As part of my classroom makeover for the new school year, I added some new pizazz to my classroom door. It is such a simple touch and super easy to do, but is a detail that helps give your classroom a more finished look and helps to enhance your classroom theme and color scheme.
{My friend Jill's classroom door...check out her TPT Store for Upper Elementary}

In addition to traditional bulletin board trim you can also use duct tape, ribbon or streamers. 

If you have a metal door frame you will find that duct tape attaches well and removes easily without damaging the surface at all.  My door frames are maroon which clash with everything else in the room. I used black tape on my frames and love the consistency in the color throughout the room.

Another option is to attach magnets to the border or ribbons using a hot glue gun.

{Also shown in the picture: Hand Signals for Classroom Management}

In the past I have covered the entire door with fadeless paper, but I feel like this adds just enough “something” extra without the hassle of decorating the entire door.

Do you decorate your classroom door?

Also shown in these pictures:

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  • It's simple, yet packs a big impact.
  • I love personalization within the classroom.
  • As a parent, I would very much appreciate seeing something like this in my childrens' classrooms because it shows that the teacher cares.


I don't sew.

It's as simple as that.

My mother and my sister are able to create wonders with a needle and thread.

I've been known to duct tape the hem on a pair of pants. Lucky for me, I'm tall enough that most pants are already short and don't need hemming.

However, girlfriend here known how to work a stapler and a pair of scissors and that was all that was needed to make me a pair of curtains.
I began with twin flat sheets from Walmart. They are cheap and the colors are plentiful.
I measured the length from the ceiling to where wanted them to fall.

Next, I measured that same distance on the sheet from the already sewn edge and cut it.

A staple here. A staple there. I had me a set of curtains to add charm and reduce glare.

I choose to alternate colors. Actually my class voted on it and they wanted alternating colors. I love it too though.

Because they are not hanging on a rod or sewn in any way they lacked a "finished look."
I grabbed some bulletin board border that was left over and stapled that at the top.

That's it. Easy-peasy!!

Do y'all remember this photo?

I posted it last year on the blog and pinned it as a "classroom I want to live in."

{ you follow me on Pinterest?  You should. Just sayin'}

Is it not just a super happy place?  Don't you want to work in there? Swoon.

Over the next few weeks I'll be getting my room ready for the fall with the help of my current 3rd grade friends. It's become my tradition and is really special to the kids. They know that the 4th graders prepared our current room for them and they look forward to this rite of passage.

I don't want to take away from instructional time to have them doing odd jobs so I make tasks available during snack, recess and before school. Since we have a full week of rain in the forecast, I am thinking indoor recess will be a wonderful opportunity to teach them how to make tissue pom poms.

They are like little puffs of happiness.

And super easy to make.

And way cheap too.

And you can pick colors to match every color scheme.

Here's a link to my girl Martha's site with a tutorial on how to whip them up.  Of course Martha tells you to use floral wire because that's the way Martha rolls. But, since you most likely don't have floral wire lying around I suggest you use pipe cleaners.
{Martha's link for DIY tissue paper pom poms}

  • It is visually appealing and easy for kiddos to read.
  • It increases accountability.
  • Most importantly, it sets goals for the children without making them feel inadequate. I’ve been asked by many readers to do a post on data walls (and because I love y’all and I know many of you are required to have them, I do have one coming), but it makes me feel a bit sick to my stomach to visualize a student’s abilities displayed for all to see. This chart is different because EVERYBODY has a goal to work on.
  • It is so bright and colorful.
  • I love how it frames the space.
  • It's different than a traditional border or curtain.


  • As things are changing in classrooms everywhere and we are quickly becoming so data-driven, I find I need to keep reminding myself of why I became a teacher and what I know in my heart is what kids need to succeed. Large, strong words will be constant reminders.
  • They send a message without getting lost in the shuffle. As the walls get busy, these will stand out.
  • It sends a positive message to visitors entering the classroom in an easy, simple way.
  • I want my students to internalize these words.

  • It's both cute and functional.
  • I love how it is sectioned off to be visually organized.
  • The sign uses both sides of the paper.  My current is a single list.

I have a classroom wall that is really an accordion divider that can open into the next classroom.  Except it can’t. I don’t think it has ever been opened which is kind of a bummer because next year my teaching partner will be on the other side and I would love to be able to do some true team teaching.  But we can’t.  And so I must make the most of the wall that is not a wall. I have developed a system for getting a staple in but it isn’t easy.  This year I finally wised up and attached bed sheets to cover the entire wall.  My plan is to now hot glue everything directly onto the sheets.  I have been wracking my brain trying to figure out how I could attach a magnetic board or a dry erase board to it so that I have some flexibility.  I thought a cookie sheet would be the best option, but then I stumbled upon this and it made me much happier.  
And that led me to these:

{photo source}
  • Cutesy scrapbook paper that can coordinate with my classroom color scheme - Duh!
  • It’s lightweight so it can easily be attached to the sheet with hot glue.
  • It’s fun is that?
  • Did somebody say Dollar Store?

  • I used to have an exemplar journal entry hanging in my room, but took it down because it wasn’t being used.  I feel optimistic about this one.
  • I think rubrics are a developmental thing and not all kids are ready to use them effectively in 3rd grade. 
  • I feel that having 4 samples to compare their work to will make them much more accountable. 
  • It’s visual. I will be able to say, “which sample does your writing most look like and why?” and ALL students can verbally respond to that. I don’t feel the same is true for a text-only rubric.
  • I’m excited about how this will work in conjunction with Zoo Keeper’s Writing Goals Chart which I featured yesterday.

Pick and click any or all of the options below.

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