Monday, July 13, 2015

Classroom Display

Happy Monday, everyone!  It's Lisa from Second Grade Stories coming to you with a two great ideas for Make-It Monday!

I have to tell you, I'm not much of a crafter.  I don't scrapbook, I don't have a room filled with art supplies... I like my crafts easy and simple!  This first idea is soooo easy and simple, but it has had such a BIG impact in my classroom. I have this big white space by my door when you come in the classroom.  It doesn't have a bulletin board, no cork strip... just open space.  I have never really been able to figure out what to put there (and how to hang it!) so decided to fill it with something to think about.

Developing a sense of classroom community - a respectful environment in which all students feel valued, is the cornerstone of my teaching. So I decided, why not put that front and center as the first thing you see when you walk into the room!

  I bought curlicue wooden letters from Michael's (on sale for 99 cents!) and painted them black and sprayed them with clear gloss.
(I had to go to THREE different stores to get a the letters I needed, but it was worth it!)  Here's the end result:

These simple words are the very first thing you see when you enter our classroom - and since they are black letters on a white wall, they really stand out.  Pretty much EVERYONE who comes into our classroom comments on the letters.

This was definitely a small project that has a BIG impact!

I also have another space in my room that is hard to fill.  It's the blank corkboard space above my whiteboard.  It's loooooong and narrow and high up.  And it's in the back of the room.  The same space in the front of the room has my alphabet and some quotes, etc.  But the back area was pretty much a black hole of space. I knew I was going to need more than one thing to fill it up, and whatever went up there would have to STAY there all year, soooo.... let's see what I did.

I started with 8x10 blank artist canvases, modpodge, brushes, scrapbook paper, black acrylic paint and clear gloss sealer.  (And I didn't think to take pictures of what I need until I started, so we'll have to just go with the list.)

Step #1  Paint the canvases black.  I put on two coats because the first one still showed some white when it dried.

Step #2  Cut out letters.  I used my Silhouette Cameo so it was easy-easy.  I made the letters fit an 8x10 frame, and had the Cameo cut them out. (Hard to see, but there is an "E" cut on there.)

Step #3  Modpodge the black canvases.  Modpodge is your friend - use a lot.  It goes on smoother when the brush is full. 

Step #4  Brush modpodge on the back of the cut out letter and stick it to the canvas.  It helps if you just put down one edge first then run your finger over the letter as the rest of it goes down.  You get fewer bubbles that way.

Step #5  Now cover the whole thing in more modpodge.  Run the brush in the direction of the letter s it doesn't tear.  Smooth out the thick parts and let it dry.

Step #6  After they are dry, spray the canvases with a clear sealer.

Can you figure out what it spells?

There you go!  I hung these up in the back of the room and they really do look nice. 

It still looks a little bare there right now, so I'm thinking about what can go on either side of the words.  I had some of those pompoms up there, but they looked funny.  Any ideas?

I hope my simple ideas have inspired you to try something in your classroom.  Just remember, small ideas can have a BIG impact! Thanks for stopping by!

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  1. I love what you have done! I teach second, too! Everything looks so clean and crisp!
    Have a great summer!
    Planet Happy Smiles

  2. Hi, Lisa! I love the curly Q letters too! I was just at Michael's the other day and picked up some great bargains.
    "Be Kind" is a great message to be seen as they enter your classroom:)

  3. Hi, Lisa! I love the curly Q letters too! I was just at Michael's the other day and picked up some great bargains.
    "Be Kind" is a great message to be seen as they enter your classroom:)

  4. How did you mount the Be Kind letters to the wall?