I usually post this before the kids come back to school. This year, due to my unfortunate injury, that didn’t happen. Mostly because I wasn’t back in time, but also because I hadn’t finished decorating by the time the kids came back. It was presentable, mind you, just not…done. Things need labels. Moving had to occur. It didn’t help that the week kids came back in my room, the county was there installing my new BrightLink Projector (more coming on this later!) The front of my classroom became the back, and vice versa.
This year, I wanted something light and rustic. No dark colors to bring down the mood. I also wanted functional – boards I could reference but that would could be changed and students mastered skills. I scoured Pinterest for ideas.
My banned book board is a hit with kids. It has really drawn their attention to these titles and the kids have started reading some of them already. I’ve got a range of titles, from all genres, topics and eras. I hung short descriptions underneath each book so kids could get a quick idea of what they are about. I asked my C&M team to borrow some caution tape (which I need to give back..whoops.) Super easy. Super cool to see kids get pumped about reading.
My writing board will be a topic of discussion the more we begin writing. I want students to understand that writing isn’t just the academic paper writing they think of. It is any expression of ideas. I found the idea for creating the banner on Pinterest. I went to the craft store and bought the chevron pennants and some acrylic paint. I used a ruler to mark the zigzags and then painted. It took a couple of coats to cover 100%. Then, I projected the letters using my LCD and traced using a black paint marker. Used a mix of yarn and hemp to hang them. The different types of writing were just typed up a in google doc, printed and then glued on to lined yellow paper. The tissue paper poof was made last year using tissue paper and a tutorial I found on Pinterest. (Did I mention I love Pinterest?) It is also where I found the inspiration for this awesome board! (I admit, it was TPT item and it was a whopping $10. Which, I can’t afford, so I recreated it. But in case you want to buy it, I’ve included THE LINK.)
The final section of this board is my “prove it!” board. Another great idea found on Pinterest. I talk to my kids ALL.OF.THE.TIME about backing up what they say. This was a perfect board to use as a reference. Wit the sentence starters right there, when I ask them to prove it, I can ask them reference the starters to help them build their arguments. I also give this to them on a Google Doc and have WAY more sentence starters broken up by skill (connect, predict, etc.).
My last fun Pinterest find turned classroom tool is this exit ticket bucket system. The pictures on Pinterest do not link to the original poster, but here is another blogger who referenced the same picture. Basically, students will fill out their exit ticket, and drop it in the appropriate bucket on their way out. Haven’t tried it out yet, but I’m hoping if I have them do it on small pieces of paper, the buckets will be big enough. I’m thinking I will ask a question and they will answer on the paper before dropping it in. This will give me an idea who sure they were about their answer before I even read what they put. I love decorating my room. It may have been why I dreamed of being a teacher as a kid.