If the dust has just settled on the close of the current school year, your mind is probably focused on summer vacation. However, it’s not too early to think about organizing your classroom for the upcoming school year. From desk placement and school supplies to furniture and equipment, the following tips will help you prepare for the year ahead.
Arranging Your Room Space
Teachers have a load of responsibilities when it comes to educating their students. While helping them prepare for the world ahead through curriculum and studies is a top priority, they also want to make their classroom an environment in which the students will be comfortable and happy learning in. The physical layout of a classroom is a reflection of your teaching style. If you’re looking for the students to collaborate together in groups, you can set up the desk in small clusters. For whole group discussions, you can arrange the various desks in a U shape or circle styled configuration. At the end of the school quarter, you can change the setup of your room space. Simple changes such as changing student and teacher desk placement can help instill creativity.
Add Some Personality
The physical layout of your classroom should also have some personal touches. If you’ve spent your summer vacation traveling, you can adorn your room with artifacts and items that you’ve collected from your various travels. You can also bring in cozy and warm touches such as plants, posters, rugs and other furnishings. If you want your students to be comfortable learning, a small couch with colorful pillows can turn your reading corner into something fun.
Instill the Need to Learn
Bulletin boards, posters, books and other visuals can be inspirational to students throughout the year. While learning can be somewhat of a struggle for some, teachers can make it fun and interesting by setting up the ideal environment with these important tools.
The Right Equipment
Furniture, desks, rugs and chalkboards are all essential items for prepping your classroom. However, other technical gadgets can help boost your teaching skills. From T.V.s and AV equipment to carts and dollies to move the items, electronic pieces can be crucial to making learning fun. Headphones can also benefit students who need quiet to concentrate. CDs playing classical or soothing music may also make great background noise for students who don’t do well with silence.
Let the Children Have a Say
Preparing and planning your room set up may be great for you, but you also want your students to be able to function properly. Rooms with bright lighting can make hyperactive students more restless and stressed. However, some children may learn best in a brighter area of the classroom. You can let your classroom students have a say by allowing them to sit where they feel most comfortable.
Cubbies and Storage Units
The school year is typically littered with an assortment of paperwork. From tests and art projects to essays and notes, you’re going to need a structured space to set up your classroom. Try assigning cubbies to each of your students at the beginning of the school year. They are then in charge of keeping their area neat and clean. Storage units can be necessary for larger projects such as science and art. When your room is in order, you’re students will begin to master the organizational skills and maybe use them at home.
Structured settings can be stressful on students. It can also cage their inner creativity. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box by incorporating unique materials into your classroom. Dry erase surfaces in group settings can promote better interaction. While students were once discouraged from writing on their desks, the newer version of the tables can make learning fun.