Welcome to my first classroom makeover! Every teacher wants to create a classroom environment that is inviting and homey. I had the amazing opportunity to help a first-year teacher named Angie (pictured below) create the classroom of her dreams! Angie will be teaching fourth grade next year after being a long-term sub last year. Even better, she opted into looping with her students from last year. From our first meeting, Angie’s love and enthusiasm for her students was contagious.
It was obvious her room needed to match her engaging personality, so we began with my Bold Bright’s and Black and Whites classroom decor bundle as the base. To match the rest of Angie’s style we added homey touches of farmhouse and glam. The overall result transformed her classroom into being a home away from home!
The first step in organizing the classroom was identifying the key sections of the room. We moved desks, chairs, and tables until we had a good idea of the traffic patterns and usage of each part of the room. By the time we were done we had the computer station, the supply station, the small group corner and the reading corner set in stone.
I like to think of this as the bone structure of the room. In the first picture shown below you can see what our reading corner looked like after arranging the furniture. Angie had a fantastic couch for students to sit on, but I knew I wanted to increase the amount of seating and find ways to make this corner an engaging place for students to spend time.
The last picture shown is a picture of the back of Angie’s room. The door is located on the left so I knew I wanted to brighten up the top area of her cubbies so that the room screams hospitality as soon as you walk in.
Once I had the structure of the classroom in place it was time to transform her classroom into a home away from home. This meant I had a perfect excuse to have a mini-date with my hubs at one of my favorite places – IKEA ?
Before diving into all the classroom makeover fun, I want to give you my NUMBER ONE tip for decorating your classroom! Use a CORDLESS glue gun!!! This is a serious game-changer. I use a cordless glue gun for nearly everything I put up on the wall. No longer do you have the annoying cord dangling everywhere when trying to glue labels on book bins and alphabet letters above your board!
The best part about the cordless glue gun is that it’s so affordable and very close in price to a normal glue gun! If you were willing to spend a little bit more money, you might want to consider the Elmer’s cordless glue gun.
Elmer’s is always quality, AND if you’re trying to save money Elemer’s also offers a mini version. For situations where I didn’t need the glue gun, I loved using Velcro command strips. Velcro command strips are very forgiving and can hold up to about 12 lbs.
I’ve organized this blog by each section of the room. This does contain amazon affiliate links, meaning at no cost to you I make a small commission to offset the costs of running this website.
Angie wanted bright colors, which can sometimes be a challenge to keep cohesive. A simple rule I follow when I’m decorating with color is to stick with the same five or six colors that go well together or a family of colors. Once I had my colors, I wanted to accent them with touches of black and white. Simplistic black and white patterns are one the most versatile decoration tools. This is especially true next to bright colors because the black and white patterns make the colors pop and brighten the atmosphere of the entire room instantly!
Above the board you can see my alphabet set which sets the tone for the entire classroom. To avoid color overload I used black and white scalloped borders to outline the white boards. I am obsessed with the black and white rug that brings style without adding color overload. I used the 5’3″ x 7′ but they also offer a 7’10” x 9’10” option as well. If you’re looking for something a little different consider this Bohemian chic rug that pairs well with the colors of this pack, or a black and white polka dot rug.
We placed the calendar in the front of the room for students to be able to quickly reference. The calendar pack was designed to fit perfectly in a black scholastic pocket chart. The black pom pom pillow is from Hobby Lobby – what can’t you find at Hobby Lobby? The faux fur rug is from five below which has some surprisingly great stuff for the classroom.
The 3 rules of her classroom, “Work Hard, “Be Kind” and “Play Safe” were made bold and bright to make the rules engaging. We made a conscious effort to put the rules at the student eye level while they’re on the carpet so that even when they’re daydreaming, they find clear expectations for their behavior. To do the same in your classroom, checkout the rules here.
We had to get creative with this reading area! I initially thought we could get rid of the dark green cabinet in the corner but we realized it was bolted to the ground. We decided to put the happy birthday banner and board up here to add color and purpose to this area and we are so glad we did! We also added the beautiful and airy canopy tent to add character and also hide some of the cords in the back. The rainbow pillow, faux fur rug, hexagon table, and stool are all from Five Below – seriously guys make a trip to five below and be amazed!
When we first saw this wall (you can see it in the before pictures) we knew it desperately needed color and light! This area was the darkest part of Angie’s room so we knew this would be the wall to paint. We picked out the perfect shade of turquoise blue for her room. This color is from Lowe’s and is called “Sea Lily.”
I printed the quotes poster size using my home computer – if you’d like to turn growth mindset quotes into full poster size check out my blog post. I bought the frames from Michael’s. The “Amazing Work” signs are a freebie in my store.
Since Angie wanted touches of glam and farmhouse, I decided to make her this boho/glam chandelier using tassels. It was SO easy! This youtube tutorial makes it so easy to make this a reality in your own room. The hall passes are actually editable desk name plates from my Bold Brights Collection.
We put Velcro command strips on them because it keeps the hall passes a lot cleaner! I’ve used ribbon before and the ribbons get dirty fast. The glittery stars are from Amazon. I cut them and draped them all around the room. The two rugs are from Hobby Lobby (Definitely not a shock!)
Angie wanted a bulletin board display she could leave up all year. Because she is a huge fan of motivational posters/quotes, I knew this “You Are Loved” quote would be the perfect display in her room!
We wanted to have a spot in the room where student jobs were posted clearly. I thought it was a great idea to have some inspirational posters on the door next to the jobs, along with a mirror so that students could see themselves as they get inspired. Such a colorful way to equip students with encouragement as they take on classroom responsibilities!
Windows are my favorite feature in a classroom. I’m a huge fan of bringing natural light into the classroom and wanted to feature that in Angie’s classroom! Adding the plants from IKEA made this area of the classroom instantly feel balanced and at home. We added touches of farmhouse by adding the black and white growth mindset posters. We kept her reading small group plans right by her table. We know administration will LOVE seeing her plans open and ready every day in her beautiful agenda!
The first thing we did with her desk was angle it towards the classroom so she could keep an eye on students at all times. One of Angie’s #1 requests was to have succulents in her room so I knew we needed to contact The Heavy in Winter Park, Florida. They generously donated multiple succulents to her room. They added exactly what we needed in her classroom to make it feel like a home away from home. If you live anywhere in the area you’ve got to check out their amazing shop!
She also has a coffee area, a little mailbox for her students to write her notes, and bright toolbox labels to keep her organized all year long.
I’m so glad I had the opportunity to give Angie a classroom makeover that she’s excited about! Every classroom should feel like a welcoming place not just for her, but for her students as well! The bright colors, the black and white, and the touches of farmhouse and glam were all perfect for the space and for what Angie wanted.
Here are some freebies to get you started on making your classroom a home away from!
Check out the entire Bold Brights and Black & White bundle for yourself! It includes 46 files, 22 of which are editable and over 3,500 pages! You will find everything you need to make your classroom a home away from home 🙂