Sunday, August 4, 2019

Farmhouse Themed Classroom Decoration Ideas

I love a pretty classroom. Although I realize that classroom decor is not the most important aspect of teaching,  having a pretty classroom makes a nice work environment, not only for my students, but for me as well. I also realize that decorating a classroom can cost a teacher a lot of money and time. (For ideas on ways to decorate a classroom on a budget, see this post HERE).

Today, I am beginning a series of blog posts full of simple ideas for classroom themes, and I am starting with my Farmhouse Themed Classroom!

Now, I did not jump on board with the farmhouse classroom in the beginning. I loved the farmhouse look for my home, but I just did not buy into the idea of using it in my classroom. When I finally decided it was time to give up my bold and bright color scheme and try something different, I chose to go with the farmhouse look, and I was so happy with the results! I have had a tremendous amount of compliments on my classroom, and I have even had visitors from our central office and from other schools pop in just to see my room.

There are 3 main reasons that I love my farmhouse classroom:
  1. Simplicity of the design
  2. Calming Colors
  3. Minimal Visual Distractions

My take on a farmhouse classroom theme is simplistic. I didn't want to go overboard, plus I didn't want to spend much money of my own. In fact, the only purchases that I made for this classroom were two sets of curtains, a couple of galvanized containers, a few bulletin board supplies, and two rugs: one large and one small. Everything else was given to me, re-purposed, or came out of my own house (something stored in my basement or attic).

To create my farmhouse themed classroom, I began with a black and white color scheme. I love this because these simple colors create such a calming classroom. Also, I have bright kelly green chairs that I must work with, so the neutral colors don't compete with the bold green. I already had one set of black and white curtains, and I had a black wicker chair sitting in my basement that I knew would look perfect in my classroom. I painted a blue picture frame that I had previously used in my classroom, silver, and hung a wreath that I had at home in the center. I gathered galvanized buckets and containers from home, painted a few green plastic bins silver, and my transition to my farmhouse classroom was starting.
This galvanized bucket came from my home. My husband made the sticker to go on the bucket.
This chair was one that I had in my basement. 

I have two bulletin boards in my classroom, so on one board I created a grammar bulletin board set. I teach reading and language arts to two homerooms, so having a grammar bulletin board as a reference throughout the year is perfect. I used a galvanized metal-look background paper. Then I layered a black scalloped border with a wood grain-look border. On each end I used a burlap ribbon that I scrunched and stapled. I finished the corner with a burlap decoration that I came from Hobby Lobby. This bulletin board can be found HERE.
This set of 63 grammar posters can be found in my store. Click on the photo above.

I created another bulletin board for reading using the same borders and background paper, and I loved how this one turned out! It reflects my philosophy of reading so perfectly!
Find this bulletin board HERE.

Finally, on a blank wall I hung my Farmhouse Motivational Posters. (In my classroom, motivational posters are always a must for me!) I layered this on top of black paper place mats that I found at Hobby Lobby. 
Find these motivational posters HERE in my store.

Creating a farmhouse theme in your classroom can be easy by simply creating a couple of farmhouse themed bulletin boards in your classroom and adding some black and white accents.

I hope you found some fun ideas for your farmhouse themed classroom! Have a blessed day!

Monday, July 1, 2019

How to Decorate Your Classroom on a Budget Plus Free Table Signs and Free Hall Passes

Decorating your classroom can be a lot of fun! Some teachers love it, while others hate it. I tend to love decorating my classroom. I have spent a lot of time over the years putting together my classrooms, and I have spent my own money to do this, but it does not have to be this way. This year, I do not plan to spend a dime on classroom decor. Decorating a classroom does not have to be stressful, take all summer to complete, or break the bank. Creating a welcoming space can be a simple process that should not require that you spend a lot (or any) of your own cash.

Here are four fabulous suggestions that I have for putting together a great looking classroom on a budget:

