Back-to-School Classroom Tips
5 Tips to Get Your Classroom Ready
Where did summer go? Ok, it’s still technically summer, but did you look at the calendar lately? School is right around the corner, and for some has already started, so it’s time to prepare your classroom. Use these fun tips for an awesomely organized and decorated classroom.
5 Areas for Classroom Readiness
- Decorating Tips: after arranging all your furniture, it’s time to beautify those bulletin boards. Keep them fun and educational with interactivity.
- Use Velcro or magnets to move items on the board that correlate to current lessons.
- Record words, definitions, or facts on single message devices and hang for speech output.
- If you have students who are rough on the boards, consider laminating the bulletin board paper.
- Organization Tips: let’s face it, keeping anything organized when kids are around is difficult but try these fun tips this year.
- Take pictures showing how things should be put away and then tape them to the front of bins or the front of the shelves.
- Keep track of small classroom timers by attaching them to stretchy wrist bracelets (wired coils).
- Keep track of where your students are when they leave for specials or therapy. Write each student’s name on a clothespin. When they go for speech therapy, occupational therapy, etc., they place their clothespin on a hanging visual schedule by the door.
- For more great organization ideas, check out Mrs. D’s Corner: http://mrsdscorner.com/
- DIY Tips: money doesn’t grow on trees (why the heck not, right?) so use these inexpensive and straightforward DIYs for your classroom.
- Create slant boards by turning a 3-ring binder inside out and using a binder clip to hold it.
- Make charging stations with plastic drawer organizers. Velcro power strips to the back and run charging cords through the back of each drawer.
- Create a quick sensory space using two tall filing cabinets and a tension curtain rod. Hang a curtain between the two filing cabinets, arrange pillows, and have a bin of sensory items for students to relax and recoup.
- Classroom Routines: From waiting in line to turning in assignments, technology use, and morning work, you need a new way to teach classroom expectations.
- Use visuals to teach daily routines. Similar to a visual schedule, create a picture and word representations of your most essential routines.
- For younger grades, sing your routines with fun songs that teach the students about each classroom routine. Use catchy tunes they are already familiar with to make them easier to learn.
- Attention Getters: when you need to get your class’s attention because they are kids and being quiet is not in their nature, have fun re-focusing them.
- Use attention-getting songs with hand gestures. I love the music therapy ideas found here: http://www.tunedintolearning.com/freebie-friday-attention-grabber-chants/
- Use auditory sounds, gestures, and funny sayings to make re-focusing fun. Check out all these great ideas: http://educationtothecore.com/2015/09/25-attention-getters-to-quiet-a-noisy-classroom/