Every teacher in the UK wants their classroom to be an engaging, welcoming space for their students to learn in. Often updates to the look and feel of the classroom are undertaken every few years, led by the school without a great deal of personalisation. Below we’ve come up with some top tips you on how you can update your classroom, with some great money saving DIY ideas!
1. Transform boxes
Free boxes that you get from the post office or supplies such as printer paper boxes, can be worked into great desk tidies or post boxes for your students. They also work as great magazine, book or folder holders – or paper trays for your desk, helping you to stay organised. You can involve your students in decorating and personalising their boxes. If appropriate, talking to them about what the boxes could be used for will help to engage students and get them thinking about ways in which they would feel better organised through the day.
2. Individual whiteboards
Buying a pack of paper plates with a wax centre can be turned into fantastic individual white boards for your students. They'll love the fun of having a whiteboard they can pick up for certain tasks - and it will help you keep better control of your pupils, as answers can be written and held up instead of shouted out. It can be a great way to help younger pupils communicate how they're feeling, or thinking without having to say it verbally.
3. T-shirt cushions
Stuffing cushions into old, unwanted T-shirts is a great way to update your reading area, keeping the area personal and cosy. You could ask your pupils to bring in unwanted T-shirts that don’t fit any longer. Each student could end up with their own personalised cushion, making reading time even more fun for everyone in the classroom. Another great idea for quiet reading time to let your students flip their chairs over and put cushions on the upturned seat – to turn them into reclining seats. The fun element could reap huge benefits for engaging your students in their reading!
One of the best things about these hacks is that you’re recycling materials that would otherwise be sent to waste. This is an important part of the process to engage your students – highlighting to them how many products seen as seen can actually be reused. It’s also a fun way to encourage your pupils to take responsibility for the look of their classroom, They spend as much time there as you do – so giving them an opportunity to input into the interior of the classroom can go a long way in building their respect for you and help them look forward to each day in school.