  1. Work with what you already have e.g. bulletin board backgrounds and borders, existing rugs, etc. One trick that I love is to use my collection of picture books to decorate my shelves. (See the picture above for examples.) These can be changed out to change the look or choose books to color coordinate with your classroom. Perhaps you have things that you can use at home in your attic or basement (an old rug, containers, a chair, etc.) that you could use in your room. Wrong color? Then perhaps spray paint can help coordinate. Your classroom can look coordinated without going out and purchasing all new items. Also, think minimalist. Sometimes less is more! 
  2. Bulletin boards are enough. Don't get caught up in thinking that you must decorate every square inch of every surface in your classroom. Two or three coordinating bulletin boards are enough to make your classroom look well put together. 
  3. Your classroom theme doesn't have to be completed in one year. Build on a theme over several years. You can save a lot of money this way. Simply using the same classroom decor for several years can be a great way to save money. 
  4. Find freebies! Search Teachers Pay Teachers for free decor for your classroom. There are tons of free items offered, so you are sure to find something free to coordinate with your decorating scheme. Be sure to check out my freebies below!
Perhaps you are wanting and searching for a fun classroom theme. One fun and unique idea that would be perfect is this Cupcake Classroom Decor Bundle. Imagine a classroom full of bright, yet calming colors, cute little smiling cupcake faces, and coordinating classroom decor. That is exactly what is included in this fun set. I actually created this classroom decor for a sweet teaching bestie of mine, and now it can be your decor, too! 

This fun set contains three choices of bulletin boards. 

Cupcake Motivational Bulletin Board Set

Cupcake Grammar Bulletin Board Set

Editable Cupcake Objectives Board

Simply using these three coordinating bulletin board sets would be a perfect way to create a fun and cohesive classroom decor, but if you are looking for even more coordinating items to use in your classroom, there are several other items that are included. 

All of these items can be found HERE to purchase in a complete bundle. Also in the bundle are a bonus cupcake themed all about me poster as well as editable name plates.

Now, for the Freebies!

Don't forget to grab your freebies! I have two free items in my store that coordinate perfectly with this cute cupcake theme. 

Cupcake Theme Table Signs

Wouldn't your tables look adorable with this cute cupcake signs?  I just love these little signs! You and your students will love love them too. Find them free HERE. 

Cupcake Hall Passes

These cupcake hall passes will come in handy this year for your students. Find them free HERE. If you download, your feedback is greatly appreciated! I hope you enjoy these freebies!

Have fun planning and decorating your classroom, and have a blessed day!

Sunday, June 16, 2019

5 Tips on How to Make an Attractive Cover Page for Teachers Pay Teachers

You have spent hours upon hours creating that perfect resource, and you are now ready to upload it to Teachers Pay Teachers...but is the product really ready? Take another look at the cover. Your product cover is the first thing that potential buyers will see about your resource, and it needs to grab their attention and make a positive first impression. A product cover should be created with planning and careful consideration. It needs to be  an eye-catching design that draws makes teachers want to explore more about your resource. How can a cover do that? Here are 5 tips on how to make your cover page for Teachers Pay Teachers attractive.

1. Make It Square.

The space allowed on Teachers Pay Teachers for cover pages and thumbnails is designed to be square. Be sure to take advantage of all of this available space. When the cover is not square, the cover has too much blank space that simply looks empty. Look at this example from my TpT store.

You can see the difference in the square cover and the rectangle cover. The square covers simply stand out. Also, more space means more information that you can include about your product. Now, if I could only find time to update all of my older products cover pages to square! This is definitely on my to-do list.

2. Think about Your Fonts

Use large fonts to create a product title that is easy to read. I love fancy fonts and pretty fonts, but too much can be overwhelming. Try to choose 2-4 fonts to use on your cover page. Using too many styles can look too busy. Also, using only one can be a little boring.

3. Develop Your Own Style. 

Choose one favorite font, color, or background paper to use in all of your product covers to make your products look consistent. Once you develop a style, your followers will easily recognize your products. Are you still looking for a style? Try my TpT Seller's Bundle for a coordinating set of background papers, ribbons, borders, and more that will help make your product covers not only stand out, but give your covers a uniform style.

4. Add Interest with Borders.

Sometimes your product cover just needs a little something else. Try a border! Borders are a simple and easy way to add interest and some dimension to your product cover. My Seller's Bundle (above) contains square borders that are perfect for your cover creations. For even more options visit my store HERE or try any of the following borders from my store.

5. Use a Photo

Finally, try using a photo of your product in action. Give potential buyers a chance to see your product in use by taking a quality photo of your resource and placing it right on the cover. Doing this can make your product cover stand out from the rest and catch the eye of teachers in search of a good resource.

Creating a quality cover page for your Teachers Pay Teachers resource may take extra time, thought, and effort, but I believe that creating a quality product cover will get your resource noticed and help get your resources noticed. Of course, a quality cover is just a small part of creating resources for TpT. Creating a quality resource within the packet is very important, but by creating a resource cover that is attractive and stands out from the rest, potential buyers will see the quality and the time that you put into your resources.

Enjoy creating and have a blessed day!