Taking your classroom to the next level doesn’t need to be exhausting. With the right knowledge and tools, you can create an educational space that is both unique and stunning.
From simple changes in color to adding writable wallpaper, your imagination is the limit. And each addition will further improve the experience of both you and your learners.
Decorating Educational Spaces: How To Upgrade Your Classroom
Most new classrooms are pretty bland – 4 white walls and (if you’re really lucky) a window or two. Not exactly an inspiring learning environment. There are hardly any teachers who won’t put up at least a poster or two to brighten things up. But how well you decorate your classroom isn’t a matter of how much money you spend or how great you are at arts and crafts.
What’s important is being thoughtful. How can you decorate to have the biggest positive impact on your students? From taking advantage of color psychology, to upgrading plain whiteboards with inspiring dry erase wall covering, here are our tips for taking your classroom to the next level:
The Power of Color
Let’s start simple – color. Many teachers arrive at their brand new classroom to be greeted by four blank white walls. All that white isn’t just boring; it can be harmful. There are hundreds of studies on the power of color. Interior designers pay special attention to color because it can strongly influence the emotional impact of a room. Color is a significant factor in why some rooms feel welcoming or not.
While white walls may feel clean and refreshing, without balance from other colors they can feel cold and institutional. It’s hard to feel at ease in an overwhelmingly white space. Yellow adds energy and brightness – this vibrant shade can improve the mood of those in a space. But use it too much, and it can create feelings of anxiety. Green is popular in work and educational spaces because it inspires creativity and focus. Both great qualities to encourage in students.
Every color has its advantages and disadvantages. But it’s worth it to be thoughtful in choosing the colors to decorate your classroom in. Colors can be a big help in creating a positive and welcoming environment for your students.
Incorporating Student Work
Remember, as the teacher, the classroom isn’t just your space. It also belongs to the 20 or more (sometimes many more) students who are learning there. Decorations that you choose might add some much-needed color or provide some useful tools, but you’d be missing out on an opportunity for students to be truly inspired by and proud of their learning space. Incorporating student work into classroom decoration is a powerful strategy to achieve this.
This isn’t just a tip for elementary schools. And upper-grade teachers aren’t limited to simply hanging up well-written essays. There are plenty of ways to inject a little creativity into middle school and high school activities for a prime decorating opportunity. In fact, an arts-and-crafts twist on assignments for older students is a great way to capture their attention and put some energy into the day’s tasks.
Here are a few possibilities:
- Have students make a poster for a group presentation – it’s a great memory aid for students nervous about public speaking and looks great on your class wall
- Student-created flowcharts and timelines are a great way for them to absorb information with a decoration-worthy result
- Bring in a stack of old magazines and ask students to make collages centered around a theme from the class novel. Use these to spark discussions. Why choose these images? How does it reflect the theme?
These projects aren’t just for the sake of a pretty classroom space. Creative projects are a powerful learning tool. They provide students the opportunity to express themselves and can create a greater sense of accomplishment than a simple worksheet. Furthermore, they encourage innovation and improved problem-solving skills by requiring students to think about concepts in an unusual way. Finally, creative projects are just more fun. They usually dispel boredom and capture attention better than a more standard assignment.
More Than Just Walls
Walls get a lot of love in the world of classroom decoration. Even the most decorations-shy teacher will hang a poster or two. But walls aren’t the only surfaces available to you. Getting a little creative can result in a colorful classroom without plastering the walls edge-to-edge.
Elementary school teachers may already be practiced at taking advantage of the space a ceiling has to offer. It doesn’t take much effort to hang a colorful banner or an educational mobile and break up the boring white space. This is another opportunity for student involvement as well. Decorated stars or clouds with a student’s chosen favorite quote or goal for the year could be a short fun project that creates an inspiring and personal environment for the year.
Now that we’ve looked up, take a look down too. Consider some floor décor to liven up the generally boring carpeting most of us are stuck with. Floor decals have long been used by kindergarten school teachers to help encourage energetic kids into orderly lines. But these simple peel and stick additions are a unique way for any teacher to add color and decoration to their classroom.
Writable Walls Put The Fun in Functionality
The upgrade from chalkboards to whiteboards was pretty fantastic. Goodbye clouds of chalk dust! But although they’re a (mostly) functional tool, they don’t exactly add to your classroom’s décor. Extremely plain at the best of times, a few months of use can leave them covered in marks that just won’t quite go away. It doesn’t take much time to go from pristine white to an eyesore. Luckily, some alternatives are both super functional and add to your classroom’s décor.
Custom printed dry erase wall covering adds both color and style while providing a writable surface that wipes clean every time. Peerhatch provides a selection of products made specifically for school, incorporating everything from inspirational imagery to educational tools like the periodic table. Custom design options even allow schools to incorporate mascots, school colors, or logos.
Custom dry erase wall covering is an ideal opportunity to turn a tool every teacher needs into a chance to beautify classrooms and foster school spirit.
Taking Your Classroom to The Next Level
Decorating a classroom well isn’t just a matter of ordering a few posters and calling it a day. With a little consideration, even just a few decorations can powerfully transform an educational space. Create an inspiring space that your students will be excited to learn in. Taking advantage of color psychology, enlisting student help, and choosing tools like a custom class wall covering are all important strategies. Taking your classroom to the next level may take some effort, but your students and learners will appreciate it.