts department, buy lots of it in bright colors. You can easily cut the canvas along the lines, or in patterns, and use it as: borders, picture frames, work frames, accent shapes, bookmarks, placemats, weaving, and lots more. You can even use it for its original purpose(!) – needlepoint.
Pretty View for Housekeeping Center
In my housekeeping center I had a bulletin board in an awkward place. I decided to make it a “window” for the children to look out of while washing dishes, cooking etc… Just make a frame with brown strips of paper, use paper to make a background and create a scene that you can change depending on the season. For winter we cut white corrugated paper to look like snowy hills, a cute cottage and evergreen trees.For spring, the children made tissue flowers which we put in a “window box”. I used a lace curtain to frame the window. It looked great and the children had a great time looking out the window and imagining what they might see. Jaye Darr, Poinciana Elem., Naples, FL, PMH
Decorating With Rainbows
I saw a super cute (huge) rainbow that was made of fabric that was folded over, hot glued and stuffed with cotton. Also,
- there are lots of cute fabrics with rainbow prints that you could use for bulletin board backgrounds. You wouldn’t have to change it during the year because fabric doesn’t fade like paper.
- You could use crepe paper (streamers) to make a fun, flowing rainbow on your ceiling or walls.
- Using rainbow clip art on your newsletters throughout the year would be cute. Add a rainbow screen saver to your computer.
- Print out actual rainbow photos off the Internet to post around your room. Different locations–great for geography/Social Studies. I did a google search for rainbow photos & there are tons of sites with amazing photos.
- Hang prisms from your windows/lights to ceate rainbows around your room.
- Post words to rainbow poems/songs/fingerplays on your walls.
- Use Skittles in a jar as a variation to marbles in a jar for discipline/behavior management.
Use ROYGBIV to make acrostic poems. Color laminating plastic, or clear-vu folders with markers for a see-through effect…
For a yearlong theme, maybe use the pot-‘o-gold idea – that something good is found at the end of the rainbow. Each month it could be a different word placed at the end of the rainbow thing. You could use character words (responsibility, caring, etc.), study words (practice makes perfect, etc.), creativity words (dream, imagine, wish, etc.), vocabulary. Use the concept of a rainbow as a bridge from here to there, that if you dream big, plan, word hard, you can reach the end of the rainbow… and your goal.
Another thought would be to use rainbows as a launch for studying: water, condensation, light, clouds, etc